I am not a happy customer, and I have some serious concerns about your service this past Friday on the ’99 Ford Ranger.
I brought it in, and told Travis about a knocking noise from the front end. Travis called me a couple hours later with the diagnosis:
1. there’s some play in the upper control arm(s).
2. there’s some play in the outer tie rod end(s).
3. there’s some play in the left front wheel (bearings).
4. swaybar bushings need to be replaced.
5. front end alignment.
Estimated cost, approximately $1,100.00
Who wants to spend $1,100 on a 20 year old truck(!) –not me.
I asked Travis -if I bought the parts, how much is the labor, and it was over $500.
I couldn’t justify spending $1,100 or $500 (+parts) on the truck.
I picked it up, and paid the $60 inspection/service fee.
So, I bought the parts – so my son can put them on. Why? - because my son replaced these same parts exactly a year ago – upper & lower control arms, outer tie rods, replaced/repacked the left front wheel bearings.
I bought Moog brand parts on Friday from the AutoPlus parts distributor on Phelan Avenue. I paid a total of $230 for the upper control arms, outer tie rods and swaybar bushings. The upper control arms were $75 each. (Since I work for MLGW, I get a significant discount.)
We replaced these parts on Saturday. Took us a few hours working in the driveway using a floor jack and jack stands. Unfortunately, after we replaced everything, put it back together and drove it around the block – the knocking noise from the front end was still there.
I was mad – at this point, I had spent $200 on parts, $60 to tell me what was wrong, several hours under the truck – and the noise was still there.
Today is Monday. I took the truck to Stigler Alignment, on National Street – Stigler does front end work, and has for 50+ years.
Told them I had some knocking noise from the front end - told them the parts I replaced, but the noise was still there. I told them I needed an alignment, and to see if they could diagnose the knocking noise. He told me - when I dropped the truck off, that those parts weren’t causing the noise.
They called me later – said the noise was not from those front end parts, but that I needed to install new (adjustable) camber bolts - so they installed an eccentric bolt kit and aligned the front end – and the knocking noise went away, for about $160(!).
So this is why I am not a happy customer – I have done business with you for years, and have spent thousands of dollars, well over $10,000 with you – because I trust Travis and Steve’s Tire & Auto.
I am a loyal midtown customer, but you dropped the ball on this diagnosis. You told me I needed to replace Moog (quality) parts - that were literally a year old at a cost of $1,100. So I did, but it didn’t fix the problem – because there was nothing wrong with those parts, and they were not the problem. But if I had left the truck with you – you would have replaced those parts based on your $1,100 estimate.
Steve & Travis, your good name is only as good as the last auto mechanic you hire, based on his skill set, integrity and work ethic.
I have one suggestion going forward – when you have a customer repair estimate that is more than $500 (or $1,000), either you, or one of your more senior mechanics, needs to review (double-check) the first mechanics inspection and diagnosis.
For your consideration,
Tom thanks for doing business with us. I appreciate you letting me know about your experience, even though it didnt go the way I would have liked. I have been repairing cars for over 30 years and have always prided myself on being fair to my customers. Travis and I discuss our business practices on a daily basis to try and prevent situations like yours from occurring. When the technician drove your truck he heard mulitiple noises and while he made mention that some of the parts looked fairly new he still deemed them to be a problem. He acutally consulted with another technician about what he saw and heard on the test drive. I think Travis and you spoke about the fact that some of the parts appeared new but in our opinion were suspect with the multiple noises we were hearing. I think we should have driven the truck with you to have a better understanding of what you were hearing. Tom you are very inportant to us as our customer and we will do whatever you think is right to make you happy. Steve
First of all I would like to say thanks for being our customer. As for you not be given information as to when you should expect your car, we should have done that. I will have a discussion we our team and make sure that we do a better job educating our customers of what is reasonable completion times. I will call you this morning concerning the discounts. Thanks Steve.
John thanks for your business! Steve
Ralph thanks for doing business with us and for the kind words! Steve.
Thanks for doing business with us! Steve.
William thanks for doing business with us! Steve.
Matt thanks for trusting us with your vehicle's needs. Steve.
Mark thanks for your business! Steve
Thanks for trusting us with your vehicle! Steve.
Thasnks for trusting us with your vehicles. Steve.
Latrell thanks for choosing us for your automotive needs! Glad your day improved!! Steve
Thanks for doing business with us! Steve
Nathan thanks for doing business with us! Steve
Geraldine thanks for doing business with us! Steve
Courtney thanks for doing business with us and for doing the review! Steve
Anthony thanks for doing business with us! Steve
Thanks for doing business with us! Steve
Abby thanks for doing business with us! Steve
Geraldine thanks for doing business with us. Steve.
Brenda thanks for doing business with us! Steve