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What's the dumbest thing you've heard at a parts store?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Ratticis, Apr 30, 2011.

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  1. I think you're on to something. There was a time when parts people made a decent wage between base and commision. From what I understand very few places pay commision and the base pay is little more than minimum wage. I call this the Walmartizing of sales and it has not just affected autoparts just try and go buy some higher end of the midrange audio equipment that the big box electronics retailers sell and get answers from any of the sales people and it's obvious they know nothing about what they're selling. This is not the sales persons fault I blame the retailer for not properly training their sales staff. Training costs money. But we all want that BlueRay player for $99.99. The big retailers don't care anymore because they don't have to. They're only interested in the bottom line and that is their sole duty to share holders to maximize profit.
  2. This is a fun thread, right? :D

    I have been in the parts buis 30+ years and can tell you everyday I learn something about parts and human nature, both from the customers and my coworkers, young to old. Life is full of adventure and challenges and how we get thru them defines us, from the counterperson who doesn't care about your special needs to the who goes above and beyond to find your wishes and from the customer who's patience level is that of a special ed child to the customer who has the patience of Mother Teresa. I again observe the virtue of people as they are challenged by the simple things to the complex, bottom line; just smile a little more when you are challenged by these " complicated" things in life, remember, you have your life and freedom to be thankful for......

    First thing we teach our countermen: 3 things you are to have no oppinion on during your working hours, as they all are wonderful in moderation,
    Religion, Politics, and Motor Oil!! :D
  3. enloe
    Joined: May 10, 2006
    Posts: 8,600

    from east , tn.

    has that got 2 or 4 doors
  4. I've been up to Tim's NAPA store (oldguard) on several occasions. I'd have to say that if Tim were not 35 miles away from me, I'd be a regular customer there! He and his counter guys are pretty damn smart about parts, and that is far too rare these days.

    Among the stores closer to me, the NAPA and O'Reillys have it together, as well. Always professional and know how to actually use a BOOK if it's necessary.

    Locally, the AutoZoned and CarQuestion, though, just plain suck. I don't believe they know how to use a parts book. Their folks can't tell a camshaft from a halfshaft! They do have a fine selection of motor oil, though. And I never, ever bother to stop at either one. Several of you mention TRAINING...I'm sure that does not occur at AZ or CQ.
  5. torchmen49
    Joined: Mar 5, 2005
    Posts: 291


    I was standing in line at the Parts store waiting my turn, the guy in front of me wants an intake set for a '68 302 Ford. Parts guys askes, "Is it a 2V or a 4V engine?" .....customer says "What does that mean?"....... Parts guy says......... " It either has 4 valves per cylinder or 2" :eek:
  6. Mac_55
    Joined: Mar 10, 2008
    Posts: 688


    Buddys wife walked into the local Oreillys the other day , Said " I need a brake light for 2010 dodge " cant remember the exact model . Anyways gal behind the counter replied with " front or rear" lol
  7. flamingokid
    Joined: Jan 5, 2005
    Posts: 2,200


    This is why I keep things simple.I used to have a Cord 810 and found out early on that you don't get parts at the parts store,even 25 years ago.Finally sold it,headache gone.
    Joined: Apr 27, 2009
    Posts: 293


    any question from a "parts girl".
  9. billsill45
    Joined: Jul 15, 2009
    Posts: 784

    from SoCal

    While it's great fun pointing out the stupidity of the guy on the other side of the parts counter, I have to put in a kind word for the O'Reilly people in my town. Friday, I needed a set of spark plugs for my OT project ... Autolite AP26's but I also had the Champion and AC numbers handy. Without playing the 20 questions game, the O'Reilly guy checked his computer stock and also checked the shelf. He had 2 of the Autolites but no AC's or Champions. He suggested that another O'Reilly's several miles away might have them and offered to call and check. He made the call, plugs were in stock, and he told me that the plugs would be at the counter at the other store. Sure enough, the lady working the counter was holding the plugs for me and I was back in my truck, headed for home in about 3 minutes.

    A small thing, but on other visits to this store I have seen the O'Reilly's people make similar efforts to try to help their customers.

    Old saying: "When I do right, no one remembers. When I do wrong, no one forgets".
  10. usmc50lx
    Joined: Oct 3, 2006
    Posts: 711

    from St.Louis

    Try working at a street rod part place! Apparently I'm supposed to know what trunk rubber and door rubber fits a '48 chevy with a 4" inch chop and a 2" section, have parts in stock for a 1988 Cap-rice, and know what headers fit a 1955 chevy truck with a camaro clip a BBC and a Mustang II rack on homeade brackets but clear everything and give good ground clearance!LOL its a daily headache but I still love it cause I'm doing what I love! There is some customers that I will go out of my way too help and then there are those that are beyond help! So like was stated before its not an easy task on the other side of the counter at all.....just be prepared and know what you want/need be an educated consumer...and if the parts guy still isn't willing or able to help shame on him or shame on his company for the lack of training!
  11. actually that can make a difference! try getting a new electric fuel pump for a 1998 chevy blazer...two and four doors have different pumps and part numbers and you need to know that to get the correct one
  12. Painfulbanter
    Joined: Jun 11, 2011
    Posts: 55


    Someone was looking for a new 710 cap because theirs broke the counter guy searched but couldn't find anything. The woman went to her car and brought in the cap ant the counter guy spun it around and said it says (OIL) not 710
  13. railroad
    Joined: Feb 3, 2010
    Posts: 242


