Sunday, December 12, 2010

Carnation - is it really worth getting your car serviced there ??

Before I go ahead with a walk through of my experience, I would like you to answer some questions
1. Was the cost of your service at carnation higher than the cost of your normal service at your earlier service center?
2. Were some parts found to be faulty? Are you sure they were faulty?
3. Did you ever get a call asking for a feedback?
4. If you were offered tea/coffee and you said yes - did you actually get your tea/coffee?

Now for my experience.

It was one fine day that I decided that instead of going to my gm service center, I decided to go to carnation. I could say that it was a bad day because I did not know that I would be duped. So on 20th of November, i took my aveo for service at the Noida sector 63 service station of carnation.

Upon entry i saw that there are not so many cars there. Generally on a saturday or sunday, the service centers are heavily loaded. I thought that it might be better, because I would get better attention. I did not realize that this was due to the fact that most of the prople there are either too rich to care or first-timers like me. My car was taken to the workshop and examined.

They opened the bonet and showed me that the car has hit something due to which the fan is rubbing against some "lamda". I would have to get a body work done. I was like hell. Cant you move the fan or twist the lamda. They told me that that neither can be done without hurthing the car. I was like... ok... You are the one who know more about the car. Upon delivery, i saw that in addition to the body work (pulling the front grill out), they have also moved the fan to the left --- what? but they told me that this was not possible. So a simple "moving the fan" cost me 3000/-. I could have definitely avoided the body work.

Another mechanic came hopping around with his "light in mobile" and told me that the drive belt is faulty. It was totally dark and i was unable to see. I thought that he might be having "night eyes" like to owl to be able to see a fault in such a dark place. But then they showed it to me from below and it was really cracked up. I think that was what which gave me the confidence to trust(wrongly) in them.

Another mechanic hopped and told me that the suspention is leaking. The supervisor who was advicing me first told me that the suspention was fine. But then he looked at the mechanic and then back to the suspention and then according to him the suspention was faulty. It was leaking and should be changed. I should have said no. Now the new suspention which they have put in creaks like anything. I am not an expert and i do not know whether they have put in genuine parts or duplicate parts. They charged me around 2000/- for the suspension. I could have saved that.

And eventually the most absurd thing was when the supervisor told me that the disk brake pads were totally rubbed out. I was like - what? How can he see it without touching or opening them? Maybe they have a way which i am not aware of. I was like ok - replace them. They charged me 2000/- something for the brake pads and 500/- something for the labour. Now, by luck i saw them replace the brake pads. First of all they were not even 50% rubbed. And secondly it was a 5 minute job - just removing some screws, changing the brake pads and putting them back. I paid 500/- for this 5 minute labour job. And i am not even sure now whether they are genuine or not.

One another thing that they replaced was a bearing. The supervisor called me and told me that it is faulty and will not last for even 300 kms. I was like - ok change it. When i went to the shop and took the spare - he told me that it is faulty and i could feel the vibrations if i rotate the bearing. I felt nothing. Except for monetary gain, i am not sure why he changed it.

So, i would have gone to my normal gm service center, this service would have costed me 3000 (body work) + 2500 (brake pads) + 2000 (suspention) + 1500 (bearing) = 9000/- less. The service which was 14000/- would then be only 5000/-.

Now the question is why did I not feel that something was wrong - all the while they were duping me. The reason being that i am not a mechanic. I do not know what part will run and what will not run. Hell, i am not even aware of the location of all the parts. So, it is easy to dupe me. The second reason was that I wanted to get my car serviced by carnation - at least once experience what they have to say? In fact I should have drove out when they told me that the drive belt was faulty without even looking at it.

So, when did i realize that i have been duped? 1 week after the service, the car was as rough as it was before the service. That was when my doubt was confirmed that the service was not worth it. I had realized that i have been duped of a few parts. But 1 week after when the car was as rough as before, I took a look at all the parts. And then I realized that I have been duped.

What could i do? I sent a mail to j.khattar@carnation.in regarding the fact that i was duped. There was one call where the lady called at around 11 am - and started explaining that the parts that they had changed were supposed to be changed. I told her that I was in a meeting and asked her to call back in 1 hour. I did not get back any calls.

When I get my car serviced at GM, I get a call after a week regarding how the car is performing - or if i am facing any issues. But I never got any such calls from carnation. I believe the business model that Mr. Khatter is following is of duping first-timers. They do not expect the people to return. If by mistake anyone does, he is worth duping again.

Here is the mail that I sent to j.khattar@carnation.in. I did not get any response though.

Hi,

This is the first time i visited Carnation for servicing my car - Aveo 1.6 LT. For the past 4 years, the car was being serviced by the GM authorized service center in sector 8 noida. The average cost of my service for the past 4 years was around 3000/- per service. At carnation the cost of 1 service was 13800(something) It has been 10 days after the service and the car feels very rough. My previous experience is that the car becomes rough after almost 2 months - when i used to get my car serviced at GM.

5 parts were replaced and a body repairing work was done.

