--Originally posted on yelp here: http://www.yelp.com/biz/imported-motor-cars-santee-2 I first met Pete, the owner, back in May when I was in the market for a run-around car to use for my commute to work. I bought a 2002 Volvo S40 that he had just brought back to life 2 weeks prior. Pete was supremely kind and allowed me to write a list of anything I found wrong with the car and he promised to take care of any issues I reported. Pete kept his word and fixed a total of 9 minor issues, to include replacing the headliner, and he didn't charge me for any of it. My wife and I have come to his shop on separate visits, without notice, and Pete consistently gives us his undivided attention and assistance. My Volvo now runs as if it were NEW, I literally only know it shifts when the RPM's go down---the transmission is that smooth! My wife and I even brought our 2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee(Our baby and Still under Warranty) to Pete for her 50,000 mile tune-up, and my wife has not stopped commenting on the fact that her car feels more responsive and how she wants to bring the car to Pete from now on. Pete, hands-down, is the most AMAZING mechanic I've ever come across. Not only is he an honest businessman, but he has completely earned our family's trust and is a remarkable friend. A Few Observations: Genuine Parts, Genuine labor. Pete purchases REAL, Genuine parts from the manufacturer to fix his vehicles. What I love about Pete is that he wont simply resort to buying parts left and right when the parts in the car are still good. If it's fixable, he will fix it instead of replacing it. The Right Tools for the Right Job. From what Pete has showed me, he has various BRAND-specific diagnostic scanners and trouble-shooting devices as well as specific tools for specific jobs purchased directly from manufacturers like VOLVO and BMW that I have seen. Professionally-Educated & Experienced Mechanic. Pete not only has his degree in Automotive Repair, but he has genuine-exclusive certifications from companies like BMW, AUDI, Jaguar, VOLVO, FORD, etc. He specializes in Mercedes-Benz, BMW, Jaguar, AUDI, VOLVO, Volkswagen, FIAT and Japanese cars, however his 30-years experience pretty much covers the rest . He has a long list of qualifications and a lot of them are on display, lining the walls around the front desk. In summary, we have made Pete our exclusive mechanic and living on the border of Santee and Lakeside we are happy to have found someone so reliable, so close to our home. Even if you don't live near this place, Its better to drive one time to a trusted mechanic than to split that time between many would-be mechanics.
I was recommended to East County Alignment in 2008 by word of mouth. Over these 8 years I have learned so much about cars. These guy are SO FAR ahead of the industry. I was EXTREMELY lucky in finding these guys. The shop is purposely set up for us to actually see your vehicle in work. Honestly guys, best part is that OPEN feeling, like they have nothing to hide. No where near similar to dropping your car off at a dealer, not knowing where it went. Intentionally setting the shop up to block employee work visibility for a reason. Why? Anyways, after 8 years I am obligated to take this time writing a review because of how professional and honest these guys have been ever since my 1st visit in 2008. Everyone deserves to know as I did how lucky you will be trying ECA. Believe me, I'm writing this for all you that helped me in the past, thank you. 8 years later its amazing how they continue using the same ethics and honesty I couldn't find anywhere prior. If theres an issue with your vehicle they do the best job of, not only showing you the problem but better yet, explaining everything so cleary by the obvious knowledge that flows through that shop. I've seen and heard plenty just being around that place waiting for my car. Observing these guys at work is unbelievable. Even Jake and Anna are so pleasant inside, it's a complete circle of professionalism. I've never felt a single bit of pressure to purchase anything and they estimate jobs upon your request. Unlike ANY AUTOMOTIVE shop I've been to. I can comfortably leave without feeling obligated to repairs. They are so busy every visit I'm in with other Dealershipship or body shop problem vehicles. BEST part it's entirely family owned and been in Santee 40 years. The owner Kevin Healy has a son that's been mainly behind the shop in recent years. This shop is obviously built on ethics and his son Jake follows perfectly. Jake previously fixed a problem another shop made without $$ or expectations of future work on my 1st visit. I didn't even know these guys yet. Enough said THIS SHOP DESERVES to be here 40 years and at the look of it, his son Jake has easily another 40 years. Much respect EAST COUNTY ALIGNMENT & BRAKE! Make your appointment, go in their and feel them out for yourself, you will not be disappointed..Safest auto shop I've been too.
