• February 18, 2016 at 3:20 pm#64787
    hartcoauto
    Member

    How would you have a customer understand that there is no way to predetermine a failure on a customer supplied part? We have a policy of not warranty labor when the customer supplied the part however, I have a customer that supplied a cheap line s-belt and within a week it is squealing due to high spots in the belt. He brought back to us to find noise which was the belt, I explained that sometimes a lower quality belt will make noise and we would recommend a different brand of belt. He approved the belt but when he came to pick it up and I charged labor again complained that we should have know and told him the cheap belt he supplied would make noise. I have tried explaining that we don’t have a warranty on customer supplied parts but he feels it was our fault for not forecasting a noisy belt. Any solutions without saying tough luck?

    February 18, 2016 at 5:09 pm#74288
    Tom Ham
    Participant

    Here is how it would be handled here. Labor – no charge, customer marked no follow-up, move on to making money. 

    Too much potential stress in this business to spend much mental effort on something like this. As for the cost, Dave Ramsey refers to stuff like this as “stupid tax” – I’ve paid plenty over the years. 
    Then review your policies on customer supplied parts. We used to go back and forth on it, but several years ago we said “no more customer supplied parts” and are quite happy with our decision. 

    “We only install parts that we supply due to issues related to warranty, liability and insurance. I really wish I could help you, but that’s just how it is for businesses in 2016.”

    Tom - Shop Owner since 1978

    February 18, 2016 at 6:32 pm#74289
    hartcoauto
    Member

    Tom,

    Thanks for the reminder that it is o.k. to fire a customer. After taking a breather, count to 10 lol, I agree the lost labor is not worth the stress. No matter how many times a customer is reminded that they will have to pay labor again for their defective part it just doesn’t seem to be worth arguing with someones failed memory.

    We are changing our policy to a “no more customer supplied parts” today.

    February 23, 2016 at 9:01 am#74291
    joefordyce
    Member

    There are very few exceptions, but our rule is that WE will supply the parts to do the repairs properly, or we aren’t doing the repair.  Once you let someone furnish their own parts, you lose control – of quality, warranty, and profit.

    What exceptions I will allow:  part is a specialty or rare item that cannot be sourced easily (and I have a longtime rapport with the customer), or a longtime customer, who usually does their own work, is not able to do the work for some reason like a recent surgery or something (Hey, I need pads but I can’t bend over for 6 weeks – can you help me out?)  I have a few customers who do their own work as good as we do, but stuff happens sometimes.

    You’ll be happy with your new policy, Dwayne.

    February 23, 2016 at 10:18 am#74293
    FNGJWS
    Member

    When explaining to customers why we no longer install customer-provided parts, I also mention the “P” word along with the usual liability/quality/warranty rationale. I want people to understand that unless we make a profit on the parts we install, we won’t be around to take care of their automotive service needs in the future, and you wouldn’t want THAT to happen, would you?

    February 23, 2016 at 12:36 pm#74294
    Linc Lewis
    Participant

    We will never tell a customer no. We will install customer supplied parts.  We will assist every customer in any way including bringing a vehicle to the dealer for warranty work or recalls. We will charge customers for any and all services we provide and generally our customers are happy and willing to get and pay for our services.

    However, when customers supply their own parts our SOP is that on the repair order it is clearly spelled out
    ( with a canned job ) that our shop does not offer, nor does the customer have, any warranty on labor for a customer supplied part failure. The reasons are many, we all know them and you can tell the customer if they ask why no warranty.

     In addition, our service advisers will determine the lost gross profit on a customer supplied part and those dollars and cents will be added to the labor charge for that customer supplied part installation. So the bottom line is the shop is not harmed by customer supplied parts.

    You can always allow the SAs to discount that gross profit surcharge so at least the customer is aware they got a discount and management is allowed to track discount costs to insure they remain within the metric allowed.

    February 23, 2016 at 2:31 pm#74296
    bellauto
    Member

    M. LENCI

    On occasion we get customerss wanting to supply their own parts. Being our policy that all customers leave our shop with a smile will make us bend with the wind at times especially if a return customer. We will try to charge enough labor to cover the loss on parts profit and also keep our shop busy. If the part is of a questionable quality we wll explain this to the customer and make a decision to install it or not. Also we inform them that there is no warranty on the install labor and tell the customer that if it does not fix his problem the diagnostic clock starts ticking.  
    February 23, 2016 at 7:45 pm#74297
    Joseph Van syoc
    Participant

    This is why I generally don’t use customer supplied parts, and on the rare occasion that I make an exception, the customer is informed up front that there is NO warranty parts or labor for their part. PERIOD.  Hate to be that way, but they money they save is not going to come out of my pocket

    February 23, 2016 at 8:15 pm#74299
    Joseph Van syoc
    Participant

    I still recall the slow day when a previous employer agreed to install a customer supplied thermostat, and the ensuing battle with both that customer and the parts house where he bought it when it failed, the engine overheated and required some extensive repairs. The parts house insisted it was installed incorrectly (without ever seeing the vehicle of course!) NO THANK YOU.  Nice to know that customer saved all of three bucks on the part though……………..

    March 1, 2016 at 10:02 pm#74303
    Bob Ward
    Participant

    When a customer wants to supply parts you have lost their respect. They obviously feel you are not being fair with them. As professional repair shops we are not in the commodity business, we are in the service business.If a customer asks to install their part it is up to us to educate them as to why we have their best interests at heart by using our experience to select the best parts for their vehicles based on our knowledge. If for some reason they do not take your advice then let them go elsewhere and learn what we know the hard way.

