Thanks for your responses. After reading the great majority, I was beginning to feel that maybe I was not over charged. However, I took one of your pieces of advice and called two local NAPA stores to get a price. One quote was for $32, the other for $35 for the hose. I am left again wondering if I should go back to the garage owner. I don’t really expect he’ll refund me any money. And while it is about money, it’s also about being cheated by someone you thought you could trust. I had to decide where to have the car towed and thought I could trust this garage. My problem is not with labor charged. I can see it’s difficult to do the job on a front drive car with very little room, and I realize the garage will mark up the price on parts, but the difference between $35 and $216 is 83%. That’s quite a markup. I guess it’s obvious I won’t be taking my car back there or recommending it to anyone.
I had to have my car towed to local garage from a parking lot about 5 miles away when it started leaking a lot of coolant. I had feared it might be the water pump. Turns out it was a hole in the lower radiator hose on a 1999 Ford Taurus, and at first I was relieved to learn it was just the hose. But then when the garage owner called back, he told me the part alone cost $216 and labor was another 120 for a grand total of $374 with tax.
Afterward I checked the price of the part online (the prices ranged between $10 - $45), I began to suspect he took advantage of that I had to be towed in and that I would not be willing to have it towed somewhere else. I had taken my car there before and never felt ripped off. His prices were a little high, but not like this. He did show me the old hose with a metal tube and a flared end. The car has 140 K on it and I don’t doubt it had to be replaced, but cost of the part seems really high. Was I ripped off?