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General Discussion of preventative/corrective maintenance and other technical issues regarding your coach that are not covered in other Mechanic's Corner categories (ex. refrigerators, water heaters, and compressors).

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  #1  
Old 10-09-2009
Paul Paul is offline
Grand Curmudgeon
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: St. Augustine
Posts: 446
Default CAC -The rest of the story

This is one of the hardest “reports” I have written in some time.

Prevost Nashville has much good and bad going on. I will report my experience without opinion (yeah, sure lol).

As reported earlier, I took Ziggy to Prevost Nashville on the recommendation of a number of forum members. The reason going in for service was just a 100K mile “tune up”. In the process of the tuneup, it was discovered that my CAC was leaking and needed repair/replace. Since I felt the coolant temps were running a tad warm, I decided to pull the radiator and CAC stack and do them both.

Once the stack was out, I also suggested that all hydraulic lines and the hydraulic fan motor be rebuilt since everything was right there at their finger tips when the stack was removed. So far all is simple and going well…

The radiator and CAC were sent out to be “done”, and the CAC was determined unrepairable. Based on the suggestion of the techs at Prevost, we tried to find the original manufacturer of the CAC and through the efforts of many here, it was determined the Quality Stamping and Tube made the original. Contacted Quality, and they ASSURED me they made the unit and all through the 06 models. Order placed and off to home I went since this process would take 7-10 days plus shipping.

In the process of tracking down Quality, Prevost folks suggested that we get a new one made by Dura Lite in Canada, but…… Dura lite doesn’t sell direct but only through distributors. In Nashville the distributor is Coventry Detroit Diesel. Keep this in mind for later as it becomes an important fact in all this.

Due to unresponsiveness of Dura lite, the earlier mentioned decision to use Quality was made.

Zoom forward a couple of weeks and the new CAC arrives. Not only was it too small in all dimensions, it was warped from too much heat while welding and the tanks were the wrong shape to fit. The hunt starts anew!

Back to Dura Lite, and back to unresponsiveness. Due to having scheduled needs for Ziggy, I got more than a bit upset with no response and started looking for another supplier. Found an EXCELLENT company 200 miles from Nashville, Fleet Air Tech. These folks did the turnaround in 3 days and busted their butts for me. I can’t say enough good about them.
Since Prevost runs 24 hours a day mon-thurs, and they close at 3 on Fri with no weekends, it was decided that Fleet Air couldn’t get the new CAC to Prevost by 3 on Friday so would deliver first thing on Monday. Prevost was alerted to the timetable. Lyn and I planned to be there by the time the new CAC arrived.

Monday comes, the new CAC arrives, and someone in management decides to NOT pull the tech who had pulled the stack originally from another job to complete my work and get us out of there. Ziggy at this time had been there for almost 6 weeks. First thing Tues morn, the original tech, Jeff Parris, who is a sometimes contributor here, gets started. He works for about 4 hrs, get’s the stack back in Ziggy, and is called off my job and sent to VA to pick up a coach. Works stops on Ziggy…….After a very short while, I raised **** about my schedule and the fact that *my* work was stopped, but they wouldn’t stop work on someone else to finish me. They put more techs on Ziggy. At this point, all that remained was the installation of the shrouds around the stack and the hydraulic cooler. The process should have only taken a few hours, BUT, the tech had never worked on a BB stack, they didn’t take it apart and they had a jig saw puzzle to assemble. There is NO WAY anyone would have guessed the rest…it took 2 more shifts of techs to complete the job, and they ended up charging me 40+ hrs to do the work.

While there, I decided to replace my driver’s seat if I could find a deal, which I did. The last thing we did before leaving there for NH. Again, remember this little detail.

Since they had a hold on my credit card, they didn’t mind if I left before the bill was resolved.

One of the things I had asked them to fix while awaiting the new CAC was a small leak allowing rain to run down the inside of my windshield. They have the equipment to pressurize the coach and look for leaks outside.

One last item before my conclusion. While doing the tuneup and engine inspection, a small exhaust leak was found in a rusty pipe. It was fixed by replacing the band clamp with a new one repositioned a bit. Keep track of this too.

Before leaving Prevost I had a not too heated discussion with the #2 person at that facility and mentioned that there seemed to be WAYYYYYY too many hours required to do the job and that they should review the bill and adjust for the required hours since *they* pulled the only person who knew how to put it back together.

THE CONCLUSION If you are still reading this.

We finally got going around 1PM from Prevost. A couple of hours on the road and the rain started, can you see this coming? The water was running down the inside of the windshield. They charged me 4 hours and said they couldn’t find any leaks.

A little later, we smelled an all too familiar smell in the coach. We had this smell before when the exhaust had busted 4 years before and knew it was the heat on the bottom of the closet floor caused by exhaust gasses. We still had a 12 hr drive the next day to NH, and had to chance it, but moved critical things to take off the bus, by the front door in case of fire. Once at Franconia Notch, Randy and I were able to spot the exhaust blow out….right at the edge of the new band clamp. They never checked for the condition of the pipe that was rusted even though they replaced the band clamp due to a rusted pipe.

Remember the new driver’s seat? The tech and *I* removed the old one and installed the new one. 2 new holes had to be drilled, but other than that a very simple installation taking about 1-1.5 hrs.

We got home and a few days later they sent me the bill.
I won’t bore you with the details, but will share more privately if you are interested. The bill came to $13,337.73 *after* they adjusted for the extra time due to lack of knowledge to assemble the stack.

I called the service writer and gave him my interpretation of the bill. Next day, I get a call from Chris Miller at Prevost Nashville. He is the #3 person there. A real gentleman and realist. He patiently listened to my rant and then we went through the bill procedure by procedure. When broken down that way, he could see how I was overcharged, lapse time clocking and even parts overcharging. Did you know the S60 has 4 oil filters, NOT!

