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Thread: Terrible service at BMW of Sterling

                  
   
  1. #1
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    Terrible service at BMW of Sterling

    It has come to my conclusion that BMW of Sterling is the last place I will ever take my BMW for warranty service. Back in March, the seat heater in my 2009 128i convertible stopped working on the drivers side. I took it in in mid April when I had to get a state inspection and a few and possibly an oil change. The service advisor Mark Kwon started out ok, but when it came to my extended warranty (EZ Care Total Care bought from BMW of Fairfax when I bought the car used), he said that there were issues with how much the warranty company was willing to pay and that I would have to pay the difference. On top of that, I was told that the heating element was built into the leather and had to be special ordered from Germany. Ok I can understand having to order it from Germany but I was curious about the difference. When I bought the warranty I was told I would only have to pay my deductible which is $250. So I called EZ Care and they said there was a discrepancy in the labor charges. BMW of Sterling was stating it would take 3.9 hours, but the national times that EZ Care was stating was 2.2 hours. They said if BMW could provide documentation (The KSD report) for the labor times they would take that into consideration and most likely adjust to fit the allocated times. Contacted Mark Kwon again back at Sterling BMW and he said he was trying to work on getting it lowered as much as possible. I did get my car back after the inspection and fluid changes but was charged a $150 diagnostic feel which I was told would not be included until the work was done. In the mean time I got an email to rate my service at Sterling BMW. I wrote a negative review to them and got their so called Customer Advocate Louis Lee to contact me. I explained everything including sending him copies of the warranty that I bought through a BMW dealership. Days went by and got no response to my phone calls, and when I did was told lies about how he had been in touch with EZ Care but have not heard anything back. I called EZ Care again and said the last contact was an email out to Mark Kwon on April 14th for the KSD report. BY now it was already the end of April. After finding out that Mr. Lee has been lying to me I tried going to the Service Manager Mike Choung. It took multiple attempts to get him to return my calls and basically got a "I'll look into it". I finally heard back from Mark Kwon back on May 15th that the seat had arrived and scheduled. I asked if they had gotten anywhere with the warranty issue and he said no. I told him I was not going to pay anything other than the deductible and if they were not going to honor it, then I wanted a refund for the diagnostic fee that I was charged and asked to speak to Mike Choung the service manager. After multiple voicemails left for Mike Choung, he finally said that BMW would absolve the difference and my only charge would be the $250 deductible. I told him that I would drop off my car on May 20th so they could fix it on the 21st. I was told I would get my car back on the 21st and I was happy until I called at 2pm on the 21st to find out the status of my car. Mark told me the car was done but they were waiting on payment from the warranty company. He said it would take a few days and I told him that it was unacceptable since I was told I would get my car back on the 21st. He said he couldn't release the car without payment so I hung up and called EZ Care again. They said as long as Sterling BMW was just asking for the approved amount they were willing to pay, the process was to pay the dealer by credit card and be done within an hour. I called them at 2:30p. By 5pm EZ Care had not received any type of payment request from BMW of Sterling. I called EZ Care again this morning at 9:30am and they said they will push the payment through for the amount they approved. I called BMW of Sterling and still have not heard back from them. I have left messages with the service advisor Mark Kown, the service manager Mike Choung and the service and parts director Dan Sheehan (who has yet to return any of my calls over the past few weeks). It is obvious that BMW of Sterling is out to take as much money as they can from us. When I asked Mark Kwon about the KSD report, he said he couldn't send it to them because it listed the labor times for the BMW warranty, not 3rd party warranties. Does that mean the repair technicians work harder when it's the BMW warranty and not as hard so it takes longer for 3rd party warranties? It should take the same amount of time regardless, as well as the cost of labor.

    I am trying to find out who is above Dan Sheehan on the management chain, if anyone knows, it would be appreciated if you could forward his name and contact info if possible.

    I honestly hope that others have not had this experience with BMW dealerships. I am however going to go to BMW of Fairfax for my next service as they actually sold me the warranty and I won't have to hear the crap from BMW of Sterling how it's a 3rd party warranty and not the BMW warranty.

