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Old 03-26-2012, 04:19 PM
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Best dealer for service

Ordered my new JGC Overland 4x4 with the Adventure II package from a dealer in Orange County (SoCal), but I live in Riverside. When it comes time for service I would like to use a dealer in the Inland Empire. Can anyone recommend a Chrysler/Jeep dealership with a good service department in the IE? My new Jeep should arrive in about three weeks.
Thanks, Dan
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Old 03-26-2012, 05:16 PM
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Re: Best dealer for service

Quite frankly, IMHO the best dealer for service is no dealer at all. I would find a good, independent mechanic with references that you trust, and use them for the routine maintenance. Obviously you still need a dealer for any warranty issues, but a good independent mechanic will serve you well, be cheaper, be trustworthy when the vehicle gets older and needs repairs, and they will last you through this vehicle to whatever you own next...

With dealers a lot of the quality depends on the service advisor you work with. I've had great experiences at dealers until the service advisor leaves, then its never the same.
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Old 03-26-2012, 10:20 PM
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Re: Best dealer for service

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Originally Posted by SW03ES View Post
Quite frankly, IMHO the best dealer for service is no dealer at all. I would find a good, independent mechanic with references that you trust, and use them for the routine maintenance. Obviously you still need a dealer for any warranty issues, but a good independent mechanic will serve you well, be cheaper, be trustworthy when the vehicle gets older and needs repairs, and they will last you through this vehicle to whatever you own next...

With dealers a lot of the quality depends on the service advisor you work with. I've had great experiences at dealers until the service advisor leaves, then its never the same.
Agree 100% on the service advisor, which is key to quality of result. But in decades of using factory dealers and independent shops for repairs, even when checking both out carefully beforehand, the factory guys win nearly every time. This has been true even with independents specializing in the type of vehicle I'm bringing in.

That said, with Chrysler dealers it's not like Lexus -- you really need to select carefully. Ditto Land Rover dealers.

Same goes for aftermarket vs. oem parts, but not to the same degree. Some aftermarket stuff is quite good, but the percentage isn't equal to the factory provided parts. Exception is aftermarket performance gear, which from the right source can be the best choice of all.
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Old 03-26-2012, 11:07 PM
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Re: Best dealer for service

I used to say exactly the same thing until I found the right independent mechanic.

Lexus dealers are the same way, hit or miss. And at $130/hr for labor you don't want to miss lol
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Old 03-27-2012, 08:13 AM
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Re: Best dealer for service

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Originally Posted by SW03ES View Post
I used to say exactly the same thing until I found the right independent mechanic.

Lexus dealers are the same way, hit or miss. And at $130/hr for labor you don't want to miss lol
Benz dealers, too -- most are excellent, but some dogs are sprinkled in. And, yep, if your German baby isn't under warranty or service contract the charges for the simplest things look like the national debt.

This is but one of countless reasons we went with the WK2 rather than the similar ML series. Better, cheaper, faster!
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Old 03-27-2012, 08:32 AM
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Re: Best dealer for service

Unless its a warranty repair, the best place for service is my own garage.
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Old 03-27-2012, 04:39 PM
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Re: Best dealer for service

Thanks for the response...I can relate with most of the comments.

We own a 2003 Lexus LS430 that we purchased new and have used the same Lexus dealer exclusively from day one. True, the service writer (service adviser, etc.) will determine whether or not you will return. Crown Lexus in Ontario, CA is by far the best dealer regarding customer service. The service advisers are all knowledgeable, helpful and courteous. Obviously, due to an excellent training program. Hopefully, I can locate a Chrysler Jeep dealership that will provide a similar experience.

As for your own garage, I can relate. I owned a 1974 CJ5 with a stock 304 V8 for 24 years and did the majority of the maintenance and repairs myself. However, after developing back problems (have had two back surgeries), I had to sell my pride and joy.

It's not likely I will perform service on the new JGC. Also, given all the technical equipment on the vehicle, I would rather leave service and repairs to the experts.
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Old 03-27-2012, 06:20 PM
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Re: Best dealer for service

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Originally Posted by Lingohocken View Post
Benz dealers, too -- most are excellent, but some dogs are sprinkled in. And, yep, if your German baby isn't under warranty or service contract the charges for the simplest things look like the national debt.
Yeah, seriously. A 5k service at the Lexus dealer (oil change, tire rotation, fluid checks, bunch of inspections) is $250. My independent mechanic, who is a Lexus specialist charges me about $100. The REAL issue is when you get to where you have a concern that needs to be diagnosed. We're talking about $1000+ for brakes. My guy might charge me $600. No matter how wonderfully incredible the dealer might be...thats a big difference. Now, you get a loaner car and all...but hell I could go rent a Lamborghini for the day with the savings. I had control arms replaced on my old Lexus, $800 in labor (big job) and I bought the parts for like $250, he told me where to buy them. Lexus dealer estimate? Almost $3,000. Now...my wife had to pick me up and we had to share a car for a day, but with the savings we went on a vacation!

With the Jeep the cost difference isn't so distinct, but when it comes down to a time when you need some wear and tear related repairs...I trust my mechanic who I've known for years a hell of a lot more than some tech at the dealer who may or may not have worked on my car before, and some commission based service writer. These dealerships operate on this idea of "replace it early and often" when that may or may not be necessary. For instance...the Lexus dealer doesn't machine rotors...they always replace them.

You might not need that now, but you build that relationship now with the routine stuff.
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Old 03-27-2012, 09:50 PM
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Re: Best dealer for service

I chickened out and got the lifetime factory warranty, nicely priced online when I got it in September. So that kinda settles the debate for us, but no question that authorized dealer repairs and oem parts cost more. I don't know about now, but many years back Volvo was the worst, especially with parts pricing.

BTW, I got the 70k factory warranty with our prior Grand, and it paid for itself several times over.
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Old 03-28-2012, 09:29 AM
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Re: Best dealer for service

Does the lifetime factory warranty cover everything, including wear items like brakes, suspension, etc?
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Old 03-28-2012, 05:35 PM
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Re: Best dealer for service

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Does the lifetime factory warranty cover everything, including wear items like brakes, suspension, etc?
Wear items are not covered.
http://www.chryslerwarrantys.com/maximum_care.cfm
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Old 03-28-2012, 06:34 PM
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Re: Best dealer for service

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Does the lifetime factory warranty cover everything, including wear items like brakes, suspension, etc?
There's a $100-per-visit deductible on our WK2's lifetime factory warranty. So it's not only not for routine maintenance items, it is really for reasonably significant repairs -- or else you can let small problems accumulate and use the $100 deduction for one trip that fixes all the little items.

Mainly, we got a free transmission out of our last Grand's contract. Other than that, it would have been pretty much a breakeven proposition.
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