• Report: #783365

Complaint Review: PepBoys of Kissimmee, FL

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  • Submitted: Fri, September 30, 2011
  • Updated: Thu, October 06, 2011

  • Reported By: Sabrina — Kissimmee Florida United States of America
PepBoys of Kissimmee, FL
302 W. Vine St Kissimmee, Florida United States of America

PepBoys of Kissimmee, FL Pep Boys #310 Misdiagnosing, installation of random parts Kissimmee, Florida

*Author of original report: Newest update: 10/6/2011

*Author of original report: re: misdiagnosis

*UPDATE Employee: Not Misdiagnosis Pepboys Kissimmee

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OK, sent my Pontiac to PepBoys to get it fixed. It wouldn't start. I told them I thought it may be fuel related, but a previous diagnostics (from Pepboys ) indicated a Cam Position Sensor. Any rate, needed checked out. Guy said he wanted a new diagnostics, to keep from having to randomly replace parts looking for the answer. I said OK. Sounded pretty solid to me.  Then he calls back needing to put a battery in because mine would not take a charge. Yes it would, I know it would cause I charged it a year ago, and have been driving it since, with no problems. Until the car wouldn't start.

 "Fine", says I, "put in a new battery for 94 bucks so you can run your diagnostics". Didn't know they were going to charge me 15 dollars to put in this 94 dollar battery, of course. I called to check on it a few hours later, yes they put in the CPS but they recommended a 4 step pro fuel pkg and tune up and a tune-up pkg, because it looked like it needed it. This was somehow going to jump the price to over 900 bucks. yes, I told a couple people it was 700 bucks because I was starting to feel silly about how much it was costing, but my reasoning was that I was going to get a car totally redone, and purring like a kitten. Then I would have a vehicle that presumably lasted me til I graduate. It did. For a day and a half.

 Back to the story: I called them the next day (Sunday) and asked them how it was going. He said they got the car to start, but it would not stay running, they said it needed an ignition module. 120 bucks with labor run round 300 dollars. I said, put the breaks on pal, Im done with this. Forget the tune up and stuff, lets get the car running again. He said the tune up was done already. Really. A tune-up done on a car that isn't running. Right. So now we are looking at 1200 plus. I said Im not paying another dollar to get this car fixed. You guys don't know what you are doing. He said he talked to the supe, and she said eat the ignition module and the labor, get me the car, I ended up paying 800. The car ran like a charm til Wed, I get in it to go to class, won't start.  This is the same thing it was doing to begin with. So I towed it right back to PepBoys. Now, today, they said a "MasterTech" looked at it and said the fuel is white. I changed the fuel filter a month ago, and I didn't see any white fuel. It has a gas lid on it.   The diagnostics they ran has no codes written down so I can't figure out how much of that stuff should have been done. At the very least, the diagnostics was worthless, because they ended up randomly replacing parts anyways.

 Ended up with all that stuff, new belts, plugs and wires, and the cps unit, the module and some other thingy and no FIRE! For another 523 dollars they could hook me right up. The big issue is, this hapens a lot in America. Business doesn't do business professionally or ethically any more. I should have went and bought the tools and the fuel pump and changed the crap myself, and you can believe me, next time I will. But the more peeps do this, the worse it is for the economy. I am not the only person this stuff happens to. I bet there is a veritable army of people out there who just really don't want to do business with anyone. :( So where do we go from here?

