Am I right to be suspicious of dealership? - Mercedes-Benz Forum

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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-02-2015, 05:12 PM Thread Starter
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Am I right to be suspicious of dealership?

So I brought my 1996 c220 into the dealership because the locks were not working.The key would not engage the locks and I couldn't figure out why so I brought it in.(blown fuse) Well today I got a call from the service department saying I needed a new drive shaft coupler and they wanted to order me one.($1,100 part) First off I hadn't heard had any strange noises/vibrations so I was throw off when service department said I needed a new one . Second how in the heck did they find out i needed a new drive shaft coupler if all they were supposed to be working on was the locks? Is it routine to do a full car inspection for simple things?
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-02-2015, 05:18 PM
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you went in for the non functional locks, why are they looking at the Driver shaft coupler.
Tell them to stick to the original problem


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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-02-2015, 05:22 PM Thread Starter
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too late for that, already got the part and the locks are fixed. apparently it was just a blown fuse. it just sounds off to me and i wanted to see if it was routine for a full car check like that when fixing something like locks also is 1,100 dollars reasonable for this part?
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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-02-2015, 05:33 PM
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Did you authorize the driveshaft work?

Honestly imo I feel since they found it was only a fuse that you are mechanially niave and are trying to take you for a ride

I would not have them do the driveshaft
Without knowing the part hard to say if fair
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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-02-2015, 08:00 PM
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When you go for routine scheduled maintenance, they change the oil & filter, and check, inspect or otherwise look for things that also need work. Whether or not anything additional gets done, they feel very comfortable charging $300, $400, $500 or more for the oil change and the inspection of all the other items. For the same work on my 107, my very trustworthy Indy would basically charge me for an oil and filter change.

If you take your car in for some specific problem between regular maintenance appointments, it would probably vary from dealer to dealer whether it's routine to check over other various/misc. items on the car, but they're in the business of selling parts and labor, so it shouldn't be surprising that they give the car the "once over". Maybe you should ask the dealer why they're checking the driveshaft for a blown fuse.

Are you right to be suspicious? Unless I trusted them absolutely, I'd be at least a little suspicious.

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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-02-2015, 10:00 PM
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I would be extremely careful of upselling at the service department. MB of Huntsville told me 5 years ago my ML320 needed over $5400 in repairs involving brakes (I had just replaced them) and a rear oil seal they claimed was leaking. 5 years later I have yet to see one drop of oil from that seal.

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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-03-2015, 06:42 AM
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Taking a 20-year-old C-class to a dealership for a fairly minor problem (locks) is suspect in the first place.
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-03-2015, 07:20 AM
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It become routine for all dealerships to perform "free safety check" on each car they service.
Undisclosed source says the dealer's mechanics call the procedure "revenue seeker"
Would honesty of dealers not be in question, why would they get nickname "stealers"?

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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-03-2015, 10:32 AM
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In addition to the other general comments here, I've scratched my head for quite a while about what they mean by a "drive shaft coupler".

The driveshaft in your car is COUPLED at both ends by a flex disc, sometimes called a guibo. It looks like this:

Those run about $150 at typical dealer prices.

There is also a universal joint in the middle of the two-piece driveshaft; however, it is not a separately-replaceable part that can be "ordered." (The driveshaft itself has to be replaced, a very expensive part, but it's more commonly rebuilt, though not by the dealer.)

So I think yes, if the dealership is trying to sell you one flex disc for $1,100 plus labor to install it, they are raking you over the coals.

Just thank them for their time, and head for a good indie shop. Have them inspect the driveline components (this will typically include the flex discs, universal joint, carrier and center bearing). If they recommend replacement, their quote will be hundreds less than the dealer, and it will include labor, too.

Good luck.

Oh, and I can't take my car to the dealer for anything without them performing a "complimentary" inspection, which usually results in a list of things that should be taken care of, none of which is less than $1,000.

Go figure...

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