Duluth/Superior Auto Mechanic Help

I’ve been living in this area for nearly four years and have not been able to find a decent auto mechanic who has a good reputation and is reliable. Any help or reviews would be greatly appreciated. It seems that for the most simple things I get charged an outrageous price, then the car breaks down a week later with something else unrelated. 

Duluth or Superior is fine I just need to feel like I’m not getting ripped off.  I’m 67 and female and really bet they see me coming.  I was charged for a fix, the same thing broke a week later and I was charged a “shop fee” to fix the same thing again.  Not nice!

39 Comments

viacrious

about 12 years ago

Hemlock Garage on 4th Street (at 1st Ave. E). Not necessarily discounted, but high quality work, and they are HONEST.

rnarum

about 12 years ago

SVS Complete Foreign Car Repair
Mark & Phil Strohm
2231 w superior St
(218) 729-4788

TimK

about 12 years ago

SVS is my shop of choice. They've limped me through different cars over the years and though not always cheap, always honest and fair. Tell them you saw this on PDD!

SD-M

about 12 years ago

Murphy's has been amazing for us.  Honest, fast, and even sympathetic.

1432 East 2nd Street
Duluth, MN 55805-2307
(218) 724-9929

samh

about 12 years ago

Auto Medics
531 East 5th Street, Duluth, MN‎
(218) 722-8082‎

They once actually told me nothing I thought needed fixing was worth it and that they had enough business already and saw no need in trying to screw me out of money for an unnecessary fix.

Tonia

about 12 years ago

Smiley's Commercial Vehicle
519 S. 59th Ave. W.
Duluth, MN 55807-2168
(218) 624-0645

Real honest service with a smile. Ask for Brett, he will take care of ya!!

Piglet

about 12 years ago

Hands down...call Mike Archer at Auto Medics. He is the BEST!

Shakeyone

about 12 years ago

Automedics -- 531 E 5th. Honest, fair, fast. Not necessarily the cheapest, but, you get what you pay for. Piglet, you're right-- Mike is the BEST!

Will

about 12 years ago

I second the comments about SVS. That place has always done right by me.

heysme

about 12 years ago

Gary at 4th Street Auto - 4th street between 11th and 12th Avenue East. Honest, reliable, fast, almost apologetic when he calls you to give you the diagnosis. Gives you options and doesn't make you feel like you have to get the work done right now. My whole family recommends.

Rae

about 12 years ago

I take my car (actually, it is there right now) to:

Foreign Affairs of Duluth, Inc
722 E. Ninth St.
Duluth, MN 55805-1468
(218) 722-2246

Their shop charge is about $80/hour.  Unfortunately, outside of warranty nothing is cheap these days.

I really like their front desk person, Karl.  He is so pleasant on the phone and willing to explain things.  They always bring out the broken part and explain what happened (if you want them to). They might recommend that while you have your water pump out you  might want to think about adjusting the tension er, but they don't feel bad when you say no.

The only thing is, I don't know if they ONLY work on imports, or if that is just their specialty.

Chad

about 12 years ago

I'll put in a plug for Paul at PRP in Gary. 

 504 Commonwealth Avenue, Duluth, MN‎ - 
 (218) 626-1134‎

He's honest, friendly, and understands that screwing customers is not a way to sustain a business.

krlars

about 12 years ago

I vote for University Service (used to be University Conoco) by Mount Royal.

Hmmmm

about 12 years ago

Morgan Park Service and Sales
1001 88th Avenue West
626-2317‎

I have gone in there a few times thinking I had a huge repair on my hands and told them what I thought it was. It would usually turn out that I was wrong and it was a cheap, quick fix. (Radiator cap instead of a new water pump). In other words, they have had plenty of opportunities to screw me over, but are too honest to do so.

adam

about 12 years ago

Second Gary at 4th Street Auto. Very reasonable prices.

MJH

about 12 years ago

I have nothing but good things to say about both The Hemlock Garage downtown and KJ's Auto up in Woodland. I have never had a bad experience with either place.

speechie

about 12 years ago

Pete's Tower Service has been taking care of my cars for twelve years and my parens' cars for twenty. They're fair, honest, thorough, and full of suggestions.
1928 Tower Avenue in Superior
392-5812
Tom, Tim, and Mike are the head guys and all are awesome.

brian

about 12 years ago

Gary at 4th Street Auto fer shure.
Plus he sponsors little league teams.

Emily

about 12 years ago

I'd like to make my pitch for Auto Medics as well.  My parents have gone to them ever since they moved here 20+ years ago, and I've used them ever since I've been driving.  All the guys are wonderful.  They've always been up front and honest with me.  They do great work, and you know when they've fixed something, it's fixed the right way.

kerc

about 12 years ago

I had a bad experience almost 10 years ago with a VW and Foreign Affairs. Probably the same people don't even work there, but it is worth saying ...

jimbo

about 12 years ago

Definitely SVS...Phil is amazing!

The Big E

about 12 years ago

I think Jimmy's Nuts and Bolts over in West Duluth is the Greatest Thing Ever when it comes to older cars. They're brilliant at keeping your aging vehicle in decent condition at a reasonable price.  Case in point, our friend needed a new hood cable on her 1980s Accord--after talking it over with her, they just ran a short length of wire straight out the grill rather than buying and installing the OEM part, and charged her a few bucks instead of 100.  If you want the traditional approach, they'll do it, but where they really excel is in being creative if it will provide a 90 percent solution and save you some money.

chadp

about 12 years ago

I second what Big E said.  Jimmy is great if you can make it there before Judge Judy comes on.  He fixed my car over the phone once.  He was in a feud with the Qwest phone book so you may have to look him up in that one other book.

