Finding a new car mechanic
March 26, 2009 11:07 AM   Subscribe

I'm looking for a new car mechanic in Melbourne, Australia and/or tips for finding a reliable one in general...

I moved to Melbourne a little while ago and it's coming up time to service my car. Where I used to live I had an awesome mechanic who was honest, blunt, and never felt like he was ripping me off despite my ignorance of most of what makes my car go. He was the kind of guy that when someone else would try and sell me stuff I didn't need he'd tell me if I really did or whether I could get away for another few years with what I already had.

Unfortunantely, he couldn't recommend anyone in Melbourne, and while I found him through word of mouth no-one I know here can recommend anyone similiar.

Any tips or tricks for finding another guy as good (and most importantly, honest), or any direct recommendations?

Thanks in advance!
posted by Silentgoldfish to Travel & Transportation around Melbourne, Australia (4 answers total)
This basic template has worked for me in 2 US cities - YMMV down under.

Look for a auto shop that is locally owned and has been operating under the same name for 20+ years. Bonus points if it's family owned and has been run by the same family the entire time. If they have more then 3 or 4 locations be wary as it's very difficult to maintain consistent management across that many locations. Finally, ask how long their auto techs have been there. If turnover seems to be minimal that is also a good sign.
posted by COD at 12:13 PM on March 26, 2009

Whereabouts are you? I am in the eastern suburbs, and have been using Sanders Automotive for some time now.

He does all the servicing of my car, my partner's car and all the cars from work. Doesn't do work I don't need or upsell me on stuff, doesn't hesitate to tell me all about the problem with the car and explain it if I need explanation, and has a real enthusiasm for mechanical work.

He's not the cheapest mechanic I've been to, but having said that, I would NEVER go back to the cheap guys.

Hope this helps!
posted by tomble at 11:13 PM on March 26, 2009

If you're in the inner city, I've been taking my Saab to Ari at Wellingon Motors, on Wellington Street near the corner of Peel for the last few years. Reasonably priced and thorough. Came through word of mouth, and I can definitely recommend. Good luck!
posted by LongDrive at 5:58 AM on March 27, 2009

Response by poster: Thanks for those -- I'll try Wellington first since they're like 10 mins away. Easier to get home without a car!
posted by Silentgoldfish at 4:25 PM on March 30, 2009

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