Employee Ripped Off By Chain Shop - Helping Her Out

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Jul 6, 2003
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116
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Boise, ID
I guess a better question is how did we end up with all these thieves in the auto repair business? Why do they think it's OK to actually steal from customers on a daily basis? Our society must think it's OK, since we don't do anything about it.
 
Joined
Apr 27, 2012
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MA
I guess a better question is how did we end up with all these thieves in the auto repair business? Why do they think it's OK to actually steal from customers on a daily basis? Our society must think it's OK, since we don't do anything about it.
Well we kinda do, we don't patronize those stores and give them bad reviews. I guess one way to tell if it's a good place is if they're in business for a long while. And we don't call them stealerships for nothing.
 
Joined
Jan 24, 2013
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Upstate NY
I should clarify that not all Firestones will be that bad. I know the one by me seems to have better reviews than most. Unfortunately, the one she went to really pushes the upsells in a morally (and legally) questionable way. When service writers work on commission, what do you expect though?
Firestone told my mother that since her car had over 150k, she had to get the $110 pure synthetic oil change or else her engine would seize up. I know for a fact they did because that's absolutely what they told me when I asked them over the phone. The pomus *** over the counter said the only way they'd refund the money is if they drained all the oil out and then they would charge us the basic oil change fee. I was shaking at that point, I had to get out. Called the store in another town next to ours, spoke with manager for 10 seconds and he called her right back to say they reversed the charge.
Another funny story about the same store, was a co-worker crying in the breakroom, by herself. Sat down and she told me her car needed $1800 for repair. They told her she needed one of every **** thing they sold. All she wanted was an oil change, and they literally didn't even flinch when they tried to screw her. No ****ing shame.

EDIT: to add that literally the only thing she needed was a alignment, but she had no idea she needed one.
 
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Jan 2, 2004
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California
I don't know about comparisons, but I had two calls this week from people visiting dealers. One was my daughter and I was shocked my normally trustworthy Toyota dealer was trying to upsell her on some things for her Prius with 75k miles. The second was a friend from the Y at the local Nissan dealer with a laundry list for his 2016 Altima with 60k miles.

For my daughter's Prius, I said just get the oil change done. (And why aren't we doing it in my garage?) For the friend at the Y, I said do the CVT fluid, but see if your independent had a better deal. It was about $300 at the dealer. He was there for a recall. I said it would be a good idea to do the fluid, but maybe not there.

Both got the big push for fuel injector service, and so on. If it's not running bad, pass.

I suspect there is a bit of desperation since they are not prepping as many new cars AND parts are in short supply sometimes. But apparently questionable services seem to have plenty of parts and/or fluids available.
As long as the MOC/BG/Wynn’s man is making deliveries and there’s a spiff for the the techs involved, they’ll upsell superfluous services(easy money, like PDIs).
 
Joined
Nov 22, 2004
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Texas
I could write a book just on Firestone....I've seen it all and they are the absolute worst. I get somebody every week with a F/S printout of BS....biggest scam they pull is saying they can't honor their lifetime alignment unless $XXX of work is done 1st.
 
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Oct 23, 2017
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VA
As far as I know, they have only charged for work they have actually done. But using scare tactics to pressure her into work that was not at all necessary or as critical as they made it seem, they have been doing frequently, based on her description. She has been asking a lot more about her car and how things work. I was serious when I said this really opened her eyes. She seems like she has stepped into a whole new world. It's pretty cool.
Many of life's best lesson come with a price tag hanging on them.
It is good that she is more aware, she should ask to inspect the problem before she authorizes the work.
 
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Jan 13, 2016
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Northeast Nebraska
I could write a book just on Firestone....I've seen it all and they are the absolute worst. I get somebody every week with a F/S printout of BS....biggest scam they pull is saying they can't honor their lifetime alignment unless $XXX of work is done 1st.
Our Firestone has been in business for as long as I've lived here (1968) and I don't know how. Everyone knows they are a rip off and when ever I drive by their bays or empty. I think their main income is servicing farm equipment but not sure. They are not really a true Firestone but they have a sign that says GCR what ever that means. They always have oil specials on the back of receipts from the grocery store.
 
Joined
May 18, 2012
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Baltimore, Maryland, USA
I guess a better question is how did we end up with all these thieves in the auto repair business? Why do they think it's OK to actually steal from customers on a daily basis? Our society must think it's OK, since we don't do anything about it.

I'm convinced that a lot of places somehow get by without any repeat customers.
 
Joined
Feb 20, 2007
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6,257
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Southeast
Our FS has been good to me. A buddy of mine ran a cleaning franchise and had a bunch of those yellow focus wagons. He set up a contract with another FS shop and had no complaints. Of course, I’m a guy, and my friend was not a pushover - but both of these shops did us well.
 
