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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Did you ever have one of those days (weeks)?

My 1.8T was coming up on 5000 miles last week. I had six quarts of Valvoline 5w-40 synthetic in the trunk ($5/quart), and called my dealer about an oil change. No times available that worked with my work schedule for a few weeks (I did wait too long to call).

OK, I have 3 mechanic options:
1 ) Dealer - can't get in before 5800 miles or so. I'd rather not wait that long.
2 ) My primary mechanic - 25 minutes away. PITA for just an oil change
3 ) Local shop where my wife gets her oil changes and tire rotations (3 location shop, not a quick change place).

OK, I pick #3. Roll in, they can squeeze me in and do the oil and filter. I leave 5 quarts in the front, and tell them it won't use all of it. "Yup, these take a little over 4 quarts".

Get the car back with the oil bottles, 4 empties and one half full. *SIGH* They've put in 1/4 to 1/2 a quart too much. OK, I'll let it settle for a day, and check out where it is (stupid :crazy:).

Brain fade. Forget to check for 3 days. Finally remember to check as I'm leaving the house Tuesday morning. 1.5" up the dipstick. WTF?? A half quart goes THAT far up? That's stupid. What's going on? I'm late for work, can't spend more time looking, so I go to work.

Come home that night. Get out small pump. Pump 1/4 quart into old Coke bottle. Check level. 1.5" up dipstick. :???:

Pump more, now about 1/2 quart in bottle. Check dipstick. 1.25" up dipstick. :suspicio:

Keep pumping. 1.5 quarts later, I'm back in range. :shock:

Do the math, assuming 1/2 quart was the excess from the oil I brought. Where did the other oil come from? And, damn, that stuff is AWFULLY dark after just a few hundred miles.

Blinding flash of obvious occurs. Look at engine. Find OEM VW filter still on car. The mechanic never changed the filter, and just poured how much oil he "knew" went in into the engine without ever looking at the dipstick. :evil: :mad:

Arrrgh! I was driving on 4.5 quarts synthetic + 1 quart dirty dino for 300 miles! :puke:

So, back we go. Manager very apologetic. Free oil and filter change (using my oil again!!). Also, next one is free. Swell.

So, my bad for :
1 ) not using MY mechanic
2 ) not checking level IMMEDIATELY
3 ) not looking at filter sooner.

OK, next time, I'm bringing my OWN oil and filter (plus, I get the oversized filter that way). Assuming I let them at my Passat again. I'm not sure the free labor is worth it. In fact, I'm pretty sure it's not.

STUPID! STUPID! STUPID!
 

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Let me just say, never go to Jiffy Lube. I have done that a couple of times. Sometimes when we didn't have the filter, the boss would just drain it then refill it. He still charged for a full change though.
 

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The dude that did your oil change was NOT a "mechanic".

Call the BBB in your city and report that place. Those people are probably routinely ripping off customers by not changing the filters. You were ripped off. Don't ever go back.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
DrivinAJetta said:
Yup - if you absolutely must go to one of those quickie places, and you dont want to look paranoid by marking the oil filter, at least make a note of its orientation.
Wouldn't go to a quickie place - this is a place we've (mostly my wife) been using for low-end stuff for a few years. Not any longer, however.

Actually, maybe one more time. My wife's Subie is due for a change next week. Last one was by the dealer during warranty work, so it has a Subaru OEM filter on it now. Be interesting to see if it comes back with the same one still on it.



Chris30vB5.5 said:
The dude that did your oil change was NOT a "mechanic".

Call the BBB in your city and report that place. Those people are probably routinely ripping off customers by not changing the filters. You were ripped off. Don't ever go back.
As I said, one more time with my wife's car. If the same thing happens to her, it switches from "accident" to systemic.
 

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VWinOrlando said:
what an idiot mechanic
Just idiot, not mechanic. That's why I stand and watch EVERYTHING anybody does on my car and do most anything myself. Scary thing is he is out doing that crap to other cars and maybe the next guy won't catch it as quick as you did....
 

