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Thread: Shop broke something on my car - makes me pay for it

  1. #1

    Shop broke something on my car - makes me pay for it

    Edit: Shop made it right, offered me free oil service, it was just some miscommunication. Good guys over there. No reason for me to say anything bad about them.

    Well, I got off the phone with them. Apparently the manager was unaware that they installed the wheel locks, though I did say it a few times. When he understood that, he realized that the error was probably on their part, and has offered me free oil service, including the filter and labor and everything - which is about how much it cost for the labor anyway.

    He said it took them 3 hours to get the wheel locks off, but he only charged me 1, and was trying to be as fair as possible.

    I retract what I said before about them. They fixed it and are a good shop, and actually were very fair in what happened. I had a suspicion they would pull on through for me.

    I let them know that I was trying my hardest not to make any sort of deal about it, and I would have absolutely gone to the people that installed the wheel locks had another shop had done it. Since they were the guys that installed it, I went to them. They just had no record of it. It was all just some mis-communication.


    __________________________________________________ ______________________________

    ORIGINAL STORY

    I've been going to an excellent BIMRS-certified shop now ever since I got my car. They've treated me right, and I've absolutely loved how personal their service is. I've gone there 3 times and have been happy every time - except this one.

    I went to put on 4 new tires and get an alignment. They called me around the middle of the day to tell me that, when taking off my rear wheel lock, the lug was seized in there and they ended up breaking the wheel lock key. They were able to get the fronts off just fine, but when trying the rears, the key broke. As a result, they said that they needed to drill the wheel locks out of my wheels, and it would cost me a little extra.

    I wasn't sure what to say or do, so I said "Sure, go ahead and do it." I've never encountered this situation, I needed the tires on my car (safety issue, they were well beyond worn and one was having trouble holding air), I was leaving that weekend, I needed it back that day, and I simply had no choice.

    Keep in mind, after I got these wheel locks (OE by BMW), I went to this same shop to have them installed since I had trouble getting my lugs off with the standard tool in the trunk. It was a non-documented thing - the tech came out with a torque wrench, undid one on each wheel, torqued the wheel locks back on, and I was on my way. Probably a 5-minute thing. The tech recognized both me and my car, so I'm sure he might recall this incident if I bring it up.

    I had taken off the front wheels a few days ago to do my FCABs and had no problems getting any of my front lugs off.

    When I went to get my car back, they simply lumped the wheel install together with the labor of drilling out the wheel locks. I have no idea how much it cost individually to put on tires or take out the wheel locks. The total cost was $200 + a $120 alignment. I told them the same story above, but they said that they were just seized, had no record of them taking the wheels off. He said they always use a torque wrench on the lugs and not any air tools. I told him that I did not take the rear wheels off at all in-between them putting the locks on and now. They had my keys and my car, so I just paid the bill and figured that maybe the locks were defective or something. Since I bought them from a BMW dealership, I emailed them to left them know of the situation to see if they can get me new lugs or refund me.

    I received a response from the dealership:

    If the stud broke, there are two possible reasons. First, they might not have put the stud on the pattern correctly. By doing this and using an air gun, it eliminates the pattern thus not being able to catch the bolt. Second, if the shop used more than 90ft/lb of torque to uninstall or reinstall the wheel locks, it will strip the bolt. I'd be happy to sell you another set of wheel locks at my employee price, however I would give the bill to your shop. This sounds like a case of misuse/installation error. The BMW warranty covers a faulty party (say the wheel lock didn't fit to begin with, the pattern was off, etc) for 2 years or unlimited miles, whichever comes first. Their warranty does not cover installation error or wear&tear.

    Let me know the next course of action.
    I sent my shop an email, being kind about it. I basically kindly requested that they refund me the labor as I am now out a pair of $60 OE wheel locks as well as having to pay them extra labor to drill the remaining ones out. I want to continue using them, I really do, but I am not going to use them anymore if they break things that they install and then charge me for it. That's simply unfair and would make me trust them less. If they make things right, and if they are a good shop they will, I'd definitely reconsider. I want to continue supporting their business if it is a legitimately good business. Other than that problem, they got my car all tuned up and it feels completely new. I am amazed at how well my car drives now.

    What do you all make of this situation, other than me feeling really stupid for not being more up-front about it? Everyone told me I should've raised hell about it, but I'm just not that kind of person. I feel I may have been taken advantage of my kindness over things. What should I do if they do not reimburse me? I sent them the e-mail yesterday, but they have not yet responded. I will give them another day before I call them about it. If they're not going to do anything, well, they just lost my business and I'll be going to the BBB. I guess that's the best I can do in that situation.
    Last edited by Stu; 01-26-2012 at 02:19 PM.

