Auto sales and service topped 2022 consumer complaints

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Consumers also cited home repair issues in an annual survey

Some things never change. For the seventh year in a row auto sales and repair produced the most consumer complaints in 2022, according to an analysis by the Consumer Federation of America (CFA).

Some complaints are about the cost of repairs while others cite the quality of the work. Dwight, of Bayshore, N.Y. told us his car seems to be constantly in need of repair.

“I purchased a Ford Escape in 2017,” Dwight wrote in a ConsumerAffairs review. “For the past three years, I’ve been dealing with multiple manufacturing defects and repairs that have rendered my vehicle unusable for extended periods of time. This has had a deleterious effect on many aspects of life, as I have no alternate means of transportation and live in an area where a car is necessary for work.” 

CFA compiled the list of top consumer complaints by looking at the nearly 600,000 consumer complaints filed with various state and local consumer agencies. CFA says these agencies recovered around $743 million on behalf of these consumers.

“It is no surprise that auto sales and repair are the number one complaint category, now for the seventh year in a row,” said Erin Witte, CFA’s director of Consumer Protection. “Consumers rely on cars to get to work, school, doctor’s appointments and more, and these agencies serve a critical role to help consumers when they have suffered harm at the hands of dealers and repair shops.”

Home repair issues

Home repairs and contractors also drew a large number of complaints last year, moving that category into second place on the list. jumped to the number two category. The agencies also field a large number of reports of fraud and scams.

Here are the top 10 complaints in order: 

  1. Auto Sales & Repair

  2. Home Improvement Repairs and Contractors

  3. Consumer Debt & Credit

  4. Retail Purchase Issues

  5. Landlord Tenant 

  6. Frauds and Scams

  7. Healthcare/Wellness

  8. Home Furnishings & Appliances

  9. Utilities

  10. Travel & Moving

In addition to responding to consumer issues, CFA says many consumer agencies were able to provide help last year in other ways. For example, Los Angeles Department of Consumer & Business Affairs created a consumer protection education website hub for foster youth, helping them make good decisions and avoid scams. 

CFA also says the San Francisco District Attorney’s Office helped resolve a $300,000 cryptocurrency scam, and the Florida Department of Consumer & Agriculture Services resolved nearly $1 million in travel-related complaints alone. 

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