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Almaden Auto Repair

1680 Almaden Expy # D, San Jose, CA 95125

Overall Score

Hours of Operation

Mon - Fri:9:00am to 6:00pm
Sat:9:00am to 6:00pm

Message from the Shop

Almaden Auto Repair is an independently owned and operated full-service repair and maintenance facility. We use the latest diagnostic equipment to guarantee your vehicle is repaired or serviced properly and in a timely fashion. We only use quality replacement parts, and our technicians are ASE-certified.

Auto Makes We Service

Acura Audi BMW
Buick Cadillac Chevrolet
Chrysler Dodge Ford
GMC Geo Honda
Hummer Hyundai Infiniti
Isuzu Jaguar Jeep
Kia Land Rover Lexus
Lincoln Mazda Mercedes-Benz
Mercury Mini Mitsubishi
Nissan Oldsmobile Plymouth
Pontiac Porsche Saab
Saturn Scion Subaru
Suzuki Toyota Volkswagen

Quality Affiliations


AC/Heating Check Engine Light Diagnosis Oil Change & Lube
Scheduled Maintenance Service & Repair Timing Belts Transmission Repair


AAA Member Discount Child Friendly Early Bird Dropoff Extended/Evening Hours
Free Multi-Point Safety Inspection Open Saturday Senior Discount Service Guarantee
Shopping Nearby Store Towing Warranty Accepted

Customer Reviews (22 reviews)

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Almaden Auto Repair
April 09, 2013

Updated Review:
I decided to remove my review because even though we had to go back 3 times to fix the car, the last time the owner Thai really tried to do his best, and the car was fixed. I think the issue was that one of his mechanics did not do his job, and the one who ended up getting blamed was the owner.
I think after this incident, the quality control has probably improved, and if they did that's great because they know how to do the job, but quality control when returning the cars is something they should keep improving. Thanks Thai.

Part of old Review:
What is the point of having "friendly" service from owner if there is high lack of quality control!
Expect to pay more for every visit as their quality control is the worst we have ever seen, and expect to be returning more than once to for things that they should have find out on the first visit!

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Almaden Auto Repair
February 01, 2012

I took my SUV in for a brake inspection on October 15, 2011. The service was terrific! They were very professional and the overall service was excellent. The price for new front brakes and brake pads on the rear was fair as compared to other places in San Jose.

I would highly recommend Almaden Auto Repair for all auto repair needs.

Thanks so much!!


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Almaden Auto Repair
November 20, 2011

Thai was honest, fixed the car the same day and even came out on a Sunday to give us the keys. Met another man at the shop and he said he had been going their for years too and said Thai was the best.

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Almaden Auto Repair
May 12, 2011

Thai is excellent! I went in to have my power steering looked at. He identified the problem was my power steering belt, replaced the part, replaced several other belts, and did it all for under 100 dollars. The car runs perfectly now without the horrible noises my steering caused before. In and out within 1 day! Best auto service I have had in years! I highly recommend Almaden Auto Repair.

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Almaden Auto Repair
April 28, 2011

OUTSTANDING SERVICE!  I took our 2004 Toyota Sienna to Alamaden Auto Repair after getting a ridiculous quote from Capitol Toyota for brakes and a timing belt replacement.  We found Alamaden Auto Repair and couldn't be happier with their service.  I called Thai and he scheduled my appointment for the very next morning.  He quoted us less than half the price quoted by Capitol.  He only uses OEM parts and he made a point to show us the defective parts he removed to point out the wear.  The service was performed 100% to our satisfaction.  A copy of the invoice is automatically emailed to the customer.  Thai is an absolute gentlemen.  (My wife wanted to hug him!)  He is professional, polite, and soft-spoken.  We will be taking our car to Almaden for all future service.

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Almaden Auto Repair
April 11, 2011

