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Flying monkey herder
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Picked up my car a little over a year ago (9/21/01)
called up the dealer to schedule an appointment for an oilservice and NYS safety inspection, car still had ~800 miles left on the SI indicator when i called, now down to 300. Service person said that was fine since the car was a year old, they would do the oilservice on 9/24/02 and reset the SI.
Get to the dealer this morning. when they looked me up in the computer, it turns out that i wasn't entered into bmw's warranty database untill 9/26/01, so they initially refuse to do the service and ask me to come back in two days for an oilchange and then come back in 300 miles or whenever the SI hits 0 for the oilservice (what the.....?). talk to the manager and he goes into how they cant do it because BMW NA wont authorize it, but that they would download the data from the computer and see what could be done. talked to my service advisor again and he goes into the mode of "oh, we'll try but it hasnt been a year yet, and we can't do the service unless BMWNA authorizes it" Now it has been over a year, just that someone let the warranty activation slide for almost a week. my registration, even the dealer's database shows a date of 9/21/01

now I already took a day off of work to deal with this, had to get my inspection sticker renewed in any case, but the prospect of having to come back and miss another day isnt sitting too well. Called the advsior's bluff and made a call to BMWNA to get the service authorized. BMWNA called the dealer to give authorizaton for the service, but now they're dragging their feet. my SA put me on hold and hung up on me the first time (methinks he's not happy i called him on his bluff) and went on about how they still need to see if they can do it, even though BMWNA authorized it, and told me i was making a big deal out of nothing when i finally got him on the line the second time.

So, am I making a big deal out of nothing? I'm normally not high strung, but I really dont have the time to take more days off of work because someone messed up a year ago, and also when they set the date for the appointment....

FYI:
http://bimmer.roadfly.org/bmw/forums/e46/archives/forum.php?postid=572995&page=13
TSB about low mileage oilservice
 

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I feel your pain, anger, frustration..... welcome to the club - all part of being a bimmer owner :banghead:

I would take it to another dealer. Speak with a service manager and not an advisor.
 

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Rest in peace, Coach
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9,106 Posts
Run to another dealership as fast as you can. This service department sounds SHADY and I will not trust them to do ANY work.

On all the BMWs I've ever owned, they've always honored my request for free oil change within 500 miles of the indicator, or yellow light coming on. I've NEVER ever heard of this sort of hassle for a simple oil change, after the car has been sold for more than a year AND so damn close to the indicated oil change mileage.

Please post this dealership's name so the rest of the board members can avoid them.
 

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Head-In-Sand Dumbass
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2,192 Posts
I agree, it's ridiculous that they're making you jump through hoops to get your freakin oil changed. I got mine done at around 13,600 or so, my car had neither been had for a year nor did I hit 15,000 miles... but the service indicator was yellow and it said I needed to get it done! I was actually at like -200 miles or so according to the indicator.

Regardless my dealership didn't even flinch when I told them these details. So I'd say hit another dealership up and definitely let us know which one is f-ing around with you right now...
 

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Flying monkey herder
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8,180 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
Well, i just got my car back.
the SA called at about 3pm, said it would be ready at 3:30
i get there, car hasnt been inspected yet. looking out the window, my car is sitting in the lot. SA says give them a few minutes, and banishes me to the lounge. 45 minutes later, they get the car back into the shop for inspection.
15 minutes later the service manager comes out to see me. Expecting an apology of some sort, i'm a little shocked when all he wants is the 10 bucks for the NYS inspection. i dont get any of the repair orders, etc, he says they'll mail them to me. i hand him a ten and he walks off. SA goes to get the car, i check to see if the work is done (later i find out they turned off my autolock at 5mph when they were mucking around my car memory options :banghead: ) car has greasy arm prints all over the place, etc

he 'scolds' me for having aftermarket brake pads (he backs off when I ask him if they are a problem, he says no, not really)

the kicker?
"they'll be giving you a call, we'd really appreciate it if you gave nothing lower than excellent" all i did was say "i guess the job got done" :flipoff:

while nosing around under the hood, noticed the microfilter was put in backward, the frame cracked.

The purveyors of this day of fun and ulcers?
Life Quality BMW of Brooklyn

stay far far away.
anyone from NYC know of a good service dept?
i'm thinking about BMW of Manhattan, Bayside BMW or Circle BMW in NJ for next time...

Q: should my inspection countdown be at 15,725K miles? i thought it was 15K intervals?
and i'm not sure how, but my 1 year NYS inspection is coming up in 13 months. Yup, it expires 10/24/03 (i have no idea if this is normal for NYS)
i might be paranoid, but i get this weird feeling that they might be trying to make sure this doesnt happen again next year...
 

