It seems like a good idea. You buy the parts and have some shop install them. You save a little money, and they still make a little. What’s the problem?
- Let’s start with liability. Most shops carry a garage keepers policy that protects the shop if they install parts that fail and causes an accident or death. That policy does not cover customer provided parts. So for a few bucks, the shop has his you know what on the line if something goes wrong. It’s not worth it.
- When you own a repair business, you need to make profit on both parts and labor. That profit helps pay the bills, and if something does go wrong, allows the shop to cover the warranty. When you provide your own parts, you are taking that profit away, which means he needs to make it up by charging you more per hour labor rate.
- Most shops want a good relationship with their customers. Nothing can damage a business faster than an angry customer. Nothing makes a customer angry faster than when you tell him that you have to charge him again because the parts don’t fit, or are defective or are cheap substandard parts.
- You thought you got a good deal on a used transmission. Forty five days later that used transmission is junk. It’s pass the warranty with the junkyard, and you need someone to blame. You go yell at the shop that installed it. He did nothing wrong, but you need someone to point the finger at.
- You bought some brake pads off the Internet and the shop installed it. The pads came flying off and you caused a major pileup on the freeway. All the lawyers eyes turn to the shop that last worked on your car. Again, not worth it.
I hope this helps you. If you really want to save money, have the shop do the whole job and let them be responsible for the warranty. In the long run, it’s the smart way to go.