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2003 gx470...never ever again smh

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Old 12-26-13, 02:53 PM   #1
kwash703
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Angry 2003 gx470...never ever again smh

I'm not the best or most knowledgable with cars, got taken advantage of today, but here is my story today! I'm a college student.

-Shell Gas Station (Auto Body Shop) Manassas, VA by I-66

-The car body is in top condition. Very minimal problems over the years. This Shell just finished doing my inspection last week. Passed me without even telling me I needed a new battery. It died while they were inspecting my car and they had to recharge it. I had an exam that day for school. My school is 30 min away from my house. I traveled on the highway and a parkway, before my car shutting down in traffic. I couldn't believe they forgot to tell me that and didn't try to make up for it. Just a my apology and they didn't even write it in my inspection notes. I had to get my car towed and a battery replaced by someone else. My life was in serious danger unknowingly. Overall towing,battery, attempted jump cost me close to 500 dollars.

WEEK LATER (TODAY)

I went back to this Shell because my steering was kind of tight (ONLY ISSUE)after they did my inspection. After getting my steering fluid replaced and automatic transmission fluid flushed/replaced, they tried to remove a nail from my tire/replace. They ended up breaking my wheel lock (tried to say because my car is 11 years old,the lock was rusty -_-). This has never happened before. Also stated who ever put them on last, put them on way too tight (they did my last tire job, go figure). They tried to get around buying me a new one saying all of what I just wrote. After they were done and me paying(253.00), they let my car down off of the platform.At this time I'm outside but not by my car. The guy gets in my car, then I hear a loud POP. I didn't pay it no mind, I thought it was someone else's car. They didn't say anything and they gave me my car. I drive off, and my right rear side feels jumpy/loose as hell. NEVER HAD THIS ISSUE BEFORE. I took it back for them to look at, come to find out that POP sound was my car. They blew out my right rear Air Suspension. This happened under their roof. Time goes by and they tell me I have to pay $609.00 to get it fixed!!! I went off! Then they offered if you get the part (428.00) we can do the labor for free. They kept trying to say it was because of rust and the car is old. Also they started trying to say it was other stuff (BASICALLY TRYING TO DRAIN MONEY OUT OF ME). So I left and called my father (Overseas Military/he went off on them also). My dad also told me if they offer labor for free, they know they messed up. Long story short they brought it down to 386.00 and will replace my wheel lock/lug nuts. I almost spent 1,000 dollars in one day/after christmas. I'm still very upset. Last time I will ever go there for anything.

WHAT WOULD SOME OF YOU EXPERTS DO IN A SITUATION LIKE THIS???? WHAT COULD I HAVE DONE BETTER OR DIFFERENTLY??? I'M CALLING THE BETTER BUSINESS BEARUA !!! I REALLY FEEL BETRAYED BY A PLACE I HAVE TAKEN MY LEXUS FOR YEARS. THIS IS THE SECOND TIME MY LIFE HAS BEEN PUT IN HARMS WAY BY THEM.

PS: My friend told me, most likely what happened was that they forgot to turn of the height control switch or something similar to that and that's what caused the blow out. He went to Lincoln Auto School (he was at work when we talked).
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Last edited by kwash703; 12-26-13 at 02:56 PM..
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Old 12-26-13, 04:27 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by kwash703 View Post
I'm not the best or most knowledgable with cars, got taken advantage of today, but here is my story today! I'm a college student.

-Shell Gas Station (Auto Body Shop) Manassas, VA by I-66

-The car body is in top condition. Very minimal problems over the years. This Shell just finished doing my inspection last week. Passed me without even telling me I needed a new battery. It died while they were inspecting my car and they had to recharge it. I had an exam that day for school. My school is 30 min away from my house. I traveled on the highway and a parkway, before my car shutting down in traffic. I couldn't believe they forgot to tell me that and didn't try to make up for it. Just a my apology and they didn't even write it in my inspection notes. I had to get my car towed and a battery replaced by someone else. My life was in serious danger unknowingly. Overall towing,battery, attempted jump cost me close to 500 dollars.

