Carte blanche is presumed by this business. By leaving your car and keys with them, you’re writing them a blank check. You BETTER have a written price commitment from them in advance, but I’m betting they won’t give you one. In my most recent visit, I simply asked how much it will cost to replace all four struts on my car. They refused to give me a price without looking at my car first, alluding that they needed to ensure the right parts were obtained, so I left the car with them. They called me and told me that the parts are unavailable, and stated furthermore, that the struts don’t need to be replaced. I don’t know who they rely on exclusively for parts, but there are many aftermarket strut manufacturers; surely one of them has struts for a popular 3-year-old car. When I went to retrieve the car, they charged me $65 for looking at my struts. That’s totally unnecessary – there is little one can do to diagnose whether struts are needed or not – a mere visual examination of the outer casing for visible signs of fluid leaking is all one can do and that is scarcely conclusive; usually need is determined by mileage or tire-cupping instead. But I did not ask for a diagnosis – I assumed that the struts are bad and only asked for a cost-estimate to complete a very specific task. They still gave me no price to replace the struts, even when I asked again upon paying the bill. Obviously, it’s easier just to charge me $65 to say “no deal”. That’s quick and easy money, right? But there’s more. When I was told that the struts didn’t need to be replaced I explained that the rear tires were cupping badly, which suggests the struts are worn or defective. A woman whom I doubt actually has any mechanical expertise offered a number of unhelpful ideas about what could cause that – unhelpful, because they were not only invalid, but ridiculous. One of those suggestions is that the abnormal tire wear on the rear tires was caused by the front-end alignment. She offered a FREE alignment check and while it made no sense, because I had just replaced the tires and she assured me they would call me if it needed adjustment, I agreed to the free alignment check. They didn’t call – they just adjusted the toe setting and added another $75 to my bill. Add to that some bill-padding junk charges including “shop materials” and “Hazmat fee” for a minor adjustment that involves no parts, and sales tax on the whole sum, bringing the total to $170 for something that I did not want, did not approve, and which did nothing to address my only concern -- abnormal tire wear on the rear tires. And still no estimate for replacement of struts – the only thing I asked for. I’ve relied on them for many years and looking back, I see depriving me of the ability to give informed consent is a persistent business pattern. Read through their reviews and you’ll find similar complaints interspersed among all the many satisfied reviews of those who are easy to please and eager to review nicely – just as I used to be. Check the BBB website and you will find Harlan Automotive is not BBB-accredited, and at least one other person wrote a complaint similar to my own. If you don’t care what it costs to fix your car or even if you’re being treated fairly, they’ll probably satisfy you with their work. That’s something, but not enough for me, anymore. I will never return.
Darnell, customer feedback is important to us, and we appreciate you taking the time to share your thoughts so that we may address them. We're always happy to work with our customers to make things right if a negative situation occurs as a result of human error. We want to extend a sincere apology for what you felt was a less than positive experience at our shop, as that is never our intention nor regular standard or service and we do apologize. To ensure we determine the correct cause of the problem and the required services needed to fix the vehicle, we do not give those types of quotes over the phone without physically looking first in person. This allows for a more accurate diagnosis, pricing, and communication on what needs to be done. We did want to dive deeper into the potential causes of this seemingly more "rare' issue that seems to be happening specifically to this type of vehicle and found that this is a big complaint with people who have these Hyundai Elantras and the cupping of the tires. We have reached out multiple times without clear contact back on which solution (if any) you'd like to proceed forward with your given permission. We did follow-up with you providing multiple options to see what route you would prefer to take proceeding forward; one of them being to provide you with a refund. We could also work with the dealership to seek out these specific struts that we've had great difficulty finding available at this point in time, but we would not necessarily recommend this because this part seems to be the main cause of the cupping problem in itself and may not be a permanent solution. We could also find an aftermarket shock that's a better-quality part and work with the rear alignment, but if you do not feel comfortable doing that, we could just resolve the issue by refunding you your money. If you feel comfortable doing so and would like to, please contact the shop to let us know you'd like to further discuss this situation in private and we would be happy to do so. Thank you!
- Harlan Automotive