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View Poll Results: Are Service Centres fleecing, to make up for losses they incurred during this pandemic crisis?
Yes 150 77.32%
No 44 22.68%
Voters: 194. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 24th October 2020, 11:57   #16
ais
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Default Re: Are Service Centres fleecing, to make up for losses incurred during the pandemic?

Yes. Modern Auto, Panchkula, for my Baleno's annual service this month. As usual, I supervise the entire servicing process. I get the stones removed from tyre treads before getting wheel balancing done, amongst other things the service experts don't know or bother about. Despite my omnipresence, the service technician started putting the drained engine BACK into the engine! When I asked him what's going on, he said the oil looks clean since its been driven only about 2k kms in a year!

Let me not mention much about BMW, but at the time of preparing the job card, the staff added 10 petrol additives costing 1k each to the estimate. Car had driven only 1k kms since last service. He probably wanted me to be a sub dealer for BMW petrol additives! More later, after I sell my BMW.
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Old 24th October 2020, 12:27   #17
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Default Re: Are Service Centres fleecing, to make up for losses incurred during the pandemic?

Replied- Yes. I got this feeling when I had gone to get Jeep Compass for year 1 service in May 2020.

I was suggested to get anti-bacterial/ anti-fungal treatment for AC. And of course, deep sanitisation of Jeep interiors.

It seems that service centre was trying to make money by selling additional services while leveraging the mental stage COVID had put in. And the other reason could be to 'make up' for lost revenue.

This was Landmark Jeep- Okhla. This was the only one open in May 2020.
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Old 24th October 2020, 12:43   #18
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Default Re: Are Service Centres fleecing, to make up for losses incurred during the pandemic?

Voted NO!!

My Ertiga went in for 90K service last month, the total bill was 32K, as I asked the SA to change the clutch plates as I was feeling the clutch becoming heavy. Changed the battery too, as the acid was flowing out from the terminal. These were the 2 things I asked the advice to change apart from the regular service.

Since I service the car at the same service centre CARS INDIA, Redhills - They know me well and they know they cannot fleece me All because of the knowledge I garnered from this forum!

But, we have a low running i20 petrol at home which has done only 12K Kms in 3 years. The Hyundai service centre guys will try to convince for everything they can offer, we will deny everything politely with a smile and have so far done only the regular service.
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Old 24th October 2020, 13:10   #19
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Default Re: Are Service Centres fleecing, to make up for losses incurred during the pandemic?

Just about a week back, a third year/30,000 km routine service of a Grand i10AT came to INR 11,000 plus at a hyundai A.S.S. Labour charges mentioned in the bill were truly eye-watering. Periodic service bills of mass market cars from VW/Skoda felt lighter in comparison.

To add insult to injury, the car was returned with unresolved issues (The signal lights on the car blink only at times, while locking the car with the remote. Locking/unlocking functions work just fine and lights have no problem blinking while unlocking. They acknowledged the problem, but claimed inability to resolve it even after keeping the car for three days and wanted consultation with some regional technical head!) the workmanship too was mediocre at best!

The A.S.S. being 'Popular Hyundai',
Thiruvananthapuram.

Not voting, since I am not sure whether this is just regular fleecing or pandemic related fleecing.

Last edited by crdi : 24th October 2020 at 13:12.
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Old 24th October 2020, 13:25   #20
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Default Re: Are Service Centres fleecing, to make up for losses incurred during the pandemic?

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Last edited by GTO : 26th October 2020 at 07:02.
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Old 24th October 2020, 14:33   #21
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Default Re: Are Service Centres fleecing, to make up for losses incurred during the pandemic?

Recently I had sent my creta diesel for 10,000km /1 year regular service to Joshi Hyundai Mohali .The service advisor advised for synthetic oil , some internal cleaning and wheel balancing / alignment for around Rs 10000/- to which I refused as my car had run only 3000 kms since I had bought it in Oct 2019.

The total billed amount for the regular service came to Rs 2000/- and I am pretty sure that I saved an amount of Rs 8000/- atleast in servicing.Only Engine oil/oil filter were changed while the air filter was cleaned .

