The writer of “Vetoing the adviser” (April), a former Ford Motor Co. engineer, apparently has no idea of how things work in a dealership service department, especially when warranty repairs are involved.
Under no circumstances can a service adviser and technician accept a customer’s self-diagnosis of a problem and the required repair.
The customer is not paying for the repair; he is asking the manufacturer to do so. If he is wrong, the dealer will not ask him to pay for it. The dealer eats the cost. The manufacturer wants all the diagnostic information gathered by the technician to verify that the part in question failed.
The writer spent several hours, perhaps days, to determine the “potential” cause of his concern — one that was very minor and not causing any driveability issues.
The poor technician is allocated only so much time to verify the exact cause of the failure, document his or her findings and complete the repair. In this case, there was no actual hard failure, just a momentary malfunction of a thermostat.
Engineers make terrible service customers.
WENDELL ALLEN, Houston. The writer is a recruiter of service technicians for Texas new-vehicle dealerships.
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