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Not a question. Just a rant.

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MarineGrunt profile image

Feb 21, 2013, 6:34 PM

Post #1 of 4 (1710 views)
Not a question. Just a rant. Sign In

I hope this is okay to post this here. If not, please move it where it needs to be. Just a comment on some of these quick lube places. I'm sure anyone who has been around the forum reading posts has seen posts where people have taken their vehicles to a quick lube place. It's funny how after someone takes their car to a quick lube to get work done they usually come here asking questions because either their original problem wasn't fixed or they have a new problem.

My sister's friend was losing coolant. I told her a week ago it looked like it was coming from the intake. I told her I'd take a look at it for her. She didn't want to bother me so took it to a quick lube place who claims they do just about any work to a car. They even claim to swap out engines. I was talking to her yesterday and she said they wanted to charge her $300 to order and install a hose. They said it was molded and was a special order that would cost $150. They then called her and told her that her alternator was bad. She then called me and asked if I'd replace for her. I told her to get her car before they replaced the hose or alternator. She got her car, picked up a new alternator, and dropped it off. After replacing the alternator I then started checking for the coolant leak. It took me all of 5 minutes to hook up a pressure tester and see that in fact the intake is what's leaking and there's no hose leaking. My guess it the quick lube place wasn't going to even change whatever hose they said was leaking. I need to find out how much they charged her for the wrong diagnosis so I can go over there and have some words with them.

I guess my point is that you're much better off going to an actual mechanic. If you go to a mechanic, and have a problem, you deal with the owner and not some putz who calls himself a mechanic after watching a 3 hour video. I wouldn't trust a quick lube place to do an oil change. I was in high school and needed an quick oil change so went to one. Three hours later my oil light came on. I pulled over, popped the hood, and noticed I didn't have an oil cap. I had to walk to a gas station to get some oil. I then had to take my sock off to use as an "oil cap" so I could make it to a parts store to get a new one. My dad called and reamed them a good one. They ended up paying to steam clean my engine and they offered us 10 free oil changes. My dad told them what to do with their 10 free oil changes.

So please, don't waste your time with these places. They take advantage of any situation they think they can. You'll end up spending more money in the long run than if you would've taken your vehicle to a real mechanic. Not only on the correct diagnosis and parts but you'll also spend a lot on Tylenol from the headaches you'll have.

And that's my rant for the day.

Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Discretesignals profile image

Feb 21, 2013, 6:58 PM

Post #2 of 4 (1695 views)
Re: Not a question. Just a rant. Sign In

I agree, quick lube places are just for changing oil and very minor maintenance. Don't let them steam clean your engine...LOL.

Since we volunteer our time and knowledge, we ask for you to please follow up when a problem is resolved.

Veteran / Moderator
nickwarner profile image

Feb 21, 2013, 7:09 PM

Post #3 of 4 (1677 views)
Re: Not a question. Just a rant. Sign In

Moved you to open posting instead of car troubleshooting MG. Thought it was a better place to put this. I see your point. I have always advised people to not have their engine touched by someone who doesn't know how to rebuild it if they needed to. The quick lube places are handy though, I've made thousands of dollars fixing their mistakes over the years. A lot of the issues seem to come from two things, ignorance and corporate pressure.

Obviously a lack of skill, tools and knowledge combine within the heads of these guys and because they work on cars to a small extent they start thinking they know more than they do. They know just enough to have false confidence, and thats where the most dangerous thing you can hand them is a wrench. It happens.

Also realize that these corporate chain type places that do a lot of PM work have a set structure where some bean counter that doesn't know anything about cars decides that to get the proper profit for the big wigs they need to have an average upsell of X dollars per car. So you go in for an oil change and they want you to change every single fluid in the car, wipers, engine decarbonizing, anything they can come up with. A friend went to one of these the day after he put new wipers on his truck. They tried to sell him new ones. They tried to tell him his air filter needed to be changed, not noticing he has a K&N cold air intake only 3 months old. Told him he needed a trans flush and brake fluid flush because the fluid was bad. Funny thing though, I personally did those fluids when I installed the cold air intake. He had enough sense to decline the work and pay for just the oil change. Counter guy tried to convince him further telling him it would cost him in the long run. At that point my friend set him straight on the facts of the matter.

Good thing you're handy with a wrench. Looks like your sister's friend will be hanging out more often.

Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Tom Greenleaf profile image

Feb 24, 2013, 2:59 PM

Post #4 of 4 (1651 views)
Re: Not a question. Just a rant. Sign In

MG - Those places scare me. They certainly are handy for lots of folks if all was on target. Had a second job for 12 years and worked on company cars. Later not allowed as a "conflict of interest" so did have to deal with these 10 minute places some. OMG!

I'm not in this world to bash or hate anyone for anything that is of good intention. Those places now long history and steer anyone I know away from are all over this area too.

You just know the game is fast. Bulk products that are cheaper by a lot that way. Not my job to watch them but clearly the basic training lacks in most cases and I don't want to paint them all as bad.

Forever trying to sell more than you might really need.

YOU are way beyond any average DIYer and certainly can do better. I suggest don't blame the workers. They are doing what they are told and shown what to do. I'm a soft tough - they are people too. I really do believe good intentions are at heart but it's just not a good format for things that making mistakes can cost thousands! We know that!

My days are done with this and will still near kill myself trying for my own stuff. If necessary I will pay the price for the right work with the right products by techs who would be way above a basic oil change service but you have to take that seriously as the risks as said are crazy.

Gotta go shovel some more out there. Damn total slush crap that can't be allowed to freeze as we know,


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