Seriously disappointing Tire Kingdom expericence

Messages
294
Location
Gainesville, FL
I'm spending a few weeks at my place in Tallahassee, and on the way up here I had a noticeable vibration between 60 and 75 mph. It is definitely a tire balance issue.

My CR-V, a spare car which I don't drive much, is sitting on four month old Sumitomo tires with about 900 miles on them. I bought them at Tire Kingdom in Gainesville in May. That being the case, and since I'm a good 200 miles from my shop, I made an appointment at the nearest Tire Kingdom store for a balance and took it in.

First impressions were not good, as the "tech" didn't know he had to hold the clutch to the floor to start the car. Another employee moved the car inside for him. He got it up on the lift, removed the wheels, and then came inside and asked me to come look at something with him.

He proceeded to show me my Honda OE replacement struts with 50k on them, and said they were the source of my vibration. He showed me factory undercoating in the wheel wells and said it was oil spraying from the struts. Total BS but I didn't say anything, just let him keep going. He then said I needed new tie rod ends, and had a leaking valve cover gasket (I had replaced the valve cover gasket two days before, what he was seeing was residual oil on the back of the engine. Cylinder head and valve cover were dry and clean).

When he was done with his spiel, I figured it was a good time to inform him that I, an ASE Master Tech, happened to own a shop in another town and I knew none of those components were bad. When I told him the struts had 50k on them, he said with a straight face "that's the manufacturer's recommended interval on them." He didn't care to argue when I said even if the struts WERE bad, they don't cause that kind of vibration. I told him about the valve cover gasket, and that the tie rod ends and alignment were perfect. I said thank you for "checking it over," but please just balance the tires like I asked and I'll be on my way.

When they were typing up my bill, they gave me an estimate for all the work I supposedly needed.
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I laughed out loud at this. I wouldn't have charged a dime over $1200 for the same job, had it actually been needed.

On the way out, the same tech who lied about my car was talking with an older lady in the parking lot. I rolled up next to them, got out, and asked him if he had actually checked my power steering fluid, because if he had he would have found it to still be clear and new as it was flushed 3 days ago.

That guy went silent. The older lady turned around, got in her car and left. Serves them right 😁
 
Messages
2,246
Location
Juno Beach FL
Well done. You did that lady a tremendous favor.
"Technicians" like that need to be reported.
Reported to the managers that hired said technicians? I am a cynic, and I believe the managers know exactly what kind of technicians they are hiring at the salary levels being paid, as well as knowing exactly what levels of service are being provided as it is all in their business model.
 

getawheel

Thread starter
Messages
294
Location
Gainesville, FL
If there was residual oil stain where the gasket had been replaced, i can understand that as misunderstanding. The rest of it? Not a chance.
Same thing I thought. I told him so and gave the benefit of the doubt on that one. He didn’t actually put it on the estimate, just mentioned it.
 
Messages
296
Location
FL, USA
I don't know how places like this continue to exist.
Think of all the little old ladies they've ripped off.
Because more than likely this is coming from the top, not 1 bad egg. Kind of curious what the response will be from management.

What's the most effective way to hurt them? Google review?
BBB is useless, they're already terrible there, but nobody looks at that.
 
Messages
1,307
Location
PEARL River la
I had Tire Kingdom refuse to honor their own sale but Goodyear honored the sale. I called the district office and left a message which store manager called and tried to say the sale was store specific which I told him to tell someone else that bs. 3 days later district manager called and apologized but I told him Goodyear honored the ad and he wanted me let him take tires off then I bring back to Goodyear. Tried everything. I haven't bought anything from them since then. Oh store manager and guy at desk both lost their jobs. Bad thing was family was a tech at the time and got mad cause made a complaint towards the ones handling this
 
Messages
6,202
Location
KY
My Tire Kingdom Horror Story: Back around 2002 I was on my way to a family vacation in Hilton Head and hit a pothole, ruining the RF tire. I was driving the Club Sport, which does use a bit of oil(1 qt. every 2500-3000 miles or so), so I had checked the oil at every fuel stop AND when I got to Hilton Head. I NEVER needed to add any oil. Fast forward three days-I'm at the Hilton Head Tire Kingdom having my tire replaced. On the way back to the condo the CEL illuminates and I begin to smell burning oil. I pull over, pop the hood, and find that my oil filler cap is missing. I call Tire Kingdom and they treat me like an idiot- "Sir, you need to go back to the shop that changed your oil. We never opened the hood." That's funny; I drove the car from KY to SC and never smelled any oil OR noticed a missing oil cap OR saw a CEL... Luckily, I found the cap laying on one of the strut mounts. After an hour of scrubbing and a roll of paper towels the engine bay was presentable again. My guess is that some idiot at Tire Kingdom thought the car was in for an oil change and got ready to pull the drain plug when someone yelled "No, Goober! That 'uns jest here to git the tar changed." So, Goober closed the hood without replacing the cap. What really angered me about the entire debacle was the fact that they shouldn't have been anywhere near the underhood area. I also didn't appreciate being treated like I didn't know what I was talking about. I wasn't seeking any restitution- a simple "We're sorry." would have been sufficient.
 
Messages
12,507
Location
North Carolina
I have an appointment to speak with the manager about it on the phone tomorrow morning.
Probably won't accomplish anything but it might get somebody's attention.

Your are right, i would not expect much. If he is a profit generator, one phone call from a knowledgeable customer is outweighed by the profits from the unknowing.
 
Every time I tried to buy from Tire Kingdom, they try to cheat me. I no longer even try to use their “service”.
Lots of tire places here in my area of Central Florida. I deal with either Discount Tire or sometimes with one of two local (Mom & Pop) dealers. Discount has always treated me good and have locations everywhere in the country I go. BTW, when I travel to Western NY, I use Dunn Tire. Many locations in WNY.
 
Messages
5,601
Location
Da Swamp
How about Tire Choice? We had a local independent shop that I'd used many times since about 2004. The other morning I drive past the shop and it's Tire Choice now. Any good or bad stories about them?
 
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