When I pointed out that Lyn and I were not only there for the full reassembly and other work, they had no defense for the hrs the tech said they put in. Remember the seat replacement that *I* helped perform? The tech put down 4 hrs for the 1-1.5 hrs it really took.

The next day I get a corrected bill, which I paid yesterday in the amount of $8,521.46.

OBSERVATIONS

Prevost Nashville is one of the cleanest shops I have ever been in. The techs for the most part are extremely well qualified and attentive. What I didn’t see was supervision, especially on second and third shifts.

The management at Prevost Nashville REALLY do care and are willing to listen to reason. Problem is, *WE* the customer shouldn’t have to keep track of their time and shouldn’t have to fight for fair pricing. I spoke with other customers, both tour drivers and RVers, who voiced concerns about their overcharging in that facility.

One last comment. Remember the Dura Lite non responsiveness? It would seem, according to high management at Prevost Nashville, that there is bad blood between them and Coventry Detroit Diesel. Seems that most of the employees at Prevost came from Coventry. They have very little reason to be helpful to Prevost, hence the unresponsiveness from the Dura Lite distributor (Coventry).

If you have the patience to insure you don’t get overcharged, this is one of the best repair facilities I have encountered.
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Paul LaZar
St. Augustine, FL
Former owner of Ziggy
97 wb43
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  #2  
Old 10-09-2009
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bwinter1946 bwinter1946 is offline
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Default

Wow, Thank you for this complete review. I learned a lot about the process by reading your tale.
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Madera, California
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  #3  
Old 10-09-2009
pgchd
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Paul,
Thank you so much for sharing this experience with the group. For me personally, it was INVALUABLE! I am so sorry to hear of the technical "misfortune's" with Ziggy but I feel you wrote a very "facts based" piece, non biased, great job! There's an old biker saying I cannot put on a public board but will share the humor with you the next time I see you, to make you laugh!!!!!!!!! take care and safe travels
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  #4  
Old 10-09-2009
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sanibel sanibel is offline
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Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Sanibel
Posts: 894
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Wow is right. Thank God for my little Plain Jane coach. Something that expensive breaks on my coach... I'd be having conniptions.

I frequently feels abused or worse when I take something to be fixed. I have found that for a lot of things, it is better to fix it myself. No arguments if it's not right, no paying somebody and having to watch. I am slow as ****, but the time I save not taking it somewhere (and especially if there is a return trip) makes up for it.
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  #5  
Old 10-09-2009
Paul Paul is offline
Grand Curmudgeon
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: St. Augustine
Posts: 446
Default

I hope no one thinks my post as bashing, because I didn't intend it that way. More of a caveat emptor.

It's clear that management is aware there is a problem and will work with you to correct any discrepancies. The shame is you have to be there to "keep them honest" by knowing what really was going on.

I can neither endorse them nor condemn them. Just sharing so others don't have similar problems.

Also, the final bill was a *fair* price, IMHO, for the amount of work and parts I requested. In the tuneup I had all belts, filters, and most hoses replaced. Had the transmission refilled with Transynd, had a rear hub seal replaced and a few other things. Others that only had CAC's done could best say what that portion cost.
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Paul LaZar
St. Augustine, FL
Former owner of Ziggy
97 wb43
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  #6  
Old 10-09-2009
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Turbokitty Turbokitty is offline
Timberlake Products Group
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Clearwater
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Paul,

Good write up. You did the right thing by staying on top of "the game". Seems like when relying on someones elses "expertise", the consumers wallet seems to be what slips through the cracks first. I think we all have been there at one time or another? Ya told it like it was and seem to be pleased with the final outcome... Keep typing!

What does "IMHO" mean?
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Timberlake Products Group, Inc.
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  #7  
Old 10-09-2009
bubblerboy64 bubblerboy64 is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2008
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Default

That's quite a tail Paul. I tend to be entirely too easy about stuff. I just had and experience with a vehicle I'll hack over with you when next we meet we can compare notes, what I did as to what you would have done.

Certainly reinforces the notion that we have strength in numbers here times two. First, the fact that dealers, mechanics and parts supplies do know that word of mouth either literally or by these types of forums can help or hurt them. Secondly, I would have had to rely on the more experience heads to even know what was needed and what would be expected as reasonable charges.

Thanks for posting. Rather incredible for me to think that you talked yourself into a 5k savings. I am afraid I would have been too stupid, naive or just afraid to raise the issue. Perhaps not with a couple of you guys backing me up. Strength in numbers again. John
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  #8  
Old 10-09-2009
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gcyeaw gcyeaw is offline
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Paul,
You were more that fair with your comments. You just indicated that one must pay attention to the bill and raise questions if it seems out of line. The fact that they made appropriate adjustments indictes managements integrety. I am also certain that your experience of running a business with integrety helped with your presentation of the facts.

I remember way back when when I had a VW squareback. I took it into a local shop for a bad cylinder seal. They had to take the engine out to do the job. When I went to the shop, while the engine was out, they sugested I have the clutch replaced. I thought that was a good idea. When I got the bill they charged me flat rate, which means they charged twice for taking the engine out. Once for the cylinder fix and once for the clutch.
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  #9  
Old 10-09-2009
markusfmeyer markusfmeyer is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Turbokitty View Post
What does "IMHO" mean?
In My Honest Opinion?
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  #10  
Old 10-09-2009
Paul Paul is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: St. Augustine
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Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by markusfmeyer View Post
In My Honest Opinion?
Close. In My Humble Opinion
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Paul LaZar
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Former owner of Ziggy
97 wb43
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