Redfield Machine

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Location
17 Arboretum Drive, Suite E
Hours
8:30-5:30 weekdays, closed weekends
Phone
(530) 756-4618

Redfield Machine is the sort of garage that doesn't need to advertise. Chances are if you are already aware of its existence it is because a customer has shared their discovery with you. What they have discovered is a well run small operation that treats their customers and their customer's cars very well. They come out as the top-rated mechanic in Davis according to [WWW]CarTalk's [WWW]Mechanix files.

In addition to performing repairs, Redfield Machine is an excellent place to tell you whether you're about to buy a lemon. For a little over $100, they'll perform a thorough diagnostic, inspecting everything from the exhaust system to the door handles.

The owner, Bob Redfield, is pensive and honest, a veteran, and he's the only Davis mechanic with a doctorate in Medieval and Spanish literature.

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2005-11-21 23:56:44   Bob Redfield should clone himself and start a nationwide chain of honest auto repair shops. When I lived in Santa Cruz, I made a point of scheduling my car maintenance around my visits to Davis so that I could have Redfield do the work. —GrahamFreeman


2005-12-13 19:17:26   I went to my Nissan dealer for my 150,000 mile check up. They charged me $500 to just check stuff, and then told me I needed about $1,000 worth of work done on my '93 Altima — a car which is barely worth $1,000. I took it to Bob and explained the situation. After examining the car, he determined what really needed to get done, and what didn't. Not only that, but he picked up some parts and showed me exactly how my car was wearing down, and what signs to look for to indicate immediate need of a fix. He was super friendly, and totally straight forward. He spent a lot of time with me on the phone and in person to make sure that I understood exactly what services I was choosing to do and choosing to skip. I'm never taking my car anywhere else. You'll want to send this guy an x-mas card every year after you meet him. —SamanthaGrant


2006-01-19 16:46:21   We've been taking our cars to Bob Redfield for several years. He's a great guy and his people do a solid job with your car. And he's upfront about what can wait, and what really needs to be done NOW. —RocksandDirt


2006-03-10   We took our Nissan to Redfield Machine for a second opinion after being quoted $1500 for repairs by the dealer. Not only did Mr. Redfield tell us that he found nothing that needed immediate attention, but he explained what sorts of sounds, drips and smells to watch out for to indicate when our car really needs repairs. Highly recommended for peace of mind and knowing that your car is in trustworthy hands. —LillianChow


2006-06-24 15:07:54   I thought "honest mechanic" was an oxymoron, but Bob Redfield changed my mind. He'll tell you exactly what's going on by giving you a cost breakdown and showing you the worn or damaged parts (if possible) and give you an explanation of why it happened. —ErikStaab


2006-07-19 09:43:43   This guy is so damn honest and good-natured it can almost be frustrating...I guess he's just always busy because he's good, but I swear I can be throwing business at him and he'll say to call around for a better deal! 0=P —JulieEickhof


2006-11-06 13:58:59   I read the comments on this page and called Redfield Machine. I agree with all other comments, he is an honest mechanic and a good person. I took my car thinking that I should change a part. He checked the car and explained me the situation. He even told me that I could do the job myself because it was simple and he didn't charge me for diagnosis although I ended up not changing the part. I'm definitely going to take my car to him if I need a repair in the future. —UmGul


2006-11-15 16:39:16   I always take my Civic to Mike Argo's Car Clinic, but my wife drives a Sentra and to this day struggles to find an economical and reliable repair service in Davis. We took the Sentra to Redfield Machine on account of all the acclaim he appears to get in Davis. Maybe Bob was having a bad day, but he came off as a bit aloof and hasty — not the "super-friendly" persona we were expecting. We left the car with him till the next day, and got charged $90 for replacing one battery terminal, which broke down to the part plus 1 hr of labor, which we felt was a bit excessive. One year later, the terminal is cracked but still working. Sorry to say, it wasn't as pleasant an experience as other customers seem to describe, and we continue to shop around elsewhere for a mechanic for the Sentra. —VivekMathrani


2007-05-29 17:33:34   I can't believe that Bob has a PhD in Spanish literature! He is a very interesting man. He is also a very good and honest mechanic. He is thorough and very attentive. Although, I do hope one day he invests in a phone that has an answering machine. —Bng


2007-11-14 16:53:42   Bob is super cool. He is a bit testy at times ("well, that's not our deal now, is it?") but he's 100% professional and accurate. I took my car to him *after* I bought it just to see what was coming next. Peace of mind is right... —DavidZetland


2007-12-16 16:35:32   Got a starter replaced here after consulting with J&J Auto Service. J&J said they only get parts from NAPA and the lowest priced one they can get is $270. I asked them if I can bring my own starter for them to replace. They said no because of reliability reasons. I was told Redfield is probably the only place in Davis that replaces part that you bring in. So I bought my Starter at Kragen for $120 and have Redfield replaced for $80 of labor. Redfield is very sincere about getting your car back to you as soon as possible too while I had to wait 1 week at J&J just to do a 15 minute diagnosis. Redfield is the cheaper, more honest, and quicker to get your car fixed —KaiWan