WEEK LATER (TODAY)

I went back to this Shell because my steering was kind of tight (ONLY ISSUE)after they did my inspection. After getting my steering fluid replaced and automatic transmission fluid flushed/replaced, they tried to remove a nail from my tire/replace. They ended up breaking my wheel lock (tried to say because my car is 11 years old,the lock was rusty -_-). This has never happened before. Also stated who ever put them on last, put them on way too tight (they did my last tire job, go figure). They tried to get around buying me a new one saying all of what I just wrote. After they were done and me paying(253.00), they let my car down off of the platform.At this time I'm outside but not by my car. The guy gets in my car, then I hear a loud POP. I didn't pay it no mind, I thought it was someone else's car. They didn't say anything and they gave me my car. I drive off, and my right rear side feels jumpy/loose as hell. NEVER HAD THIS ISSUE BEFORE. I took it back for them to look at, come to find out that POP sound was my car. They blew out my right rear Air Suspension. This happened under their roof. Time goes by and they tell me I have to pay $609.00 to get it fixed!!! I went off! Then they offered if you get the part (428.00) we can do the labor for free. They kept trying to say it was because of rust and the car is old. Also they started trying to say it was other stuff (BASICALLY TRYING TO DRAIN MONEY OUT OF ME). So I left and called my father (Overseas Military/he went off on them also). My dad also told me if they offer labor for free, they know they messed up. Long story short they brought it down to 386.00 and will replace my wheel lock/lug nuts. I almost spent 1,000 dollars in one day/after christmas. I'm still very upset. Last time I will ever go there for anything.

WHAT WOULD SOME OF YOU EXPERTS DO IN A SITUATION LIKE THIS???? WHAT COULD I HAVE DONE BETTER OR DIFFERENTLY??? I'M CALLING THE BETTER BUSINESS BEARUA !!! I REALLY FEEL BETRAYED BY A PLACE I HAVE TAKEN MY LEXUS FOR YEARS. THIS IS THE SECOND TIME MY LIFE HAS BEEN PUT IN HARMS WAY BY THEM.

PS: My friend told me, most likely what happened was that they forgot to turn of the height control switch or something similar to that and that's what caused the blow out. He went to Lincoln Auto School (he was at work when we talked).

My philosophy has always been gas stations pump gas .You did everything right they just took advantage of you for there incompetence. You need to go to a real repair garage. Otherwise just go to the dealer. You will pay more but you will get the job done right.
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Old 12-26-13, 04:31 PM   #3
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Definitely NOT judging here, but I have never in all my years of vehicle ownership thought of taking my car to a garage attached to a gas station, let alone a Lexus. That being said maybe get yourself some tools and start wrenching on your own vehicle, most forums are a wealth of knowledge. Some simple testing by "auto-zone" or a retail chain of likeness could have told you your battery was not holding a charge and most likely needed to be replaced. Bottom line, there are a lot of moving parts on this particular car and having a legit and knowledgable shop do the work on it if you are not comfortable doing it would be my best suggestion. I am not by any means suggesting using the stealership, however maybe a more reputable/knowledgable shop close to you.
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Old 12-26-13, 06:49 PM   #4
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You let Shell do a transmission flush on your GX!? I'd be worried about what type of fluid they used and how they did the flush.

Getting an inspection sticker from them is one thing but having them do actual work on your GX is another. I wouldn't let them touch my GX. If you don't have money to get work done at your Lexus dealer there are plenty of independent Toyota shops in the Northern VA (NOVA) area.

Hope you get it sorted out.
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Old 12-26-13, 07:33 PM   #5
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You let Shell do a transmission flush on your GX!? I'd be worried about what type of fluid they used and how they did the flush.

Getting an inspection sticker from them is one thing but having them do actual work on your GX is another. I wouldn't let them touch my GX. If you don't have money to get work done at your Lexus dealer there are plenty of independent Toyota shops in the Northern VA (NOVA) area.

Hope you get it sorted out.
Yea man...... I have my car now. It's running ok, but it's just doesn't feel the same (right rear side) as before I took it in today. I will not go to this shop again. Lesson learned. smh
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Old 12-26-13, 08:12 PM   #6
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Yea man...... I have my car now. It's running ok, but it's just doesn't feel the same (right rear side) as before I took it in today. I will not go to this shop again. Lesson learned. smh
Don't sweat it, like you said lesson learned...although an expensive one.

