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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Just say NO to dealer-installed options!!!! - and to Fladeboe Honda

I got a bunch of stuff thrown into my deal, roof-rack, fog lights, backup sensors, XM radio, etc. When I got the car back after the stuff was installed, EVERYTHING Ray Fladeboe Honda touched was screwed up (and these options basically involve gutting the interior, removing bumpers, and gutting the bed). I doubt they will ever be able to get things back to factory specs. Not to mention all the rattles and squeaks the car now has.

So unless you have a long standing relationship with your Honda dealer, and know they do very good work, just say NO to dealer-installed options.

PS - Honda will not do anything about the situation. So much for Honda quality and service. And here's the list of what Fladeboe screwed up (and I know they did it because I had gone over the RL carefully before taking it in so they could fix any factory issues):

1. Holes drilled for back-up sensors WAY too big, they added funky washers to try to hide. Even with washers the sensors move around, exposing gaps through bumper.
2. Rattle in dash.
3. Hole in side bed panel missing plug.
4. Right taillight noticably crooked.
5. Drivers door-opening plasitc trim piece loose.
6. Right bed side top trim not seating properly, and clips may be smashed.
7. Right plastic moulding from bed to roof not seated properly, gap too large and uneven.
8. Rear window trim “cockeyed”.
9. Rear roof panel loose by left roof-rack rail.
10. Front bed panel to bottom panel either missing a seal or not mated properly. Can see holes that are not visible on stock vehicles.
11. Rear mudflaps missing screws and very loose.
12. Backup switch on dash doesn’t seat.
13. Left front roof channel trim piece loose.
14. Front left wheelwell not engaged with bumper, right front poorly engaged.
15. Gap in right center pillar trim at headliner.
16. FM radio reception seems poorer, check antenna cable for nicks and that connector is seated.
17. Stains on carpet at left of center dash console.
18. Fingerprints on right visor.
19. Carpet not seated properly under right front side trim, by passengers right foot.
20. Carpet under rear seat stained and has gouge marks.
21. Plastic under-shield and bumper seem loose by front tow-hook. Corresponding area on the other side is firmly attached to frame.
22. Bottom of left foglight loose. Check foglight alignment.
23. Several bedliner Torx bolt-heads are stripped. Install all new bolts in front and right side panels using hand tools, and torque to spec.
24. Cable hanging down under steering column.
25. Bumpers mated to fenders poorly. Reinstall bumper to factory specs, using a stock vehicle for comparison.
26. Left dash end-panel loose.
27. Glovebox door sticks out on right side.
28. Plastic trim panel below right rear seat loose.
29. Right rear seat release mechanism no longer works properly when in the down position.
30. Large gap under rear right roof-rail at rear roof trim panel.


Things that I fixed myself:
a. Dash facia panel not seated.
b. Rear roof panel screw-hole covers loose.
c. Green and black right F/R door seals not seated.
d. Finger print on headliner near XM antenna
 

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I had just the opposite experience, Last week I had Back Up Sensors.Trailer Hitch & Harness,Fog Lamps, Custom Grill,Hood Deflector,Door Visors,Moon Roof Visor, Running Boards,Under Seat Storage, Battery Blanket and a Bug Screen behind the Grill in front of coolers & AC Condensor. Have to say they did an excellent job zero problems. www.meidlhonda.com
But I do feel very strong that major options should be a factory install and leave the minor ones for the dealer. I hope you get your problems resolved.
Londo said:
I got a bunch of stuff thrown into my deal, roof-rack, fog lights, backup sensors, XM radio, etc. When I got the car back after the stuff was installed, EVERYTHING they touched was screwed up (and these options basically involve gutting the interior, removing bumpers, and gutting the bed). I doubt they will ever be able to get things back to factory specs. Not to mention all the rattles and squeaks the car now has.

So unless you have a long standing relationship with your Honda dealer, and know they do very good work, just say NO to dealer-installed options.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
What is the bug screen? My RTL is only two weeks old and while inspecting the dealer's "workmanship", I noticed a lot of bugs/debris clogging the radiators.

Is this something peculiar to the Ridgeline?
 

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I agree with you about dealer installed accessories. It does not make sense to take apart a new truck to install items that could have been installed in the factory. I think its away for the dealers to make more money from you
 

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Discussion Starter #5
The funny thing is that the dealer sold me the options, with installation, at way lower prices than I've seen on this board (in addition to the 5% I got off the sticker). By the time they get done redoing everthing three times they will not make any money off the deal.

But I still wish I had not gotten any of the options that require gutting the RL.
 

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I've looked at the install directions for several of the accessories and it seems Honda made some bad decisions. For example, the fog lights and XM radio require running wires, which requires major disassembly. Seems it wouldn't have cost more than a dollar or so to pre-wire these for all trucks, so all you have to do is snap in the parts. How much can 15 feet of wire cost?

I wonder if the longer design cycle for the base truck prevents knowing what kind of accessories will be in demand once it hits the market. This would explain the rather obsolete separate CD-based MP3 player (the base CD player should be MP3 compatible), and the lack of a Aux input on the base radio for an Ipod or similar. Even so, the design of accessories seems to be a year or two behind current technology.
 

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I would imagine that future trim level packages will contain more options. They will probably include those options that require a lot of work to install (DVD, Back up camera, etc). Heck, the dealers may even beg them to do it. I can't imagine that any dealer likes to nearly disassemble a vehicle just to install an accessory.
 

