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Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Time For a Tune-Up?

At the start of the new year, I said I'd like to focus on your opinions about local businesses in the coming months. If you Google search for how much Americans spend on automobile repairs each year, you get wildly varying numbers, from $40 million to $100 billion! No matter how you reach the statistics, there's no denying that car maintenance and repairs are costly and often a source of tremendous stress. Who hasn't been in the situation of finally having paid off debt or having a small savings gathered up when BLAM, unexpected car troubles get you right back to zero?

As someone who recently dropped a bundle on automobile repairs, I'm curious: which local auto repair shop gets your business when you need regular maintenance, like an oil change or tire rotation? Who do you trust when your car, truck, SUV or other vehicle needs some major repairs and you're not even sure of the problem?
We recently featured local business Accurate Auto in one of our "Des Plaines Means Business" videos, but we'd love to hear about your experiences with excellent service and value right here in DP - yes, you may include one of the surrounding towns if you have found a real gem there. So share your comments with us here, even if it's anonymously, about the business which earns your business when it comes to auto/truck repair. No gripes, please - just the folks who get your "thumbs up."

Friendly reminder from our Reference department: if you like to do your own auto repairs, we have great online automotive resources, including the Chilton Library, which you can even access from your home computer with your DPPL card. Try it out next time you're under the hood!


  1. Because my car is a Toyota (1997 so it's not one with recall issues)and I have always driven Toyotas, I have been going to Bredemann Toyota for over 25 years. While car repairs are never inexpensive, I've always had great service from Bredemann. When car repairs take longer than expected they provide a loaner. They will also drive me back home or back to work and pick me up later when the car is ready. They wash my car before giving it back to me! Then they call the day after service and ask if all was completed to my satisfaction. Technically they are in Park Ridge, but they are located on Dempster next to Lutheran General so they're pretty close to Des Plaines.

  2. I know this has nothing to do with the automotive topic. Just wondering if anyone is interested in an adult chess group to meet at the library on Monday nights. If so my name is Martin and you can contact me at 847 274-3821. Thanks and hope to hear from you.

  3. I just read an article that the number one city to get ripped off in the U.S. is Chicago. I have been trying to find a reputable auto repair shop in our community for years. A common way that they rip you off is by jacking up the cost of the part. The next time you get a repair, ask them where they get their parts from. Then after you pay your bill, call up the parts store and ask what the price is. Also understand that when a repair shop has an account with a auto parts store, they get a discount on the parts they buy which means they pay even less then you do. If a repair shop would just do the work needed and charge you what they were suppose to, they would have more business then they could handle. With all the repair shops competing out there, I am surprised no one has taken that approach. Just charge what you should with a reasonable markup and I am sure no one would complain and gladly pay. I am still looking!

  4. I hear you, anonymous. Somewhat ironically, my car broke down this Sunday afternoon, just a few days after I wrote this post, looking for automotive advice! One thing I keep hearing from these places: "Oh, good news, we're giving you a 10 percent discount today because of..." but when I look up the typical price for the service I've received, it's the same or even more than the supposedly discounted price. If you're a person who doesn't know how to fix your own car, they know they have you trapped!

  5. Yes, I read that article that says that Chicago is the number one place across the entire country that ripps you off in auto service repairs. They should have state Government intervention to secretly check the repair shops for fraudulent charges. That threat could keep them more honest like the IRS does. Then fine them. They could use some of that money for sorely needed state funds and schools. A lot of money for the taking and help out us consumers.


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