  2. #2
    Personally I think the shop refunding $60.00 for the wheel locks would be a satisfactory resolution.
    ------
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  3. #3
    Join Date
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    That's a tough situation. I certainly talk to them, let them know just what you told us, that you still want to use them, but you don't think it's fair for you to bear the brunt of the issue, and see what they can work out. Make sure they know you're not just trying to jack them as I'm sure many people try to. Maybe instead of a direct refund, they can discount a future repair by the same that amount. Make sure you let them know you will publicize their customer service on the car forums, etc. The hint will be that the negative will be publicized as well if they don't compensate in some way.
    Randeaux/Rando/John/jr - '06 Cic ZHP; Southern California
    "ZHP or not, I still like you"


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  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by johnrando View Post
    That's a tough situation. I certainly talk to them, let them know just what you told us, that you still want to use them, but you don't think it's fair for you to bear the brunt of the issue, and see what they can work out. Make sure they know you're not just trying to jack them as I'm sure many people try to. Maybe instead of a direct refund, they can discount a future repair by the same that amount. Make sure you let them know you will publicize their customer service on the car forums, etc. The hint will be that the negative will be publicized as well if they don't compensate in some way.
    I did that for sure. I told them I want to keep supporting their business and I'm definitely not trying to take advantage of them at all. I just feel that it's not my fault, yet I'm paying for it. I figured that if they do not do anything to try and make it right, then I will get into "pissed off customer" mode and tell them they lost my business and they'll be getting some negative publicity. There's another well-reviewed shop down the road that's cheaper and does BMWs that I'll go to instead if they don't want to do anything about it.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 1970
    Location
    Branford, CT
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    15,736
    The way I read it, it doesn't seem to me that they are responsible for your wheel locks breaking. If the lug was installed incorrectly, I would think it would be obvious; I thought that if it's seated, then it's installed correctly. If you saw them swap out the lug nut originally and it went in easily (as it should), then it seems that the install was done correctly.

    Personally, I wouldn't hold that against them as it doesn't seem like they ever did anything wrong. But, then again, I wasn't there when they did it so I couldn't observe the scenario when they swapped out the lug bolts for the locking ones.


    I wouldn't ditch that shop for that.
    BP
    2005 330i ZHP / 6MT
    Imolarot / Naturbraun



    It's not the car you drive, it's how you drive it.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
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    The Windy City
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    9,139
    yeah demand a refund the $60 and never set foot in there again. obviously they're either careless or morons... in both cases it screams stay away to me.
    Call me Seth
    CURRENT: 2016 Long Beach Blue BMW /// M2
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    '04 330i ZHP | '11 E82 135i | '08 E90 328xi | 07 E91 328xi SportWagon

    Quote Originally Posted by danewilson77 View Post
    If I wore panties, I'd be dropping them right now.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Wilmington, De
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    assholes shouldve put anti seize on them the last time they had them off. its not like they seize on it a short period of time. usually the time before when your car was service the lug bolts wouldve been a little harder to get out and they should have put antiseize on them. My shop does not charge for removing wheel locks because we have a snap-on set of wheel lock removal sockets which make it as easy as taking out regular bolts. though it wasnt directly their fault they could have prevented it with care and they should have only charged you for the new wheel lock set, not removing the old ones. thats bullshit I wouldnt pay for someone to remove them and I would never charge anyone to remove theirs.


    : Umnitza angel eyes 6000k : HID lowbeams 6000k : HID foglights 3000k : Blacked out corner lights and sidemarkers : Smoked Eagle eye LED tail lights : 15% tint on all windows : powdercoated black 135s with Michelin Pilot Sport a/s : Koni adjustable coilovers with adjustable struts : AA tune : K & N cold air intake : Highline tuning cat back exhaust : CDV delete : 2 zhpmafia stickers (plus 25 bhp each) :

  8. #8
    Join Date
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    also ask what theyve been torqueing the bolts to. Like how many ft/lbs or NM. if the say over 80 ft/lbs they should be refunding you


    : Umnitza angel eyes 6000k : HID lowbeams 6000k : HID foglights 3000k : Blacked out corner lights and sidemarkers : Smoked Eagle eye LED tail lights : 15% tint on all windows : powdercoated black 135s with Michelin Pilot Sport a/s : Koni adjustable coilovers with adjustable struts : AA tune : K & N cold air intake : Highline tuning cat back exhaust : CDV delete : 2 zhpmafia stickers (plus 25 bhp each) :

  9. #9
    They never got back to me. It's not worth my time to go after them for a couple of bucks. I can make it up easily; I'm young. If it was over $300, I'd be doing more, but it's definitely not even close. I'll just put in a BBB complaint as well as never go there again. I'll be taking my business to Import Motor Werkz. They have a road force balancer there.

    Honestly, I'm pretty shocked by this poor customer service for a BIMRS-Certified shop. You should always, always get back to your customer. If dealers weren't so expensive, I'd be going there all the time..

    I also asked them about the torque spec when I was there originally. They did say they torque them to 80 ft/lbs.

  10. #10
    Join Date
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    Fayetteville, NC
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    1,751
    Can you PM me the name of the shop, so that I can avoid it? Thanks! or perhaps just post it even...we do need to know feedback from BMW shops, right?
    2005 AW ZHP Coupe. CW, Alcantara, Leather st. wheel, HK, Xenons, Step, Dinan chip & air box, USASpec, Sprint Booster


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