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Old 02-17-2001, 06:52 PM   #1
film52
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Default Am I being picky or is this just wrong?

Is it because of my job and hobby I expect more? I repair computers and servers for a living. If I repair something it canít be close, the repair has to be exact. After all who wants to save just some of the data? Or use half of memory? When I take a picture the tolerances are very close if I want the picture to pop or to be used for a magazine or book cover, or if I just want to frame it and hang on the wall. For a portfolio only the best will do. Yea, any one can take pictures but I consider myself a craftsman and I have to work at it.

I thought I had found a capable dealer yesterday but, I went into the garage to let the dog out last night and my brake lights were stuck on. I could play with the brake pedal and the light would go out, if I stepped on the brake pedal (just the slightest touch) the lights would stay on. I started to work on the problem myself then thought why? If I had repaired a server and it failed I would be upset if my customer had to repair my repair. The first thing I would be inclined to do would be to present a bill to the customer if the customerís repair was incorrect. So I climb in the car and make the 42-mile trek to the dealer and explain the problem. By the time I return to the dealer the brake lights donít function at all. The service guy shakes his head says sorry and rents me a car. The process was nice and sterile and takes 3 hours, for me to get there deal with the service write up get the rental and get home. A Saturday morning shot. Not the way I want to spend my weekend morning, especially on something I shouldnít have to deal with in the first place. I didnít expect to collect my car in worse shape after the repair than before I took it in. So is it me being too picky, is this just one of those things or is it just wrong?

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Old 02-17-2001, 07:06 PM   #2
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If the brake light problem was caused by or related to the first set of repairs you had done, I would hope that they would not charge you for the second fix or the rental. A free oil change also might be warranted for your inconvenience. If the brake light problem was just coincidence and had nothing to do with your first visit I'm afraid your stuck. It was not clear from your post what your first visit involved.

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Old 02-17-2001, 08:05 PM   #3
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I understand your concern since I'm also in the computer business. There was a brake light switch issue with one model (think it was the L).

As an uninvolved party, it appears that your dealer is trying to help. As stated in the previous post, they should not charge you anything if the previous work caused this problem.

Shame the dealer's such a trip. Mine's in walking distance.

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Old 02-17-2001, 09:11 PM   #4
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I think the brake light problem is related to the first repair. In order to troubleshoot the problem with the cruise control the tech was under the dash in the area of the brake and clutch pedals. Iím not being charged for either repair, or the rental. Car (LS1) is still under warranty (extended). I do believe the dealer is trying to help; Iím just damn disappointed that on my first visit I had to take the car back for what I believe to be a unnecessary repair the very next day and blow a Saturday morning.

This dealer is in the process of building a dealership with in 20 miles of my house. Walking distance, did you purchase a car at the first dealer you came to? <Grin>

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Old 02-18-2001, 12:33 AM   #5
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it could be they knocked the wiring loose to the brake light switch that is mounted down there or it just went bad, my ram sticks occasionally, i havent gotten around to replacing it yet, hard to say, im sure they wont take the blame, but who knows? please tell me what the response is from the dealer, i'd love to hear it, jbd

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Old 02-18-2001, 03:02 AM   #6
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Ah Film 52- You offer a totally different perspective on your 7:52 post from your previous ones. Yeah its an unfortunate set of circumstances; but if you're not out dead presidents (or dead maple leafs if you are Canadian) how bad is it? I can't stand wasting my time either but people are subject to occasional error and don't tell me you *never once* inadvertantly screwed anybody over in your work regardless of your high standards and intentions. I can't say that I haven't for want of trying not to and I do occasionally give people some slack when I think they deserve it. I have made my own share of mistakes and I really appreciate it when someone understands and cuts me a break. Think about it and come to your own conclusion because I am reluctant to judge.

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Old 02-18-2001, 10:26 AM   #7
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I live one block from US1 in Raleigh, NC which is the "auto row" of the area. Within one mile, we have the following dealers:

Ford, Toyota, Honda, Lincoln-Mercury, Chrysler, Daewoo, Mercedes-Benz, Infiniti, Lexus, and, of course, Saturn.

Pretty convenient for a car buff.

