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Unsatisfactory 24,000 km service

Discussion in 'Businesses and Service Providers' started by lefty, Mar 23, 2008.

  1. This is a review of my latest service with Peter Stevens in Melbourne.

    Last Wednesday I had the CBF in for it's 24,000 km service. I had been doing my own work to this point, but a few things, notably valve clearances are a little beyond me at this time. The other item on my list was the chain and sprockets.

    Originally I anticipated both would be done on the same day. Then I was informed there was a delay and promised Thursday. When I went back to collect, it hadn't even been scheduled for the day. It was only after conferring amongst themselves that they admitted a promise had been made. Then, after cutting my still working old chain they discovered they had aquired the wrong sprocket. I now had no option but to leave the bike with them heading into the Easter long weekend. No solutions were forthcoming - it was left to me to figure out what to do.

    In the end, I didn't get the bike back until mid-Saturday morning, and the job is incomplete and arguably questionable - the new chain has been installed on the old rear sprocket. Not only that, but I've been forced to pay for the new chain and front sprocket (that or do without my only transport.)

    On top of that, when I went to ride the bike home on Saturday, I got the bike about a half-metre outside their door before I noticed it was idling at over 3000 rpm. Try as I might I was unable to reduce the idle speed with all the usual suspects. This is after a major service, of which one of the items on the invoice mentions inspecting, cleaning and or replacing 'CARBY CHOKE'. They stuffed around with it for at least another half hour before informing me there was a problem with the choke and it was fixed.

    Then they actually asked me to bring it back to be cleaned because it hadn't been done on Wednesday and was supposed to be part of the service (according to them). This is on top of asking me to bring it back again when the correct rear sprocket arrives so it can be fitted. I know it's a little unusual but I do have a full-time job.

    To their credit, they did waive the labour charge associated with fitting chain and sprockets and I accepted $20 cash for a taxi Thursday evening to get home. Perhaps it's wrong of me but I still feel like I've been 'had'. :?

    So far as I can tell the bike has a little more grunt (note I emphasize little, this is a CBF250 which by definition is grunt-less), although I'm not holding my breath that something else isn't wrong.

    I have drafted a letter to the Service Manager and will be delivering it shortly. I will report back here on any progress made in terms of making up for my lost time and money, and any further discoveries I may make as to the work that was done, or not done... :mad:
  2. I detest service centres that offer everything but "service".

    Years ago, I took my ZX6R to Peter Stevens in Ringwood for a 6,000km service.

    I also took them a K&N filter for them to fit seeing as the bike would be apart.

    When I got the invoice they charged me $50 to fit the filter.

    After complaining to the store manager at the time. I was given a $50 credit which went to a jet kit :)

    When I questioned the service manager he stated "well we had to take the tak off to fit the filter, hence the charge. So I come back with but it states here on the service record, "remove tank, adjust carbies" so you really didn't need to remove the tank twice or you didn't balance the carbs.
    I got, the computer always spits that (remove the tank) on every service that we do.

    Suffice to say they never saw a further cent from me. Their accessories and parts, excellent service, the service department however............
  3. Rules:

    1) Never task a service centre to do more than one job at a time. E.g. xxxx'km service plus additional bits.

    2) Always get a loan bike

    3) Never book in near a holiday period
  4. Awwww Josh as soon as I read the heading, I knew it was you.

    What an absolute fcuk up. Lets hope that your complaint letter reduces your costs considerably or at the very least gets the jobs done as promised without further glitch, with an apology or two thrown your way as well.

    IMO giving you money for a taxi was to their credit, buts its the very least they could have done & by the sounds of it all that they bent over to do.

    If you did not request a new chain as part of the work, then making you pay for a new chain after cutting yours is unfair & ridiculous particularly as it was an action they did, without your permission.

    Both PP & Vic raised good points, so maybe when the dust settles from this debarcle look elsewhere & actually recieve "service" for your money.

    Fingers crossed.
  5. That's just it. I requested a new chain and sprockets. But the only option I was left with if I wanted my bike was a new chain on an old sprocket, which IMO is far from ideal. My biggest gripe is that I'm still paying for it, even though it's going to get worn while it's on the old sprocket..

    Edit: I've crossed my toes too.. :LOL:
  6. Here in Canberra I know of two very good workshops (at least). None of them are attached to retail sales outlets. Of the retail sales outlets, none come recommended for services or maintenence.

    When I buy a new bike, it won't be going to the sales outlet that sold it to me, or any other sales outlet. It will be going to the most trusted workshop in town. Seems obvious to avoid any retail outlet, unless their reputation is well known.
  7. I agree with vic, Parts and spares are excellent, never had any problems and have always been pretty fast (Even when ordering wierd things, and they call you back quickly.)

    The few times I have talked/used their service department, I was kept waiting for ages :( That and they never called me back, which sucks. I ended up just using a completely different service center, I don't care about taking a bit more time, its the lack of communication which gets to me.
  8. Funny isn't it, I found PS Service Centre in the city to be perfect and the spare parts / after market guys hopeless.

    On my old bike the service centre built a custom windscreen bracket and didn't charge a cent more then quoted for the installation cost. Chain and sprocket wasn't available when I booked the bike in, so they called to let me know before I dropped it in and booked me in a few days later.

    I did have the bike die on me once after a service. Called the SC, 20 minutes later Motorcycle Logistics turned up, dropped me off where I could get a Taxi and they took the bike to PS... PS covered the cost.

