I was quoted a repair price that was later changed. I was charged for work that wasn't done.
I was quoted $499 for parts and labor to replace shocks/struts at Quality Coaches. There was a witness to this call. During the repair I was called by the mechanic to tell me the mounting assembly needed replacing and the cost would be $850.00. I was told the parts needed to be ordered and the car kept overnight. I picked up the car the next day, paid, and when home saw mounting assembly repairs "refused by customer". I called the owner and was told he looked at the car and thought I did NOT need the mounting assembly. I then asked for the bill to be adjusted to the originally promised $500.00 and he said the original estimate was $850.00. I pointed out our conversation that he raised the initial estimate to cover additional repairs to the mounting assembly; he claimed he did not say this, even though he directly told me this, and kept the car overnight to receive the parts for these repairs. He told me I should have gotten the original estimate from his shop in writing. I told him this was my first visit to Quality Coaches and my friend told me this was a place of integrity, and that I have never had a verbal quote be later changed in such a manner. I also encountered dishonesty in his adjusted of the repair price for a reason that he later denied. I was charged $350.00 for work that was not done. I was told my memory must be at fault, and that the original estimate was for labor only. I told him no shop would only quote labor. If his office misquoted the estimate, that shouldn't be my cost. This is the worst experience with an auto repair I have ever had. I spoke with the owner for 30 minutes and he denied statements I quoted verbatim that he had made to me about why the initial estimate needed to be increased, and had no answer as to why he didn't call me when the repairs to the mounting assembly were not thought needed to be done. If he had called, I would have had an opportunity to decide whether to proceed or stop the process, and to keep him from inflating the original estimate. I don't believe the owner acted with integrity, and I feel I have been scammed.
I think I should be charged the original $499.00 plus alignment plus tax. The $350.00 he told me was necessary for the additional parts and labor for the mounting assembly was never done, and therefore should not have been charged. I didn't realize he hadn't done the work until after I paid him. He should have called me to notify me that they had changed their decision to replace the mounting assembly.
Business' Initial Response
In response to the specific complaint of Mr. ******, he was not overbilled, or billed for work that wasn't performed because we tried to make it clear to him that the labor was the same regardless of what parts were used. In the end, after we assessed what parts were really needed by doing a physical inspection with the car on the hoist, we decided to do just the shock/strut insert as was estimated by the people at Midas.
My phone person, *****, remembers specifically estimating the $499.95 for labor and $160.00 per strut as per the All Data estimating guide. I elected to reduce the price of the parts by 25% to $120.00 because of the friendship Mr. ****** has with ********, a 15 year customer. Our estimate of $499.95 in labor was charged to Mr. ****** at $525.00, a slight overage due to unforeseen rusty parts, but well within the 10% margin permitted. Our phone estimate was only intended as an estimate and not cast in stone. I had the final dialog with Mr. ****** when he approved the work which we did for $848.20 and he paid when he picked up his car.
I tried to find grounds to compromise with Mr. ****** when he revisited the shop to complain, but he was adamant in his stance. I hope you can encourage compromise!
Consumer's Final Response
(The consumer indicated he/she DID NOT accept the response from the business.)
This response fails to explain why my phone conversation with ****'s mechanic included a description of rusty mounting assembly pieces that would necessitate: 1)and revised estimate in the amount of 850.00 to include the parts and labor of the mounting assembly not included in the original estimate 2) why if this were not true was I told they would need to keep my car overnight until the mounting assembly parts were received, and 3) Why when **** looked at the mounting assembly and decided they would NOT need replacement, did he not call me to notify me of this as it was a change in our agreement. Finally, if the cost of this repair was increased over the orignial estimate, to 850.00 as quoted by his mechanic after describing how rusty the mounting assembly was, why did the price NOT change after **** decided to NOT replace the mounting assembly. The answer is the original estimate was not 850.00, as **** states, but was in fact 499.00, as I was quoted by *****. As I stated in my original complaint ***** quoted me one price, 499.00, and there was a witness that heard this conversation; no one would ever quote a price that just reflected labor, and there were no other prices for part quoted to me. In my opinion I believe there are inconsistencies, some of which may result from one party making the original quote (*****), another party assessing the need for more cost due to a need to replace the mounting assembly (the mechanic), and another party deciding the mounting assembly wasn't needed but not letting the customer know, and not returning the estimate to the original quote when the additional work was decided it didn't need to be done (****). I was a part of the conversation with all 3 parties, but I don't think they were talking to each other, and I think I was overcharged as a result of this. I was offered NO compromise by **** in any way. He would accept no responsibility on his part, and did not offer any reduced billing to reflect the situation.
Business' Final Response
(The consumer indicated he/she ACCEPTED the response from the business.)
While I don't agree with ****'s comments I do agree to the mediated settlement and very much appreciate BBB's assistance in this exchange. **** ******