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Hello all,

although I'm new to this site I do know Honda well. The reason for the dealer installed accessories is so that it does not interrupt production. An interruption in production causes a drop in quality. As nice as it would be to have my Ridge cutom made at the factory i would rather have one that drives 300,000mi with out any major problems. The trick is to contact Honda regarding your local dealerships service quality rating. There are a little 1025 Honda service facilities in the US and all are rated on service quality. Maybe a different dealership would provide a more quality install. Also, don't be afraid to contact Honda customer service in regards to this issue. They will be more than happy to help you rectify the situation.
I hope all goes well and things are returned to normal. please keep me posted as to the outcome.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Well, the last straw occured. The dealer said they were painting a new bumper for me! Yeah right, like I'm going to trust them to do a factory-quality paint job, after all the other stuff they screwed up. I've contacted Honda Customer Service. I'll report back on how they handle the situation.

If Honda resolves this adequately, I'll lay off the dealer, otherwise I'm "name'n names"....
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Honda sucks, Ray Fladeboe sucks

Just got off the phone with Honda "customer care". They said there's nothing they can do about the butcher job the dealer (Ray Fladeboe Honda in Irvine, CA) did on my RL when installing the dealer-installed options I mentioned above.

My advice is to steer clear of the Ridgeline until they get the bugs worked out, and make installing Honda accessories easier for the lame dealers.

And run screaming away from the service department of Ray Fladeboe Honda.
 

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When you spoke to the Honda CSR, did you escalate to the problem manager? If not, do so.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
The initial "customer service" contact set up a "Case #" and assigned it to problem manager. She (some chick named "Gabby", I kid you not) called back after I faxed them my list of issues and said "Sorry, it's the dealer's problem. We only get involved if it was a manufacturing problem."

I asked if they could at least send someone out to inspect the truck to see if things get re-done properly and she said no.

So "caveat emptor" when contemplating dealer-installed options....
 

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Does Honda have zone reps?
Have you discussed this situation with the owner of the dealership?
Contacting a lawyer for a consultation is probably a good idea at this point.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Some pics below. I took it in today and the service manager told the service guys that when anyone touches my RL he wants to be there to personally supervise. Said they will remove all panels, etc. and check the wiring. If it comes back looking like new, all will be forgiven (but I'm still uneasy about getting a dealer-painted bumper).
 

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Ridge Man how was Meidl Honda to deal with? I'm from stoon and found them to be somewhat annoying when we bought our Element from them. It seemed that we knew more about the vehicle than the salesman or any other person there we came into contact with. Just curious...
 

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Discussion Starter #17
The saga continues. The RL has been at the dealer since Monday morning. I just got this email (Thursday P.M.):

"JUST CONTACTING YOU TO SAY THAT EVERYTHING APPEARS TO BE GOING AS PLANNED…. ONE SMALL ISSUE WAS THAT THE BUMPER WE ORDERED HAD A SMALL FLAW IN IT THAT WE COULD SEE AFTER IT WAS PAINTED. THEY ORDERED ANOTHER BUMPER AND SHOULD BE INSTALLED TOMORROW. IF ANYTHING CHANGES I WILL LET YOU KNOW….."


I'm thinking of trading the RL in on and F150 FX-4 Supercrew when I get it back. I'll never buy another Honda, that's for sure.
 

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Londo said:
I'm thinking of trading the RL in on and F150 FX-4 Supercrew when I get it back. I'll never buy another Honda, that's for sure.
Oh come on! That's like getting incorrect change at the grocery store and swearing off US currency for the rest of your life because of it! You're totally right to be upset with the dealer for what they've done, but taking it out on Honda? I can understand going after this dealership, maybe even getting them to buy back the truck they messed up so you can go buy another one from a different dealer, but declaring that you'll never buy another Honda is just rediculous.
 

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I was a bit nervous about getting the backup camera when I heard it was the first one our dealer had installed, but they did a fabulous job on all our mods. I cannot find a single flaw that gives any part of it away as not coming from the factory (which can also have problems, as we know). I love the backup camera and I was happy to pay someone else to put it in for us.

Most workers take pride in their work. They raved at my dealer about how fabulous our Ridge looks now. I think our results are the norm by a longshot.

Londo, I wish you great speed in getting your issues resolved. It would break my heart to have shoddy work done to my truck. You are correct to be outraged. However, expecting that no one should add a thing to their truck is a huge overreaction. It's good to tip people off about that dealer, but don't condemn the whole lot of them over your bad experience. There are happy customers out here too.

I must say that in your rant you went a bit overboard. You found fingerprints and that upset you? Are they black grease or paint, or simply evidence that human beings worked on your truck? Your credibility suffers a bit when you get that petty.

The crack in your photo looks terrible. I'm not quite sure what the other photos were showing us. Could you go back into them and explain what we're looking at?
 

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Discussion Starter #20
The saga continues....

Got the truck back on Friday evening. The new bumper has bad "orange peel", so bad that it makes the bumper look darker than the metal. I compared the finish of the new back bumper to the original front bumper and it's a joke (but I'm not laughing).

Plus, in trying to re-align the side bed-panel, they must have used a screw driver to pry it and they made a nice gouge, down to the metal, in the paint near the right-hand tailgate latch. It's partially behind the bed panel so the bed panel will have to be removed, AGAIN, to sand down and repaint the gouged area.

In addition there are a bunch of minor things they either didn't fix, or caused anew.

As for the fingerprint, it looked like grease, but they got it off. I only left it there so the manager could see all of the nice "handiwork". However, they only got about 2/3 of the stain on the carpet off, it's still visible.

I'm afraid at this point I'm not going to let this dealership work on the truck anymore, as it's just seems to be a downward spiral. They are either going to have to get me a new, unmodified truck, or pay to have another dealer bring it back to proper condition. I've escalated this to the General Manager of the dealership. I'll keep you posted.
 
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