I had my Honda Ridgeline truck serviced
for the 60,000 mile service at Almaden Auto Repair. I was charged less than what the dealership would charge me but
the work performed on my truck was poor
in that I did not get what I paid for and had to have some work done later. For the 60K service, tires are supposed to be rotated, they were not. I put a white dot on my driver side tire and that white dot was still showing when the work was finished. So the tires were not rotated. The owner told me after I brought it to his attention that the tires were not rotated because
there was more tread on the front tires than the back tires. But even if this were the case, the paperwork for the 60K service was checked stating the tires were rotated which they were not. The owner should have told me upfront that the tires were not rotated and why they were not rotated, and the paperwork should have never stated that the tires were rotated. I asked the owner about the transmission fluid, was it changed, since that is part of the 60K service. It was found out that it was not changed and I had to bring the truck back another day to have the transmission fluid changed which should have been done with the 60K service. The door hinges are supposed to be lubricated at the 60K service, but the hinges on my truck, I checked them and there was no lubrication applied. I believe the power steering fluid should be changed at the 60K service. Today I went to the Honda dealership to get an oil change and they checked some fluids and notified me that the power steering fluid was dirty and needs to be changed. It's sad
when one wants a 60K service and does not get what is supposed to be done in a 60K service. Many reviews I've read about this repair shop are very positive. Maybe it's easier when you need brakes and other kind of mechanical work done, but when it comes to a 60K service you don't really know if the mechanic is cutting corners and not really giving you what you paid for but yet goes ahead and checks everything off stating that all was done that comes with the 60K service. I had the same thing happen to me at a GMC dealership years ago when they did not rotate the tires as they claimed they did, because the mark I put on the driver side front tire was still there when the job was completed. I'm still looking for a good and HONEST mechanic to work on my vehicles but it seems they are hard to find. If you who have put a good review on this auto repair shop are happy with the work you have received, then great for you, myself, I will still be looking for a mechanic who really gives you everything that these 30K and 60K services require. If anyone knows of an honest mechanic let me know, I'm still looking for one, and because of my bad experience with Almaden Auto Repair, I will not take my
truck there anymore nor recommend this shop to anyone else.

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Almaden Auto Repair
December 13, 2010

I decided to use Thai and Almaden Auto Repair because of the stellar reviews I read about on Yelp (and the close proximity to my home). I realized I needed a new brake job on both front and rear axles and needed both belts to be replaced on my 2004 BMW 325i. I had received 2 other quotes (from Skip's Tire in San Jose and The Driving Machine in Cupertino) that were 25-50% higher that the quote that Thai gave me.Thai was very friendly and business-like and he answered all my questions to my satisfaction.. He gave me an excellent deal and clearly appreciated my business. After the work was finished, Thai showed me the old worn out parts. It has been a few weeks since the work has been done and my car runs (and brakes) exceptionally well. I highly recommend Thai and Almaden Auto Repair to anyone who desires quality auto repair at a great price!

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Almaden Auto Repair
December 07, 2010

If I could give them 10 stars I would!!! In the past few months, I have had a few problems with my Ford Excursion. Each one was unrelated. The mechanic that we use to use was no longer in business, so I went to Yelp for help. I saw the great reviews that Almaden Auto Repair received, so I gave them a call. Thai answered the phone, as he usually does, and immediately made me feel better. He said that he could take my car that morning. The car was fixed that afternoon. Thai called me with the price (which was very reasonable), then again as soon as the car was done. He also did an oil change and rotated the tires while he had the car. The next time I called (a couple months later), he knew exactly who I was. My Excursion would not go out of park. Thai tried to walk me through a quick fix over the phone, and gave me enough information, that I was able to explain it to the tow truck driver so that he was able to get the car to reverse out of my driveway. I took the car to Thai and he had the problem fixed in no time. His prices are great, his employees are great, and Thai is great. I would recommend Almaden Auto Repair to everyone!!

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Almaden Auto Repair
December 02, 2010

Took my car in for a tune-up and Thai went above and beyond my expectations, helping me out with a noise under the hood and showed my how to reset the service check counter. His estimate on the work was exactly what he predicted, I gladly paid him for his timely work! I'm definitely going back here if I have any future problems!

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Almaden Auto Repair
November 30, 2010

I brought my 88 Pontiac in here after it died on the freeway. I was skeptical that this place could fix it because a lot of parts for my car model are hard to find. Not only was Thai able to fix my car, but the service was amazing! I would not take my car to another auto repair in San Jose after coming here. it's simply the best around!

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Almaden Auto Repair
November 23, 2010

If you've given up hope of ever finding an "honest auto repair shop", stop right here! When I first found Thai's shop on yelp and read other customer reviews, I seriously thought he must pay his customers to write nice things about him. NOT SO. I could not have made a better choice for a reliable, capable auto repair shop than Almaden Auto Repair. We've lived here about a year now and have been taking our vehicles to Thai's shop the whole time. We first came to him with our older vehicle. We were preparing to sell and wanted to do so in good faith, so asked him to make all sorts of minor repairs (little plastic parts that had come loose or fallen off over the years inside the van, etc). We also addressed the one or two major repairs needed and were VERY pleased with the rates quoted and timely service executed just as promised. We had already had the van looked at by two other mechanics over the preceeding weeks/months, so we knew about what to expect in terms of cost. We were VERY pleasantly surprised by Thai's low rates for both parts and service. The total bill was much less than we anticipated, and we still corrected all the issues we intended to address before selling for top dollar. Thai even helped us discern which items we THOUGHT were important to the potential sale, but ultimately were not. He was fair & reasonable in every way - even tolerating our last-minute decision not to replace one item we'd asked him to order for us. He didn't even charge us for his inconvenience the way some places would. He just assured us that he was most interested in our long term business and it turns out that has clearly been the case. Thai is not looking to make a big profit on any one job. He's running a repair shop that services its customers fairly and in a timely manner. He provides top-notch work and has excellent knowledge of the automobile industry and mechanics of his business.

