Took my new Outback to dealer to get serviced...very bad experience - Subaru Outback - Subaru Outback Forums
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post #1 of 59 (permalink) Old 12-08-2016, 12:47 AM Thread Starter
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Took my new Outback to dealer to get serviced...very bad experience

Hello everyone! I'm new here. I hope I will not bore anyone with this thread. I just wanted to vent and share with you all a very bad experience I had when I took my Outback to the dealer to get it serviced. The purpose of this post is also to warn everyone about the existence of unethical service departments.

I bought my 2016 Outback Premium a year ago and I'm overall very happy with my purchase. It is my very first brand new vehicle I bought. I've always thought wagons were cool and I like to go skiing in Colorado, that's why I bought an Outback. Of course, as a new Subaru owner I care a lot for my vehicle. I keep it in the garage when not in use, park it far away so no one would hit it, and service it in accordance with the maintenance schedule. What can I say, I love my Subaru.

Anyway, Subaru Added Security Maintenance Agreement came with my purchase, which means I get free scheduled maintenance for 24 months. So, I schedule an appointment and then drop off my Outback at the dealer for them to do a 12 months/12000 miles service. I don't drive my Outback much and I only had about 6000 miles on it when I dropped it off at the dealer. 12 months/12000 miles maintenance consists of oil change, oil filter change, in-cabin air filter change, and tire rotation, as well as inspection of components and such. When I dropped off my vehicle, I specifically asked them to change the in-cabin air filter. Five hours later I get a phone call, my Outback is ready for pick-up. Before I dropped off my Outback at the dealer I marked the old parts (oil filter and in-cabin air filter) with a Sharpie. I also numbered the tires with a Sharpie to note their position. I do this to protect myself from unethical business practices. When I pick up my Outback they give me an invoice, which states my vehicle's main relay (which was a service recall), motor oil, gasket, and oil filter had been replaced. There is no mention of the in-cabin air filter on the invoice. When asked, they assure me the in-cabin air filter had also been replaced. Great, I go and inspect my vehicle but discover my old oil filter and old in-cabin air filer to still be in my vehicle. I also discover my tires to be in the exact same position as before, which means they had not been rotated. They did not perform any service at all. I'm very upset of course. I talk to the service manager and within 20-30 minutes he had my vehicle fully serviced and ready to go.

The service manager gave me the following explanation: he said another customer had brought a Subaru Outback of the same year and color as mine, that needed the exact same service as mine. Hence, the service manager said, the service tech had mistakenly serviced that other customer's Outback twice and did not service mine by mistake.

Of course, I did not believe this story but I'm not a very trusting person. I wanted to ask others' opinion. Does anyone believe the service manager or do you think they intentionally failed to service my vehicle?

That experience was very upsetting to me and I wonder how many customers are unknowingly affected by such "mistakes".

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post #2 of 59 (permalink) Old 12-08-2016, 01:13 AM
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Not surprising! I only believe what I actually see with my own eyes when it comes to dealerships. Very sad

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post #3 of 59 (permalink) Old 12-08-2016, 07:46 AM
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Accidents happen.

I'm sure the dealer will make it good.

How come you just didn't change the cabin filter yourself? Takes the same amount of time to mark it with a Sharpie......and twice as long if you are going to check it to make sure it was actually changed.
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post #4 of 59 (permalink) Old 12-08-2016, 08:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OkiDiver07 View Post
Hello everyone!...
Odd...seems I've read this same story a couple months ago somewhere else.
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post #5 of 59 (permalink) Old 12-08-2016, 11:09 AM
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So which dealership is this anyway?
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post #6 of 59 (permalink) Old 12-08-2016, 12:05 PM
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Just did my 6000 mile service at 3200 miles as I don't drive as much. The dealer did all the work and they had no issues with the lesser miles on the odometer as time is a factor too in oil changes. I too have the free service for 24K miles as well.
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post #7 of 59 (permalink) Old 12-08-2016, 12:51 PM
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Originally Posted by z28dug View Post
Accidents happen.

I'm sure the dealer will make it good.

How come you just didn't change the cabin filter yourself? Takes the same amount of time to mark it with a Sharpie......and twice as long if you are going to check it to make sure it was actually changed.
OP said the service package was included in his purchase price. Like him, if i paid for it, i'm not doing the work, no matter how easy.

That dealership sounds shady. As if the tech couldn't determine the VIN's were different, keys and service orders. Oil pouring out would look brand new and i'm pretty sure the dealer puts a sticker in the car windshield for oil change reminder, no? Also, wouldn't he recall the parking spot?
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post #8 of 59 (permalink) Old 12-08-2016, 01:35 PM
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I sure hope hes changing the oil every 6000-7500 miles. 12,000 miles between documented oilchanges would end badly in another yr or so.

As for dealer service scams.. They Never Pan out ever!!'

Your better off just putting a service note in your calendar every 6 months and having an oil change and air filters about every two yrs with his use pattern.
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post #9 of 59 (permalink) Old 12-09-2016, 12:09 AM Thread Starter
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z28dug, if it was indeed an accident then I absolutely don't have a problem with it. Everyone makes mistakes. But the more people I tell and the more I think about it, I just don't believe it was a mistake. I think it was intentional. Considering my Outback is so new and had only 6000 miles on it when I brought it in for service, they probably thought I would never know the difference between the old parts and new parts, old oil and new oil. I didn't change the in-cabin filter myself because I didn't want to be weird asking them to just give me one. But from now on I just don't care any more - I'll do it myself. When this incident happened I told the service manager I didn't trust his place any more and that next time I wanted to stand there and watch them do the work. Surprisingly, he told me he would let me watch them do the work. I'm dreading taking my Subaru there again because I just hate dealing with unethical people who don't take pride in their work.

One thing I forgot to mention in my original post is that yesterday I received an e-mail reminder telling me I still have an open recall, although the service manager personally assured me they took care of that recall. Also, when I access MySubaru portal that recall shows to still be "Open", and my 12 months/12,000 miles service visit is not recorded under the Service History tab. Finally, I was surprised not to receive a survey from Subaru about my visit. I expected to receive a survey because they had sent me one after my 6 months/6,000 miles service visit. But for some reason there is no survey this time. I wonder why?

EGA, I hadn't posted this story anywhere else.

Mike Bennett, the dealership in question is in Texas. I don't know if I want to name the dealership by name, but don't worry it's far away from Sherman. You're not at risk my friend

cmonteir, one thing I forgot to do when I realized they hadn't serviced my vehicle at all is I didn't look to see if they had put a new sticker in the windshield for oil change reminder. If they had in fact put a new sticker in the windshield, it would be an indication that they intentionally scammed me.
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post #10 of 59 (permalink) Old 12-09-2016, 08:25 AM
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That's tough, mistakes do happen but that sounds like an unlikely story.

Bare with me a moment. Good job so far, keep it up. I would guess demanding, entitled, greedy, and other attitudes would lend itself to being more likely to receive this kind of treatment. Not saying it's right but it happens.

A friend works at a dealer and a customer demanded they fill up her gas tank because they used some of her gas. Given air filters and the UOA would show the oil good -probably tempting to do the same thing to a customer like that. There's also a local famous athlete who is absurdly demanding and wants treated like royalty.

I'm not saying that's you, but I would suggest trying to keep the best, most trusting and respectful attitude you can moving forward. Sounds like you've done a good job of that so far, keep it up. good chance that dealership is capable of good relationships and decisions - even if you need to protect yourself more than you'd like. I find vigilence a good thing in most areas, unfortunately.

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