Midas-Cincinnati, OH-Glenway Ave — Unfair Business Practices
I've taken my Honda Accord to Midas #504 (Cincinnati, OH-Glenway Ave) 4 times in the last 6 weeks for the exact same problem. The car would turn over but not start.
The first visit they replaced the fuel pump because I was told the fuel pump wasn't getting enough fuel. I've since spoken with a Honda dealership and was informed if a Honda is losing fuel pressure, the main relay (much cheaper to replace than the fuel pump) is most likely the problem. I'm not sure why the main relay wasn't the first part Midas would check. Possibly because replacing that wouldn't net enough profit.
Still on the first visit...Somewhere during the time Midas had my car and I drove it off the lot (about 4 hours later), the exhaust pipe was cracked. I had no problems with the exhaust pipe prior to that day. Steve (Manager) told me it was from the tow company. So, I had to pay to have that fixed as well as the catalytic converter.
One week later my car had the exact same problem, it would turn over but not start. I took it back to Midas, they replaced a part connected to the fuel pump, and told me my car should be fine.
Two weeks later, same problem, car would turn over but not start. I was told this time by Steve (Manager) the problem was the distributor. This part was replaced. I was "guaranteed" by Steve that my car was "100%" and I would have "no more problems."
Less than one week later, same problem, car would turn over but not start. By this time I've spent $2, 281. I took the car to Midas, demanded they fix the car, and refused to pay for anything else. Steve (Manager) was on vacation so this time I dealt with Isaac the self proclaimed "Honda Specialist." I asked if he was the "Honda Specialist, " why didn't he work on my car six weeks ago. He informed me Steve chooses who he lets work on cars and did not want to give my car to him (I'm figuring less commission for Steve). Isaac informed me he has "no idea" why Steve (Manager) replaced the distributor because he's 100% sure my car needed a main relay. So, the main relay was replaced one week ago and so far the car seems to be running okay.
After my terrible experience, I decided to contact the district manager (Gary Lindhurst). Gary was on vacation so his voicemail said contact Charlie Jones. I contacted Charlie the day I got my car back (Thursday-8/13/09) and explained my situation. He told me I had a valid concern, but I needed to drive the car over the weekend & call him back. I called Charlie on Monday morning, left a message and he never called me back.
I decided to contact Gary (District Manager) later that afternoon. He was very unpleasant and frankly very unprofessional. He felt the need to address me as "sweetie" which lends itself to the misogynistic tone of the whole experience. I explained the situation, told him I felt I had been taken advantage of after spending $2, 281, and having the exact same problems. He told me my parts were bad & needed to be replaced (After speaking with the same Honda dealership they informed me that fuel pumps rarely need to be replaced & they always check the main relay first). Gary told me he'd get the old parts back so he can "prove" to me they needed to be replaced.
Gary left a voicemail the next day stating they no longer had the parts. I called him back, left a message, but he never called back.
I called him the next day, he told me the same thing (that they didn't have the parts). I asked how he was able to prove I needed the parts. He said he couldn't, but the techs stated I needed them so that's all he can say. He offered to pay for the $60 tow charge but nothing else. I refused his offer, told him I was willing to pay for the main relay, but I wanted a refund for everything else ($2, 281) as those items did not fix the problem. He became very agitated & told me he'd check with his regional manager (John) and call back that evening.
Gary never called back that evening. I called him the next day. He informed me they were unwilling to refund the money.
I then contacted Scott Guttenberg (Director of Marketing), left him several messages, but haven't received a call.
I've been taken advantage of financially (I paid for services that didn't fix the problem) and emotionally (I'm positive this only happened because I am a woman & the district manager's misogynistic tone was evidence of that).
I feel this is a violation of the Consumer Protection Act in that they charged me for repairs for which there was no reasonable basis. Midas should be held accountable for their unethical business practices.