I was recommended to East County Alignment by Discount Tire because my tires were wearing terribly. They said I needed an alignment so I set an appointment. I was expecting a shop with gas smell, grease on tables or other shop debris. Boy was I wrong. Not only is it extremely clean (bathroom included), they have a TV bigger than my personal one and also a Keurig machine. Anyways, I showed up for my appointment and was HAPPILY greeted by Nicole first, then Jake. I explained my tire wear, Jake made notes, then walked me over to the waiting room and hooked me up personally to their customer wi-fi. I needed the help. Thank You! Remember, I'm female and was ALWAYS told NEVER go to an automotive shop without a man present. My husband was working so I was forced to go in alone. I felt VERY comfortable with everyone there especially Jake, the manager. He kept me informed to exactly what was causing my tire wear and had a couple questions about the car. Once Jake came to understand I wasn't too car fluent, he asked to talk to my husband which I appreciated. He took time out on an obvious busy day to do that. I called him, Jake took over, explained the car tire wear issues in detail, then handed the phone back to me. Instantly my husband told me, "that's a good shop!" and was overly impressed by Jakes knowledge. I was recommended to Roger Daniels Alignment last time and felt extremely nervous the whole time. They tried selling me $1000 in repairs that East County Alignment one year later said could wait another 6-12 more months. Jake even explained how it may not be worth doing the big repairs anyhow because I might not see the return on my investment. I was selling my car next year. In the end it took an hour total, solved my tire wear problems and made me feel VERY comfortable. THANK YOU JAKE AND NICOLE. This place runs a great system and deserves the BEST review.
These guys aren't even in the same class as other automotive shops or dealer facilities. Absolutely crazy the amount of knowledge these guys have. They can tell you everything you need to know about why your or any tire is wearing the way it is. I can't even believe this shop only recieved 3.5 stars on other sites I glanced at. ONCE AGAIN, THIS SHOP IS HANDS DOWN THE BEST ANYWHERE. I'm from Texas, have been to many automotive shops along the way. I have a personal mechanic at home. I came to San Diego for the navy. Got here and was recommended to this place East County Alignment 25 miles away but by many of my navy buddies. I've had a problem no one can pin point at home, not even my mechanic. I did some before it took the drive..I was reluctant to come at first based mainly on this lame reviews but I can tell the difference in a ethical review or not..Anyways d*#m was I suprised and happy I made it. Not only 15-25 minutes in one of the mechanics Moses knew exactly what it was, torqed it down, aligned my truck and was on my way. I contacted my mechanic at home let him know, he was floored, couldn't believe noise is finally gone. I noticed how big their shop was and can't believe how little reviews they had so on my way out I recommended they tell their customers about online reviews like all other shops do. The manager told me he appreciated my business and thats more than any review. If im happy that s all he cared about. He also made it clear, we can do what we want but he is not going to ask me. I guess that is right. I took the time to write this because they are a shop people need to know about. You can trust them and that is something hard to come by these days
OUTSTANDING SHOP!!!!I have a 2008 Jeep Wrangler that had developed the dreaded "Death Wobble". I had been to two other shops and replaced the Drag Link, Track Bar and Bolts, Tie Rod and heave duty Ends, Steering Stabilizer, Sway Bar Bushings, Upper and Lower Control Arms and Bushings and a new set of tires, mounted and balanced. Two different shops doing an alignment and nothing worked. I dropped the Jeep off at 8:00 am on April 7, 2014. By 8:45 I got a call with a diagnosis and plan to repair. The steering box needed to be tightened up; one of the tie rod bolts was not torqued properly and the brake rotors were warped as well as the steering wheel loose. I picked the Jeep up at 4:00 and before getting out of the parking lot I could tell the difference. The steering was tight and firm. No movement in the steering wheel. I put the Jeep through its paces on the trip home and no a hint of wobble. The employees were professional and friendly. The cost of the repair was outstanding. I would highly recommend EAST COUNTY ALIGNMENT!!!!
Advanced Automatic Transmissions
To anyone interested in repair work at Advanced Automatic Transmissions. I will say this. Because of exceptional service and courtesy extended, to me, by Mr. Metelski, I found it necessary to write this letter of commendation. It is my opinion that Mr. Metelski is a man of integrity, honesty and morality. Not only did he make much effort so to solve my problem, he shopped the "market" to find the price(s) so to keep the cost of my repairs at a minimum and, incidentally, very close to his estimated cost for repairs. Also, he kept in contact with me so I would know the costs and progress of the repairs. Very seldom does one receive this type of service from an auto garage repair shop.