Greenbrier Volkswagen - Chesapeake, VA / too expensive, too bad!
This is a review of Greenbrier Volkswagen's repair work done to my Jetta following a theft of my car in October of 2001. I do realize that it has been several years since the original work was done but only in the last year have these problems starting occurring.
First and foremost it took GB VW well over a month to complete the original repairs and several things went wrong immediately following...starting with my speedometer which was not put together properly and then my starter was not connected correctly. After that I found that they did not check the front end alignment either. It has now been over 5 yrs since and the first thing that went wrong was one year ago in Feb 2006 as I was driving to work and entering onto I64 I began to loose the ability to shift threw my gears. I had my car towed to my auto shop and they told me it had to go to a transmission shop. There they told me that my shift arm was completely stripped and needed to be replaced...roughly $290.00. When I picked my car up they asked if the transmission had ever been taken out of my car, which it had when it was worked on following my theft, the mechanic informed me that unless my transmission was shot (which it wasn't) there was no way that part could have just gone bad unless it was installed incorrectly. Obviously this was done at the time of work done in 2001 by GB VW. This was disputed saying there was no way to prove that it had been incorrectly installed at that time. So I had to let it go and swallow the cost of that repair. Now another part has gone bad my shift cable. This part being directly related to my shift arm. My mechanic explained to me that the only way that part could have gone bad is by the shift arm having gone bad. And now I am going to be out another $200.00 for that part and labor.
Also following the original repairs I discovered that the spare tire was never replaced and my insurance company paid for one, my CD changer that was stolen to be replaced was not installed correctly, I have oil stains on my back seat that was a result of my oil pan being put into my backseat, was not properly removed and is still there. Kindly Checkered Flag VW replaced the spare tire and installed my CD changer correctly for me.
Other things regarding GB VW's repair shop is that they stripped my oil pan, claiming that this is something that goes bad regularly. After speaking with 2 different VW dealerships in 2 different states I was told the same thing. This is not common unless the person doing the oil change either over tightens the screw or it is cross threaded. I decided to set up a meeting with GB VW's parts and repair manager to hopefully get this replaced at no cost since it was apparent to me that they were the ones who did the damage because they are the only ones who have done oil changes on my car because they are free. In that meeting not only did he fail to be interested in what I had to say he said that they would only charge me cost for the part and not charge me for the labor. The part would cost around $110.00. I was so upset that I agreed to get out of meeting and immediately went to my parts guys at Bap Geon in VA Beach. There they told me that actual cost was about $72.00. They also told me that this is not a part that commonly goes bad and because of that they do not keep them in stock and it would need to be ordered if I choose to buy the part from them. After much thinking about what I should I decided to buy the part from Bap and have someone else install it. The last thing I wanted was those so called mechanics at GB messing anything else up. The part plus the oil filter plus the oil ended up costing me $144.00. I will no longer be going to them for oil changes. I do not want to have to replace yet another part that should not have gone bad.
I will end with this, mostly because of all of the heartache and time without my car and money spent on these repairs, this is the saddest thing of all. Just over a year of owning my Jetta I went to have the air conditioning looked at. It wasn't working and I wasn't sure why. I had a diagnostic done and was told that some valve was bad and it was a manufacture defect. It wasn't replace because I was 2,000 miles outside of my warranty and just didn't have the money to repair it. This summer 5 years later my grandfather decided he was going to test the refrigerant level and see if maybe just maybe that was all I needed. Seeing as he couldn't find anything else wrong with it. Sure enough all I needed done was my refrigerant recharged. So after 5 years of driving in Virginia summers with no AC it turns out the part they said would cost me over $400.00 to replace worked after all. My grandfather recharged my AC and off I went to spend the remainder of my summer in air conditioning.
I have been trying for years to find out the owner or regional manager of this dealership so that I can try to deal with someone who will see me as a paying customer that just wants her car to run properly and not just another angry customer. I am completely fed up with Greenbrier Volkswagen, they have made me feel like my business doesn't matter to them because there is 10 other new customers walking in right behind me. No one has told me the names of the people who are in total control of this dealership and it makes me mad that they think so little of me as a consumer. This review is to inform people of what to expect when buying from them. This is not to say anything negative about my car itself. I love my Jetta and will own another VW. Over all I am completely satisfied with my car and it's performance. It's that dealership and how they have managed to mess it up that upsets me.
I also would like to thank my mechanics at All Tune and Lube on S. Lynnhaven Pkwy, the guys at Bap Geon on Lakin Road and the guys at Advanced Auto on S. Plaza Trail. All have been absolutely wonderful in helping me resolve all these repairs and have gone out of their way to make this as painless for me as possible.
Thank you to everyone who has taken the time to read this and I hope that it may help anyone else.
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