Need advice. Wal Mart double gasketed the oil filter and the car lost it's oil on the road!

Joined
May 29, 2005
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Ozark Mountains
An acquaintance of my wife took her 98 Honda Accord to a local Wal Mart and had this experience. She called them right away and they said they would pay for her to have it towed back to the store. She did and they found the two gaskets and told her about it. I think she said they too pictures or video's of the problem.

Then they put in new oil and took out the second gasket and sent her off and said bring it back soon and have the oil changed again to get out any metal shavings or something like that. I was surprised that it would start at all.

I am getting the story through my wife but the car was making a bad noise and then all the dash lights came on and it stopped. She had just left the Wal Mart a few miles before.

Seems like Wal Mart should at least pay for her to have a rebuilt engine.

Does anyone have any experience with a case like this with Wal Mart?

Thanks, guys.
 
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Joined
May 25, 2005
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ROCHESTER, NY
She'll need a attorney and some good documentation and she'll need those pics/video.
Sounds to me like the Tech doing the oil & filter change didn't remove the old filter gasket nor checked if it came off with the oil filter.
Checking for the old oil filter gasket is one of the first things you learn about when changing oil & filter along with tightening the oil pan bolt.
 
Joined
Sep 12, 2004
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Basehor, KS
She needs to report the bad noise, etc, to the manager at Walmart. Over 20 yrs ago, in our case of no filter installed, we were towed back to walmart, oil and filter installed, and then called by Walmart's insurance company a day or two later. Walmart paid for the tow on the spot.

In our case, I opted to wait and see since there was no obvious signs of engine damage. I was given a one year time frame (that we did not use) to claim damages. The engine went on for 200K miles before the vehicle was taken off the road for other reasons.

She needs to make sure a case file is started, and get instructions as to how engine inspection will be paid for so a cause of damage is independently determined. Since I never had to make a claim, I don't know how well this will pan out. The insurance company rep I talked with seemed reasonable to deal with at the time.
 
Joined
Jul 20, 2019
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Northeast Georgia
Is the engine still making any noise since the issue was corrected? Honda engines are pretty forgiving and very well designed. She may have gotten lucky and not damaged it to that point.

She won't need a lawyer. Like mentioned above, they've acknowledged the issue. They know it was their fault. HOWEVER...the car IS a 1998....there's not a small claims judge on the planet that will order WM to provide a brand new or even a rebuilt engine. At best, she will likely settle for a used engine...possibly even with less miles than the one she had. WM will want the engine inspected by a ASE certified tech or their own claims adjuster to verify any critical damage before they do anything.

That said, she needs to follow up with the store manager and be prepared to continue up the chain of command if need be. Hopefully she won't need to go any further than that.

Demanding a brand new engine for a 23 year old car isn't realistic. So, if she presses the issue and ends up taking then to court with that demand, she needs to be prepared for disappointment.
 

JHZR2

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It sounds like Walmart owned up to it. Did she get the pictures? I’d want them as a personal copy, with proof that they were from my car and taken by Walmart, just as collateral in case things go south. Doesn’t sound right now like it will go badly, seems like WM will own up to it but she needs to be firm and proactive.
Funny noises and lights aren’t objective. The low pressure light surely came on. Was damage truly done? Who knows. We would guess so, but how much damage?
Knee jerk replacement of an engine may not be the best move. I’d want Walmart to pay to get the engine checked over by an independent, such as compression test, leak down test, look at cams for scoring, etc. Then make a decision.
 
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utah
Back in the day, 2000s, a double gasket event equalled a new engine paid out by WM corporate. One of my co-workers did a burn out with my 240sx, later that day the clutch went out. They pulled video and paid for the clutch.

I heard of them paying out like 13-18k for a Tacoma engine once, not my store but a nearby walmart.

They used to be great at paying for damages. Not sure if they still are.

Now if your engine did not get damaged you may not get much.
 
Joined
Feb 28, 2010
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kansas
When a case is started with walmart they will contact you and discuss the issue. I took my Ford Ranger there to have tires balanced, and
the tech put gouges in aluminum wheels with a impact and they replaced them no questions or hassles. As long as the manager of the service center has documented they are pretty good about it. The reason super tech oil tests as good as it does is because early on it was not a high quality oil, and wal mart had many law suits for engine failures. They finally started marketing a better oil. This info coming from a BG additive salesman that went to shops in my area.
 

928

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Jul 25, 2017
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Sacramento, Ca.
Document EVEYTHING conversations with mgr etc. The engine is now junk- will they pay for a rental while this is being fixed? This is why I do my own oil changes- no double gaskets, stripped drain plugs etc. , but if I was to take it in, I would want the oil change guy to show me the old filter with gasket. No gasket? look on the block.
 
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Keep all documents and records.

On a down note, this is a 1998 car. The Walmart insurance might total it if any engine problems crop up. I hope it runs okay from here on out.
 
Joined
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Dallas,Tx USA
Like the other poster has said, no attorney will be necessary. Plus no attorney would touch a case that small. Sounds like Walmart took complete responsibility and is taking care of them.
 

JHZR2

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Document EVEYTHING conversations with mgr etc. The engine is now junk- will they pay for a rental while this is being fixed? This is why I do my own oil changes- no double gaskets, stripped drain plugs etc. , but if I was to take it in, I would want the oil change guy to show me the old filter with gasket. No gasket? look on the block.
What objective evidence do you have that the engine is “junk”?

I’ve had friends run cars low enough on oil that the dummy light comes on. Add a quart, keep going. And these engines keep going.

I’ve also heard of situations where oil cooler lines have blown out on the highway, and it’s too late by the IME the oil pressure (live gauge) registers too low.

But some assessment needs to be done to justify junk, imo.
 
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