RACV a joke

Submitted: Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 05:42
ThreadID: 29301 Views:4915 Replies:8 FollowUps:19
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On the 3rd of October whilst driving in Geelong, VIC, noticed a scraping noise coming from (seemingly) the rear passenger-side wheel. Upon pulling over found excessive heat at the left-rear hub (vehicle being an '86 FJ62 Landcruiser).
Called RACV and had a service vehicle appear in the next 20mins or so. The wheel was removed and I was told that my brakes were shot.
I asked whether they'd get me the 70km's home (Colac), and was told he thought so.
He put the wheel back on the car (then removed it and screwed in the drum-retaining screw that I pointed out was still sitting on the ground).
This still left a shoe-retaining spring cup-washer on the ground but I was told this was not necessary.
He got me to do a lap of the car-park that I'd pulled into and had a listen to the (still) scraping noise.
Pronounced me OK.
As soon as I got on the highway the scraping noise disappeared, but still took it easy. Luckily.
15kms short of home felt a wobble like a tyre had rolled off a rim. Rolled to the side of the road and found my rear-left wheel sitting on the hub.
5 studs with no wheel-nuts, one sheared.
This occurred on a sweeping right-hand curve, crossing train-lines.
At 80 km's I'm buggered how the wheel didn't come completely loose and the vehicle roll.
Call RACV again, for a truck this time, and within a few hours the vehicle's in the dirveway.
It then takes 3 days for an inspector to check out the damage.
He admits fault immediately, and organises repair at the local RACV agent (who happen to be the local Toyota dealership). And refuses to cover $18 in taxi-fares incurred in the last few days.
But has trouble finding a chrome replacement wheel, and can only find a black sunraysia. On about the fourth time that this was repeated, I told him that a black wheel was not acceptable.
OK, they'll have a chrome wheel within two days.
I mention that I don't like the idea of going two days without a spare, and am told that "it'll be allright"
I say it won't.
He agrees to have my spare tyre put on the black wheel until they come up with the chromie.
They take her away to replace the sheared studs/inspect damage. Report is that they fixed the studs, my brakes still had "a good 10,000kms" in them, but the wheel-bearing was stuffed. Well and truly.
I pay for a wheel-bearing and they install.
Next day feel the corresponding hub and it's hot.
Back to Toyota(RACV) and speak to the mechanic as I drop it off.
"Did you fix the brakes" he asks.
I reply with the obvious, and wait and watch as he takes the wheel and drum off. Sure enough the shoes are screwed, but only on the outside edge, indicating that the damage was due to bearing wear/collapse.
Also apart from the (still) missing shoe spring retaining cup-washer, another clip was gone, and the hand-brake adjusting arm was mangled.
I pay for shoes and missing/broken parts ($120 odd to have them installed).

Car's going again but there's still about a 1.5mm deep groove worn in my rear-left hub where the rim had "run" on it when the last stud failed, so I contact RACV again.
"No worries, we'll just run some sand-paper over it and give it a paint" is the reply.
I point out that you don't fix a 1.5mm groove by removing 1.5mm of metal around it to make it even.
So he arranges for the car to go to Toyota again for an inspection.
By this time I know the mechanic so give him a ring, and am told that he's been instructed to dress the hub.
Rang RACV again (BTW this has been handled by one RACV representative named "Kieth" at their claims dept.) and left a message.
Getting no reply.
Eventually contacted Kieth again on the 11/11/05 and he told me he'd call within a few days.
This started on 03/10/05.
It's now 02/01/06.
Still waiting for my replacement wheel.
Still got cosmetic damage to the car.
Still out of pocket for parts/labour.
Still angry that such a shoddy diagnosis was performed that led to this.
Still angry with RACV's continuing attitude.
Still waiting for an apology.

Been RACV members for years.
Funnily enough, all our insurance is with the RACV too.
Definitely be taking my business elsewhere in the coming year.

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Reply By: Eric from Cape York Connections - Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 06:46

Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 06:46
Not a good thing.
I have been a member of our states equivillant for 30 years and always had a good result from them.

