Why I Will Never Shop At Advance Auto In Central, SC Again

Yep, that’s what I said. I will never shop at Advance Auto in Central, SC again. The customer service tonight was absolutely the most horrible customer service I’ve ever experienced at any Advance Auto location.

Hubby and I headed in tonight to get a few things for the Blazer. We need rear brake pads, and Hubby is going to do an oil change tomorrow, so we needed oil and a filter. I’m also wanting a seat cover to go in the back seat, so I went off to look at seat covers while Hubby grabbed the oil. Hubby headed up to the front counter to get the rest of the stuff he needed, and after a few minutes I joined him.

There were a total of three people in the store at this time including the two of us. One clerk was ringing up the other guy, so another guy came over to help us. He started ringing up the oil, and gave Hubby a total before Hubby could even get it out of his mouth that he needed more. Hubby said that wasn’t all, and the guy said, “You’ll have to pay for this first then because you didn’t tell me that. I can’t look up the parts until this order is finished.”

I told him to clear the order out then, and look up the parts. There was no reason for us to have to pay for our order in separate parts when he didn’t even ask if that would be all for us. He fumbled around for a couple minutes like he was clearing it out, then he said “Are you going to pay for this or not?” Hubby repeated what I had just said, and he looked at us like we were stupid before finally clearing the purchase to start over.

Hubby started telling him what we needed, a Fram oil filter for a 2002 Chevy Blazer 2WD (which does matter because the oil filters are different sizes), and a set of rear brake pads for the same vehicle. The guy just stood there staring off into space, so Hubby repeated himself. “I need an oil filter for a 2002 Chevrolet Blazer.”

The guy finally started looking it up, but he didn’t even choose the right vehicle. He chose a 2002 Chevy Tahoe. Hubby repeated that it was for a Blazer. When the guy finally found the right vehicle he said “what were you needing again?” Hubby repeated that he needed an oil filter.

From where I was standing I could see the screen as the guy was looking things up. When searching for the oil filter he chose the ignition section. I pointed out that the oil filter would be in the filters or tune up section. After standing there for another 5 minutes watching this guy squint at the screen so hard I thought for sure I should tell him to go pick up some prevera on his way home one thing became very obvious. Not only did this guy know nothing about car parts, but he apparently didn’t even know how to do his job.

When he finally found the oil filters he showed us the list of available ones. Hubby pointed out the Fram (priced at $3.89) that he wanted. The guy wrote down the part number, and then said “So you want the Bosch High Performance (priced at $13.49). Getting very frustrated Hubby said “Dude, I just told you I wanted the Fram Extra Guard. He scratched out the number he’d just written down and wrote down the correct part number before asking what else we needed.

Hubby repeated that we needed rear brake pads for the same vehicle. The guy started to look up the part then just stopped. The two other employees were standing off to the side having a conversation as there was no one else in the store, and the guy helping us decided it was more important to listen to their conversation than to help us finish our order. I called out “dude, are you going to look this up or not?” three times before the guy said “huh? Oh yeah.” At this point I looked at Hubby and said “Let’s just go. We’ll get them tomorrow at another location or Napa”, but Hubby didn’t want to wait. He wanted everything then so he can do all the work first thing in the morning before it gets hot out.

The guy finally pulled up the list of brake pads, and Hubby pointed out which ones we wanted, the Wearever Silver brake PADS. Hubby even wrote the part number down for the guy before he headed to the back to search for our parts. We stood there for another 10 minutes waiting for the guy to come back. When he did return he didn’t have the oil filter, and he was carrying a box that I knew was way too big to be our brake pads. When the guy sat the box down I told Hubby to check the part because it didn’t look right. Hubby opened the box to find the guy had pulled brake shoes, and the part number didn’t even match the one Hubby had written down.

All the time the two other employees were still standing off to the side, and neither one of them offered to help even when Hubby asked if there was anyone in the store who could actually get the right parts for us. The guy helping us stood there staring off into space again giving us a weird look. Hubby finally got as aggravated as I was and said “you know what we’ll just get them somewhere else tomorrow. This is ridiculous.”

As we were walking out the door the guy yelled out “Hey, do you still want the oil?” I yelled back “What do you think?”

We wasted about 20 minutes of our time because the clerk was too incompetent to do his job at all. I mean he was seriously completely clueless, and not once did anyone else offer to help him. How does a guy like that even keep his job? I would have filed a complaint against him tonight, but there wasn’t a manager in the store at the time as it was 30 minutes before closing time, and I guess the manager had already left. You better believe I’ll be calling the manager, and possibly the owner of the store tomorrow. How can you expect to sell anything if your employees can’t even do their jobs?

I will definitely never be shopping at that store again. We ended up going to Walmart to get the oil and filter, so Hubby can at least do the oil change in the morning, then I’ll go elsewhere for the brake pads when Autozone or Napa opens. It’s worth it to me to pay their higher prices this time so I won’t have to deal with the incompetent employees at Advance Auto again!

2 Replies to “Why I Will Never Shop At Advance Auto In Central, SC Again”

  1. We normally shop at Advance Auto for two reasons, the cheaper prices, and we’ve found Autozone and Napa (the only other 2 options in our area) hardly ever have the part we need in stock. I’m done with Advance, though.

    A couple years ago Hubby went to the other location near us at 8:20pm, and they’d already locked the doors. The stores hours are until 9pm. When Hubby got home steaming mad he called the store, and the manager answered. He asked why the store was closed, and the manager said it wasn’t. Hubby told him it was in fact closed, the doors were locked, and he beat on the door while an employee just stood there looking at him. The manager hung up on him! We stopped shopping at that location because of that.

  2. OMG, that whole chain is awful! Years ago, Mike went into the one in Medford, MA, and there was a whole hassle over wiper blades. He then went to AutoZone, a much better place, they seem to know more what they are doing there.

    My guess is that Advance Auto, as a company, treats employees like crap, and therefore has to scrape the bottom of the barrel to find anyone to work there. Got a pulse? You’re hired.

    The AutoZone near us is good. Sometimes it really is worth paying a few extra bucks, to get people who know what the hell they are doing.

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