Reading, Pennsylvania
Not resolved

On Friday July 24th I dropped off my 2005 Nissan Pathfinder at AAMCO located at 1117 Lancaster Ave, Reading, PA 19607 for a diagnostic. My vehicle was having the following issues: 1) Positive cable on battery had a loose connection 2) Screeching noise at acceleration (which I informed them that my belt and tensioner had previously been replaced at another garage but this did not fix the problem) 3) Check engine light was on (not at the present moment because of the loose battery connection).

I was called by Izzy around 10am and told that my positive battery terminal needed to be replaced, along with the belt and tensioner to get rid of the screeching noise even though these had already been replaced in the past. He was unable to give me a diagnostic for the check engine light at this time because the light was not on. He said that it probably had reset itself from the bad positive cable connection from my battery but I could bring the vehicle back on Monday July 27th if the light came on during the weekend. At this time I opted not to repair the belt and tensioner since I wanted all repairs to be completed at once when I knew what the check engine issue was.

On Monday July 27th I dropped off my vehicle in the early morning because the check engine light was now on. Around noon James gave me a call to inform me that it was a catalyst system efficiency below threshold bank 2 code but that they would need to complete about an hour of diagnostic to pin point exactly what the check engine light code was, it could be one of the actual catalytic convertors or just an oxygen sensor. I authorized this to be completed. At about 515p I received a call from James to tell me exactly what my vehicle needed repaired. He told me that I would need to replace one of my catalytic convertors but that it was highly recommended that both of them be replaced. He also discussed with me that my fan clutch and belt tensioner were the cause of the screeching but that the belt looked new and in good condition. I picked up the vehicle around 545pm with my husband and scheduled an appt to have the work started the following day Tuesday July 28th after he gave me a quote of the total cost and exactly what repairs would be completed. My husband and I explained to James that we needed the vehicle in tip top shape to be sure that it would pass emissions and inspection as we are planning to travel to Florida in the next month or so. James informed me that the repair would be a day and a half of work and I would have the vehicle back by the latest the afternoon of Wednesday July 29th.

Tuesday July 28th the vehicle was dropped off before opening time. I went in at open time and spoke with James about exactly what needed to be done. He said he would have a quote emailed to me at work by the latest 930am. I did not receive this quote until about 11am only after calling James to check on what was going on that I had not receive the quote yet. At the time I spoke to James I told him to go ahead and proceed with the repairs. The repairs to be completed were 1) automatic belt tensioner 2) fan clutch 3) all spark plugs 4) upstream oxygen sensor 5) driver side and passenger side catalytic convertors. The code for the catalytic convertors was the only engine code my vehicle had, as according to James. He again confirmed with me that the repairs would be done at the latest by the close of business Wednesday July 29th at which time I would be able to pick up my vehicle. This was extremely important because my husband had to arrange to miss work while these repairs were being completed.

I was called by James on Wednesday July 29th around lunch time saying my truck would be done in an hour or so and that all repairs had been completed. I informed James that I would be picking up the vehicle with my husband around 530p-545p when I was off work. I arrive to pick up my vehicle & it was "just being finished up". The technician accelerated the vehicle while it was still in the dock and it was still screeching. The technician took the vehicle for a “final” test drive and the vehicle screeches as he is pulling away and as he is pulling back in. I speak to James and inform him that my vehicle is clearly not fixed if it is still screeching. We refuse to take the vehicle until it is completely fixed & demand that they provide us with a rental being that my husband is due back to work that night. James tells me that he is unable to provide me with a rental that Aamco has a contract with Enterprise car rental for $30/day that I would have to pay out of pocket for, even though this is clearly their mistake for not having my vehicle correctly and completely repaired. James assures me that my vehicle would be priority on Thursday and informs us that they adjusted the power steering to the specific manufacturer’s recommendations when replacing the tensioner and fan clutch to be sure that it was not damaged when these were replaced. I make it clear to James that I would need my vehicle repaired and back to me Thursday July 30th.

I call James first thing in the morning Thursday July 30th to make sure that my vehicle is priority; he assures me that it is. Around 5pm James calls to inform me that my vehicle still is not completely fixed & the part required would not be in until Monday August 3rd afternoon but that I am able to take the vehicle in the mean time. We arrive to pick up and pay for the repairs around 540pm (the total cost of repairs was $2879.02); we schedule an appt to bring it back on Monday August 3rd. I assume that the check engine light issue has been repaired being that the check engine light is off at the time of vehicle pick up. James once again explains to us all that was done to the vehicle. I drive off content that one of the issues (check engine light) is now taken care of and that we have an appt scheduled to finish the repairs for the screeching sound. As I am driving the vehicle starts to make a rumbling noise that sounds like a motorcycle after driving less than 50 miles the check engine light comes back on. I immediately call and leave a message for James. I take the vehicle to Advance Auto parts to see what exactly the check engine codes are. The codes are P0550 (power steering, pressure sensor, switch circuit) and P1283 (air fuel sensor 1, heater bank 2).

