Came across this article on the net... Avoid the Flat Rate Scam (Dealerships) Flat rate for Automotive Technicians was started in the 60's, as a way to prevent dealerships and garages from ripping off the customer. Fast forward 40 years and the opposite is now true. The advances in technology and technician training has made it where 80% of the time, the mechanic beats the projected book time, and now the customer is being ripped off again. For example, I've figured out how to change a heater core in a Toyota Camry, that book time says takes 13 hours, I can do it in 2, thanks to shortcuts I figured out. But the customer is still charged for 13 hours labor, and legally, shops can do this. I am too honest of a person to keep doing this to people. The flat rate system is a scam, on both ends, for the customer, AND the mechanic. It turns otherwise good techs into hacks that have to take shortcuts just to earn a paycheck. It's wrong, and immoral. Not to mention that you can't plan out your finances becuase you can never count on what your paycheck will be. One week you might flag 80 hours, next week only 40 if it's slow. You only come out ahead if you're flagging more hours than you work (which is also how the stealerships get away with not having to pay you overtime). This will never change until we as mechanics step up and start speaking out against this. For some reason, only the automotive world seems to still get away with it. Notice that in some independant shops, andmost heavy truck/fleet repair shops, they pay their mechanics by the hour, because they recognize quality over quantity. Greedy shop owners and dealerships are making mony hand over fist thanks to flate rate, at the expense of high tech turnover, and not giving a **** about customer satisfaction or retention rate. If I owned my own shop, I'd only pay my mechanics by the hour, and take solice in the fact that they're not rushing to complete a job, and that it's done right the first time. Safety is more important than profit in my opinion. That's why the Military doesn't use the flate rate system, because it doesn't work. The Flate Rate system needs to be exposed for scam that it is. We're Technicians, not sales people. It's time to take our profession back.