All the best
AnswerID: 146273

Reply By: Footloose - Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 07:31

Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 07:31
I used to be a member of the NRMA for years and years. Finally gave it away when I realized that non mechanically minded me knew more about my vehicle than the average roadside jockey. ("Oh" followed by a thoughtful silence, "It's a DIESEL")
Rejoined the RACQ a few years ago. I know that in some cases its just a con to get you into their workshop, but the organisation itself has been friendly and helpful to me. Their agents in the country towns are usually great in my experience.
BUT....they are composed of many small businesses, and we all know what that means.
AnswerID: 146278

Follow Up By: Eric from Cape York Connections - Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 08:34

Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 08:34
I have a few mates that are now mechanics for the nrma and they are and still top notch mechanics and they had to be to get the job.

All the best
FollowupID: 399814

Reply By: Member - Davoe (Widgiemooltha) - Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 07:44

Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 07:44
1) locked keys in car on numerous occasions and once had a mate lock keys in the boot in the barossa all fixed no worries. Also including 2wice in the one night in Port Lincoln (I dont smoke dope anymore)
2)Nissan Campervan kept stopping middle of the night RAC contracter came out virtuallly pulled carby apart and finally diagnosed the fuel freezing and pulled of Rubber cold air intake - No further problems
3) Same camper wouldnt startcontracter came out and diagnosed wire off of ballast resister - no problems
4) same camper just died in Perth, RAC found points were loose and closed up- No problems
5) hole in radiator 106k East of Alice Free ride on the back of a flatbed to alice fixed next day
6) Lost wheel bearing 100k West of Ayres rock, Limped it back to yulara 4.00am and was put up in a cabin by RAC to get some sleep while it was fixed
7) lost keys to previos camper and had a hotwire wire made up while my spare set was sent from adelaide
Only Negative experience was when i was charged way too much by the Woomera contracter to have a hotwire switch made up after being towed to the garage after my Valients ignition fell to pieces.
I have recieved the same level of service whether it be using the RAC as a member of RAA or the NTAA when a member of RAC.
Also recieved good legal assistance and advice on 2 occasions with the RAA and made 3 painless house insurance claims with the RAC
I appreciate your problems but I will be more than happy to renew my memberships and insurance
AnswerID: 146282

Reply By: V8Diesel - Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 08:27

Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 08:27
Sounds like a dissappointing experience with the RACV there Thylacine, but I do have to say the RAC (WA) has always been fantastic to me. I've owned in excess of 80 vehicles over the years and the RAC has helped me out on more than a few occasions.

Money very well spent IMHO.
AnswerID: 146285

Reply By: Member - Phil G (SA) - Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 08:48

Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 08:48

Getting back to the cause of your problem - when did you last repack the rear wheel bearings??

The reason I ask is two-fold:
Firstly, the fully floating rear wheel bearings are the most neglected maintenance item on a 4wd.
Secondly, it will let you down badly in the bush. I replaced the rear wheel bearings on a troopie that was half way across the Simpson a few years back - that guy was going to be stuck out there for a week at least waiting for help and a bearing to arrive.

And I've only ever had dealings with the RAA, and they have been 100% every time.
AnswerID: 146288

Follow Up By: Rojac - Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 09:23

Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 09:23
Ahh the RAA, yes on most occasions for simple stuff they’re ok i.e. flat batteries/keys locked in car but I'd have to question their competency on other items.

Ford ute wouldn’t start, I assumed dead battery and called RAA. Technician (??) turned up and diagnosed as a dead ECU although it appeared to be battery related. Asked him to recheck, but no, the clown was adamant it was ECU.

Arranged tow truck to take to Ford dealer.

After fecking around for the best part of the day and PIA it was a flat battery, to which I could have bought on the spot and the problem would have been fixed.

You have to wonder about some of these guys.

A bit like the local "english is my second language cabbies" that don't know north from south and more times than not ask for your directions.

There doesn't appear to be any standards anymore.
FollowupID: 399816

Follow Up By: Member - JohnR (Vic)&Moses - Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 10:09

Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 10:09
Phil and Rojac I think you have identified the problemS here. The level of maintenance and the inadequate training of a lot of people that are sent out of some places to do the work. Of course some are unable to be trained adequately. It is difficult to find good people with the current employment situation.