 ****UPDATE****There was nothing wrong with the fuel system in my car. The problem is still in the CPS. First, the wiring harness was fried. Apparently they changed the plug thingy on the end but left the fried wiring while they started randomly replacing parts. Then, the sensor thing is both internal and external. The thing the plug plugs into has a magnet on the inside of the timing cover that sends a signal to the thing with the wires. The magnet also has to be replaced, and the new mechanic has to fish the old magnet out. Incidentally, this is the main reason i wanted a mechanic to do it in the first place. I read this on a Pontiac mechanix fix-it forum, and I don't have the tools to go this far with it, and its a bit above my pay grade. :)

 So...IF I had went ahead and let PepBoys drop the tank for 550 bucks, I would, once again, have gotten my car back still screwed up. And a "Master Tech" was the bright boy responsible for this newest diagnosis.  I think I should get my money back. First, the diagnostics report is blank, so I dunno if they should even have replaced the other stuff. 85 bucks for a 4 step fuel tune up pkg that apparently turned my fuel white. I told them they could take all the belts and battery stuff back off but they said my stuff had already been picked up and tossed. The new mechanic, fixing the real problem, is going to need 578 dollars. At the least, PepBoys should pay for this, since it was part of the first issue that was supposed to be fixed.

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 09/30/2011 01:56 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/PepBoys-of-Kissimmee-FL/Kissimmee-Florida-34741/PepBoys-of-Kissimmee-FL-Pep-Boys-310-Misdiagnosing-installation-of-random-parts-Kissim-783365. 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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Updates & Rebuttals

#1 Author of original report

Newest update: 10/6/2011

AUTHOR: Sabrina - (United States of America)

K, so I went to talk to Wanda with the receipts and stuff. Gotta say she was courteous and respectful. She has been in face to face meetings throughout this, courteous and respectful. She was a little miffed that I went viral with it, however. Well, I apologize for that, kinda. I wish she could see from my perspective though, which is that every successive visit got me further in debt and moved away from where I felt the problem was. My needs were not being met, and I was getting upset and frustrated. And I had to be "that guy" again, and that really had me off. But she was nice to me about things, I will say that. After having talked to Mark, she seemed to be a lot more understanding than she had conveyed earlier, so that gives me some hope. I'm sorry, people, I don't mind spending money when it is really needed, and when I have it. Yes, Bonnie is an old hooptie but til this thing fell off it was a reliable car, I just wanted it back. For 1700 bucks I could get another one though. I just wanted it to run again. If I had just gotten back a car that worked, for that original 900 some bucks, they would have gotten to replace every single piece of that car that needed replacing, as I got the money to get it done. But I can't afford to pay that kind of money twice to get something done, and it has always been my experience that the squeaky wheel gets the grease. :) But we will see how things progress from here, it is now out of her hands to someone else. If this new person is of a mind to make this right, I will still be a satisfied person. I may not have them work on my car again, because now I trust Mark, and that is just the way things go. But I will still tell the world that even though it was a rough time, Pep Boys WILL go the extra mile to make things right, and that is worth a lot, at least to me. :)
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#2 Author of original report

re: misdiagnosis

AUTHOR: Sabrina - (United States of America)

This will NOT be retracted until I have gotten my money back. Then, and only then, will i update that PepBoys of Kissimmee are reputable, and when they are wrong they admit it.  I may not know all of the exact terminology, but I understood enough of my problem to be able to communicate to the tech what I wanted done to my car.  I STILL have not gotten a copy of the diagnostics code ran on my car, despite having asked twice. The new mechanic at Smitty's Auto Repair found a code 41 on the car, which is the crank/ cam sensor code. Before i had talked to Pep Boys, I had talked with people via web, and at the Pontiac dealership and had gotten this information. I may have garbled my translation of the technical terms and descriptions but I knew enough to be able to communicate. The battery did have bad written on it. My uncle works for American Ambulance Supply, a place which makes and services emergency equipment. They have to exchange batteries at a certain time, whether they are bad or not. Every battery taken out is marked as bad, so that it doesnt get mixed up with the new ones. They have an option to buy those old batteries if they like. My uncle has 30 of them and sold that one to me for helping him stack some firewood. I used it to jumpstart a 4300 series Link-Belt Trackhoe a few times before charging it, bringing it to FL and putting it in my car. It has cranked the car with no problems until the car started refusing to start. Then it would drain it down. But this is the same battery that was in the car in March when they did they original diagnosis at pep boys, but I drove the car in that time, and nothing was said about it then. If they had charged it a couple hours, there would have been no problems.