I drop off my vehicle first thing Friday morning July 31st. James takes the vehicle for a test drive with me and hears the new sound my vehicle is making. When we arrive back he asks the technician to place the vehicle on the lift and see what the sound is. They determine that the sound is something loose from the exhaust system when they removed it and it was not properly put back on. The technician scans the vehicle and James informs me that the check engine codes are from the work they performed and they will be fixing it. Once again James promises the vehicle is going to be fixed properly. James calls me around lunch time to inform me that they are going to be taking the vehicle for a long test drive to assure that the issues have been fixed. At 445p James calls to inform me that the vehicle is done. My husband picks up the vehicle at 530p. We drive the vehicle to run a few errands and the check engine light turns back on at 8p. Again we take the vehicle to Advance Auto parts to see what exactly the check engine codes are. The codes are C1130 (engine signal 1) and P1283 (air fuel sensor 1, heater bank 2).

I call and leave a message for James informing him of this and telling him that I would be dropping off the vehicle first thing Saturday morning August 1st. James assures me that they will work on my vehicle all day until close time. I call James around 1030a to check on the progress, he informs me that they still are working on the vehicle and that the check engine light is still on. He tells me that the new code has to do with a ground being broken when they removed the exhaust to complete the work by the spare tire. He tells me he will be giving me a call when the vehicle is done. Around 130p I go into Aamco to see if my vehicle is finally done only to discover it is not complete and they will not be able to finish looking at it until Monday August 3rd. James informs me that I am able to take the vehicle as is and bring it back on Monday since it was due to come back anyway to finish the repair for the screeching. I refuse to take my vehicle until it is completely repaired and demand that I be provided a rental until my vehicle has been fixed properly. James this time said that he would try to see what he is able to do but tells me that I would have to pay for it out of pocket and be reimbursed. I refused to do this without any guarantee of being reimbursed or having to have a rental company run my credit for a rental for something that is absolutely the fault of the repair shop. Needless to say I was not provided a rental vehicle and my vehicle had to stay there over the weekend.

On Monday August 3rd I receive a call around lunch time that my vehicle is fixed including the part that needed to be ordered from Thursday July 30th. Check engine light is off & there is no screeching at the time of pick up. My husband took the vehicle to work Monday night and on the morning of Tuesday August 4th as my husband is driving home from work the check engine light turns on. My husband calls in & is told he needs to take the vehicle in to be looked at yet again for a fourth time to determine what is wrong with the vehicle. He schedules to drop off the vehicle Wednesday Aug 5th. The vehicle again sounds like a motorcycle & is again screeching. We took it again to Advance Auto parts to see what exactly the check engine codes are. The code is again P1283 (air fuel sensor 1, heater bank 2). My husband will be taking the vehicle back to them tomorrow August 5th but at this point they have not done the job they have already been paid for & we continue to have to miss work and or be late because we only have one vehicle. They want to continue to take a “look” at the vehicle without actually fixing all the mistakes they have made. Instead they are causing more issues than the vehicle originally had when it was taken to be serviced. I want the vehicle fixed properly and completely or a full refund to take to another garage to have it fixed properly.

On Wednesday August 5th my husband dropped off the vehicle again around noon. We did not get a call back until about 5pm. James told us that they would be replacing all the parts with Nissan parts because they are unable to pin point the problem at this point and believe that it may be an issue with aftermarket parts. He also asked if there was a day that worked best that they could have the vehicle for the entire day so that the technician is able to diagnose the problem and have it fixed. Only day that would have worked for us at the time was Monday August 10th, we schedule to drop the vehicle off then to finally be completely repaired.

We do not feel comfortable driving the vehicle as is and decide to call James on Thursday August 4th and tell him that we want to drop off the vehicle the morning of Friday August 5th. James states that would be best as it would give them the entire day Friday, Saturday and Monday to work on the vehicle. He again promises to have the vehicle fixed as he has been working with corporate technicians to have the vehicle properly repaired. We do not hear from James at all Friday or Saturday until my husband calls and is told that everything has been repaired except for the catalytic convertors which will be in on Monday August 10th.

It is now Monday August 10th and we still did not hear from James until my husband calls him at 230pm. My husband is told by James that the vehicle is completely repaired that the only thing left to do is take the vehicle for one more test drive and that he would be called by James at 530pm. At 545p we still did not have a call from James and the shop closes at 6pm. We again call and are told that James is busy. We inform Izzy that we are on the way to pick up the vehicle. Upon arriving to pick up the vehicle we are informed that the check engine light is still not off and that it just went back on as they were backing the vehicle out of the dock within the last hour. This tells me that again my vehicle had not been worked on until the last minute. James now tells my husband that this code P1283 (which is still the code from the first time we picked up the vehicle on July 30th a code that was not there before they performed the work on the vehicle) has nothing to do with the work that they completed after he originally admitted to us on July 31st that this new code had to do with the work they performed on the vehicle. He informed my husband that they will not be fixing the vehicle as they claim this is an area of the vehicle they had not worked on. On the service description he states that they completed a smoke test (which was also previously completed as he stated this to me on July 31st and told me that the leak was from the work they performed) this new smoke test that they performed now reveals that the intake manifold upper plenum needs to be replaced and re-tested. James tells my husband that this now “new” repair should have been listed on our original quote but was not we actually were never informed that this was a concern. What I don’t understand is if this smoke test is telling them that the issue is in a different part of the vehicle why have they replaced parts 4 times now after claiming to have tested the vehicle and know what the issue is. Only code that my vehicle had was a faulty catalytic convertor when I dropped it off now after we paid there are issues with the vehicle that were not there when the vehicle was dropped off.



Reason of review: Repairs were not completed.

Monetary Loss: $3000.

Preferred solution: Full refund.

Aamco Cons: Level of professionalism, Never fixed car, Service.

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