• Report: #375932
Complaint Review:

Valvoline Instant Oil Change

  • Submitted: Thu, September 25, 2008
  • Updated: Wed, July 08, 2009

  • Reported By:Northville Michigan
Valvoline Instant Oil Change
24400 Novi Rd. Novi, Michigan U.S.A.

Valvoline Instant Oil Change Oil Change Ripoff Novi Michigan

*Consumer Comment: Customer supplied Oil

*Consumer Suggestion: Quick Lube employee responds

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I went into a local Valvoline oil change station for an oil change. I had my own oil (synthetic) and car manufacturer's oil filter. I had my oil changed before at that station and others. I have only been charged $15.00 to cover labor. Upon completion, I was presented with a bill for $33.99. I was aghast. I had the bill rechecked on 2 different computers. As I watched, the entries for 'customer oil and filter' or regular were the same. The manager called someone, who stated that the computer is correct, even though it was clearly wrong. The bill lists $12 for labor and 16.99 for parts. I questioned them about the parts and Valvoline stated for use of equipment and shop supplies. I asked what equipment and shop supplies. I was contacted by a Valvoline representative who quoted me a different initial price ($36.00), less $6 for my oil and filter. The bill lists $33.99 less $5.00 for my parts. They are scamming people who don't know what is going on.

Northville, Michigan

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 09/25/2008 10:17 AM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/reports/valvoline-instant-oil-change/novi-michigan-48375/valvoline-instant-oil-change-oil-change-ripoff-novi-michigan-375932. 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 Consumer Comment

Customer supplied Oil

AUTHOR: Cro-tech Svc. - (U.S.A.)

I am sorry you felt that you were over charged. The service charge in our center for customer supplied oil and filter is $19.99. However each franchise set their own pricing based on market area and facility financial requirements.

The $12 for labor is itemized on all Valvoline Instant Oil Change receipts so the Point of Sale System does not calculate sales tax on that amount. In the state of Michigan you do not pay sales tax on labor. Parts would cover things like the cost of goods for the oil filter, windshield washer fluid, power steering fluid, and coolant.

I understand that the charge might seem like they are nickel and diming you but a majority of the customers in my location are paying for the convenience of the service (less than 10 minutes, not having to buy special tools, and being able to put a brand of oil they prefer over Valvoline.

Again my apologies that you had a bad experience at a Valvoline Instant Oil Change.
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#2 Consumer Suggestion

Quick Lube employee responds

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

I have worked for a large quick lube company (not Valvoline Instant Oil Change) for over three years and I think I can shed some light on your complaint and help you avoid situations like this in the future. I empathize with you but unfortunately this complaint falls in a grey area where both you and the company are partly responsible. Stick with me for a second and let me explain:

1. You correctly assumed that the store's prices and policies were the same during your recent visit as they always had been. Therefore, as far as I can tell, you failed to ask the price before you had your service done.
2. The employees assumed that since you were a repeat customer, you knew the price. Obviously this assumption was wrong because you either got a special friend's discount before or their pricing policy changed. Taking into account the high employee turnover and the incredible number of cars serviced in a month, it's not realistic to expect every employee at the store to remember the last price you paid.

As you can see, between you and the employee, there were mixed signals. You should have asked the price beforehand, and the employee should have give you a price quote. You should not have assumed this employee was aware of your previous arrangement with the store, obviously its not possible for everyone who works in the shop to remember 10,000+ customers. Also, any store reserves the legal right to change its pricing policies whenever they want.

Whoever was the service writer for your car should have realized that since you brought your own oil and filter, you would expect a different price than a normal oil change. I don't think he was trying to rip you off, he just didn't have good business sense. I can tell you that my manager would refund your money right away if he realized an employee made a mistake like this.

In the future, ALWAYS ask for a the price beforehand! Call ahead if necessary. About the bill that says $16.99 for parts more than likely their computer program will not let them modify this figure. Like their manager says, the charge for parts is for more than the oil and filter. Just ignore the parts and labor prices, they are figured beforehand to include markup which pays for things like rent, tools, utilities, insurance, salaries, etc. My guess is that since the manger can't show line-item charges for these things on his invoices, he decided to give you their standard receipt. The Valvoline representative who you spoke with probably did not include Shop Fee or Tax in the price.

Hope this clears things up. I don't think this store was being intentionally deceptive, but the manger should care more about your satisfaction. Email me if you have any questions.

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