Joined
Jun 26, 2003
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Illinois
Our FS has been good to me. A buddy of mine ran a cleaning franchise and had a bunch of those yellow focus wagons. He set up a contract with another FS shop and had no complaints. Of course, I’m a guy, and my friend was not a pushover - but both of these shops did us well.
And it's a pre-negotiated deal, so when the counterman sees it, they already know the car is getting a prescribed set of services.
 
Joined
Jan 2, 2004
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California
And it's a pre-negotiated deal, so when the counterman sees it, they already know the car is getting a prescribed set of services.
Firestone as well as Jiffy Lube, VIOC and Big O/Midas/Speedee Oil get a lot of fleet management contracts from Enterprise and WEX. That’s steady revenue but not profit. I think Enterprise, Hertz and Avis take their “local” cars into Jiffy Lube if they aren’t near a major airport with a maintenance shop(like SFO/OAK, LAX, ORD/MDW, JFK/EWR for example).

Uber brokered a discount for their drivers to go to Jiffy Lube and Firestone but the service advisors and techs there see green when a Uber-labeled car comes in for service.
 

mdtaylor86

Thread starter
Joined
May 3, 2015
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MD
Our FS has been good to me. A buddy of mine ran a cleaning franchise and had a bunch of those yellow focus wagons. He set up a contract with another FS shop and had no complaints. Of course, I’m a guy, and my friend was not a pushover - but both of these shops did us well.
Yeah, I don't think that's the same kind of situation. Service contracts with another business are one thing. Upselling to a 19-year-old woman is something else entirely. Plus I'm sure there are good people that work at some FS locations, just not a lot of them.
 

mdtaylor86

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May 3, 2015
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I'm convinced that a lot of places somehow get by without any repeat customers.
I see the same thing with a lot of big HVAC companies in my area. I'm in the service industry and see some of the things some of these companies do, and I'm convinced they can't possibly be retaining more than 15% of their customers unless they are scamming them into a contract with a minimum number of years pre-paid.
 
Joined
Jul 14, 2020
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South of Metro Atlanta
I hear this story all the time, not just from females.

It's pretty sickening. I've said my piece about how shops/techs need to learn to talk to customers....not making it sound like the car is about to fall apart if they don't have some stuff done (but this one sounds like it's about to). This is what kills me - this car has been religiously serviced at this place, but it needs a TON OF MAINTENANCE, all at the same time! BS!
 
Joined
Feb 2, 2012
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Nut farm
Firestone as well as Jiffy Lube, VIOC and Big O/Midas/Speedee Oil get a lot of fleet management contracts from Enterprise and WEX. That’s steady revenue but not profit. I think Enterprise, Hertz and Avis take their “local” cars into Jiffy Lube if they aren’t near a major airport with a maintenance shop(like SFO/OAK, LAX, ORD/MDW, JFK/EWR for example).

Uber brokered a discount for their drivers to go to Jiffy Lube and Firestone but the service advisors and techs there see green when a Uber-labeled car comes in for service.
Local Enterprise uses a Firestone shop for service-I have rented a couple cars with FS service stickers on the windshield.
 
Joined
Aug 15, 2020
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536
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Atlanta, GA
As for the EPAS. There are some hybrid systems out there that EPAS but just an electric pump vs belt driven pump but they still have fluid. My 2010 Mazda 3 had such a system and you could hear the high pitched electric pump whine anytime you turn the wheel, had a reservoir and all. Not sure about the Ford system but I know some other automakers use the hybrid systems of just an electric pump replacing the belt driven pump.
 
Joined
Jan 29, 2022
Messages
56
Good man. That crap is unethical and happens too often. I had a similar experience years ago when I first met the woman who is now my wife - an unethical shop taking advantage of her. I hope you will show this young lady how to read the maintenance schedule in the manual, so she can at least learn what is needed at what intervals and question any shop that says otherwise.
I don’t believe it’s unethical, most of these shops have Manufacturers Recommended Service Downloaded in their Systems !!
 

CKN

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Oct 14, 2014
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Utah
Threads like these are always popular so all the DIYers can have a "Kumbaya" moment.,,,,,,
 
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Jan 29, 2022
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My recommendation is Dobbs they were great for me. I lost all brakes on a 2005 Buick Century problem was rotted brake line. Oddly about 10 days before I’m sitting at a light and a COP in far right lane turns left in front of me while looking right at me. Hard brake stop. Then I go to pick my GF up from Church and some idiot backs out of space in front. I drive carefully home and peddle pressure is fading. Dobbs replaced line flushed system and bled for $200 !!
 
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