David

about 12 years ago

4th Street has done right by Kate and David.

maggie p

about 12 years ago

Worst one for me over the past few years was Hansen's Auto on Anderson and Trinity.  (and I say was)  I live on Decker so it's the closest place, but I'll drive now...and do.  I got charged for the same repair twice because of a mandatory shop charge of over $70.  They did't waive it until my husband went in.  I won't go into all the other problems and wrong diagnosis over there but I'm stayin' away.

Dizastress

about 12 years ago

Pete's on Tower Ave in Superior is great, and Bob's South Tower Repair is just as good, if not better.  If it helps, I am a lady, and have felt the sting of getting snowed over by mechanics.  these guys are trustworthy gentlemen to the CORE, and have both even done small things for me for FREE in the past.  Jumped my battery, changed a few plugs, what have you.   They are true blue, and I would refer my own mother to them.  They have even said to me 'you need x, y, and z done.  I can do it for you, but so-and-so can do it for you for less than I can.  Take it here, and he should charge you about *thismuch*.'  And he was still right on.

beauxbeaux

about 12 years ago

To echo SD-M, Murphy's is very trustworthy and fair. I'm very happy with the service I've received there. I moved here a year ago and a co-worker recommended them. She's been bringing her vehicles there for 15+ years and has always been satisfied with their work.

Mojowoikin13

about 12 years ago

I love Gary and the guys at 4th Street Auto. Great diagnosticians and they don't fix things that don't need fixing.  PS, I learned about them when I first moved to town via NPR's Car Talk website - "Find a Mechanic" feature:
http://www.cartalk.com/content/mechx/

ginger

about 12 years ago

I like Hemlock. He's very thorough and honest and friendly and has even done a few free things. I always feel like he really appreciates my business because he's not surly and rude like a lot of mechanics I've dealt with. 

I had BAD experience with Bill's Muffler and Brake on Michigan Ave. Basically, I think the guy who worked on my car did NOT know what he was doing, and would not admit it. So, I paid big money for some repairs there, then had to pay more big money somewhere else to fix his mistakes.

MaryK

about 12 years ago

Jimmy is a great mechanic, and throws in stories and jokes for free.

CJ

about 12 years ago

As a single female I am very sad to say that there are a lot of unscrupulous auto mechanics who see dollar signs when a female with no wedding ring walks in the door.  Although everyone has probably had bad experiences, men and married couples generally have no clue how common it is for single females to be cheated.  I've had really good luck with Mag's Auto in Superior on East 4th St.  I wish you the best of luck in finding an honest mechanic.

Daren H.

about 12 years ago

Great blog.  I do know a lot about cars but there are many things I just cannot do. I really like Murphy's and Auto Medics, but to reply to Maggie, Hansen's Auto Service in Duluth is the absolute worst!  I knew what was wrong with my car but said nothing and acted stupid (easy for me).  Just took it in and they gave me an estimate for what was "really" wrong at a ridiculous price, PLUS another related repair they said I needed, which I did not, for an extra $300 on top of the original amount.  Don't know if it's Scott Hansen the owner but the buck stops with him no matter what.  I've heard this many times and have lived here for over 40 years. so I'd ask around.  They make big bucks there and don't need to rip people off.

KR

about 12 years ago

There's a guy on Huitt just off Belknap (or Broadway) in Superior named Tony Hewitt I think.  By a car sales/care shop in the alley though so you have to go around back.  Wish I could remember more.  Next time I go I'll get the address.  Great guy!  He and his wife are the only 2 there.  He's great, smokes like a chimney, gives a fair price and does great work.

David S.

about 12 years ago

Fourth Street Auto for sure. They have been great, and honest.

norton c

about 12 years ago

Will second/third whatever Hemlock.  Honest and timely.

Scottyboomblatty

about 12 years ago

We've been using Filteau Brothers in Superior since we moved here in 1998.

Herzog

about 12 years ago

I took my older Audi to 'Foreign Affairs' for 700 bucks in maintenance and they neglected to check the fluids, later to find that both tranny fluid and power steering were very low, you'd think with all that other work being done, routine maintenance like checking tranny fluid would've been included in the price. I Won't be going there any more.  Some of the slack mechanic stories coming out of Duluth boggle the mind.   One guy up by the mall, had a girl's car for three weeks, trying to figure out what was wrong, was ready to pull the whole thing apart, turned out the distributor cap, is what was causing the problem, after he had already done the plugs, and wires, neglected to change the distributor, normally part of a tune up, it looked like a wheat penny that had soaked in a '57 bottle of cola, we're talking outerimeter f-ups from the fifth dimension, for people masquerading as professionals that you pay a lot of money to know what's going on

Paul

about 12 years ago

Foreign Affairs, good friendly service and patient explanations. Not cheap, but if you want cheap don't drive fussy old foreigners. They have been our repair people for 20 years.

Kate

about 12 years ago

Chad's Auto in the West End.  Very good, I have been his customer for three years and will never go anywhere else.  I was a single women and he did not cheat me.  I am married now and we continue to go to his garage.

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