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Was reminded why I hate just walking into parts stores #5158860
07/12/19 05:14 PM
07/12/19 05:14 PM
Joined: Apr 2013
Posts: 2,691
The Northeast
mclasser Offline OP
mclasser  Offline OP

Joined: Apr 2013
Posts: 2,691
The Northeast
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
07/12/19 05:27 PM
Joined: Dec 2014
Posts: 80
Georgia
Electromotive Offline
Electromotive  Offline

Joined: Dec 2014
Posts: 80
Georgia
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
07/12/19 05:27 PM
Joined: Mar 2018
Posts: 1,220
Mississippi
TheLawnRanger Offline
TheLawnRanger  Offline

Joined: Mar 2018
Posts: 1,220
Mississippi
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
Oil: 5w30 synthetic
Filters: Wix 51522 for both
Re: Was reminded why I hate just walking into parts stores [Re: mclasser] #5158885
07/12/19 05:35 PM
07/12/19 05:35 PM
Joined: Jun 2005
Posts: 12,815
Santa Barbara, CA
bdcardinal Offline
bdcardinal  Offline

Joined: Jun 2005
Posts: 12,815
Santa Barbara, CA
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
NRA Benefactor Member
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
07/12/19 05:45 PM
Joined: Sep 2004
Posts: 22,850
Central Florida
Mr Nice Offline
Mr Nice  Offline

Joined: Sep 2004
Posts: 22,850
Central Florida
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
07/12/19 05:46 PM
Joined: Jan 2004
Posts: 5,355
California
nthach Offline
nthach  Offline

Joined: Jan 2004
Posts: 5,355
California
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
07/12/19 06:00 PM
Joined: Apr 2018
Posts: 993
Somewhere in time
Imp4 Offline
Imp4  Offline

Joined: Apr 2018
Posts: 993
Somewhere in time
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+
Grandma's creampuff...
Re: Was reminded why I hate just walking into parts stores [Re: mclasser] #5158909
07/12/19 06:01 PM
07/12/19 06:01 PM
Joined: Mar 2013
Posts: 5,677
The Midwest
skyactiv Offline
skyactiv  Offline

Joined: Mar 2013
Posts: 5,677
The Midwest
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

Re: Was reminded why I hate just walking into parts stores [Re: Imp4] #5158914
07/12/19 06:07 PM
07/12/19 06:07 PM
Joined: Jan 2004
Posts: 5,355
California
nthach Offline
nthach  Offline

Joined: Jan 2004
Posts: 5,355
California
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
07/12/19 06:14 PM
Joined: Mar 2018
Posts: 1,220
Mississippi
TheLawnRanger Offline
TheLawnRanger  Offline

Joined: Mar 2018
Posts: 1,220
Mississippi
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
Filters: Wix 51522 for both
Re: Was reminded why I hate just walking into parts stores [Re: mclasser] #5158936
07/12/19 06:34 PM
07/12/19 06:34 PM
Joined: Jul 2005
Posts: 32,460
NY
demarpaint Offline
demarpaint  Offline

Joined: Jul 2005
Posts: 32,460
NY
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
07/12/19 06:36 PM
Joined: Apr 2006
Posts: 9,491
Birmingham, AL
01rangerxl Offline
01rangerxl  Offline

Joined: Apr 2006
Posts: 9,491
Birmingham, AL
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
07/12/19 06:42 PM
Joined: Jun 2005
Posts: 12,815
Santa Barbara, CA
bdcardinal Offline
bdcardinal  Offline

Joined: Jun 2005
Posts: 12,815
Santa Barbara, CA
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
07/12/19 06:44 PM
Joined: Apr 2010
Posts: 1,708
Suburban Washington DC
atikovi Offline
atikovi  Offline

Joined: Apr 2010
Posts: 1,708
Suburban Washington DC
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
07/12/19 07:06 PM
Joined: Jul 2013
Posts: 569
D/FW Metroplex
The_Nuke Offline
The_Nuke  Offline

Joined: Jul 2013
Posts: 569
D/FW Metroplex
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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