My John Hinderer Honda Experience
I feel that with all that has happened to truly express all my disappointment and frustration that I must start at the absolute beginning.
I had been in the market for a new (used) car for a few weeks. I had done a ll the research and asking around and had decided that I wanted a Buick Regal. I was just waiting for that right one to come along. Then on the day before Thanksgiving I received an alert that there was a car available that fit all my criteria. Low Miles, One Owner, and best of all my favorite color!
I immediately called and spoke with a sales person and was on my way out the door.
The dealership that the car was located at, John Hinderer Honda, was located about 25 miles from my home. This was a little further than I really wanted to go but this car was the one I had been waiting for!
The overall sales experience was pretty much as to be expected. However the financing representative left much to be desired.
I arrived at the dealership already pre-approved for financing. Yet they had me apply for financing through the dealership anyway. When they came back to discuss the terms and options there was no discussion at all. I was presented with a scrap piece of paper with handwriting on it. There were only three options, all of which were much to high for me to afford. I had already explained to the salesperson what terms were acceptable for me to be able to stay within my budget. These had been completely ignored.
In all honesty I believe that because I am a younger single woman that they felt it would be possible to take advantage of me. Or it could be that the finance rep was simply to lazy to shop around for better loan terms. Whatever the case was they quickly realized that if they could not work with me that I would not be bullied into a sale.
While the sale was being finalized the salesperson said that the vehicle was being taken back to the detail department for a final cleaning. He also took the time to explain about the Gold Check Certification that the vehicle had undergone. Including a rigorous 125point inspection.
And now finally the moment has arrived. I have my dream car and Happy Days are here! Alas, the story has only just begun.
About 2 weeks had passed since purchasing the car and I really was very satisfied with the car and the experience at that point.
Then I went to leave work one day and the car would not start! Dead Battery. Not covered under 90 day warranty. $100! Okay so their rigorous 125 point inspection my not have been so rigorous.
Whatever just chalk it up to life happens and go on. Still pretty satisfied with the overall experience just with a bad taste.
Another 2 weeks or so go by and I'm out running errands and the car starts dinging and going crazy: engine overheated. Seriously! At this point I am completely convinced that John Hinderer Honda's Gold Check Certification is a total joke. And nothing more than a wash was done to my car. I have serius doubts if it was ever Detailed at all, let alone a second time as I was told when I purchased it.
I Immediately called the dealership to speak with the salesperson. Explained the issue and asked if it can be towed back to the dealership. 25 miles is quite a way with an overheating engine. I didn't want to do any damage.
I was told no. Sorry bout your luck. Limp it in the best you can and we will look at it.
Well it just happened to be that the next day was Christmas eve. So here I am on Christmas eve trying to get my car back to the dealership to get repaired.
I had to pull over 4 separate times to allow the car to cool down before continuing my journey. This is exactly how I wanted to start my holiday!
After arriving to the dealership my vehicle was taken back and looked at. I asked that the brakes be checked as well because I had noticed some grinding noises.
After about and hour and half wait I was told that nothing could be found wrong with the vehicle. The technician could not get the car to duplicate my complaint.
I was utterly astonished that this man had the nerve to look me in the eye and tell me that nothing was wrong with my car. He actually said to me, and I quote “Its not that we just don't want to do the work on it because it under warranty. We really cant get it to overheat”.
Could not get it to overheat! I didn't believe it and I was determined to prove him wrong. The car had been overheating for 2 days! Every time I tried to drive it!
So after I was given the vehicle back I drove around Heath for about an hour wasting at least a 1/4 tank of gas and my time. I was not about to get half way home and have to come right back for an overheated engine!
But to my amazement, no. Nothing! The temperature gauge didn't budge a smidgen from its normal range.
I was convinced something had to have been done to the car. How else did it go from overheating to just, not!? Turns out at least one thing was for sure done. The brakes were checked. I know this because two days after Christmas I found one of my lugnuts lying in my driveway from the technician failing to tighten it correctly.
On what I thought was a completely unrelated issue I had been having an extremely hard time with the windows inside the car fogging up. I had tried every possible setting with the defrost, air and heat settings and nothing seemed to work. It had gotten so bad that I would have to ride with the windows down to be able to see!
I joined a Buick owners forum to try and get help with a solution. Among lots of other ideas I was told to check for any dampness or wetness inside the car. In the floorboards or the truck area.
Eureka! There was a small puddle of what appeared to be water in the driver floorboard. After further inspection I realized that it was radiator fluid!
Turns out after discussing this further with my forum friends that the heater core is most likly busted and leaking radiator fluid into my car. Which is in turn causing the fogging issue!
So looking back on it I realize that when I initially took the car in to be serviced for overheating that the reason the technician could not duplicate the complaint was because they filled up the coolant before the test.
With the amount of coolant that they had to have put into the car the technician should have realized that there was an underlying issue for that much fluid to have leaked out.
And the service writer who stated to me “ Its not that we just don't want to do the work on it because it under warranty. We really cant get it to overheat” was probably right on the money.
Whether it was because it was the holidays and the mechanics didn't want to do the work or because it was under warranty I feel that there was no attention paid to my vechile. It was not properly serviced either before or after the purchase. If you don't want to work on cars other than Hondas then don't sell em. John Hinderer Honda really dropped the ball on this one.
And to top off the cake with an enormous helping of icing . . . . . the limited warranty that came with the vechile does not cover this particular part. And the dealership will not fix the car. Another $300 out of my pocket that still has 30 day tags!!!!
I am disappointed in the level of all around service I have received from a dealership that is supposedly know for it outstanding service. Not one person I have spoken with about these issues TRULY seem to care. It seems as if I'm just another issue to deal with..
My time and money are worth much more than the value that this dealership seems to have put on them.