Mark, at Smitty's, when he found the code 41, he looked at the sensor, saw it had been replaced but the wiring was shot. He replaced the wiring, but it still showed a code 41. This prompted him to check the cam gear. The magnet (piece of metal, whatever it is) that is supposed to be attached to the cam gear was missing. He replaced the cam gear. (Apparently you cannot buy just the sensor thing attached to the gear)The car runs perfectly fine now, starts every time, and runs on all cylinders. If I had a copy of the diagnostics from pep boys, I might be able to relent and negotiate a partial refund. But I do not know why they went to replacing the other parts instead of just fixing the first thing I asked them to fix. Given that every time the car went back, they went further away from the real problem, I can only assume that A) They had no clue what the problem was, and just threw parts at the car anyways or B) They were just trying to get as much money out of me as they could before fixing my car.
Mark has said that he has gotten two more fixup jobs from people dissatisfied with this particular pep boys just this week, AFTER I brought my car in. Mark fixed my car, replacing exactly what I asked, and what ended up being the problem, for just over 700 dollars. Pep boys had me at 1200 before I became dissatisfied and Wanda knocked off the ignition module and the labor, ostensibly because she does realize that it was not necessary. Had I had them drop the tank, that total would have reached over 1700 dollars, and it would not have fixed my problem. I did tell Jorge that the car had been sitting for a bit, but this was on the very last conversation we had, so it should not be brought into this debate. Yes, I did say yes to a few of those things, mainly because I thought the car was fixed, for just over 300, so I decided to show it a little love (to the tune of another 600 odd) in appreciation. I had NO idea that the car was still not running at that time, or I would have told them we need to wait until the car is actually running before we throw a bunch of extras into it. I do not have the money to just be throwing it away, and some things have to be prioritized. It IS an old car. So for 1700 bucks total, I could have just gotten another car, and would have, had I been told the true information. I was NOT told about the 15.00 labor charge for the battery installation. Common sense should likely dictate there would be one, but my common sense told me that if you manage to sell someone a 50 dollar product for 94.00, you should at least eat the 30 seconds it takes to set it in, and hook it up. Everyone has told me what I have known anyways. I should have had the car towed somewhere else the second they told me I needed a 100.00 battery.

Bottom line: Pep Boys had this car first. They had first crack at it because I believed in them. But there came a point where I had to cut my losses and go somewhere else, before I ended up into them for 2 grand, and POSSIBLY not having a running car, even at that point. Oh, and by the way, it took 6 of them to push it into the bay? There is half the problem. Myself and the tow truck guy pushed it out of my driveway, with an uphill slant, and a little ways on the street, to get it lined up for the winch to pull it onto the bed of the truck. You should see me! I weigh about 130 soaking wet! Nice try, Wanda.
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#3 UPDATE Employee

Not Misdiagnosis Pepboys Kissimmee

AUTHOR: Wanda - (United States of America)

To all whom are interested:

