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NATA releases 2024 mechanical labor rate survey results

The general shop labor rate in Oregon is about $151, up more than 25% from $120 in 2021; read more key findings

Gladstone, Ore.—In January and February of 2024, the Northwest Automotive Trades Association (NATA) distributed a labor rate survey to more than 500 shops throughout Oregon, both members and non-members of the association. More than 100 shops participated (including four from outside the regions listed in the breakdown, meaning those shops’ data is included only in the statewide figures).

Participating shops averaged just under seven full-time employees each, including an average of 4.3 full-time production employees and 2.5 full-time office staff. The survey includes the findings on a statewide and geographic market area basis.

Items of note include the following:

  • The general shop labor rate statewide is about $151, up more than 25% from $120 in 2021 when NATA conducted a similar survey. The average was somewhat higher among Portland area shops compared to elsewhere in the state.

  • Shops tend to charge slightly more than their general labor rate for diagnostic work. There is even more range in diagnostic rates shop to shop, from a low statewide of $95 to a high of $239 per hour.

  • Of shops charging a flat fee for an oil change (as about two-thirds of shops do), the average was $60, up nearly 18% since 2021. Of those charging based on a labor rate, the average labor rate was $90, up nearly 70% from three years ago (though the sample size for this category was quite small).

  • There is significant variance in how much shops mark-up prices on parts. Mark-up on used parts is fairly consistent across the state, with shops typically charging a customer about $156 for a used part that costs the shop $100; this has remained mostly unchanged since 2017. But the customer charge for a $100 new OEM part ranges from a low of $105 to a high of $250. The range in mark-up on aftermarket parts is even wider, from a low of $112 to a high of $242. (Some shops noted that some of their parts pricing is based on list prices for the parts).

  • More than one-third of shops statewide are not charging for hazardous waste disposal. Of those charging a flat-fee per work order for it, the statewide average is about $7, up about $3 from 2021.

  • There is also wide variation in how shops charge for shop supplies. The flat-fee used by some shops averages about $7, while other shops base the charge as a percentage of labor (typically between 4 and 5 percent, and often with a cap).

    The statewide data findings have a margin of error of about 10 percent. This means that, if the statewide average labor rate was found to be $100, there is 95% confidence that the actual average is between $90 and $110. Geographic regional data may have higher or lower margins of error based on sample size.

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