A near 20 year old 4by is a trap for the unwary as unless maintenance is up to scratch, you never know what is the base fault you are fighting.

It looks to me that the RACV isn't fighting hard enough with it's contractor but the real beef is with the local Toyota dealer who should know enough about the Toyota breakdown.

As a RACV member years ago I remember how I felt about a local fellow who had the RACV van visit quite a lot of times - several times in some weeks- to a vehicle that was old and inadequately maintained. I nearly stopped my membership as I thought that person was abusing the system. Later in my life I see it should not have to cope with that abuse, but I make no judgement on Thylacine doing anything like that.

I will try to make a mental note that the Colac Toyota dealer RACV guys are inadequate and hope I never break down there with my faithful Nissan or the car either. Hope you can sort it with them Thylacine.
FollowupID: 399825

Follow Up By: Nudenut - Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 10:10

Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 10:10
yep...but its not the RAA its their sub-contractors.....
some years back car died on side of road (100 metres from petrol station) and 2 kilometre from home...RAA contractor arrived and diagnosed computer...vehicle towed home (free tow)

next morning arranged tow to dealer for repairs....i forked up for this tow

sent raa a letter and copy of repair invoice and copy of tow invoice asking them to cough as dealer replaced coil. could have got one the petrol station the evening it failed. They did but only after several letters of correspnedence and insistance
FollowupID: 399826

Follow Up By: Member - JohnR (Vic)&Moses - Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 10:11

Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 10:11
wrong John, it was Geelong..........
FollowupID: 399827

Follow Up By: Member - Phil G (SA) - Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 19:41

Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 19:41
I wonder whether some of you have unrealistic expectations of what an NRMA/RAA/RACV/whatever contractor is capable of doing. The whole idea is that they are there to get you out of trouble. I'd expect that 90+% of their callouts would be for flat batteries, flat tyres and locked keys in the vehicle.

If you expect them to accurately diagnose a modern vehicle with a myriad of electronics that baffle the specialist dealers, then theres no way a single operator can be any good at that, let alone at the roadside.

Gone are the days where cleaning up the plugs, or filing the points, or blowing out the carbie jets would get any vehicle going.

Also, vehicle owners who skip maintenance get what they deserve.
FollowupID: 399868

Follow Up By: Rojac - Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 20:53

Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 20:53
I don't have an issue with the capabilities of the technicians, as given the amount of different types of vehicles its prob a PIA. but.......
If you don't know what the fault may be the say so, don't profess to be the "guru" and then incorrectly diagnose.

In my case, ECU = $$$ = :( as was not to be.

It also pays to be in those plus programs as per the RAA as they give you one or two (?) free tows for 8km (?) (Adelaide) + a variety of different “options" should you break down.

FollowupID: 399878

Reply By: Footloose - Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 09:05

Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 09:05
Years ago I hired a cheap car in the UK with roadside assistance. Twas in the middle of a Pommy winter when the car stopped near Loch Ness. Wife and baby in car, I hiked through snowdrifts to find a phone about 1K away. (constantly falling on the ice, up to my thighs in snow etc) Public holiday yadda yadda. Rang hire company, they said get a mech at our expense. Public holiday yadda yadda. Finally got car started by myself and away we went. Found a hotel and collapsed for the night, only to be rung by the hire comapany. They had tracked us around half of Scotland and northern UK, frantic about our safety. Now THAT'S what I call service !

On the downside we had stopped on a garage driveway. The people inside the garage didn't want to know a freezing woman with child. Wouldn't let us use their phone, and wouldnt do it for us. Real friendly types. So friendly that my better half preferred to stay in the car instead of out of the blizzard.

Would that happen here ? I doubt it.

