Swede's Auto Repair

  • 3.9 of 5 stars
9 reviews

1725 Se Franklin St, #C, Portland, OR 97202, us

(503) 232-5244


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They are always honest
They are competent
Their repair price is reasonable
They complete the work in a timely manner
They respond well when they screw something up
They take the time to explain the problems and necessary repairs
They treat male and female customers in the same manner
They are always honest
I would use this mechanic again
I would recommend this mechanic to others
They fix the problem the first time
The shop is located in a safe neighborhood
The hours of operation are convenient for customers
They are near public transportation (or provide loaners, shuttle bus, rides as needed)
Jan 03, 1998
A tiny, one-man shop. Ulf is an authentic lover of Volvos. He kept me and my '69 running for years, then was gracious enough to tell me that there was nothing else left to be done to save. He was also honest enough to warn me away from buying a Saab to replace it.
Apr 10, 2000
Ulf was the third Volvo specialist to look at my '86 240, the least expensive and the first to detect a pivotal engine problem. I spent a lot of money on the wrong things before coming to Ulf. He is always busy yet has volunteered a lot of information over the phone, and I'm convinced he knows more about Volvos than anyone else in town, in particular older models (122s, 1800s etc.). He's always busy, generally booked 3-4 weeks in advance (he's that popular), so he can't usually do things right away. But he doesn't need any more work, so I know he won't do any more than appropriate!
Nov 07, 2001
I've talked to Ulf twice and had him work on my car once. It was a body problem (the hood) and he wasn't able to fix it totally, but he charged me nothing for it and even added power steering fluid. He's honest and absolutely more than fair.
Dec 14, 2001
We live in Portland, OR - our Saab 900 Turbo broke down in Olympia, WA - broken lower control arm. Towed it to Firestone shop nearby (insurance only covered 10 miles), they called the next day and said "oh you got a $1,000 worth of repairs on here", etc. I called Swede's Auto Repair back in Portland (we'd had a battery replaced there once, only thing needed since we bought the car), he said it would be about $300-350 (part is $225, I looked it up myself) and didn't make up any bullshit about how this and that is also broken (and he was right, there wasn't, even though he hadn't looked at the car), and when I asked how long it would take he even said "it's a pretty straightforward deal...it could take under an hour, or a little over..." So we towed the car all the way back to Portland on our AAA card. He was very friendly, but non- intrusive, did nothing more than was necessary, when I came to pick up the car and asked him about another problem, a windshield wiper which had been broken for a month, he said I could fix it myself and told me what I basically had to do, even made a diagram...total repair cost: $353.
Jan 08, 2002
I fell in love with a used Saab when I was looking for a car but was aprehensive about buying it since my friends who own Saabs warned me about repair bills. I previously owned a Honda Civic and rarely spent much to fix it. Right after I bought the Saab, I took it to Ulf to ask him about things that might need to be fixed so I could start to plan my potential repair budget. What I discovered amazed me; he quoted estimates for a starter and clutch that were comparable to what I had paid for the same parts on my '86 Honda. Ulf also knows Saabs so well that when I have asked him about a noise, he told me that it's just something typical of the model I have and nothing to worry about, instead of taking advantage of a hypochondriac driver.
Jan 23, 2004
Ulf is a likeable guy and a reasonable mechanic. He did some work on my old SAAB 900S. He put in a used trannie (transaxel) for $2K - about what the car was worth at the time. No guarantee. The thing slipped out of reverse constantly. He passed judgement on the breaks as adequate and not long after they seized up and I junked the car. I rather feel that his is a shoestring operation and that he is less than candide with customers wrt whether their car merits repair. In another state I had a drive-to-your problem mechanic, whose work was much more reliable and effective. Before working with Ulf do a reality check on the value of your vehicle. I suspect he will gladly do any work without consideration of impact on the customer.
May 07, 2004
I brought my 82 Volvo 240 in twice for the same problem - the car would stop running after it warmed up. The mechanic said he checked electrical connections and fuel pressure, etc but couldn't find any problems. We brought it back because the problem recurred (after a $96 charge). The car did not make it the full 3 miles home after the second trip to Swedes (a $56 charge). After the car was cold, I started it and drove it home. Frustrated, I looked at the car myself (a last ditch effort before donation.) I found a disconnected vacuum line. I repaired it myself and the car seems to be OK now. The mechanic is nice, but he seems awefully busy, though. I'm not sure how he missed the disconnected vacuum line after keeping the car for a total of five or six days.
Nov 07, 2011
May 11, 2007
  • N/A
Ulf is a very nice gentleman but we had to take our car elsewhere to get the repairs done correctly. He had two chances to fix the electrical problems and failed both times. I would not recommend getting any electrical work done by him.

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