Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

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CobraKai
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Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by CobraKai » Fri Nov 08, 2019 9:49 pm

I went in for a routine oil change. They showed me an oil stain that I had under the oil pan and told me that the oil pan gasket needed to be changed. I was told this is a three hour job and they charged me $400. The guy told me it was 350 and then come to find out, it was 400. He said the 350 was for labor but I don't recall him saying "labor".

Anyway they made it sound like the oil could start pouring at at anytime and ruin my engine if I didn't get it taken care of. The repair was not covered under the ESP plan as the plan does not cover gaskets.

They also said it would take two hours but it took three hours.

I went ahead and gave them the green light but then I can't help but think I was mislead.

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arcticpineapplecorp.
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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by arcticpineapplecorp. » Fri Nov 08, 2019 9:55 pm

don't know specifically, but I don't think it's ever a good idea to get an oil change (or any repair for that matter) at a dealership, unless it's a repair covered under warranty or recall.

You always have the right to get a second opinion and if you did and a trusted mechanic said the dealership was lying, I'd be all over the dealership in terms of talking to the manager and not only letting them know I'd never buy a car from them again, I'd share my experience with every friend/family member within 500 miles and even go so far as putting a factual/truthful negative review on whatever review site does that sort of thing.

There's nothing you can do about it now, but it sounds like your intuition is telling you the dealership is not a place to have any work done. Buy a car there maybe, but have work that's not covered done? No.

You don't have to have the oil changed or any work done specifically at a dealership to maintain a warranty. You only have to validate you maintained the vehilce according to the manufacturer's specifications to avoid voiding the warranty. Anyone who says otherwise is not truthful. A dealership can not hold you hostage to have your vehicle serviced there forever. What if you bought the car and moved across country? Are you supposed to bring it back every 6 months to have the oil changed? Silly, right? Take it where you trust. Get reviews of mechanics and/or ask friends family where they get their cars serviced.
Last edited by arcticpineapplecorp. on Fri Nov 08, 2019 9:58 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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bob60014
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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by bob60014 » Fri Nov 08, 2019 9:55 pm

Oil stain? Frankly, sounds like a scam.

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TxAg
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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by TxAg » Fri Nov 08, 2019 9:57 pm

...and that's how they make their money

criticalmass
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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by criticalmass » Fri Nov 08, 2019 10:01 pm

CobraKai wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 9:49 pm
I went in for a routine oil change. They showed me an oil stain that I had under the oil pan and told me that the oil pan gasket needed to be changed. I was told this is a three hour job and they charged me $400. The guy told me it was 350 and then come to find out, it was 400. He said the 350 was for labor but I don't recall him saying "labor".

Anyway they made it sound like the oil could start pouring at at anytime and ruin my engine if I didn't get it taken care of. The repair was not covered under the ESP plan as the plan does not cover gaskets.

They also said it would take two hours but it took three hours.

I went ahead and gave them the green light but then I can't help but think I was mislead.
Assuming you saw the underneath of the car, I'm surprised they let you in the shop at all while it was on the lift. Most shops keep customers far away, for liability reasons, among others. First red flag.

Oil gets under the pan for all kinds of reasons, including changing the oil when the drops start running down the pan from the drain until the plug is replaced. That doesn't mean your gasket is bad.

Was the gasket wet with oil on the outside? That could/might indicate a bad gasket, not oil under the pan by itself. If not, second red flag.

Replacing the gasket consists of removing the pan (AFTER draining the oil), pulling out an old gasket, putting in a new gasket, and reinstalling the pan. Be prepared for a mess, but you already have a oil cart under the car, so no big deal. Then fill with clean oil, ensure a new filter is installed, and voila! New gasket and oil change. Shouldn't take more than an hour or two on average, depending on model. * Third red flag.

What is your car model/year/engine? That's a very important fact you left out. Are there any known oil gasket issues with this engine? (See model message boards). What is the book shop time for this repair? (See model message boards).
*Some models may have a complex procedure. This is more likely with cars built by companies who have headquarters in Europe.

No opportunity for a second opinion? Fourth red flag.

In my experience, dealers and others claim all sorts of "repairs" and "service" are needed, despite what is actually needed per the manufacturer and actual vehicle condition.
Last edited by criticalmass on Sat Nov 09, 2019 11:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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CobraKai
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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by CobraKai » Fri Nov 08, 2019 10:02 pm

bob60014 wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 9:55 pm
Oil stain? Frankly, sounds like a scam.
I wonder if the guy didn't just take a rag and wipe oil under the oil pan. I feel like an idiot now. I must look gullible or something.

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CobraKai
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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by CobraKai » Fri Nov 08, 2019 10:09 pm

arcticpineapplecorp. wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 9:55 pm
don't know specifically, but I don't think it's ever a good idea to get an oil change (or any repair for that matter) at a dealership, unless it's a repair covered under warranty or recall.