1. brake pads
2. shocker
3. spark plugs
4. drive belt
5. some bearing

Out of the 5 parts,
- the brake pads were fine - i have the old ones and they could still run for another 10,000 kms.
- the new shocker creaks a lot - i am not sure if they put orignial or duplicate.
- the bearing - looked fine to me - i am not sure why it was changed.

In addition to this the body repair for 3000/- was done, which was not required.
I was told that body repair was the only solution - i should have referred a local mechanic as well.

The personal experience was good - but i get almost similar personal touch at GM as well.

Would i get my car serviced at carnation again ?
No

Reason :
I am not a car mechanic. I cannot tell whether a part is defective or not, genuine or duplicate. The service is not good.
Parts are unnecessarily replaced - even when the current parts are in working condition and doing fine. The service is very expensive - and not worth it.

Service location:
Sector 63, Noida.

2 of my friends who have got their car serviced at carnation have similar feedback.

Regards
Jayant Kumar


This review is intended to prevent people from getting duped by carnation. People at carnation ask you for tea/coffee. But if you say yes, you would never get your tea/coffee. Have you noticed it?

3 comments:

Agupta321 said...

I met with an accident and sent my car for repair to carnation Noida. They gave me a rough estimate of 80K - 90K worth of repair on my car and told me that my liability would be around 20K - 25K and the rest would be covered by insurance company. I visited them regularly to check the progress on the car and the pace of repairing the car was pathetic. I didn't loose my patience until the day when they gave me the final invoice. The total bill was generated at 1,33,000. Out of which insurance company only paid 80K. So they asked me to pay the rest, 53K and pick up my car. When I inquired about such a huge inflated invoice amount then they told me that more damage was noticed in the car once the repair work started which doesn't make sense to me at all. I should have been informed about the extra damage on the car. Insurance company showed me pictures that proved that around 26K worth of parts were replaced in my car which were never damaged and hence the insurance company rejected the claim for those parts. Now ideally if those parts were damaged, I should have only paid the depreciation amount but Carnation asked me to pay the entire amount including labour charges and taxes extra. My liability which should have been only 20K to 25K, went up to 53K (more than double). I wrote emails to Mr Jagdish Khattar who is the owner of Carnation and told him how I am being cheated by his employees. I was never informed about the extra damages on the car and pictures taken at the time of survey clearly shows that most of the parts were not even damaged. But Mr Khattar never bothered to reply back. I was given his email Id by his own employees only as if they didn't fear anything of him.
When I went to carnation to take the delivery I was horrified by looking at the car. My car's front glass was broken (it was fine after the accident). Driver's seat was bent towards left. None of the lights they replaced were working fine. Power brakes and steering were extremely heavy and impossible to use with ease.
Since there was a dispute my invoice was settled in such a way that I ended up paying 12K extra amount then what I should have paid for. Original parts were taken away from my car and replaced with very heavy and local parts (suspension kit, excel etc). I was made to pay for the replacements. I finally made the payment and took the car.
They not only stole the original parts and made me pay for the replaced ones, they EVEN STOLE PETROL FROM MY CAR. I had Rs.1500 worth of petrol in my car at the time I sent it to them and even when the job card depicts the same they told me that a lot of petrol is consumed during the repair. They gave my car back with empty fuel tank.
Now I have been driving my car for last 2 weeks and notice the following issues with my car:-
- It makes huge rattling noise when on first gear. Excel was replaced by them
- If it rains then my car's trunk gets filled with water. Full trunk was replaced in my car.
- The fuel cap doesn't open up. The pannel containing the fuel cap was replaced by them.
- Multiple scratches on the front left door (replaced by them)
- Each time I press my foot on the accelerator it makes a hushing noise.
- Brakes are too tight (they changed the break pads)
- steering is too tight (they changed the steering rod)
- Car feels too heavy to drive and gives a lot of jerks on speed breakers and on uneven roads. (suspension kit and shockers were changed by them)
- Paint quality is the most pathetic I have ever seen and rubbing on the car is uneven. My car has become two shades lighter.

Even after paying 12K extra my car still requires a lot of repair work.
I would never recommend any of family and friends to ever go to carnation ever again. My intent of writing this is to let people take informed decision before going to carnation. The funniest thing is that after I settled my invoice and collected my car they gave me free coupons for discounts on my subsequent visits at carnation :)

Anonymous said...

Hi,

It was really a horrible experience of mine as well with Carnation Sector 5 Noida branch. My car Maruti Dezire which was just went for DryCleaning started troubling a lot after that, and the very next day when i went again to them, they started behaving as if it is all my fault and I have to pay such and such huge amount to get the problems fixed. Even they were not able to figure out the actual issues and want me to leave car for another 2 more days.
Since I was already frustrated by their service, I just walk out of their center

I also recommend everyone never ever go to carnation.

They are big time ROBBERS

Jayant Kumar said...

After 4 years of posting the blog I got a comment from the carnation CRM team - as an attempt to improve their SEO rakingings (i believe).

Hi Jayant,

Carnation Auto never had any intention of duping valued customers like you. We have a very transparent business model and we believe in delivering the best service to our customers. We will look into your matter and find a suitable answer for your complaint.

Thanks,
Carnation Online CRM.

Will update if they actually do something.....