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Subaru Dealership Customer Service?

By z220580 6 September 2010 40

My ordeal from Rolfe Subaru in Phillip ACT for you people paying top dollars and expecting 5 stars treatment.

Sunday afternoon, I saw water dripping from under my car. I opened the bonnet and to my astonishment my radiator was leaking water. The plastic screw that is used to flush the radiator had melted and water was just pouring out from around the screw and in the middle of it. I thought, maybe the screw has gone lose, so I get a screw driver and try to tighten it up and bang, it all just gets worse and when I take the screw out, to my disbelief the lower part of it has melted and fallen into the radiator. There is a hole in the remaining screw which I managed to fill with a piece of rubber from the sole of a shoe and power glue.

So, Monday morning the first thing I do is drive straight to Rolfe Subaru in Phillip ACT from Queanbeyan NSW which is like a 25-30km drive with my leaking radiator and I pray to god that the hot water in the radiator does not bust open that screw. To be safe, I brought 3 litres of water along with me just in case.

By the way, I serviced my car at Rolfe Subaru in January 2009 and it cost me $2500, including a new radiator. This very leaking radiator that requires attention.

Long story short, the parts manager checks for the part into his fancy computer system and success, he finds it. I tell him that surely they need to give warranty on their parts. To my greatest disbelief, I am told that when they put in the new radiator, they used my existing screw so as to save me from buying new screws!!! Unbelievable, yes, a new radiator with second hand screw that is exposed to 90degree heat. So, I have to pay $19.71 for the new screw, which I do because I am in a rush to go to work and not in the mood to argue. The parts manager comes out with me to help me put the new screw in place and surprise surprise, the screw does not fit. He is puzzled, he can’t figure out why the screw won’t fit because he checked the part number and it all seems to fit the Car serial number. He calls his mechanic from the garage who tells him to try and find another screw from the store that might be deeper, which he does on the spot. He comes back with the new screws but still puzzled why none would fit. They start wondering what kind of radiator was put into my car for which they don’t stock the parts!!!

They both look at me and tell me “WE’RE VERY SORRY” there is nothing we can do. There is this radiator shop down the road in Phillip, maybe give him a try and he might have a screw that will fit your radiator. I am astonished, I am out of words, I am just plain mortified. The only reason why I ever went to Rolfe Subaru is so that if ever something goes wrong with my car, they give me the assurance of fixing it and providing me with Genuine parts that will not cause my car to fail but right now, they are telling me to drive off my car with a leaking radiator and hopefully someone somewhere might be able to fix my problem.

$2500 and all I got for a failed part is “SORRY”, I am never going there again.

What’s Your opinion?


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Subaru Dealership Customer Service?
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sps179 9:42 am 06 Dec 15

Fresh (2015) warning about Rolfe Subaru, buyer please be careful. Had taken my Suby to Rolfe Phillip for many years, service quite expensive but otherwise reasonable.

Very first time I ever took it Rolfe Belco, they put it in writing that leaking head gasket needed doing straight away, at $3K. However, I had detected none of the usual and very obvious signs, and two other mechanics that I trust agreed there was virtually no leak, and just leave it. They surmised Rolfe was ‘looking for work’, but surely they wouldn’t trash the brand just for that? Anyone else had similar experience?

p1 12:31 pm 09 Sep 10

Holden Caulfield said :

p1 said :

I really like my Subaru. I wonder if mine was built while the made nice looking cars, or before that.

Well, if it is a current model Impreza, Liberty or a Tribeca of any vintage, then, yes, it’s shite! It’s probably a very good car, and you’re not alone, Subaru are breaking sales records across the country. Doesn’t mean the cars look any good, though. IMO, of course.

Nah, my subie was made in 1990 🙂

Holden Caulfield 11:56 am 09 Sep 10

p1 said :

I really like my Subaru. I wonder if mine was built while the made nice looking cars, or before that.

Well, if it is a current model Impreza, Liberty or a Tribeca of any vintage, then, yes, it’s shite! It’s probably a very good car, and you’re not alone, Subaru are breaking sales records across the country. Doesn’t mean the cars look any good, though. IMO, of course.

