• Report:  #89939

Complaint Review: Ernie Palmer's Westside Toyota - Jacksonville, Florida Florida

Reported By:
- O.P., Florida,

Ernie Palmer's Westside Toyota
1310 Cassat Ave Jacksonville, Florida, 32205 Florida, U.S.A.
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If you have an older Toyota and live in the Jacksonville, Florida area DO NOT take it to Ernie Palmers Westside Toyota's Service Department!

Our 1992 Toyota Previa had a rusted freeze plug which luckily let go in our driveway on a Friday night. The car NEVER overheated or gave us any indication that this was going to be a problem.

We had the car towed to Westside Toyota that day and were informed by the service writer what the problem was and that they would fix it. He told me that the engine was rusted and that it was a problem that had mostlikely ruined my engine. I asked him about flushing the engine and he told me that it wouldn't do any good as the rust was going to still be in the engine and that it would be rusty again immediatley.

I picked the car up and it almost immediatley overheated. I called and the dealership had it towed back to their service department.The following day they called me and said that the car was not overheating for them and that I should come and pick it up that evening.

I called the service manager the next day to inform him that I would not be picking the car up until they diagnosed the overheating problem. He informed me that they could not diagnose the problem unless it actually overheated. That day the car overheated and the call that I received from the service writer was that they "thought" it was the thermostat. I told him that my understanding was that they would know exactly what was wrong if the car overheated, apparently now that was not the case, he still was not sure.

They replaced the thermostat and my husband picked the car up, it overheated again about 10 miles from the dealership! Now the story was that if we wanted to have it towed to the dealership again we "might" have to pay for tow and of course the repair.

I asked the service writer if they could flush the engine as he commented again about the rust etc. he said that the radiator was hard to get at and that he supposed that "they could stick a hose in the radiator". What? I asked if they didn't have a way to flush the engine and he said they did not.

Now I had a car that was sitting in my driveway after $400 dollars worth of work that was overheating and the "Certified Toyota"dealership was telling me that they didn't have anyway of diagnosing what the problem was.

My conversation with Mike Palmer the owner of the dealership went about the same way. He said that "our engine had a terminal problem". That "we have no way of knowing what is wrong with your engine" and that "it is your own fault for not maintaining our car properly".

Well Mr. Palmer, I took my car to a little old man who removed my radiator acid washed it, flushed the system and when the car was still overheating DIAGNOSED that the waterpump was not working. He replaced the water pump and my car is now NOT OVERHEATING. Richard the man who fixed my car told me that the engine was in GREAT shape and that we had no reason to believe that it would not run for quite a while longer.

I would stongley suggest to anyone with an older Toyota that you do not take it to any of the local Toyota dealerships, it is clear to me that their intention is to sell you a new car by making you believe that your old one is beyond repair.

Once again I would like Bruce Ertman at Toyota Corporate to know that I will NEVER BUY another Toyota. Because of the dishonest incompetent dealerships in Florida we are buying Honda when we replace our TWO CAMRYS AND OUR PREVIA VAN!

-A former loyal Toyota customer


O.P., Florida

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