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Dealer horror stories

Tomos™ dealers just can't get it right some times. The June 2000 poll results indicate that more than half of the moped users aren't satisfied with their local moped/service shop. As this text is primarily intended for eliminating future mishandling, no dealer titles are included herein (except in the Hell's Angels section), but the people responsible will surely recognize themselves. After all, they do have one of the highest dealer margins in the motorcycle business and should therefore act accordingly.
If you have your own dealer story, please contribute it via online form below. Let's hope we can all learn from this editorial.


Your dealer story


E-mail:

Good ones

From Sparling (Email):
I can honestly say, my delaer is good (Grants Small motors in Sydney BC). I've had my Tomos Targa for 1 year, put 7200 km on it, in all weather. and the few problem's it's had have been fixed fast (Hell, Grant even sent Eric, the mechanic out in his own Pickup to get me when I was stranded by a flat tire on a late friday afternoon. I was fixed and back on the road in the morning!) The only problem I've had, I can't blame on them, its a parts problem. The drive chain keeps stretching out of tolerance. I'm now on my third chain and Grant is trying to get Tomos to supply a better chain. (yes, we're using the heavy duty chain). This dealer should be held up as an example to others of how to do customer service. Well Done Grant!

Hell's Angels

From Seth (Email):
I'm going to call the moped shop and demand my Tomos back... IT'S BEEN LIKE ALMOST 3 MONTHS NOW~~!!. I think they should have it done, don't you?
>Man, I went there today to pick up my ped, and the damn thing didn't start, so they said they'd have it running in another 2 hours, so I waited, and the DAMN ASSHOLEs came back and said that it was dead and I had a bad crank case seal,(main seal that keeps the trans. oil from entering the combustion chamber) and that it would cost another $300 to $400 dollars to replace that!! So I just payed them what I owed them and left!! My question is too you, if the thing was running great until the carb. got broken, which, even when the carb. choke was broke, I could still get it to run, and stay running. Now it has to have the plug taken out and a starting spray (ether) put in it just to fire up for like 20 seconds, and it won't idle, it just runs wide open then dies. Wouldn't you think that it was their fault?? They charged me $280 dollars to fix it, and now its worse than it was, because it won't run or start at all!! I'm going back there next week and raising hell!!
>Yea, get this too, the guy also told me that when they brought the bike in they checked the compression before they worked on it and it was good... Now all of a sudden, they've done work on it (which to be honest I'm not sure what they even did) and some guy (that was on vacation when I came to get the bike) had it running, and had riden it around a lot I was told, and when I come to pick it up now my oil seal is bad!! Now, if my seal is bad I wouldn't have any compression and the bike wouldn't run, right? Well I think they have messed up something with that carb., because even though they replaced the choke assembly, it still feels like its broke, because originally, when you flipped the bar to the "On choke" position, when you gave it gas wide open, it would automactially flip to the "Choke off" position, and it doesn't do that now.. Also, I was looking at my bill, and they put a bunch of crap on it that I didn't ask for, or want.. Like new pedals, an exaust end cap, etc. I should have just gotten a new carb. instead of dealing with these idiots, but thats alright, I'll get them back, and trust me, If I go back there, I'm taking my little tape recorder in there.. Would you go back there and demand that the ped gets fixed at no extra charge? I think thats what I'm going to do, and if they refuse, I'll threaten to take them to court!!
>Well, the shop called my house today after I left them a message to call me back yesterday... I recorded him saying quote "the bike had good compression when I brought it in", and according to him, he said they checked it even after they determined it was the seal that is SUPPOSE to be bad,it still had good compression. Now how can that be if the seal is bad, it wouldn't have good compression,right? I can't believe they are telling me this crap, and then refusing to fix whatever they did to it... They told me that they are a licensed Tomos dealer. Man, is there anything I can do to get my ped fixed without having to pay any additional costs? I believe that they owe it too me, after all, it ran JUST fine before they worked on it, (besides not wanting to start quick because the choke assembly was broke.) I asked them if they would fix whatever they said was wrong with it for no additional charge and they gave me a flat NO! The only thing they said is that they would take the bike, and give me my money back in exchange, WHAT A DEAL! YEAH RIGHT@@! I don't know what to do, and I don't know what they did to my bike, all I know is that it still has good compression (they even told me it did!!), and if that seal was bad it wouldn't have good compression, so I'm still thinking that its something they did to the carb, or something else..
>I decided to go ahead and give them my ped and get my money back, I know I got burnt, but either way I was loosing money, I'm waiting on another half of the money that I wrote from a check that they said needed 10 working days to clear or some crap like that. Either way I still got ripped off. I didn't throw away my Tomos, I didn't really have a choice. But I decided to have some pro's fix it, BIG MISTAKE!!!

