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Shaggy98
Senior Advisor

Implement Dealerships

Does anyone have bad luck with service from implement dealerships?  Over the last 3 years, two different dealerships that I do business with have really caused me headaches.

 

1. Dealership 1 setup my Magnum tractor with a hydraulic case drain for my planter only to plumb it in wrong with too much back pressure and I blew all the o-rings out of the valve body.  I only had 5 hours of planting left before I was finished.  While the tractor was being repaired, rain moved in for 10 days and I almost missed the final plant date for some grain sorghum acres.

 

2. My dad put his combine thru the same dealership (against my advice) for a winter service inspection.  After a $12,000 repair bill, the machine was in worse shape when we got it home.  He cut 290 acres of wheat and went through 18 gallons of antifreeze coolant and 10 gallons of engine oil.

 

3. Took my sprayer to a different dealership to have a new main tank installed.  When I got it home to begin filling it with water, I discovered they failed to install a 1-1/2" plug in the bottom of the tank.  So I guess that means they never performed a leak check of all other ports on the tank.  Since it was the weekend, two more days are shot and the weeds continue to grow.

 

Maybe some of this is my fault for not inspecting the workmanship before I bring them home, but for the price they charge I didn't think I should need to.  What exactly does the service manager do, does he not give the machines a final inspection before customer pickup?

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7 Replies
Nebrfarmr
Veteran Advisor

Re: Implement Dealerships

That is one reason that I do all possible work, myself.  I seem to have less screw-ups, and I also learn some of the 'quirks' of the machine while doing it.

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Re: Implement Dealerships

Did your dad know it was using anti-freeze and oil before it went into the shop? It almost sounds like they didn't do anything at all to the engine...If the dealership was supposed to fix the engine..and it performed like that, I'd be looking for an adjustment on my bill.

 

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Shaggy98
Senior Advisor

Re: Implement Dealerships

It wasn't using any oil or antifreeze before it went thru shop.  It had a small oil leak on the front seal which they had to pull the engine to replace.  I am guessing they only had the pan hand tight.  I realized there were major issues about 2 hours into harvest.  Called the dealer and their answer was they would stand behind it and they would provide oil and antifreeze to get me thru harvest and put it back thru shop at that time.  I still don't know where the antifreeze was going.  They tried to stick me with a water pump replacement but I told them if they charged me for it that it was going to be the most expensive water pump replacement they ever performed.  So far so good.  This particular dealership has been in existence for about 50 years, but the service department has always, and I mean always, been their achilles heel.  They are only located 1 mile up the road from me other wise I would have given up on them years ago.  I think the only reason their doors remain open is because for a small dealership, they really cater to the custom harvesters during the winter months for replacement equipment.  I've seen harvesters dealing there that there headquarters were nearly 2000 miles away.  Very frustrating.

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onebigbyrd
Veteran Contributor

Re: Implement Dealerships

i work in a cat lift truck dealership and we c ant find help even to apply. so if they are like us they are stuck with the help they have even if it is bad help

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Shaggy98
Senior Advisor

Re: Implement Dealerships

I'm no rocket scientist, but seems to me money talks.  if you pay $10/hour you get $10 labor.  If you pay $20/hour you get better results.  When I was working at a mfg plant, they had low wages and plenty of employee turnover.  I've since switched jobs to one that pays about 4x as much, and we have no turnover at all.  The last people we hired replaced employee's that were here 30+ years and retired.  That was over 5 years ago.  Low budget employee's have the ability to weed themselves out.

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onebigbyrd
Veteran Contributor

Re: Implement Dealerships

well said shaggy

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siloguy
Frequent Contributor

Re: Implement Dealerships

I once had a clutch job on a 130 hp. tractor. I got it back and used it for a while and soon noticed that some of the bellhousing bolts were falling out. The ones on the left were still holding but all the ones on the top, right and bottom were falling out. The service guy mumbled something about getting a phone call after tightening a few bolts and he forgot to go back and tighten the rest later. I found and tightened the rest and it held up for a year, but then the flywheel came off the crankshaft. Zipping the bolts back in with an impact wrench wasn't the proper method of attaching a flywheel after it was ground. I fixed that screw-up too. I had the dealer do the clutch job in the first place because I was busy, but it took me more time to fix the carnage than if I did the whole job myself in the first place.

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