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Bu Service Shop Tried to Rip Me Off


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Let me apologize in advance for the length of this posting but you need some background info to appreciate the situation.

I bought my 1st Malibu (99 SLXI) toward the end of last season Yahoo.gif and because I was still pretty unfamiliar with the mechanical I decided to do the 100hr service and winterize all at the same time through our local Bu dealer. The guy who ran the shop seemed nice and relatively helpful. His big pitch for the shop was to prepay for the de-winterization at the time of the winterization, so I did. I come in last week for the de-winterization, leave the boat and grab lunch then come back and he shows me what was done. He then hands me a bill for over $200. I ask him what's with the bill. He says the 2 1/2 hrs labour and shop supplies. I absolutely refused to pay and got into a "you said this" type debate with the guy Mad.gif . He completely denied that the prepay is his policy. At the same time he would not look me in the eye and his face turns completely red. After a 5 min. argument he gives in and says he wont fight me for the labour.

Now I'm driving home and he calls me in a panic. His mechanic (of 3+ years) forgot to put the ski locker plug back in the boat. So he gets the mechanic to drive to my place to give me the plug. The mechanic and I are chatting and I ask him about the prepay for de-winterization. Suprise, suprise!!! It's the shop policy. Absolutely everyone prepays. There is more suspicious slimy behavior but you get the point.

1st how can I go back to that shop even if it is the only Bu dealership within 200 miles. Should I blast the dealers name all over to protect others? Would you report the sleeze and to whom?

I don't want other bu owners to get taken by this guy.

I'd love to here your thoughts.

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My advice: Don't trash him on this board OR any other. They all watch these boards.... Even Malibu monitors these boards... Trashing a shop or Malibu Boats has NEVER acomplished anything except driving a wedge between the two parties....

Contact the Owner of the shop first. Trying not to pi$$ him off. He may praise you for bringing a bad (employee) situation up to him. If that does not yield any satisfaction, try Mike Sanchez @ Malibu boats in Merced, CA. Pretty sure it's [email protected] Customer service rep. for Malibu Boats.

BUT remember: this guy who tried to pull a fast on on you is the closest Malibu dealer to you, right???

Keep us posted, but don't use the shop's name, or location.

Good luck. Pat

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My advice: Don't trash him on this board OR any other. They all watch these boards.... Even Malibu monitors these boards... Trashing a shop or Malibu Boats has NEVER acomplished anything except driving a wedge between the two parties....

Contact the Owner of the shop first. Trying not to pi$$ him off. He may praise you for bringing a bad (employee) situation up to him. If that does not yield any satisfaction, try Mike Sanchez @ Malibu boats in Merced, CA. Pretty sure it's [email protected] Customer service rep. for Malibu Boats.

BUT remember: this guy who tried to pull a fast on on you is the closest Malibu dealer to you, right???

Keep us posted, but don't use the shop's name, or location.

Good luck. Pat

I would agree. No need to lower your self to his level. I assume the work that was done was completed properly? I think our take home message is "get it in writing". Its sad but seems to be the norm every where.

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You paid for "de-winterization" ? What's that??? All mine consists of is putting in both plugs, open the seacock (I store mine with -100 a/f in the block), and take the "Battery Tender" off the battery posts. I don't even pull my battery out of the boat or disconnect for the winter. If the boat is winterized properly, "de-winterizing" seems like a non-issue.

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The other take away here is: Learn to do the winterization and de-winterization yourself. Saves a bunch of money and you know it's done right. Lots of threads here in the archives about how to.

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I don't agree. If you mess up the winterization, it could cost you a motor block$$$. Now it isn't hard but you've got to get everything right.

If you do the winterization yourself, when you change the oil be careful not to spill used oil all over your carpet when you chage it. That's the hardest part of winterizing if you ask me. But you newer boat owners don't have to worry about that. What year did they start putting drain hoses in?

And don't let the intake suck the red straw in!!

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I don't agree. If you mess up the winterization, it could cost you a motor block$$$. Now it isn't hard but you've got to get everything right.

If you do the winterization yourself, when you change the oil be careful not to spill used oil all over your carpet when you chage it. That's the hardest part of winterizing if you ask me. But you newer boat owners don't have to worry about that. What year did they start putting drain hoses in?

And don't let the intake suck the red straw in!!

What's the red straw thingy?

