Jesus, what now Ford Dealers?

Power Ford North Scottsdale said I didn’t need an alignment.***

Discount Tire said I did.

Five Star Ford says that they need to grind the strut towers, at my expense, to properly align the car, but it’s “not” a design or manufacturing issue.



[***Ed. Note:  to be completely fair, PFNS was not completely off base in suggesting a balancing, based on my joe six pack description.  I had the same conversation with the Five Star guy, except it was more of a conversation and i volunteered more info (having learned the perils of incurious reps) and the rep sought out info so we were both on the same page. What I was perceiving was likely road surface conditions, but I did ask for a check of steering linkages and all that stuff to weed out mechanical sources.]

Dear Power Ford North Scottsdale: We’re done

Dear Power Ford North Scottsdale doorknobs

In December, 2007, I came to you with a little steering wiggle.

Me:  I have had cars for 30 years – I know I need an alignment
PFNS:  No, you just need a $70 wheel balancing.  Alignments are for pussies.
GF: You guys are dead now.
Me:  Well, you’re the experts.

May 2008 – time for an oil change, under the new 5000 mile interval specified by Ford.

PFNS: Let us give you a courtesy checkup
PFNS: Rear brakes are at 6 mm – condition yellow (fix soon, but not right now).  Tread depth yellow, tread wear (I don’t remember what they checked, or even if)
Me:  Well, you’re the experts.

January 5 2009- time for an oil change, under the new 5000 mile interval specified by Ford.

PFNS: You need the 30K service on this sheet
Me:  looks like an oil change and courtesy checkup.  Let’s call it that, since that is what it is, and save me $100.
PFNS 90 minutes later: 10 min. Oil change is done.  Rear brakes are still at 6 mm – condition yellow (fix soon, but not right now).  Tread depth yellow, tread wear yellow (i.e., something is wrong)
Me:  Well, you’re the experts.
PFNS service advisor who has the report because he is handing it to the cashier in my presence:  You’re good to go.  Thanks!
Me:  Well, you’re the experts.


Me:  Tread wear?  Yellow?  WTF?  90 minutes with my car and there is no explanation on the report, or from the service advisor?  WTF?

January 8, 2009

Me: Hi guys – Ford says “treadwear” is yellowy.  Please tell me why.
Discount Tire:  Dude, you needed an alignment about 10K miles ago.  Your tires are shit due to excessive toe-out.  A cursory inspection by a trained Ford service department could have picked this out long ago.
Me:  D-ooh
Mastercard:  Mmmm… impending interest charges.

So that’s the story, PFNS.  You told me I was wrong, when I was right.  You were indifferent this last time about my service, because I would not buy into your dealer-designated profit service, that differs from the Ford recommended service.  You were indifferent about my 20 mile drive to your store.  You were indifferent about the hour and a half for an oil change.  You were indifferent about the areas of concern noted on your own report, so indifferent, you could not be bothered to explain.  And, your superior knowledge has cost me a new set of tires.  Thanks.

Here is a hint – not all customers are idiots when it comes to car repair.  Here is another – when the tech sees iffy treadwear, look further. Treadwear problems do not cure themselves.  They are symptoms of mechanical issues to fix. If i knew I was going to be stuck there all morning, I would have let you do the alignment I asked for a year ago.  More money for you, my car is fixed, and I remain a customer.  Instead, I had to buy new tires, and I am giving my alignment business to someone who wants my business and understands the simple concept that while you guys might service 100 Mustangs that all look the same, this is the only one that matters to me, and it’s my money.  If you want my money, you need to pretend to understand that.


P.S.  All those expensive plate frames you sell are illegal, and will subject your customers to $135 tickets.  Darwin is laughing, but your dwindling customer base won’t be.

P.P.S.  Since I needed tires, and you sell tires, you missed that $, too.