Diamond Certified Company Report

Kirberg Motors, Inc.

Diamond Certified Company Report

Kirberg Motors, Inc.

Diamond certified ratings dashboard
CUSTOMER SATISFACTION i
Customer LOYALTY i
Helpful Expertise i
Company Credentials i
  • Workers Compensation
  • Liability Insurance
  • License Verification
  • Business Practices
  • Current Complaint File
Phone SURVEY RESPONSES FROM 275 VERIFIED CUSTOMERS i

Lauretta S.

VERIFIED Kirberg Motors, Inc. CUSTOMER

1 of 275

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

He's wonderful. I have used them for years. I'm elderly and he takes care of me and is very accommodating. I couldn’t say enough about how great they are. He is a nice guy and his employees are just as nice. I wouldn’t go anywhere else.

I like the fact that he will give me transportation back and forth when I need my car serviced. If I have an emergency, he helps immediately and I don't have to wait around. They also provide a loaner vehicle if you need to keep your car there for a couple days.

Eva D.

VERIFIED Kirberg Motors, Inc. CUSTOMER

2 of 275

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

I completely trust them. As a woman, I know I can go into the shop and not feel uncomfortable or feel like they treat me any differently than they would treat a man.

They are very friendly, accommodating, and reliable. They do very good work and I trust my car in their hands.

Mary B.

VERIFIED Kirberg Motors, Inc. CUSTOMER

3 of 275

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They are completely, 100% honest.

They are qualified to work on European cars and they do a very good job in doing so.

Read All 275 Survey Responses at Ratings View
Diamond certified VIDEO PROFILE
Diamond certified company PROFILE

Ralph Kirberg, President

Kirberg Motors, Inc. is a San Francisco-based auto shop that provides complete mechanical repairs and maintenance services. The company works on all types of German automobiles, and it’s one of the first Bosch Authorized Service Centers in the United States.

President Ralph Kirberg began his career at Kirberg Motors as an apprentice technician under the tutelage of his father, Juergen, who founded the company in 1967. Mr. Kirberg took over ownership in 1983 and relocated the shop to its current location in Belmont. He credits Kirberg Motors’ success to its commitment to keeping up with advancements in auto technology and making customer satisfaction its top priority.

Kirberg Motors caters to a customer base that expects quality service and impeccable workmanship in a prompt and timely fashion, says Mr. Kirberg. “Our combination of products, services and purchase consultation makes us a convenient, knowledgeable, one-stop auto repair destination.” The company’s technicians educate clients, answer their questions and strive to make the repair process as convenient as possible. The shop provides pick-up and drop-off service, can arrange for car rentals, and works with customers’ insurance carriers.

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COMPANY REPORT NAVIGATION

Diamond Certified Companies are Rated Highest in Quality and Helpful Expertise.

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DIAMOND CERTIFIED RESEARCHED CAPABILITIES ON Kirberg Motors, Inc.

Locations

San Mateo County

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SERVICES PERFORMED

Mechanical Repair & Maintenance of all German Automobiles

BRANDS Supported
  • Mercedes-Benz

  • Porsche

  • Audi

  • Volkswagen

  • BMW

DIAMOND CERTIFIED RESEARCHED ARTICLES ON Kirberg Motors, Inc.

A look at Kirberg Motors’ service area

Company Profile

Kirberg Motors, Inc. is a San Francisco-based auto shop that provides complete mechanical repairs and maintenance services. The company works on all types of German automobiles, and it’s one of the first Bosch Authorized Service Centers in the United States.

President Ralph Kirberg began his career at Kirberg Motors as an apprentice technician under the tutelage of his father, Juergen, who founded the company in 1967. Mr. Kirberg took over ownership in 1983 and relocated the shop to its current location in Belmont. He credits Kirberg Motors’ success to its commitment to keeping up with advancements in auto technology and making customer satisfaction its top priority.