AnswerID: 146291

Follow Up By: gramps - Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 09:46

Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 09:46

"people inside the garage didn't want to know"

Can you blame them? You know the sort they consigned to 'the colonies' LOLOL

FollowupID: 399820

Follow Up By: Footloose - Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 10:00

Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 10:00
Gramps, too true ! Funny accents that we have...but there again compared to the Scots in that area I rekkon we're ahead. Maybe my ancestors were members of the wrong clan. Maybe I didn't have a bottle of their most famous export in my grubby little hand, who knows ? Other people in that region were extremely nice to us, I've never worked it out. Maybe they'd recently been robbed by Bonny and Clyde or something.
FollowupID: 399823

Follow Up By: gramps - Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 10:16

Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 10:16
Maybe they thought you were Nessie (Loch Ness) in disguise :)))

Used to work with two guys from Glasgow. Hard enough to understand them separately, when they were talking to one another it was like a bloody dogfight LOLOL They were'nt amused with me rolling on the ground crying with laughter at them.

As for the different motoring organizations, still a member with NRMA but I have'nt had to use them for many years (touch wood). Like any large organization, you're bound to get a variation in service, knowledge, attitude etc.
FollowupID: 399828

Follow Up By: Footloose - Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 10:23

Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 10:23
My wife said that there wasn't a monster in Loche Ness until I put my toe in the water...for a VERY short time :))))))))))))
FollowupID: 399829

Follow Up By: gramps - Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 10:37

Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 10:37
Hahahaha from the horror stories I've been told, if you could bare your toes and dip them into any external water source in Scotland it must have been mid Summer !!! Could'nt possibly have been Winter LOLOLOL
FollowupID: 399830

Follow Up By: Footloose - Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 10:53

Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 10:53
Middle of winter, but the water hadn't frozen as most of the rest of the place had. I rekkon my toe is still blue. Getting over the ice in the parkintg lot to find the cars door lock frozen was worse. Had to get a ciggy lighter out and warm the key several times to get in, while holding onto the car to stay upright.
You know the old song about you take the high road and I'll take the low ? Guess who took the high road ? And really learned to drive ! The police closed the road after we went through, too dangerous. That black ice is tricky stuff, I'd sooner have our deserts any time. In fact I'd sooner have our anything any time :))))))))
FollowupID: 399831

Follow Up By: gramps - Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 11:16

Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 11:16
The way the weather's going round here, I might get some 'black ice' practice yet !!

43.6 blazing sun yesterday, 21.2 and light rain at the moment. Typical Melbourne weather. I think Bracks and his gang have annexed the Hawkesbury. The NSW South Coast was only a smokescreen. LOL
FollowupID: 399833

Follow Up By: Footloose - Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 15:23

Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 15:23
I rekkon he might annex the Gold Coast, tow it down to Melbourne and rename it the Cold Coast :)))))
FollowupID: 399846

Follow Up By: gramps - Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 15:48

Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 15:48
ROFLMAO would'nt put it past those mexicans. Next thing you know, they'll expect to win an AFL flag some time this century LOL
FollowupID: 399847

Reply By: Skid - Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 09:32

Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 09:32
Last time I checked RACWA won't tow/trailor any vehicle over 2 tons.
Anyone had a problem with that? Seeing that the average 'proper' 4wd is over 2 tons.

AnswerID: 146294

Follow Up By: gramps - Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 09:43

Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 09:43
Does'nt take much to get an 'improper' 4wd over 2 tons either.
FollowupID: 399819

Follow Up By: Member - Davoe (Widgiemooltha) - Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 21:20

Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 21:20
Nuh thats Bull had no problems getting my 3T camper on a flatbed
FollowupID: 399880

Follow Up By: HJ60-2H - Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 22:02

Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 22:02
Friend of mine had that (2T wont tow you) problem. He took them to task based on the fact that they accepted his annual fees knowing the vehicle had a GVM over 2T and then refused to provide the service that they had contractually agreed to provide. He won, basically got them on breach of contract so they refunded him the tow fees he paid.

I think it has got to do with their ability to tow vehicles over 2T using the contractors they engage. Still... they take the money from you....
FollowupID: 399886

Reply By: TroopyTracker - Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 20:31

Monday, Jan 02, 2006 at 20:31
Mate here rings them lunch time christmas eve as his car won't start and he's about to drive 6hrs home to family. Sorry but nothing till Tuesday morning???? Seemed a bit off to me but who else do you call?? No one for him, missed Christmas with family. I looked into another mob as by rights they don't have to tow my car or van (both over two tonne) but had to pay for two policys one for car and one for van. NRTA ??? I think it was but was about 3 or $400 a year for memory.
AnswerID: 146338

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