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Convertible top failure

 
Old 07-05-2019, 02:29 PM
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Diane Garcia
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Default Convertible top failure

I had what I thought was a reliable service center here in town change out my black selt belts for OEM yellow belts on my 2008 997 Turbo Cab. They successfully installed the new belts but gave me the bad news that my top no longer works. They manually put it up, said they didn't cause the failure and sent me home instructing me to call a Porsche dealer or someone who has equipment to get a reading for failure codes. I know they caused this as my top was working great prior to taking it in. But I cant prove that and now I have no choice but to seek out someone who can diagnose and fix the problem. What's more upsetting is now that they put the top up manually, its out of alignment with gaps plus they scratched the top hardware in 2 places (which they readily admitted to causing the scratches). This is a really pristine car with 12,000 miles. Now the Porsche garage in Cleveland cant get me in for over a month. We are going to talk to a couple local garages that do work on Porsches. Has anyone ever experienced anything like this?
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Old 07-05-2019, 03:17 PM
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There are other Porsche dealers that you can call for Service. It might require you to drive further. The top repair and alignment should be left to the Porsche dealership. They have the proper PIWIS and documentation/alignment specs to get your top working.
Ask the dealership for a Loaner or rental car.

Tough first post..
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Old 07-05-2019, 03:32 PM
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Originally Posted by Diane Garcia View Post
I had what I thought was a reliable service center here in town change out my black selt belts for OEM yellow belts on my 2008 997 Turbo Cab. They successfully installed the new belts but gave me the bad news that my top no longer works. They manually put it up, said they didn't cause the failure and sent me home instructing me to call a Porsche dealer or someone who has equipment to get a reading for failure codes. I know they caused this as my top was working great prior to taking it in. But I cant prove that and now I have no choice but to seek out someone who can diagnose and fix the problem. What's more upsetting is now that they put the top up manually, its out of alignment with gaps plus they scratched the top hardware in 2 places (which they readily admitted to causing the scratches). This is a really pristine car with 12,000 miles. Now the Porsche garage in Cleveland cant get me in for over a month. We are going to talk to a couple local garages that do work on Porsches. Has anyone ever experienced anything like this?

I bet they knocked a connector off in the process of installing the seat belts. Did they change out the rear belts also?
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Old 07-05-2019, 05:13 PM
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Originally Posted by Kevin View Post
There are other Porsche dealers that you can call for Service. It might require you to drive further. The top repair and alignment should be left to the Porsche dealership. They have the proper PIWIS and documentation/alignment specs to get your top working.
Ask the dealership for a Loaner or rental car.

Tough first post..
Thank you Kevin. I called the other Cleveland dealership and they can get the car in next week. I should have taken it there to begin with for the seatbelt installment but the place that did it restores all sorts of nice cars and reassured me they could do it. Now they are lying through their teeth about it, saying it just went bad, blah, blah, blah, just to get out of the responsibility of fixing it. The owner even avoided me when I went to pick it and we've had a good relationship. Just so disappointed that they wont own up to it. When they first called and told me about the top not working, they never said it wouldnt go all the way down when they first went to work on it. Then the next day when we went to pick it up, the story was, "oh it wouldnt go down even before we even started to work on it". I wanted to say, why didn't you call me then to tell me that it was defective before you did any work? But I knew I was not going to get anywhere, So now we shall see from the Porsche garage whats wrong and how many thousands it will take to fix. Sorry for the rant.
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Old 07-05-2019, 07:01 PM
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Originally Posted by o7silverturbo View Post
I bet they knocked a connector off in the process of installing the seat belts. Did they change out the rear belts also?
Yes they changed out the rear belts too. Thank you for that information.
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Old 07-06-2019, 04:25 AM
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What sort of consumer laws exist in the USA? I'd be asking them politely to pay for all services required to get it back to how it was before it went in, and calling on some professional advice if they pushed back.
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Old 07-06-2019, 07:47 AM
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Originally Posted by nzskater View Post
What sort of consumer laws exist in the USA? I'd be asking them politely to pay for all services required to get it back to how it was before it went in, and calling on some professional advice if they pushed back.
Oh I am upset. I will see what the Porsche garage says the problem and remedy is first. This Porsche dealer has no connection to the place that installed the seat belts. So I am hoping for honest answers from them. Then if they tell me it was likely caused by them working back there, I will go back to the 1st place and present the report from the Porsche dealer. I think they should have notified me right away that there was something wrong with the top and not waited 2 days plus they manually forced the top up without my permission.
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Old 07-06-2019, 09:35 AM
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Originally Posted by Diane Garcia View Post
Oh I am upset. I will see what the Porsche garage says the problem and remedy is first. This Porsche dealer has no connection to the place that installed the seat belts. So I am hoping for honest answers from them. Then if they tell me it was likely caused by them working back there, I will go back to the 1st place and present the report from the Porsche dealer. I think they should have notified me right away that there was something wrong with the top and not waited 2 days plus they manually forced the top up without my permission.
If they forced the top up then im sure they damaged something but the top can be put up and down without damage or mis-aligning if you know how to do it.
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Old 07-06-2019, 10:11 AM
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Originally Posted by o7silverturbo View Post
If they forced the top up then im sure they damaged something but the top can be put up and down without damage or mis-aligning if you know how to do it.
I dont have much confidence in them at this point as they did not notify me right away of the problem plus they called in someone from another place (not Porsche dealer) to help them get the top up so it was driveable. We found 2 noticeable scratches on the top hardware which we pointed out and they readily said they would replace those parts. So they knew there was damage. Just makes me think they manhandled it. Soon will know the truth from the Porsche dealer. Taking it in Thursday. Heres a car that I've babied and taken all.kinds of care with. Then you send it to a garage you think you can trust and this happens.
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Old 07-06-2019, 10:43 AM
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Last edited by Carlos4S; 07-11-2019 at 11:11 AM.
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Old 07-06-2019, 11:13 AM
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Originally Posted by Diane Garcia View Post
I dont have much confidence in them at this point as they did not notify me right away of the problem plus they called in someone from another place (not Porsche dealer) to help them get the top up so it was driveable. We found 2 noticeable scratches on the top hardware which we pointed out and they readily said they would replace those parts. So they knew there was damage. Just makes me think they manhandled it. Soon will know the truth from the Porsche dealer. Taking it in Thursday. Heres a car that I've babied and taken all.kinds of care with. Then you send it to a garage you think you can trust and this happens.
It sounds like they are already telling you that they are not responsible for the problems with your top.
I am not an attorney and not one to jump to a lawyer solution right away but in certain circumstances a well crafted letter sent on a Legal Firms Letterhead will help them remember they need to do the right thing. I'm not sure if the concept of 'bailment' is applicable here but it may be? As you say, it will be important to see the Porsche dealer assessment on damage and restoration cost of your top before formulating an action plan.
Good luck
Bill

