Here is the letter I sent ATK Engines:
16 September, 2004
3210 South Croddy Way
Santa Ana, CA 92704
Re: Claim # 4201841
In early July, 2004, I ordered a rebuilt engine from a Quadratec catalogue, which they resell from ATK. It is a 2.5l, 4 cylinder engine for my 1989 Jeep Wrangler, # DA28, $1549 + $345 core.
The new engine was delivered on 8 July 2004 and it was installed by the mechanics at 14th Street Shell Station in Atlanta, GA. When the work was done and the engine turned over the first time, we immediately had some problems with overheating, and after a few days of new thermostats and hoses and nothing working, I finally took it to Buckhead Jeep to have them look at it. I didn't return it to the 14th Street Shell Station because of the time it would take for them to get back to it, plus, I wanted more qualified mechanics to look at the Jeep.
At Buckhead Jeep, they performed tests and checks on the engine and thought it might be the radiator, so I gave them the go ahead to install a new one. However, the engine still overheated. I finally called Quadratec and informed them of the situation and they gave me contact info to ATK. I called and was told the mechanic working on the engine had to call and open a claim, information which I passed on to Buckhead Jeep.
Over the next two weeks the mechanics dealt with Buckhead Jeep, and after a month of rental cars and hassles, it was finally ready and picked up on 3 September with a bill for $2094.02 ($1857 for the engine repair). Evidently there was an issue with the heads and they were sent off to be repaired.
When I later talked to an ATK customer sales rep, I discovered that there was something called the GoldSeal Service Agreement , of which I had no knowledge of. When I bought the engine from Quadratec, they made no effort to inform me that for an extra $185 such a warranty was available, something which I most likely would have purchased.
I am aware that under my current warranty I am only reimbursed for $45 of mechanics labor. I find this somewhat hard to believe, as in Atlanta I couldn't find any experienced mechanics under $65 an hour, and those were places I would hesitate to bring my vehicle to. I am aware that if I had been given the opportunity to purchase the extended warranty the labor would have been reimbursed up to $85, which I find to be far more reasonable. I find myself in a bad situation of being stuck with a large bill, which by the way is $237 more than the engine cost!
Anyway, after sending in all the paperwork, I was informed by ATK claims department that they were waiting on a carbon test among other things. After talking with the mechanics, who said they were never told by ATK to perform a carbon test, nor were they told to send the faulty parts in. Evidently there has been a breakdown in communication between the ATK technicians and Buckhead Jeep.
We are currently in a deadlock, as ATK is refusing to honor the claim, and Buckhead Jeep is saying they did everything ATK told them. By the way, when I first called ATK, the claims manager told me he had only three telephonic records on the claim, none from the mechanics. However, when I was in my lawyers office seeking advice, I was told much different information, as in reference to the carbon test. If there were no record of conversations between ATK and the Jeep dealer, as ATK claims, then how were the mechanics told to perform a carbon test? I think there is a serious flaw in the communication system. The mechanics did what they were told by ATK and fixed the problem. I am unsatisfied with ATK's claim procedure so far.
As it is, I find myself in a bad situation of being stuck with a large bill, which again, is $237 more than the engine cost. I am assuming you have all the copies of receipts I sent you.
Buckhead Jeep's Phone # is: 404-261-1651, Manager Larry. Thank you in advance for your help with this matter.
Just so you know, I am an E4 in the US Army with a wife, and am experiencing financial difficulties because of the problems with the engine, to include the rental car for my wife and all the stress involved. I guess you know a low ranking E4 like myself doesn't make that much money, and my wife just can't understand how I could buy an engine for $1600 and have to pay more than the cost of the engine itself just to get it to work, to include double the mechanic fees, etc. Needless to say, I don't think I would want to buy anything from Quadratec or ATK again after this.
Anyway, thank you in advance for your help with this matter.