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Was reminded why I hate just walking into parts stores #5158860 07/12/19 05:14 PM
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mclasser Offline OP
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I needed caliper pin bushings in a jiffy and AZ had them in stock. I tried ordering online for store pickup but the site was acting glitchy. I thought no biggie, I'll just go in with the part number and the guy can quickly pull the item. Walked in and the place was a mess. There was a long line and only one poor associate juggling phone calls and checking people out. In the corner was a "commercial accounts" register with two associates just standing around. I don't get why these guys can't provide backup when there's a long line. It was finally my turn and the cashier apologized for the wait. I sympathized with the guy and said no worries. He pulled my part, I thanked the guy and left.

I was reminded why I love ordering stuff online. But sometimes, you need things in a rush and got to deal with the in-store shopping experience.


2018 Hyundai Elantra VE
2013 Honda Pilot EX-L 4WD
2002 Honda Accord EX-L

Re: Was reminded why I hate just walking into parts stores [Re: mclasser] #5158872 07/12/19 05:27 PM
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Electromotive Offline
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That's about typical service for the big box auto part stores in my area.

Re: Was reminded why I hate just walking into parts stores [Re: mclasser] #5158874 07/12/19 05:27 PM
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TheLawnRanger Offline
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The AZs in my area aren't like that. I would report that location to headquarters. I'm sure you're not the only unsatisfied customer.


2011 Impala
2012 Colorado
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Re: Was reminded why I hate just walking into parts stores [Re: mclasser] #5158885 07/12/19 05:35 PM
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bdcardinal Offline
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So I work back counter, meaning I help the technicians, plus I also answer phone calls from both the public and wholesale accounts. We have a dedicated front counter person but when there is a line I will go help them. Now if there is a line of technicians I am supposed to give them priority since the service department is our biggest customer.


2014 Ford Mustang GT Track Pack
1995 Ford Mustang GT

Ford/Mazda Parts Counter
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Opinions expressed are my own.
Re: Was reminded why I hate just walking into parts stores [Re: mclasser] #5158898 07/12/19 05:45 PM
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Mr Nice Offline
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Originally Posted by mclasser
I needed caliper pin bushings in a jiffy and AZ had them in stock. I tried ordering online for store pickup but the site was acting glitchy. I thought no biggie, I'll just go in with the part number and the guy can quickly pull the item. Walked in and the place was a mess. There was a long line and only one poor associate juggling phone calls and checking people out. In the corner was a "commercial accounts" register with two associates just standing around. I don't get why these guys can't provide backup when there's a long line. It was finally my turn and the cashier apologized for the wait. I sympathized with the guy and said no worries. He pulled my part, I thanked the guy and left.

I was reminded why I love ordering stuff online. But sometimes, you need things in a rush and got to deal with the in-store shopping experience.

Yep. Same exact problem at Pep Boys.

Re: Was reminded why I hate just walking into parts stores [Re: mclasser] #5158899 07/12/19 05:46 PM
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nthach Offline
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IMO, I had better experiences at O'Reilly compared to AZ. I usually go the store by my parent's place and both the assistant store managers know me, but their underlings do a decent job with everyone.

If I go to AZ, I'm prepared to fight if need be.

Re: Was reminded why I hate just walking into parts stores [Re: nthach] #5158908 07/12/19 06:00 PM
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Imp4 Offline
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Originally Posted by nthach

If I go to AZ, I'm prepared to fight if need be.

Yikes! Rough neighborhood???


2001 Mitsubishi Galant 2.4 - 165k+
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Re: Was reminded why I hate just walking into parts stores [Re: mclasser] #5158909 07/12/19 06:01 PM
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skyactiv Offline
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I was at a Menards today to buy charcoal and the store was fully staffed with employees. My wife and I was asked by several different employees if we needed help as we were walking through the store.
We get to the checkouts and only two lanes are open with several people waiting in line. Three employees, one appearing to be a member of management, was in plain view of the situation laughing and talking to each other.

Napa Auto Parts stores have always been bad for walk in customers as they cater to garages and I guess many of them still order by phone.


Wife: 15' Audi A4 quattro 6 speed manual
Me: 13' VW GTI 3 door 6 speed manual
2018 Elantra Sport 6 speed manual


Re: Was reminded why I hate just walking into parts stores [Re: Imp4] #5158914 07/12/19 06:07 PM
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nthach Offline
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Originally Posted by Imp4
Originally Posted by nthach

If I go to AZ, I'm prepared to fight if need be.

