Complaints & Reviews

faulty car repairs, refusal to respond to written request for refund

I wish I would have read these reviews about Cottman Transmission before I made the mistake of taking my...

scam, ripoff

Cottmliaran Transmission in Greensboro is a total scam. They are con artist who will over charge you for a...


I was sent to Cottman by my after market warranty company. I should have known they were trouble when Bill the guy at the front desk professed what a strong honest Christian he is. I took my car in to have the transmission rebuilt. They pulled the transmission apart and said they didn't find anything too out of the ordinary, but they couldn't begin rebuilding it until they heard back from the warranty company (which took 2 days). Then when they were almost finished rebuilding it they found a really big problem, one that required the part be sent to California for repair. They did not offer me any option on how to ship the part. I found out after waiting 10 days for it, that they could have overnighted it for around $100, but since most people don't want to pay that they just didn't offer it to me. Instead, I got to eat 3 weeks of car rental because of their oversight. I could have put a brand new transmission in. Then Bill let it slip that the transmission would last only 5 to 7 years, but that didn't matter because "you'll be buying a new car before then". Gee Bill, thanks for making on of my major decisions for me...which BTW wasn't what I planned. I hoped to keep the car another 10 years or 100, 000 miles. Stay away from them. I wish someone would have warned me before I went there.

they screwed up my truck

I live in richmond va and We took out Truck to cottman'sthey also go by Express care and Valvoline it was the biggest mistake of our lives.When we took it in the only thing we needed was a enginge.the engine light was on .We bought our own engine and had it delivered and they said when it got there it was bad so, they had found one and ordered it for us.It was alittle over 4, 000 that was with labor.When we picked it up they told us that we needed a new battery so we went to the dealer and got one Took it back and put it in and the truck started .The engine light was off and David had said the light is off and if it comes back on I will be concerned.My husband drove it for about 3 days then all of a sudden the truck wouldn't start.Had it towed back to there shop and they sad it might be the alternator or the starter that they both needed replacing it was keeping the battery from keeping a charge .We payed them to replace them and the power steering was leaking so they where expose to of fixed that .That bill was a little over 900 when he said it was going to be 4 or 5.I don't know how it went up to 900.The truck still didn't start and then they tell us that there are some wires( Under the hood)that are broken and that they need to put them together and that should fix the problem. They were wrong and then go onto to say we need a whole complete wiring harnest that goes to the engine .We had enough of there lies .We had it towed to another business for a second opinion. They called the next day and said the truck was ready .I was in shock and said it starts and they said yes.All it was that the groung cable was broken and had to be fixed and reconnected.Our truck is still running .My husband and I know now that we didn't need a alternator or a starter and It didn't need a wiring harnest.The truck leaks and they said they fixed it and the check engine light is still on.They are a joke and lie and tell people they need things and don't .I am telling everyone not to go there or you will be out alot of money.I wish someone had told us about them before we went there.


We took the car in to the shop to have the transmission fixed. Before hand we had done some research online...

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avoid this place

Warning!!! Avoid this place. They don't fix the problem and they won't stand behind their word. Cottman ruined my car. When they did my transmission, I was guaranteed it would last. It didn't and right when the warranty ended so did the transmission. I had to have my car worked on while I was there. Now that I am no longer in that hick town, it is as if I were never a costumer. It was $3600 down the tubes. Don't waste your money! The repair was shotty from the beginning and they know it. You should be ashamed Cottman!

  • Co
    cottman sux Apr 07, 2013

    same exact thing happened to me in Greensburg Pa Cottman. Owner Mike Gano is a fraud and a thief

    0 Votes
  • Al
    allen greenwood Sep 16, 2013

    installed wrong year ecm causing stiff, hard shifting, jerking on engine, and refuses to correct after 3 months agony and repeated request. one more request from pam & ed, owners in corpus Christi, texas.

    0 Votes

stole my money

I am having a major disaster with Cottman Transmission in Richmond Virginia on Midlothian Turnpike! I took it to them 3 times and it still not right and they lied to me. They had it 3 weeks this most recent visit and all they did was top it off with fluid but they told me they had to rebuild the transmission and they fixed the leaks. It's leaking worse now. I am getting an Attorney! $2, 000 and the work was never completed correctly. I am so angry and i feel like holding a sign out front of Cottman Transmission with a sign reading "do not take your car to this place, they will rip you off"! I am planning to contact my local news about it. I feel they stole $2, 000 from me!

bad place to fix your car

It was a waste of time and money.!!!I have a German car. They change wrong part. They use a word "warranty" as a sales pitch!!! Nothing they do... have a warranty.

