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Why I quit my job at the Acura dealership

6229 Views 17 Replies 11 Participants Last post by  toxiclows
This morning my older brother called me up and asked what I thought about letting the local Honda dealership do the timing belt on his wife's Accord v6 for $695 plus tax. I didn't answer him just yet and instead asked him why they didn't advise on the waterpump at the same time too. He said they never talked about the waterpump at all. That's when I explained to him that it's because they took a peep down there and the waterpump was new cuz I replaced it along with the t-belt when I did his head gaskets a year ago! He apparently forgot.

What pisses me off is that the dealership knows it's a standard that t-belts be replaced with waterpumps. It's silly not to replace a 40 dollar item when 4+hrs labor is required to do the waterpump. They looked down there and saw a waterpump that was a much different and brighter color than the rest of the engine signifying it was new. Yet, they were ready to take $695 from an unknowing at their mercy consumer. T-belts with 100k mi and 10k mi are very much distinguishable!

Then top it off, he'd already given them the go-ahead to do the two outer cv boots for the low low price of $445.00 plus tax. I nearly flipped and called him an idiot at this point but instead opted to calmly inform him I could've saved him $400.00 if he'd just called me before authorizing Honda. Thing too is I've told all my family never to take their cars to any shop unless it's something I can't do. When they get ripped-off I feel like I got ripped off too. Oh well, guess he's got money to burn.

Anyway, back at the Acura dealership it was my job to find every little thing wrong with cars that came in. Managers would often come inspect a car after techs get done with the initial inspection so there was no way around it. I often found myself fixing things that I knew for damn sure had at least a year's use on them. One time a perfect running car came in for an oil change and I ended up doing $1500 worth of work on it. Things built up to the point I ate lunch, drove home, and laid in my bed thinking about it. So I quit.

THANKS for letting me vent.

Any shops you guys wanna expose? LOL
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It sucks you dont have a job at the moment but then I dont think I could do it either. Thats the exact reason I dont take my car anywhere for service, at all. I need my seatbelts fixed in my crx but I'm afraid they will pull somthing like that on me when I take it in.
its unfortunate that guys like us hue..dont do well in the cut throat world of business. sad...but true.

but I admire that..not a big surprise to me though..I have known for a long time you were like that. But its the same reason I cant sell cars..and couldn't work for the honda dealership in my home town either. making money to me isn't as important as other my family...keeping my customers happy...ect ect.

anyway..good deal boss!
black_krix_si said:
It sucks you dont have a job at the moment but then I dont think I could do it either.
Oh, I've got a job. In fact it pays more and is a tenth the stress. I hated being all greasy and dirty at the end of the day, coming home, blowing my nose and getting nothing but black soot. I hated doing an hours work and having to charge customers 3 hours. Conversely, I also hated doing 3 hours work and only getting to charge 1.
well thats cool. more money less stress, wish i could swing that one.
Good for you Heu. That's just not right. And at least you have something to fall back on. It's crap like that that made me decide to never take my car anywhere again, other than to change tires (and body work if I ever need it.)

The last time I took a car somewhere was with our Nissan Pathfinder almost 2 years ago. All I wanted was for them to read the trouble code in the computer and replace a sensor. I dropped it off in the morning, first thing. They said it should be a couple hours. I didn't get a call back by 4:00, so I called them. They hadn't even looked at it yet. I didn't get it back until 6:00. Then they said they didn't find anything wrong (even though the check engine light has been going on and off intermittently) and said they would charge me $140 for diagnostics. I drove in there and talked to the manager and told him the deal. They ended up letting me go without paying anything. And I will NEVER take my car in again. EVER!!! Best decision I've ever made. I save a lot of money doing my own work, and I get to spend that savings on nice tools. :twisted:
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Oh, Heu, I wish you lived in Tucson! I'd have you look over my car. Seems like with me, either the dealer tries to replace something I don't need (like when they replaced my alternator when the problem was the main relay, and also told me I needed new struts when mine were 6 months old) or they are too deaf or blind to detect a problem that I tell them about (other Honda dealer when I needed a new axle; click-click-click when I turned the wheel, but they "didn't hear nuthin").

I just want to take my car someplace where they can tell me what can be fixed that is most important, or will give me the biggest benefit. I have 2 annoyances right now; the car creaks when going over speed bumps, and the engine idles pretty loudly when I go to the drive-thru, but I'm afraid to bring those things up with the dealer because who knows what they'll say I need!
Mark Williamson said:
Yes, I am painfully aware that I pay way too much to have my CRX worked on at the local stealership, but what am I to do?
Stop being such a wuss, and get your hands dirty!!!!

Go buy a haynes and a chiltons manual, invest some cash in a decent set of tools... you dont need alot of tools either!

and do your own work!!!

If it was made by a man, and man can take it apart and fix it!


Laure, I've found creeks in the suspension travel to be from failed oil seals in the struts (less common) to broken coil springs (least common) to badly rotted/missing sway bar bushings (more common). The loud idle can be anything from loose heat shields to pinhole leaks along the entire length of the exhaust to excessive internal engine wear. If it's the last mention it could still mean anything like a rod knock, piston slap, or you could just simply need a valve adjustment. What does this "loud"ness sound like? thump thump thump, ping ping ping, tap tap tap, or putt putt putt?

Mark, you'd be surprised how much you can actually do or how good you can actually be at something. Years ago when I got out of tech school I didn't know jack. It wasn't until I started fiddling with things that I actually knew anything about cars. And really, I still don't know jack. It's the guys who do it for a living day in and day out for years and years that are the real pros. You know, like Composimo.

