It has become a recurring debate as to what kind of service center to be preferred for car servicing, an around-the-corner garage or an authorized service center. While both have their pros and cons, below are some of the reasons you should leave dealership stations right now… and never go back again. From jacking up the bills to the unsatisfactory customer feedback to an increasing propensity to delivering shoddy work, there are a lot of major issues with your service centers for which they should be abandoned. Read on to know more…
1. There is no transparency! Hidden costs, irrelevant service additions, unnecessary taxes.
The authorized service stations often work in grey and opt for unethical means to deceit services, including component replacement without customer’s consent, forgery in the diagnostics sheet to increase the services needed and much more. Several harassment complaints have been filed against these big centers for mishandling the cars and manipulating customers. And this is not limited to just Maruti & TATA but foreign companies such as Mercedes and BMW too!
Our experts cross-examined various customer complaints and found some cheap tricks by authorized service centers to rob you and the results are appalling.
Look for yourself…
Here unnecessary services have been added to the job card to hike up the bill which later got scrapped off upon careful inspection and complaint by the customer.
One more example of the highly irrelevant additions done by one of the Maruti Suzuki dealership.
Things to note here are-
- Synthetic oil change has been used instead of mineral oil (suggested by their own manuals), all at the cost of an ‘unsuspecting’ customer.
- Item number 9 in the parts section, Grease, caliper Assy is purely unnecessary and is required only when the brakes are being replaced.
- Items 2,3&4 under Labour section are useless additions too!
2. They burn a huge hole in your pocket.
The authorized service centers charge you a generous amount for servicing your car and majority of times, it’s a completely unnecessary addition. The overhead at dealerships, the nice facilities, trained technicians, additional personnel and so on, translates into a higher labor rate per hour, resulting into higher bills. A survey conducted in 2015 showed that about 80% of the people who got their cars serviced through authorized service centers believed they had been overcharged by 25% or more…
The copies of the receipt and labor rates attached here are both missing the TIN and Invoice number. Also, the labor itself is costing more than the engine oil!
3. It is quite a test of your patience.
With so many cars lined up for servicing, it might take longer than the estimated time for you to get your car back. Some customers have complained of time delays as high as 2.5-3 months for a one-month service estimate according to a report by Consumer Forum. Unless you have a spare vehicle to use in the meantime, you will have a hard time commuting…
4. No customization option for your car.
Authorized service centers have always stayed away from modifying car parts as per the owner’s performance requirements. Though some dealers have started employing this in their available services, serious customers still prefer the corner garages over it simply because they have a more experienced staff for aftermarket parts and modifications. So if you are looking for a better cost-effective customization of your car, choose individual shops over dealerships.
5. You’re often just a number on the printed sheets to ASCs.
At large service stations, your car is just one amongst the hundreds that come for servicing. No personal relationship is established and you have no clue at all as to which mechanic is working on your car. Recommendations for the future are made by service advisors whose job is to get you to pay more, rather than suggesting actual service needs required in future. Where a one-to-one relationship between the car owner and mechanic can help build confidence in both the service to be done and the vehicle itself, it is hardly realizable in ASCs.
6. Corporate relationships weigh more than customer satisfaction for ASCs.
Your car is one of the biggest investments you make and naturally, expect it to be serviced at a place where it is given more preference. All the dealership owners have to pay the vehicle manufacturers to work under their banner. Consequently, they become more answerable to them than their customers. In such a case, it becomes hard to trust these service stations for your car when they value their corporate ties more than your satisfaction.
An annual survey of Consumer Reports subscribers found that independents outscored dealership service once again for overall satisfaction, price, quality, courteousness of the staff, and work being completed when promised.
When the ASCs are looting you for all the wrong reasons, it’s time to shift to other options. With the scientific age taking over the conventional methods and everything going online now, Car servicing portals such as GoMechanic will prove to be very resourceful which gets your car serviced for you with no efforts at all. Our personal car care experts ensure that the customer always gets the best for his/her car at a fair and transparent price. Now you can just sit back and relax with your family at weekends instead of making trips to the garage.