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I don't agree. If you mess up the winterization, it could cost you a motor block$$$. Now it isn't hard but you've got to get everything right.

If you do the winterization yourself, when you change the oil be careful not to spill used oil all over your carpet when you chage it. That's the hardest part of winterizing if you ask me. But you newer boat owners don't have to worry about that. What year did they start putting drain hoses in?

And don't let the intake suck the red straw in!!

What's the red straw thingy?

The straw that comes taped to the fogging oil can. I've seen a couple threads where they were fogging the engine and the straw got sucked in. Never heard anything bad come of it though.

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I would agree with most of these people the key is this is the closest dealer in your area if you have a major problem is the eny place else that is good to work on your boat. if you dont need this dealer than raise hell if you need this dealer in the future than talk to him nicely about it.

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Contact the Owner of the shop first. Trying not to pi$$ him off.

Here is the problem. The guy is the co-owner. One partner runs the sales and shop the other runs the service.

I can't believe how well people take to the dealerships attempt to rip people off. Do you really think I'm the only one getting pooched. NO WAY!!!!

Even if this is the only dealer within 2000 miles I cant go back knowing he is going to try to screw me again?

Fool me once shame on you .........

I've not mentioned any names, but people we are the customer. Am I missing something? Don't you think one important purpose of this site is to warn our fellow boat owners about A-holes like this. It's not the money, I just get PO when someone tries to rip me off.

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I won't hesitate to make their identity known. Just make sure all of your facts are true and provable.

Here in Nor Cal, Cope & McPheter's / Ultimate Watersports has a reputation for poor customer service (it has been brought up here multiple times and I've experienced it myself) but recently we're hearing stories about new managers, new policies, and improving service. Would these changes have happened if no one ever complained loudly about the poor treatment?... Dontknow.gif ...I doubt it.

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I'd be pissed too. Burn the place down!!! just kidding

I don't have a good answer. All mine are bad!

I guess I would warn as many people as possible. using the internet.

If you were closer I would go picket with you.

Talk to the other owner and see if he can do something? I don't know what.

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$200 and 2 and a half hours for de-winterization? If you feel like a road trip, come on down to MO...I'll do it for $50 in 15 mins.

I think it would be an interesting experiment to pull off a plug wire or something then take the Bu and a hidden camera into some of these "dealerships." IMHO this is really no different than selling an old woman an unneeded hearing aid.

Blowup.gif

Edited by Tom Sawyer
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$200 and 2 and a half hours for de-winterization? If you feel like a road trip, come on down to MO...I'll do it for $50 in 15 mins.

I think it would be an interesting experiment to pull off a plug wire or something then take the Bu and a hidden camera into some of these "dealerships." IMHO this is really no different than selling an old woman an unneeded hearing aid.

Blowup.gif

If this keeps up you could be the closest.....

I'm learning the mechanical now with a little help from friends and neighbours. I was just so green last Oct that I did not want to take the chance of ruining my lifelong dream. I know none of you can relate to that feeling.

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$200 and 2 and a half hours for de-winterization? If you feel like a road trip, come on down to MO...I'll do it for $50 in 15 mins.

I think it would be an interesting experiment to pull off a plug wire or something then take the Bu and a hidden camera into some of these "dealerships." IMHO this is really no different than selling an old woman an unneeded hearing aid.

Blowup.gif

If this keeps up you could be the closest.....

I'm learning the mechanical now with a little help from friends and neighbours. I was just so green last Oct that I did not want to take the chance of ruining my lifelong dream. I know none of you can relate to that feeling.

Actually, I know that feeling very well. When a dealer told me he wanted $400 for "Annual Service" I became determined to do all routine maintenance myself, and, believe me, I am very mechanically declined. Crazy.gif That said, it's important to keep in mind that the dealer has overhead costs to cover..they have a place to keep staffed, lit, insured etc. I thought the $400 was extremely high, but I don't think they were ripping me off either. With what people are paying for these boats, I'd expect some people would pay that without blinking an eye.

As far as your case goes, I'm not even sure what "de-winterization" is. This is my boat's 6th season, it's never been "de-winterized" and it seems to be running fine. There's no way in H it could should take two hours and cost $200.

If I can do it...so can you. All the info you need is right here.

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$200 and 2 and a half hours for de-winterization? If you feel like a road trip, come on down to MO...I'll do it for $50 in 15 mins.

