The customer was told that if the noise was very obvious to locate there would not be a charge, but if we needed to bring the vehicle into the shop and put it on a hoist there would be a charge only if he decided not to fix it. In alot of cases the diagnostic fee is waivered if we repair the vehicle. The customer had mentioned at the time the appointment was made that he had been searching the internet for an answer and also was looking for parts on Rock Auto. After I sent a Tech with him on a test drive and we determined the vehicle needed to be brought into the shop and lifted on a hoist for further diagnostics, He then let us know that his intention was not to have us repair the vehicle but wanted a free diagnostics so he could buy the parts online and fix it himself. I am sorry you feel this way, but it's impossible to run a business and not charge for a service.
I am sorry that you were displeased with the bill it is not our intention to make you feel that you overpaid for this service. Please allow me to explain how the labor process works. The shop rate is $100 per hour flate rate. Which means that the published labor time from the manufacturer states it should take .4 tenths of an hour to do the job which would be 24 minutes. It took the technician around 20 minutes from start to finish to remove the tail lamp assy. and replace the bad bulb. You were charged .3 tenths which is $30 labor plus the price of the bulb. Published labor rates were put in place by the manufacturer as a guide line to suggest how long a job should take, and this is the fairest way to charge for a service.
This is surely an unfortunate circumstance. When the appointment was made the complaint was, check engine light is on and check charging system, battery goes dead. The technician scan the computer system and found 2 trouble codes one was for the ratio sensor and the other was a crank sensor code. The charging system was also checked along with the battery and the electrical system was check for a battery drain. The vehicle needed a ratio sensor and battery. Authorization were given for the ratio sensor replacement, which is mounted in the exhaust system. The total repair bill was $654.58. After talking to the service advisor at the dealership I was told the engine was knocking possibly due to a spun connecting rod bearing or piston wrist pin, he also said the engine was full of oil. From my experience as a technician for over 30 years, it is impossible that replacing the ratio sensor in the exhaust system would have damaged the engine. You are a valued customer and have been for many years. I am sorry that this happened and I feel we are being wrongly accused in this situation.
I don't know what this customer is talking about, she was not charged anything, she didn't have to pay for the quote or the diagnostics we gave her. She was quoted parts from the dealer and decided she could find the parts cheaper online. She also had a friend with her that said he could do the job in 5 minutes because he had watched a you tube video. I am sorry you feel this way but I can't run a business if I have to sell parts and warranty those parts for the same price that you can buy them online.
I want to apologize for the extended wait that day.The technician scheduled to work on your vehicle ran into a problem with his prior appointment. This does not normally happen, but unfortunately it did that day and he did not have a free stall to get your vehicle in when scheduled. The diagnostics took longer than normal due to the problem you had with the vehicle. The service writer also spent a fair amount of time on the phone with the dealer and parts store looking for a part that is no longer available. I realize this is not an excuse for the long wait that you experienced, all I can do is apologize and say that I am sorry.
First of all when the appointment was made by the customer he had two issues that needed to be diagnosed. The first was an engine tick that goes away when the engine warmed up, second was check squeak noise on engine start up. The first issue was diagnosed, the engine tick noise was either coming from engine pistons or lifters, also had an exhaust leak of right side exhaust manifold. Customer did not want further diagnosed at this time. The second noise was the squeak on startup, tech removed serp. belt and inspected the idler pulley, water pump, and tensioner assy. The tensioner assy and idler pulley bearings were making noise. Recommended to customer idler pulley, tensioner assy, and serp. belt. The customer agreed to have repaired. The following day when the vehicle was picked up there was another noise at start up that was not there the previous day, the customer was upset and did not want to believe us that we did not hear the noise earlier. The tech then rechecked the new noise and found it was coming front the alt. We removed all parts from the first repair, so the customer was not charged for these parts or the labor to install them. He then agreed to have the alt. replaced, which took care of the noise. The customer was not charged $190 to find the problem, there were 2 diagnostic charges for the 2 separate issues he had with his vehicle. He got charged $76 to replace the alt. plus the cost of the part. The alternator, not the starter was replaced.