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Correct me if I'm wrong but isn't the capacity of the 1.8t 3.7-3.9 qts depending on the motor?

Sounds to me like you just had a qt. and a half too much of your $5 / bottle oil! W

I certainly wouldn't hand them 5 qts. again when it takes less than 4!
 

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spd33 said:
Correct me if I'm wrong but isn't the capacity of the 1.8t 3.7-3.9 qts depending on the motor?

Sounds to me like you just had a qt. and a half too much of your $5 / bottle oil! W

I certainly wouldn't hand them 5 qts. again when it takes less than 4!
I would give them 4 qtz, and top it off yourself it needed.
 

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Definitely DIY next time. Buy an extractor. The $50 is worth the aggrivation you'll save. Save your oil receipts so you can show the dealer if there is ever a warranty issue down the line.

With 5000 miles, I'm assuming you have a 2004 model - your oil capacity is 3.7 liters total. Four liters is overfull, never mind five.

If you have to drop it off, leave them 3.5 liters (three full + one half-empty bottle). Tell them you'll top it off when you pick it up. But, I'll bet you won't need to top off: 3.5 will do it.

P.S. The factory filters can be hard to get off on the first change. (There's gotta be a guy at the factory with "popeye" forearms putting these things on.) I'll bet they tried once and gave up.
 

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I go to my local Jiffy Lube sometimes when I'm short on time, but I bring my own Redline and my new K&N filter. I don't think they like me because being a quality control inspector I am very suspicious of any potential problem, so I just stand right there and watch them do every step. They usually say "okay sir, you can go sit right in the waiting room if you'd like" I say "nah that's ok" :) I usually point out stuff like, "hey can I see how the old oil looks" or "is the belly pan back on correctly?" or "so is the new filter back on with no leaks?" or "how does the drain plug gasket look?" and finally "so how does the oil level look?". Funny thing is now they know me (they may laugh about the picky guy with the passat), but they take pretty good care of me now and even ask what mod I'm doing to the car/engine next. So see you can "train" some people to do good work.

I may be getting old and a little suspicious of things, but I try to anticipate problems before they happen. I have seen so many mechanics and people working on stuff for me that said they fixed something and actually did not. I kind of expect that I need to follow up after anyone's work.
It's a world full of people in a hurry and not paying attention to our cars because the car is not theirs and they are paid to hurry up. When you do find someone who does excelent work and cares...TELL THEM! and support them with your business.
Sorry to be long winded :roll:
 

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Spooner said:
I go to my local Jiffy Lube sometimes when I'm short on time, but I bring my own Redline and my new K&N filter. I don't think they like me because being a quality control inspector I am very suspicious of any potential problem, so I just stand right there and watch them do every step. They usually say "okay sir, you can go sit right in the waiting room if you'd like" I say "nah that's ok" :) I usually point out stuff like, "hey can I see how the old oil looks" or "is the belly pan back on correctly?" or "so is the new filter back on with no leaks?" or "how does the drain plug gasket look?" and finally "so how does the oil level look?". Funny thing is now they know me (they may laugh about the picky guy with the passat), but they take pretty good care of me now and even ask what mod I'm doing to the car/engine next. So see you can "train" some people to do good work.

I may be getting old and a little suspicious of things, but I try to anticipate problems before they happen. I have seen so many mechanics and people working on stuff for me that said they fixed something and actually did not. I kind of expect that I need to follow up after anyone's work.
It's a world full of people in a hurry and not paying attention to our cars because the car is not theirs and they are paid to hurry up. When you do find someone who does excelent work and cares...TELL THEM! and support them with your business.
Sorry to be long winded :roll:
True words of wisdom, but better yet, tell their boss as well. I like nothing better than hearing that my staff did something well or right and I make sure the staff person knows about any compliments we get. :bow:
 

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YES! tell their supervisor or even the owner if you can! I try to "catch" people doing things right too.

I like the fact I mention my quality control experience and look how I spelled excelLent! :???: oh well... brain is at 12 psi boost...typing skills are in Park!
 
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