    Robert
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    Robert
    2009 128i Convertible

  2. #2
    Senior Member pseto's Avatar
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    Sounds like you definitely had a bad experience. You could always try our Ombudsman:

    https://www.bmwcca.org/ombudsmen (you have to be logged into the website to see the names and contact info)
    Paul Seto - NCC Board Member & Social Chairman

    2011 Mineral White M3 Coupe ZCP
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  3. #3
    Wow... horrible service. I had a similar experience on the sales side when I was going to purchase a 135i from them... good thing I didn't. Hopefully this gets resolved in some fashion for you.

    -M

  4. #4
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    Here is an update. Late Friday afternoon, I was notified my car was ready to be picked up and also got a call from Dan Sheehan. I met with him once I got there and got everything worked out. He explained to me how all BMW dealerships are independently owned and that each dealership makes special deals with the extended warranty companies that they sell. Each dealership has different vendors so it comes down to a business decision if it's worth keeping the customer for $XXX.XX or let them go somewhere else. Had the service advisor or even the Customer Advocate explained it to me that way then I would have felt different. Now I know that going forward, and I plan on giving BMW of Sterling another chance. Now I know going forward that not all of my labor from the extended warranty may not be covered, but at least it seems I can try and haggle with the service department. I even have the personal cell # of the Directory of the Service and Parts department in case I have any issues in the future. So we shall see.

    On a side note, I'm up for my front brakes and an oil change in about 2000 miles. I got a quote from RTT for about $550 for front break replacements (not sure what is involved with the routine break maintenance, but my car has 45,000 miles). Does that seem high or average. Sadly I know nothing about cars or I would try and do it myself.
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    Robert
    2009 128i Convertible

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by pseto View Post
    Sounds like you definitely had a bad experience. You could always try our Ombudsman:

    https://www.bmwcca.org/ombudsmen (you have to be logged into the website to see the names and contact info)
    Paul,

    Thank you so much for that information. I didn't even know that was an option, guess I should look more into what benefits there are for being a BMWCCA member.
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    Robert
    2009 128i Convertible

  6. #6
    Senior Member pseto's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rkruck View Post
    Here is an update. Late Friday afternoon, I was notified my car was ready to be picked up and also got a call from Dan Sheehan. I met with him once I got there and got everything worked out. He explained to me how all BMW dealerships are independently owned and that each dealership makes special deals with the extended warranty companies that they sell. Each dealership has different vendors so it comes down to a business decision if it's worth keeping the customer for $XXX.XX or let them go somewhere else. Had the service advisor or even the Customer Advocate explained it to me that way then I would have felt different. Now I know that going forward, and I plan on giving BMW of Sterling another chance. Now I know going forward that not all of my labor from the extended warranty may not be covered, but at least it seems I can try and haggle with the service department. I even have the personal cell # of the Directory of the Service and Parts department in case I have any issues in the future. So we shall see.

    On a side note, I'm up for my front brakes and an oil change in about 2000 miles. I got a quote from RTT for about $550 for front break replacements (not sure what is involved with the routine break maintenance, but my car has 45,000 miles). Does that seem high or average. Sadly I know nothing about cars or I would try and do it myself.
    Sounds like a promising situation, hope it all works out for you.

    As far as your brakes and oil change, this is where it truly pays off for being a member. Our DIY program is the perfect solution. I would encourage you to look into it b/c those are 2 of the easiest jobs you can learn to do yourself (not to mention the $$ savings). There's plenty of youtube videos and BMW forums that you can research to get an idea of what it entails, and then sign up for our DIYs and observe someone doing it. Then you can easily do it yourself on a lift and have someone there to guide you if needed.
    Paul Seto - NCC Board Member & Social Chairman

    2011 Mineral White M3 Coupe ZCP
    2000 Titanium Silver M Roadster
    2011 Space Gray 328ix Sedan

    Check out our NCC Facebook Page

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