You always have the right to get a second opinion and if you did and a trusted mechanic said the dealership was lying, I'd be all over the dealership in terms of talking to the manager and not only letting them know I'd never buy a car from them again, I'd share my experience with every friend/family member within 500 miles and even go so far as putting a factual/truthful negative review on whatever review site does that sort of thing.

There's nothing you can do about it now, but it sounds like your intuition is telling you the dealership is not a place to have any work done. Buy a car there maybe, but have work that's not covered done? No.

You don't have to have the oil changed or any work done specifically at a dealership to maintain a warranty. You only have to validate you maintained the vehilce according to the manufacturer's specifications to avoid voiding the warranty. Anyone who says otherwise is not truthful. A dealership can not hold you hostage to have your vehicle serviced there forever. What if you bought the car and moved across country? Are you supposed to bring it back every 6 months to have the oil changed? Silly, right? Take it where you trust. Get reviews of mechanics and/or ask friends family where they get their cars serviced.
I have the ESP plan and the dealer charges a reasonable price for a full service oil change, plus I had to get a recall taken care of at the same time, so I took it there. Good point about not having to have oil changes done at the dealer. I always thought the oil change itself was a good deal as they check everything and I've never had an issue previously, as I've done a number of oil change there.

I was just thinking....ok if I don't get it done then I have to deal with the hassle of taking it somewhere else and then they could charge me just as much if not more.

I recall having an issue with my previous car where I did NOT take it to a dealer but instead went to what I thought was a "trusted mechanic" and they charged me $800 for a $300 and still did not get it right. I was able to do a charge back and get my money back. If I would have taken it to the dealer to begin with then I figured I would have avoided that situation.

One thing that's is that it seems like there are different people working at the counter every time I go there.

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CobraKai
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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by CobraKai » Fri Nov 08, 2019 10:16 pm

criticalmass wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 10:01 pm
Assuming you saw the underneath of the car, I'm surprised they let you in the shop at all while it was on the lift. Most shops keep customers far away, for liability reasons, among others. First red flag.
Really? I have been to other shops that allow this as well. Figured this was standard practice.
criticalmass wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 10:01 pm
Oil gets under the pan for all kinds of reasons, including changing the oil when the drops start running down the pan from the drain until the plug is replaced. That doesn't mean your gasket is bad.

Was the gasket wet with oil on the outside? That could/might indicate a bad gasket, not oil under the pan by itself. If not, second red flag.
Yes. It was a bad gasket. That is what they charged me to replace.
criticalmass wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 10:01 pm
Replacing the gasket consists of removing the pan (AFTER draining the oil), pulling out an old gasket, putting in a new gasket, and reinstalling the pan. Be prepared for a mess, but you already have a oil cart under the car, so no big deal. Then fill with clean oil, ensure a new filter is installed, and voila! New gasket and oil change. Shouldn't take more than 20-30 minutes*. Third red flag.
I was thinking the same and then googled it real quick after I agreed to the repair and it was 1.5-2 hours.
criticalmass wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 10:01 pm
What is your car model/year/engine? That's a very important fact you left out. Are there any known oil gasket issues with this engine? (See model message boards). What is the book shop time for this repair? (See model message boards).
*Some models may have a complex procedure. This is more likely with cars built by companies who have headquarters in Europe.
I don't want to get too specific but it's a Ford. The guy said it is very rare that he has seen an issue like this.
criticalmass wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 10:01 pm
No opportunity for a second opinion? Fourth red flag.

In my experience, dealers and others claim all sorts of "repairs" and "service" are needed, despite what is actually needed per the manufacturer and actual vehicle condition.
I could have said no. I did protest but reluctantly agreed to go through with the repair.

I realize that dealers tend to overcharge but wasn't aware that scamming is a common occurrence. I never really done any auto repair business with a dealer until I purchased this car.

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daytona084
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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by daytona084 » Fri Nov 08, 2019 10:19 pm

The oil pan gasket is at the top of the oil pan. The oil, even when full, is below this level. Yes, when the engine is running there is oil flying around in the crankcase, but there is no way the oil could start "pouring out".

It probably won't do you any good, but perhaps you could complain to the dealership owner / manager, the "zone office" or whatever they call it these days (next step above the dealer), the Better Business Bureau, and of course a bad review on Yelp.

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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by strafe » Fri Nov 08, 2019 10:21 pm

Can’t tell from the details you provided whether it was necessary.

A stain on the oil pan by itself wouldn’t be reason to change the gasket.
How often (in terms of miles) did you have to add make up oil? How much oil leaking on the ground?

Assuming there really was some seepage but no significant leak, I would have switched to a high mileage oil, which contains seal conditioners. Won’t stop leaks but will stop minor seepage.

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CobraKai
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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by CobraKai » Fri Nov 08, 2019 10:30 pm

daytona084 wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 10:19 pm
The oil pan gasket is at the top of the oil pan. The oil, even when full, is below this level. Yes, when the engine is running there is oil flying around in the crankcase, but there is no way the oil could start "pouring out".


