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Old 29th February 2016, 10:39   #1
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Default Oil change billing methods (Milliliters vs Liters)

Recently was going through the service bills of my fortuner which was maintained fully with the Toyota authorised service centres only and was shocked to find that oil changes were been billed per 100 ml and not as litres.

Now my point of concern is that all the service centres purchase engine oils or any oils in a bulk barrels or maximum in cans of 500 ml, 1 litres, 5 litres and so on for other oils. Being that the case, why are they billing it in 100 ml ie for 6.9 litres of oil they bill it as 69*100 ml packs! Doesn't that increase the end costing for customers? Would they be able to give any proof that in spite of the breaking down as 100 ml, the cost per litre would still be the same?

For a better understanding, let's assume that an 10 ml sachet of any shampoo costs Rs.3, actually it's only 8ml but for calculation purposes I've made it as 10 ml per sachet, the same shampoo doesn't cost Rs.300 per 1000ml bottle or rather it's only less than half of it.

Now imagine this scenario as the oil change billing, the ASS purchases engine oil @ Rs.200a litre( which would be more lower due to bulk purchase) and billing us @ Rs.25 per 100 ml.whereas if they had billed it as litres I would have ended up paying 1540 for 7 litres ( including 20 Rs profit per litre) and not 69*25 which sums up to Rs.1725 for 6.9 litres. Hence I not only lose 100 ml of oil , I also stand to lose 185Rs which is not fair.

In the first place, why should they be billing it as units of 100 ml when there purchase are in litres?

The costing used is only for illustration.

Can any one of the car gurus enlighten me whether my thinking is right or am I wrong in my understanding?
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Old 29th February 2016, 10:45   #2
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Default re: Oil change billing methods (Milliliters vs Liters)

@benzbala; Honda also bills in 100ml units. Just a convenient of billing sub litre quantities, since the normal oil for them comes in drums.
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Old 29th February 2016, 10:46   #3
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Default re: Oil change billing methods (Milliliters vs Liters)

I'm slightly confused by the post but I'll put forth what I think.

First off, are you fine paying for 7l if they put in just 6.3l; going by the bill /l rather /100ml logic?

I think the simpler reason why they charge oil /ml is so they can charge for the exact quantity used; down to 100ml multiples, of course.

All the Honda/Maruti/Hyundai service bills I've seen have had oil charged at values such as 4.3l, 2.8l and so on. So, effectively, charged in multiples of 100ml.
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Old 29th February 2016, 10:53   #4
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Default re: Oil change billing methods (Milliliters vs Liters)

Well I am guessing that yours is under the warranty period. I do not buy oil from the service centre and carry my own to them.
Pay only for the labour and bring your own oil. Thats the best practice that has served me good till now.
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Old 29th February 2016, 12:10   #5
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Default re: Oil change billing methods (Milliliters vs Liters)

The Honda authorised service centers bill the same way. I think at the end of the day what matters is the total cost one has paid for the quantity of oil filled and if that is more or less on par with a 4 litre can purchased outside. I have been getting my oil changes done at the Honda A.S.S only so far and have never had an issue with this.
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Old 29th February 2016, 13:09   #6
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Default re: Oil change billing methods (Milliliters vs Liters)

Agree with the responses here. Its best to measure it per 100ml (measuring more granularly would be overkill) so that the customer benefits. As some have mentioned, Honda also bills like this only.
Only in TATA i have found that they used to bill 4L for 3.7L of usage, which left me unhappy. Ideally one should only pay for what one consumes.
These large organizations generally buy in drums and not small packs of 1 or 5 litres.
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Old 29th February 2016, 14:19   #7
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Default re: Oil change billing methods (Milliliters vs Liters)

The responses seem to indicate that the original question is not fully understood.
Here is what (I think) the opening post tries to convey:

1. Why should the oil have a "price per 100ml"? Why can't it have a "price per liter"? You still can bill for 3.9 liters even if the unit price is "per liter" (A lot of Convenience Stores bill this way). I am more comfortable hearing "1000 Rs per liter" than "100 Rs per 100ml".
2. Typically, unit price per 100 ml would be greater than unit price per liter. (If I buy one liter pack of Fruti, I may pay only 100 Rs. But if I buy ten 100ml packs of Fruti, I may need to pay 120 Rs for the same total quantity.) Am I being fleeced by getting billed "per 100ml" rather than "per liter"?

Last edited by jinojohnt : 29th February 2016 at 14:27.
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Old 29th February 2016, 14:31   #8
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Default re: Oil change billing methods (Milliliters vs Liters)

Quote:
Originally Posted by jinojohnt View Post
2. Typically, unit price per 100 ml would be greater than unit price per liter. (If I buy one liter pack of Fruti, I may pay only 100 Rs. But if I buy ten 100ml packs of Fruti, I may need to pay 120 Rs for the same total quantity.) Am I being fleeced by getting billed "per 100ml"?
But then, you are assuming you will consume the entire 1l.

Would you be happy paying for 4l even though the engine took in only 3.7?

