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bulltrout

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bulltrout last won the day on June 19

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  1. bulltrout

    Charges for test drive damage

    Finally resolved. No charge for the radiator work. I went in this morning, asked for the general manager, got his assistant to whom I described the situation. I waited in the showroom and the GM came down after about 5 minutes, said my truck was ready to go and there was no charge for the radiator. He also warned me there are rocks all over the frame and it will happen again. I suppressed the eye roll reflex but will look things over underneath to be sure. The only debris near the engine bay was a thin layer of dirt on the suspension wishbones. There is a frame cross member below the radiator but a rock would have to levitate nearly a foot to reach the fan, which would have kicked it back toward the engine anyway. I paid for the service I ordered, and drove away from Fritts Ford for the final time. There are other places in the area to get service if the need arises on a future visit. FWIW, since I never authorized the radiator work that was already completed, it seems they knew they were on the hook for it. Their various offers were just attempts to get me to OK the work so they could bill me for something that was their responsibility. I understand mistakes happen, but a conscientious business person seeks to proactively make things right for the customer when it does. Instead, Fritts Ford seemed to treat their mistake as an opportunity to make more money. If I was the typical out-of-state traveller in a hurry to get somewhere else, it might have worked. Thank you all for you feedback and support. Mom is stable for now, but her long-term prognosis isn't great. She beat terminal cancer 21 years ago but her body took a beating in the process. I've learned to not count her out, however. She's a feisty Irish/Sicilian fire cracker.
  2. bulltrout

    Charges for test drive damage

    So the Ford dealer finally called back about 5:15 p.m., not the service manager or service director I talked to, but the young lady who works at the service desk. They offered me employee pricing for the repair, about $468, rather than the $630+ they quoted me originally. I told them I'd call back in the morning. I need to decide how I'm going to handle this. I can't see paying them another dime, but I've got to figure out how to get the radiator replaced. I can do it myself, but the shop is about 6-7 miles of often crowded SoCal roads and I don't want to damage my engine. FYI, the Ford dealer in question is Fritts Ford in Riverside, CA. www.frittsford.com
  3. bulltrout

    Charges for test drive damage

    I agree. What are the odds that happening, as compared to the tech, who was just in the engine bay, leaving a wire brush behind? They just "cleaned" the battery terminals for me. I passed on the $30 charge for that.
  4. bulltrout

    Charges for test drive damage

    Btw, mom's doing better, but they're not ready to send her home just yet. Thanks.
  5. bulltrout

    Charges for test drive damage

    I met with the service director Friday. He was unfamiliar with my case and the people who I've been dealing with were already gone for the weekend. I'll hear back on Monday. Idk what to make of this. The department manager did say that it does happen that rocks fly up into radiators, and I suppose that's possible, but I fish and hunt all the time and spend considerable time off road. Not rock crawling or anything, but dirt roads traveling to spots. I've never put a hole in a radiator, or had any other problems of this sort. It seems more likely the service tech left a tool in the engine compartment that caused the damage. I remain surprised at how this turned out. With a significant service bill already, that they didn't just explain it and offer to fix, for free, or at a minimum for the cost of parts. Instead, they started with the full cost of the job, and I think a highly questionable theory that rocks on the frame flew up into the fan. And there are those out-of-state plates on my truck, which lends credence to some of the unfavorable opinions offered above. I'll report back after I hear from them on Monday.
  6. bulltrout

    Charges for test drive damage

    Btw, that sounds bad. My front rotors were wobbling, but around town it was hardly noticeable. The Interstate road trip made clear I needed to get this taken care now, rather than wait any longer.
  7. bulltrout