Due to the extremeness of this situation and the fact that it has been recorded on tape here's the full address of this moped dealer to discredit him to full extent: Cycle Center- 5120 Peters Creek Road, Roanoke, Virginia 24019, USA.
These people aren't just a local moped dealer, they're an official Tomos dealer. To top it all off, this event was known to Tomos Products US, but they didn't do a thing about it. Any good lawyers out there?

Ignorant mechs

From Karsten Johansson, MROC:
It's been a year now. My tomos is /still/ in the shop. Apparently they lost my keys now, and since they've managed to drain all the gas somehow, they can't put gas back in it. Also, they are refusing to do the recall alterations, so I have to go elsewhere for that. What a pain! One should never buy anything from Addison on Bay.
From Karsten Johansson, MROC:
My Tomos Targa LX has broken down bit-by-bit, so that all the plastic parts except for one are held on now by duct tape because all the screw mounts have cracked. This started a month after I bought it. That was 7 months ago, and the dealer --- (in --- Canada) have been slagging the dog, and have not managed to fix anything on it yet. Too bad the plastic (as well as the service) is entirely crap, because the engine is great.
From Chevelle7d (Email):
my friend had just bought an old Tomos for $150. it had no spark, but other than that, it looked goo, the generator worked, and everything else was good. i took it to my local Tomos dealer, told him the problem, and asked him if he could fix it. he looked at it for a minute, and told me to take it back toi the person i bought it from, and demand my money back! i felt pretty bad at this point, but i wasnt ready to give up. after 2 days of messsing with the ignition, i found that the timing was off! that was the only thing wrong with it. it ran like a tank after that. some help that dealer was!
From Mike (Email):
I have a used Tomos moped, with a A5 engine, and the transmission was making a lot of noise, so after calling the local repair shop for advice, I filled the transmission with 10 w 30 synthetic motor oil. This quieted the noise but the moped is now running a lot slower and it does not want to shift when going up hills.
>Well I called another shop and got some more bad advice, he said "that transmission doesn't give a rat's ass what you put in it".
From Tim (Email):
we put 10 40 motor oil and drained out the transmission oil because they said to use motor oil in and we did it didn't help or do any thing it wouldn't shift only into 1st gear not into second we are thinking of taking it apart
From Chester (Email):
I had recently had my carb enlarged from a 60 to 63 by my local scooter shop. However, my old dealer told me that installing the jet "would actually account for the slower speed." The people at --- also wanted to install a Hotter spark plug, but my old dealer said that I actually needed a colder one.
>So I checked the spark plug and it turns out I need a hotter plug. How do i know if a plug is hotter or not. I went to --- today and asked for a hotter plug, but they simply told me that my plug was "fine" and brushed me off. So now I am forced to shop at a motorcycle shop but I don't know anything about spark plugs..
>I really can't afford to piss them off. They're the only shop around here that'll work on Tomos mopeds. Al the other places wouldn't even go near my moped. Let's just say they have a monopoly on maintenance and repair on Tomos and other "foreign" brands.
>Just got my moped back from --- (looks like they are giving me more headache than "---"). My left rear turn signal was working half the time, so I brought it over on monday. I was told that I needed to leave my moped there for "sometime" (she didn't say how long, and Told me they were real buzy). I uderstand their situation, but she never even give me an estimate on how long it would take to have my moped looked at. SO I left it there. The nexy day, I called them and asked them if my moped was even looked at. That #@%$$@ (I really hate her), told me in a very stern tone that "if you moped was looked I would've given you a call." So I got frustrated, I was thinking "jeez how long is she talking about?" After walking 2 miles from school to a friend's store, I told my friend what had happened. He told me that he had looked over my moped, and the problem was the wiring above the plug (it needed to be rewired). So he callled --- very politely and asked to talk to ---. He then told her he knew what was the problem and how to fix it. Accroding to my friend, he was not given a reply (that #@$% just didn't say anything). SO after a few sec, she said "WHY didn't you fix it?" ANyways, after my friend explained that he didn't have the tools at the store. They said They called me back when they have a chance to look at it. After 2 minutes, she called at my friend's store (must've *69 him) and told him that he was worng. And that the turn signal switch needed to be replaced. So after all the this I called her back asking how much they would charge to fix this. I found out that it was $35, for a simple plug in. It's not like they've work on this for an hour, it was only 2 minutes! I really hate dealing with that girl. The owner is much more polite and usually gives a prompt response. It's always like this...
>My rear turn signal is acting up again!!! SO I went back to --- today to tell them that they dind't fix it. When I came in to the store, I told K. that the signal's acting up again The first theing she does was SIGH and said DID you dumb the moped??? Jeez, I should be the one giving the attitude after paying $35 for them to connect to wires in the turn signal switch on the handle bar. Anyways, she then told me that I have to come back on monday and that they can't even look at it today. I should ask the webmaster of Moped.org if there are any other Tomos maintanance shops around --- besides --- or better yet I should just called the North Carolina Tomos exported and complain about the level of quailty of their dealerships...It's really sad, because at this point in time I "feel" like just selling off my Tomos and just buy a honda scooter so I can go to other dealers.