Last edited by tinkerbill; 07-06-2019 at 12:04 PM. Reason: .
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Old 07-07-2019, 12:57 PM
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I had a Merc SL500 - it had a slight leak near the inline fuel pump on the low pressure side. The fittings were such that it's a 2 wrench operation - one to hold the fuel pump in place and a 2nd wrench to tighten the fuel line. An easy job for any mechanic that wasn't dropped as a baby.

The shop calls me 2 hours after dropping off the car. The fuel pump has 'exploded' and sprayed gasoline everywhere. I drive over to the shop and see a fuel pump that looks like someone set off a 1/4 stick of dynamite in. The top is ripped off, the body is twisted and mangled but there's only a little fuel that has dripped to the ground. I'd seen enough episodes of Forensic Files to know the characteristics of blood spatter (in this case fuel splatter and the absence of it ) and went straight to the manager and told him without any reservation that the mechanic was lying to him and that the mech had failed to use 2 wrenches and ripped the fuel pump apart. Accusing only the mechanic and not the manager gave the manager an easy out to save face. He offered to replace the pump and no charge the entire affair. I took the deal but never took my car back there again.

Moral of the story - it's possible they're all inept and dishonest but if you can keep the decision maker on your side of the fence you will probably get the outcome you want.
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Old 07-12-2019, 08:02 PM
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Default Top repaired

UPDATE - Took my 2008 997 turbo into one of the Cleveland Porsche dealers to repair my top. Just got it back today...
$1850 to replace 2 microfiber switches with flap assemblies because switches were found BROKE off. Cost for parts was $581. The rest was labor. The Porsche service dept flat out told me the place that installed my seat belts were responsible for the damage.
I wasted no time in calling the place, calling while driving 60 minutes to home from the dealer. I happened to get the owner on the phone and I told him exactly what the Porsche dealer said and how much they charged me. He was very apologetic, never disputed that they were at fault and has agreed to "make it right". I will personally give him a copy of my bill for $1850 and I expect a check back for $1850 to pay for the repair. Not to mention my time, money for gasoline to drive twice (240 miles round trips) to Porsche garage for repair and also putting miles on my car that I wouldnt normally be doing as well as driving on interstates which I also dont normally do with the Porsche.
I am just grateful to the Porsche garage for being forthright and telling me that the other guy is responsible for the damage. Now hopefully the owner will follow through and reimburse me for the $1850. Thank you everyone for listening and your comments! Glad I took it to a Porsche dealer for repair.
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Old 07-16-2019, 10:20 AM
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Originally Posted by Diane Garcia View Post
UPDATE - Took my 2008 997 turbo into one of the Cleveland Porsche dealers to repair my top. Just got it back today...
$1850 to replace 2 microfiber switches with flap assemblies because switches were found BROKE off. Cost for parts was $581. The rest was labor. The Porsche service dept flat out told me the place that installed my seat belts were responsible for the damage.
I wasted no time in calling the place, calling while driving 60 minutes to home from the dealer. I happened to get the owner on the phone and I told him exactly what the Porsche dealer said and how much they charged me. He was very apologetic, never disputed that they were at fault and has agreed to "make it right". I will personally give him a copy of my bill for $1850 and I expect a check back for $1850 to pay for the repair. Not to mention my time, money for gasoline to drive twice (240 miles round trips) to Porsche garage for repair and also putting miles on my car that I wouldnt normally be doing as well as driving on interstates which I also dont normally do with the Porsche.
I am just grateful to the Porsche garage for being forthright and telling me that the other guy is responsible for the damage. Now hopefully the owner will follow through and reimburse me for the $1850. Thank you everyone for listening and your comments! Glad I took it to a Porsche dealer for repair.

As a shop owner we have all been here before things happen when working on cars. Accidents happen. Its all about how you go about fixing them.

I wouldnt doubt the tech knew and didnt say anything. I mean the topped worked before and now it doesnt. Go back and check what you did.

If you see that the switches are broken order them up replace them and let you know. "hey we broke this switch but we replaced them and all is well" Dont make it worse

Glad you got it all figure out and working again
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