I think it would be an interesting experiment to pull off a plug wire or something then take the Bu and a hidden camera into some of these "dealerships." IMHO this is really no different than selling an old woman an unneeded hearing aid.

Blowup.gif

If this keeps up you could be the closest.....

I'm learning the mechanical now with a little help from friends and neighbours. I was just so green last Oct that I did not want to take the chance of ruining my lifelong dream. I know none of you can relate to that feeling.

Actually, I know that feeling very well. When a dealer told me he wanted $400 for "Annual Service" I became determined to do all routine maintenance myself, and, believe me, I am very mechanically declined. Crazy.gif That said, it's important to keep in mind that the dealer has overhead costs to cover..they have a place to keep staffed, lit, insured etc. I thought the $400 was extremely high, but I don't think they were ripping me off either. With what people are paying for these boats, I'd expect some people would pay that without blinking an eye.

As far as your case goes, I'm not even sure what "de-winterization" is. This is my boat's 6th season, it's never been "de-winterized" and it seems to be running fine. There's no way in H it could should take two hours and cost $200.

If I can do it...so can you. All the info you need is right here.

My last sentence was meant tounge in cheek, I'm sure everyone can relate.

I am all for people making money, just a little old fashioned in thinking you can be successful and honest.

You're right this site is awesome for info to do almost everything to the boat. That is the way I'm going now (replaced steering cable on Sat thanks to great directions from the site). BTW it took a mechanical moron like me 1 1/2 hrs. the bu shop quoted 5hrs.

Once again the pupose of this post was to let Crew members in Vancouver and the Lower Mainland to be aware of the practices of ROD at PERFORMANCE WATER SPORTS. (oops was that my outside voice).

I think the crew should stick up for and protect eachother from these situations.

And Rod, if you read this, you should know exactly who I am unless you pull that crap with every customer. Call me a liar.

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De-winterizing a Malibu: The 5 step way...

1) Put plug(s) in boat.

2) Put gas in boat.

3) Put boat in water.

4) Put key in ignition.

5) Start boat and go enjoy the rest of summer.

They tried to charge you for that -rotflmaopmp ROFL.gif

I realize dealers have to make money, but as long as they did the winterization properly their is not dewinterization.

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btw, good for you for calling out the dealer. I'm with ya on the dealers that suck should be called out on it! If that happened to me I'd be buying a mastercraft next go around. People like that should be digging holes for a living, not dealing with people. (no offense to any hole diggers)

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i agree with doing all maintenance yourself. boats are extremely easy to work on, and you care a lot more about your boat than the service dept does.

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I deal with PWS and haven't had issues with the shop trying to screw me.

That said, my VLX is being dewinterized as we speak so I'll keep this in mind. I think I was told at the end of last season that the charge for winterization service included the dewinterization too.

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De-winterizing a Malibu: The 5 step way...

1) Put plug(s) in boat.

2) Put gas in boat.

3) Put boat in water.

4) Put key in ignition.

5) Start boat and go enjoy the rest of summer.

They tried to charge you for that -rotflmaopmp ROFL.gif

I realize dealers have to make money, but as long as they did the winterization properly their is not dewinterization.

Tony,

I hate to disagree, but I think it's actually a 6 step process. You forgot put beer in cooler. :)

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i agree with doing all maintenance yourself. boats are extremely easy to work on, and you care a lot more about your boat than the service dept does.

Just out of curiosity, what does a dealership do in a dewinterization to justify charging someone for it. Lets see, make sure the battery is charged up, vacuum the carpet, clean a little here, a little there.......maybe put fresh gas in.

In second thought, is this part of a winterization-storage package? For those that are hesitant of a little maintenance, in my opinion this is probably the biggest scam in the marine industry for the amount of service that is actually done. Of course this is just my 2cents Biggrin.gif

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De-winterizing a Malibu: The 5 step way...

1) Put plug(s) in boat.

2) Put gas in boat.

3) Put boat in water.

4) Put key in ignition.

5) Start boat and go enjoy the rest of summer.

They tried to charge you for that -rotflmaopmp ROFL.gif

I realize dealers have to make money, but as long as they did the winterization properly their is not dewinterization.

Ahmen!!

Guess I should have read the entire post Biggrin.gif

I forgot about these key steps

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