I don't recall for sure that he used the word "pouring" but did insinuate I could lose the oil pretty quick and not realize it, ruining the engine.
daytona084 wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 10:19 pm
It probably won't do you any good, but perhaps you could complain to the dealership owner / manager, the "zone office" or whatever they call it these days (next step above the dealer), the Better Business Bureau, and of course a bad review on Yelp.
That's worth a try I guess. I don't think I will be going back there for any repairs.

I did get into a little argument with the guy at the counter when he handed me the bill and told me it would be 400 total, after telling me 350 earlier (after supposedly doing me a favor and marking it down from 390 to 350). He said the 350 was for labor and the other 50 for parts. That alone is reason enough to complain IMO.

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CobraKai
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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by CobraKai » Fri Nov 08, 2019 10:32 pm

strafe wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 10:21 pm
Can’t tell from the details you provided whether it was necessary.

A stain on the oil pan by itself wouldn’t be reason to change the gasket.
How often (in terms of miles) did you have to add make up oil? How much oil leaking on the ground?

Assuming there really was some seepage but no significant leak, I would have switched to a high mileage oil, which contains seal conditioners. Won’t stop leaks but will stop minor seepage.
I don't recall any leaking but couldn't tell since it's not parked on a concrete driveway. I haven't check the oil level in recent weeks.

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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by Grt2bOutdoors » Fri Nov 08, 2019 10:34 pm

daytona084 wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 10:19 pm
The oil pan gasket is at the top of the oil pan. The oil, even when full, is below this level. Yes, when the engine is running there is oil flying around in the crankcase, but there is no way the oil could start "pouring out".
That's correct and for the oil to be "pouring out" is to suggest that the bolts holding the pan to the engine block are loose. No way, those bolts are machined in with an air gun, how many cars on the road do you see losing their oil pans? Can't say I've seen one yet.

Usually, the oil seen under a car results from a leaking rear or front oil seal or a slightly loose bolt on the bottom of the oil pan. The oil seal usually is not replaced, the car just leaks oil, if it gets really bad then change it but usually, you'll just see an oil stain after you've pulled away from your parking spot. Rubber gaskets go bad over time.
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whodidntante
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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by whodidntante » Fri Nov 08, 2019 10:42 pm

Sounds like you got got.

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Brianmcg321
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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by Brianmcg321 » Fri Nov 08, 2019 10:45 pm

This is why I never change my oil.
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CobraKai
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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by CobraKai » Fri Nov 08, 2019 10:58 pm

Grt2bOutdoors wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 10:34 pm
That's correct and for the oil to be "pouring out" is to suggest that the bolts holding the pan to the engine block are loose. No way, those bolts are machined in with an air gun, how many cars on the road do you see losing their oil pans? Can't say I've seen one yet.

Usually, the oil seen under a car results from a leaking rear or front oil seal or a slightly loose bolt on the bottom of the oil pan. The oil seal usually is not replaced, the car just leaks oil, if it gets really bad then change it but usually, you'll just see an oil stain after you've pulled away from your parking spot. Rubber gaskets go bad over time.
My gut told me I was had about 5 minutes after I agreed to it. I almost went back in but figured I'd give them the benefit of the doubt after having numerous good experiences there in the past. I bet they were behind and my car sat there with no work being done for two of the three extra hours I waited. I should do some research and find out how long this REALLY takes and present to the manager. Not sure it would do any good though. The guy did tell me up front it is coded as a three hour job.

For some reason, I have had similar negative experiences with other mechanics, auto salesmen, and dentists over the past couple years. Perhaps owning a newer car has something to do with it as it might make them think I have money to burn.

Sometimes it's difficult to tell if there is a valid reason for doing something or if these professionals are looking to make a few extra bucks. The guy at the counter was pretty convincing and reminded me of a car salesman, probably makes a commission from repairs. With that being said, this one is on me.

runner3081
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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by runner3081 » Fri Nov 08, 2019 11:20 pm

criticalmass wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 10:01 pm
CobraKai wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 9:49 pm
I went in for a routine oil change. They showed me an oil stain that I had under the oil pan and told me that the oil pan gasket needed to be changed. I was told this is a three hour job and they charged me $400. The guy told me it was 350 and then come to find out, it was 400. He said the 350 was for labor but I don't recall him saying "labor".

Anyway they made it sound like the oil could start pouring at at anytime and ruin my engine if I didn't get it taken care of. The repair was not covered under the ESP plan as the plan does not cover gaskets.

They also said it would take two hours but it took three hours.

I went ahead and gave them the green light but then I can't help but think I was mislead.
Assuming you saw the underneath of the car, I'm surprised they let you in the shop at all while it was on the lift. Most shops keep customers far away, for liability reasons, among others. First red flag.
Never heard of that, they never have a problem when I ask to go under the lift.