    Charges for test drive damage

    I appreciate the feedback. I haven't pushed back yet because I am here dealing with some serious health issues with my mother. Fortunately for both that situation and this, I am an educator off for the summer and this is my hometown so I am staying with family and have a vehicle to use while this is resolved. My mother's situation is going to keep me here for a few weeks anyway. I intend to contact the dealer later today to try to get this resolved, but before doing so I wanted to gather some intel. One of the unfortunate aspects of this is that I am a lifelong Ford guy and I mistakenly assumed that I could trust a dealer to be a straight shooter. If I hadn't been on the road I likely would have done this work myself. I've never changed a pinion seal but it looks like a reasonable project. I also had them do some brake work I'd been putting off, and also likely would have done myself, but under the circumstances just wanted to get things fixed while I focused on my mother. I've actually used this dealer for service once before, for an oil change while I was visiting. Btw, I've been a member here for a long time, but I almost never post. I have learned a ton just reading discussions here. This forum is bookmarked on my devices and I am here educating myself on a regular basis. I didn't immediately post the name of the dealer because I actually expected them to call me back and apologize and do the right, and ethical thing. There's no business where this kind of practice is acceptable. This is why a shop has insurance. A smart, ethical business person would say: We want customers to understand our first priority is to make things right. You think that's the way the world should work, but we are constantly reminded that not everyone operates honestly. Once I've had time to deal with this I will follow up with info on the resolution. Thank you for your help.
  8. bulltrout

    Charges for test drive damage

    I’ve never had anything like this happen to me before, and I’ve even had repair guys fix stuff without charge when it was obviously my fault. I’m really disappointed to be treated this way at a Ford Dealership. This doesn’t seem to be SOP, charging for repairs during the time the repair shop has the vehicle. My nephew works at the nearby Toyota shop and he said they’d of course repair it with no charge. i think I might do the radiator thing, but pick it up ahead of time and just drive out and park in front of the showroom and replace it, with a sign on my truck explaining this is how this Dealership treats its customers.
  9. I'm dealing with family issues in California and on my drive from out of state the pinion seal on my 2013 F150 started leaking. When I arrived I had it repaired at the Ford dealer in town. After the repair I got a call from service saying that when the tech returned from the test drive (to make sure the rear end wasn't making noise indicating bearing problems in the dif I believe) there was coolant all over the front of the engine and they asked me for authorization to diagnose the leak (a $130 charge if I declined the service). Skeptical, I declined to authorize the service. The next day the service manager called to explain the car could not be released as there was a hole in the radiator that made the car undriveable. The service manager said that on a test drive a rock must have been thrown up into the fan, kicking it into the radiator. The rock put the hole in the radiator and also damaged the fan. He claimed the rock must have been resting on the frame as they found other gravel on the frame. He quoted me a price of $630 for parts and service to replace the radiator (but not the fan). I did not authorize the work and since have been dealing with the family stuff, and wondering how to proceed. I was surprised to be asked to pay for the repair, and am dubious about the explanation. I just drove 1,200 miles to get here without any frame-resting rocks flying into the fan. Have any of you ever experienced something like this from dealer service? Is it normal for dealers to charge full price for repairs that occurred while the vehicle is being test driven? Thanks.
  10. bulltrout

    Wards '19 Best Engines

    My 2013 F-150 with the 5.0 has 130,000 trouble-free miles. It’s a great engine.
  11. bulltrout

    F150 EB on Ebay

    Uglier than the color are those terrible arched creases on the fenders. Who green lighted that styling disaster? The more I see this latest F-150, the less I like it. Still, best in class by a long shot.
  12. bulltrout

    03 Explorer parking brakes

    Thanks. I have seen the hole cutout and thought I might have to knock it out. Does Ford make a plug to fill the hole once I knock it out? I'll check with my dealer and see if they can help.
  13. bulltrout

    Faulty Explorer Part?

    It's clearly a design flaw. Mine was quickly replaced. In and out in a day.
  14. bulltrout

    Faulty Explorer Part?

    Had the piece replaced under warranty on my 03 Explorer couple years ago. The replacement cracked last winter. Does anyone know how to access the adjustment wheel for the small drums that serve as emergency brakes on the Explorer?
  15. bulltrout

    03 Explorer parking brakes

    Has disc brakes to stop the car, smaller drums for emergency brakes. Rear end is different from F 150 as it has IRS. Still can't find the plugs that would allow me to access wheel and adjust drums.
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