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Old 02-18-2001, 11:52 AM   #8
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John6

I donít think that anywhere in my previous post I claim to be perfect (or for that matter in any post in any format or in any conversation Iíve ever had with anybody anywhere) Have I made mistakes? Yes I have. Are my standards high? Yes indeed. This past week I repaired a server for a commercial bank. I could not walk away from that job until I was ABSOLUTELY certain the repair was correct and functioning 100 %. No matter how long it took or what was required of parts or data conversion. Would the situation have been different if I was installing a new modem in a PC? Probably. Though I would have at least made sure the modem was capable of dialing and the system booted. Nor I was not trying to make a point of; me perfect Ė dealer erroneous. Should I allow an occasional error? Sure. My point was and still is that on my FIRST visit to this dealer two parts were ordered, a switch for the cruise control and a seat. Then I determine my car is unsafe to drive. Having the brake lights on constantly is akin to not having brake lights at all, which was the ultimate result. I will not (knowingly) drive a car in that condition in Atlanta traffic. Had I had found the CD player wasnít working after I returned home thatís excusable mistake. But to have a car rendered unsafe, that isnít. At least to me.

BobL

Sounds like a nice place for a Sunday stroll.

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Old 02-18-2001, 12:53 PM   #9
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Well, aren't I slow on the take? I responded to the duplicate post below, so I'll copy it here, for what it's worth:


Original Post:
The first thing I would be inclined to do would be to present a bill to the customer if the customerís repair was incorrect.


Maybe I read your post wrong, but did you mean "the <i><b>last</b></i> thing . . .?"

I think everything's been handled fairly so far. Now if the service guy had said, "Sorry, but the brake lights have nothing to do with the original fix," and tried to charge you for a 2nd repair, that would be different (I say this not knowing for what you had the car into service).

Chances are, the brake lights were working when you left the dealer, which is why they didn't notice, and why you didn't notice until you got home. Then they progressively got worse on your drive back. If the brake lights were sticking while in the service bay, chances are the mechanic would've mentioned it to the service advisor, and they would've told you and checked it out, rather than send you off with something which would be discovered so quickly.

There have been worse cases of poor service depts reported here, so unless you're sure the problem existed when you picked it up, I'd give them the benefit of the doubt.

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Old 02-18-2001, 01:26 PM   #10
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Yeah, last time I got to see the new Prius hybrid on the Toyota lot. Especially nice when the stores are closed and you can look in peace.

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Old 02-18-2001, 01:33 PM   #11
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Yes Bob, and the car sounds the same whether you listen to it on a closed dealership lot or drive it around at low speeds once warmed up.

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Old 02-18-2001, 06:48 PM   #12
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Hi dj,

Was just looking through Goldhawk's site last week. Seems like you in Canada have pretty much the same consumer issues we get here.

Yes, the Prius seemed quite promising. Hope Saturn can get a hybrid or true alternative fuel vehicle in the market soon. As we discussed before, the Toyota dealer on my corner stands knee high to a cockroach in terms of sales ethics and service quality.

Hope you and the Mrs. are feeling well.

Bob

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Old 02-18-2001, 07:26 PM   #13
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There are a couple of different issues here which I think are getting mushed together.

We are all busy these days (I worked all last night upgrading the operating systems of two mainframes 2000 miles away, my third weekend in a row of such activity, and I also normally work 60-70 hours during the week). I guess that is why we are attracted to Saturn, a reliable and <i>relatively trouble free make.</i> Of course no car made is <i>never</i> going to break.

It sounds to me that your service folks are giving you good service for an annoying problem (and a fairly minor safety hazard, compared to say, no brakes at all?). I feel a little sorry for the tech. I check the lighting on my Saturn at least weekly, but how do you check the brake lights without a helper? Would <i>you</i> have checked the brake lights after a similar repair? Of course, it is also <i>possible</i> that this is either 1) unrelated to the repair made, or 2) it was OK when you left the service department and it came loose on the way home (it's pot hole season in the NE where I live!). Since you did not notice it when you picked up the car there is no way to know.

I think what makes it particularly annoying in your case is having to spend so much time in travel, but of course you took that into consideration when buying your car from a distant retailer (Note: when I bought my Saturn in 1993 there were two retailers in the area, both an hour away). When my car was new, and my life/job was less hectic and the roads less congested, I used to look for an excuse to hop in my car and go for a ride, because I enjoyed my car (and my previous car had been very unreliable, a total pain to own).

During the first 50K miles on my Saturn the only non warranty, non wear (i.e. brakes, battery) repair I had to make was $1.37 for a seat belt retainer clip. Should it have broken? Maybe not, but I wonder what Volvo (or Volvo's parent company, Ford) would have charged me. I hope they repair this the first try (as I expect) and that you enjoy a pretty hassle free ownership of your Saturn for many years.

Thanks for a thought provoking post.

Jim

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Old 02-19-2001, 09:29 AM   #14
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Heartbeat

It would be the first thing; the total wouldn't be until the end obviously. I would make sure up front that the customer knew there were charges involved.

Jim

Mainframe upgrade, HSC 4.0 (2.10) by any chance?

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