How the automotive repair industry is different to most others and why you should be fighting along side us to protect it.
The auto repair industry is a strange anomaly, Were independent repairers vastly out number the manufacturer approved dealer network and a massive non-genuine parts industry exists (a large number of these parts manufacturers also supply vehicle manufacturers with their ‘genuine parts’.)
In Australia there are 22 000 businesses offering some form of auto repair or service, Less then one fifth of those are in the dealer network.
Due to the vast choice you have and the options of non-genuine parts, the repair and service costs are quite low. Dealer workshops focus on replacing parts to fix your car, if the parts become obsolete (after 5 years from end of model run, there is no legal requirement for the manufacturer to keep spare parts available) they simple are not interested in repairing your car. They would much prefer you bought a new one.
Independents like McGrath Auto don’t have a hidden agenda, our sole purpose is to keep your car on the road, we don’t limit ourselves to only replacement parts, we poses the skills to repair damaged parts and to fabricate replacements or retrofit parts from a later model. It precisely this ability that keeps the independent network of repairers in existence.
We are currently fighting a battle with the vehicle manufacturers, they can the hold we have and are doing everything that can to strip us of our ability to service, diagnose and repair your cars.
This started with the withholding of service and repair information, locking us out of computer systems by necessitating the need for genuine scan tools and then most manufacturers not making these tools available for purchase, It has grown into control units being supplied with out any programing, basically a blank computer that needs to be programed with genuine tools and access to software that most manufacturers are withholding from Australian independent repairers.
In some cases, something as simple replacing a power steering pump just can’t be done without a trip to a dealer to have it programed. And you can be assured they don’t do anything to make that an easy thing to do and normally takes days to get the car back.
More and more cars now need to service resets in the engine computer for things such oil life monitoring and particulate filter monitoring, It generally takes a few years for these functions to trickle down into aftermarket scan tools, again due to the manufacturers simply withholding the information.
There is strong evidence to support the accusations against the manufacturers and our Govt recognizes the problems and gave an ultimatum to the manufactures, start providing the information for a reasonable price or the Govt with legislate.
So far the manufacturers have been dragging the process out as long as they can, some have started to provide very limited access, WELL below the levels of access these same manufacturers provide in the Europe and the USA/Canada.
If you want to keep your choice and to keep repair and service costs low, You need to fight with us.
The dealer network doesn’t have the size to service the entire fleet of Australia which means waiting time will be longer and with no competition prices will only go up.