Recently our long time mechanic bought a brand new car for his wife. Since the new car comes with a free service package, he sent it in to the dealership for his first free service.
After two hours, he collected the car and drove home. As an experienced mechanic he found the drive back unsatisfying and so decided to drive to his workshop instead to have a look.
When checked, the lubricant was not changed and the oil filter, re-used.
Before the next free service for his new car was due, he decided to put a small coloured mark on the oil and air filter, and because he is a mechanic, he could raise the car and mark the bolt used to drain the engine oil out.
He went to the dealership for his second free service and after collecting his car he immediately (in the dealership car park) checked the air filter for his coloured mark and lifted his engine oil dipstick to check the oil colour.
The car HAD NOT been serviced at all. He confronted the service advisor and demanded to see the manager in charge.
His car was taken back to the workshop bay, raised on the hoist and when checked underneath together with the service advisor and manager, they saw the coloured mark still intact on the engine oil drain bolt.
This means his car was not serviced at all. So where did the NEW engine oil can, NEW air filter and NEW oil filter go?
Looks like the service crew had been pocketing these items, selling them outside and sharing the booty.
Now this is not an isolated incident and only a mechanic or a hands-on car owner will be able to detect this workshop conspiracy.
Well, lets look at the warranty servicing packages that car manufacturers insist car owners continue to use to keep their five-year warranty.
Does your car really get serviced properly when you sit in the comfortable waiting room with free WiFi, beverages and food?
1. Do you ever take the trouble to walk to the glass panel and watch what is going on with the expensive asset you will be paying for every month for the next five years at least?
2. Do you really think your car was properly serviced with the long line of non-stop customers coming in after you and before you?
3. Do you really think the oil filter was changed or was it just wiped clean to look new?
4. Do you ever check the engine oil after servicing using a dipstick to see if the oil is clean and smooth?
5. Do you ever check if the air-filter was changed or just cleaned with an air blower and reused?
Think about all this the next time you send your car for a service. Meanwhile, the new car dealership in question is being audited as we highlighted this issue to their headquarters.
They have expressed their unhappiness with this dealership as in time when their products start giving problems, it is their brand image that will be affected, not the dealership workshop profits.
This article is powered by DS&F, visit www.dsf.my for more automotive updates.