Beware: Advance Auto Parts/ATK Spartan - Page 3 -
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post #31 of 47 Old 01-24-2011, 11:24 AM
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1991 YJ Wrangler 
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Location: maryland
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Unfortunately, I feel your pain. I to USED to shop at absolute automotive peril aka advanced auto parts. After replacing a clutch master 3 times, then pulling the tranny and doing a whole clutch cause the slave blew. The master was leaking AGAIN. So I replaced it again. A week later the slave blew out. All this was within a month. I called the store and spoke with a very good employee of theirs I had gotten to know and told him it was all coming back, including the latest master cylinder because it was only a matter of time. He agreed and said it would be no problem. A couple days later I get it all back apart and go to the store with all parts and recites in hand. The "manager" gave me one hell of a hard time telling me I put it in wrong or something. After a few choice words and informing him a employee had already ok'ed it he put his tail between his legs and returned my money and made the comment that he and his employee would have a talk about company policy. Unfortunately for him I called corporate and informed them of the ordeal and of how great their other employee is. All in all the manager got fired and the employee got a raise... to manager. I'm glad everything worked out for the kid but it turned me off from ever returning. Ide rather drive 20 mins to another store than go to advanced which is a stones throw from my house.

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post #32 of 47 Old 01-24-2011, 12:32 PM
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im glad that he called. i hope you get the money back that you deserve.

-1987 YJ

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post #33 of 47 Old 01-24-2011, 12:45 PM
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1999 TJ Wrangler 
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I was going to get an ATK until I started poking around on Jeepspeed's forum. ATK is their main sponsor. I posted on there about ATK engines quality and recieved 3 pm's from JeepSpeed racers/owners telling me to stay the **** away from ATK. They cant publicly say anything against them on the site as they are a huge sponsor, but had had horrible experiences with them. One being a 1700 class guy bought the supposed ATK performance JS specific engine and blew the top end up within a month. Opened it up and they had reused half the stock components (instead of replacing) where it had been advertised that the top end was redone using all new performance components.

Im now considering getting one shipped from Portland Engine rebuilders. If you read Bricktop's build thread, he got a stroker built by them and its done awesome. I called them and spoke with someone(his name escapes me now) for about half an hour about the ins and outs of the rebuild. I have talked to several local shops, but his knowledge and and attitude has convinced me to freight one across the country when I replace mine. Even with coast to coast freight, a 4.0 from them is still cheaper (and a ton better) than an ATK plus freight.

**** Advance. They always give me crap in there because Im young. Dont try and sell me some 400$ performance distributor when all I ask for is a new cap and rotor.

And if the Jeepspeed guys are getting screwed by ATK, Im sure they treat their regular customers just as bad.
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post #34 of 47 Old 01-24-2011, 12:52 PM
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Note to self: Never buy an engine from advanced nor autozone.

Sorry bought your issues that really sucks the big one!

Sadface :(
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post #35 of 47 Old 01-24-2011, 01:02 PM
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Glad to hear things are moving along. I had a similar issue with a built shortblock I purchased. Ended up fighting with them for 6 months before I got it resolved. Sounds like you did better than me.
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post #36 of 47 Old 01-26-2011, 09:43 PM
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post #37 of 47 Old 01-27-2011, 04:41 AM
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Originally Posted by roklok View Post
Don't ever buy a radiator at Advanced Auto Parts. I work there part time as a parts delivery guy, and we have nothing but problems with our radiators.
I'd disagree (I work for a subsidiary of AA - API). I bought a radiator from 1-800-Radiator for my Durango. Spacing was bad on the mounts to the tune that my fan wore a perfect circle in the middle of the rad until it leaked. So we bought out one from Advance - no problems since.

I think radiators in general can be troublesome. Think about it, it's all 1-800 does, and theirs was wrong.

88 YJ, 4.2L, AX-15, NP231 w/ SYE, 3.5" RC lift, 1" booms
Cut down XJ shaft in rear
Ford 8.8 LS & Spartan Locked
Big Daddy Off Road rock sliders
35x12.5 BFG A/T KOs, XRC-8000

I love installing new stuff.
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post #38 of 47 Old 01-27-2011, 06:07 AM
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1991 YJ Wrangler 
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I work part-time at NAPA as a parts delivery guy and bought a radiator from 1-800-Radiator and have not had any problems with it. Just shows that you can get bad radiators from anyone.