Sneak that's my slogan too "made by a man, meant to be beaten by one"
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Dang heu,
We must of had the same type of job at the dealer.
I'm responsible at my job for all of the trade ins on new car buys.
We get all makes and models coming in.
I'm kinda known at work as the jack of all makes(trades).
Oh and yes I feel your pain when I see other mechs knowingly jacking the bill up or stupidly "missing" repairs.
I actually feel BAD if I miss stuff on my safety inspection!
What REALLY burns my biscuits is when other "line techs" cherry pick my work and fix the easy stuff(pays well takes little time),and casually misses the other hard(doesnt pay as well,takes more time)stuff. :evil:
I havent quit here because I know that people see me and what I do as valuable.They know who is through and who is not.
I do like the fact that the dealership has changed owners and all the "bad seeds" are being weeded out.(yeah!)
Ever thought of moving to detroit?I know that I could always use a good fellow rexer helping me here.
They say that the largest cause of stress on the job is the internal conflict that happens when you are asked to do something that goes against your beliefs and values. I'm glad you took a stand. I'm sure you'll find something that is a little more reputable.
Many honest mechanics make a hard living. Of course there are those that have the capacity to take a transmission apart and throw all three hundred pieces into a pile then put it back together in 45 minutes.

ollie, I know what you mean about the cherry picking. What's even worse though is when items on a to do list are "accidentally" forgotten on a scheduled maintenence service. A few techs I knew (and who knows how many I didn't know) regularly skipped the valve adjustment on a 60k service. Or if on the pre-test drive they didn't notice a real bad shimmy from the tires, they wouldn't even balance them. That 60k for example say on an Integra pays 4.8 hours labor time. multiplied by $94/hr = $451 plus another $125 or so for the air filter, oil, oil filter, transmission fluid, spark plugs, cap and rotor = $576 + tax. Everything else on the check list is basically "visual inspection"

So for about $600.00 what they actually got done to their car was an engine and transmission oil change, caliper sliders lubed, tire rotation, air filter, spark plugs, cap rotor, and a 30 second battery load test. Shoot, I can't discredit the airing up of tires and resetting the maintenence light. That surely offsets $600.00

and the kicker... yes of course there's a kicker... (please remain in position, there is a line behind me sir)...

The technician took a little over an hour to sprint through it all. Remember it pays 4.8 hours.
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thats insane, and the worst part, you HAVE to take most cars back for all of that, or they dealerships are voiding warranties
rex2nr said:
thats insane, and the worst part, you HAVE to take most cars back for all of that, or they dealerships are voiding warranties
Which is a good argument for driving a CRX. Pretty sure the warranty is up on that. 8)
not quite, we still are covered on seatbelts :p
flat rate pay can be great if it is worked right....
you are tempted to work fast to make more money.... then again you have to work carefully as to avoid breaking things and screwing up which could result in a comeback and then you are doing it over for free...

there is however a happy medium with all of this that is the best of both worlds...

my old boss used to work at an amc dealership back inthe day....

none of the mechanics there cared 2 craps about the AMC Renault Alliance..

he did though..... he drove them.... he modded them..... he was to them what we are to the CRX.... he had a stock dl 4 door with a GTA engine in it and gta wheels..... total sleeper.... not sure of the actual specs on this but it ran good.... and prob was the equivalent of dropping a stock b18a into an hf..... .

well back to the story..

he got to work on all of the renaults.. . .
well after swapping the whole drivetrain around in his and constantly messing with them.... he got really really good at working on them...
he could do 4 and 5 hour jobs correctly on them in about 1.5 hours...
this worked out well for him.... and his comeback ratio was low as that of a person that took the whole time to do it....

then there are other horror stories that i have heard... .
same guy spoke of other fellow techs who would do head gasket jobs..... remove all the head bolts.... lift up the head slide old gasket out slide new one in.... crank it down with the impact gun ( in the proper torque sequence of course) and button it up.... talk about scarry..... wonder how many of them came back with antifreeze pouring out the sides of the engine. . .

any way.. . . .I am glad you quit......

no one needs that sort of stress level when it can be avoided....

i worked in a simalier situation and got fired because one day i took a stand and refused to screw over the customers....

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I do fleet maintenace for a private Security Company..
A while back I worked on a Crown-Victoria that had been set
into "Passive Anti-Theft Mode" because the [morons] who drive
it had tried to start it with the wrong key..

Having never dealt with this problem,
I assumed it was the fuel pump
(vehicle had over 12o,ooo miles)
which I replaced along with the fuel filter
all to no avail.. :roll:

After all that,I scanned the vehicle which produced the "PATS" code,
So with no other alternative,I had it towed to the dealer..

The mechanic that worked on it came up with a nice long list
of recommended repairs which included
replacement of the fuel filter which was
described as "filthy" and that
"immediant attention was required"..

Also listed was brakes,transmission flush,cooling system flush,
wiper blade,air filter.. etc-etc

Needless to say I was livid..I understand the practice of "selling service,"
But realize,this vehicle was towed in because it did not run,

So not only was the fuel filter not "filthy",
It had never even had fuel run through it..

[edited by crxfisher for language]
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side note..... . . i guess you think everything is fast when you are young. . . . .here is the specs on that Renalut GTA I was talking about


* 0-60: 9.6 sec.
* 1/4 mile: 17.3 sec.
* Skidpad:
o Car & Driver .85g
o Motor Trend .87g
o Factory .89g
o some claim by shaving tires & altering camber, .91g
* Top Speed: 101 MPH

god and tha tis the performance model...... . . . .we are lucky to have our crx's////

not sure on the weight.... but i think i dx with a good driver could kill that thing... . .
si owners..... . . . . you pw0n3d them....... . . lets not even get into the " swaps" that we do.....

god we rock.....

CRX Power.. .. !!!!!

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