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Orient330iNYC said:
anyone from NYC know of a good service dept?
i'm thinking about BMW of Manhattan, Bayside BMW or Circle BMW in NJ for next time...
I've had great experiences with Park Ave BMW in Maywood, NJ and Wide World of Cars in Spring Valley, NY.

I would say Park Ave would get my wholehearted recommendation.

I couldn't really recommend BMW of Manhattan... they don't return calls, and they are severely overbooked. Maybe they're ok once you get an appointment, but I have yet to be able to schedule one.
 

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Alee-

Where did you get your NYS inspection done?

Orient-

I've experienced nothing but terrible service from several dealerships in the NY/NJ area. I haven't tired Park Ave BMW in maywood though-- or JMK --they're supposed to be good.

I too have fantasies of trying to resolve all of my service needs in 1 day next Monday:
-fix sticky pedal
-do NYS inspection
-do first oil service

My NYS inspection is actually already lapsed, the dealer didn't have the replacement pedal in time for my original appointment. They've had the replacement on order for about 4 weeks now and can't seem to get it-i call them almost every day to get the status.

Despite my best efforts, I know that its a complete fantasy to be able to take my car in to a BMW dealer and actually have everything handled properly in 1 day. But, I'm going to try...

Sucks about your experience-- welcome to the club. I think its funny when people on this board say things like "run far away from that dealer". Maybe you can have that luxury in other parts of the country, but in NY/NJ/CT, they all seem to suck pretty badly. All the dealers I've been to have done something (often several times) to make me "run far away". :banghead:

It also seems like the dealers svc departments do everything in their power to not work on or fix the car the first time you bring it in. As an added bonus, they will:
-never have any parts in stock (excepts lots of overpriced BMW clothing of course)
-if you've ordered a part, they will tell you its in and then not be able to find it when you actually arrive.
I don't know why its advantageous for them to have someone bring in their car and then have to take it back another day to actually have the work done. It must be a great business idea, because they all seem to do it.

Dealing w/ most BMW dealers (and to a lesser extent most car dealers) is kind of like living in bizarro-land. If doing something would be logical, good customer service, good workmanship and/or helpful you can be guaranteed that it will be done in the opposite way. I sometimes think that dealerships have to put real effort and thought into being as bad as they generally are. I don't know if behaving in the way they do would occur to me without thinking about how I could really piss off customers.

I've never or rarely had dealer:
-call me back
-do work on time
-do work correctly the first or 2nd time
-be courteous
-do warranty work without protest
-know what they're talking about
-be capable of correctly ordering parts (yes, I know that's really complicated).

Its pretty damn amazing. :dunno:

FWIW, BMW has done a great job of ensuring that the second another car company comes out w/ a truly competitive product, I'll switch in a second.
 

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Flying monkey herder
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8,180 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I suspect they bill BMW NA for both the diagnostic visit and the installation visit.
when i picked up my car the first time last year, i noticed the headlight trim was black, not Titanium... didnt really care, but my sales manager told me to bring it in for them to "assess" the issue and that i would have to bring it back another day to get it fixed. its not like i have a weird 330i that has unique trim, i'm sure the ETK has the part number, my guess is they try to maximize the billable visits..
</conspiracytheory>

the only silver lining to this dealer was my salesman (who quit in the weeks between my order and delivery) he actually came in on my delivery date ( a saturday when he was no longer an employee of the dealership) to do the delivery and go over the car with me. that was service. he responded the same day to emails or phonecalls. He moved on to the Mercedes-Benz dealership here in brooklyn, Soveriegn Mercedes Benz. I'm probably going to steer my dad to him for an S class when the lease on his Volvo S80 is up. the volvo dealer is only marginally better than my dealer. grumble.

the cars are great. after sales support, to put it ineloquently, sucks.

:confused:
 

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Orient, sorry to hear about your agita. As you know, service in the NYC Metro area is tough. So far for me, Rallye Motors in Roslyn has been pretty good. The only problem with them is the wait time to schedule an appointment. My "service engine soon" light came on over the weekend. The odometer says I have about 1100 miles to go. They said they are up to the end of October for appointments unless I wanted to schedule an overnight. Then they would be able to get me in sooner.
 

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robg said:
Where did you get your NYS inspection done?
Wide World of Cars in Spring Valley, NY. It was about a 30 minute drive on the Palisades but worth it. They had me in and out quickly (under 1 hr) for NYS Inspection and attaching my front plate. Ask for an early AM waiting appointment.
 

