Don’t Buy An Engine From Them, You Will Get Screwed! - O’Reilly Auto Parts

On July 31, 2014 I purchased a remanufactured engine for my 1992 GMC 3500 Vandura Box Van from O’Reilly Auto Parts. This was taken directly to our mechanic awaiting his install schedule.

I entrusted the installation to a Certified Mechanic Shop, Dynamic Emission Repairs, in Tucson, Arizona. The owner of this facility, Havid Canez, has been taking care of my automotive maintenance for at least 15 years and has my complete confidence. He has been in business over 25 years and has 3 shops, I think he knows what he is doing.

His shop was able to schedule in the work while I was on vacation from September 1-8, during which I received a call to inform me that the engine was faulty, that when it was tested it made knocking sounds. After determining that no other engine compartment components were contributing to the problem, Havid’s mechanic shut down the engine and removed the oil pan, only to find metal shavings in with the oil. Based on the sounds they heard, and this evidence, Havid’s best guess was that a camshaft bearing may have come apart. They saved the oil pan and the engine oil they drained prior to removing the engine.

Prior to returning the engine to O’Reilly Auto Parts, I documented the shavings with the attached photos. I gave the gallon of oil and the oil pan (separately from the engine) to the store manager, Jason, as evidence of the defective engine.

At the time the engine was determined to be defective, and since I was out of town, I decided that I did not want to waste time and exchange for another remanufactured engine and possibly go through the same thing again, and so I asked Havid to make arrangements to purchase a new engine from the Chevy Dealership.

At this point I was unaware of what O’Reilly’s return policy was, but figured they were a reputable company that would stand behind their product. In any event, I expected to be able to get a refund for a defective product. How I was going to cover the cost of the labor to install and remove a defective engine I had no idea since I only budgeted for 1 engine to be removed and installed not two. Havid informed me that there is usually a provision to make a labor claim along with the engine return which was good news to me, so I asked Jason about it. He told me that if the engine, upon being shipped back to the manufacturer (a company called Power Torque, which I later found out is a division of O’Reilly Auto Parts), was inspected and found to have a manufacturer’s defect, that they would be willing to pay the mechanic shop $45 per hour for the labor to remove and replace.

This is about one half the labor rate I had been charged, and when I told Havid about it, he agreed that he would accept as payment in full whatever allowance they made. This concession also proved to me that Dynamic Emission Repairs was not trying to take advantage of the situation to make extra money, that Havid was willing to cover his costs alone in order to take excellent care of his customer.

When I was at O’Reilly returning the engine, in the original packaging, Jason told me that to make a labor claim I would have to call the number in the warranty packet that came with the engine, give the operator some identification numbers found in the packet and that they would start the claims process. A technician would be calling me to follow up with some additional questions, which happened the next business day if I recall correctly.

In the meantime, I asked Havid about the warranty packet that came with the engine, so that he could give me the numbers I needed to make the call. When he was going through the papers, he saw something that led him to believe I needed to have the paperwork in my hands. The very next day he hand-delivered the documents to me at my shop. He showed a form that stated an oil pump was included in the engine crate. Havid flatly stated that there had not been an oil pump, which he had to purchase one to complete the installation. The fact that the oil pump was missing made us wonder if we had received an engine that had been in someone else’s hands before us, returned with parts missing, and resold. At the very least, the crate had been tampered with. I told Jason about the missing oil pump when I returned the engine.

When I examined the rest of the packet, I couldn’t find a phone number to call anywhere in it, so I went back to the O’Reilly store to ask for help. Jason was the best; he looked up the number, found all of the identification numbers within the packet and called in the information to start the claim (#323965). I found out at this time that I could not yet get a refund on the engine, even though I returned the engine back to O’Reilly where I purchased it, until it had been shipped off and inspected. Not what a customer wants to here, but because I trust my mechanic’s assessment of the engine, and I believed that O’Reilly Auto Parts was on my side as well, I left the matter in their care.

So now O’Reilly has the money I paid for the engine and the engine and I have nothing but the cost of another engine and two sets of labor to remove and install an engine.
When I got the follow-up call, the technician’s name was Ron; his phone number is 866-564-8943 xt 2. He spent most of the conversation grilling me about my old engine, wanted to know the mileage (which I told him was about 180,000) and all kinds of questions about the history of the van. I tried to be patient but the questions really felt like they were designed to trick me into saying something that would give them ammunition to deny a claim before the defective engine had even be shipped to them to inspect.

My previous driving habits and maintenance records seem irrelevant since I was not filing a claim on my old engine. I was asking for restitution on a “new” engine that never made it out of the shops bay let alone driven even 1 foot, that at best failed its first test run. I told Ron that I would appreciate it if he called my mechanic to discuss the engine installation with him since he had first-hand knowledge and could describe the issues accurately. Ron said he needed an exact mileage on my old engine not the new one, from the shop, and since my van was still there, he had to call them anyway. Havid assured Ron that they had done everything “by the book,” and he told me that there was nothing they could have done to prevent the internal defect from surfacing. Havid said he even drained the gas tank since the van was sitting for a while.

About a week later, I called to check on the status of the claim and was told that the tracking number assigned to the claim let them know that the engine was due to arrive at the manufacturer on the next day.

I waited about another week and called again, and after some phone tag I found out from Ron (in a voice mail) that the report had come in on the engine. According to PowerTorque, there is absolutely nothing wrong with the engine, that everything was found to be in tolerance, and that there is no evidence whatsoever of any damage to the engine. All claims for labor and or a replacement engine were denied. Any hope of restitution rests with O’Reillys, PowerTorque claims the engine is flawless. I still have never received the report from Power Torque.

When I told Havid about this turn of events, he was dumfounded. He immediately got on the phone with John Bostick, the District Manager of O’Reilly Auto Parts (cell 520-850-7831), which I have also left a message for and have yet to hear back, and explained the situation. Mr. Bostick was actually already familiar with my case because he had spoken to Jason about it. We are hoping that Mr. Bostick will plead our case successfully, but we have, as of this moment, not heard back. By the way, I found out that Jason no longer works for O’Reillys, hopefully not because he was helping us.
In any case, these findings make no sense whatsoever.

One of two things is true. Either my mechanic is lying to me, which I know for a fact is not the case since he has never lied to me in our 15 year business relationship, further, he has absolutely nothing to gain by doing so, just a whole bunch of extra work with no guarantee of getting paid. Or PowerTorque is trying to avoid making good on a defective product that probably was returned defective previously since it was missing parts. In light of these events, we Googled PowerTorque, and it appears that a multiplicity of customers are having almost identical problems, that Power Torque denies any problems exist for any of their products.

I feel at this time, Power Torque is frauding their customers by not standing behind their product, denying there is even a problem when there clearly is and further reselling a known defective product back out to the consumers yet again, all the time not refunding the original purchaser. The refund on the engine itself should have been refunded when the engine was returned on 09/12/14 yet it still has not.

Gee what a scam, sell it defective, take back, not refund the customer, say everything is okay, don’t return the engine that is shipped clear across the country, (there would not even be a guarantee that we would even receive our engine back) and then resale the same engine to yet another unsuspecting consumer and the cycle starts again.

O’Reilly Auto Parts – 51 S Pantano Rd Tucson AZ 85710 | 520-885-3723

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