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Pep Boys / inexperienced techs and extortion

1 Copans RoadPompano Beach, FL, United States Review updated:
Contact information:

The following letter was sent to pepboys corporate without response:

February 8, 2009

3111 west allegheny avenue
Philadelphia, pennsylvania 19132

To whom it may concern:

On january 30, 2009, I brought my 2000 chevrolet blazer into your pompano beach location to have my vehicle inspected. I advised the shop manager that I did not have any heat in my vehicle.

After 2 hours of diagnosing, it was advised that my thermostat needed to be replaced. I was then quoted to replace that item with some additional services which I declined because I thought it was priced too high.

2 days later, I had replaced this item myself (due to the simplicity of this task) and then proceeded my trip to connecticut (of which I advised the shop manager – this was the reason I originally brought it in).

I was travelling through georgia when it began to get chilly and I turned on the heat – but alas, I did not feel any heat even having it turned up hot to the maximum. I turned it off and continued my trip so I can at least make it south carolina, but could no longer continue the trip due to diminishing weather temperatures.

I pulled off of i-95 to an establishment called carolina cars located in florence, sc and the mechanic, joey miles, diagnosed the problem – my heater core needed to be replaced.
If I had known this prior to travelling, I would have had it replaced at that time, but your mechanic, jerry peermal, diagnosed my problem as the thermostat.

I paid a total of $80.09 for a 2-hour diagnosis that wasn’t even close to what the actual problem was. if I had just replaced the thermostat (which I did) and just kept travelling, I could have destroyed my engine.

Adding to this issue, I brought my same vehicle in to have my oil changed on january 5, 2009 which was fine, but while that was occurring, I bought 2 wiper blades in your store and had asked nick to have the mechanic put them on for me while he was doing the oil change.

I got back to work and noticed that the wiper blades were not replaced – I then had to take time from work again and have them put them on. later on in that week, I noticed that there was a shop rag tucked under my hood very close to the motor (I was checking my windshield washer fluid at the time). could you imagine what would have happened if that rag flew into my motor?!

So let’s recap the events – the oil change involved me returning to your shop to have new wiper blades replaced and if I didn’t look under the hood of my truck, I would have never noticed the shop rag near the motor that your mechanic neglected to remove before he closed the hood.

Secondly, I paid for 2 hours of diagnosing a “no-heat” issue for my truck which was a thermostat replacement only to find out in south carolina that it was my heater core. if this had not been replaced, my vehicle motor would have eventually been destroyed based up the fact I was travelling 1, 400 miles.

This is unacceptable under any terms of your establishment! the incompetency of your mechanics could cost customers thousands of dollars in repairs due to incorrectly diagnosing critical issues such as mine.

Here is what I proposing…

The cost to replace the heater core was $568.29 (find copy of invoice attached). I am seeking restitution along with $500 for my grief, aggravation, your incompetency and frustration that I was counting on your company to provide me an accurate diagnosis which was never delivered – this is almost comparable to a doctor who diagnosed his patient incorrectly and the patient suffered for it – this is called a lawsuit.

This is not a direct threat in any way or fashion, but merely a way for me to inform you that you are held responsible for your employees actions. so the total settlement I am seeking is $1, 068.29.

If you choose to decline, I will seek legal council advise, advise the better business bureau, consumer affairs and possible media/newspaper publications. there will be no exchange of phone calls. all correspondence will be letter sent as legal documentation.

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  • Yo
      2nd of Mar, 2009
    +1 Votes


    I can understand you being upset but there are quite a few things I need to mention. First of all I strongly suggest you not seek damages. I wouldn't know a legal counsel who would take the case. It's quite possible your own letter screwed you over.

    Did you say something very similar to "When I turn on the heater in my car, it doesn't blow hot air" to the pepboys technician? If you didn't say that key phrase, it's very easy to confuse 'heating problems' (lack of hot air) with 'overheating problems' (need new thermostat). That's exactly the case here.

