Yesterday I had an appointment for my car (A 98 Chevy Cavalier) to get an oil change. I took it to the same Garage/Chevy Dealer I've been using since my Freshmen year of college, so they've been working on my car for four years. This is really the first time I've had any problem with them and I'm looking for some advice on what to do, because I'm wondering if I'm more flustered about this than I should be.
I dropped my car off at 11AM, give the garage manager my keys and then head out down the road with a friend for lunch. About half-way threw lunch, the Manager calls me and lets me know they're having trouble opening the hood. My car is well over ten years old now, and there are parts of my car that are in fact, pretty shitty.
To go off topic only momentarily, I took my car to Wal-Mart for an oil change a few years ago and they snapped the pull cord for the hood from inside the car because they pulled the "You're a girl, so you clearly don't know ANYTHING about cars" attitude. I asked them to let the car sit in the garage for a few moments before they tried to open the hood, let it warm up because it'd been sitting out in snow and freezing temperatures for days on end. They didn't listen, snapped the cord and to make a long story short I have a pull-cord on the outside of the car that works pretty well for my purposes. Oddly enough, this is the story that prompted me to seek out a mechanic in my new town.
Anyway, I'm trying to be nice about it because I haven't dealt with this particular Manager before. I mentioned there's a pull cord outside, and he cuts me off saying that they tried it and it won't work; but for $218 dollars they'll gladly fix it for me. I called bullshit, I had opened the hood the week before to check the anti-freeze in the car. I mentioned that I would gladly run back down the road to the garage and open the hood for them, but if it was going to be a problem to not do anything to my car and I'll come get it, and take it elsewhere. We get off the phone, and by now I'm a bit annoyed because I felt I was slightly talked down too because, once again, I'm a woman and I looked like easy prey. But I really was trying to give them the benefit of the doubt and just assume something was wrong with the pull-cord. Until they called me back less than ten minutes later, and magically, the hood was open.
After the call, I didn't hear from them again and went about my afternoon chore-list with a friend. I went to a hair appointment, did some Christmas shopping, and waited and waited some more-- no call on the progress of the car-- which is really abnormal for them. After getting nervous about them doing something to my car without my consent, I finally ask my friend to drive me back to the garage so I can ask what's up, and get my car if it's finished. Interestingly enough, as I pull into the garage they're closed. I get out of my friends car, and look to see if they'd at least changed the oil and while they did that-- they'd neglected to call me before they closed. Was I supposed to psychically sense that my car was done? As I was walking out the door they didn't say "Hey, your car should be done around such and such a time!" So I awaited a phone call, the same way we've been doing business for four years.
This pissed me off so much because I'm an In-home care giver, my car = my income. I took Saturday off specifically to get my oil changed, and didn't think a supposed 'Twenty four hour Service Garage' would close for some random reason by five on a Saturday, and lost hours at work today which I really cannot afford to begin with. And foolishly enough, I let them keep my whole lanyard of keys. Thankfully I was smart enough to at least grab my apartment key or I don't know where the hell I would've slept last night.
So this poses the question, what should I do? I'm contemplating letting the hood incident slide because maybe this new Manager truly didn't know; but I am really pissed off that he neglected to place a twenty-second phone call to me and somehow feel the two incidents may be connected. I've had pretty good service there otherwise; but I can't help but think that if I were a new customer, who'd never been there before-- that I wouldn't go back.
Anyway, advice is welcomed.