Solidarity said :

…To be honest, I think that all new cars, regardless of make, have started to cheapen.

Except for Alfa Romeos, which is what I ended up buying.

~lolz, is this a serious comment? You’d better hope the rumours of the Volkswagen Group buying Alfa Romeo are true and then hope they can stop the multi-million Euro losses racked up by Fiat every year, if you expect that comment to have any true merit.

Again, you may well have bought yourself a ripping car, with heart and soul, but to say Alfa is the only manufacturer that hasn’t cheapened itself in recent times is laughable, sorry.

Special G 7:38 am 08 Sep 10

Never had anything but good service from Subaru Phillip. Bought our Forester from them in 2005 and have serviced it with them since. They beat a melbourne dealer by $3500 to get our business in the first place.

H1NG0 2:22 pm 07 Sep 10

You should be able to figure that out pretty easy. The new Impreza looks like a Hyundai i30, the Liberty Sedan looks like a Camry and the Liberty wagon looks like a Tarago. Not the mention the Forester has turned from a small 4wd into something resembling a land cruiser. Subaru cars now look very cheap and nasty.

Solidarity 1:59 pm 07 Sep 10

I used to own a 1992 Liberty RS, I liked that car.

I test drove a new Liberty, too gimicky and cheap feeling for me to fork out $60k for.

To be honest, I think that all new cars, regardless of make, have started to cheapen.

Except for Alfa Romeos, which is what I ended up buying.

Pork Hunt 1:54 pm 07 Sep 10

Nerdling said :

I have to agree, Rolf has put me off buying another Subaru… after they tried to convince me that my brand new tyres were worn out, failed to replace parts that were at the end of life as part of a regular service, and they used incorrect parts to fix the dead peddle (yes, its an auto).

Some one said Subaru are an pain becasue they keep changing part numbers… I sorry, but if your the dealer ship for a manufacture, should you not be accross the various updated to your products (or at least have cross reference manuals).

I’m not saying Subaru are alone in dropping the ball though. My other car, a performance Nissan developed an interensing ‘wiggle’ under hard acceleration. I figgured the suspension bushings were wearing out, after all, the car had 60k on it (I’d bought it new and had it serviced by the dealer). The car went back to Nissan for its 70k and 80k service with nothing out of the ordinary being reported. Then, as I as not a fan of dealer servicing and the warranty was up I took it my my favorite mechaninc, who picked up the off side rear wheel bearing had colapsed, the whole thing was being held in place by the breaks! And just to make sure you seeing the point here, the car had visited Nissan twice with this fault.

I agree, there probably are deal service centres out there who do great work, but I’m yet to come accross one.

What’s a “dead peddle”? A deceased purveyor of narcotics perhaps….?

p1 1:25 pm 07 Sep 10

Holden Caulfield said :

I stopped considering Subarus when they stopped making nice looking cars and started producing shite that only a SsangYong owner could love.

I really like my Subaru. I wonder if mine was built while the made nice looking cars, or before that.

la mente torbida 1:19 pm 07 Sep 10

I’ve read this post in more than 1 place … hope you give Subaru a right of reply

Holden Caulfield 11:57 am 07 Sep 10

I stopped considering Subarus when they stopped making nice looking cars and started producing shite that only a SsangYong owner could love.

banjo 11:02 am 07 Sep 10

As a side note, I bought a new Subaru a year ago from Capital Subaru in Fyshwick and have found their service department to be very friendly and professional. They are moving into a new bigger premises shortly (if they haven’t already) so perhaps try taking your business to them z220580?

Nerdling 10:41 am 07 Sep 10

I have to agree, Rolf has put me off buying another Subaru… after they tried to convince me that my brand new tyres were worn out, failed to replace parts that were at the end of life as part of a regular service, and they used incorrect parts to fix the dead peddle (yes, its an auto).

Some one said Subaru are an pain becasue they keep changing part numbers… I sorry, but if your the dealer ship for a manufacture, should you not be accross the various updated to your products (or at least have cross reference manuals).

