• Report: #84619

Complaint Review: VIP Auto Parts

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  • Submitted: Fri, March 19, 2004
  • Updated: Wed, June 25, 2008

  • Reported By:skowhegan Maine
VIP Auto Parts
Main Street Waterville, Maine U.S.A.

Vip Auto Parts stupidity Waterville Maine

* : Common sense should rule at VIP Auto

*Consumer Comment: auto zone not necessarily to blame

*Consumer Comment: VIPs Fault??

*Consumer Comment: VIPs Fault??

*Consumer Comment: VIPs Fault??

*Consumer Comment: Use you head...

*Consumer Comment: In all fairness to VIP and the counter guy

*Consumer Suggestion: v.i.p. is a garage

*Consumer Comment: seek a garage or just get a clue about auto's

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About a month ago, I went to VIP to get a directional bulb for my car (which was brand new). I got the bulb and the parts rep asked if there was anything else he could do for me. I asked him to give me a price to install the bulb for me.

He couldnt do it!! Saying that it would depend on what side of the car it was and how hard it would be to find where it went. That is what would determine the cost of changing the bulb for me.

I looked at him as straight faced as i could and asked, " So it would depend on side and if you could find where the bulb is?" He said yes. "And it would also depend on what "mechanic" you had install it too? If it took a smart mechanic 5 minutes it would cost less? then if you had a moron and it too an hour it would cost more?"

His answer......... "Um, I guess" Now please someone tell me the reasoning behind that.... maybe they should hire somone with an IQ higher than a brake shoe to give answers behind the counter. Needless to say, the answer i got from another vip worker was.... it shouldnt have cost anything.

VIP no longer gets my business... i own 17 company vehicles and would love to be able to run across town to a parts store and get whatever i need for the vehicles.. but with the rudeness of the employees, the uncertainties in their answers...i think i would rather spend a little more money and take it to the other side of town... central maine motors or Autozone... and be greeted with respect. I'm beginning to think, upon hearing other stories from businesses and friends that it isn't just me...

Donna
skowhegan, Maine
U.S.A.

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 03/19/2004 09:53 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/VIP-Auto-Parts/Waterville-Maine-04901/Vip-Auto-Parts-stupidity-Waterville-Maine-84619. 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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REBUTTALS & REPLIES:
0Author 9Consumer 0Employee/Owner
Updates & Rebuttals

#1

Common sense should rule at VIP Auto

AUTHOR: Tedcohen - (U.S.A.)

If VIP was on its toes it would realize that a satisfied customer is a repeat customer.

The customer who spends $1 for a directional bulb and gets a smile and "of course we would be glad to do that" when he or she asks to have the bulb installed will return again and again for more products and services.

In other words, the few minutes it would take VIP to gladly help Donna in Skowhegan replace her bulb would reap rewards a thousand times over.

Donna would pass the word to her friends and her family, and those folks would pass the word that VIP is a place to do business at.

For instance I asked a VIP tech in Saco to help me remove a frozen bolt from a trailer hitch and he did it with a smile. His name is Casey and he is a credit to VIP's reputation.

This is what I am talking about - attitude, pure and simple.

That's all Donna really wanted - someone who might help her in her time of need.

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#2 Consumer Comment

auto zone not necessarily to blame

AUTHOR: Xibitr - (U.S.A.)

dear donna in skowhegan: i think that the counterman you talked with was being honest although not really complete. some lights are very hard to get to (removing the grill, bumper, or trunk panels etc.). one side of the car may be different from the other so there could be a difference in the amount of time to change one or another bulb. changing a bulb on a motor vehicle is not the same as changing one at home; sometimes it is very time consuming to get to the bulb and that would depend on the vehicle involved.
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#3 Consumer Comment

VIPs Fault??

AUTHOR: Danielle - (U.S.A.)