Yikes! Rough neighborhood???

Not just that but just plain idiocy at AZ in general.

I've spent a fair bit of time in the 'hood growing up so I have my street smarts.

Re: Was reminded why I hate just walking into parts stores [Re: nthach] #5158924 07/12/19 06:14 PM
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TheLawnRanger Offline
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O'Reilly is my first choice. AZ usually has what I need when O'Reilly doesn't and vice versa. O'Reilly's seems to be run more like a local store where AZ has more of a corporate feel where the manager's hands are tied.


2011 Impala
2012 Colorado
Oil: 5w30 synthetic
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Re: Was reminded why I hate just walking into parts stores [Re: mclasser] #5158936 07/12/19 06:34 PM
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demarpaint Offline
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It's no different here, and most of the time the help is clueless.


God Bless Our Troops

Re: Was reminded why I hate just walking into parts stores [Re: mclasser] #5158937 07/12/19 06:36 PM
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01rangerxl Offline
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All of the retail stores around here are usually a wait. I hate going to any of them.

The problem is a lot of times customers come in waves, so the store may have dead periods, but then gets overwhelmed with three customers. It's not profitable to have a bunch of staff, but the bare minimum will get backed up quickly. Also, the majority of customers probably don't have a part number, don't really know what they want, and may not even know what the car is.

We have pretty good coverage at the dealership I work at. It's rare a customer has to wait more than a few minutes unless we are really short handed, but there are times when we get multiple customers who need lots of assistance and it's hard to get them on their way...they'll start walking out the door, then turn around and "hey man, one more question, I've got a 1995 Silverada Southern Comfort conversion, I know you're busy, but can you tell me all sorts of random information about it for the next 15 minutes?"


2002 Ford Ranger XLT | 3.0 V6 Auto 2WD | 231K miles
1994 Ford Ranger STX | 4.0 V6 Manual 4X4 | 201K miles
1994 Ford Explorer XLT | 4.0 V6 Auto 4X4 | 250K miles
Re: Was reminded why I hate just walking into parts stores [Re: 01rangerxl] #5158943 07/12/19 06:42 PM
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bdcardinal Offline
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Originally Posted by 01rangerxl
All of the retail stores around here are usually a wait. I hate going to any of them.

The problem is a lot of times customers come in waves, so the store may have dead periods, but then gets overwhelmed with three customers. It's not profitable to have a bunch of staff, but the bare minimum will get backed up quickly. Also, the majority of customers probably don't have a part number, don't really know what they want, and may not even know what the car is.

We have pretty good coverage at the dealership I work at. It's rare a customer has to wait more than a few minutes unless we are really short handed, but there are times when we get multiple customers who need lots of assistance and it's hard to get them on their way...they'll start walking out the door, then turn around and "hey man, one more question, I've got a 1995 Silverada Southern Comfort conversion, I know you're busy, but can you tell me all sorts of random information about it for the next 15 minutes?"


Yup, on Saturdays we only have one person working in the department. Usually there will be 2 hours of nothing and then 2 techs walk in, all 6 phone lines light up, and 3 people wander onto the front counter. They always say "you need more people working" to which I say "nope, I was cleaning shelves the past 2 hours in silence."


2014 Ford Mustang GT Track Pack
1995 Ford Mustang GT

Ford/Mazda Parts Counter
NRA Benefactor Member
Opinions expressed are my own.
Re: Was reminded why I hate just walking into parts stores [Re: mclasser] #5158948 07/12/19 06:44 PM
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atikovi Offline
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Caliper pin bushings? Wouldn't surprise me if the dealer was cheaper than the chain store.

Re: Was reminded why I hate just walking into parts stores [Re: atikovi] #5158964 07/12/19 07:06 PM
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The_Nuke Offline
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Originally Posted by atikovi
Caliper pin bushings? Wouldn't surprise me if the dealer was cheaper than the chain store.


Price of the part is rarely the deciding factor when I am deciding whether or not to go OEM from dealership or aftermarket from parts house.

Hours of operation, time of travel to store and back, expected wait time, previous experiences at location - any of those can override a lower price on a part I need to buy.

Unfortunately for the dealership, it has poor marks in most all of those areas for me. So they do not get as much of my business when buying parts...


2012 Charger Pursuit aka "The Bacon Hauler"
- 5.7L + NAG1 (A5) + 2.65 (215mm)
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