: Convenient Warranty Service Mkaes a Difference!



orconn
05-15-09, 02:11 PM
I don't know about most folks, but I suspect it is part of the decision making process, but easy access to warranty service of a new car is a definite concern when buying a new car. I know I have considered how far dealer service is from where my home or office is located in the decision to buy a certain make car. This was particularly true of the "business" cars my wife and I have had over the years.

While living in Los Angeles this was less important, as most brands were well represented around the city. But after moving to Northern Virginia and then to Richmond in Central Virginia I am much more sensitive to the issue. I would definitely think twice about buying a car, and especially a new car, that was inconvenient to have serviced.

dkozloski
05-15-09, 02:32 PM
I have to drive over 1800 miles to find a competent Cadillac dealership and that's assuming there is one in Seattle, Washington. Some people have no idea how well off they are.

Gristle Boy
05-15-09, 05:22 PM
I agree. My last car was a G35 & closest dealer was 450 miles away. It was a great car but not having local service sucked balls.
Besides, my CTS rawks!

Night Wolf
05-15-09, 08:38 PM
I haven't had a problem when it comes to finding a place to repair my vehicles, they are all serviced in my driveway. It's cheaper, more convenient, plus the work gets done correctly. Service/parts is one of the last considerations for me when it comes to picking out a vehicle.

I~LUV~Caddys8792
05-15-09, 08:48 PM
Rick, have you had a lot of bad experience with dealerships?

One of the major reasons I buy a certain car is how easy it is to work on. Well it is now, but it wasn't always that way. I could have cared less with the DeVille and S Class, but after seeing the trouble my uncle went through to get diagnostic/repair work done on the Cadillac, and the insane repair bills on the S Class, I've decided to buy something mainstream, simple and cheap! So considering the vehicular demographics in my part of the country (mainly mid-level domestic, but a lot of mainstream Japanese cars too) it's a lot easier to get parts and good service for those types of cars. Places that specialize in European cars are somewhat abundant in the metropolitan area, but if I was to ever move out to a small town (like I want to) I'd have to either drive way out of the way to get a European car serviced, or buy domestic.


But yeah, a close distance between dealer and customer is a key ingredient to a good CSI (customer satisfaction) score for the dealer, upon which they are graded and compared with their competition by the manufacturer. Which helps decide who stays open in tough times, and who gets the "cool" cars.

AMGoff
05-15-09, 08:53 PM
I haven't had a problem when it comes to finding a place to repair my vehicles, they are all serviced in my driveway. It's cheaper, more convenient, plus the work gets done correctly. Service/parts is one of the last considerations for me when it comes to picking out a vehicle.

That's completely disregarding the fact that many people have neither the time, patience, nor know-how to do so themselves... In fact, I'd say the vast majority of people - so it makes dealer convenience all the more essential.

Even though I'm perfectly capable of working on my own vehicles and have done so for years, the fact remains that I never, ever do so while a car is under warranty... and I can't think of any possible reason why anyone would do so. It's only cheaper and more convenient when talking about used cars that are bought "as-is" - otherwise it's nothing less than absurd, not to mention completely wasteful for one to opt to do so on their own out of some weird independent/superior/machismo notion...

If I have a contractually obligated guarantee that says someone else will repair my vehicle - I'll be damned if I won't use it to its fullest extent...

RightTurn
05-15-09, 09:20 PM
I haven't had a problem when it comes to finding a place to repair my vehicles, they are all serviced in my driveway. It's cheaper, more convenient, plus the work gets done correctly. Service/parts is one of the last considerations for me when it comes to picking out a vehicle.

Um, the difference is likely that you are buying pre-owned with no warranty. Buyers of new vehicles are not going to work on their own car when they have warranty coverage.

I~LUV~Caddys8792
05-15-09, 09:37 PM
The only reason someone with a brand new warrantied vehicle would work on it themselves if it's not convenient to have the work done at the dealer. There is literally NO other reason.