    Another time went in with a fuel filter that had a minor leak, was taken straight in with a comment along the lines of "fuel leaks and critical issues get priority". Covered under warranty.

    I don't use PS for my new bike as Suzuki are close to home and I'm trying them out but I'd have no issue taking my bike back to PS again.
  9. I've had far too many problems with mechanics to justify me spending money with them. A year ago I resolved to do my own servicing and now and 15,000k's later all's still sweet. Costs a few dollars getting the right stands and tools etc, but worth every sent in the long run.

    Sorry to hear your story mate.
  10. My latest discoveries:

    A small piece of the bike is missing from the right of the swingarm; goes between the axle nut and outside of the swingarm. Doesn't appear to do very much, but still, there was one on both sides before the service.

    Oh, and the new chain is on too loose. :evil:

    Edit: Either that or it's just wearing incredibly fast... at least it's easy fixed.
  11. That's a spacer, by the sounds of things. Keeps everything nice and straight. (I could be wrong)

    Go back and yell at them. They've been incompetent. Your chain will stretch for the first 500 or so k's. Not that quickly, however.
  12. Waiting for a rear sprocket? Huh? That's over-the-counter stuff, I've never had to order a sprocket in.

    Get the sprocket off them (or from somewhere else if you haven't paid for it yet) and bring it to a spanner night, you should learn to do this easy stuff yourself.
  13. Hello Josh. Sorry to hear of your tale of woe, but while Peter Stevens may be the biggest name in Motorcycling in Melbourne, they are also the busiest, so I reckon this is a big reason why a lot of things get "forgotten". I will also try to put a nice spin on this but you are "only" a 250 rider so are further down the food chain than say an MV Agusta or such. Not fair I know but unfortunately this is how it can work at the really large service centres.

    Loz is spot on though. and you should get equipped to do a lot of the simple stuff yourself, and I reccomend you get to a spanner night or two. Even checking valve clearance and chain and sprockets falls into the medium to easy classes.

    Good luck with it mate and send a PM if you want a hand. Mark.
  14. Understand mate. And you're right, it's more than unfortunate. No way am I "only" a 250 rider - it's my transport and my fun and it does pretty darn well at both those things, despite the size. And this 2fiddy rider will be upgrading mid-year, another reason to look after me I would have thought. :roll: Still, preaching to the converted here I know; I wont harp on about it anymore.

    Cheers guys, appreciate the advice and offers of assistance. Time to get myself to one of these spanner nights I think... :)
  15. Peter Stevens

    Just to add, I called the service centre the other day to ask for a quote on a job. Advised that they didn't 'have the time' to look at any bikes manufactured before 2000 (mine's '95 vintage). Fair enough - it's their business and they can work (or not work) on whatever bikes they choose. Clearly they only like the shiney new ones. Leaves a bad taste in my mouth, though. I'm thinking of buying a new bike in the near future. It won't be from PS.
  16. I refuse to have anything to do with PS..at any of their outlets
    so far (after a service and some trips to buy stuff...like a bike)
    the service is abominable, sales assistant interest in customers
    (me) is zero, the service people treat you like a 3yo dribbling child
    I know of mates ( i don't trust 'em )where tyre replacements have seen
    ill fitted chains from no alignment of the wheel or brakes loose or loose axles
    when the bike was handed over, and damage to yr bike seems to be routine (as we see here) :evil:

    caveat emptor
  17. Funny thing is I've had a few bikes serviced there in the past when they were in North Melbourne and never had any problems. Maybe they've gone downhill since or maybe I was just lucky. Seems like there's a market for another decent workshop around the inner city area.
  18. Yeah, that's the thing with those kind of businesses - a distinct lack of QA processes which results in extremely inconsistent results.

    The worse the shop, the more negative reports you get. So, the occassional mention that someone had okay service doesn't mean they're any good. It just means the planets happened to line up and shit actually got done on the day.

    The good shops have people that are focused and follow processes. They're organised. You walk in there and you can feel it. Their results are consistent. Good shops don't have 'she'll be right's cruising the corridors.

    That said, there is one retail outlet up here in the ACT that looks organised in the retail section. That is, until you spend some time there talking to the floor staff. They just want to sell you stuff and move on. This generally permeates into the workshop, I find.

    I don't see why it is so hard to do a little research into a business before you hand over your bike and cash, yet many people do without question.
  19. Some good news. :) I have spoken with the Service Operations Manager, a Mr Nick Wurf. He has been very helpful and professional in dealing with my original complaint letter:

    - A new chain and sprockets have been ordered
    - The missing cover has also been ordered
    - He has genuinely apologised without making excuses
    - I have been offered a free 30,000 km service and all defects/parts from the last service to be corrected free-of-charge
    - Assurances he will personally oversee the work on my bike

    Apparently his position was recently created to address a trend of these types of issues. I am told that staff are being trained and new QA processes put in place to avoid a reoccurance of this situation in future.

    So far as I can tell the information I have recieved from Mr Wurf has been genuine and honest. I have no reason to be suspicious at this time.

    I am naturally hesitant to have any future works conducted with Peter Stevens given our history, particularly since I'd like to conduct more of the work myself in future. However, provided the assurances I have been given are honored, they have accepted full responsibility and made at least a strong commitment to completely addressing my complaint. :)

    I will follow up on here when the corrective work has been carried out.
  20. That's a good result Josh. I would have pushed a bit further to see if they'd include a super charger in the 30 thou service.. but that's just me I guess. :grin: