Nothing can take away the thrill of owning a car like a bad service experience.....
The number one complaint being the fact that the service department did not fix the problem. The technicians are highly trained, but diagnosis can be extremely difficult if they are not supplied with necessary information. Below are some tips to aid you in allowing the technician to do his/her job.
1) When visiting the service department, supply the service advisor with as
much information as possible. Tell them your problem and ask that they repeat
it back to you, so you know that they have a clear understanding of your
2) When you experience a problem with the operation of your car, make a
mental as well as a written note of the conditions at the time of the problem,
ie: was the engine warm or cold, what were the weather conditions, at what
speed was the vehicle traveling etc.
3) ALWAYS ask your service advisor to check for outstanding factory
recalls on your vehicle. These are services provided free of charge by
4) Many drivability issues are covered under the emissions warranty.
This is extended past the normal drive train coverage in most cases. If the
fix for the problem is an emissions related part, there will be no charge to
the customer as long as the emissions warranty is still in effect. Too many
people have wasted their hard-earned money with a backyard mechanic in
an attempt to save a few dollars. Always return to the dealership service
department, especially with drivability issues.
5) The technicians are factory trained and work on the same problems every
day. They receive updates regarding service issues on a regular basis. There
is no need for paying for unnecessary trouble shooting in a garage where your
mechanic is not familiar with the operation of your vehicle. Go to the pros!
6) Develop a relationship with your service advisor. Always attempt to deal
with the same contact person in the department. Give them an opportunity
to know you as well as know your vehicle.
7) Always ask for an estimate before work is performed. Most
misunderstandings come from the fact that there was a breakdown in
communication regarding costs. Never be afraid to ask questions regarding
charges. This will save you much aggravation.
8) If you feel you must dispute your final bill, don’t confront the service
cashier. He or she has no idea of the work which was performed on your
vehicle. Always speak with your service advisor.
9.) Before the shop actually begins repairs, you have the right to ask for
replaced parts, unless those parts are under warranty. In that case, they must
returned by the shop to the manufacturer, distributor or other person. You may pay
an additional charge for retrieving parts because the shop usually can sell them.
10.) Last, but certainly not least, take your vehicle into the Service Department
in a clean condition. Show them that you take pride in your vehicle. Your
technician will know that you care.........and caring is contagious!