Rdytoretire
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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by Rdytoretire » Fri Nov 08, 2019 11:26 pm

Sounds like business as usual at most car dealerships. Unless the repair is under warranty or the repair can only be done by the dealer I would never get repairs done at a dealer. And even under those circumstances I would still avoid taking my car to most dealerships. They provide free/cheap oil changes just so they can get you in for more expensive and often unneeded repairs. Look for a good independent shop. Ask your friends/coworkers for suggestions.
Last edited by Rdytoretire on Fri Nov 08, 2019 11:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Grt2bOutdoors
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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by Grt2bOutdoors » Fri Nov 08, 2019 11:27 pm

CobraKai wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 10:58 pm
Grt2bOutdoors wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 10:34 pm
That's correct and for the oil to be "pouring out" is to suggest that the bolts holding the pan to the engine block are loose. No way, those bolts are machined in with an air gun, how many cars on the road do you see losing their oil pans? Can't say I've seen one yet.

Usually, the oil seen under a car results from a leaking rear or front oil seal or a slightly loose bolt on the bottom of the oil pan. The oil seal usually is not replaced, the car just leaks oil, if it gets really bad then change it but usually, you'll just see an oil stain after you've pulled away from your parking spot. Rubber gaskets go bad over time.
My gut told me I was had about 5 minutes after I agreed to it. I almost went back in but figured I'd give them the benefit of the doubt after having numerous good experiences there in the past. I bet they were behind and my car sat there with no work being done for two of the three extra hours I waited. I should do some research and find out how long this REALLY takes and present to the manager. Not sure it would do any good though. The guy did tell me up front it is coded as a three hour job.

For some reason, I have had similar negative experiences with other mechanics, auto salesmen, and dentists over the past couple years. Perhaps owning a newer car has something to do with it as it might make them think I have money to burn.

Sometimes it's difficult to tell if there is a valid reason for doing something or if these professionals are looking to make a few extra bucks. The guy at the counter was pretty convincing and reminded me of a car salesman, probably makes a commission from repairs. With that being said, this one is on me.
Long long ago, I was burned at a mechanic's shop. I realized I was getting burned, when the guy tried to get me to sell my car to him for $25, after charging me $300! I then brought my car to a distant relative who taught me about cars. Today, we have the internet, you can google just about any question you might have about your car's problem and narrow it down to 1 or a couple of things that might be wrong with it, you can bring your car to Autozone and have them hook the car up to a diagnostic tool, you can search YouTube. Back in the day, all we had was Chilton books and they didn't tell you what was wrong, they just gave diagrams and limited instruction on how to replace parts. Some of the replacement required a lift, that is where the mechanic comes in.

I've had mechanics try to scam me, the last time around the guy claimed my struts were going bad because they were "leaking" - well, they might show some slight leakage but there are other symptoms of struts going bad and my car had zero of it. After talking with the mechanic he just looked at me and gave up, he knew the "sale" wasn't going to happen.

There are "service" trades that are looking to make a quick buck, they have to meet their overhead or they are out of business. They aren't discriminating, if they can take you for extra money, they will. It's caveat emptor or buyer beware, I've seen this time and time again, the last time this happened to family, it was the plumber. I could write pages and I'm sure may other forum posters could as well.
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DavidHutton
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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by DavidHutton » Fri Nov 08, 2019 11:30 pm

You didn’t say what kind of Ford you had but I found this on the net.

https://repairpal.com/estimator/ford/f- ... eseal-cost

The average cost for a Ford F-150 oil pan gasket replacement is between $572 and $685. Labor costs are estimated between $325 and $411 while parts are priced between $247 and $274. Estimate does not include taxes and fees.

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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by Grt2bOutdoors » Fri Nov 08, 2019 11:32 pm

runner3081 wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 11:20 pm
criticalmass wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 10:01 pm
CobraKai wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 9:49 pm
I went in for a routine oil change. They showed me an oil stain that I had under the oil pan and told me that the oil pan gasket needed to be changed. I was told this is a three hour job and they charged me $400. The guy told me it was 350 and then come to find out, it was 400. He said the 350 was for labor but I don't recall him saying "labor".

Anyway they made it sound like the oil could start pouring at at anytime and ruin my engine if I didn't get it taken care of. The repair was not covered under the ESP plan as the plan does not cover gaskets.

They also said it would take two hours but it took three hours.

I went ahead and gave them the green light but then I can't help but think I was mislead.
Assuming you saw the underneath of the car, I'm surprised they let you in the shop at all while it was on the lift. Most shops keep customers far away, for liability reasons, among others. First red flag.
Never heard of that, they never have a problem when I ask to go under the lift.
The problems start when the car falls off the lift and seriously injures you.
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RickBoglehead
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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by RickBoglehead » Fri Nov 08, 2019 11:33 pm

Backseat forum auto repair experts, coupled with not being there, yields....
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Rdytoretire
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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by Rdytoretire » Fri Nov 08, 2019 11:45 pm

Grt2bOutdoors wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 11:27 pm

There are "service" trades that are looking to make a quick buck, they have to meet their overhead or they are out of business. They aren't discriminating, if they can take you for extra money, they will. It's caveat emptor or buyer beware, I've seen this time and time again, the last time this happened to family, it was the plumber. I could write pages and I'm sure may other forum posters could as well.

