Increasing DIY Repairs

PEP Boys revenue increased 5% last year and this is only sales from parts through there store and does not include any labor or parts sales from their shops. Many other aftermarket suppliers are showing comparable or higher results. RockAuto has grown by leaps and bounds the last few years. When O”Reilly bought up CSK I thought they were making a huge mistake but in retrospect it was a smart move. I thought dealerships would try to become competitive to increase their absorption, the amount of total expense it costs to operate, thus decreasing the markup needed on vehicles sales . Sadly the opposite has happened. They have tried the overselling route. I have seen estimates of $500 to $700 repairs suggested and even needed to continue the warrant on vehicles with 30 to 40K. Except for some repairs, and there are very few, no service should be required for the first 80 to 100K. I have run vehicles well over 200K with no problems. I seem to have a problem with heater motors but otherwise no serious repairs.One instance was with a 3.8 Buick, my wife was putting on a bunch of in town miles, a valve picked up a chunk of carbon and rather than clean up the valves I replaced the engine. A slight case of overkill but she loved the car and I gained some major points with her. With labor rates running over a hundred dollars an hour in many places it is no wonder more and more DIY are doing their own repairs. The one problem they are having is equipment such as scanners and lab scopes among other special tools required to do the repair. I think this was planned by the manufactures to eliminate any at home repairs. The same as they are trying to keep the independent shops from certain information. The freedom of information act is an important for independent shops to survive. Hiring of qualified techs is also a problem but with perservance this can be resolved.