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Pep Boys / beware of pep boys store# 33

1 United States Review updated:
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Back in January of 2008, Ricky and I had our 1987 Pontiac Fiero GT into the above PepBoys location for a tune up. They did the tune up, and inserted a new alternator and battery, which seemed to be sufficient, but after this, the car would not start intermittently. In May of 2008 (Three weeks ago) we had the car back into PepBoys for the same issue, in which the car would not start at all. This was occurring especially in damp, rainy and/or cold weather, so we wanted this taken care of. They inserted a new battery and alternator again, but this time unbeknownst to my spouse and myself, they failed to install the battery properly, and we wound up having to take the car back into the same location 4 additional times!! Each instance, they insisted nothing was wrong, because they were able to supposedly start the car. The problem was, that this issue was taking place first thing in the morning (At 5:30PM EST), as Ricky is trying to get into work, so we're getting frustrated over this. Upon the 4th time (June 12, 2008), Ricky is soo distraught, that I began to handle the matter, and when I spoke with the managers (Jose Gonzales and Mike Knowles) Mike did nothing but act condescending to me, telling me that they found nothing wrong with the car, telling me things like, 'the car is old', and that 'they don't make the car anymore', treating me like I'm a dumb female!! I refused to be treated like this, so they relented to having the car in their care for the next couple of days. On Saturday June 14th, we receive 2 phone calls from PepBoys, (7:46 and 8:16 AM EST) but they fail to leave a voice mail message!! When I contacted them again, I spoke with Jose, who informed me, that they had 'finally' found the issue, and that it was 'discovered' that the battery was not installed properly. Apparently, when they installed the battery (According to Jose) there was some type of felt/foreign object between the battery connector and the wiring. This resulted in the constant failure of the car to start first thing in the AM. Funny thing is, that when Ricky told them that he spoke with management on this, he told them that the Fiero Store stated this very thing could be the issue with the car, but they brushed him off. On top of all of this, when Ricky attempted to contact the store, he is told the manager is not available, and treated rudely. After getting 2 voice mail messages that were incoherent, my husband decided that I should be the one to talk with ANYONE from there. (Trust me, he's soooo upset, he might say something he doesn't want to.) I, being the diplomatic one (LOL) contact the store and insist on speaking with the department/store manager, and lo and behold, I get Mike, the very one who treated me like a dumb female!! I proceeded to let him know how disappointed we were with the quality of service we received, the lies, the double talk, and that my husband will be getting the car as soon as our complex finishes the paving job they are doing. I further tell him, that we have reported him to the PA attorney general, and that they will be hearing from our lawyer.

Then, I hung up on him!!

About 24 hours later, we get a phone call from the store manager, Jose/Joe or whatever he calls himself. He continues the bull****, but even has the nerve to add, that they had people working on the car for multiple days, up to 4 hours at a time, but they can't find anything wrong with it. He also acknowledges that we have threatened to sue them, and 'wants to make it right', to which I respond, 'Do your job!' I further tell him, that I found it very despicable to be treated like a dumb female, to which he apologized, and I named the culprit, Mike. I then mentioned how they damaged my husband's car, by breaking the key off in the trunk lock, to which he apologized, and replaced it, but I stated that it was still despicable. I also said that even if the electrical system is the issue, they should have people competent enough to handle electrical systems of cars like my husband's. I further said that if they truly want to make it right, to compensate us for the time we both lost from work (My husband 3 days, I one.), and also for the car rentals. He said that he couldn't promise anything, but if my husband came into the store, something could be worked out.

After nearly a week or more, I get a phone call from Dan McDonagle (?), who is the District Service Manager for this store. He proceeds to act very arrogant with me, he says that Jose and he had been in contact the entire time our car was there, (I found to be untrue, since if this was the case, I would have heard from him a lot sooner!!), says that they "offered us a second opinion opportunity", but we said no, to which I responded that was NOT true, but I stated for them to "Do their job!", and I also said to him, that if/when we choose to seek a second opinion, it won't be from anyone they recommend, because it is suspect. I further tell him and Jose of the disaster that took place when we used their complimentary towing, in which the tow truck operator nearly wrecked the car!! Finally, Dan further makes it sound like Ricky and I are lying about the situation, to which I responded that they were the ones not being truthful. I also stated to him and Jose, that the problem didn't start until AFTER the first battery and alternator were installed, and that we suspect inferior parts are being given to their customers.

Out of all this, the only person who has given us any real or honest information is a mechanic from another Pep Boys named Joshua, who mentioned something concerning a possible "parasitic short", which is slowly draining the battery.

These people are real idiots!!

As of this moment, we have filed a complaint with the PA Attorney General's Office, and would love to hear from an attorney.


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  • Re
      4th of Dec, 2009
    0 Votes

    First of all, you have a pontiac fiero that hasn't burned itself to the ground?! Bravo I guess.
    Second, the felt washers that were installed come as part of a Pep Boys battery installation can not decline them, and the service writers can not remove them from the work order either...and they CAN NOT BE USED on a general motors side post battery with factory terminals...ever...but you'll be charged for them regardless.
    As far as Pep Boys having compitent technicians, I can speak from personal experience that because of the constant pay cuts and lack of respect for good technicians...the really good ones go elsewhere for employment.
    So..Find a shop with people you can trust and stick with them forever, the corporate stores are not a place you will find the best qualified technicians.

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