5th Gear Poster
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: Southern Oregon
This is a very timely question because I just returned from the alignment shop where I was told I needed the upper control arm ball joint assembly. He quoted me $250 for "top of the line" parts, or $150 for economy parts, plus $100 installation, plus $60 alignment. I should have asked him what brands he was quoting me on. I also asked if he did an online parts search. He doesn't do that. He doesn't trust stuff you buy on line, or the companies that sell it. He just opens up his thick parts catalog, only orders from regular sources. Perhaps it is ignorance on his part, or maybe it is an old sales trick. Evidently, according to him, the $125 control arm assembly has a lifetime warranty.
I'll be calling him back to find out what brands he has quoted me. Then I'll know how much too much I would have paid him to buy from his catalog. He actually told me the suggested msrp on the lifetime guarantee part was $195 each.
I doubt I'll go back there for the alignment. This looks like a job I can handle myself. All I need is a floor jack, the right tools, and some patience.
Right away I felt I could do much better on the parts price, and told him I would research and find my own parts. He told me his insurance would not allow him to install carry-in parts. I escaped with a $20 charge for inspection, and slight camber adjustment.