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NTB - Damage to Rims

John of Woodbridge VA (7/27/01):
I brought in 4 tires to be mounted on my 1998 BMW Z3 2.8. After washing my rims I noticed all four rims had a large scrape around the edge of the rim. The location was the same on all of the rims. The rims are all damaged now and the appearance is horrible.

All four rims are damaged and appearance is diminished. This car is a car made for "looks", and the rims on the car now "LOOK" horrible. I am not willing to go buy myself new rims just because NTB ruined mine. I want to be compensated.

John should go to Small Claims Court.

David of Atlanta, GA, writes:
Today (8/1/00) I went to NTB just to get a tire put on. I already had the tire and I had just purchased a very expensive set of rims about one week ago. When they returned my car the rim was all scraped and scratched not only ruining the finishing on the center piece but also damaging the metal on the forged lip.

I went back in and told them about this. The salesman came out and looked at it. At first he tried to act like it might not have been them, until I showed him all the other rims, told him that it was only a week old and reminded him that he had looked at it closely before they changed the tire and that there was absolutly NOTHING wrong with it at that time.

He then brought me in to speak with the manager who said that if I brought it in to them the next morning at 7:30 am that they would send it off to get refinished. Refinishing weakens the rim and would not leave it in as good condition as a brand new rim. I told him this and said that he needs to get me a new rim.

He said he would not do this, that it is not the company's policy. Not company policy to replace items they damage? I asked him. He said they would not replace it. I told him I would not leave until he agreed to replace it. After about a half hour he finally said to me "do you really think a big company like this gives a s*** about your rim?".

I told him that I wanted to speak to someone higher than him, and he told me that the district manager would be in tomorrow at 1pm till 4pm. I informed him that I was a network engineer and I can't get out of work to come and have to argue with this guy when it was convient for them and could they have him stay until 5:30 so that I could speak with him. He laughed at me and said no they wouldn't.

If David wants to make an issue of this, he should sue NTB in Small Claims Court.

John of Rockford, IL:

I purchased a new set of tires for my 1969 Porsche 912 with aluminum wheels on Saturday 5/27/2000. They loaded my car in a garage when I picked them up (the wheels were off the car) so I did not get a good look at the wheels until I unloaded them at home the next day. I noticed severe gouges and scrapes in several places on two of the wheels. I returned to the store after the holiday on Tuesday 5/30 to talk to the manager. he looked at the wheels and admitted responsibility for some of the damage but would not accept responsibility for all of it.

He claims there was no way his shop could have caused some of the damage but I don't believe him because I know it wasn't there when I brought them in and there is almost identicle damage on another wheel that I know was present when I bought the car. Jeff (store manager) gave me the cell phone number of his area manager named Leo but Leo does not return my calls. Jeff claims Leo does not have a home address or office phone number. Jeff also said he doesn't know Leo's last name and only sees him once a month. Jeff never seemed too concerned with customer satisfaction and at this point I would prefer to deal with a higher authority but I'm not sure where to go from here. I need to have the wheels repaired (getting cost estimates) or replaced ($335 each new from Porsche).

John is not going to solve this problem on the phone. He needs to write a letter setting out the same points he made above and mail it certified, return-receipt-requested, to the manager of the NTB store in Rockford. He should state that he is willing to wait no more than 30 days for a resolution. If nothing is done, he can sue the store in Small Claims Court.

John of Reading, PA, had a similar experience:

On June 6,2000 I took my Mercedes Benz 300D to the NTB in Reading for new tires. When they were finished, they informed me that they stripped a lug bolt on one of the wheels. Upon complaining to the manager, he simply stated that the lug was stripped before he got to it and that there was nothing that he would do about it.

My '85 300D is in spotless condition and I usually have the MB dealer service the car. Unfortunately, I took the car to NTB since the tires there were less expensive.

After arriving home, I noticed that all of the wheels have been marred/paint chipped off of each. The wheels were recently painted prior to my purchacing it in 11'98. They were in excellent shape. I did not contact the NTB mgr. on this matter since I was so poorly treated the first time. To reinstall the lug bolt cost $40.00 at the MB dealer. IS there anything that I can do in this matter? The wheels to be painted costs in the range of about $300.00 and to replace the lug was $40.00.

Like John of Rockford, John of Dublin can write a letter, then go to Small Claims Court

Philip of Aberdeen, MD:
I saw an ad in the newspaper about a sale on alloy rims. I had just bought my first car and wanted to make it look good so my father and I rode to Bel Air to check out the deal. The rims looked good and I paid for them in full with my graduation money. After they were installed I got home and noticed a cap had popped off.

My father called NTB minutes later to inform them what had happened. They stated that they already knew what had happend and they already ordered a cap set and it was to be put on Tuesday, June 6th. All this and I was never informed of any of it. The day the cap was replaced I sat in the store for about four hours waiting for it to be replaced.

Earlier this month (July 2000) I noticed another loose cap which eventually came loose while I was driving. It has done so more than once and is very embarrassing. They also have scratches on the caps from the installation process.

Jason of Murrysville, PA:
June 6th, took car in for an alingment, when they were done I took my car and left. I noticed that even though the car was going straight, the steering wheel was cock-eyed, crocked, not straight up and down like it should have been. I said nothing.

August 2nd, I purchased wheels and tires elsewhere and had NTB. mount and balance wheels at their shop. Specifically asked for tape-on weights, they put on the kind that jam onto the rim, and they also chewed up the inside of the rim puting the tire on. Once again nothing was said, no big deal until August 25th when I took my car there again. Now this is the third time I gave them business.

On the 25th I took my car in to get it realigned because I changed my suspension, and to rebalance the tires with the correct wheel weights, tape-on wheel weights. No big deal, I'm a paying customer. After they had completed the job I got my car and drove home. Once home I inspected the vehicle to make sure no damage was done. Well when getting around to look at the final rim I noticed a nick in my new rim that I hadn't had there before. The day before I had just detailed my car and I KNOW THAT IT WAS NOT THERE BEFORE I TOOK IT TO NTB. Now had I hit a curb or anything at all, there would have been more damage than a nick in the rim. The whole rim would have been destroyed. It looks like they bumped it with a tool or impact gun or something.

When I went back to confront them about them about the problem, first off I was shunned and basically ignored, not to mention that I seemed to be a GREAT BIG BURDEN to them for pointing this out. Finally when they eventually looked at the rim, I got the same old "Well, we didn't do it, how would we have done it?" I have no idea how, I wasn't in the shop working on the car!

I am one of those people who knows every inch of my vehicle. I pay hard-earned money for what I have, I shouldn't have to worry about it when I take it somewhere to get it serviced. After they had refused to be of any help, not to mention being rude, the person asks me "What did you expect to get out of this by bringing this back up here?" and my response was "Well, I didn't expect one of my rims to be damged when I originally brought it here, thats what I didn't expect.

I take my car to shows, am in a club for VW's. I love my car. Now I have an eyesore on one of my rims, and the only way to fix the problem is through my own money, fixing a problem that should never have happened. Or should have at least been taken care of in a professional manner.

Jason should never take his beloved bug to a franchise or chain service center. He needs to find a local, independently-owned garage run by someone who loves cars as much as he does. It can be hard to find such places but it's well worth the trouble.

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