Night Wolf
05-15-09, 10:28 PM
That's completely disregarding the fact that many people have neither the time, patience, nor know-how to do so themselves... In fact, I'd say the vast majority of people - so it makes dealer convenience all the more essential.

Even though I'm perfectly capable of working on my own vehicles and have done so for years, the fact remains that I never, ever do so while a car is under warranty... and I can't think of any possible reason why anyone would do so. It's only cheaper and more convenient when talking about used cars that are bought "as-is" - otherwise it's nothing less than absurd, not to mention completely wasteful for one to opt to do so on their own out of some weird independent/superior/machismo notion...

If I have a contractually obligated guarantee that says someone else will repair my vehicle - I'll be damned if I won't use it to its fullest extent...


Um, the difference is likely that you are buying pre-owned with no warranty. Buyers of new vehicles are not going to work on their own car when they have warranty coverage.

I should have put in a sarcasm disclaimer. Yes, it was a joke, if there is a new car warante, then there are minimal reasons to work on it yourself.

gdwriter
05-16-09, 05:14 AM
I haven't had a problem when it comes to finding a place to repair my vehicles, they are all serviced in my driveway. It's cheaper, more convenient, plus the work gets done correctly. Service/parts is one of the last considerations for me when it comes to picking out a vehicle.Keep in mind here, folks, Rick is a trained aircraft mechanic. When you work on airliners (old job) or military aircraft (current job), changing out the transmission mounts in an old BMW or pulling out the dash in a Lincoln Town Car is a piece of cake. For us amateur (or worse) driveway mechanics? Not so much.

Cheaper it may very well be. Convenient? Only if you really like spending a day under your car, getting covered in grease and making multiple runs to the auto parts store for one thing or another. And in my case at least, there is no guarantee the work will be done correctly. I'm always a bit shocked when a repair I attempt myself actually works, especially the first time.

That's not to say I cut corners or am intentionally lazy or sloppy. I've got my grease-covered shop manual out there with me blowing in the breeze, but as we all know, things don't always go by the book. The shop manual, for instance, said I had to pull the distributor on Cruella to change out the Hall Effect switch, but I knew with a little patience and an open-end 1/4 wrench, I could get the mounting bolts out and back in. And I did.

I've done some minor repair work on both Betty and Cruella, and when I had to have Betty's engine rebuilt in 2000, I was working right beside my incredibly helpful friend who actually knew what he was doing when we pulled the engine out and put it back in. I was mostly tightening or loosening bolts, handing him wrenches or cleaning parts, but I can honestly say I did at least some of the work rebuilding my engine.

When I open the hood on Sabrina, however, I just shake my head and say, "No." Especially since I have an extended warranty that can be used with any ASE-certified mechanic.

Fortunately, I've found an excellent mechanic (ASE-certified, of course) who I trust completely. He does good work, charges a fair price and doesn't treat me like an idiot because I can usually provide some insight into what's wrong or what needs to be done; I just don't have the tools or the skills to do the actual work.

Besides, my hourly rate as a freelance writer is just under half of my mechanic's rate, so I can easily earn what it takes to pay my mechanic in far less time than it woud take for me to do the repair myself.

I much prefer driving my cars to working on them.

CIWS
05-16-09, 10:46 AM
In two years the dealership landscape is going to be quite different. Speaking personally the availability of a dealership for warranty service is / will be part of the purchasing decision.

dkozloski
05-16-09, 12:50 PM
Unfortunately, none of the local dealers, either Chrysler or GM, got axed. Business is still atrocities as usual.

RightTurn
05-16-09, 04:56 PM
Don't give up hope, Koz. The closings are not over yet.

orconn
05-16-09, 05:03 PM
Unfortunately, none of the local dealers, either Chrysler or GM, got axed. Business is still atrocities as usual.

Perhaps it's time to considered a less sophisticated form of transportation .... ah, but then you've got your Ford pickup to actually get you places!