2007-12-17 08:18:49   George's Auto Repair will also install parts that the customer brings in... —MyaBrn


2008-03-10 15:17:41   I join all the compliments already given. I took my car for standard service in the agency, and they told me I need 1200$ worth of repairs. I took my car to Redfield for a second opinion and got an estimate of 0$. Bob said that "maybe, maybe" I might want to do a 200$ fix, but even that's not really needed. I don't know much about cars, but a mechanic that tells me that I don't need to do anything is something I appreciate. —libero


2008-06-24 01:29:36   I took my corolla to Redfield for the 120,000 mile service which it was 10,000 miles over due for. Bob was very honest the only thing that wasn't covered under the standerd service was the brakes. Or rather the lack of brake pads that need replacing. He gave an honest estimate and got things done the same day. I was very happy with the service. —johnharth


2009-01-29 12:28:43   I have had Bob Redfield work on both my old car and old truck and I appreciate the way he's always keeping my cost in mind. I never ever got the sense that he was trying to run up his bill. The opposite may be true: He's always suggesting ways I could save a few bucks by doing it myself. It's always pleasant to chat with him about cars or anything else. I trust him absolutely. That doesn't mean he's going to be perfect, but I get the sense he's proud of the work he does and stands behind it. —Cedric


2009-04-27 11:46:43   I've taken my truck there, and I have to say the only bad thing about going to Redfield is that it means my truck is broken. He's always polite and talkative. His estimates are always very accurate to the end cost, and always throws in little suggestions to you that you can do yourself. And the fact he has a Doctorate is a change of pace, along with him giving me the impression he's more a mechanic than a businessman and just enjoys doing it. —patrick82


2009-05-08 18:11:51   I took my car to Bob twice, the first time for a noise problem and the second time for changing the front rotors. Both times, he said it would be very easy to do it myself instead of spending over $200 in his shop. He also gave a lot of useful tips on how-to. So I ended up doing it myself and only spent $60 on a new pair of rotors from Kragen. After that, I took the old rotors to redfield and Bob showed me how warped it was and explained the possible cause. He is a super honest and interesting man. So far the most pleasant experience of ALL auto shops I've been to. Too bad that I'll move out of Davis and it'll be hard to find such a cool place in the new city. —plapla


2009-07-16 14:28:58   Bob is so cool. I called the other day to ask him to machine out a stripped stainless steel plug in my engine. Instead he told my how to do it myself. And it worked great! So cool. —rustysrustyduc


2009-08-10 18:12:06   I took my corolla to Redfield's shop today and had a great experience. The problem was the noise from the front wheels/axles. They performed a very thorough inspection and "took time" to explain it to me "very clearly". They were also very honest as Mr. Redfield and his mechanic also explained to me what could be done, what needed to be done and what could wait, and what I could fix by myself. Very high-rated and affordable services. Highly recommended! (His autoshop might be a little difficult to find for a non-local, but I do think it's worth travelling miles for such services. Anyway, it is located right next to Solano Park student housing and at the south end of Putah creek.) —superdavis


2009-08-17 16:49:54   Bob is great~Last Saturday, my car had a serious gas leakage on my way home from Sac airport. I towed my car directly to the shop. I went there this morning and Bob listened very carefully what happened. He suggested me do a quick check by myself even after filling the repair form. He helped me for a quick check and found it is just the fuel line is loose connected with the fuel filter. Now my car got fixed free of charge!!! I will definitely go to visit Bob again and highly recommend the shop to other people who do not want a rip-off for car repair. —echo


2009-10-14 12:35:04   I've used Bob for several years now (and have known may other people who have as well). All the good things people say are true. This is the kind of mechanic that has a hidden garage and doesn't advertise and still has as much business as he wants. What I find particularly great is that if it doesn't need doing, he doesn't do it. This who change all the hoses and belts just in case nonsense isn't his style. —mlgoodson


2010-03-28 11:13:02   Bob does great work. I've used him before when my car was not running correctly at all. I didn't have the time to do work myself. I asked him to even fashion an in-line fuel filter connection because I hated the hassle of the in-carb filter for my car. He made it happen and I was quite happy with the results. A tune up and filter line fabrication later, car ran like a champ. And he made suggestions about what I can repair and replace myself on my own time! Nobody does that!

A few months later, I feared that my head gasket had went. I told him the symptoms and he told me straight up that I was probably right about the head gasket being gone. Bob Redfield doesn't do head gasket jobs, but he can write up what he found and recommend other people in town that can do the job.