I am the service manager at the kissimmee florida Pepboys which with great personal and professional pride i provide service to many local and out of town visitiors.  Being in the automotive repair business is not very easy these days with the industry's reputation .We find ourselves every once in a while with a very dissatified customer that no matter how we try to explain how the repair or diagnostic process goes either they don't understand it or just don't care to listen and we didn't do the job right comes about.  I would like to begin by defending our reputation in this situation.  The vehicle in question was brought in via tow truck, the tow driver informed my advisor that customer informed him that vehicle was not starting and that he wished to have a crank sensor replaced.  Advisor then spoke with customer and explain that rather then throw parts at the vehicle he recommended a no start diagnostic.  Customer agreed, advisor assigns vehicle to technician and immediately when tech opens hood sees the battery has BAD written on it so he tests battery to confirm what is written on it.  He connected to tester to see if battery would hold a load static was 10.3 v and then with the load on it dropped to 6 volts.  Tech notified advisor of findings and advised that it needs a battery first to then proceed with diagnosis. Advisor contacts customer and informs customer of the first step regarding the battery since he doesn't even have a working battery. Advisor informed customer of price and installation charges and customer again agreed. Tech is given approval to begin installation of battery and proceed with no start diagnosis. Tech notes now battery installed vehicle now cranks but still not starting. now tech proceeds by checking fuel pressure had static and cranked at 47psi, checked spark, had no spark in any of the cylinders. Now tech begins his flow chart procedures step 1 start by checking crank sensor,  it has no signal being sent checked with volt meter also checked ohms resistance and it was out of spec. This procedure confirmed crank sensor replacement, tech along with that also made recommendations for a tuneup which consisted of spark plugs, wires and a 4 step induction service per mileage and per the conditions of the vehicle since according to information provided by the customer the vehicle had been sitting for a long time. Customer was then again contacted by advisor and informed of findings and technician recommendations, not requirements and customer made an informed decision of yes.  Wires were shot and plugs showed visual damage and wear gap on plug removed from cylinder #5 was closed.  After finishing installation of plugs, wires, crank sensor and performing 4 step fuel induction service fired up vehicle and it started up, however tech notes that vehicle was still running rough.  Tech now proceeded with rechecking fuel pressures and it ws at 42-47-50 psi upon running still within specs, spark was weak but working and car misfiring, continued diagnostic flow chart and now stated to replace ignition module, again contacted customer as required and customer became upset therefore I the manager was informed and i customer satisfied it no charge and gave a discount in addition to the customer. Vehicle left pepboys running tech got vehicle from no start to starting and driveable.  Customer was always kept informed throughout entire diagnostics and findings he was also advised that a Driveablity Evaluation was recommended since vehicle still had issues. Vehicle took 6 people to push into bay since brakes were so badly rusted up it would not move, vehicle also had lots of corrosion and many other problems which the customer was advised of that as well.  Customer declined driveability evaluation.  Now, 2 days later the vehicle returns customer claims doing the same thing I took the call from the customer and immediately asked him to tow it back to my store at no charge to him he claimed vehicle did not start when tow truck dropped vehicle off and we went out to vehicle to bring into the bay in started up. Now i assigned a Master Tech to re-evaluate the vehicle, Master Tech goes over the previous information and confirms everything was done correctly and is working properly.  the master tech is now questioning the integrity of the fuel pump?  Having done this type of work  for many years these vehicle are known for fuel pump failures due to wiring harness at the pump going bad.  Rechecked static pressures and running pressures and are within specs so a volume test was performed and everything was ok. During a test drive the vehicle sputtered and tried to stall. I returned to the shop to re-install the pressure gauge and taped it to the windshield and took another tech along with me for another test drive. Again, during test drive vehicle sputtered, this time the other tech was able to observe the pressure of the fuel system when the vehicles engine sputtered, the needle of the gauge would pulsate between 10-20psi, well below factory spec once returned to shop took sample of fuel and it was milky.  Master Tech  informed me that the tank would need to be dropped to inspect pump, harness and the level of gas in the tank as these sending units are also known to go when the vehicle sits for too long, If everything looked okay then technician would have recommended the fuel pump.  However this all would have been prevented had the customer agreed to do the driveability evaluation that was recommended. Therefore to sum things up and give face to the accusations of misdiagnosis we followed all procedures via all data, and pepboys and provide service repairs and recommendations based on MAP Guidelines which is the Motorist Assurance Program and like i mentioned before in the beginning I take great pride in the service we provide our customers and have even tried to explain myself and the procedures to the customer and he still feels the need to give us a bad rap when in fact the vehicle has multiple issues that can seem the same and in fact are not thats why he was advised to have a driveability evaluation done.  I continue to provide professional service to my customers and hope that this can certainly  be retracted. 

Service Manager
Pepboys Store #310
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