Kirberg Motors caters to a customer base that expects quality service and impeccable workmanship in a prompt and timely fashion, says Mr. Kirberg. “Our combination of products, services and purchase consultation makes us a convenient, knowledgeable, one-stop auto repair destination.” The company’s technicians educate clients, answer their questions and strive to make the repair process as convenient as possible. The shop provides pick-up and drop-off service, can arrange for car rentals, and works with customers’ insurance carriers.

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Company Philosophy

"Our philosophy is to provide the highest in customer satisfaction and added value in exchange for our customers' business. We want to establish a personal, one-on-one rapport with all our customers, educate them on the auto repair process, and earn their loyalty and referrals."

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Comparative Summary

Ralph Kirberg, owner and president of Kirberg Motors in Belmont, acknowledges his facility “isn’t exactly blessed with space.” But there’s a silver lining: There isn’t a lot of room to store vehicles overnight. “Your car is here in the morning and back to you in the afternoon,” he explains.

Specializing in German auto repair since opening in 1967, Kirberg Motors is a one-stop destination where car owners can receive mechanical repairs, engine management, diagnostics, air conditioning work, tire service, or just some straightforward advice. Cars are properly diagnosed the first time around and repaired to the highest standards, says Mr. Kirberg. “I educate my customers as much as possible,” he says. “In this industry, knowledge is king in most cases, and communication is its biggest downfall, so we concentrate on keeping our customers informed.”

The Kirberg family prides itself on adhering to the highest ethical standards, which include:

• Customer loyalty
• Honesty and high integrity
• Making every effort to understand customers’ needs and fulfill them
• Providing a safe and enjoyable work environment for employees
• Encouraging employees to stay current with latest technologies and techniques by enrolling them in industry and scholastic training programs
• Helping employees prosper and provide for their families

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Industry Info

Perform the suggested maintenance on your car, even if you think it’s unnecessary. With today’s cars, the benefits of regular maintenance aren’t always easy to detect. You can spend a few hundred dollars for a repair, yet the car doesn’t seem to run any differently than before. But Ralph Kirberg, owner of Kirberg Motors in Belmont, suggests you do the maintenance nonetheless.” Over the lifetime of your car, it’s still very much in your best interest,” he says.

Mr. Kirberg suggests you hire a mechanic who’s willing to communicate with you openly about your car. They should show you the parts that are malfunctioning and explain why they failed. The effect, he says, is “amazing. When people know what’s happening with their cars, they feel better about the repair process. The value is there.”

Mr. Kirberg also believes people should have at least some baseline knowledge about their car. An obvious starting point, one that few vehicle owners even bother with, is the owner’s manual. It contains a wealth of information, from tire pressures to typical service intervals. And it’s written for the uninitiated, not mechanics.

If possible, says Mr. Kirberg, take your car to a repair shop that specializes in your particular make and model. Every vehicle has its own idiosyncrasies that a specializing mechanic can pinpoint much more quickly. “If your technician isn’t as knowledgeable about your vehicle, or doesn’t have the proper tools, it’s going to take much more time,” he says.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Can you tell me how much a certain repair will cost?

A: Without examining your car, we can’t know its condition. We try to develop a rapport with customers so they become repeat visitors. Once that happens, and we really know your car, we can be much more specific about repair costs.

Q: Do you give free estimates?

A: Absolutely.

Q: How long can I go between oil changes?

A: For regular oil or petroleum-based oil, you should change it every six months or 5,000 miles. With synthetic oils, we generally recommend every 8,000 to 10,000 miles, depending on how you drive. Manufacturers often say longer, but those really long intervals are unhealthy, especially for short-range driving. It’s really about preventative maintenance—catching something before it becomes a problem.

Q: How important is tire pressure?

A: Very important. Unfortunately, most people aren’t very diligent about checking tire pressure on their own. The best plan is to set up your vehicle on a service program that’s conducive to the type of driving you do and the type of car you have. It’s just preventative maintenance, but it’s very important for fuel mileage, safety and cost, because low tires wear out much faster.

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SELECTED PHOTOS FROM Kirberg Motors, Inc.