To understand what works out better: paying by 100ml (and hence, only for what you consume but potentially at a higher rate), or paying by litres (potentially at a lower rate, but paying for unused quantity), we'd need both prices. And manufacturers won't ideally give you that choice!
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Old 29th February 2016, 15:36   #9
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Default re: Oil change billing methods (Milliliters vs Liters)

Quote:
Originally Posted by libranof1987 View Post
But then, you are assuming you will consume the entire 1l.
I am not. Please see my point 1. You can still bill for 3.7 liters with a unit price per liter.
Quote:
Originally Posted by libranof1987 View Post
Would you be happy paying for 4l even though the engine took in only 3.7?
I would not be. I am not buying oil in one liter bottles. The workshop is pouring oil out from a 100 liter barrel.
Quote:
Originally Posted by libranof1987 View Post
To understand what works out better: paying by 100ml (and hence, only for what you consume but potentially at a higher rate), or paying by litres (potentially at a lower rate, but paying for unused quantity), we'd need both prices.
That would be the case if I buy sealed one liter oil bottles from the workshop, use part of the oil (3.7 liters), and take home the remaining (0.3 liters). As I said, that is not the case - the workshop is measuring out just the required quantity for my car. They are already charging retail price for the oil they buy in whole sale, so they shouldn't charge higher by billing in 100ml units.
PS:
Have you been billed for brake-fluid? They would have billed you per (whole) bottle of brake-fluid, and not per 100ml, because a bottle once opened is supposed to be discarded even if only half of it is used. Your logic may work for brake-fluid, as it is bought in bottles and not in barrels.

Last edited by jinojohnt : 29th February 2016 at 15:43.
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Old 29th February 2016, 23:08   #10
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Default re: Oil change billing methods (Milliliters vs Liters)

Whether they bill you in litres or in units of 100 ml it comes to the same thing. So for 4.2 litres (in my Toyota car) it is either 4.2 L OR 42 units. Either way they will just divide the **selling price/litre** (not cost price) by 10 to arrive at the 100 ml price.

Being a business undertaking with several crores of capital sunk in, they WILL want to make a profit on the oil (and on spares or other consumables) they sell. No surprises here. They are not obliged to provide us customers any proof of what it actually costs them. That's a trade secret.
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Old 1st March 2016, 04:29   #11
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Default re: Oil change billing methods (Milliliters vs Liters)

Your understanding of the 100ml sachets is perfectly fine.
Even I do feel the same. Please do re-check your bill and see the Tax amount.
If they charge tax on each 100 ml, then it is wrong.

Others, please correct if my understanding is incorrect.

Here is how Chevrolet charges. Per litre billing. Pretty clear bill. Tax the final amount. Even the Engine Coolant is billed similarly.

Oil change billing methods (Milliliters vs Liters)-img_20160301_042813.jpg

For the item Engine Oil, 3.75 is the litre used @ 293.45 per litre, equates to 1100.44. The tax is on this amount.

For the item Coolant, 4.74 is the litre used @ 262.01 per litre, equates to 1241.93. The tax is on this amount.

Off-topic, The coolant amount is a rip off I believe. Many of my friends laughed on this sky-rocket price :-(

Last edited by Soumyajit9 : 1st March 2016 at 04:38.
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Old 1st March 2016, 06:42   #12
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Originally Posted by Soumyajit9 View Post
For the item Coolant, 4.74 is the litre used @ 262.01 per litre, equates to 1241.93. The tax is on this amount.
That is a rip-off, indeed!

For my Swift I am charged Rs 250 per litre and they use up 2 litres so final amount is 500 bucks.

Looking at the consumption and usage, I guess they are filling the whole system with the concentrated coolant rather than diluting it (read with water) with the said ratio as per the manufacturer. Do check with your ASC on how they go about this?
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Old 1st March 2016, 06:49   #13
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Default re: Oil change billing methods (Milliliters vs Liters)

Quote:
Originally Posted by a4anurag View Post
That is a rip-off, indeed!

For my Swift I am charged Rs 250 per litre and they use up 2 litres so final amount is 500 bucks.

Looking at the consumption and usage, I guess they are filling the whole system with the concentrated coolant rather than diluting it (read with water) with the said ratio as per the manufacturer. Do check with your ASC on how they go about this?
Forgot to mention that this was a Coolant Replacement @ 50k.
I guess they flushed out the entire coolant and refilled fresh. Hence the 4.74 litre used.
Rs. 262 per litre for Chevy compared for Rs. 250 for Maruti seems like a premuim I am paying for an American brand
Good reason to switch to Maruti !
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Old 1st March 2016, 06:55   #14
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Originally Posted by Soumyajit9 View Post
Rs. 262 per litre for Chevy compared for Rs. 250 for Maruti seems like a premuim I am paying for an American brand
Good reason to switch to Maruti !
Lol.

But how can charge that way when only 'coolant' is to be charged?! When they have charged you for 4.7L for coolant, have they charged separately for distilled water?!

Maruti does replace the coolant every 20K kms (total refill).
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Old 1st March 2016, 12:37   #15
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Default Re: Oil change billing methods (Milliliters vs Liters)

A reason for billing in multiples of 100 ml could be that some software systems don't allow decimals for parts, just like it won't allow 1.5 air filters or 3.5 suspension dampers .

As long as the effective liter price is the same as MRP, I have no problem. Service stations buy engine oil by the drum. They'll charge you the same amount, whether the billing is done on the basis of ml or liters.
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