Fowler Chrysler, Jeep, Dodge, Ram…
After having a bad experience at another Ram dealership, I decided to take my 2014 ¾ ton RAM to Fowler on I-240 service road for standard service and recall upgrades etc.
My first experience with them was through a simple oil change at which time they informed me of a recall. Unlike the last dealer I had taken my truck to, when I went to pick it up the price was exactly what they had quoted me… WOW! Impressive!
The next time I took it in was for a check engine light which they informed me was due to another recall and by-the-way there was another recall on the computer, would I like them to take care of it too. Something to do with the steering, nice people. While in their custody they, for whatever reason. took it off the property and busted a tire in the process. Hmmm! The service tech and I talked at length about the remedy to a rather complicated situation… the tires on the truck were out of production so they wanted to replace one tire with another brand leaving me with three worn tires of one brand and tread pattern and one new of entirely different brand etc. I could not agree to this so we hashed it out… I buy three tires of my choice and they buy the fourth. They mount and balance them and agree to give me free rotation and balance and road-hazard warranty on all four. After doing the math and seeing a new set of Michelin 10-ply AT tires for a little over $700 I agreed… Sounds great huh? Keep reading.
At a later point in time, my truck still under 36K miles I have a problem with my exhaust system so back to Fowler I go. This time they tell me that the problem is not covered under warranty, that it’s a “wear-and-tear” thing and after much conversation with the service department they determined that if they did the repair, er… ah… service, it was going to cost me between $1500 and $1700. Not wanting to give in and shell out that kind of money on a still new truck I call a friend who calls a friend who is the service manager at another Ram dealership several miles across town… turns out the problem was covered by warranty and didn’t cost me a dime all I had to do was deliver it and pick it up, an hour each way.
Oil change time again… I don’t want to drive an hour wait two hours then drive an hour back so I reluctantly went back to Fowler. This time the encounter wasn’t so sweet. Oil change and fuel filters equaled over $500. Oh, and that free tire rotation and balance cost me $49.
Lesson learned not intending to ever go back…
Yesterday I ran over a piece of a battleship left in the middle of the road and ruined a tire… back to Fouler.
After an hour and a half of them running around like blind chickens trying to figure out “Where those tires came from” and “How they got on my truck” I was confronted by their service manager. In his best well… not sure if it was an attempt at an MMA stare-down or superhero stance, which I did glance behind him to see where his cape was, he glared at me and told me they weren’t going to replace my tire. They would patch the hole and put it back on the truck and all I would owe them was $27 (I think or maybe it was $29) but he wasn’t sure “where those tires came from”.
“xxxxxxxx” slipped out of my mouth before I realized it.
Squaring off like he was about to whip my a.. Millennial Steve with his Lumberjack wanna-be beard said, “You have no warranty on those tires”. “is there anything else we can do for you”? And me, with my mouth which engages before my brain on occasions like this said, “yes there is”. Lumberjack Steve musters all the intimidation he had left in his body and “what’s that” launched through the beard like a snake’s hiss… to which I promptly replied “Kiss my a..”
Yes, I know I was wrong… yes, I immediately regretted saying it because it took all the intellect out of my argument but old habits die hard. Millennial Steve turned to his worker and instructed him to throw my tire and wheel into the back of my truck and park it around front.
After a conversation with both the General Manager and the Corporate Service Manager I left the location with the feeling that I had been royally… well you know. BTW the General Manager, Mike, was the only person in the dealership that showed the smallest amount of compassion or understanding however it was a service matter and intervening over the authority of the Corporate Service Manager would not be keeping with good continuity.
I could not believe that Millennial Steve, (someone give the man a cape, please), and the Corporate Service Manager both refused to acknowledge that they sold me the tires and mounted them on my truck.
No, I wasn’t born yesterday nor did I fall from any turnip truck. I grew up with a stepfather that fronted for the biggest independent transmission shop in OKC. I watched him sell transmission jobs for enormous amounts of money then adjust the linkage or maybe even the carburetor then tell the customer he had a rebuilt transmission. I know it’s a sell-all-you-can industry. All I wanted was someone to shoot straight with me and what I got was:
1. My tire ruined by them
2. Sold a bill of goods
3. Attempted to steal $15/1700 dollars from me for warranty work
4. Jacked on my bill-of-goods not once but twice
5. Treated like they really couldn’t care one way or the other
Oh… and here is the best part, the tire they were going to “patch” and put back on my truck for me to drive on, I took it to a reputable tire dealership to have it fixed. The manager there didn’t just tell me but showed me where the metal had gone through the tire was not only too large a hole to patch but also had cut the steel belts making the tire irreparable. If Fouler had put me back on the road with that tire it could have easily blown on me at highway speeds.
6. Willingness to risk my life for their own profit
The tire dealership prorated the Michelin tire and mounted a new one for me for far less than full price and then for a small fee gave me lifetime rotation and balance and road hazard warranty on the other three…