I understand that the person that submitted this must have been angry for not getting a straight answer. i agree with the rebuttal from numerous sources saying he should have asked someone in the right dept. my boy friend actually works at VIP and i find it hard to believe that you would have a problem with them. there signature line is how can i go the extra mile for you? which means they would have put that light bulb in for you had you just asked. it is very difficult to determine how long it might have taken cause light bulbs are not wasy easy things to get.

habe you ever tried to change your own license plate bulb? it takes a very long time,
now for the cost of replacing it most places will just go out and put it in for you prvovided you bought it there. im sure VIP isnt much different. but the the person who told you the cost could vary is correct there are people that work there that get paid hourly and some get paid by the job it all depends on which one that does it. none of them are stupid and could all ahve done it and im sure in around the same amount of time. But all and all i think that the rip off statement is not a valid statement and being from both sides i think that the person who posted this might want to rethink VIP's service.

One bad experiance could change a persons out looks indefinitly and its not a valid way to think about something. Paying twice the amount and traveling across town doesnt make much sense. just go in and ask to talk to the right person. the people there are all friendly and they will point you in the right direction. Thanks.
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#4 Consumer Comment

VIPs Fault??

AUTHOR: Danielle - (U.S.A.)

I understand that the person that submitted this must have been angry for not getting a straight answer. i agree with the rebuttal from numerous sources saying he should have asked someone in the right dept. my boy friend actually works at VIP and i find it hard to believe that you would have a problem with them. there signature line is how can i go the extra mile for you? which means they would have put that light bulb in for you had you just asked. it is very difficult to determine how long it might have taken cause light bulbs are not wasy easy things to get.

habe you ever tried to change your own license plate bulb? it takes a very long time,
now for the cost of replacing it most places will just go out and put it in for you prvovided you bought it there. im sure VIP isnt much different. but the the person who told you the cost could vary is correct there are people that work there that get paid hourly and some get paid by the job it all depends on which one that does it. none of them are stupid and could all ahve done it and im sure in around the same amount of time. But all and all i think that the rip off statement is not a valid statement and being from both sides i think that the person who posted this might want to rethink VIP's service.

One bad experiance could change a persons out looks indefinitly and its not a valid way to think about something. Paying twice the amount and traveling across town doesnt make much sense. just go in and ask to talk to the right person. the people there are all friendly and they will point you in the right direction. Thanks.
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#5 Consumer Comment

VIPs Fault??

AUTHOR: Danielle - (U.S.A.)

I understand that the person that submitted this must have been angry for not getting a straight answer. i agree with the rebuttal from numerous sources saying he should have asked someone in the right dept. my boy friend actually works at VIP and i find it hard to believe that you would have a problem with them. there signature line is how can i go the extra mile for you? which means they would have put that light bulb in for you had you just asked. it is very difficult to determine how long it might have taken cause light bulbs are not wasy easy things to get.

habe you ever tried to change your own license plate bulb? it takes a very long time,
now for the cost of replacing it most places will just go out and put it in for you prvovided you bought it there. im sure VIP isnt much different. but the the person who told you the cost could vary is correct there are people that work there that get paid hourly and some get paid by the job it all depends on which one that does it. none of them are stupid and could all ahve done it and im sure in around the same amount of time. But all and all i think that the rip off statement is not a valid statement and being from both sides i think that the person who posted this might want to rethink VIP's service.

One bad experiance could change a persons out looks indefinitly and its not a valid way to think about something. Paying twice the amount and traveling across town doesnt make much sense. just go in and ask to talk to the right person. the people there are all friendly and they will point you in the right direction. Thanks.
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#6 Consumer Comment

Use you head...

AUTHOR: Andy - (U.S.A.)

VIP is just like any other auto-related organization that both sells parts and performs services. If you went into a car dealer for a bulb they would send you to the parts department. If you then asked them then how much to install the bulb, they'd send you to the service department. VIP is the same. The guy SHOULD have sent you to their service counter (likely 15 feet away). He didn't. Instead he DID YOU A SERVICE by giving you the best answer he could - which happened to be the correct one. Without looking in a manual or asking one of the techs (that's not his department), there is no way for him to accurately assess how much it would cost to install that bulb.