    Let's give you a hint as to how easy it is confused - YOU DID IT! Right in your very own letter to the people you want to sue, you say "paid a total of $80.09 for a 2-hour diagnosis that wasn’t even CLOSE to what the actual problem was. If I had just replaced the thermostat (which I did) and just kept travelling, I could have destroyed my engine." Sorry buddy but that's not true. Heating problems are a lack of hot air and do not do any damage to your engine. You could drive forever with a bad heater core and the worst that will happen is you freeze. OVERHEATING problems cause damage to your engine. Sorry for the confusion but Pepboys has no liability over possible damage to an engine since there never was overheating problems therefore no damage to the engine could occur.

    Also just so you know, shop rags don't get sucked into engines. Car engines have enclosed air intake systems that filter out particles less than a micron in size. Your shop rag would most likely blown onto the street.

  • Br
      2nd of Mar, 2009
    -1 Votes

    You see it the same way a bottom-feeding lawyer does - I already had this argument with him and he lost that conversation - thanks for your input, but in a nutshell - they screwed up, not me

  • Yo
      2nd of Mar, 2009
    0 Votes

    Imagine that, I see it the same way as a lawyer would. Just like Pepboys' legal staff would see it. Thus why they never responded and thus why I warned you. No one is arguing that they screwed up, its just that screwing up didn't cost anything besides $80.09. If you really want to sue for that, I'm sure you can find a lawyer who will take 100 dollars an hour for it.

    A lawyer does not lose a conversation when you NEED him or her. The lawyer simply loses you as a client and they gladly do so. Lawyers do not go to court to lose, so they pick their battles. Your battle was lost the moment you sent the letter admitting that no damage could occur.

  • Pa
      7th of Jun, 2011
    0 Votes

    okay here is a major complaint for you from Pepboys in Raleigh, NC> I am seeking an attorney for this issue, as i am just a single lady, and feel that this could have been alot worse if i would have gotten on the highway like I was going to, instead i turned around to head back to there shop, but i did not make it due to there negligence.

    I took my truck in for Brake repair Sat to Pepboys on Capitol, and it did not need BRAKES, needed axles seals, and when the repairs were done, and i picked up my truck 5 hrs later approx 1 pm. I left Pepboys and got dwn the road 2
    miles just to have the tire/wheel fall off and hit a parked car. No, I was not hurt, nor anyone else thank goodness, and that is what the police officer said also.

    This damaged my wheel well, my whole fender, and the parked car drivers door, not
    to say what it did to my axel. The police were called and Pepboys came and
    picked it up, took it back to there shop, took me home and told me it w/be ready in hr.

    Well i called them 2 hrs later just to be told another hr, finally 3 hrs later, at 6 pm, the manager picked me up, and than there were
    Rags hanging from the axle of my truck, and i demanded my money backfor the repairs that i ad already paid for approx 415.

    Now i still need to have the truck inspected for
    front end dmg, and the cost to repair the fender, and underneath and whatever else needs repaired.

    I feel Pepboys is going to fight me on the things that need to be done, as well as a rental car and the time i need to take off of work to have this done. This was a very scary situation for me when it happend and a restaurant employee from Subway came out and calmed me down as i was crying and hysterical looking at the sparks fly when the axle of my truck slid down the road. I have all the pictures, and the witness names. I feel Pepboys should be held responsible for this mishap as the lugnuts were not put on the wheel when it was put back on my truck. Also, My tyime, as i had 2 appts Saturday, one to look at a possible Home I was going to see about purchasing, and the other was a dinner engagement at 5:30 which i had to cancel both. Please, can you assist me. I work M-F, 7-5, My vehicle, 99 mazda pick up, my ph# 919-758-2809.

    I am just a single lady and can not afford to miss work, and take time off of work to get this matter cleared up and I really dont think Pep boys are going to re-imburse me for the repairs/inspection that my truck needs.

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