I apologize for the wait, there are times that it takes longer than normal due to unforeseen circumstances, like waiting for parts, or finishing work on a previous appointment to free up the hoist to do the oil change.
This customer called and wanted an estimate over the phone for an intake manifold gasket and did not want any diagnostics. After replacing the gasket, the technician found that the timing cover was leaking coolant, which caused the repairs to go up in price. The customer also requested other repairs to be made on the vehicle, which again affected the price. We always suggest to the customers to have the problem diagnosed to know exactly what is wrong with their vehicle. This is what happens when the customer self diagnoses the issue and does not want to pay for diagnostics.
In regards to the $52 charge for being told what was wrong with the vehicle. We as professionals need to verify what the problem is and attempt to determine what caused it. In this case the engine flywheel had to be inspected which involve rotating the engine by hand and visually inspecting each tooth of the flywheel, also both batteries were tested to verify they passed a load test. This was also to make sure the new starter worked properly and that the old starter had not been destroyed as a result of weak or bad batteries. In most cases what the customer thinks is wrong with their vehicle is not usually the case. As for the shop supply charge it is a percentage of parts and labor which covers misc. parts and supplies used on the repair process, as this is the most equitable way of charging for these materials. Shop supplies cover spray lubricants and cleaners, shop cloths, electrical tape, disposal of waste oil, parts washer maintenance fees, etc. In most cases the shop supply fee on most repairs just covers all misc. materials, in other cases in runs long and then other times it runs short. But this is the fairest way to charge for these misc. materials.
The customer dropped off his vehicle at 11:13 AM and was picked up and paid for at 1:54 PM. He was only charged for and hour of diagnostic time. The customer concern for the vehicle was to check for a battery drain, and had to jump start vehicle. The tech first tested the charging and starting system, load tested the battery and installed tester to monitor amount of milli-amp battery drain. The battery failed the load test and was charged for and hour the retested failed again. It also takes up to an hour for all modules to power down to properly test for a drain. We recommended a new battery and a possible reflash per General Motors TSB. #09-06-03-002G that addressed a discharged battery and parasitic current draw. We did not sell the customer anything that he did not need.
I spoke to Pat shorly after he picked up his vehicle and found that the added expense was a computer error. I credited his account at his request and he was satisfied.
Customer complaint was (check clunking noise when sifting). The technician working on the vehicle road tested the vehicle, raised it on the lift and inspected the drivetrain and fluid levels of trnasfer case and front and rear differentials. There was a small amount of driveline play which was normal for the age and miles that were on the vehicle. The customer wanted us to check the torque on the output flange of the transfer case, the driveshaft was removed from the vehicle which is a two piece driveshaft. The flange nut was checked with a torque wrench and found to be at the correct torque, then all u-joints were inspected at that time also. We found that the u-joint at the transfer case was bad and customer declined to have repaired. Her was charged 1.5 hours for the work at $95.00 per hour. The technician spent over 2 hours on the vehicle and the customer was only charged for published flat rate for the work that was done.
I called Sean and discussed with him the complaint he had. The big part of the issue was the time it took us to get the vehicle repaired and that it was an inconvenience to him. I apoligized to him and told him that we needed to communicate better with the customers on these large jobs that take a few days to finish. At the time the vehicle was here we were extremely busy, but that is not an excuse for what happened.
Told them about this and they could have cared less.
This customer called and got a price quote over the phone, it is impossible to give an accurate estimate without inspecting the vehicle first. We did not know that it needed rotors until it was taken apart and visually inspected. All customers are given a phone call with the price and also to let them know what is wrong with their vehicle before repairs are made. There must have been a misunderstanding with the phone conversation when this customer was called. All repairs are only done after the customer authorizes them.