Overall ,it seems to be a good experience as of now.My only advise is that while getting the scheduled / regular service from authorised service station ,it is advisable to send the vehicle for service on weekends.The reason being that due to larger number of vehicles waiting for their service, the service advisors donot haggle the customers for extra work .
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Old 24th October 2020, 15:47   #22
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Default Re: Are Service Centres fleecing, to make up for losses incurred during the pandemic?

Voted yes. I learnt about my rear brake cylinders having gone kaput. Toyota quoted me a fat 5000 bucks for new ones, including labour. Also added extra sanitising charges which I humbly refused since I had got it done at 3M. Asked my FNG, quoted half and got it done on the spot. Its insane!

Last edited by coolmel : 24th October 2020 at 15:50.
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Old 24th October 2020, 16:12   #23
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Default Re: Are Service Centres fleecing, to make up for losses incurred during the pandemic?

I will have to say NO.
Sent in my Innova for its 185000 service and there were no additional charges other than the service cost. The reason could be that the last service was a big bill one including suspension work and a clutch change. There was an additional charge for fumigation though to be fair I was informed about this as soon as I booked the service.
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Old 24th October 2020, 16:31   #24
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Default Re: Are Service Centres fleecing, to make up for losses incurred during the pandemic?

Quote:
Originally Posted by aravind.anand View Post
Case 3: Ambal Auto Suzuki Service, Coimbatore
Although I cannot comment on other service centre's, I regularly service my car with Ambal and I am very much satisfied with their service. I even did replace my steering column under warranty in June .
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Old 24th October 2020, 16:45   #25
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Default Re: Are Service Centres fleecing, to make up for losses incurred during the pandemic?

I voted no, but that's only because my TASS has no parts in stock to fleece me with.. HAHA.

I have a broken air dam grill, and I was told about a month and a half ago, that any parts needed will need another 2 more months before we can even have it in stock..
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Old 24th October 2020, 17:00   #26
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Default Re: Are Service Centres fleecing, to make up for losses incurred during the pandemic?

Quote:
Originally Posted by aravind.anand View Post
Are service centers starting to extort more money out of vehicles coming in for regular servicing to make up for the loses they incurred during the COVID-19 pandemic situation?
I also had a service due two months back, i was thinking of going to ASC ( as my previous FNG experience was not so great). Even prior to the pandemic they were fleecing me, all services were coming to minimum 15k.

But better sense prevailed and went to not so near FNG and had a better experience. Even my 1st service was not so inexpensive.

I highly recommend trying out one of the FNG with good reviews in team bhp
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Old 24th October 2020, 17:10   #27
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Default Re: Are Service Centres fleecing, to make up for losses incurred during the pandemic?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Living2Drive View Post
I voted for NO as i usually stay right next to the vehicle and get it serviced, or i will convey that i will personally need to inspect the part before replacement. dealers usually have the tendency to replace brake pads even with 50% life left out, however i use it till the actual service limit which is usually 2mm. The same with alignment and balancing. while handing over for service i upfront convey i dont want wheel balancing and wheel alignment, will only do tyre rotation (5 wheel for Thar and 4 wheel for Figo). I'll write it down on the Ro copy when they take my signature while receiving the vehicle. Same with my Honda Activa, for every service dealer will force me for clutch cleaning, i'll simply refuse and write it down on the repair order.
For the belt and pulleys, water pump etc., should ideally survive till the specified odo, except stone peck other mode of failure is a manufacturing issue.
Coolant flush: once i was told that my Figo needs coolant replacement as it could potentially kill water pump. i wrote to customer care and got to know that there's a service procedure released(FOC repair for less than 50K run vehicles) to replace coolant with higher concentration as it would minimize water pump noise in idle. Dealer tried to make make me pay for it during delivery, i showed the email communication i had with Ford and the service advisor silently removed the coolant and its labor cost removed from the bill.

