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What's a reasonable Price

Hi! I have a 2006 Pontiac Vibe that needs front brakes and rotors and a drive belt. My mechanic wants $588 for the brakes and rotors and $278 for the belt. Are those prices reasonable? Thanks a lot!

Forgot to mention that I live in the Washington DC area, in case that influences the price!

It Sounds High.

Make sure you know exactly what is supposed to be done (other things may be included) and call a couple other reputable shops in your area and compare prices.


When learning the exact specs of the job , also find out the parts brand and source.
I see Auto Zone parts for ;
$50 each , rotors.
$80, 60, or 40 for pads
$40 or 30 for a ‘‘fan’’ drive belt.

GM oe parts ; ( gm suggested retail )
$93.98 each rotors
$103.54 pads
$55.33 belt

Calculate with his hourly flat rate, shop supplies and tax.

It always has seemed a little strange to me that today, virtually ALL professionally done brake jobs always include/require new rotors…It has been my experience that as long as the pads are changed before metal to metal contact, the rotors remain serviceable for a long time…

Is the “you need new brake rotors” line done to CYA and avoid any possible “come back” situations while at the same time doubling or tripling the profit margin associated with brake jobs?

I just went to the Advance Auto Parts website and picked out the parts for your car. Here are the prices I came up with:

Wearever Brake Rotor (Part No: YH145294) - $67.98 ($33.99 x 2)
Wearever Gold Brake Pads (Part No: GNAD 923) - $35.99 for the set
Drive-Rite V-Ribbed Belt (Part No: 725K6) - $16.99

Parts Total: $120.96

There is also a promo code that currently gives you $40.00 off of an order of $110.00 or more (expires 01/31/2013), so you’d be looking at about $81.00 for the parts.

@Chabela I don’t know what level of mechanical aptitude you have, but I have changed my brakes and rotors several times, as well as my drive belt, so at least on my car (1998 Cadillac Seville) it’s not that difficult.

Basically, the price for the brakes is justified, but the price for the belt is way overpriced, UNLESS he is including a new tensioner.

@Chabela By “drive belt” are you speaking of the serpentine belt that drives the alternator and power steering pump? I’ve never heard it called that, but it could always be a DC term.

I wonder if the mechanic is speaking about the timing belt. $278 is too high for the serpentine belt, but cheap for the timing belt.

“drive belt” is an acceptable term for serpentine belt. I believe it’s a shortened form of “accessory drive belt”

Thank you so much for all of this information!! I am definitely going back with more clarifying questions. Interstingly, back in July when I had the car serviced for an oil change, I asked about the brakes, and they said that they were in good shape, and only needed a cleanup, if anything. Three months later, I got the recommendation to change brakes and rotors… So I’m definitely asking them if the rotors are absolutely necessary, or if they can be resurfaced… About the drive belt, I have no idea which one it is, so I will ask as well… I’m going to have to compare prices around, but I feel it’s so hard to fine another good/trusted mechanic.

I have been seeing/hearing the term “drive belt” used to describe the V-belt lately, but I haven’t seen it used in any official documentation. I’mm good with it, however. Nomenclatures change over time.

I haven’t seen a v-belt lately except on my 1972 International Cub riding mower.

The vibe has a timing chain. The rotors cost almost as much to resurface as to replace, just make sure the mechanic uses a quality rotor like a Wagner or Raybestoes.