So true, I am no longer surprised how incompetent and careless most of these"service" providers (auto mechanics, plumbers, heating and cooling pros) tend to be. I would have no issues to pay someone to perform a service if I could expect them to do a reasonable job. Sadly I am disappointed about 50% of the time. I end up doing as many repairs, on the house and car, as possible myself because it's usually less of a hassle then dealing with the "pros".

Rdytoretire
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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by Rdytoretire » Fri Nov 08, 2019 11:47 pm

RickBoglehead wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 11:33 pm
Backseat forum auto repair experts, coupled with not being there, yields....
We may not know the details of the OP's situation, it may have all been very legit. It's just that being "taken" in this type of situation is all too common.

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Watty
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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by Watty » Fri Nov 08, 2019 11:52 pm

If you look around you will likely be able to find a forum for just that specific model of car.

You could ask you question there and get feedback from people that know a lot about that specific model.

KandT
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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by KandT » Sat Nov 09, 2019 12:00 am

Please dont be hard on yourself. You are an expert in your field and felt they were an expert in their's. Maybe the gasket did need replaced and it's too late now to know so dwelling on it only increases the price of this interaction.

So what can you do moving forward? Ask everyone you know if they have a place they trust where they take their car. I found a guy who is in the middle of no where and his place is PACKED all the time. The first time I went there I had to talk him into taking on a new customer! That was about a decade ago and I never felt cheated one time. He doesn't follow any corporate policies or rules - just uses common sense. You can sit on a tire while he works on your car if you want but he doesn't have any seats or coffee. No coke machine either and his bathroom is covered in grease.

I know when I go there with an appointment that he will be finishing up a car when I get there so I will have to wait. I chat with him while he does that car. Then we BS while he does mine. I usually make fun of him and he makes fun of me. He remembers the mileage on my cars and what he did to them last time and what they might need this time.

I had a truck that was rusting out and he passed it and told me to sell it. Next inspection it was gonna need some expensive work.

Trusted mechanics are out there - you just got to find them.

KandT
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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by KandT » Sat Nov 09, 2019 12:03 am

Rdytoretire wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 11:45 pm
Grt2bOutdoors wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 11:27 pm

There are "service" trades that are looking to make a quick buck, they have to meet their overhead or they are out of business. They aren't discriminating, if they can take you for extra money, they will. It's caveat emptor or buyer beware, I've seen this time and time again, the last time this happened to family, it was the plumber. I could write pages and I'm sure may other forum posters could as well.

So true, I am no longer surprised how incompetent and careless most of these"service" providers (auto mechanics, plumbers, heating and cooling pros) tend to be. I would have no issues to pay someone to perform a service if I could expect them to do a reasonable job. Sadly I am disappointed about 50% of the time. I end up doing as many repairs, on the house and car, as possible myself because it's usually less of a hassle then dealing with the "pros".
+1 here a lot of times. The advantage you didn't mention though is you LEARN something new which is supposed to be good for that thing between your ears. Also, you increase your understanding of the world. What I mean by that is understanding how hydraulics work makes it easier to understand how brakes work. there is cross over in your knowledge.

Want to learn a ton about everything fast? Buy an RV :oops:

criticalmass
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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by criticalmass » Sat Nov 09, 2019 12:44 am

CobraKai wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 10:30 pm
daytona084 wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 10:19 pm
The oil pan gasket is at the top of the oil pan. The oil, even when full, is below this level. Yes, when the engine is running there is oil flying around in the crankcase, but there is no way the oil could start "pouring out".


I don't recall for sure that he used the word "pouring" but did insinuate I could lose the oil pretty quick and not realize it, ruining the engine.
daytona084 wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 10:19 pm
It probably won't do you any good, but perhaps you could complain to the dealership owner / manager, the "zone office" or whatever they call it these days (next step above the dealer), the Better Business Bureau, and of course a bad review on Yelp.
That's worth a try I guess. I don't think I will be going back there for any repairs.

I did get into a little argument with the guy at the counter when he handed me the bill and told me it would be 400 total, after telling me 350 earlier (after supposedly doing me a favor and marking it down from 390 to 350). He said the 350 was for labor and the other 50 for parts. That alone is reason enough to complain IMO.
Keep in mind that dealers often use the commissioned "service advisor" model. The customer generally can't talk to the actual maintainers. The customer talks to a service advisor who sells them repairs and takes the order. They have incentive to recommend all kinds of things that you may or may not need, as they are paid and/or incentivized on a sales commission.

