Thursday, June 2, 2011

How do I get a "quick lube shop" to repair an oil leak I suspect they caused?

Short story: I think a quick lube shop stripped my oil pan after an oil change, and now I want them to replace the pan on their own dime. They're currently giving me the run-around.

Long story:

In early August, I went to one of those quick lube shops (like EZ Lube or Jiffy Lube) for an oil change. This was on a Friday. The following Monday, I noticed a puddle of oil underneath my car.

I brought my car back to the same shop and told them that I suspected they caused the oil leak. According to them, the cause of the leak was a stripped oil pan caused by typical wear and tear. However, for no charge, they said they'd re-strip the oil pan for me.

After they supposedly re-stripped the oil pan, I brought my car to two other mechanics to get their opinion of the oil leak. Both concurred that the oil pan was stripped, but it wasn't because of wear and tear - it was because someone applied too much torque when reapplying the plug.

In addition, I found out that the folks at the quick lube shop %26quot;fixed%26quot; the oil leak by applying silicon to the plug. One of the mechanics said that the silicon is a temporary patch that may last me months, years, or just days. The car would start to leak oil again sooner or later, and replacing the oil pan is the only permanent fix. The estimated cost to replace my oil pan is about $500.

I now want this quick lube shop to give me the name of one of their %26quot;associated mechanics%26quot; and replace my oil pan for me at no additional charge. When I asked the shop's manager to give me a list of names of %26quot;associated mechanics%26quot;, he gave me the run-around: I'd have to fill a claim, I'd have to bring the car back to the shop so he personally can inspect it and ensure that it was, indeed, his workers' fault that the oil pan was stripped...

How good are my chances? What steps can I expect to take? Should I talk with the manager of the shop, or go up the chain to their corporate customer service? Or should I just pony up the $500 myself and forget about this?

Thanks in advance for any information.How do I get a %26quot;quick lube shop%26quot; to repair an oil leak I suspect they caused?
To begin with the %26quot;Stripped pan bolt%26quot; is an old trick. I have no doubt that it is stripped as I have had two Quick lube places %26quot;Discover%26quot; stripped pan bolts on two of my own vehicles. (I used to build Funny Car Engines so I am fairly adept at vehicle maintenance) Normally they pull this scam when my wife (who is more mechanically inclined than most lube shop jockeys) takes the car in. Normally they approach with it was like that before we did anything....... My wife has taken the approach that she tells them that I am a mechanic up front and that has stopped the BS. Now on to your delima. Most of the auto parts stores like Autozone or Advance etc. carry a tool to rethread the oilpan drain plug. I would also recommend that you demand to the corporate customer service reps. that they %26quot;PAY FOR%26quot; your vehicle to be repaired however I would not allow them to make the repair themselves. The kit to rethread the oil pan is between 15 and 30 dollars and they will probably want to say it costs 50 - 100 or more and with your current experience do you really want them %26quot;inside%26quot; of your engine. We have had good luck pressuring the Corporate people to make amends more so than the clowns in the shops. By the way we now go to a %26quot;quicky lube%26quot; place that knows both me and my wife by name and they know that I will not take part in their scam. I have even had a Mr. Tire location try to pull the stripped drain bolt ..... until I walked up and put another pan bolt in the pan while they stood there with their mouth hanging open.How do I get a %26quot;quick lube shop%26quot; to repair an oil leak I suspect they caused?
Keep on them, and don't let up. Get the mechanics you have taken it to to put their findings in writing. If the quick lube place continues to give you the run around, call a lawyer. Usually one letter from a lawyer is enough to get places like that to pony up. How do I get a %26quot;quick lube shop%26quot; to repair an oil leak I suspect they caused?
Good question. First off, unless that was your first oil change, you dont have much of a case. The plug has been in and out plenty of times and the threads get weaker and weaker each oil change. If you were in my shop and that happened, I would have walked you out after we removed the drain plug and showed you the threads. In any case, for customer satisfaction, I would install a two piece self tapping drain plug. No way do you need to replace the pan. The two piece drain plug has one end that self threads into the pan and never comes out again, the other end has a small bolt that gets removed for future oil changes. We have used this alot and never had any problems.How do I get a %26quot;quick lube shop%26quot; to repair an oil leak I suspect they caused?
very very good, contact there corporate office and ask to speak to a supervisor and state your case, Don't talk to a drone! talk to a supervisor, that work's 99% of the time if not what's your deductible on your insurance, I use AAA and if I filed a claim they'd be on them like a pit bull on a pork chop! I also have a 54 chevy that has the original drain plug and it doesn't leak, but then again I do my own service cause I don't trust morons working on any of my vehicles