Regrettable dealership experience from someone who rarely complains

Joined
Apr 13, 2013
Messages
8,902
Location
FL, USA
When I took our Element in for the airbag recall the dealer told me it needed a transmission oil change because "the fluid was dark". I had just changed it the week before, literally. I change it every 10K miles (every other engine OCI) so the fluid was bright red.

Scott
They have done that to me at least twice. Along with the "dirty air filter". I love pointing out their dishonesty to their face when I explain that I just completed those services.
 
Joined
Mar 5, 2015
Messages
2,741
Location
Juno Beach FL
If you run a service shop, and pay the service manager extra for upsells, then the service manager may very well push those upsells on anyone that he/she can even if it to the customer's detriment.
 
Joined
Aug 1, 2017
Messages
2,642
Location
WA
When I took our Element in for the airbag recall the dealer told me it needed a transmission oil change because "the fluid was dark". I had just changed it the week before, literally. I change it every 10K miles (every other engine OCI) so the fluid was bright red.

Scott

You may have the cleanest transmission on the planet! ⚙️:unsure:
 
Joined
Aug 11, 2016
Messages
645
Location
new jersey
I'm surprised they would be willing to use customer supplied oil at all. Most places in my area will not. Last dealership I was at did a 5 qt oil and filter change for $29.95 if you brought your own oil and filter it was $29.95 labor. Where I work now just declines customer parts jobs in general, a few exceptions are made for long time very good customers but even fleet companies who try to send their box of oil and a filter are told no.

I do agree that they should not have tried to upsell to their oil and convince her it was "better".
this is how it can go, sometimes dealers or oil change shops have what is called a conventional oil change for $29.95 using a semi-synthetic blend usually 5w20, and then try to upsell customers to a better Full synthetic 0w20 for $75-$80 for a 5k OCI and tell you its better for a higher mileage car:LOL:. This happened to me recently with a 2006 Honda accord, factory original fill was 5w20 blend, costs $25 with coupon at the Honda dealer for years, then along came the highly recommended better 0w20 full syn which is all they will use now at certain Honda dealers at over $75 plus, im looking to take it to a private shop to continue using the 5w20 blend is fine for about $30.
 
Joined
Dec 24, 2014
Messages
224
Location
Texas
They have done that to me at least twice. Along with the "dirty air filter". I love pointing out their dishonesty to their face when I explain that I just completed those services.
So, I'm sitting in the office of quick change place to get INSPECTION sticker, and this worker shows the owner a slightly dirty air filter that "Needs Changing". I could see through it and would run another 20k. I'm picky about my car, but I know an air filter won't hurt engine when slightly dirty. It will never stay perfectly clean.
 
Joined
Sep 21, 2020
Messages
452
Obligatory weekly "Let's bash a dealer for" (insert reason here). Just another day on BITOG.
Bottom line is that these dealerships in general are almost all bad with a very few exceptions, I should know I worked in the service business at half a dozen stores for over 20 years and only ONE was decent. The rest were crooks, hacks, and scoundrels for the most part, and if you were an honest tech and called them out for their sketchy behavior, they would fire you before they changed their ways.
 
Joined
Oct 10, 2021
Messages
547
Location
Wisconsin
So, I'm sitting in the office of quick change place to get INSPECTION sticker, and this worker shows the owner a slightly dirty air filter that "Needs Changing". I could see through it and would run another 20k. I'm picky about my car, but I know an air filter won't hurt engine when slightly dirty. It will never stay perfectly clean.
Done that 30 times with my company trucks. Look at this.. yes I changed it a week ago. Or on a large van they never ever pull the air cleaner. So i showed the manager a huge layer of dust on the entire air cleaner. Had not been off in a year at least. Thieves. Lying thieves.
 
Joined
Mar 30, 2015
Messages
9,693
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Lake Havasu City, Arizona
Whenever I start wondering if it's worth it for me to keep changing my own oil, all I have to do is read one of these type of threads. It makes me want to run for my drain pan, and roll of paper towels.
 