USAF 1968-1972
NRA Life
2004 WJ
1998 ZJ
1991 YJ
1973 Dodge Dart Sport
1980 Honda CB900c
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post #39 of 47 Old 01-27-2011, 07:49 AM
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If your check is in the store on Friday, and all of Robert's promises have been met, make sure to send him an e-mail thanking him for his effort. Be sure to cc anyone above him.
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post #40 of 47 Old 01-31-2011, 06:00 AM Thread Starter
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The check was there on Friday as promised so this is the last post. As long as this engine holds up for the warranty period that is...
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post #41 of 47 Old 01-31-2011, 06:35 AM
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Remember to put in a good word for Robert. I was really surprised to hear people talking about Advanced negatively. Here they are one of the better parts stores. I guess you are only as good as the employees that you are working with. Those pictures are unbeleivable. The fact that it was still running says a lot about the design on the 2.5 and 4.0L engines!
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post #42 of 47 Old 05-18-2011, 04:08 AM
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Originally Posted by katautophile View Post
You must always be careful of purchasing online. You can never tell when you will be ripped off or it could be just a difficulty at sending the item or the money. Whatever car parts there are, in your case it is an engine, we should always be mindful.
The engine was bought locally. I dont know where your seeing that it was bought online.

1998 ZJ 5.2 Auto

1989 Wrangler Black Bone Stock 2.5l 5spd
/l , [____],
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post #43 of 47 Old 05-18-2011, 07:10 AM
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Originally Posted by Mark05059 View Post
The engine was bought locally. I dont know where your seeing that it was bought online.
The way I see it, looks like a bot [or a person paid to post links] that posted a link to a benz parts site which I'd say qualifies as a fail.
I google'd the bot username and came up with a bunch of other posts from other car sites today.
"That's some good price dropping. Interesting. Just wondering if they have more car parts available and like an online catalog where I can see the list of prices and the items' status as well."
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post #44 of 47 Old 07-12-2012, 12:38 AM
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i was about to buy an engine and someone told me to read this post first.. interestingly enough, this is my first post as I'm a total newbie.. but I'm definitely glad I read through your forum. I feel for you friend.
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post #45 of 47 Old 07-12-2012, 04:08 AM
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Since this old post has been resurrected, and now I DO work for advance, I've had some first hand experience. For the past 6 months or so I've been the CPP at 2 stores. Here's what I've seen.

1. Yes, I'd say in general stay away from the Spartan engines. I've seen an engine purchased w/o a hole for the dipstick, the replacement had a cracked head, and the 3rd was finally correct.
2. If used is an option - tell the salesperson to check ADVANCE SALVAGE. It's right on the sales screen. Takes some time to verify availability, but if done THE CORRECT WAY, so does any engine purchase.
3. If the store has commercial delivery (or if you have retail guys up front who actually WANT to sell and engine) have them call RMP (I forget the number). Typically theirs are cheaper than Advance listed engines. Also the warranty is 3yr, 100k miles vs. the 3yr, 75k miles for AAP engines.

Now, since we're on the topic of warranty keep this in mind. As of a couple months ago, AAP no longer provides ANY labor warranty claims for DIY customers. Engine still covered, and you should be made to sign a sheet with the warranty details (just saying you have read them and understand).

Again - if used is OK, Salvage is your best bet. Yesterday I priced up a Civic 1.6L Vtec engine. Sales screen $3k, salvage $1300 w/ 74k miles. And RMP had no availability anywhere in the country. Now if I can just get the guy to buy the friggin thing....

88 YJ, 4.2L, AX-15, NP231 w/ SYE, 3.5" RC lift, 1" booms
Cut down XJ shaft in rear
Ford 8.8 LS & Spartan Locked
Big Daddy Off Road rock sliders
35x12.5 BFG A/T KOs, XRC-8000

I love installing new stuff.
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