Further, he was correct in telling you it is possible that the cost could vary depending on which tech did the work. Under most circumstances, labor rates are calculated using a "flat rate" manual - an estimate of how much time it takes to perform specific repairs. Under certain conditions, however (particularly with regard to vehicles which are rusting, or where there are known difficulties with specific makes and models), they may switch the labor rate to reflect the actual time required to do the job. If this happens, yes, a good mechanic would do it faster than a mediocre one, and thus save you money. If you want the job done while you wait, then you get whichever mechanic is available. If you want a specific mechanic to do the work you'll likely have to schedule the job and bring your vehicle back.

So, the moral of the story here is that the consumer didn't use his head. Asking the parts person how much service would cost is only slightly better than asking the cashier (or even a salesperson at a car dealer), because he at least deals with the service end on a regular basis - but he is still obviously the wrong person to ask.

And finally, did the consumer try to talk to anyone *at* VIP about the apparent discrepancy in the information he received? I doubt it, or the service guy would have given him the same answer *I* just did. The consumer's complaint is totally irresponsible. Having been a service manager myself many moons ago, I can tell you from experience it is at least as frustrating dealing with stupid customers as it is for customers to deal with stupid counter help. Use your head. If you have a question, ASK it!

However, relating specifically to own experiences with VIP Auto, I will state without reservation that they are my first choice for any repairs I don't do myself, and my first choice for parts for the repairs I *do* perform myself. I find they are an excellent balance of price and efficiency, and are remarkably fair with regard to addressing and correcting any complaints or concerns I might have. If the individual who filed this report doesn't read the rebuttals and re-address his own ignorance, I say VIP is likely better off without him as a customer. Let him go somewhere else and pay twice as much for half the service... .
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#7 Consumer Comment

In all fairness to VIP and the counter guy

AUTHOR: Scott - (U.S.A.)

Hi Donna-

Unless you've worked an an array of vehicles, foreign & domestic, you probably wouldn't understand the depth of difficulty you can run into with something as simple as "changing a light bulb".

Many European vehicles make bulb changes a jiffy, where I've encountered some American vehicles that make me realize why the US has problems selling cars. I own a '99 Yukon that requires a special tool to unscrew the rear tail assembly, or you will most likely lose the screws. Then there's a cheap holding plate for the bulbs, that must fail on every one of them, causing a bulb not to work.

I actually had my local service shop try to replace one of these bulbs for me last year while my vehicle was getting an oil change, and they ended-up shorting-out the entire circuit, leaving me w/ no lights (including headlamps) after hours, when I picked-up my vehicle. They didn't know what they had done, and nobody there to fix it. Look at the mess they (I) ended-up with, just attempting to change a bulb. I had to drive home in the dark without headlamps.

So your guy at VIP has similar possibilities running through his head, and obviously didn't have time to go through all the possibilities for you, so instead chose to cut to the quick & tell you it's not a flat price.

I have nothing to do with VIP nor am I in that business. I service my own vehicles when I can & others on occasion. I know how something seemingly simple can be quite complex. I'm also a business owner who has seen customers have heart failure because they know nothing about how intense a seemingly simple job can be, and leave thinking we're ripping them off. (when we actually lost money) Never worth the aggravation, we lose money, but the business always accommodates as a service.

Maybe you really did have a simple job, but the VIP guy obviously didn't know what your light assembly was like, making it impossible to quote you on the spot.

Scott
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#8 Consumer Suggestion

v.i.p. is a garage

AUTHOR: Steven - (U.S.A.)

well it sounds like the fella that suggest you find a garage and not a part store dosent know what he's talking about. v.i.p. is a GARAGE ! they advertise for service all the time ! so you should get a clue b4 you make someone else feel like they did something wrong. and yes vip is a aweful garage anyway! i have never seen good tech. service from there stores.
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#9 Consumer Comment

seek a garage or just get a clue about auto's

AUTHOR: Mike - (U.S.A.)

People who know nothing about auto's like how to change their own bulbs should first go to a garrage that will fix it for you not an auto parts store which ussually requires you to have some knowledge of auto's to start with!!!
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