Report: #1081796

Complaint Review: Michel Tires Plus

  • Submitted: Thu, September 05, 2013
  • Updated: Thu, September 05, 2013
  • Reported By: Jess — louisville Kentucky
  • Michel Tires Plus
    16 Chenoweth Ln
    Louisville, Kentucky

Michel Tires Plus Price Gouging, highway robbery, and charges for services not quoted Louisville Kentucky

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I took my car to Michel Tires Plus in June 2011 to have the alternator replaced and have been unhappy with this decision ever since.  Fast forward to late August 2013, I brought my car in yet again for an alternator issue.  I had my car examined by a friend and an auto parts store who both concluded my alternator and battery were bad, which was explained to the Michel Tires service advisor upon dropping my car off.  I requested the alternator be replaced and to have the technicians look at a disconnected wire to tell me its purpose.  At no point did I ask or consent to have the wire reconnected due to reasons I will explain later.

When I purchased the alternator originally in 2011 I was informed it came with a two year warranty.  Due to the alternator failing just two months past the warranty the parts supplier agreed to replace the part for free, but Michel Tire’s said I was responsible for labor.  I was not happy with these charges because an alternator with average use should not fail in such a short time period.  I was even more upset by the responses and inconsistencies I was given from the service advisor.  When I first called I was told it was covered under a two year warranty, when I came into the store the service technician informed me that the warranty was only one year and then stated he did not even know why it was that long because they are typically only warrantied for 30 to 90 days.  This is actually false. 

I already feel robbed in the fact that I purchased this REFURBISHED alternator for over $200 that only came with a two year warranty when I now know that alternators for my vehicle found on other part suppliers run on the low end from $119 to a high end of no more than $195, and they ALL come with a lifetime warranty.  Michel Tires is selling refurbished parts with terrible warranties for much more than the most expensive units that can be purchased brand new and come with a lifetime warranty. 

The argument could be made they cannot offer a lifetime warranty on a refurbished part.  Well the low end unit that cost $119 is in fact a remanufactured unit and it still has a lifetime warranty.    Knowing all this I contested being charged for the labor fee but was basically told, sorry, you still have to pay for labor.  This amounts to price gouging and highway robbery.  In addition to alternator failure this caused my battery to drain, which led to additional cost of purchasing a new battery a few days prior to coming to Michel Tires. 

In past experiences at Michel Tires and with other mechanics, I will get a call when the technician feels the diagnosis of the problem was different than what was originally thought.  I am quoted a new price and asked if I want the technician to fix the problem.   In regards to the wire previously mentioned, this did not occur and the technician took it upon themselves to connect a wire I asked them to only look at and not reconnect or attempt to “fix”, nor did I get a call to get my consent to fix the issue. 

The reason why I had only asked them to try to determine what the wire was for was because the day prior the wire was reconnected and it blew a fuse in the engine compartment.  I paid $4 dollars to purchase a new fuse and had even purchased an extra one and had placed it in the car just in case I had future troubles. Because the technician took it upon themselves to “fix” this wire, it caused the fuse to blow again and I was charged $12 for a fuse.  If the technician would have listened to my initial request or checked with me prior to “fixing” they would have known all of this information saving me $12.

 In addition to the wire being reconnected and charged for a fuse without consent I was also charged for a battery terminal connector without consent.  The purpose of bringing my car in was to have the alternator rechecked and replaced.  Without fixing the alternator the technicians working on my car decided that the problem was the battery terminal connector being bad leading to yet another charge of $20 for part and labor without my consent.  I knew prior to bringing my car in that the terminal connector needed replacing and had already made arrangements to have it replaced.

Never once from the time I dropped my car off to the time I picked it up did anyone in the store call me and inform that the part was bad and needed to be replaced, leading to yet another cost I did not approve of.  The next afternoon, while driving my car the battery light comes on, lights flickering, and windows are rolling down slowly – same issues I had from the beginning.  At this point I am extremely unhappy because Michel Tires did not fix the alternator problem, only costing me more money with their Band-Aid fix and I am left with no car for two days. 

I bring my car in again and call after 4.5 hours to get a status on my car.  The service advisor asks the technician and I heard him so reply with an attitude, I am just now looking at it give me some time.  Give me some time?  I brought my car in at 7 am for the second time due to the fact that Michel Tires did not fix the initial problem, the least I could have is decent service. 

Due to the fact that Michel Tires chose to use a less than quality parts supplier and poor customer service I am in the red $50 for a new battery (pro-rated by AutoZone), $33 for a “fix” I did not ask to be fixed, and $108 for labor for a part that prematurely failed for a total of $191 in addition to the inconvenience of not having a car for 2 days.   

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