So it was time to take the Kia in for an oil change. As I am past the initial 1st. year and it was a Saturday I thought I would take it over to the local Mr. Lube instead of booking an appointment at the Dealer in the next week or so. Now I have been taking cars to Mr. Lube for quite some time and have to say at this point that the service is always friendly and fast.
There was only one car ahead of me so it’s going to be a quick in and out. I was greeted as usual and asked what service I was looking for, just an oil change and filter. Part way through the service the Tech brought me the air filter, showed me that it was dirty and, since it was the original filter, I decided to have them change it. Same with the cabin filter! Happy with the service I paid the $175.00 and was on my way in less than twenty minutes.
So I get home and crack open a pop and say to myself “$175.00 that’s a little rich” so I grabbed the Invoice to see where the costs were. The two biggest items were the Air Filter $37.99 and Cabin filter at $69.95. On Monday morning I called the local Kia Dealer to get a cost for the Cabin Filter – $32.95. Armed with this it was back to Mr. Lube.
I met with the Tech who had installed the unit, told him that I thought there had been “a mistake” in the pricing and I assumed that he ran in the wrong SKU. I was told that this was not the fact. He explained that the “extra costs” were for installation. Now Mr. Lube has you sit in the car so I had watched him open my glove compartment, show me the filter and install the new one. This total process took about 45 seconds. I’ll be generous here and push it to a minute.
So assuming that Mr. Lube charges the same for an aftermarket filter as the Dealer charges for a Kia branded filter this means that I paid $37.00 for a minutes worth of “installation” or $2,200.00/hour.
I was told by the tech to go on-line and complete the satisfaction survey and when asked for comments express my concerns. This I did – no one ever got back to me.
So this is a U.S. vs. Canadian pricing blog so what would this cost me in the U.S.? Last week I went to N.J. to visit some friends. We went to the local Pep Boys and I purchased a spare Cabin Filter (Purolator) for $19.95. I asked how much it would cost to have it installed and was told there was no charge. Air Filter was $8.95. On Line price at http://www.autopartswarehouse.com even better at $11.95 plus $5.50 Shipping $17.45.
Total savings in U.S $79.04