Joined
Oct 10, 2021
Messages
547
Location
Wisconsin
The oil change places have had to replace a lot of stripped oil pan bolts. My cars since 1976 have never needed a repair. Thats why despite cold weather and a terrible painful knee I keep changing my own oil.
I also do my own brakes.. again I never had a single issue. Its just not worth it to pay for pretend mechanics to mess up my vehicles. Many mechanics are awesome. Some are not
 

Zee09

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Fairhill Maryland
Whenever I start wondering if it's worth it for me to keep changing my own oil, all I have to do is read one of these type of threads. It makes me want to run for my drain pan, and roll of paper towels.
Me too.
But i find myself looking for cars that make oil changing easier too.
About 10 years ago I went to the oil extraction tools and on the hard cars the Fram Ultra so i don't have to pull the filter every time.
 

SammyChevelleTypeS3

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I had a few regrettable dealership experiences, one so regrettable I'll never forget it, and it's a reason why the thought of going to a dealership for anything other than purchasing a new vehicle sickens me. It's also why I comment in these frequent threads of dealerships messing up. Don't get me wrong there are good techs in dealerships, however for every good one there are probably five or more techs that shouldn't be within 100 yards of a car.

My very first new vehicle, an 1984 Ford E-150, bought long after I started driving was totaled by a dealer, in their shoddy body shop within days of me buying it. I took the new van home, and the following morning decided to detail it, like most proud new car enthusiasts do. I put a ladder along side it to access the roof and noticed the center of the roof was gray primer, with no black paint. I took it back and was told they'd repaint the roof, I wasn't thrilled but agreed. After close to a month w/o a van, and several calls with lame responses I decide to go to their body shop and look around. Much to my disappointment there was my van parked outside with the windows open the seats soaking wet, and the center of the roof caved in, and the right side buckled out a bit. The scaffold they rigged collapsed with a guy on it and wrecked the roof. I think they were actually waiting on a replacement roof? LOL. After a lot of fighting they ended up replacing it with an 85, which I had to order and wait months for. No rental vehicle either. So the thought of them touching any of my vehicles till this day for any kind of work still makes me sick! I refuse free oil changes at delivery of a new, or any other freebies that mean bringing my vehicle to them, too much risk for me. Working at dealerships and visiting the shop just reinforced it, even decades later. Rant off, and sorry to the good techs here at Bitog.
ALSO.... No intention of insulting the many good / honorable techs & SW here and out there. I too always decline the "free oil changes" and avoid "stealerships" at all cost. Its just a fact of life. They have immense overhead and cost , benefits and must pay workers salaries. My last visit was a good one all right. Simple tire balance and rotation turned into a week long ordeal. Even after calling to schedule and showing up early in hopes of getting in and out.... NO LUCK. After the excuses bla bla bla.... this tech called in and we shorthanded (which I know is a reality) they would have me ready in the afternoon. After killing the better part of day in stores nearby... I get the next call. "Our new tech was kind of messy and got the floor mats greasy and dirty so we want to hold your car to have it detailed tomorrow! Now I got to get a ride home 25 mi and return next day. After trying to be patient and NOT calling to bug them.... by 0200pm I had to call. Where is my car please. The next bomb went off. "Oh man we apologize but one of the techs parked your car (was only there for tire balance and rotation) outside with both back windows down and we had a severe thunderstorm and filled up your back floor with rain water.!" Don't worry we will have it detailed!" "We would like to send you to get a rental." I went in person and told the Manager "it is NOT my fault or responsibility not after 3 days to go thru the BS of renting a car you offer to pay for. I want a vehicle (demonstrator or?) of yours off the lot now!" They sent me home in a 2021 Pilot. I also talked with a lawyer who said I have no recourse until or unless something (electronics , etc..) goes wrong/bad and I prove the rain caused it. Well so far ok. They did place a so called $500 receipt from a detail company on my ticket. Well if they paid $500 to that detailer they got robbed cause you could barley even tell the car had been cleaned except there was no indication of water or damage. Have not been back to a dealership since. Its hell. Every time I get to knowing and kind of on friendly basis with SW or Service Managers who deal fairly, before long they are GONE and a new bunch moves in who are NOT so user friendly. OK. Ready for the attacks from the SW and Managers here who I don't know and do not accuse you of anything. Sorry a fact is a fact.
 

