AUBURN, NEW YORK -- The Cole Muffler shop in Auburn, NY, located at 35 East Genesee Street in the City of Auburn, New York commenced work on my front brakes after I just brought it in for an estimate. All the Cole Muffler Shops are now owned by Mavis, another tire and car service company. I did not sign any documents to begin taking parts off, and replacing them with new front brake parts. I was sitting in their tiny customer waiting area for the estimate when I noticed through a window, a mechanic was replacing calipers, rotors, and brake pads on my car. I ran out to him and yelled that I did not authorize any repairs so what the heck is going on!!
I then located the manager outside who was taking care of a customer's complaint on his car that had the struts almost go through their engine hood after Cole/Mavis worked on his car! Now I knew what kind of shop this was! I complained to the manager and he said I verbally told him to look and repair my van. I told him I did not, and where was my authorization on the repair. There was no estimate, no piece of paper that he gave me to sign. He said he told me. I said he did not. He then said it was dangerous to drive with disintegrated brake pads he brought to show me.
He then showed me the estimate on his hard to read computer screen, and I was astounded that the bill was over $700 with tax for 2 rotors, 2 brake calipers, 2 sets of pads, labor, and rotor cleaning magic stuff. I was astounded and said to remove the parts the mechanic installed, and he then lowered the price to about $600 with tax! I was floored at that price. Now do I go to another shop and wait around again?? I was pissed off that Cole Muffler would stoop to the sales tactics of replacing all the parts needed without my authorization, then tell me that they could take off the parts and replace them with the old ones, and send me on my way.
They preyed upon my good nature, and I have the bill I did eventually pay, without my signature which states that if I signed the document, it will waive my rights to an estimate. I did not waive my rights. This could be used in a court of law I was told. Seems that this sales tactic is immoral, and unethical. I then went to other brake and muffler shops in Auburn and got estimates with tax of about $425 at Monro Muffler, and $450 at Midas. Calling the Cole Muffler Shop back he said he is the new manager since the old manager was no longer there, and he would have to talk to his boss.
I then called him back and he said that his own estimates from Monro and Midas were higher than his at Cole/Mavis and that I must have a relative that works there to get the low prices! I told him I do not know anyone that works at those other shops!!! No satisfaction was given for this disservice at Cole/Mavis and I would tell anyone now to get a written estimate, and tell the service manager that, before any work is being done, or expect to be ripped off. I also would never suggest to anyone to go to Cole/Mavis for anything!! Their customer relations and customer service after the sale needs improvement.