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I Feel Swindled At Ntb

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This morning at 8:00 AM on the dot, I was at NTB to get my oil changed. I had gotten my oil changed there in August and my dad also got his oil change done there so I assumed there'd be no problems. My one hour wait, soon ended up being a 3 hour wait. It wasn't like there were cars lined up in fron of the bays. There were some bays occupied, but I clearly saw 2 vacant ones. Not only that, but 2 customers before me seemed to have gotten the same crappy service done to them. They told one customer they didn't have to tools needed to get the bolts off of the tire to do a rotation. Another customer was made to wait 2 hours with me, but I think he finally blew his top and decided on it being done a different time.

Another customer disgruntled came in about his hubcaps and other stuff being put on wrong or not being put on correctly...

I sensed there was troubled no sooner had I dropped off my keys...

I had already had a bad feeling about this oil change, and then when I realized after 2 hours of waiting and my car still being in the same spot where I parked it, something was very wrong here...,but me not knowing anything about cars was afraid of getting told something I wouldn't understand...

That's when the mechanic guy recommended I get my 60,000 mi service w/replacing fluids and my rotors needed replacement and my belt was cracked and on and on and on... I had already knew something didn't feel right, so I told them not to do any of those...(I'd wait until my dad got back and see if he could see the things the guy told him was wrong with my car) My check engine light didn't go off, nor any other sort of car felt fine, aside from the rattling when I braked (which I was used to) and the slight sponginess to my brake (which I pumped my brakes so I was ok)...I was certain my dad would brush those claims off...

And if what that mechanic said was true, I will certainly end up going to a Toyota dealer for the services...

The fairly simple stuff, I hope to be able to DIY...,but other stuff no.

I popped open the hood. To my naked untrained eye, I could not see any noticeable cracking on the belt from looking down into the engine area...perhaps I'd need to have it jacked up...(the cracking I was looking for was similar to what's displayed on the Autozone website).


I refuse to wait that long for something like an oil change (well, I honestly never have, since I do it myself, but anyway...). NTB seems to have more and more problems with that recently. I went there to have my tires balanced last year, and they said it would be a 4+ hour wait!

As far as their mis-quoting you service... I would just have the oil change done at Toyota, since the cost will be comparable and you'll be getting OEM toyota filters, plus THEY KNOW YOUR CAR.

Same goes for the 60k service. If you're saying that your brakes are spongy and have a bit of vibration, then chances are you need new pads/rotors and a fluid flush. That is not something I would wait on, especially if you're having to pump the brakes to get the pressure up. As far as the belt... at that mileage it may very well be time for a new serpentine belt, but you should be able to see that for yourself.

Good luck!



After talking to my dad about NTB's recommendations, he said I should think of a day I can take off from work and take it to the dealership since I can now drive on the highways. (It has to be a clear day tho')

*grumble grumble* I feel like Iris I am about to drop a big sum in the bucket... default_sad


The brakes sound bad. Get them checked ASAP.


Businesses keep going or go out of business based on reputation and repeat customers.

Anyplace that treats you bad or keeps you waiting too long cannot last very long, if no one ever goes back to them, or they get a bad reputation.

I recommend finding another place (dealers are good, but too expensive for my limited budget).

If you have any friends who can help you, or you are capable of learning - they can do it for you or teach you how to do it yourself.

There are lots of reference material - such as repair manuals (Chiltons or Haynes, for example) that you can read and learn from.

You would be amazed at how capable you can become when it comes to auto maintenance and repair, if you want to work on the car yourself.

Whatever you choose, make sure you are happy with the results.

Good luck!


I am with Bikeman,

Business that rip me off, or that I have had bad experiences with, I tell everyone I can to stay away.

Since you are on this site and asking around, I am guessing that you may be interested in doing some of this stuff yourself.

Changing fuids, belts, and brakes are relatively easy, and require minimal tools.

(I started off by having friends show me, and reading. My first tool kit consisted of a $10 socket set, some pliers, a couple wrenches, and a few screwdrivers - Its grown somewhat since then, mainly Craftsman Tools - if i break it, they will replace it)

In the long run, it can save you lots of $$, and you never know when you might be able to help out someone down the road (or on the road).

btw, what is NTB? Is it a chain store? (I do most of the stuff myself, and use a couple of local shops do most everything else...)



NTB I think used to be owned by Sears?? It's called Tire Kingdom NTB (National Tire and Battery), it's a chain.

Anyhow, as you can see in my other posts, I went to dealership to get car repaired, and hopefully no qualms for awhile...

Will pick up book at library this weekend about reparing my generation of Corolla/Prizm.

Hope to fix my PDRN12 gear box light this weekend if weather isn't snowy or rainy or too windy default_smile

Will use dad's old tools, don't know if they're Craftsman...they may be old Japanese tools from the early 80s.


"belt was cracked"

Typical line of mechanic trying to screw a customer. They even sometimes show the alledged cracks. The only caveat is that minor surface cracks are harmless on serpentine belts.

Find a better outfit. My local Toyota dealer changes oil for $24 in 29 min (guaranteed!).


A lot of car owners have no mechanical ability or automotive knowledge.

They have no idea of how or what to inspect for and how easy it really is to do their own maintenance.

Many are too busy with their lives and don't have the time to learn or do the maintenance themselves.

It is easier and faster to hire someone and pay them to do the work.

The trouble is that mechanics are wanting to make money and not all are very honest.

I suggest you take the time and learn, do the work yourself, and save the money for a more worthwhile cause.


if you don't have the place to work on your car, try to ask for recommendations for honest, competent independent mechanics and dealers.

I've been lucky enough to find one of each.


As a retired military man, I have access to the base and it's auto hobby shop. For a small fee I can use the space and any tools that I need.

I don't know if they have any civilian places similar in your area, but you couls look into it.