• Report: #1155485

Complaint Review: Auto Top Factory LLC

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  • Submitted: Tue, June 17, 2014
  • Updated: Tue, June 17, 2014

  • Reported By: Grant — Clearwater Florida
Auto Top Factory LLC
Nationwide USA

Auto Top Factory LLC, Hutch Dekirmendjian, Hratch Dekirmendjian, Liza Dekirmendjian Defective Convertible Top and 2 Months of Lies and Broken Promises Van Nuys California

*Author of original report: The Lies continue!!

*Author of original report: eBay User ID: autotopfactoryllc

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On April 14th, 2014 I purchased a replacement convertible top for my 1999 porsche Boxster from Auto Top factory LLC via Ebay. Paid $319.00 via PayPal. The company claims to offer a six (6) year warranty against manufacturer defects.

I received the top on 18 April 2014 and installed it that same weekend. By the second day after install I discovered that, due to incorrect manufacturing, the guide straps that guide the top into the roof channels during closing had torn away from the top (the guide straps were sewn the wrong way around with the rubberized side facing inwards which would not allow the straps to slide along the roof frame bars as intended)) and thus my top would not close without having two people outside the car during closing (to manually guide the top into the roof channels).

I contacted the company on 23 April and they were very apologetic and offered to send me a replacement top right away or to help me fix the issue. I agreed to try and fix it first rather than spending another 8 hours or more removing the old and re-installing a new top (again). The company send me replacement guide straps and a needle and thread, which used - per their instructions - to sew the new straps onto the roof fabric. Unfortunately this solution did not work as my sewing skills are far from factory-precise and the new straps caused the roof fabric to be too fat to fit into the channel and thus still required two people outside the car during closing to manually guide the roof fabric into the channels, plus when closed it now has bulges along the roof line due to the fat new straps having being sewn in by hand.

Due to this I emailed the company again on 6 May 2014 and told them that I would like to accept their offer of a replacement top. I received no email reply, so on 8 May 2014 I called the company and spoke to Liza Dekirmendjian. Liza then told me that they would replace the top only after I removed it and shipped the old, defective one back to them. I became upset due to the fact that I had spent the last two weeks messing around with this top trying to correct the defects and that I could not remove the top from my car that is parked outdoors and wait two weeks for a new one to arrive, especially as we were entering the rainy season. Hutch Dekirmendjian then came to the phone and apologized to me. He told me that customer satisfaction is their prime concern and that he would send me a new top right away, along with a pre-paid shipping label to return the old one in the same box once I do the new install. In order to compensate me for the hassle he also offered to upgrade the top to a glass-window version. I accepted his offer and he promised to ship the new top no later than Monday, May 12th.

On 13 May 2014, one day after I was promised it would ship, I received an email from Liza saying:

"Hello Grant.
Per your conversation with Hutch, we will be sending you a new top for your Boxster. The tops are in production and should ship out no later than Monday. We will probably expedite the shipping to be sure you receive it quickly.
Thank you.
Liza".

This was the very last email I ever received from the company, even though I emailed them six times since asking about the status of my shipment.

Note, that this was day 30 since purchase, and also the final day that I would be eligible to file an eBay claim against them for a misrepresented item. At the time I did not realize it but I now suspect that this delay was very calculated from the start, as you shall see below.

On 13 May 2014 I replied to Liza's email asking why it had been delayed when Hutch had promised me it would ship on the 12th. I received no reply.

On 19 May 2014 I emailed asking for a status update on the shipment. I received no reply.

On 20 May 2014, after numerous attempts, I finally reached Hutch by telephone. He was very friendly and said they'd been out of stock on the glass windows, but he had them now and would be shipping my top right away. He also offered to throw in some double-sided tape and a defroster cable to make up for the delay.

On 2 June 2014, after still having received no shipment, I emailed asking for a status update on the shipment. I received no reply.

On 3 June 2014 I emailed asking for a status update on the shipment. I received no reply.

I placed at least one dozen phone calls (likely more) during this same time period but the phone was never answered (and no voicemail or answering machine picked up).

On 5 june 2014, I finally reached hutch by telephone. Again, he was super friendly and apologized for the delay saying that he went to Vegas this time as a reason for not having sent the package (?). He promised he would go right now and package it up and sned it to me. he also offered to throw in a headliner as an added bonus to make up for the delays. I, being skeptical, asked him to clarify that he would send the shipment that very day. he replied that yes he would. i asked him to call me back or email me with the package tracking number. he promised that he would post the tracking number to eBay that night and would also email it to me.

Needless to say I never received a tracking number, nor any email from him.

On 9 June 2014 I emailed both hutch & Liza asking for the tracking number. I received no reply.

On 10 June 2014 I began calling by phone every day, and many days as many as 5-10 times a day. The phone would just ring and ring.

On 11 June 2014 I called from a friend's phone (with an out of state number) and Hutch answered. I said hello and verified that it was him. He said yes. Then I told him who was calling and he suddenly said he couldn't hear me and hung up. I called back and, of course, the phone simply rang and rang. I called about 6 or 7 times until i gave up.