Have you decided what you're going to do w/ the rear right air bag? Are you going to let them fix it or are you taking it to another shop? It's definitely their fault the air bag blew but to be honest I wouldn't trust them messing around w/ the air suspension. They're likely to mess something else up and you not know it until later.

If I was back up in Northern VA I would help you fix it but I'm stuck down here in FL due to my job. My wife and kids flew into National today to visit my in-laws in Fairfax for a week. I wish I could've gone but year end is a busy time for me. Oh well one day I'll be back up there.....

Anyway sorry to get off topic. Keep us posted and let us know what happens.
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Old 12-26-13, 08:27 PM   #7
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Don't sweat it, like you said lesson learned...although an expensive one.

Have you decided what you're going to do w/ the rear right air bag? Are you going to let them fix it or are you taking it to another shop? It's definitely their fault the air bag blew but to be honest I wouldn't trust them messing around w/ the air suspension. They're likely to mess something else up and you not know it until later.

If I was back up in Northern VA I would help you fix it but I'm stuck down here in FL due to my job. My wife and kids flew into National today to visit my in-laws in Fairfax for a week. I wish I could've gone but year end is a busy time for me. Oh well one day I'll be back up there.....

Anyway sorry to get off topic. Keep us posted and let us know what happens.
It's fine lol. Yea I had them fix it. I needed to go to work so I just went along with it. I may get it looked at again an official auto body shop.
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Old 12-26-13, 08:34 PM   #8
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It's fine lol. Yea I had them fix it. I needed to go to work so I just went along with it. I may get it looked at again an official auto body shop.
I missed the part where you said they lowered the price and were going to fix it.

Glad to hear it's all fixed!
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Old 12-26-13, 08:51 PM   #9
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I missed the part where you said they lowered the price and were going to fix it.

Glad to hear it's all fixed!
I just couldn't believe they tried to get over on me like that. It's like they were just trying to run up a bill on me after a while. It wasn't even genuiene after that point. What would you have done in my situation? If you had delt with the shop?
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Old 12-27-13, 07:09 AM   #10
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I just couldn't believe they tried to get over on me like that. It's like they were just trying to run up a bill on me after a while. It wasn't even genuiene after that point. What would you have done in my situation? If you had delt with the shop?
Not much to do other than to:
  • suck it up and keep dealing with them until they make it right
  • take them to small claims
  • cut your loss and get it fixed by a competent shop

If you have some free time browse around on some 4Runner / Tundra sites and see what shops people are using in Northern VA. You need to find a honest / good working shop for future use.
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Old 12-28-13, 06:14 AM   #11
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I just couldn't believe they tried to get over on me like that. It's like they were just trying to run up a bill on me after a while. It wasn't even genuiene after that point. What would you have done in my situation? If you had delt with the shop?
Which is precisely why I would NEVER let a gas station employee (can't say mechanic, as they are NOT) work on my vehicle. Not even to check the oil or tire pressure. Waaaay too many stories like yours around. Been happening forever. Welcome to the real world us older folks have been dealing with for years.

I try to perform most of the simple tasks, like oil & filter changes myself, and if I must have someone work on my car, I take it to a local AAA Certified Garage. Our nearest Lexus dealer is over 250 miles away, and I don't trust the local Toyota dealer. This garage isn't cheap, but they are very trustworthy.

What would I have done in your situation? I can't say for sure, but since I doubt I would get into that type of conundrum in the first place, I think you made the best of a totally unacceptable situation. I don't blame you for being upset. I hate it when people won't accept responsibility for their mistakes, and do the right thing. Report them to the Better Business Bureau, and also write a letter to Shell corporate about your experience. Of course, it's now a case of he said/she said, but maybe some other potential victims can be warned.
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Old 01-06-14, 06:04 PM   #12
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No sweat, there are those types of shops everywhere... it is really hard to find a good one. I thought I was getting a good deal on brakes at local Midas in Seattle and for two days they were great - but then started squeaking! I brought it back for them to inspect it and they said I had to bring it back again for them to re do it - so I do, re-do it and they forget to bolt one of my tires fully on - the threads where tighten by hand only and I only noticed it because I could hear one of them rolling inside the wheel nut hole. I was so upset, but chose not to bring it back and spare a persons job - and now... the brakes squeak every time but I am never going back again!
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