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DIAMOND CERTIFIED EXPERT CONTRIBUTOR ADVICE & TIPS FROM Ralph Kirberg

Expert CONTRIBUTOR PROFILE
  • Ralph Kirberg is a 39-year veteran of the automotive industry and president of Kirberg Motors, Inc., a Diamond Certified company since 2009. He can be reached at (650) 469-3987 or by email.

Ralph Kirberg: Second Generation

By James Florence, Diamond Certified Resource Reporter

BELMONT – While many people inherit their family’s businesses, few can call themselves “second generation” both as business owners and U.S. citizens, but that’s exactly the case for Ralph Kirberg. “My father, Juergen, was working for Porsche in Germany when the company offered him an opportunity to immigrate to the United States,” he relates. “Later, when they decided to relocate their operations base to Los Angeles, he decided to stay in the Bay Area and open his own repair shop.” As a young man, Ralph’s aptitude for his father’s trade became quickly apparent. “I used to spend a lot of time hanging out at the shop, and I really took a shine to mechanical work, which led me to join the family business and eventually take it over.”

Today, as president of Kirberg Motors, Ralph says one of his favorite aspects of his job is keeping up with industry innovations. “The automotive business is never dull because the technology just keeps evolving. It’s a new game every day, which is why staying up-to-date with training and equipment is such a top priority.”

Ralph was born in Chicago, but he grew up in Belmont and eventually settled in Redwood Shores, where he still lives with his wife, Lisa. Outside of work, he says he can usually be found either on a lake or on the slopes, depending on the time of year. “I’m an avid sailor and skier. My wife and I actually have a place in South Lake Tahoe where we spend most weekends during the winter and summer.”

After 35 years in the auto repair industry, Ralph says the one thing he’d like to convey to consumers is the importance of finding a trustworthy mechanic. “Unfortunately, our industry is known for being driven by money rather than quality workmanship, but what it really comes down to is finding a shop that has your best interests in mind. A lot of times, people choose a shop because it’s cheaply priced or conveniently located, but that doesn’t mean they’re going to get good service. Considering the cost of auto repair, it’s worthwhile to do some research and find a shop you can trust.”

When asked what his future retirement might look like, Ralph says he’ll continue to keep himself occupied one way or another. “I’d definitely take advantage of the extra time to pursue some of the sports I enjoy, but I’d also like to get involved in some type of business venture, if only for brain stimulation. I may go into retail, just because I enjoy interacting with customers so much.”

Ask Me Anything!

Q: What was your first car?
A: A 1970 Volkswagen Beetle. I bought it for $200, rebuilt the engine and made it look as good as new.

Q: Reality TV or documentaries?
A: Documentaries.

Q: How do you like your eggs?
A: Over easy.

Q: What’s the most memorable thing a customer has ever said to you?
A: Someone left an online review that referred to me by saying, “He’s truly a God.” I had to laugh when I read that one.

Q: Who’s your favorite movie monster?
A: The title character from “Alien.”

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Expert articles
  • Understanding Dashboard Warning Lights

    BELMONT — There are a lot of warning lights on a vehicle’s dashboard, all of which help ensure safety on the road. While some are self-explanatory, others aren’t as obvious, so it’s important for drivers to acquaint themselves with the various warning lights and their functions. Here are some important ones to know:

    Battery warning light
    This light is in the shape of a car battery and usually indicates a problem with the alternator. Since the alternator recharges the battery, it’s important to directly address any issues because its failure can render your vehicle inoperable. If the battery light comes on and stays on while you’re driving, the most common cause is a broken alternator belt.

    Oil pressure warning light
    This light is in the shape of an old-fashioned oil can and indicates low engine oil pressure. When this light comes on, it’s crucial to immediately pull over and turn off your vehicle—if the engine runs out of oil, it can seize up and grind to a halt, resulting in extensive and costly repairs.

    “Check engine” light
    Also known as the “service engine soon” light, this warning light indicates a problem with the vehicle’s emission system. Numerous components can cause this light to turn on, so it’s important to have it checked out as soon as possible.

    Brake warning light
    In most cases, the purpose of this light is straightforward: to let you know your parking brake is on. However, if the light stays on after you’ve released the parking brake, it may indicate a low level of brake fluid in the master cylinder. This can compromise brake safety, so be sure to check your brake fluid level.

