Dealership and garage scams are so commonplace these days. Increased pressure on the garages to be profitable, dealing with untrained manpower and mostly, to make up for the money lost in somebody else’s car service!
Of late there has been much importance to the scams and ill-treatment of cars at a garage or a dealership. So much that, customers are even reluctant to give their cars to certain dealerships, because of negative stories on Social Media. With much negativity surrounding the car services, let’s see the common dealership scams that happen everyday. Your car may be a victim of these during the course of it’s lifetime.
The list is so exhaustive, so we believe this blog post is just one in a series of many many more to come!
Wheel Balancing (Sorry for the imbalance!)
Are you not in good terms with your service advisor or did you put pressure on him for immediate delivery? Chances are that the wheel balancing was done on your car without even removing the wheels.
“We sometimes remove the wheel weights, and put new ones back on at the same place. We dont even remove the wheels from the car!” confesses one of the service technicians. He also complains that they either get instructed to do so by the service advisors, or because they are pressurized to do immediate delivery, indirectly forcing them to be a part of such scams.
Engine Oil change (Performance- appraisal review!)
Hate the performance appraisal review at office every 6 months? Guess what! Your car too has had it’s share at the dealership.
When a car comes in for a service with less kilometers on it’s odometer, lesser than the designated kilometers for a periodic service. The performance appraisal review of the engine oil is done by taking a drop of the oil between the index and thumb finger to assess the thickness.
If the thickness is less than that of the technicians standard, it doesn’t make the cut. Your car isn’t privileged for an oil change, though you may be charged for it! Also, petrol engine oils don’t change colour immediately after oil changes, unlike diesels. So garages use it for their benefit, scamming you!
Battery upgrades (Downsizing the expenses)
Give your car for a service. Get it back. Drive around for 3-4 months without any suspicion. Suddenly one day the battery dies, and you find that the battery is smaller than it’s designated bay. Duh!
Batteries are pretty pricey, and guess what? Often removed from your car to attend to minor jump starts and breakdowns nearby. And they don’t always make it back. Swap it with a lesser mAh battery from a smaller car, or an auto, you wont notice any change in performance immediately. Or that, it is so obvious! Till the day it runs out, and you are stranded.
Free Rides without the odometer:
Commonplace scams among new vehicles being used as test-drive vehicles without the speedometer/ odometer functioning. It used to involve disconnecting the speedometer from the gearbox or the wheel sensor. This way the vehicle could be driven for however far, without ever registering a kilometer on the odometer. Only compromise is that the speedometer cluster wouldn’t be working throughout.
The latest 2015 twist to the scam is, a 10 amp fuse in the system, if removed, would disengage the speedometer/ odometer cluster assembly from functioning. All that it takes is 20 seconds and one nose plier! This was made with an intention to make the speedometer/odometer cluster assembly safe by isolating from the main wiring harness. Guess, even with right intentions, wring minds find a way to take advantage on unsuspecting customers!
P.S. We don’t want to disclose any more on this. We are responsible and don’t want scammers to know how to access this built-in fuse, if they dont already know!
Why put up with all these negativity when you give your car for service? Carista is a mobile car garage, with highly trained technicians, servicing cars at your doorstep directly with genuine spare parts and specialized equipment for a full car service.
Get access to service quotes in 30 seconds through our android app, without having to take the car to a garage!
And best of all, you can rest assured that the scams are not pulled on you! No doughnuts on the way to the workshop, just honest car services!
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Phone: +91 9108876872