Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Back To The Truck AC Issue

Today? I had had enough.  Anyone that reads this blog may remember my trials and tribulations with the semi truck I drive at work whose AC was not working properly.  We had taken it in last year to fix it and then took it in again several weeks ago.

Well, it still isn't working properly.  That's 2 visits to the dealership, a total of 8 days in their shop and 8 days of renting another truck to take it's place plus a total of 3 grand - yes, $3,000 to fix it.  For that much money,  I better need a coat to wear if I leave that thing on high, which is what is USED to do before it broke. That cab would get icy cold regardless of the outside temperature.

When I got the truck back, it felt okay at first, but later on that day it didn't feel all the great.  Fast forward to now-extreme temperatures and it's simply not good enough.  It's "lukewarm" in that truck and that is NOT what we paid for.

As usual for me, I decided that twice in the shop was enough.  I called - the owner of that company actually. Of course, I did not get to speak to the owner, the owner forwarded me to the general manager over the service division.  I believe this is a 24 hour operation, 7 days a week.  They always have a backlog of trucks to fix, so when you take your truck in there, it may be 3 or 4 days before they even START on it.

The general manager called and started his spiel.  I was having nothing to do with it.  Our total cost for a non-functioning system was around $4,600 if you count the rental truck, which I do.  He wanted us to bring the truck in on an afternoon and then come for it the next morning NO, sir, we are not going to do that. Well, he replied, I am just trying to eliminate any further expenses we are both incurring.

Sir, YOUR company has incurred NO additional expenses.  WE have paid the tab for everything and WE had to pay for 8 days of a rental truck. Your statement that you have incurred "additional" expenses is outrageous at best.  He again asked if there was no way to just bring the truck in, they would work on it - all night if they had to - and it would be ready in the morning.  No sir, we have gone this route, as far as I'm concerned, this is YOUR problem and you are going to have to  deal with it on MY terms.

I further explained to this gem that we are a 2 man operation.  We start at 6:00 am. Deliveries that are in the system are expected to be on the road no later that 7:00am and contractors want their material. We do not have time to be driving 50 miles round trip to get that truck in the morning, which is WHY we have to rent a truck anytime we have to take it into the shop, which is, fortunately, not that frequently.

He went on and on about making an overnight deal work.  I finally stated to him that I would be happy to speak to the President of the corporation again if I  need to and he could make the final decision.  Mr. Gem (not his real name) backtracked considerably on that one and said no, we will get your a rental truck if it comes to that.

After 3 phones calls, to of them with this guy, I FINALLY get an apology for the truck having had been in their shop twice for the same issue.  I am still guessing this problem is simply a matter of adding additional freon, but I decided against doing that myself.  If, per-chance, it isn't a freon problem, then over-charging them system can blow the compressor and then you have a REALLY expensive repair when it comes to trucks, even though the AC system in a truck is no different than a car AC system, it's all the same thing.

I got back to the yard and discussed the situation with my manager.  We can take it in on Friday afternoon and they can have it ready by Monday morning.  Okay.  But, I played this guy, since he was attempting to play games with me, Mr. Gem that is.  I called him back and gave him my terms.  I can bring it in Friday afternoon, I can pick it up Friday morning, but.......you are going to have to have someone take me back to the shop and pick me up.  If you are not going to get us a rental truck, that is the LEAST you are going to do.

He didn't like that idea and decided that he would just come and get the truck himself and then bring it back in time for deliveries Monday morning.  Perfect.  Please do.........and I have your WORD on that, yes?  Oh yes, Mr. B, it shall be done.

What do you think?  Twice in the shop for the same problem. The first time, they gave us the  truck back and told us it wasn't completely fixed.  Surprised, I asked him why they had called us to tell us it was ready. "We didn't have authorization to do the additional repair".  "Do you not have telephones here?  Did we not leave a cellphone number contact?"  "Y, y, yeeees, but........" But what?  It was too late, I had already dropped of the rental truck because they had called us, telling the repair was completed and ready to pick up.

The second time, I informed them of what happened the first time and - yada yada yada. I specifically told them it wasn't blowing enough volume of air AND the air was not cold enough to keep the cab cool.  They fixed the first thing, they did not even ADDRESS the second item, even though I saw the man write it on the service ticket.

Oh, did I say another part of the terms of this situation is that we are not going to pay another DIME for this "fix"?  Yeah,  darn straight.  How much money should be expected to fix a freaking AC system?

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