    March 2, 2016 at 6:43 am#74304
    John Bamford
    Participant

    The problem with any exception is that, THAT is the one that causes a problem. Too many stories from clients.

    March 2, 2016 at 8:13 am#74305
    JeffreyD
    Member

    Customer supplied parts? NO. I spent an extra afternoon trying to make a customer supplied clutch fit. It had a burr in the spline and we pulled the clutch an extra 2 times before we found the burr. When I questioned the customer of the parts origin he laughed and said it was the cheapest part he could find online. Not cheap for my shop! With the abundance of counterfeit parts and cheap junk that just doesn’t fit we refuse customer parts. We patiently explain to the customer why that’s our decision and they usually understand. On top of that the parts supplier won’t pay labor charges if we don’t buy the part from them so even if the customer buys the part from our supplier it won’t come with a labor guarantee. Counterfeit parts are a note worth considering. Counterfeiters are copying not only the part but also the box. You might think you found a brand name on line for half BUT. We only order online from suppliers we trust. I agree with Toms comment “We only install parts that we supply due to issues related to warranty,
    liability and insurance. I really wish I could help you, but that’s
    just how it is for businesses in 2016.”

    March 2, 2016 at 3:08 pm#74307
    jamcneely
    Member

    “According to state law we are responsible for the correct fit and function of any part installed on a customers vehicle. So I would rather supply you the best quality part at a fair price which comes with a 2 year 24k mile nationwide warranty. The warranty covers towing and lodging at no cost to you. We will find another quality shop for warranty repairs if ever needed. This allows you to drive with confidence knowing your car was repaired with the best parts and service available.” This typically helps the customer understand we are here for them and are looking out for the best interest.

    March 2, 2016 at 6:48 pm#74309
    danrsauto
    Member

    I would write a receipt for labor for him to take back to his parts house for labor reimbursement.

    If you would like to keep him for a client and think he is over the bring the parts in mentality – Then offer him a labor credit on the next repair need . This way if he does not come back you our out nothing . Sometimes it does take an experience to take a [ D ] client and make them into a [ A] Client. 

    Thanks Dan  Dan R’s Automotive

    March 4, 2016 at 2:20 pm#74312
    jerseysure
    Member

    Installing customer’s parts has gone south on me 95% of the time. I just won’t do it anymore. I don’t feel I deserve the added stress or liability that comes with it. We are busy enough with people that allow us to conduct business the way we need to. When customer’s ask, I tell them I won’t do it and refer them to the owner. He hates not taking $ so he sometimes allows it. When a problem arises (which it often does), I direct them to the owner. No stress on me. I try and do the right thing the best I can every day, and I don’t think installing customer supplied parts is the right thing for anyone.

    March 8, 2016 at 12:23 pm#74318
    John Natale
    Participant

    I think that we need to look at who is asking for the repair with their own parts. But understand that no matter what we have them sign, we will ultimately be dragged into a law suite if the part fails and causes injury. And that point we loose because we will not have the backing of the part supplier either. And a judge and Jury are lay people, as far as they are concerned we are the pros. and we need to advise them as such. So for that reason except for a part that is purchased and delivered directly to our shop as a special order from a dealer we pass on Customer supplied parts.

    March 8, 2016 at 4:04 pm#74320
    PAPShop
    Member

    Generally – no customer supplied parts for the reasons most other posters have stated.  However in the few exceptions, an additional 1/2 hour labor will be charged to research the part to insure it is correct for the application.   Have had customers come in with the wrong part.

    By doing this, we do not waste time installing wrong/cheap parts and most of the time there is little to no money saved by the customer providing the part.

    March 15, 2016 at 3:48 pm#74322
    roebigd
    Participant

    Here is the form I wrote up for the customer to sign and I photo copy their drivers license to it also so there is no mistake who signed the form. Since making up this form not one customer has decided to use their cheap part.

    December 16, 2016 at 10:22 pm#74635

    My boss did a favor for one of his best customers, one of the customer’s employees wanted to have rotors and pads installed on the employee’s car.

    The parts were installed but the rotors were out of round, warped. The customer’s employee was ticked off, my boss offered to take them off but the part seller would not replace them unless the parts were shipped back first.

    While all this is going on, my boss made a quick painful decision on the spot, in order to save the account, he replaced the rotors for free and sent the employee on his way.

    I asked why did he do that, he said that he made an initial mistake, but having the employee miss work and have the shop being bad mouthed was not an option, just bite the bullet and never do customer supplied parts again.  

    May 5, 2019 at 8:24 pm#88769

    Customer supplied parts? NO. I spent an extra afternoon trying to make a customer supplied clutch fit. It had a burr in the spline and we pulled the clutch an extra 2 times before we found the burr. When I questioned the customer of the parts origin he laughed and said it was the cheapest part he could find online. Not cheap for my shop! With the abundance of counterfeit parts and cheap junk that just doesn’t fit we refuse customer parts. We patiently explain to the customer why that’s our decision and they usually understand. On top of that the parts supplier won’t pay labor charges if we don’t buy the part from them so even if the customer buys the part from our supplier it won’t come with a labor guarantee. Counterfeit parts are a note worth considering. Counterfeiters are copying not only the part but also the box. You might think you found a brand name on line for half BUT. We only order online from suppliers we trust. I agree with Toms comment “We only install parts that we supply due to issues related to warranty,

    liability and insurance. I really wish I could help you, but that’s

    just how it is for businesses in 2016.”

    do you have any more information on the supplier paying for labor costs on warrantee parts.  Im just starting up my business after my USAF retirement and I did not know the supplier will pay for warantee labor.  apologies if this is alittle off topic.  

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