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Old 01-10-2004, 11:29 AM   #1
Scooby Newbie
Member#: 10640
Join Date: Sep 2001
Chapter/Region: Tri-State
Location: Does MarcellusWallace
look like a bitch?
Say what again!!

Angry Subaru Roadside Assistance: they WILL let you down

(mods, if this isn't the best place for this story, feel free to put it in the correct forum)

Last night (1/9) I went out to my car to go to my sister's house, where I would stay overnight in preparation for picking her and her husband up from the airport today at 12:30pm. But my car wouldn't start; it cranked briskly but did nothing else. Either a fuel line is frozen or else something is mechanically wrong somewhere.

I called SRA, who said "we can have it towed to a dealer, but they're all closed and wouldn't be able to even begin diagnosis until morning." Since it certainly wouldn't thaw out at a dealer's lot any more than behind my home, and since I didn't want to deal with my car being at some dealer who didn't know what was going on while I was stuck at home, I decided to wait until morning to have it towed.

I woke up this morning at 7am to call SRA again but SRA told me (which they didn't last night) that it's my responsibility to call local dealers to find one who's open and can diagnose the trouble. So, because there's a .5-1 hour delay between me calling SRA and a truck arriving, instead of having my car arrive at a shop right when their doors open, I was going to have to wait until a dealer opened, call SRA again, then wait another .5-1 hr for a truck.

After finding a dealer who's open, I put in my initial request with SRA at 8:45am, and was told to expect a truck in 30 mins-1 hour. When I called at 10am, because there was no truck, the SRA automated system told me a truck would be here by 11. At 10:30 the system told me the truck would be here by 11. When no truck showed up at at 11, I called SRA, who told me that their tow service provider had CANCELLED their truck at before 10:30 ("they don't cover Somerville, but their answering service took the message from SRA and we though they were on it") When I got a supervisor on the line to ask why a) the auto system was still telling me to expect a truck <11 and b) why SRA hadn't called me manually when they learned of the cancellation, the supervisor said they'd tried to phone me, but not on my home number (which I'd been giving as my primary # all morning) but rather on my celphone, which died last night while I was talking to SRA the first time. When I asked why they didn't try ALL numbers listed for me she had no reasonable answer.

So now I've lost an entire day, if one of my business colleagues can't go get my sister from the airport she'll have to take a taxi, and my car might not even make it to a shop early enough today that, if something is mechanically wrong, the dealer can look at it today. I might lose my car for 3 days because the system failed in just about every way, nobody was intelligent enough to catch it, and I didn't PLAN on these mistakes happening to prepare backups.

I'm damn glad my first year of SRA was free; I will not renew it when it comes up. I cancelled my AllState motor-club membership (which I'd had to use twice in the 2 years I was with them, both times with good results) but I will switch back.

This story will be going into a written letter for dispatch to SoA, and I advise all you SRA members out there: PLAN on the system to let you down.

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Old 01-10-2004, 11:35 AM   #2
Scooby Newbie
Member#: 10640
Join Date: Sep 2001
Chapter/Region: Tri-State
Location: Does MarcellusWallace
look like a bitch?
Say what again!!



After talking to SRA at 11:15, who told me they'd put in a priority request, the automated system called me and told me to expect a towtruck in THREE HOURS.

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Old 01-10-2004, 03:49 PM   #3
The Modaholic
Scooby Specialist
Member#: 35632
Join Date: Apr 2003
Chapter/Region: NESIC
Location: Natick, Massachusetts
2004 WRX sedan
Red/ECUTek Stage IV


Somehow. I am not surprised. Send a follow-up letter with a copy of this thread after many members have had a chance to read it.
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Old 01-10-2004, 04:41 PM   #4
Scooby Guru
Member#: 22412
Join Date: Aug 2002
Chapter/Region: SWIC
Location: Albuquerque, NM
2012 Legacy 2.5GT
Ice Silver Metallic


That sucks - good to know, though - we have always had AAA, which tends to be pretty reliable when it comes to getting someone over to give you a tow, jump start, unlock the car, etc. - even when after hours - they have always treated us well in the four states we have lived in (and one other when we were in transit once) since getting them.

I'm surprised the dealer could/would do anything today - the service shops here are all closed on Saturday (though the delership itself is open)
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Old 01-21-2004, 02:15 PM   #5
Scooby Newbie
Member#: 53140
Join Date: Jan 2004

Sorry to say, but I've had better luck with Roadside. I locked my keys in the car in Newark, NJ...and someplace I knew many wouldn't want to go. It took them all of 30 minutes to come...That's service.
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Old 01-21-2004, 03:44 PM   #6
Scooby Specialist
Member#: 32371
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: formerly known as mem. # 10615
'02 t-rex wagon


bummer of a story

btw, isnt' the service good for 3yrs/36000 miles?

thank goodness i never had to use it

one more thing, did u try starting the car again? ya mention thawing out, just curios
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Old 01-22-2004, 10:38 AM   #7
Scooby Specialist
Member#: 18074
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: Norman, Oklahoma
2008 Speed3


I see obvious mistakes made by SRA, but the problems usually begin with local towing companies. As I said, it's obvious that SRA dropped the ball, but the local folks tend to be the source of any problems. I just used SRA yesterday to tow my car to Albuquerque and it went great; I'm still paranoid as hell since I know that a local towing company had my car for four hours and I still haven't heard from the dealer as to whether or not my car arrived (I'm gonna call now and find out).
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Old 01-22-2004, 10:49 AM   #8
Scooby Specialist
Member#: 12901
Join Date: Dec 2001
Chapter/Region: South East
Location: Miami Springs, FL
2005 STi/95 VX
Pastelito Racing / SFSOC


Luckily I have never had to use it yet, but I have always had AAA with my other cars that has never let me done. Sorry to hear about your experience. Definitely bring it up with SOA asap.

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Old 01-22-2004, 02:37 PM   #9
Scooby Guru
Member#: 15106
Join Date: Feb 2002

sorry to hear about your experience.

that is complete bs. they need to do a much better
job then that if they want to keep its customers happy and

they should stop spending money on worthless newsletters
and use it towards helping its customers in need.
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Old 01-22-2004, 08:36 PM   #10
Scooby Specialist
Member#: 38397
Join Date: Jun 2003
Chapter/Region: MWSOC
Location: Ann Arbor, MI
2002 Lovemachine


When we got into an accident, I couldn't tell whether or not the car was still drivable because it was dark out. Since I didn't see anything leaking under the hood, I decided to call SRA to ask if they can send somebody to look and tell me if it's driveable.

"Sorry sir, all we are authorized to do is order a tow truck". It wasn't even SRA that picked up, it was some place in Colorado. She asked me about make and model, although I just gave her my name and VIN number.

To make a long story short, had it towed to my house (3 mile trip = $85). On the way to the body shop the next day, I'm on the on ramp to I94. Smoke coming from the engine, small hole in the radiator. I'm glad I didn't drive it home in the dark, as I would have probably not seen the smoke.

I'm disappointed by "SRA" though.
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