On 13 June 2014 I called from another friend's phone with an entirely different area code, and Liza answered. I asked to please speak to Hutch. She asked who was calling and I said "Grant". Hutch came to the phone and said "Robert?". I said "No, this is Grant". He then did the same routine as before, saying "Hello? Hello? I can't hear you?" and hung up. Again I called back numerous times but it rang and rang as usual.

On 14 June 2014 I open a case with eBay, but because it is over 30 days from purchase all they will do is facilitate communication between us but will not enforce any action whatsoever. In my communication I stated a very brief description of the above and stated that all i wanted was simply a working top as promised numerous times. Hutch replied back saying that I was demanding a refund without being willing to return the top first and that they refused to speak to me any further about it.

So, to summarize: I purchased a convertible top from the company, installed it, but due to manufacturing defects it does not operate as promised under their warranty. I cannot truly use the car for its intended purpose (being a convertible) because I have to have two other people with me any time I have to put the top up properly. The company was very nice and friendly all the way up until my 30-day eBay recourse period expired and then stopped communicating. I believe that the times I have been able to reach Hutch by phone surprised him and he has blanatly lied to me on those occassions simply to mollify me and get me off the phone. I believe he never has had any intention of making good on this sale.

Even so, I don't want a refund. I simply want a working top as promised and (apparently) warrantied.


This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 06/17/2014 12:55 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/Auto-Top-Factory-LLC/nationwide/Auto-Top-Factory-LLC-Hutch-Dekirmendjian-Hratch-Dekirmendjian-Liza-Dekirmendjian-Defec-1155485. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

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#1 Author of original report

The Lies continue!!

AUTHOR: GB - ()

On June 20th, 2014 I was able to reach Hutch (by calling from a google voice phone number that is in a different area code from mine). This time I made sure he could hear me okay before I told him who i was, so he couldn't use his old "I can't hear you" trick.  

This time, he pretended to be at a total loss as to what I was calling about. When i told him that I still had not received my top, he pretended to get upset and said that Lisa (his wife who he pretends is just an employee) is "this close" to being fired. He told me that he'd had similar complaints from other customers and that she was "on thin ice".  But, don't worry, he would take care of this personally!

He then proceeded to tell me the following:

1. That he had lots of tops "on the shelf" and was pretty sure that mine had been shipped that day, but that he would go check and see, and if mine had not shipped then he would personally ship it immediately.

2. That he was going to throw in a headliner and other goodies to prove to me that customer service is his #1 prioirty.

3. That, to further demonstrate his pure character, he was going to refund my original purchase price to my PayPal account "within the hour" and once I'd received the new top and installed it that I should then pay him whatever I felt was fair. Wow, what a guy!

4. That he would call me back within the hour with a tracking number for my package.

I should have know, of course, that he was just blowing smoke up my a** as usual, but I can't conceive of someone being that brazen as to just lie through their teeth and I naively hoped that maybe this time he was telling the truth.

As a precaution, i posted this note on eBay so that I had a written record of it:

"Hutch, It was good speaking to you on the telephone tonight (Wednesday 6/18/14 7:49 PM EST) and I'm very glad we we were able to work things out to both our satisfaction. I'm posting this follow-up on eBay just so that we both have a written record of the conversation. As discussed, we agreed to the following: 1. You will be refunding $319 to my paypal account within the hour. 2. You will see if my replacement top (glass window, defroster cable & headliner) shipped today and, if so, you will email me the tracking number. 3. If it did not ship today, you will call or email me right away and let me know and I will have a friend or family member in LA stop by your shop tomorrow to pick it up on my behalf. 4. Once I have installed the replacement top I will then pay you cost of my original purchase. If there's anything I missed please let me know. "

After three hours and no call back I tried him again. No answer, over and over, just as before.

That night, I get the following message on eBay from him:

"I don't think my prior message went through... I can understand that you would want to return the plastic window top and get a glass window at the same cost. Per our policy, we would gladly stitch the Velcro strap that came apart during installation. After consulting with my partner, we have decided that we simply cannot afford to send out additional merchandise, especially a higher cost item. We will not have a replacement for at least two weeks. Even then, we would prefer if you purchased a replacement item from another seller. I hope you understand our position. We will send you a full refund once our item is returned. Once installed, we cannot even sell the item you are returning, so we are at a complete loss. For our low price point, we simply cannot afford it. You may take two weeks to send it back as we understand that you want to have another top on your car. I hope you understand. Hutch."

Notice that in a matter of hours he suddenly went from having lots on the shelf to suddenly not having a replacement available for two week and, interestingly, his "employee" Lisa has suddenly become his "partner".

 

The next day, using the same tricky phone shenanigans, I was able to reach Hutch one last time. When I told him who it was he said in a friendly tone, as if we were best friends, "Hi, how are you doing?"  I said to him simply: "You lied to me again."  He just hung up the phone and that was it.  I have never been able to reach anyone at their office again since.

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#2 Author of original report

eBay User ID: autotopfactoryllc

AUTHOR: GB - ()

This company's handle on eBay is "autotopfactoryllc".

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