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Took car into a repair shop, ended up with a car not starting at all.

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ajsandiego

Junior Member
What is the name of your state? I live in California

I contacted several local auto repair services and two of the replied. To give you a background, about a week ago, my car started stuttering, and was beginning to take longer to start, usually no more than a half minute if even that. I took it to Pep Boys, they checked the battery, starter, and alternator. They said the battery was going dead and they would cause the delay in cranking the car.

I had the battery replaced, but it was still taking a few seconds longer to start. Then I went to O'reilly's Auto, they did a test and said that it needed a tune up because the cyclinders were misfiring.

So out of the two replies, they both said they needed to do a diagnostic before determining how much it was going to cost, depending on how far they have to go to replace the spark plugs, wires, and other items.

The next day I took it to Thao's auto (which have been around for a long time). When I pulled the car in, the guy that greeted me told me to turn the car off then restart it. Of course it took about a quarter of a minute to restart. I told him that I got the quote for a disgnostic because I needed a tune up.. I also told him that I just had the battery replaced, had the starter and alternator tested. So he said leave the keys and he would do the testing, then let me know what needed to be done, and how much it cost.

He said it would be a few hours. No sooner I got home, he called and said it was the starter, and that it would cost $350. It's an older car and I also told him that I didn't want to spend too much on the car, but just get the car to run for a little while longer until I can get another.

After I asked him again if that was the problem, he said yes, so I told him to do the work.
A few hours later I got the call to pick up the car. When I got there the woman at the cashier called me over and told me that it was $362 and some change. I had to use two credit cards to pay it, but then I got the key. When I went over to get inside, she comes to the car, and asked me to open up the hood. I thought this was kind of strange, but I opened up the hood, and another mechanic came over. She said to start the car, which I did, but this time the car wouldn't start. I cranked it, and cranked it, and it wouldn't start.

I couldn't believe it, so she said they will take a look at it, put in over in the bay, did some things, they got it to start, but it only ran for a minute then shut down. She said that there was engine problems and it wasn't firing, I argued with her to say that I brought it in for the tune up. Then she said, it could be the fuel pump, then there was watere in the oil, and all that would cost more than the car was worth. I told her I couldn't believe they did that to me, by taking my money knowing the car wouldn't start. I also told her that when I brought it in, it was running, and starting. She then said she would refund me the amount I paid except the diagnostic fee, then while I was trying to get that taken card of, the mechanic decided to take the new starter out and placed (my old starter) which I can't be sure it was mine. No not only will the car not start, it's making that click click click noise that comes along with a bad starter. I could get anyone to tow the car, so I just came home to find out what my options are.
I asked for a copy of the diagnostic to find out what it reported. I couldn't believe they didn't see any other problems from the diagnostic report.

Now I am out of $65, and have a car that doesn't run. It's a 2004 Chevy Cavalier, and I know it's an old car with 77,000 miles on, and that's why I didn't want to pay too much, just to keep it going for a little while longer.

What can I do?
 


ajsandiego

Junior Member
I want to get my car running, but I don't know for sure what they actually did to it, because I can't get it to start. Should I seek out another mechanic then have the car towed there. Like I said, when I brought it in to the auto shop it at least started and ran, even though it took a little longer to crank over, but now it won't even turn over.
 

quincy

Senior Member
I want to get my car running, but I don't know for sure what they actually did to it, because I can't get it to start. Should I seek out another mechanic then have the car towed there. Like I said, when I brought it in to the auto shop it at least started and ran, even though it took a little longer to crank over, but now it won't even turn over.
Do you have a mechanic that you trust? Going from one auto shop to another doesn’t seem to be working out well.

From what you describe of your car problems, I probably would have started with a new battery and then an alternator. But apparently your car has additional issues if it can’t even be jump-started.

You could let the current shop work on it some more or have it towed elsewhere. I don’t see that you have any legal action to pursue, though, because the last shop refunded your money (minus the diagnostics).
 

ajsandiego

Junior Member
But the car was starting and running when I took it in, then three hours later it won't even crank over, so something had to have happened during those three hours. They were supposed to fix the problem, not create more problem. I will decide tomorrow when I get up, it's getting late tonight.
 

adjusterjack

Senior Member
But the car was starting and running when I took it in, then three hours later it won't even crank over, so something had to have happened during those three hours. They were supposed to fix the problem, not create more problem
I doubt that they "created" more problems. Cars work until they don't. The symptoms could have been a lot of things and just happened to fail while it was being worked on.

Now I am out of $65, and have a car that doesn't run. It's a 2004 Chevy Cavalier, and I know it's an old car with 77,000 miles on, and that's why I didn't want to pay too much, just to keep it going for a little while longer.

What can I do?
Not much choice. Have it towed to a Chevy dealer. It'll cost you. But the technicians probably know what they are doing.

By the way, never hand over the money until you've checked to make sure the car was actually fixed.
 

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