My shop charges $95 an hour. I don't own, I manage, used to turn wrenches, moved to making tickets. His $90 and hour is definitely the shop rate, he gets a fraction of that. With that in mind, how do you expect any mechanic to keep his lights on at home if every time you show up u take away any profit the shop makes from parts, short the tech labor money, and offer beer as a pat on the back?? Beer as payment is fine in your buddies garage. At a professional shop, the customer has to actually pay for their car to be worked on sometimes. 90% of my job is customer service, I give discounts, do simple tasks for free, give a crap ton of free advise, even for people who have no intention of becoming a customer. It's all part of the business. But when it gets down to it, when the car is in the shop, and it gets fixed, the tech deserves to get paid for that. His time is his money. He earns what he turns. So if he spent hours tracing wires, sorting out melted messes, and made preventive measures to keep it from happen in again, he should be paid for that. Now if he did not do anything he listed, if he wrote it up pretty and slapped a cps in the car, then you can be mad, and he shouldn't of lasted this long in the business.
Btw, in my shop, I give discounts all day long, but by policy, you bring your own parts, there is no labor discount, and there is no warranty on that job. I'm not picking my tech's pocket cause you don't want to pay a few bucks mark up on your oil filter.
Sorry if I'm a bit blunt, but I've starved, and watched other techs starve due to other shops discounting labor and taking it from the tech's paycheck. As well as multiple free comebacks cause the cheap junk parts the customer brought failed or make noise. I was relieved to find a shop that had been in business for 30 years with the same policies I like. My shop is fair, honest, gets great reviews, and not the cheapest in town. We love our customers, and respect their decision to come to a shop with high standards for a fair price.