Its a tendency of pretty much all the dealers to find every possibly way to make us spend. if we know our vehicle well, then we're safe.
I am somehow unable to vote, but I would have definitely voted a 'Yes'. I completely agree with and follow most of Living2Drive's advise. I too feel that it is important to be present while your vehicle is being serviced. This prevents the service centre from fleecing you by charging you money for unnecessary repairs plus you can also make sure that they are really replacing your vehicle's old/worn parts with new parts and using the prescribed consumables and not something cheaper or inferior. I have seen service centres misusing vehicles of customers who are not present. They use these vehicles to go fetch parts from other service centres or a warehouse. I have also witnessed accidents with a customer's vehicle when the service advisor/mechanic driving the vehicle was not careful. Sitting in a vehicle with the aircon running full blast, making personal calls is also a common sight at service centres that can be mitigated if you are present while your vehicle is being serviced. I make sure that I am always there at the service centre when my car is being serviced. I also insist on getting the work done in front of me and fortunately since I am an old customer, the service centre obliges.
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Old 24th October 2020, 17:34   #28
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Default Re: Are Service Centres fleecing, to make up for losses incurred during the pandemic?

Voted no. I am relatively certain my Toyota ASC will not attempt to fleece me due to the strong oversight by TKM.

Even after having stood stationary on 1 spot for over 7 months the car is running like it always does. All that was needed was a battery revival and charge which was done at home. Fitted the battery and the engine fired up at the 1st turn of the key without hesitation. Next step was to take the car for a wash, disinfect the interiors, followed by a nitrogen top up in the tyres and spare wheel. It's BAU for the vehicle now.

But I confess I was lucky that there were no rodent attacks (was very concerned) courtesy a cat and and sometimes a shrew that tend to make my car's engine bay their territory. Messy yes, smelly definitely so, but a small price to pay to keep rats at bay.

So, now that the car has no issues the ASC has no reason to try and pull a fast one when it goes for a service possibly in Jan '21 due to the lack of use. However, that does not mean I (or any other customer for that matter) should be off guard. It is better to be aware of what your car needs otherwise they will be tempted (but not necessarily succumb to that temptation) to tack on some extras. Caveat emptor applies here as always.
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Old 24th October 2020, 19:12   #29
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Default Re: Are Service Centres fleecing, to make up for losses incurred during the pandemic?

Recently Hyderabad was hit by very bad flash floods, many houses and cars were affected. In our colony, Mercedes Benz's, BMW's, many new generation Dzires, Swifts, Jeep compass', i20s, Skodas, Cretas were affected. People whom I know in our colony (I'm little popular in my neighborhood as I walk my dog out in the nights and I am familiar with most of the faces, I also give them technical information regarding laptops, PCs, cars, bikes, other electronics whenever they needed any suggestions). So I got to know the details of their vehicles and how much their service centers quoted for repairs.

All of my cars are safe except for my Wagon-R which was affected, that too only carpet was soaked, our house is in a considerable amount height compared to the road level and parking is also elevated, but still water made its way to the carpet of Wagon R. I posted regarding the same here. (Maruti Genuine Parts (MGP) Catalog: Post your queries here (model list on Pg 1)). The good thing I did was, I removed the battery terminals (to prevent short circuits) and covered the exhaust (to prevent water flooding the engine via exhaust manifold)

Now coming to other cars in our colony, most of the cars are towed to service centers as they had insurance, here are the quotations the service centers gave to repair the flood affected vehicles

1. Mercedes E-Class E250 CDI 2018 - 4 lakhs (owner did not pay insurance, had to pay from his own pocket, the car has only 800 kms on ODO, he only used this car for functions and marriages)

2. BMW 520 D 2020 January - 6 lakhs (almost brand new car, was registered just before BS4 deadline, has only 300 kms on ODO)

3. Jeep Compass Limited plus petrol - 70 K (did not flood completely)

4. Jeep Compass Limited Diesel - 50 K (did not flood completely)

5. Maruti Swift Petrol AMT 2019 new generation - 80 K for repairs, but the showroom people are pushing it for total loss as the water crossed dashboard level.

6. Maruti Swift Petrol AMT 2018 new generation - 1 lakh for repairs, but the owner negotiated to 70 k (this person forgot to pay insurance and had to pay money from his pocket, this vehicle did only 2 K kms, used very rarely.

