Pep Boys Complaint - Yes, you have a warranty, no we wont honor it
MORENO VALLEY, CALIFORNIA -- Two years ago I took my 1998 Dodge Grand Caravan in to have the serpentine belt replaced since it was original to the vehicle that now had 119,00 miles on it. The service was relatively quick and the van seemed to have new power and life. Two days later, the belt started squeaking again. I called the service department and the man there told me that it does that for a while when its new and to not worry. I am not a mechanical person. Over the next 2 years my wife and I drive the van a total of 8,200 miles since I drive a company car.
Fast forward to last night ---->
My wife is driving the van home from work at night and the van suddenly looses power to the steering, but can still accelerate. My wife attempts to pull over, nearly wrecking the van due to no power steering and then the van starts overheating. Upon inspection, the serpentine belt had just come loose. We called Pep Boys since the belt had a 3 year warranty and they came and towed the vehicle to their store nearby. Tow service was quick by the way :D
Inspection revealed that the serpentine belt had come loose, causing loss of power steering, water pump power was lost and caused the radiator to overheat and crack, thermostat was now damaged as well.
After replacing the radiator and reattaching the new belt, the system was pressure tested and revealed that no other components were damaged that may have lead to the belt coming off. Interesting...
I commented to the service manager that it was not a labor warranty issue as the belt would have come off in a matter of days if not immediately if something was not tightened. Since there was no other problems with the van, then it had to be a belt problem.
To make a long story short, the belt failure falls under warranty and resulted in the damage to the radiator. The service manager does not want to cover it under warranty for unknown reasons. He says that the part was put on 2 years ago, I told him that it had a 3 year warranty. He was then evasive and did not talk to me anymore.
I have contacted corporate office and haven't heard back from them yet, I have also contact the Bureau of Automotive Repair and filed a complaint with them.