Ackerman's Volvo (Berkeley, CA)

Archived Q&A and Reviews

Dec 2009

Re: Volvo mechanic/shop needed
We've been very satisfied with Ackerman's Volvo on San Pablo in Berkeley. They are honest, fast, and reasonably priced. Owner of a '97 Volvo.

April 2008

Re: Repairs for old Volvo station wagon
No question, go to Ackerman's Volvo repair on San Pablo in Berkeley. They are great - a small shop that works exclusively on Volvos. I used to go to McKevitt, too, but Ackerman's is much less expensive, and I think they are more meticulous. Plus, it's a certified Green Business and they will donate 5% of your bill to a school or nonprofit organization. - 510-549-9330. Kim

April 2007

Re: Good Volvo mechanic in Berkeley
Ackerman's is an excellent volvo mechanic in Berkeley on 2220 San Pablo Ave, Talk to Bruce @ 510.549.9330, he has been our mechanic for 20+ years. Peace. Cheryl D.

Re: Good Volvo mechanic in Berkeley (April 2007)
I've been very pleased with Ackerman's; on more than one occasion they've deemed unnecessary work which was recommended by other mechanics. And they've been cheaper on the work they did. Also, they give 5% to the charity of your choice (in my case they cut a check to the school my children attend). The only drawback is the loaner situation, which is to rent from Enterprise up the street (adds 1/2 to 3/4 hour to the process) but if it's a minor maintenance, and I get there early, I stroll down to Cafe Trieste a couple blocks away and just wait. Aaron W
Re: Tuneup for a Volvo (June 2006)
We were very happy with Ackerman's Volvo shop on San Pablo in Berkeley. It is near the Omega Too store. I don't have the number handy (we don't have a Volvo anymore), but they were good, courteous, and I never felt ripped off. I never had a new problem crop up after taking my car there and the problem I went in for was always fixed to my satisfaction. They weren't cheap, but I thought the service was worth the price.
Ex Volvo Lady
Re: Tuneup for a Volvo (June 2006)
Try Ackerman's in Berkeley on San Pablo. They're very competent, and reasonably priced. They work on Volvos exclusively, and I'm sure they'd do a great job on yours
Ackerman's fan
Re: Super-competant Volvo repair service? (April 2005)
I just wanted to add one more comment in addition to those who recommended Ackerman's for Volvo repair. I have been very pleased with the service provided there. In addition, the owner, Bruce Ackerman, will donate 5% of the cost of your repair to the school of your choice. Just mention this at the time you pay for your repair and he cuts a check on the spot! Former Volvo owner
Re: Super-competant Volvo repair service? (April 2005)
When we had a Volvo, we were very pleased with Ackerman's on San Pablo Avenue in Berkeley. We tried a few other places before that and liked Ackerman's the best. They seemed to be very conscientious and were great to deal with. They are also a certified green business, if that matters at all. Plus, they have Peets in the waiting room -- another plus!
Re: Super-competant Volvo repair service? (April 2005)
We just sold our Volvo wagon, but when we did own a Volvo, we went to Ackerman's Service on San Pablo Ave in Berkeley. They are great - and far less expensive than servicing a Volvo at the dealership. I also think we got better service, as it's a small shop (Bruce, the owner, plus two full time mechanics) and they really go over the cars well. My overall satisfaction with Volvos was low, but we felt that Ackerman's did a great job with a car with a number of manufacturing flaws. As a matter of fact, about the only thing we miss about our Volvo wagon is the great service we got at Ackerman's! Satisfied Ackerman's Customer
Re: Super-competant Volvo repair service? (April 2005)
I highly recommend Ackerman's Volvo in Berkeley!510.549.9330
Re: Good Volvo mechanic in Berkeley (Feb 2005)
Ackerman's is the best. They are nice, honest and fair - even when my teenage stepdaughters bring the car in -- girls who practically wear signs saying ''rip me off.'' (Such as one mechanic elsewhere who shall remain nameless did when they brought the car in for an oil change, talking them into $500 worth of work the car didn't need.) Under Ackerman's care, our 1989 Volvo wagon runs great, and they never recommend anything it doesn't need, or overcharge. Fran
Re: Good Volvo mechanic in Berkeley (Feb 2005)
When we had a Volvo, we had good luck with Ackerman's on San Pablo Avenue in Berkeley. I think they were a bit pricier than other places, but we really trusted them. Very easy to talk to and work with. All of their employees were kind and articulate, too. As a female, I never felt creeped out or out of place in a stereotypical man's man kind of garage environment. Also, they are a certified green business by the city of Berkeley. We used Svensons prior to Ackermans and didn't dig them too much. They didn't give us very good advice, and they just weren't as easy to deal with as Ackerman's was.
Re: Mechanic to assess used Volvo (Nov 2003)
We go to Ackerman's in Berkeley on San Pablo. They have given us great service and fair pricing. We bought our car used from McKevitt's with an extended warranty; when we took it to Ackerman's, we let the owner, Bruce Ackerman, know about the extended warranty. At each tune up, when there is an item that he thinks will be covered, he points it out, but doesn't fix it so we can go to McKevitt's to have it taken care of under the warranty. I was ready to sell my 1998 wagon after dealing with McKevitt's service dept., but the service has been so good at Ackerman's, I'm hanging onto this car for now. He is much cheaper than the dealership for servicing. Happy Ackerman's Customer
Re: Mechanic to assess used Volvo (Nov 2003)
We started taking my stepdaughter's 1989 Volvo to Ackerman's in Berkeley (or is it Emeryville - I'm not sure) after my babysitter recommended them. My stepdaughter is 20 but looks like she's about 15, and I was impressed that Ackerman's not only did a very good job at a fair price, and quickly, but they treated her with respect and courtesy, which had NOT been the case at some other places she'd been to. Fran
Re: Mechanic to assess used Volvo (Nov 2003)
I recommend Ackerman's Volvo. 510-549-9330. Several years ago when we moved to the east bay we tried out four or five mechanics before finding Ackerman's Volvo for our 1984 station wagon. We've been happy with Bruce, Eric, and Adam, ever since. Ackerman's is a nice combination of really good mechanics, excellent diagnosticians, incredibly good customer service, and honest business practices. Bruce always tells me what needs to be fixed right away and what can wait. Their prices aren't cheap, however, I think in the long run I've saved money and headaches because of their competence and good advice. Now if we could find a shop as wonderful as Ackerman's for our non-Volvo car... Sojeila
We use Ackerman's. Bruce -the owner- runs the cleanest garage I've ever seen. All the people are nice, and they give us a ride to and from the house whenever we take the car in (a big plus for me). He also keeps a running list of stuff we need to get done on the car. Roberta
I highly recommend Ackerman's Volvo in Berkeley. Bruce Ackerman has been our Volvo mechanic since the mid 80's. We've seen him grow from a one man operation to the business he has today. The only that has changed is that he is even more service oriented than he was in the past. I trust him completely with his recommendations. He always gives a triage of what needs to be fixed right away and what can wait. (We have two used Volvos).
In January, my car broke down at 630pm in a not so good area. I called him to see if he was still at the shop. He was and gave me the code to his gate so the tow truck driver could drop off the car. I didn't need to show up until the car was fixed. This was helpful since I was pregnant and had my toddler with me.
Lastly, he has driven me home and picked me up when my husband couldn't help out with the transportation logistics. Good Luck Gloria
From: Katherine

