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Paid for damaged part

Went to a small town garage. Bought a wheel bearing for them to replace. In the process of removing the stuck bearing from the knuckle they broke the tip off the collar of the knuckle. They charged me full price for a new knuckle when they were the ones who broke it. They said they gave me a “break” but i dont know where. Should i have to pay the full price if they were the ones that broke it?

Sometimes, things break when trying to get things apart with no negligence on the part of the mechanic. Perhaps they gave you a discount on labor? How old is the car and do you live where they use a lot of salt on the roads?

Some mechanics will refuse to install a customer-supplied part. It cuts into profits and increases their potential liability.


I have never broken any part of a steering knuckle replacing a wheel bearing.

I would say it depends on the mechanic and the tools they have at hand.



Without knowing the mechanics actual ability I would put this in the who knows category. This is one of those things in life that happen . I would not use the shop again and just move on.

I’d guess to get any relief in a court case for this you’d have to show the shop did something wrong, didn’t follow the accepted shop procedure, in the process of removing the bearing. On the other hand good customer relations should be important to the shop too, so some compromise that allows the shop to still make at least a small profit on the job is what I’d expect. One idea, instead of a new knuckle, what about a junk-yard knuckle for the replacement part? After all, the one they broke (or broke b/c it was defective or damaged) was a used one, not a new one. Did you purchase the replacement wheel bearing elsewhere?

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Sometimes stuff happens, sometimes more likely at one shop or another, but My thought water under the bridge now.

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It is pretty common to break parts that you would think of as breakable around here. The rust just locks up everything.

I don’t even remember why I wanted to remve part of the front subframe on my 92 Plymouth Voyager in the year 2000, but I gave up after I broke two high quality sockets on the first bolt! The attitude here is, well, it has to come off and if it breaks, it breaks.

Especially in an older car where rust & corrosion can create a joint stronger than a diamond while reducing the associated parts into something with the strength of corrugated paper.

Just replaced some struts and after PB Blaster, heat, impact gun and prying it became obvious that the only way the linkages were coming off were to pry 'til it broke or cut them off - same result either way.
Sounds like the mechanic actually may have done you a favor by giving you a “break”,

You’re expecting an awful lot from a shop that will install parts that you furnish.

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