North Carolina Consumer's Council has an excellent new article on car dealer "service advisors."
https://www.ncconsumer.org/news-article ... vices.html

Topic Author
CobraKai
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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by CobraKai » Sat Nov 09, 2019 12:51 am

DavidHutton wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 11:30 pm
You didn’t say what kind of Ford you had but I found this on the net.

https://repairpal.com/estimator/ford/f- ... eseal-cost

The average cost for a Ford F-150 oil pan gasket replacement is between $572 and $685. Labor costs are estimated between $325 and $411 while parts are priced between $247 and $274. Estimate does not include taxes and fees.
I don't want to get too detailed but the price ranges I looked up online seemed to come close to the price I was charged. Found this excerpt:

How important is replacing an oil pan gasket?
Your engine needs oil to function properly and safely. The oil in your car is collected and stored in the oil pan. The oil pan gasket acts as a seal for the oil pan. When the gaskets are damaged, oil will leak out of the oil pan, past the gaskets, and out of your engine. As a result, your engine will lose oil, which can result in catastrophic engine damage.

https://www.yourmechanic.com/services/o ... eplacement

The mechanics weren't 100% or even half wrong. Oil will leak out if the gasket is damaged. They may have exaggerated the amount of oil that could be lost. They made it sound like I could drive to work and all of the oil would be drained during my commute and it's hard telling when it would happen. That's stretching the truth but I suppose that could be possible if one were not to check the oil for months.

Topic Author
CobraKai
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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by CobraKai » Sat Nov 09, 2019 12:58 am

Rdytoretire wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 11:45 pm
Grt2bOutdoors wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 11:27 pm

There are "service" trades that are looking to make a quick buck, they have to meet their overhead or they are out of business. They aren't discriminating, if they can take you for extra money, they will. It's caveat emptor or buyer beware, I've seen this time and time again, the last time this happened to family, it was the plumber. I could write pages and I'm sure may other forum posters could as well.

So true, I am no longer surprised how incompetent and careless most of these"service" providers (auto mechanics, plumbers, heating and cooling pros) tend to be. I would have no issues to pay someone to perform a service if I could expect them to do a reasonable job. Sadly I am disappointed about 50% of the time. I end up doing as many repairs, on the house and car, as possible myself because it's usually less of a hassle then dealing with the "pros".
I've been having the same issues with the "pros". Good to know it's not just me. I thought maybe I had "sucker" stamped on my forehead or something. I try to do what I can as far as house repair goes, unless it's something potentially dangerous like roof or tree work. And obviously I cannot work on my own teeth. Last time I went to the dentist, he recommended getting a tooth crowned that isn't bothering me. Maybe it's legit and it's something I better address before it gets worse (and more expensive to treat). Or maybe it's not all that necessary and he's looking to make a buck. I guess it comes down to trust in a lot of these cases. Either you trust their opinion and go with the flow, or not.

Topic Author
CobraKai
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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by CobraKai » Sat Nov 09, 2019 1:03 am

KandT wrote:
Sat Nov 09, 2019 12:00 am
Please dont be hard on yourself. You are an expert in your field and felt they were an expert in their's. Maybe the gasket did need replaced and it's too late now to know so dwelling on it only increases the price of this interaction.
True. What's done is done.
KandT wrote:
Sat Nov 09, 2019 12:00 am
So what can you do moving forward? Ask everyone you know if they have a place they trust where they take their car. I found a guy who is in the middle of no where and his place is PACKED all the time. The first time I went there I had to talk him into taking on a new customer! That was about a decade ago and I never felt cheated one time. He doesn't follow any corporate policies or rules - just uses common sense. You can sit on a tire while he works on your car if you want but he doesn't have any seats or coffee. No coke machine either and his bathroom is covered in grease.
This dealer has a big screen TV, comfortable chairs, a nice waiting room, and "free" water. That was the most expensive bottle of water I've ever drank!
KandT wrote:
Sat Nov 09, 2019 12:00 am
I know when I go there with an appointment that he will be finishing up a car when I get there so I will have to wait. I chat with him while he does that car. Then we BS while he does mine. I usually make fun of him and he makes fun of me. He remembers the mileage on my cars and what he did to them last time and what they might need this time.

I had a truck that was rusting out and he passed it and told me to sell it. Next inspection it was gonna need some expensive work.

Trusted mechanics are out there - you just got to find them.
True

zlandar
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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by zlandar » Sat Nov 09, 2019 6:32 am

Scotty Kilmer changing the oil gasket:

https://youtu.be/eJY_4zhhNPA

The amount of work this takes varies a lot depending on the car model.

LifeIsGood
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Location: Atlanta, GA

Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by LifeIsGood » Sat Nov 09, 2019 6:36 am

Did you look on the floor where you park your car at home? If there was fresh oil noticed then maybe you did need a new gasket. The price is another matter though.

t885
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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by t885 » Sat Nov 09, 2019 7:10 am

whodidntante wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 10:42 pm
Sounds like you got got.
Unfortunately this is the correct answer.
There are two kinds of forecasters: those who don't know, and those who don't know they don't know

hershey102d
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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by hershey102d » Sat Nov 09, 2019 7:23 am

RickBoglehead wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 11:33 pm
Backseat forum auto repair experts, coupled with not being there, yields....
+1. The poster who stated replacing the gasket should only take 20-30 minutes has apparently never changed one. Removing pan, scraping old gasket, cleaning residue from pan and drying it, installing new gasket and torquing a plethora of bolts. Not saying that it should cost $400 but let’s not exaggerate to make a point.