>Update on "rear right signal problem": I thought it was fixed, however after 2-3 days the problem started again! So I brought it to the shop that was responsible for it and told them about it. The owner told me that the turn signal switch on the handle bar was corroded (on a new Tomos targa lx???) and that they had clean the wire the last time (which they charged me $35 and told me they had to replace the switch...). Being a saturday, the owner would not work on it and thus told me to bring it on monday (8/7/00). So when I brought it in I had ask that --- how much would it be to fix this problem (a problem that was supposedly fixed the last time!), her reply was that "I can't tell you how much until we've looked at it." This seems normal, but she was the person who was responsible for my bike the last time, and now she's thinking of charging me again?! THis is getting me really mad, I can't beleive that they would even think about charging me for a problem that was supposed to be fixed and also they had lied about how they fixed it they last time. Well, I'll wait and see if they'll really charge me. IF they do, I'm gonna to report this to the BBB (I have LOTS of time since summer school is over) and post my incident on all moped related newsgroups/msg boards. They won't get away with cheating me! I'm also planning to report this problem to the Tomos company in the US...This is really getting me MAD. Those damn bastards!
>Ok, I received a call around 11 am this mourning. They told me that the turn signal switch was messed up and that they need to file a warranty claim with Tomos and it would take a few days. I am actually gald that they done their jobs this time, but keep in mind that I already had paid them $35 the last time to fis the same problem... So tech they owe me $35 for something that sould've been covered by warranty. Well, I guess I'll travel using my JD Razor "scooter" until my Tomos is out of the shop...*sigh*
It's been awhile. I got my moped back about a week. They didn't refund the $35 they've charged earlier. Oh well... I guess I'm just happy to have my moped back.
From Arthour (Moped Mailing List digest):
I'm having a persistent shift-speed problem with my new Tomos Targa moped, bought from a dealer in ---. The moped now has about 600 miles on it and is still under warranty. I am 54 years old, and after a few heart attacks, I am no longer under warranty! But I love the moped. Ever since I bought it 2 weeks ago, the moped has had recurring problems with the upshift to second gear occurring at about 17-19 mph, which is way past the torque peak of the engine in first gear. The result is that when starting off the moped from a stop, the engine revs up considerably in first gear before finally getting the moped fast enough to switch to 2nd gear. However, after passing about 15 mph in first gear, further acceleration is very little, and it feels as if the speed will "never" get high enough to enable the upshift. In fact, this problem creates an intolerable safety problem in traffic: after a decent start, the speed flattens out as the moped is still straining in first gear, and cars behind me aren't expecting the sudden lack of acceleration at such a low speed. This problem was fixed once by the dealer, through a "factory-authorized" series of radial cuts in the clutch face, which is supposed to improve transmission oil flow through the clutch. It worked fine after that, with the upshift occurring around 13-14 mph. That is clearly about the best speed to upshift for smooth acceleration to 30mph. However, another problem developed about 100 miles later, a screw coming loose inside the engine that caused it to lock up. That too was fixed, but immediately afterwards, the old upshift-speed problem recurred. In addition, the upshift itself happens very slowly, with only a gradual settling into 2nd gear. The dealer says that only a new clutch will fix the problem (covered under warranty). In addition, I wonder whether the characteristics of the transmission oil might affect the upshift speed. The manual calls for DEXRON Type A, and I presume that's what the dealer uses.
>You may be interested to learn that I have since solved the upshift problem on my own, without the dealer's intervention; it turned out exactly according to the advice I received from several of you who urged me to check and make SURE the correct oil was in the transmission. Sure enough, the dealer had filled the transmission case with MOTOR oil! Not being able to find any Type A Suffix A fluid around here, I drained the motor oil and replaced it with 220 cc of synthetic DEXRON MERCON auto trans oil, and presto - a properly-functioning moped! For the benefit of any readers who may have occasion to use the dealer where I bought the bike, I'll mention the name: ---, in ---. Avoid them for reparing mopeds (but I think they may be the ONLY Tomos dealer in the --- area). They work mostly on motorcycles, and very rarely sell a moped.
>I'm more than a bit surprised to find that the dealer filled the transmission case with motor oil (something that he claims is also authorized by the factory rep - hard to believe). Well, I did my part at least, in changing the oil myself, and I'm glad I did! However, now that the moped is shifting properly with the new oil in it, the dealer isn't likely to be willing to replace the clutch now. If I were sneaky, I could put the motor oil back in there, not say anything about the "fix" I had done, and then have him replace the clutch as he suggested earlier.

