In November of 2008, I took my 2003 Nissan Sentra to Maroone Nissan of Miami on SW 8th street. The car shook while I was driving it and the "check engine" light was on.
The service rep told me that my car had a "broken head gasket" and that I would need a new engine. The estimate was approximately 5,000.00. I argued that I had just had a "broken head gasket" replaced a little over a year ago. They responded by telling me that Nissan's warranty on repairs lasts only a year. I told them all to go to Hell!
I'm not a mechanic, but something didn't seem right. I knew my Dad (a mechanic of over 30yrs) would be coming back from an extended vacation soon, so, I drove the car home and parked it in my driveway. I had to have a reliable car for work, so I went out and bought a new car.(NOT A NISSAN!)
My Dad just got back last week from his vacation (he's retired). He looked at the car and replaced 4 sparkplugs. The car runs fine now! He also said that the engine had never been "opened" and implied that my original "head gasket" repair may have just been a warranty scam.
He (my Dad) explained that one way that "service repair centers" make money is by reporting false repairs to whomever warrants the vehicle. The consumer is unaware and doesn't get too upset because most of the costs are absorbed by someone else.
I've already called the Consumer Protection Division of Miami and will be filing a report with them. And I'll be asking around to see if there are any other agencies I can report this to. Maybe the Florida State Attorneys Office will be interested?
In the meantime, my niece just became the proud owner of a 2003 Nissan Sentra! AND I WILL NEVER BUY A NISSAN AGAIN!!!!!!!
Yasmina in Miami