We ordered an engine in January. We called and emailed several times with questions before ordering. We had seen their listing on ebay and liked the price so thought this might be the place to buy an engine. We were ordering a marine engine so had specific questions about that. We were told that for $3108 we could get the engine shipped to Wisconsin. We also worked out in the deal that California Engine was responsible for the cost of return core shipment and that once received they would credit us $1000 for the core, Jim and Mark assured me that if our engine was running we would receive the full core deposit return of $1000 as soon as they received the core. So we placed the order with our Discover Card. 5 days later we get an email from California Engine, a contract. They never said anything about a contract before they got our money. We didn't want to sign but received an email stating we had to or no engine and now they already had our money.
DON'T SIGN ANY CONTRACT WITH THEM
On the last page of the contract states California Engine determines your cores condition and value. By returning your core to us, you agree to be bound by our determination which is final. This gives them the right to steal, they can say your core is defective or unusable even if it is perfectly fine. We did receive an engine but are having issues with it. We have shipped our perfectly good core back at California Engines cost BUT it has been 6 months and NO CORE REFUND. We called and emailed over 15 times, we documented every call and email. They WILL NOT pick up the phone. We used our cell phone once to see if they were screening calls and of course they were.
They picked up and when we asked when we were to receive our $1000 core refund they said their bookkeeper was out until Wednesday and to call back then. Of course when we called back no one answered. They responded to an email after I filed a dispute with Discover Card. The email from California Engine stated I was to close the dispute or no refund, I thought they weren't going to send a refund anyway so why would I lose my dispute rights by closing the dispute?
The email also threatened us with and here is the exact words from the email "Unless you immediately submit to us proof that you have closed the dispute with Discover, no refund check will be going out and we will most vigorously fight the dispute. We will provide them with the contract signed by you of which you are in breach and will further seek restitution for the freight charges that you are obligated to pay but failed to do as well as compensation for the extra time and work imposed upon us by your frivolous dispute". They never answered the phone or emails so what choice did I have but to open a dispute? At this point all I was trying to do was get the refund amount owed to us so I has something in writing.
After several email attempts to get them to tell me my refund amount they finally sent an email to me (I think the only reason they sent me a return email is because they thought for sure I would close the case but Discover Card told me not to because a lot of these companies know that if it is closed you have no more dispute rights and they just keep your money.) Anyway the email was a net refund of $772 amount minus $228 core shipping costs, not $1000 like they promised. They were trying to get return shipping costs out of my core deposit. They said I have a net refund of $772. Well they never sent that amount either.
So after filing the dispute Discover sided with us until a month after dispute is filed California Engine sends Discover Card the signed contract and to add insult to injury they are now saying the core was junk AFTER they emailed me and said I was owed $772 for the core, which meant my core was fine! THEY LIED to Discover Card and are now saying we are only owed $272 but we haven't gotten that amount either! So I sent Discover Card the emails with the amount stated and other emails from California Engine stating they paid for return shipping and now Discover Card reopened the case stating that the email proof supercedes the signed contract.
So Discover Card has sent this to pre- arbitration (a 3rd party) to make a final decision. All customer service reps we have talked to say the email they sent stating our net refund should be enough to win in small claims court. Our stomach has been in knots for months. It is June now and still NO refund and NO callback. To make matters even worse we are having issues with the engine they sent us.
If there was no star that is what I would rate this business. We have been trying to get our core deposit back from them for 6 months! The Better Business Bureau rates them an F, please call them and verify this information 530-274-5636. When I called they didn't even have to look them up they just said "I hope you didn't do business with them." They go by another name US Precision Machine, they probably changed their name after numerous complaints. I called the police department in the county where this business resides (Nevada county in California police dept phone number- 530-550-2323) and was told they receive about a call a week regarding complaints of this business and don't know how they stay in business.
They don't answer phone calls or emails unless you file a dispute with your credit card and the credit card takes back the money. According to the BBB they won't even answer the Better Business Bureau! I have filed complaints with the Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection, Discover Card and it looks like I will have to take them to small claims court. So as far as I see it, if they want to say your core is bad and tell 10 people that, they just pocketed 10,000 dollars. Pretty good scam. We are going on 6 months with this and still have yet to receive any core refund that is owed to us. I will post everywhere I can to let people know the kind of people and the type business this is. STAY AWAY!!!! THEY SCAM CUSTOMERS AND IT IS A FRAUD!