I had my car towed to B&L and I filled in the after hours key drop and called the next morning and spoke to Darin who ended up being the gentleman I spoke to for the duration of the time my car was there. I let him know what all was going on with my car and requested a diagnostic. I had to call every time just to get info on what was going on with it. They found that one of my fuses was repeatedly blowing so they recommended replacing 3 things associated with that fuse...the ignition switch, starter and the neutral safety switch. They were not sure which was bad so they recommended replacing one at a time until the problem was resolved and that it wasn’t likely the neutral safety switch. I explained to Darin that the car had been clicking as well but was told that this problem would not be causing the clicking. I explained that I'd like to know what the clicking was before I gave them the OK to do several hundred dollars worth of work to be sure there wasn't a correlation with the clicking since I had recently had other electrical work done on the car. They checked it out again and he informed me that the fuel wire was burnt and was causing the clicking and they went ahead and replaced it even though they did not check with me before actually doing the work. So, I inquired on the bill. I was billed $190 for two diagnostics totaling $380. My jaw dropped!! I inquired on why just a diagnostic was $190 and why was I being charged for two separate diagnostics. I was told they charge $95 an hour and that it took them 2 hours to diagnose the first problem and 2 hours to diagnose the 2nd problem but that they weren't charging me for the work to replace the burnt wire...only the diagnostics. I’ve never heard of a diagnostic costing more than $60-70. Unfortunately, it was a VERY hard lesson learned for me because I didn’t bother to ask the cost for a diagnostic beforehand since I assumed they were like any other shop and charged the same as any other shop for a diagnostic. I was confused at the hours they noted it took and I asked if they had done a computer diagnostic when I was informed they don't do computer diagnostics. I was also informed that they DO NOT waive the diagnostic cost if they do the work. UNHEARD OF! I was baffled because, again, at no point was I told they charged per hour for a diagnostic nor have I EVER heard of a shop charging per hour for a diagnostic. Darin, the Manager, proclaimed he informed me of the cost when I called the morning after I dropped the keys but I know without a doubt that he didn’t because if he had I would not have allowed them to touch my car. I called several other shops explaining the problem I was having with my car and requested the price they charged for a diagnostic to reassure myself I wasn’t losing my mind and got the same answer from several dealer shops and smaller shops...$59 or $69 for a computer diagnostic and the diagnostic price is waived if the shop does the work on the vehicle. So, thinking that B&L was just trying to get over on me, I had my brother-in-law call B&L and give a similar story with his car to see what they would tell him a diagnostic cost and Darin told him $60. : O When I confronted the Manager about it, he fed me a load of BS about how it wasn’t the same car problem. Needless to say we did not have them work on the car. We replaced the starter and the ignition switch but it did not fix the car. What’s even more interesting is that after I paid B&L $380 ($342 after they were so kind as to extend a 10% military discount) and then paid for parts to replace the two things they put in writing were causing the problem, I took it to the Mitsubishi dealer where I should have gone in the first. They did a COMPUTER diagnostic on the car and within a few hours diagnosed that my fuel pump was bad which is what was giving me the trouble all along. Do yourself a favor and STAY AWAY from B&L!!! They do poor work, have poor customer service, the business is greedy, and the Manager is a liar. This is just a warning from my own experience with them.
As a 3rd Generation business owner with over 61 years serving Newport News, the only response to your review is (false, and its been proven). Our longevity, family business practices, loyal customers, community involvement, amazing staff, and pride in our facility shows in our true reviews.
- B & L Automotive