These days, there are more vehicle maintenance facility options out there than ever before, each with their own unique set of pros and cons. For many people, the price and convenience factor of quick lube shops can’t be beaten for routine oil changes. Most consumers don’t realize that despite what the marketers may say, there is an element of risk involved in using these places, particularly if you drive a somewhat unique vehicle.
To illustrate, allow me to tell you about my own work experience. My first paying job, one that did not involve lugging books around a warehouse for my step-father, came when I was 15. I was hired to work in the pit at the brand new Mr. Lube on Curlew in Toronto. I was 15 and did well in high school auto shop class, so that apparently qualified me to ensure the longevity of dozens of engines every single day. Fortunately, I never left a drain plug loose or left a double gasket on a filter, causing a catastrophic engine failure on the 401. I did however see that happen a number of times due to other guys’ inattention.
Lube lane jobs are in minimum wage bracket at best, but often student minimum wage is more likely. There just isn’t much chance that a consumer is going to experience much in the way of technical expertise.
AudiZine forum user bhvrdr found that out the hard way when he visited a Valvoline instant oil change location with a Groupon deal that was less than the price of actually buying the oil and filter and doing the work himself.
From an intentionally damaged transmission aero pan (an under body shield) to a drained transmission and an overfilled engine, bhvrdr’s ride got the full monty. Perhaps the smartest thing the guy did was have his car towed to an Audi dealership.
It will be interesting to see how this plays out.
I already blame myself enough and am aware what I did was stupid by not taking my car to a more trusted shop or doing the work myself but i’ll share this post anyways and be ready for the flaming 🙁 I was looking through Groupon and saw a $49 deal to get a full synthetic oil change at the Valvoline Instant Oil Change place.