In the financial sense of the word, my 2002 Subaru Outback Impreza was totaled. She was at 164,000 miles and needed head gaskets, rear wheel bearings, and a variety of other odds and ends. The Subaru shop’s estimate for repairs was well over $6,000, almost doubling the amount that I spent on the car to begin with- and that was without tires, which she also needed. What did I know about mechanical work? It was either swallow the shop’s price, or buy a different car. My beloved Subie become my worst vehicle nightmare.
That was a week ago.
Today, my Subaru is ready, able, and willing to go another 100,000 miles- and it didn’t take over $6,000 to do it. The man behind the automotive magic? Seattle’s most honest mechanic, Kameron Laing. If you’ve ever felt pangs of anxiety about whether or not your mechanic is giving you an appropriate price or reliable information, breathe a sigh of relief. And then immediately call Auto Doctor.
Auto Doctor: The Company
Owned by Kameron Laing, Auto Doctor is a licensed business operating in the greater Seattle area since 2008. The coolest part about it? It’s a mobile mechanic company, meaning that the repairs come to you. Laing owns a machine shop for working on parts and more specific repairs, but for the vast majority of maintenance the work will be done right in your own driveway. With a van hauling a hydraulic engine lift in the back among other things, Auto Doctor has the equipment and the know-how to bring the auto shop to your front door. Typical repairs include head gasket replacements, engine swaps, axle repairs, fluid changes, wheel bearing fixes, and more. Every service also comes with a 1-year warranty on labor and parts. Convenient? Oh, yes. And it gets better.
Auto Doctor: The Man
Mobile mechanics might be convenient, but that doesn’t mean they’re trustworthy or fairly-priced. This is where Kameron Laing shatters all of the norms of Seattle mechanics. Blatant and honest, Laing gives up-front estimates and holds to them. He never takes a job he’s not sure he can accomplish and his work is fast, furious, and phenomenal. Kameron Laing is ASE, AES, and Emissions certified and has been working on cars since he was 15. His time spent in mechanic shops only served to teach him how unreliable and untrustworthy the services provided were, and he vowed, when he started Auto Doctor, to give people the prices and the work that they deserved.
Auto Doctor: The Prices
And he does. Let’s take a look at the break-down of the difference in prices for some of the work on my Subaru. The first listed price is Auto Doctor’s, and the second is a Subaru-specialist shop in Kirkland which originally diagnosed my Subie.
Auto Doctor: $1,471.45 (final price with taxes, including timing belt kit with water pump)
All Wheel Drive: $1,829.66 (quote, not including timing belt kit with water pump)
C/V Drive Axle Repair
Auto Doctor: $164.06 (final price with taxes)
All Wheel Drive: $256.74 (quote)
Rear Wheel Bearings
Auto Doctor: $447.98 (final price with taxes)
All Wheel Drive: $818.96 (quote)
Keep in mind that a quote from an auto shop is not the final price by any means, and repairs cost more at an auto shop if there is rust on the vehicle’s undercarriage (and yes, mine had some). Laing achieves his customer-friendly costs with a lower overhead than regular mechanic shops and a skill level that makes the work quick. And with Kameron Laing’s commitment to honesty, you’ll never pay for repairs that your car doesn’t need- and that in and of itself will save you a small fortune.
Automotive Nightmare Dispelled
Auto Doctor literally brought my Subaru back to life. Instead of focusing on the money they can get out of their customers, Auto Doctor hones in on real-time diagnostics, realistic prices, and reasonable deadlines. When they say that it will take two days to do your head gaskets and they give you an estimate for it, they mean it. If you have a new or used vehicle that needs maintenance in the greater Seattle area, there’s no better shop to call than Kameron Laing’s Auto Doctor. They’ve won me for life, and you’ll be shocked at how quickly they’ll win you too.