I once had a locally-owned auto shop tell me that even though they're the ones who screwed up the balance on my tires, I would still have to pay over $50 to get them balanced properly. Poor college student at the time that I was, that equaled a hell no. The guy also told me not to worry about it, my car would be just fine with a little bit of shaking on the steering wheel. And (this was my own fault, admittedly) since I didn't try anywhere else to get it fixed, I ended up driving on the bad tires for over a month. Unbalanced as they were, the tires apparently wore down in such a way that it did Very Bad Things. The Very Bad Things came to a head when I was driving home from work at 12:30 in the morning on the interstate (70 mph). A steel band inside the tire snapped and tore up the front driver-side fender, and my car was weaving all over the road before I was able to slow down enough to control it. I just thank God there were no other cars around at that moment.
First thing the next day my dad went with me to the auto shop, and the owner this time was actually there for once. He's been a friend of my dad's since we moved to town over 10 years ago, so he took a look at the tires himself. From what I could understand, the other front tire on my car was about to blow just like the first one did, and even my back tires were showing irregular wear because of the way they were balanced. After hearing what I was told about having to pay so much money to get them rebalanced, he promptly fired the employee that had told me such BS, then replaced all my tires out of his own pocket. Car insurance covered the repairs to the car's body.
I found out later that the fired employee had charged several other people money for services, such as tire balancing, the shop normally did free, and he would pocket the money. Not too long ago I heard that he was sent to prison for embezzlement. Ha.
Anyway, so I wound up getting good service from the manager, and for once my car insurance was useful, but still...the entire episode just sucked.