Helo80
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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by Helo80 » Sat Nov 09, 2019 7:25 am

RickBoglehead wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 11:33 pm
Backseat forum auto repair experts, coupled with not being there, yields....
Far more to the point and humorous than I could have been...

my favorite was listening to somebody here explaining why their 2+ Ton Suburban with 180k+ miles still had good shocks because the annual state safety inspection covered checking the shocks if you looked at the DOT website....
Last edited by Helo80 on Sat Nov 09, 2019 7:39 am, edited 1 time in total.

Helo80
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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by Helo80 » Sat Nov 09, 2019 7:28 am

CobraKai wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 10:16 pm
criticalmass wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 10:01 pm
What is your car model/year/engine? That's a very important fact you left out. Are there any known oil gasket issues with this engine? (See model message boards). What is the book shop time for this repair? (See model message boards).
*Some models may have a complex procedure. This is more likely with cars built by companies who have headquarters in Europe.
I don't want to get too specific but it's a Ford. The guy said it is very rare that he has seen an issue like this.

If you're not going to provide the make/model/miles on the car, you are honestly wasting everybody's time.

Even if you had a Ford GT (which I am guessing is the most rare production car Ford has), the dealership and/or FMC has better things to do than to scan forums for unhappy customer experiences. Then again, if you did have a Ford GT, you wouldn't care over a $400 charge.

CurlyDave
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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by CurlyDave » Sat Nov 09, 2019 7:31 am

DavidHutton wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 11:30 pm
You didn’t say what kind of Ford you had but I found this on the net.

https://repairpal.com/estimator/ford/f- ... eseal-cost

The average cost for a Ford F-150 oil pan gasket replacement is between $572 and $685. Labor costs are estimated between $325 and $411 while parts are priced between $247 and $274. Estimate does not include taxes and fees.
IMHO this site is very suspect. A F-150 is a pickup truck, but they show a drawing of a passenger car...

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JoeRetire
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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by JoeRetire » Sat Nov 09, 2019 7:32 am

CobraKai wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 9:49 pm
I went in for a routine oil change.
Went in where? Your dealership? A national oil change franchise? Greasy Bob's Auto Repair and Bait Shop?
I was told this is a three hour job and they charged me $400. The guy told me it was 350 and then come to find out, it was 400. He said the 350 was for labor but I don't recall him saying "labor".
You didn't think the "three hour" part meant labor?
They also said it would take two hours but it took three hours.
This is confusing. "I was told this is a three hour job" then "They also said it would take two hours". ???
Don't be a lemming.

Helo80
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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by Helo80 » Sat Nov 09, 2019 7:33 am

hershey102d wrote:
Sat Nov 09, 2019 7:23 am
RickBoglehead wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 11:33 pm
Backseat forum auto repair experts, coupled with not being there, yields....
+1. The poster who stated replacing the gasket should only take 20-30 minutes has apparently never changed one. Removing pan, scraping old gasket, cleaning residue from pan and drying it, installing new gasket and torquing a plethora of bolts. Not saying that it should cost $400 but let’s not exaggerate to make a point.

Yup... 100%.

People that come to this forum for car advice... I don't mean to be offensive.... but many physicians post here and some of them have to be very blunt with histrionic patients and what not... but it's the blind leading the blind. If I need help with a 3-fund portfolio, I'll come here... absolutely. If I need car help, I would never come here.

Helo80
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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by Helo80 » Sat Nov 09, 2019 7:36 am

zlandar wrote:
Sat Nov 09, 2019 6:32 am
Scotty Kilmer changing the oil gasket:

https://youtu.be/eJY_4zhhNPA

The amount of work this takes varies a lot depending on the car model.

I like some of Scotty's videos.... I really do... and I'm not questioning his qualifications... but he sometimes generalizes way too much, and I'm not surprised that (i think) he had a breathalyzer installed on his car. He's like a BH that knows about car.... everything is junk except Toyota.

3-20Characters
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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by 3-20Characters » Sat Nov 09, 2019 7:40 am

I’ll play devil’s advocate. We don’t know what vehicle you have (unless I missed it, you say ford but not the model). Looking up Ford Explorer for example, the price is not out of whack and may even be low. How much the part costs is immaterial. That’s like saying dinner at the restaurant cost me $50 but I could have cooked it myself for $15. Not useful information.

Labor is charged based on job—even though it’s listed as hours. If job x is 1.5 hours, you pay labor rate x 1.5 plus parts whether job takes 30 minutes or 3 hours. So how long they took is immaterial.

There is no way for people on the internet to know if the job was warranted or not. If you don’t trust your mechanic, this question will come up with almost every repair. Very few people know cars well enough and have the tools to make the correct diagnosis. When they do, they usually make the repair themselves.

You say that you have been ripped off by many different service providers. It could be that you’re overly suspicious or seek out poor service providers. If you go in thinking you’re being ripped off, your mind will convince you that you were. A mechanic (whether dealer or independent) is in a good position to rip you off due to the nature of the biz, yet there are many honest ones out there because they value a good reputation, repeat biz, and referrals. It’s wise to get referrals and do research so that you have some confidence/trust going in. You must always stay alert to changes in behavior but if you go in thinking that you’re going to get ripped off, find another shop.