I’m not saying Subaru are alone in dropping the ball though. My other car, a performance Nissan developed an interensing ‘wiggle’ under hard acceleration. I figgured the suspension bushings were wearing out, after all, the car had 60k on it (I’d bought it new and had it serviced by the dealer). The car went back to Nissan for its 70k and 80k service with nothing out of the ordinary being reported. Then, as I as not a fan of dealer servicing and the warranty was up I took it my my favorite mechaninc, who picked up the off side rear wheel bearing had colapsed, the whole thing was being held in place by the breaks! And just to make sure you seeing the point here, the car had visited Nissan twice with this fault.

I agree, there probably are deal service centres out there who do great work, but I’m yet to come accross one.

Rangi 10:27 am 07 Sep 10

He didn’t say it hadn’t been serviced since he said the 2009 service was when the radiator was replaced

Very Busy 9:31 am 07 Sep 10

……and to all the Subaru drivers reading this – TURN YOUR FREAKING WANKER LIGHTS OFF !!!

fgzk 8:37 pm 06 Sep 10

Troll sniffer, I agree with you. There is a reason why the screw is plastic. You would have to ask a mechanic, but my guess is, it is sacrificial. Ie 19.95 screw versus $5000 engine rebuild. It will only do its real job when it runs very hot for extended periods of time. It didn’t fail it actually worked. Just a guess. Its not like it is a moving part. You might have another bigger problem elsewhere. Good luck with that.

I know a good mechanic but he is drinking beer and eating prawns in Townsvile. So he probably does not want to be disturbed with, cheap, whining, no-nothing customers.

olfella 7:57 pm 06 Sep 10

Moose said :

This kind of a post makes me uber sad to have someone like this driving a Subaru. They’re beautiful cars, with often wonderful owners who can care for a car properly. But when someone like this comes along for a bitch and a moan? Really mate?From all said, Subi dealership gave great service. Just because they don’t have the right screw is no need to go onto a public blog for a moan. Go back to the livejournal, myspace, whatever, and have a go there. Heck, while you’re still on the internet, go to carsales and list that Subaru, or learn to look after your car instead of moan about how the world isn’t revolving around you.

People keep taking their cars back to dealers because they think they are getting the best possible service by properly trained techs – and they are prepared to pay a premium price for that.
I think he has every right to bitch and moan…

farnarkler 7:53 pm 06 Sep 10

Stealerships are usually the same; they’re all Dr Jekyll when they’re selling you a car and Mr Hyde when it comes to taking care of it when it’s with them for servicing. Parts for my w124 Merc bought at Merc spares in Fyshwick are close to half the price being charged by the local Merc stealership.

I agree with #11. Haig Park or Subaroo are great.

H1NG0 7:34 pm 06 Sep 10

Subaru aint what they used to be. Unlike some others here, I don’t think you are at fault in the slightest. I think they have a lot to answer for in regards to the parts they use. I have heard other stories from that Subaru dealer but what dealer doesn’t have horror stories? I had one myself last week with another dealer in Phillip but they were excellent in dealing with the problem and as such, I will not name or shame them. Everyone has bad days, but when you are just going in for a scheduled service, you don’t expect headaches. The only reason why I get my car serviced at a dealer is because it is near my work and the convenience is worth it.

Eyeofthetiger 6:52 pm 06 Sep 10

Don’t blame the dealer, is it their fault this plastic screw has melted? No, as said it will not melt if it is subjected to normal temperatures, which is YOUR fault. You say the ‘original’ screw was used, yet you say the radiator must be different/dodgy.. If the original screw ‘still fits’ then it must be the same type of radiator, no?
You also say you serviced it in JANUARY 2009! Thats almost TWO YEARS AGO! Cars there are advised to be serviced every SIX MONTHS! Even if you went and got it serviced at another mechanic, that’s your problem, they probably didnt know the radiator had been replaced, if you had of taken it back to Rolfe, they may have checked it at the next service, which also brings the point if it was taken to another mechanic, whats there to say they didnt f**k around with the cooling system (which would have used the screw)
Dont blame others for your mistakes!

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