This is going to basically be another rants and raves article, but this time it is going to be about our parts department at the dealership. Normally, everything runs smoothly. We have a great parts manager and most of the counter guys are fun to be around and are knowledgeable. We do have one guy, though, who fails to fit the bill. Lucky me, I got to work with him this past Saturday. I’ll leave names out, just to keep this anonymous, but I’d really like to slam him all over the internet! LOL!
This is the guy who everyone avoids. When any of the technicians come into the parts department, they head straight for one of the other counter guys to help them. I do the same. In fact, if as I’m walking to the parts counter and notice only him there, I’ll turn around and wait until I see one of the better guys to go to. Everyone complains about him, even to the manager who knows he kind of sucks but can’t seem to find a replacement for him. Wrong parts and mis-information is what you usually get from this guy. This past Saturday was no different…
Now, we all know already that I work at a Chevrolet dealership, and GM cars are our main source of work. For a parts guy who supposedly has 20 years of experience, you’d think he could look up the right parts for a Chevy, his own brand! I had a very common vehicle to work on, a 2005 Chevrolet Impala. Probably one of the biggest lines GM has produced, this ‘W’ body car, as we call them, is the same platform as the Monte Carlo, Grand Prix, Intrigue, Lumina, etc. All basically the same drivetrain and chassis-wise, save for the outside appearance.
I had a regular brake job to do on this particular Impala, no big deal right? Wrong! I was to replace the front pads and rotors, and the rear pads and rotors. Brakes are probably one of the most common things we replace on cars and trucks as they are the biggest wear and tear parts on the car. Our parts guys look up brakes many, many times a day for all sorts of vehicles. This should have been a no-brainer for any parts guy with any experience. So after my service writer sells the job, he gives the repair order to parts and he pulls my pads and rotors for the front and rear of the vehicle. I go in, grab the stack of ‘gravy’ (easy work), and head to the car, which I have apart and waiting.
First off, after opening the boxes for the front rotors, I noticed they were pretty small and only had four lug holes. These probably were for a Chevy Cobalt. I brought the rotors back to parts and asked for the correct ones. This time he brings me two bigger boxes, but unfortunately they turned out be another set of rear rotors which I already had! Now I’m getting a tad angry at the time he’s wasting for me. The third time was a charm, and he finally brought out the correct front rotors. I did the front brakes on the car and moved to the rear next. I knew I had the correct rear rotors, but after opening the box for the rear brake pads, I found another set of front pads! Another trip back to the parts counter to complain and hopefully get the correct rear pads. FAIL! What he brought me next was wrong again! It was rear pads, but they had no hardware with them. I needed the clips that the pads ride in to do the job correctly, as the other ones were rusted and bent. So again, it took a third try for him to get me the right stuff. I finally was able to finish up the job after about six trips to the parts department.
This is something that doesn’t have to happen. The only result of this issue is me losing time doing my job, which costs me money. I could have had the customer well on their way probably an hour earlier if it wasn’t for our fine parts counter person! These are just some of the things we as technicians have to deal with on a daily basis to keep you, the customer, happy and in a properly operating vehicle!
Let’s hope for a better start to the week!!!