Rant – Alki Auto Repair

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    Over the last two weeks I had my car serviced at Alki Auto Repair. It is THE SINGLE WORST consumer experience I’ve ever had. It feels like that urban legend where you take a healthy car in for some minor service and they ‘find’ several severe problems that weren’t there when you took it in.

    First, it was supposed to be a one day repair (some minor oil leaks, emission tuning, and new brake linings). They had the vehicle for 6 days!

    There were no problems with the cooling system when I took it in. However, during their servicing, the thermostat “failed” and had to be replaced ($415 ). Hmmm?? I was not informed of this until after the work was done.

    On my third use of the car (about 100 miles) following the service, the radiator (cooling system again) also “failed” and the car had to be towed 50 miles back to West Seattle. I had it towed to Alki Auto so they could repair the damage caused by their work on the cooling system. I foolishly thought they would guarantee their work. Instead—and with no estimate given to me or my approval to do additional work—they installed a new radiator ($472). If I’d known they did not stand behind their work, I would have taken it to a different repair shop.

    In additional to the towing, I had to get a rental car to get home from Woodinville. Alki Auto has refused to pay for or even share these expenses.

    The unauthorized total is nearly $900 over their estimate with no approval from me for the additional charges. They just replaced the parts and put in new ones. I was not shown or given the “failed parts”. They refused to accept any responsibility for the “failures” caused by their damaging repair and poor service practices. Management claims that the two healthy parts failing was just coincidence.

    I was the good guy—taking my business to the local merchant—and I got flimflammed by a very slipshod and questionable outfit. This shop is a cancer within the West Seattle business community.

    If you think I’m alone, go to http://www.yelp.com/biz/alki-auto-repair-seattle#query:auto%20repair%20shop (YELP.com) to see what others have to say. (I sorely wish I had done this before the service.)

    I strongly recommend avoiding ALKI AUTO REPAIR like the plague.

    I am posting on the West Seattle Blog only after having an extensive discussion with the management at Alki Auto Repair. They stonewalled me and claimed the parts “failures’ were simply coincidental to the work they performed.



    Wow… I could not be any more opposite. Alki has ALWAYS gone above and beyond for my Land Rover and the last 2 cars. Their attitude has always been fantastic and their work has been top notch.



    (I believe) this is the 3rd time this has been posted after being deleted twice for not following the Rant rules….



    MousePotato, I thought the same thing, but the last paragraph says what steps he/she took to notify management, so it now satisfies forum rules.



    Ah. Missed that.

    All is good in the world or ranting….



    Maybe its just me. When someone signs up for the forum page and on their first day rants about a business; I tend to not consider the rant for my own purposes. Rants, raves, referrals; I am more interested in what people say who I have some relationship with, even when it is an on-line relationship. There are several recognizable names here on the forum, who’s rant’s I take more notice of.

    I know, I could be missing a valuable heads-up with this practice, but I will take my chances and listen to people with whom I have history with.



    My family has a very similar experience this year.

    If I could give zero stars I would. A family member of mine went here for some work on their car because it was close to their house and their kid knew the owners son. The original work was for an oil leak repair.

    They ended up blowing up the motor and treating my family like garbage!! The owner has horrible customer service and is SO rude. He yelled at them on the phone and kept their car for three weeks. He refused to deal with my mom because she wouldn’t let him yell at her and she couldn’t be manipulated! He kept saying it would be ready but then would push the date back. He acted like my family was crazy for being so upset about them blowing up their motor that had no problems prior to them bringing it in. They did something messed up with the timing belt, tried to start the car up and then blew the motor.

    The owner refused to provide his insurance information and FORCED my dad into letting them put a junk yard motor in it. He kept claiming it is so much better than anything insurance would cover. He refused to provide a warranty on it as well!

    I would not let them work on my car if it broke down in front of their shop. I wish my family looked at their Google and yelp reviews before ever coming here. Do not trust them with your vehicles, not even for an oil change. They got their car back and the check engine light that wasn’t on to start with CAME ON! The speakers aren’t working and my dad won’t let my mom drive it and says don’t trust it it might break down! These people are CROOKS!!



    wow.. that review chart looks like the stock market took a hit. From 4’s to 2’s …Buyer beware, I guess.


    T Rex

    If anyone needs a great mechanic who is honest and trustworthy go talk to Ben at Complete Auto. He was on the 35th and Holden at the really ugly building he leased but has since moved to his own location on Delridge. He worked on my 2001 Ford Ranger until I finally decided to sell it and go new two yeas ago. And guess who bought it? Ben!
    He now takes are care of my two new vehicles and always will.
    He is simply the most honest, nicest and trustworthy mechanic I have ever had.



    It’s been years since it’s happened to me so I could be wrong, aren’t they obligated to provide an estimate prior to working on your car? I don’t think you should have paid for work you didn’t authorize.

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