Thanks for the great work Bob. —MartySmith


2010-05-14 08:01:49   Like all the previous posts say, if you don't want to worry about getting ripped off and been looking for an great mechanic Bob Redfield is your man. Bob is part of a declining breed of mechanics which take pride in doing business the right way with honesty and integrity. —103


2010-10-11 01:15:14   There are very few people with whom I can simultaneously discuss car repair and the origin of the names of the days of the week in various languages. Bob Redfield is one of them. He's a very friendly and patient guy, great to talk with, always willing to explain what's going on in terms the customer can understand (I'm sure his experience as a teacher helps there), and, as far as I can tell, really knows what he's doing. Definitely my first choice anytime my car needs work. —BarnabasTruman


2010-12-01 10:00:45   I signed up for Davis Wiki just to do this review, that's how strongly I feel about this place and the owner. Mr. Redfield and his crew are top notch and I highly recommend them to any and everyone. I've lived all over and he's one of the few mechanics that I trust and feel is truly honest. He told me exactly what needed to be done on my car and even recommended going to other places for some of the repairs because they could do it cheaper than him. How many business owners do you know that will send your business elsewhere to help you out? I especially recommend Redfield Machine to women, who often get mistreated and ripped off in auto shops, and the inexperienced, who are also often taken advantage of. He's also a great guy with a good sense of humor and has led an interesting life. I also like to support Veteran-owned shops if I can, and he served his country honorably. —KenAsay


2011-04-24 20:56:18   Bob Redfield has been my uncle for 57 years. I was filled with pride as I read all the posts about his honesty and expertise. As I was growing up, Uncle Bob taught me SO much about machines and what made them tick. I would trust Bob Redfield with ANYTHING! —SteveBest


2012-01-24 13:57:47   Just had a great experience here. We drove our car in, expecting to drop it off and hear back by the end of the day what was wrong with it. Instead, they looked at it immediately and diagnosed the problem within five minutes. Bob then made a couple phone calls to figure out how much the part would be. When the answer was too high ($1200) he found a place in town that could solder in just the one essential piece for $140 and sent us there. I appreciate his honesty and his willingness to send business to other shops if he can't offer the best deal, and he's definitely the first person we'll go to in the future. —MeggoWaffle


2012-02-26 09:43:03   Bob Redfield is fantastic. We've been taking our cars to him for three years now, and have never once walked away dissatisfied. Instead, Bob has consistently delivered excellent service—whether it's through repair work done at the shop, telling us how to fix the problem ourselves, or informing us that a particular service wasn't required. We feel extremely lucky to have stumbled upon him (through Wiki and Yelp reviews). —S.O.S.


2012-06-13 15:17:28   Best shop in the area. Don't go anywhere else. Bob and Felipe are very honest and fair and they don't talk down to women like some shops do. I love these guys! —JessicaRoss


2012-06-25 22:31:45   Brought my car to Bob because my car was leaking power steering fluid. Like everybody else said, honest and polite man. He also pointed out to me a part on my car that I could replace myself rather than have them or other car shops do it. —EricSho


2012-07-18 11:16:02   Mr Redfield is a great guy! I brought my recently purchased F350 (7.3L diesel) into his shop for a used-car check, and he told me that his shop is probably not the place to do it, because to do a proper check, which should include a compressor check, would require big equipment and space to do it. It would be time consuming and costly to get it done at his shop. Nevertheless, we took my truck out for a drive to see if he can tell whether there is anything wrong with it based on the drive. After that, he went under my truck to look at the shaft, which he said had loose joints, but it was not bad enough to require replacing. Bob and Felipe then checked the engine oil and looked under my hood, where they identified a possible leak. He also took me to his own 7.3L diesel engine from an older Ford truck to show me what a fuel injector pump and fuel injectors look like. After all that (which took about an hour), he then tells me that all he can do for me is run an engine diagnostic test for $80, but then he also tells me that a Elm Ford (in Woodland) would likely be able to give a more complete diagnosis. He also referred me to Center City which he said had a bigger shop. So basically, he sent me away after spending an hour helping me understand my truck better, and he didn't charge me a thing. I feel so inspired by Bob's passion and honesty. It makes me want to be an automechanic myself... —EdLim


2012-12-03 14:44:26   First rate service, fast, and friendly. Can't say enough about how satisfied I am with Bob and Felipe. Should have listened to my dad years ago, when he told me ONLY to take my cars here. —CharlesJohnson


2014-10-06 15:31:00   Saw Bob for a window that wouldn't roll back up and some new car noise. Instead of charging us to have them figure stuff out, he talked with us and took a look with us around the car in case we could find anything that we could take care of ourself. He kept warning us that once he technically looks at it, charges start adding up. Once he saw that nothing was noticeably wrong, he told us not to worry about it. For the window, he recommended getting the switch (his guess of the problem) looked at from the dealer or doing a few steps to remedy it ourselves. So after taking it to the dealer that wanted over $100 to get the window back up, I took Bob's advice and checked it out myself. Easily figured out it was indeed just a broken switch, bought a new one for $30. Project finished. Great guy and business that values customers over money. Very hard to come by this kind of honesty. Highly recommended. —TylerBarzee

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