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Flying monkey herder
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8,180 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
my first inclination is to burn them on the survey...(which is anything lower than excellent)
but conceivably, I might need them one day, and burning them now will get me blacklisted ( they get the results of bad surveys, along with customer names).
OTOH, i'll probably be fantastically ill for days if i tell the surveyor they did excellent work....:banghead:

from what i've heard from good sources, Rallye and BMW of manhattan are the best in terms of service in the metro NY area (go figure, they're always booked solid)
 

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I could second Big Al's recommendation about Rallye Motors . .. they really take the time to make sure what you want is fixed correctly . . . I keep trying to get Rob g to go to them but it's too far of a drive for him . . .

If you decide to go to Rallye, PM me for a great service advisors name to take care of you.
 

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Yikes.

When the time comes, I'm planning on going back up to Cutter for my 15k service... I'm already at 10k. I figure it will be in November or December.

I too am hoping to have a short laundry list of things fixed at that time... maybe a call to Jon ahead of time will help me actually get it all taken care of quickly.

My list so far:

- Sticky pedal
- Passenger mirror auto-tilt wacky behavior
- Plastic housing for windshield sensor (for auto-wipers) keeps falling apart
- B-Pillar rattle (though this seems to have disappeared for the last week or so)

I'm really hoping these things, plus my Oil service I, can be taken care of in a day... unfortunately, Cutter doesn't provide free loaners. Just a discount rental. And I'm going to have to get up at 4am or something to get up to Santa Barbara and still make it to work. :(
 

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alee said:

Wide World of Cars in Spring Valley, NY. It was about a 30 minute drive on the Palisades but worth it. They had me in and out quickly (under 1 hr) for NYS Inspection and attaching my front plate. Ask for an early AM waiting appointment.
That's a beautiful drive though... gorgeous country up there. Especially if you go further north, over Bear Mt. bridge, up to Cold Spring...
 

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Rest in peace, Coach
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Orient330iNYC said:
my first inclination is to burn them on the survey...(which is anything lower than excellent)
but conceivably, I might need them one day, and burning them now will get me blacklisted ( they get the results of bad surveys, along with customer names).
OTOH, i'll probably be fantastically ill for days if i tell the surveyor they did excellent work....:banghead:

from what i've heard from good sources, Rallye and BMW of manhattan are the best in terms of service in the metro NY area (go figure, they're always booked solid)
Ding them on the survey and NEVER go back to that dealership ever again. What they try to pull, trying to withold oil service is BULL.
 

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Hi
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Plaz said:


I'm really hoping these things, plus my Oil service I, can be taken care of in a day... unfortunately, Cutter doesn't provide free loaners. Just a discount rental. And I'm going to have to get up at 4am or something to get up to Santa Barbara and still make it to work. :(
Plaz,

Call Chris at Center BMW, (818) 907-9995, and tell him I referred you. He is an awesome service advisor. If you call a week or 10 days in advance, he will get you in a loaner car. :thumbup: Their service department is very good, just make sure either Dave or Jack, who are both shop foremen, oversee any special work on your car. Chris will make sure to assign your car to one of their better technicians.

Later.
 

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I'd ding them on the survey. I did this to my dealer on my first service visit, and explained to the service manager as to why they were going to get dinged. Since then, they've gone out of their way to make sure my service visits go well.

Orient330iNYC said:
my first inclination is to burn them on the survey...(which is anything lower than excellent)
but conceivably, I might need them one day, and burning them now will get me blacklisted ( they get the results of bad surveys, along with customer names).
OTOH, i'll probably be fantastically ill for days if i tell the surveyor they did excellent work....:banghead:

from what i've heard from good sources, Rallye and BMW of manhattan are the best in terms of service in the metro NY area (go figure, they're always booked solid)
 

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Plaz said:
That's a beautiful drive though... gorgeous country up there. Especially if you go further north, over Bear Mt. bridge, up to Cold Spring...
Definitely a gorgeous highway and in pretty good condition, but recently I've been seeing way too much police activity to have any fun. :(
 

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alee said:

Definitely a gorgeous highway and in pretty good condition, but recently I've been seeing way too much police activity to have any fun. :(
Well, in that case you've gotta define "fun" Al... I'm sure you'll always be fine regardless of how much police activity there might be on any given road... :rolleyes:

J/K Al. How's it going? It's been awhile since the last time we chatted...
 
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