    Airbag warning light
    Often referred to as SRS, which stands for “supplemental restraint system,” this warning light usually indicates an issue with the vehicle’s airbags, whether a faulty deploy mechanism or a past-due expiration date (most airbags expire 10 to 15 years after the initial purchase).

    To better acquaint yourself with your vehicle’s dashboard warning lights, it’s a good idea to study your owner’s manual, which outlines each light and its purpose in detail.

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Expert video tip
  • Video: Dashboard Light Safety

    Complete Video Transcription:

    BELMONT — Host, Sarah Rutan: Ever wonder what all of those warning lights on your dashboard mean? Today we’re in Belmont with Diamond Certified Expert Contributor, Ralph Kirberg of Kirberg Motors to learn more.

    Diamond Certified Expert Contributor, Ralph Kirberg: Alright, do you know what all the warning lights on your dashboard mean? I’m using this BMW here as an example. If you’d like to take a look, what we have first off is the battery warning light, which indicates alternator charge. If that warning light is on, or you do not see if it all, there’s an indicator that there’s a possibility of alternator problems.

    Right next to it is the oil pressure warning, which is a very, very important light. If that light comes on, it could be some serious engine damage occurring. So, you want to shut the car off immediately. Not at the end of the block, immediately. Below it you’ll find service engine soon or a check engine light. These are emissions related faults in the system. It is one of the most common repairs that we see, literally daily. Numerous different components can turn this light on, but it’s very important for the emissions of the vehicle and the operation of the vehicle.

    Moving over, on this side here, we happen to have the seat belt warning, which is rather self explanatory. When I cycle the key here too, you’ll see above it there the brake warning, parking brake, which is obviously another straightforward item. But if you have brake warning or the traction control light on, this can indicate that there’s something in the electronics of the traction control or brake system. Very important to have that looked at immediately.

    Also, next to it here, they show a airbag warning. This is a little figure with the round seat belt around it. And that unit is obviously to tell you that there’s something in the SRS system that is being – giving you a problem. Once again, important to make sure that that gets checked out.

    With all these warning lights, and depending on which vehicle that we’re looking at, you want to make sure that you study your owner’s manual because the owner’s manual is the most important reference to all these warning lights. Be accustomed – you know, get accustomed to looking at that and then you’ll find that in some cases, it’s more minor. In other cases, it’s, you know, can possibly be something you want to take a look immediately. So, keep that in mind. Don’t forget to look at that owner’s manual. Thanks.

    Host, Sarah Rutan: To learn more from our local, top-rated companies, visit us at experts.diamondcertified.org.

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Kirberg Motors, Inc. WEBSITE AND EXTERNAL FEED
  • Kirberg Motors, Inc. SOCIAL MEDIA FEEDS
Diamond Certified RATINGS ON Kirberg Motors, Inc.
Diamond certified ratings dashboard
CUSTOMER SATISFACTION i
Customer LOYALTY i
Helpful Expertise i

Each surveyed customer was asked, “If you needed any helpful expertise, did this company provide that expertise?” To calculate this score, total “Yes” responses were divided by total responses (excluding those that stated they hadn’t needed any expertise).

Company Credentials i
  • Workers Compensation
  • Liability Insurance
  • License Verification
  • Business Practices
  • Current Complaint File
Phone SURVEY RESPONSES FROM 275 VERIFIED CUSTOMERS i
Kirberg Motors, Inc. : Average 9.1 out of 10 based on 275 unique customer surveys of customer satisfaction.

Lauretta S.

VERIFIED Kirberg Motors, Inc. CUSTOMER

1 of 275

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

He's wonderful. I have used them for years. I'm elderly and he takes care of me and is very accommodating. I couldn’t say enough about how great they are. He is a nice guy and his employees are just as nice. I wouldn’t go anywhere else.

I like the fact that he will give me transportation back and forth when I need my car serviced. If I have an emergency, he helps immediately and I don't have to wait around. They also provide a loaner vehicle if you need to keep your car there for a couple days.