While we were there taking care of our first order of business, we discussed our new car options and various used cars we were considering for our next purchase. Thai offered great advice and offered a very competitive price to look over any vehicle we considered buying used. He gave us a lot of good feedback on which makes, models and years were wise choices for our family in terms of long term costs. Once we did purchase two new cars, he advised us to bring them to him for routine maintenance (oil changes, tire rotations, etc) and he would always tell us if we needed to address any warranty issues with the dealership. If we'd done this with the vehicle we were selling when we met Thai, we could have saved thousands of dollars over the life of that vehicle in repairs we ended up paying for because they went un-noticed until our warranty had just expired.

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Almaden Auto Repair
November 19, 2010

I can't begin to express the sincere appreciation I have for the folks over at Almaden Auto Repair, especially Thai. Without getting too wordy, my personal predicament prior to having my car towed by AAA to AAR yesterday was as follow: Recently laid off from work, 96 Saab needs starter replaced, can't afford car repair costs quoted from past "Saab Specialists", unemployed with baby #2 on the way, desperate and in dire need to have said car fixed in job search endeavor etc,. etc.

Enter Almaden Auto Repair and Thai. All I can say with warmest regards is THANK YOU! This is the most honest and caring group of auto professionals I have ever come upon in my life. It's all true! Thai listened, understood my current situation, was sincere and non-pressuring... simply put, just way cool; the best.

A special thanks to Thang who worked on my car and went above and beyond to get my car up and running again. Just take your car there and see for yourself. I will never take my car to another self proclaimed "Saab Specialist" again. Almaden Auto Repair is the place for me going forward.

I've already told all of my family and friends about the good people over at Almaden Auto Repair. Thanks again Thai and Thang!

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Almaden Auto Repair
November 14, 2010

The owner-operator, Thai, is competent, conscientious, honest, and thorough. The shop rates are reasonable. I own an old Mercury. It's hard to find parts for it, as the car is old and even the brand obsolete. Thai persisted for weeks until he found the correct air conditioner hose for the model, and got my A/C working just as the weather was getting hot. Thai even arranged for the delivery of my car to me after he had already left on vacation. Is there any wonder why Almaden Auto Repair is always so busy?

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Almaden Auto Repair
November 11, 2010

It's was a while ago. I was so frustrated with other shops around around the town for sticky brake on my Honda Accord Coupe. Sears Auto and the other person in Campbell area, who claims himself as a Honda specialist couldn't find the problem. The later guy charged me couple hundred bucks for wrong part assuming the issue was a pump, which wasn't the case. I got really frustrated. After reading good reviews about Almaden Auto on yelp, I decided just to give a try.

I went there and talked to Thai about my situation. He listened to me very attentively and decided to undertake a diagnostic evaluation. As a result, he found out the brake switch was installed wrongly to the degree it causes the brake applies while the car is running. He adjusted it right away and did a couple drive tests. Sticky Brake cleared and things turned into normal. Thank you Thai !!
He eventually checked all the brake system and recommended the rotors and shoes need to be replaced because they were affected by the heat caused by the sticky brake, but not urgent. Never pushed me for the sale. That is another genuine aspect I would consider from Thai.
The other thing I should mention is that he discovered ignition issue on my Honda. He did his research and found out that the part was recalled for the model and recommended to contact Honda. Though I later verified from Honda that the recall had already been filled, I appreciated Thai's extended assistance and information.

He is really a great guy with energetic team of mechanics, who perform their duties responsibly even when Thai is away. That is my observation.
It's my first choice for my Honda and my wife's Toyota. If you have any auto issues, it's worthwhile to first visit this shop and talk to Thai; I am pretty sure you won't be disappointed. They charge pretty fair for diagnostics services too.

Keep up your good service !!

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Almaden Auto Repair
November 08, 2010

Wow, I am so glad I found Thai through a friend of mine. Memorial day weekend on Saturday, I had a window that wouldn't go back up again. Mercedes dealership wanted to charge me $600, $200 for the part. My friend gave me Thai's number and I called him. He said he could fix it that day. I bought the part and took it over to him. Now this place is kinda isolated but The Plant is just down the street. I gave Thai the part and told him I was starving and he said he would take me to get lunch. After about 10 minutes, he gave me the keys to his car and told me different places that go eat. He said he would call me when my car was done, so just go eat lunch and relax. What a kind heart and soul of person, seriously. He is very polite, friendly, and just a wonderful person. My bill was $95 for the repair. Absolutely, I have found a new mechanic to take care of my problematic ML320.

