Be careful to blame your auto repair shop with a “Since you—”


Be sure of your point, and how to present it, before you open your mouth

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Building a solid relationship with the store that handles your vehicles is no easy task. Finding one that you can trust completely is a challenge, although there are plenty of great facilities out there.


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With more and more technologies creating a growing gap in practical knowledge between vehicles and their owners, trusting our service providers has never been more important. So what does all of this have to do with the “Since you—” debate? A lot.

For those unfamiliar with this refrain, it is used by vehicle owners to try and improve their standing with their service provider. It sounds like “Since you changed my oil the signals aren’t working so you must have broken something. Now, this example is quite exaggerated and will make even those with the least automotive knowledge laugh, but you get the idea.

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Sometimes these debates start innocently enough, mainly because someone really didn’t know any better. But they can often be deliberate, because customers know that store managers – and above all dealer managers – often give in to minor but unrealistic customer complaints, just to avoid bad manufacturer surveys or social media site scores.

If you have a “Since You …” concern with your regular service provider, exercise caution and ask questions of the manager in private, not at a busy service counter. If you have a legitimate concern, you should be able to work things out. Otherwise, and especially if your approach is much less polite, don’t be surprised if you are shown the door and asked to never come back, leaving you on the hunt for a new store.


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Here are some common examples and how things need to be handled to come to a happy conclusion.

“Since you rotated my tires there is a wheel vibration”

It’s entirely possible, and probably not the store’s fault. For the most part, the tire and rim sets are balanced out of the vehicle. When a tire moves to a new position, it can vibrate, because the match between it and the wheel hub is not perfect. Answer: You may be on the verge of being rebalanced.

Infotainment test

“Since you updated the software on my radio, my playlist is gone”

When infotainment systems develop problems – and it seems to be more common these days – automakers scramble to develop software fixes. Sometimes these come with step-by-step instructions on how to save the built-in music, but sometimes not.


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If you’re told that an update is needed and you have a playlist that took you hours to choose and download, find out about the risk of losing it and whether the technology can download it to a computer. temporary drive to be reinstalled later. Almost any new infotainment system may need an update, so do what IT people have been recommending for years: create your own backup file.

“Since you replaced my engine, I have run out of heat inside the car”

This one may require a little diagnosis to determine if the store is at fault or if you have a new and unrelated problem. If this is due to a low coolant level, the technician probably did not make sure that all the air in the system was expelled, and a simple no-cost top-up should solve the problem. But if an HVAC control behind the dash doesn’t work, be prepared for a new repair estimate. Cars are complicated machines, and right after you fix something else, it’s possible that other things could go wrong.


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