While vacationing in Florida last year, my vehicle suddenly stopped working. I called AAA and the tow truck driver ‘recommended’ a nearby local auto repair shop. To make a long story short, the Fl. shop replaced my Computer (PCM) and sent me on my way. The check engine light was still on but the vehicle got me back home to Maryland. About 10 months later I needed to get the vehicle emissions tested and took it to my local auto repair shop to get the check engine light resolved. The Md shop needed to replace the PCM and tried to contact the Fl. shop about the warranty of the existing PCM but got no answer. They (Md) replaced the PCM so my vehicle could pass emissions. I have 2 questions:
1.After seeing what the Md shop charged me (~$280) for the new PCM; I believe the Fl. Shop overcharged me for the same part ($900, part # 56040322AC). The Fl. Shop said that the part was new and came directly from the dealership. I looked online and the dealership price was $149.95 (ref http://www.dodgeautocomputers.net/rr-catalog-ecu/DODGE-RAM%202500%20VAN-2002-ECM-ECU-PCM-rnr.htm). Is this kind of markup common? Did the Fl. Shop take advantage of my desperate situation (family stranded in Fl)?
2.The Fl. Shop insisted that I needed to send the old PCM part to him for replacement. I did not see the sense in this; I would have been without my vehicle for ~2 weeks waiting for him to replace the PCM. Is it common for shops to handle part warranty issues themselves? Especially when it concerns an out of state return? I was under the impression that the Md. shop would be able to ‘work’ with the existing warranty.
(I have copies of all receipts and correspondences)