    Ask a kid for a foot and a half of 3/8's fuel hose. He cut me 16 inches.
  14. kevo
    Joined: Feb 5, 2009
    Posts: 174

    from Keller, TX

    I've had to do this SEVERAL times with 1962 cadillac... I'm using a York 210 A/C compressor for the air suspension, and they always ask the year/make/model and I tell them "it's going to say it's the wrong part, but I know the part #, and know what I want" and they go through the whole spiel about how they have to make sure it'll fit and such... I know they have to cover their ass for warranty reasons, or think they're helping me in some way, but it's annoying as hell sometimes
  15. little skeet
    Joined: Jan 27, 2008
    Posts: 302

    little skeet
    from huston

    I managed a stockroom with over 16,000 differnet parts in it. When we bought a new computer program...I entered all of the items and descriptions into the computer base...did not want a computer guy do it.
    They know nothing about parts. It sure saved a lot of time, trouble, and of course money!
  16. zman
    Joined: Apr 2, 2001
    Posts: 16,555

    from Garner, NC

    depends on the computer guy, there are more than a few here that know parts. :D
  17. el shad
    Joined: Apr 16, 2008
    Posts: 622

    el shad

    BS! Everyone tells this joke, but I have never met a person whom actually witnessed it.
  18. 53sled
    Joined: Jul 5, 2005
    Posts: 5,819

    from KCMO

    actually, it does matter. It can matter alot. How was the parts guy supposed to know if you have a 92 4wd or a 72 el camino?

    your ass is showing.
  19. FoxSpeed
    Joined: May 19, 2009
    Posts: 385

    from NorCal

    I asked where the files were kept, the counter person said in the back. He asked me if I wanted a flat bastard , I told him no. I wanted a round muthafuker.
  20. metalshapes
    Joined: Nov 18, 2002
    Posts: 10,760

    Tech Editor

    Most of these parts places sell that hose by the foot.

    So if you ask for a foot and a half, you'll pay for 2 Ft.

    They do not volunteer this information, but ask them and they'll tell you.
  21. And with what my part of the parts know world will tell me AFTER I confirm my best known answer after looking in a book with pictures, vehicle specs, or known by some eat up motorhead facts, to either grab the keyboard and give a price and date, or have parts in hand if correct.
    Computer guys are supposed to be the guys that fix the damn computer shit. They are supposed to know computers, I'm supposed to know parts and how to deal with customers in need.
    Semi truck parts are way easier than dealing with most car parts today. Neither are easy.
  22. damagedduck
    Joined: Jun 16, 2011
    Posts: 2,342

    from Greeley Co

    no gripes here--where i live the local Orielley started a new thing a couple years, ago they started hiring people who are friendly,and are very capable of working on computers & cars/trucks,it caused a chain reaction around town-autozone,advance,carquest all follwed their lead,but poor napa hasn't,what real freaken cool is if they don't have what you need, they'll call the competition to see if they have it or give you the option of odering it,
    like my O.I.T guy says 'garbage in garbage out'.......i know i'm not gonna walk in there & find ball joints for my 49 hudson but i know i can get parts for my wifes jeep,
  23. Hot Rod Elvis
    Joined: Jan 24, 2011
    Posts: 606

    Hot Rod Elvis

    I got another one for ya' I was helping a buddy find a taillight lense for his O/T 2005 Gmc truck. Before we got one off of ebay for less than half what the dealer wanted....we called four dealers to get prices. On three dealers, he asked if they had a tailight for that truck. If they said yes, they told him the price (around $150:eek:) but on the last one....when he asked again if they had his lense, my friend repeated "Why, it doesn't matter if it's a 4wd or 2wd" and he started laughing. He always has his phone speaker up so I could kinda hear what the parts guy was saying. Then the guy said "Sir, I need to know if it's a 4wd or 2wd before I can go and find the part"

    Now I'm pretty sure that there isn't a special light that goes on a four-wheel drive rather than a 2wd:rolleyes:
  24. :rolleyes:
  25. The Hop Walla
    Joined: Aug 19, 2007
    Posts: 427

    The Hop Walla
    from Dallas

    Yah. I've got a '65 Harley and it really pisses me off that I can't get parts for it at a damned Harley dealership.

  26. hotrod69
    Joined: Dec 11, 2007
    Posts: 50

    from warren tx

    on a sunday afternoon, i broke a sparkplug. at the parts store i ask for a sparkplug for a 409 chevy. i was told chevy did not make a 409. i whent to another store.
  27. salf100
    Joined: Oct 13, 2009
    Posts: 431


    I asked an AutoZone guy if he could recommend a place to have my steering box rebuilt.....he said "I've got a great guy that can do!" I said ok whats his contact info? He says, "Oh, I cant give you that info!" Then he just walks off!
  28. THE_DUDE
    Joined: Aug 22, 2009
    Posts: 2,601


  29. CruiserUser
    Joined: Jan 12, 2011
    Posts: 32


    "I bought the V6 version instead because it handles better"

    Said by one of the guys that works at the local autozone every time he came out and looked at my parts runner ('01 Dakota R/T). Then about a year later he did a 5.9 conversion just like the R/T, funny how that works.
  30. blue 49
    Joined: Dec 24, 2006
    Posts: 1,303

    blue 49
    from Iowa

    I stopped at a Car Quest today to buy a pair of valve cover gaskets for my small block Chevy. They didn't stock them. Not the counter guys fault, he couldn't believe they didn't have them. The most common engine in the world and they dom't stock valve cover gaskets.
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