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Almaden Auto Repair
November 05, 2010

I typically do not rate stuff - unless It was a very good experience. I took my Acura to Alamaden Auto Repair yesterday for a timing belt and had a great experience. As others have said - owner Thai is a great mechanic and runs a great shop. Being a 'weekend warrior' mechanic myself - I appreciated that Thai called me each time they encountered a worn or faulty component during tear down. In each case - he had the cost of the replacement part ready for me and didn't mark it up 100%! His prices are extremely resonable ($600 for timing belt replacement (incl all new belts and water pump) Vs $1200 at the dealer), is a good business man, and runs a pretty good shop) . After checking - the repair was clean and the car is running great - no issues. He even emailed me a PDF soft copy of my repair invoice this morning for my records (extra mile service). Thai and Almaden Auto Repair were a good find - I will surely tell friends about this shop

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Almaden Auto Repair
November 04, 2010

Outstanding service. I took my Toyota to Thai to check for noise problem. Thai accurately identified the rear differential issue. He explained what the problem was, why it happened, gave very reasonable estimate.
Thai not only fixed the problem but also showed defected old parts.
Three weeks later, Thai gave me a ring asking if the car is OK and offered a following up inspection. That was done with free of charge.
My car is running well and quiet now. I am so happy the service that provide. I definitely bring my car to Thai whenever it needs a service.
I also highly recommend Thai to all of my friends.
Thanks Thai for taking care of my Toyota.

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Almaden Auto Repair
November 03, 2010

I still cant believe how awesome of a guy Thai is. First off, $20 oil changes? This guy is a saint. My truck didn't start one morning and after checking the lights and radio i figured it was my starter and took into Thai's. He had the thing fixed and tested in under an hour. Because I was on a tight budget I was doing the work on my own. Thai called 3 times, once even during his Christmas vacation, to make sure I was alright. I finally had it towed over to Thais. He fixed the electrical problem, did an oil change, flushed and refilled my radiator and all for under $130.
I couldn't stress more how great of a place this is.

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Almaden Auto Repair
November 01, 2010

My whole family only gets our cars repaired by Almaden Auto Repair because Thai is reliable, honest, affordable, trustworthy, and the best at what he does. For over 5 years my family has referred every friend to Thai. I know that what ever he says needs to be done i trust his word and walk away knowing that my car will perform its best. Almaden Auto Repair always does a great job in taking care of my vehicle and my family. It recently expanded and is able to service more clients. After using Almaden Auto Repair you will not try anywhere else.

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Almaden Auto Repair
October 29, 2010

I took my BMW to Thai's shop a little over a month ago when my car died. He was very responsive to all of my questions and even offered to install a separate part free of labor (i got a fuel pump installed and he installed the fuel filter for free).

While waiting for the paperwork to be done, Thai offered me and my brother a complimentary soda (awesome!). I've recommended all of my friends to go to his shop since; and Thai even gave me business cards to hand out.

If i had to describe my experience with this auto shop i would have to say 'honest' and 'straightforward'.

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Almaden Auto Repair
October 28, 2010

I was looking for a good and trustworthy mechanic to take care of my 2004 Nissan Murano. I have taken my Dad's car (Toyota Camry) to this shop for a smog check a while ago. I remembered how wonderful the owner/mechanic was and also saw his good reviews from Yelp so I decided to go back for several services on my car.
Anh Thai was so warm, nice, polite, and professional. He test drove my car and confirmed the services that needed. He got me a very good price for the services (oil changed, brake fluid and power steering fluid flushed, and engine coolant drained and refilled.) Also, I asked Anh Thai to find out why my cigarette lighter didn't work. He found the problem (burnt fuse) and fixed it for free. I was pleasantly surprised how nice he was....
He also inspected my brakes and suggested not to change them yet. He offered to take a look at them 3 months after to see if they need to be replaced.
He called a few days later to make sure everything is working...
I really like this mechanic and have suggested him to my family and many of my friends and coworkers. I will definitely bring my Dad's and my cars to Anh Thai for all of the services from now on...

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Almaden Auto Repair
November 01, 2009

Whether you drive an import or domestic car, you want to take your vehicle here for service. The owner, Thai, has been working on cars for 20+ years. He is certified, totally genuine, honest and fastidious. He offers quality service, guarantees and all, at affordable prices.

I actually found them because I had a broken side-view mirror and motor. The dealership charged me $750 to fix it, but one of the guys there suggested I check out Almaden Auto Repair when I said I couldn't afford the high price. He told me he worked with Thai at another dealership years ago, and highly recommended him. Thai and his crew ended up fixing that same side-view mirror for $250!!

Don't waste your money at the dealerships or shops where they often overcharge and add on "repairs." I always feel like I can trust Almaden Auto Repair.

You may have a little bit of a wait because it's a smaller business but the service is definitely worth it.

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