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How much is too much to pay for services at your dealership?

2162 Views 40 Replies 16 Participants Last post by  momotaroboy
I recently got my 2017 Mazda 3 GS serviced at Buds Mazda Oakville Canada. I was charged $280 for the labor (receipt attached) alone while parts was just $55.

I can see that all this labor cost was for engine oil change and the rest was mostly just inspection for the 72k service. I even declined tire rotation since I had recently installed winter tires on my own.

My car is not under warrany anymore and I feel like dealerships charge an exorbitant price for these regular maintenances. Am I paying too much and should I move off the dealership for servicing? What do I risk with leaving the dealership?

Also, for Candian folks out there, any recommendations for a good place to service my Mazda 3 in the Halton / Hamilton region?
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they don't call them stealerships for nothing. i have a 2.0L 2015 GS and have been doing my own maintenance from day one. from what i'm seeing here:

- brake fluid flush was likely completely unnecessary. not saying don't flush it, but at 72k kms it was probably fine for a while. i did mine for the first time last year at over 200k kms. amazon sells brake fluid moisture detectors very cheap and can give you an idea when it needs to be done. FYI a flush isn't even in the maintenance schedule.

- wheel alignment. you need this when it's not driving straight or there's abnormal wear on the tires. did you have either?

- cabin air filter....you can easily do this on your own, filters are cheap. personally, i just buy cheap ones from amazon a few at a time but what you use is your choice. they are NOT dependent on mileage or age. take it out and look at it.

- engine air filter, same as above. the consequences of a dirty filter are pretty much nothing until it really starts to get plugged and that will take a while. this is also stupid easy for you to replace, no tools required. what they're charging is a complete scam for both filters.

- throttle body cleaning. completely unnecessary at your mileage - or mine for that matter. you do this when there is a problem. this is also not in your maintenance schedule.

-fuel injector cleaning. so they put a bottle of cleaner in your gas tank for you at the tune of $170. no thanks. injector cleaner is almost always completely unnecessary because it's already in the fuel you buy. if you're worried, go buy yourself a good injector cleaner at CT every now and then. myself, i don't use it and never have. it has never been an issue. another item not in the maintenance schedule.

so yes you've been robbed.
I can only assume you've at least been changing your brake fluid and just not "flushing" the system. If you've changed your brake fluid for the first time in over 200k kms then wow...
It was around 200k, maybe a little earlier. I did a full flush for the first time. I've been keeping an eye on it both fluid color and moisture content. It wasn't even that bad when I flushed it.

Truth is it just isn't as big a deal as it's made out to be. The brake systems are far better sealed than they were in the past so it's less of a problem. With that in mind, I'd never recommend anyone goes this far without a tester to monitor moisture content.

The dealer on the other hand would very much prefer that you flush the brakes far more often. Unnecessary maintenance is just good business.
Interesting. I'll still stick to the manual's intervals since I just do it myself but that's good to know.
that's just it, there is no flush interval. it's listed as inspect fluid level every 8k kms for us canucks and nothing more.

it does list 40k kms as severe use in mexico to flush the brake fluid. severe use in the US is only inspect fluid level. use your judgement on that one, from my experience here and with other cars that's usually excessive.

most of the time the dealers will tell you what is 'required' maintenance. rarely do we check against the official maintenance schedule. remember, the dealers are there to make money, not be your friend. so when you stop and think about it, the people who designed and built your car came up with this schedule to keep it running. the dealer just wants business. as far as warranty goes, the dealer only facilitates the warranty - despite what they would want you to believe they do not dictate the terms and conditions of the warranty.

so if a dealer is 'recommending' certain service that is not part of your schedule, think long and hard about it. i like to tell people "never trust anyone with a motive that does not coincide with your own". the dealer wants your money, so therefore i don't trust them until proven. the manufacturer wants me to buy another mazda one day and they know it being reliable will be strong persuasion so the manufacturer is more trustworthy in this scenario.
Ignore this

But yeah, I agree. Take what the dealer says with a grain of salt and do your own due diligence in researching.


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I don't know where that document came from but what Mazda 3 from 2017 has an electric brake booster....which incidentally is the version that specifies fluid change......
This is what is in the actual Mazda owners manual for 2017.....

No specified interval, just inspect....
Doh! Ignore what I said. Wrong year.
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