SammyChevelleTypeS3

$60 site donor 2022
Joined
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South East USA
Bottom line is that these dealerships in general are almost all bad with a very few exceptions, I should know I worked in the service business at half a dozen stores for over 20 years and only ONE was decent. The rest were crooks, hacks, and scoundrels for the most part, and if you were an honest tech and called them out for their sketchy behavior, they would fire you before they changed their ways.
MY experience too. I have a friend who been a service manager for over 30 years or more. He tries to do right by folks and he was bounced and fired from a couple who wanted him to bump up charges etc. He finally landed at a place who have ethics and is still there to this day. **NOT** an attack on any one here who works in the industry.
 
Joined
Jul 3, 2005
Messages
37,401
Location
NY
ALSO.... No intention of insulting the many good / honorable techs & SW here and out there. I too always decline the "free oil changes" and avoid "stealerships" at all cost. Its just a fact of life. They have immense overhead and cost , benefits and must pay workers salaries. My last visit was a good one all right. Simple tire balance and rotation turned into a week long ordeal. Even after calling to schedule and showing up early in hopes of getting in and out.... NO LUCK. After the excuses bla bla bla.... this tech called in and we shorthanded (which I know is a reality) they would have me ready in the afternoon. After killing the better part of day in stores nearby... I get the next call. "Our new tech was kind of messy and got the floor mats greasy and dirty so we want to hold your car to have it detailed tomorrow! Now I got to get a ride home 25 mi and return next day. After trying to be patient and NOT calling to bug them.... by 0200pm I had to call. Where is my car please. The next bomb went off. "Oh man we apologize but one of the techs parked your car (was only there for tire balance and rotation) outside with both back windows down and we had a severe thunderstorm and filled up your back floor with rain water.!" Don't worry we will have it detailed!" "We would like to send you to get a rental." I went in person and told the Manager "it is NOT my fault or responsibility not after 3 days to go thru the BS of renting a car you offer to pay for. I want a vehicle (demonstrator or?) of yours off the lot now!" They sent me home in a 2021 Pilot. I also talked with a lawyer who said I have no recourse until or unless something (electronics , etc..) goes wrong/bad and I prove the rain caused it. Well so far ok. They did place a so called $500 receipt from a detail company on my ticket. Well if they paid $500 to that detailer they got robbed cause you could barley even tell the car had been cleaned except there was no indication of water or damage. Have not been back to a dealership since. Its hell. Every time I get to knowing and kind of on friendly basis with SW or Service Managers who deal fairly, before long they are GONE and a new bunch moves in who are NOT so user friendly. OK. Ready for the attacks from the SW and Managers here who I don't know and do not accuse you of anything. Sorry a fact is a fact.
That sucks. I can't speak about other regions in the US but around here for every good service writer or tech working at dealerships, there are ten or more hacks. IMO it's not worth the effort for me to try and find the good employees.
 
Joined
Jul 14, 2020
Messages
1,144
The independent Goodyear chain I used to work at was 100% reliable, but they've recently lost half of the staff that used to make it so good. I was having all my work that I couldn't do performed there but now it doesn't make sense.
Not only that, I was helping coordinate repairs to most of our work fleet there also and we've gone from 3 trucks to 5 company owned plus mine and the owner is finally convinced that my choices are probably better for the vehicles so he seems to want me to coordinate all that stuff.
I moved to a smaller town nearby our office and I can find a good local independent for my truck but I don't have a clue where to go with the others. He wants the stuff to get done on weekends preferably and the only places opened then are Walmart at Canadian Tire as far as I know, neither of which are a good choice usually.
That sucks. I can't speak about other regions in the US but around here for every good service writer or tech working at dealerships, there are ten or more hacks. IMO it's not worth the effort for me to try and find the good employees.
 
Joined
Apr 22, 2018
Messages
2,051
Location
MA
Bottom line is that these dealerships in general are almost all bad with a very few exceptions, I should know I worked in the service business at half a dozen stores for over 20 years and only ONE was decent. The rest were crooks, hacks, and scoundrels for the most part, and if you were an honest tech and called them out for their sketchy behavior, they would fire you before they changed their ways.
With all the first-hand horror stories in the world with dealerships, it must be some weird form of cognitive dissidence to constantly try and defend dealerships. I don't get it...
 
Joined
Jul 14, 2020
Messages
1,144
With all the first-hand horror stories in the world with dealerships, it must be some weird form of cognitive dissidence to constantly try and defend dealerships. I don't get it...
I worked at a couple dealerships that were generally good, but they all can have a bad apple and that applies to independent garages too.
 
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