Eva D.

VERIFIED Kirberg Motors, Inc. CUSTOMER

2 of 275

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

I completely trust them. As a woman, I know I can go into the shop and not feel uncomfortable or feel like they treat me any differently than they would treat a man.

They are very friendly, accommodating, and reliable. They do very good work and I trust my car in their hands.

Mary B.

VERIFIED Kirberg Motors, Inc. CUSTOMER

3 of 275

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They are completely, 100% honest.

They are qualified to work on European cars and they do a very good job in doing so.

Cliff R.

VERIFIED Kirberg Motors, Inc. CUSTOMER

4 of 275

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They are of German decent. If you have a German car this is the place to take it.

They get the job done and they don't try and sell you what you don't need. They are more reasonable than the dealerships. He is very good.

Larry W.

VERIFIED Kirberg Motors, Inc. CUSTOMER

5 of 275

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They really know their craft. They both have 911's from the 80's.

They do good work.

Dillon R.

VERIFIED Kirberg Motors, Inc. CUSTOMER

6 of 275

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

That the guy gave me a ride back to work, I thought that was pretty cool.

The head honcho, he is a good dude.

Simon A.

VERIFIED Kirberg Motors, Inc. CUSTOMER

7 of 275

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They are very accommodating, very good with European cars.

They are very approachable and explain if there is anything wrong.

Kelly J.

VERIFIED Kirberg Motors, Inc. CUSTOMER

8 of 275

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They take the time to explain what they have done or needs to be done. They are fair and treat you like family.

The level of service and expertise

Peggy D.

VERIFIED Kirberg Motors, Inc. CUSTOMER

9 of 275

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They're very good, trustworthy and do good work.

That they do good work

Bob E.

VERIFIED Kirberg Motors, Inc. CUSTOMER

10 of 275

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They are terrific.

They are honest and motivated by assisting their clientele.

Kilian V.

VERIFIED Kirberg Motors, Inc. CUSTOMER

11 of 275

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

For my Audi S4, they were very competent.

They had an idea to fix something on my S4 that was not common, it had some engine issues. The price was also reasonable.

Mike C.

VERIFIED Kirberg Motors, Inc. CUSTOMER

12 of 275

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They are a great place to work with.

They are honest and the prices are very fair.

Victor M.

VERIFIED Kirberg Motors, Inc. CUSTOMER

13 of 275

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

Go and take your car there if you need work done.

Reasonable prices, great work

Roger T.

VERIFIED Kirberg Motors, Inc. CUSTOMER

14 of 275

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They are well respected and trusted. They are honorable.

Great service and great people

Terrence L.

VERIFIED Kirberg Motors, Inc. CUSTOMER

15 of 275

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

Very good, efficient, fast and no problems, I would recommend them to others.

I liked the way he worked and the guys worked.

Hans S.

VERIFIED Kirberg Motors, Inc. CUSTOMER

16 of 275

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They are the best high end car service in the Bay Area. They really know what they are doing. They have even given me advice over the phone. They will shop all over the world to get the parts needed for your car.

There is nothing that I don't like. They are courteous, have pride in their work. It's like they are personal friends of mine, that's how it feels. They are also professional.

Donald H.

VERIFIED Kirberg Motors, Inc. CUSTOMER

17 of 275

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They are very friendly and responsive. They are willing to respond to a mistake non-defensively and in a helpful manner.

I can stop in without an appointment and they would take a look at my car.

Kristy P.

VERIFIED Kirberg Motors, Inc. CUSTOMER

18 of 275

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They are honest, fair and helpful. They even helped my kids that live out of the area find good mechanics.

Their honesty and ability to explain everything

Lauretta S.

VERIFIED Kirberg Motors, Inc. CUSTOMER

19 of 275

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

Number one, they are honest. They are dependable and always, always pleasant. They go out of their way to be helpful.

I like their service, they get me in right away.

Andrew L.

VERIFIED Kirberg Motors, Inc. CUSTOMER

20 of 275

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

Reliable and quality service

Professional, knowledge of European cars

Read All 275 Survey Responses at Ratings View