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wander
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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by wander » Sat Nov 09, 2019 7:56 am

zlandar wrote:
Sat Nov 09, 2019 6:32 am
Scotty Kilmer changing the oil gasket:

https://youtu.be/eJY_4zhhNPA

The amount of work this takes varies a lot depending on the car model.
For many cars, the crossbar is in the way so you have to remove crossbar, motor mounts, ... before getting to the oil pan.

As other posters have mentioned, you cannot do anything about it. However, you can learn from it. For me, oil stain is nothing to worry about. If you don't seen oil leaking on your garage floor and no oil loss between oil changes, then you should not even listen to people trying to sell their service. You can wipe the oil stain off and take a drive to see if it comes back, then make decision. Again, I don't know the model of your car so it is impossible to estimate how long to replace oil pan gasket.

FRANK2009
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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by FRANK2009 » Sat Nov 09, 2019 8:03 am

Maybe, maybe not. The dealer could have saved you an engine. OTOH, tightening the pan bolts to spec may have been all that was needed.

bloom2708
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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by bloom2708 » Sat Nov 09, 2019 8:04 am

Do you have oil drips on your garage floor or where you regularly park?

$400. Not life ending. No reason to have so much angst.


Life is too short.
"People want confirmation, not advice" Unknown | "We are here to provoke thoughtfulness, not agree with you" Unknown | Four words. Whole food, plant based. Bing it.

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ClevrChico
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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by ClevrChico » Sat Nov 09, 2019 8:20 am

Dealerships are notorious for doing unnecessary work. How it's not considered theft is surprising.

Most likely you did have a a small leak that could have been left alone. Most likely you paid 2X what an independent would charge.

Lesson: Only go to the dealer for warranty work, and don't let them fix anything else.

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F150HD
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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by F150HD » Sat Nov 09, 2019 8:35 am

OP- you don't state the make model or AGE of the vehicle in your first post. Kinda necessary info for this thread to be meaningful. You also would've most likely seen fresh oil dripped regularly onto your garage floor? (did that occur?)

wilshuer
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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by wilshuer » Sat Nov 09, 2019 8:41 am

Helo80 wrote:
Sat Nov 09, 2019 7:25 am
RickBoglehead wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 11:33 pm
Backseat forum auto repair experts, coupled with not being there, yields....
Far more to the point and humorous than I could have been...

my favorite was listening to somebody here explaining why their 2+ Ton Suburban with 180k+ miles still had good shocks because the annual state safety inspection covered checking the shocks if you looked at the DOT website....
If you’re talking about me, thank your for your advice about how to keep my Suburban running safely. I’m quite adept at car repairs, and because my Suburban has 180k+ miles it isn’t unsafe.

HoosierJim
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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by HoosierJim » Sat Nov 09, 2019 9:34 am

CobraKai wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 10:02 pm
I wonder if the guy didn't just take a rag and wipe oil under the oil pan.
This is the same rag he shows everybody - wasn't even your oil or pan.

Reminds me of the extra $$$ I paid for TRU-COAT from Jerry Lundegaard at the Fargo dealership :moneybag

Last potential ripoff for me was a dealer warranty issue for the gm key switch issue - dealer said I needed a new cabin filter because it was packed with dirt. The problem was I personally changed that filter about 1 week earlier. Reported it to GM and never heard anything back.

Helo80
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Re: Was I ripped off at the car dealership?

Post by Helo80 » Sat Nov 09, 2019 9:59 am

wilshuer wrote:
Sat Nov 09, 2019 8:41 am
Helo80 wrote:
Sat Nov 09, 2019 7:25 am
RickBoglehead wrote:
Fri Nov 08, 2019 11:33 pm
Backseat forum auto repair experts, coupled with not being there, yields....
Far more to the point and humorous than I could have been...

my favorite was listening to somebody here explaining why their 2+ Ton Suburban with 180k+ miles still had good shocks because the annual state safety inspection covered checking the shocks if you looked at the DOT website....
If you’re talking about me, thank your for your advice about how to keep my Suburban running safely. I’m quite adept at car repairs, and because my Suburban has 180k+ miles it isn’t unsafe.


IDK --- did we? Did you go back and forth with myself and a few others and insist that because somebody in your state (I believe PA) for the annual safety inspection marked the shocks as good recently that they were still good?

If memory serves and I understood the poster correctly, their GMC/Chevy Suburban type vehicle with 180k+ miles had never had the shocks changed and they were still good based upon lack of comment from annual safety inspection. (In my state, I've done annual safety inspections where I never handed over the keys and the shop was so busy they just marked it as good --- I'm not commenting on the ethics of it...)

Myself, and several others, were incredulous that we could not get through to a poster that shocks with 180k miles are bad and at that point, you're just relying upon the coil spring. If you are in fact this poster ---- dude... shocks go bad and they are not a dealership scam. (But, that is the default position of many people in financial forums... car dealerships are just scam artists....)

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