7. Maruti Swift DDIS MT 2019 new generation - M.A.S.S quoted 1 lakh for repairs

8. Skoda Laura TDI 2013 - Total loss

9. Tata Nano - Total loss

10. Dzire new generation diesel AMT 2018 model - 60 K for repair

11. i20 Magna CRDI - 60 K for repairs at FNG, Hyundai declared it total loss (ECU malfunction, circuit issues, complete roof liner, seats, carpet soiled.)

12. Honda Amaze 2013 - The owner drove it in the flood, now the gearbox is jammed. The car doesn't move at all.

13. Honda Amaze 2014 - Similar car as above and same color too (white), Honda quoted 40 K for repairs

14. Bolero pick up truck 2017 - engine block + head replacement suggested by MASS as water entered the engine via exhaust manifold.

15.Hyundai Creta 2016 SX+ diesel - 10 K for deleting airbag light code on MID and drying the carpet and disinfecting the car. (water just soaked the carpet similar to my Wagon-R)

16. Maruti Suzuki SX4 - 40 K

17. Renault Duster - 2 lakhs (Water entered engine)

18. Maruti Suzuki S- Cross - 80 K

19. New gen Honda Amaze - 1.2 lakhs

20. Mahindra Xylo - Sold in scrap for 50 K

21. Old generation Dzire VDI - was in pristine condition before flood affect, did about 28 k kms in last 7 years, Sold for 1.8 lakhs

22. Celerio - 70 K for repairs - car flooded till the headliner.

There are many more cars : Ford Ecosport AT, Toyota fortuner (which was towed to TASS on a flatbed), Ritz, Alto, Xylo, i10 grand, Nissan Sunny, Honda Jazz, Honda City (3), etc, all of them are gone, and god knows how much the service centers quoted to fix their cars.

I'm shell shocked on seeing the above quotations, except no. 15 Creta, all the other cars have exorbitant quotations for repairs. Flood affected vehicles will not just take time, but also lot of money to fix them. Most of them bought 2nd hand cars and rentals for time being as the service centers quoted anywhere between 1 and half to 2 months to completely fix these vehicles, the floods in Hyderabad affected almost all major low lying areas of Hyderabad and these are keeping the service centers very busy. Almost all major car service centers (Maruti, Hyundai) are full with flooded vehicles. Most of the cars are going for ECU / ECM replacements, Airbag sensor modules, EPS module replacements. The only thing I did not like about service centers handling flood vehicles is, that they are just drying out the carpets instead of replacing them. My Wagon-R carpet costs 1400 rs, I ordered a new one at MGP, Mold and fungus will grow if old one is still used and if it is a little wet / damp, the old one will still stink no matter how thoroughly they cleaned it or how many air fresheners they use. Chances are high for rust formation as well.

I saw a 'completely serviced Hyundai Creta and a Dzire after flood affect in our neighborhood, upon removing the plastic cladding in between door sill and carpet, there is still water in between original carpet and metal underbody.

The cars had their immobilizers activated, alarms and horns blaring all night during flood, most of the ECUs are short, transmissions jammed and many other issues. Service centers are also trying to take this situation to their advantage and they are planning to make up for their losses incurred during lockdown. I'm sure FNGs can restore these cars for half the price, but people with insurance are opting to go with the service center only despite one and half to two months wait.







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Next day after the water level receded. You can see the brownish line on the walls, the flood water reached till that surface.

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Last edited by WhiteSierra : 24th October 2020 at 19:36. Reason: spacing
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Old 24th October 2020, 19:42   #30
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Default Re: Are Service Centres fleecing, to make up for losses incurred during the pandemic?

Gave my Innova crysta for 30000 km servicing two weeks back and the service advisor was pushing for engine decorbonisation. His tone was as if this this is a part of the standard service. I had to stop him and told to him to do the standard 30000 service as per the manual. He backed off immediately. So I think there is some level of pushing for unnecessary services.

My first post to Team-BHP.
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