I have to recommend my volvo mechanic--Bruce Ackerman, Ackerman's Volvo, 2220 San Pablo Avenue, 549-9330. There are a wealth of good volvo mechanics in the area, but I like him alot. He is such a professional, you can completely trust him with your car. His background is in racing volvos. He obviously really likes them. He is not cheap but his prices are competitive with others that specialize in volvos. He runs a responsible business (environmentally), and contributes to the Berkeley Education Fund which supports Berkeley public schools. I find him easy to talk to as well. I have an old 1978 volvo wagon that I have been slowly restoring (his word--I used to say fix) at his garage. It's been a choice between spending money on a newer model or spending money on repairs as they come along. It's been worth it so far. I've been enjoying this car and it's running great for an old car.

I am thinking about buying a used Volvo wagon. (I can't afford a new one.) Now that my daughter is older and larger, and I commute two hours a day, I think it might be nice to have a bigger car and one that has a reputation as a safe car. (I currently drive a small Ford wagon.) Here are my questions. If I buy an 89 to 93 Volvo wagon (740 or 940), will it last for another five years? Do these cars (740 & 940 wagons) require a lot of servicing and repair? Are they generally reliable? Does anyone have experience with buying a car through Autometrics (on San Pablo next to REI) or having a car serviced there? I looked at the UC Parents Web site, but didn't find Autometrics listed. I have already looked at the Web site for general information about used Volvos. I would appreciate any advice/recommendations about buying a used Volvo wagon and the general reliability of these cars. Heather

(See replies above under the various shops)