I have a 2003 Honda CR-V and my mother has a 2006 Honda Pilot. My mother purchased the Pilot from Della Honda in Plattsburgh and has had it serviced there many times because of the warranty. The fact that we were repeat customers may come as a shock after reading how the service department at Della Honda treated my mother and me.
On Thanksgiving I was at a red light and when the light turned green I pushed the gas and I heard a pop from the front end. My 2003 Honda CR-V had broken and my first thought was, “I need to go to a Honda dealer because they will fix my car correctly.” I wish I had known then what was about to unfold.
First visit: The car was towed to Della Honda in Plattsburgh, NY. The service man, Phil, said that the car would be fixed for around $200-$300 and that it would be, “good as new.” I needed my CV-Shaft changed, which I already knew. I went to pick the car up the next day just before they closed (2pm on a Saturday). My mother and I paid for the repairs and got in the car to go home. When I pulled out of the parking lot, I felt the steering wheel and the gas pedal wobble and shake as I gave the car gas. I planned to return to the dealership on the following Monday because my car did not shake before it was brought to Della Honda.
Second visit: On that following Monday, I brought my car back to Della Honda because I was not satisfied with their service. I left the car at the dealership and went to class so that they could find the source of the shaking. I later received a phone call from a man from Della Honda who was very concerned about me driving the CR-V home because of the “terrible shaking.” He wanted me to leave the car there overnight because it was not safe to drive an hour away. He told me that the other side of my axle had broken and they did not realize that before. They thought that only one side had broken. When I asked him how much it would be to fix the car, he told me to call back the next day to get the total. That made me nervous. The next day, when I called to find out the price, I was told it would cost $800 to fix my front end because they could not get the part for the other side aftermarket, so the part alone costs $425. I trusted them and thought that I needed it, especially because the man on the phone the previous day acted like the car was not safe. My mother helped me financially and we agreed to have the repairs done. We were desperate because I commute an hour each way to school and I need a reliable car. I had class that day until after Della Honda closed, so my mother paid over the phone and I went to pick the car up that night. The car still had that familiar shake and it was exactly the same as it was before my mother spent another $800 to have that exact problem fixed.
Third visit: The next morning, I went straight to Della Honda. Phil was somewhat ready for me to walk through the doors, but he did not have his story straight. Phil told me that there was nothing wrong with my front end and that the shaking was coming from the back of the vehicle. (The steering wheel and the gas pedal were shaking which indicates front end trouble). Phil told me that my drive shaft needed to be replaced which was going to cost me another $600 to fix! He argued with me as if he himself had worked on my car. I said, “I want to speak with the mechanic who worked on my car.” When the mechanic came out, I asked him to take a ride with me so that he could feel that the shaking was coming from the front end. During the ride, the mechanic told me that he had a doctor appointment the day before and had to leave early from work. As a result, he never had a chance to finish with my car so that he could determine for sure whether or not it was the drive shaft. I was not happy at all. I left the car there yet again and told them to figure it out. Later that day, I received another call from Phil. He told me that the drive shaft still needs to be changed, but that is not the immediate problem. He said that the shaking was from the transaxle. He said that a brand-new transaxle is around $3,500, but they would sell us a used one with 80,000 miles on it for $1,800 and charge us another $600 to put it in! Have you ever heard of such a thing?
I went to Della Honda to have my front end fixed and they charged me $1,100 and tried to charge me another $2,400 and all they did was give me a new problem. Not long before this incident, they told my mother that she needed new breaks on her Honda Pilot before Christmas, and it was going to cost her $1000! I think the people of the area have a right to hear this story because Della Honda is not the place to go. The general manager, Tom Gilbert, says on their advertisement about Della Honda, “ . . .where we get it done for you.” They got nothing done for me except mess up my car and charge me outrageous amounts of money. Stay far away from that place!
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