I drive a performance Chevrolet vehicle that requires special service requirements.
I went in for an oil change and alignment.
Re: the oil change. I discussed the correct oil:
- at time of booking
- the day before the booking
- with the Service Advisor
Re: the alignment.
- I showed the supervisor the correct alignment specs in my car manual. She took a picture of it
- I left the car manual on the dash flipped to the alignment page
I picked up the car the following day and looked at my bill. It stated the WRONG oil on the bill. The warranty could have been voided if I experience engine issues with the wrong oil. Lucky I was able to catch it before I left. So they had to waste my time redoing the oil change a second time.
While changing my oil the second time, I requested the printout for the alignment specs. Following the oil change, without telling me, they put it in another bay to redo the alignment as they found out they used the wrong specs. Again, if I didn't ask, they would have let me go without me knowing the better.
I was now at the dealership for 2.5hrs and needed to leave. A typical alignment takes less than an hour to do. Not sure why it was taking so long. So I left and told them I would be back in the evening.
I came to find my car ready for me to pick-up. I retrieved my keys, went to my car and found an alignment printout on my seat next to the manual. Again, the alignment readout was way off the GM Specs. They had actually used the specs of the wrong vehicle.
I went in and spoke to Chris, the Service Manager. I asked to be compensated for lost time by having a free oil change. He never apologized for any of these issues but agreed. He asked me to keep the car over night to redo the alignment. I said I needed the car for the next day at 11am. So I went home. 11am comes and goes... I get to the dealership, and it took another 1.5hrs to get the car out.
The key alignment spec was done correctly, so I left with the car. Got on the highway and the steering wheel was misaligned and the car pulled to the left.
I decided to go to another shop. Alignment was done in less than an hour, and the car drives beautifully.
I called Chris at the dealership. I said that I didn't trust the service department, and that instead of getting my future oil change covered... I wanted to get refunded for the current one. I also wanted to be refunded for my improper alignment. He basically said that he would only refund the alignment.
The key issue here is that you expect that the dealership service department is better than your local mechanic. If I did not have any knowledge of how a car worked, I would have left the dealership with improper oil (super critical for engine life) and an improper alignment (causing increased tire wear).
I sent an email to the General Manager last week. I also left him a message. I have not heard anything back.