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Dienstag, 28. September 2010, 05:05

Advice on a shady mechanic

My old
foreign car that I rarely drive had the NYS inspection due. Car needed a new
brake line and two different Astorian mechanics refused to do the work. I was
told that type of job involved also replacing the fuel lines, which could be
very tricky.

The third mechanic in Astoria claimed the other two mechanics were wrong. He
said that it was still a good, well made car and he'd replace the brake &
fuel lines and do the re-inspection for $285. I made it very clear to him that
I am recently laid off, newly single female car novice and I had to borrow the

He had the car 4 business days and when I finally picked it up, he said he
didn't finish it...but would throw in a "free undercoating" and an
oil change if I brought it back another day.

I drove the car a few times after that, noticing that it was burning more gas
than usual.

It wasn't until I was stuck in traffic on the BQE in 90+ degree blazing
afternoon heat that I realized the car was leaking gas.

I got very frightened for my safety and immediately took it back to the
mechanic that did the job.

After two days of calls, he claimed it needed a special "spiral line"
and he would eat the cost.

After 4 business days, he wouldn't get on the phone with me so I walked there.
He then demanded a $100 more "because the gas leak was coming from up
above the gas tank".

My car wasn't leaking gas when I dropped it off to have the lines fixed...it
was a brake line problem; he suggested doing the fuel lines in the original

Now he wanted more money after ignoring me for days; in addition to being
completely unapologetic about risking my safety.

When I refused to pay him the $100, he handed me the keys and told me to leave.

Up until this point, I had been very nice and non-confrontational...but I wasn't
going to drive away in a car leaking gas after getting the run-around for a

I mentioned that Astoria was sort-of a small town and this wouldn't be
"good business". There were other customers there, including another
man that was angry about his car not being correctly fixed as well.

The shop owner took my car keys back and refused to give me an estimate of when
he would fix it. I stormed out, too angry because he had also literally spit a
huge chunk of pizza on me while chewing during this somewhat heated exchange.

(It's not so much the $100 as it is his condescending attitude & negligence
that is infuriating...I'm rarely confrontational)

So now my car is still leaking gas on a street in Astoria...and a man that
clearly hates my guts is supposed to fix it...

Any advice?

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