Irresponsible and superficial

From Staub02 (Email):
I am looking for a Tomos three-wheeler or a kit no one in South Carolina responds to my e-mails can you help???????????????
From Nancy (Email):
I bought a Tomos 2000 series and I'm trying to get a license for it. I'm told that it violates the specs of a "MOPED" in the state of Ohio and is considered a Motor Cycle, HOWEVER, it's a Moped so I can't get a motorcycle license for it. I can't be the only one going through this. What do i do now. I can't even take it on the street.
>I'm very frustrated. I just got off the phone with the dealer I bought it from and he's talking in circles.
From Daniel (Email):
The guys at Tomos Products US never reply to my e-mails, I don't exactly trust them to much..
From Steven (Email):
I just bought a Targa LX and it was sold to me under false statements the people who sold it to me said that it would be fine for my weight I read the stats on the Moped and it said the max. weight rating was 250lbs. They said that I would be fine on the moped my weight is around 300lbs I was wondering if this cause the engine to burn out before the four years that is on the loan that I have signed.

The greedy bunch

From David (Moped Mailing List digest):
i just got back from my local and ONLY moped dealer in my area... i was looking forward to buying my first moped, the Tomos Targa LX, and i was ready to pay around 1200 for it... well i guess since there isnt much competition (none?) they decided they could tack on an extra $400 dollars, which quite frankly im not ready to pay. this dealer is the only one listed in the phone book, & im really hoping i can find another source!
From proof (Moped Mailing List digest):
I am not calling anyone a cheat. But maybe i am just not with it. I bought my moped because i thought it would be transportation. So, dutifully following the Tomos manual's advice, I took the bike in for the 300 mile checkup (actually 300 kilometers - but i did not know about the odometer thing at the time). I was charged $113. Nothing was replaced but the spark plug. So please tell me if that is outrageous to you. If it is not, and that is what it costs to maintain a moped, then i will be getting rid of mine.