Second opinion (with the German Car specialist) confirmed than... a different part need to be replaced. We made a few trips to the Cottman Total Auto Care. I had the same pitching noise before and AFTER auto repair!!! But they were very vocal to convince me (female) that I really need to change part that they did... Plus (!!!) the part that making noise. And I need to pay once more.

I do not think this place is good for non domestic cars.

someone's lying and wants a lot of money the wrong way

Ok, I take back every nice thing I said about Cottman's auto shop. Im grateful that they do inspections for free, the problem is that they lie about car inspections. I just got home from two very different mechanic shops. Cottman's said that the clutches were completely busted and we needed a new transmission rebuilt, which would cost us $2800.00 plus. Bessinger Motors said that they didnt find anything wrong with the transmission and if the transmission needed to be completely rebuilt, then the car wouldnt go any where but neutral. Both mechanic shops test drove it around the exact same time frame and I told Bessinger Motors that the problem really happens in the morning when I first drive it and he said he needed to duplicate it the next morning when he first drove it...

Someone's lying and wants a lot of money the wrong way...I think its Cottmas's. What a wake up call.

  • Fr
    Frank Toscano Mar 17, 2008
    This comment was posted by
    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    I went to Cottmann Transmission with a 1996 Ford f-250... It needed a complete rebuild... I offered to pay an ADITIONAL $500 for upgraded parts to have a stronger more durable Trans... The Transmission lasted about 15 months... with less than 18, 000 miles... DEAN the jerk that runs the place would not warranty it buy saying I only got his basic trans service with a 1 yr warranty... and wanted me to pay for the parts AGAIN and he would do the labor... The main problem with that is I already paid for the parts and he never even installed ANY upgraded parts... If he did I would have had FORDS NEW VERSION PUMP... which is what failed... and The old pump was still in my Trans when it was taken out by someone else!!!

    0 Votes

terrible service

I was having some transmission prolbems and I contacted Cottman (Phx Az) at which time they towed my car to their shop.I recieved a call from the shop manager a short time later stating that it was going to cost almost $400.00 to diagnosis the prolbem and then 'we could go from there", but somthing "is broken inside". I contacted another shop and took my car there to get it looked was a speed sensor.Cottman Transmission is a rip off and should be put out of business. It is sad to think that it is that easy to take advantage of someone...

took $2,937.. but never fixed the problem

Terry Comfy, Manager Julian Baston, Owner I do not recommend this shop. They are somewhat friendly but are...

incompetent repair

My Tahoe stopped moving on the freeway and we had it towed to Cottman Transmission. After testing, they said it had an internal transmission problem and after several days they said they had fixed it by replacing the torgue converter and giving the transmission a complete overhaul. This repair was stated to have a 6 month guarantee. My request for the old torgue converter parts was refused saying "they had been picked up by the "removal" people." I paid $2900 for this repair. After two days, the car did exactly the same thing on the highway and my sick wife barely got home with it. After 4 days, they announced the master brake cylinder was bad and that would cost another 460 to fix. When I argued that this should be covered under the original repair warranty, Kirsten Aldeen, the manager said that "Oh, no, that just covers the transmission. The master cylinder problem was what caused the transmission problem." Again no old parts were there for examination. My only recourse is suing them. Complete incompetence and probably organizing a local boycott.

  • Au
    Automan Feb 25, 2010

    Would it be asking too much for you to be a little more specific?? While your complaint may or may not be valid, Cottman has over 100 centers nationwide. Is there a sepcific city and state involved, or are you complaining just to complain?

    0 Votes

rip off company

I have heard a lot of good reviews about Cottman Transmission Center Many people say that it is the best they came across. I wouldn't say so. After hearing the good reviews I thought of trying them out but I had made a terrible mistake by doing that.

The experience I and my family had with Cottman has been worse than expected. We never thought that they would be one of those rip off companies but after this experience we realized how wrong we were. We had given our car in for a transmission service. The car was not ready on the day they had promised to give it back. Not only that they day we got the car back it was not cleaned after their service. They had left all the stains and grease as it was. There was grease on the door the dash board the windshield and also on the steering wheel. Moreover the car had 20 miles more than what it was when we dropped it off there for service. I would not recommend Cottman to anyone for anything.

  • Se
    Serge Privalov Nov 27, 2007
    This comment was posted by
    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    Want to be talked down to by a sales hack using your first name every five seconds trying to sell you a $2,000-plus new transmission whether you need it or not? No? Then go somewhere else. Don't go to Aberdeen Sunoco in Wayne either - they send people to these con men.

    0 Votes
  • Ch
    ChicagoBill Aug 31, 2009

    I'm not really sure what this person is complaining about...

    1) Car took longer to fix.
    Okay, did they contact you to let you know that the repairs would take longer than expected? Okay, sometimes that happens. Was there a reason (parts delay, unexpected issue once the transmission was pulled apart, etc) that was given?

    2) Car dirty.
    You're right it would be nicer to have given the car back clean but sometimes this doesn't even happen when I bring my car to the car dealer.

    3) 20 miles driven.
    This is a GOOD thing. It means that the shop actually test drove the car to be sure that it was fixed correctly.

    The poster doesn't even say which Cottman he brought his car to.

    There is something a little phoney about the posting.

    0 Votes
  • Ra
    Racer Dan Nov 18, 2009

    I agree with the comments made by another person. Test drive explains 20 miles, especially if they test drove it before and after the repairs were done.

    0 Votes
  • Sa
    SamJones1 Feb 08, 2015
    This comment was posted by
    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    Cottman Transmission is a total Scam! The 20 miles was to the junk yard where the bought the $200 transmission that they charged you $2300 for!!! This entire company should be out of business especially the stores in North Carolina owned by Fred Bowen!!

    0 Votes

deceptive advertising & pricing

Beware the "Free" Diagnostic Scam!

This shop doubles the list price of parts in order to make up for the time they spend inspecting your car for free.

I asked twice in advance for the cost of the repair and didn't get an answer until the job was complete. I couldn't dispute the charges until it was too late. I never gave approval to proceed with the repair since they wouldn't tell me the cost.

When I picked up the car, I brought a printout with pricing from two Acura dealerships. The list price for the part was $66.93. Cottman charged me $124.46. When I presented my information and expressed my concern, the counter person became rude, argumentative and extremely obnoxious. At one point waving my paperwork saying, "you can't come in here at the end of the day with this bull-#*% questioning our prices!" Even a discount coupon printed from their website was tossed to the side and not honored.

There was no manager at the shop during this exchange.

I will never do business with Cottman again. I strongly urge others to avoid this rip-off operation.

  • Ra
    Racer Dan Nov 18, 2009

    OK, lets see. Cottman buys a part from the same place you got the price, and you expect them to sell it to you at their cost, and warranty it too? And you pay by credit card?

    Many consumers do not understand that businesses must sell the things they offer to customers for a profit, to pay for overhead, taxes, rent, electricity, heat, etc.

    Many times a dealer does not offer the jobber a discount, or just a small discount. I know of shops that regularly mark up parts 4 times their cost. Some do 2 1/2 times, or 3 times.

    You might have paid by credit card, too. This costs them 2 to 6% of every dollar, too. All part of why parts are marked up. If the part fails due to no fault of theirs, they still have to warranty it and do it over, FREE. The car dealership does not pay labor to replace their own defective parts, so the shop has to mark up parts some to cover labor on any warranty that is not their fault as well.

    If you do not want to pay for someone to do a car repair and mark up parts they use to fix your car, then you need to do it yourself. Anyone who does it at cost will not be in business, especially with the government charging them for all kinds of licenses, fees, and charges to do business like workers comp insurance, liability insurance, etc.

    Sorry you are unhappy, but this is the cost of being a consumer. EVERY business marks up their products. Jewelry stores mark theirs up 3 times or more. Restaurants mark up drinks 5 times or more. Popcorn and drinks at the movie? Try 100 times or more!

    I also noticed you did not compliment them for their labor rate, which is probably $30 or more an hour LESS than the dealer if I guess right.

    No, I am not connected to this shop, either. Just a better informed consumer who understands ever busienss has to mark up what they sell.

    You might quit shopping at Walmart, too. They mark up everything they sell above what they pay for it, too. As a matter of fact, you better quit buying anything anywhere, so you wont get screwed anymore!

    0 Votes

terrible experience

The long and short of it is that I believe Cottman Transmission tried to rip me off by having me agree to a...

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