My horrible inland boat center (perris, ca) experience
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My horrible inland boat center (perris, ca) experience

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    Default My horrible inland boat center (perris, ca) experience

    The following is a public service announcement:

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    Chapter 1: What's that smell?

    We bought a 2008 MB Sports F23 Tomcat from Inland Boat Center in Perris, California in July ’12. It had 25 hours on it. We were told the boat had received a complete mechanical inspection. That wasn’t the case. The very first time we took it to Havasu we had trouble. We jumped in the boat and headed up river. By the time we hit the sand bar, we could smell and see smoke coming from under the dash. A quick inspection revealed that the stereo was hooked up wrong and was backfeeding on itself. I don’t know anything about stereos and very little about boat wiring and I found this problem quickly. How did Inland miss this during their full inspection?

    More to come… Chapter 2: Holy crap, it won’t stop!
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    Default OUR HORRIBLE INLAND BOAT CENTER (perris, ca) EXPERIENCE, Chapter 2

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    Chapter 2: Holy crap, it won’t stop!

    After figuring out the smoke problem from the stereo, we continued to use the boat, cautiously, the rest of the first weekend. Two weeks later we were back at Havasu for some more fun. Our problems started immediately. The boat’s forward motion seemed to have a mind of its own. It would go sometimes, or it wouldn’t. Never having a boat with Perfect Pass before, I thought maybe I was doing something wrong – after all, the boat had a full mechanical inspection, right.

    After a couple hours wakeboarding and surfing, we went to find a cove to relax. It was hardly relaxing. When we got to the cove and approached shore, I throttled back to idle and dropped it into neutral to gently glide in. It barreled in without stopping. No amount of neutral or reverse was going to stop it. A few minutes later we headed to the dock to trailer the wounded beast. As we approached the dock I again went for neutral. No luck. No reverse either. In fact, when I hit reverse with some gusto to try to get her to stop, she lunged forward, narrowly missing the dock and narrowly missing injuring my passengers who were trying to catch it.

    Turns out an oil line on the transmission had cracked and leaked out most of the tranny fluid and the clutches burnt out. But how could that happen? Surely Inland’s mechanic would catch a leaking oil line during its full mechanical inspection, right?

    To their credit, Inland replaced the transmission at no cost. But it took over three weeks. And it should have never happened in the first place. Full mechanical inspection.

    More to come… Chapter 3: Seriously??? Now what?
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    Default OUR HORRIBLE INLAND BOAT CENTER (perris, ca) EXPERIENCE, Chapter 3

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    Chapter 3: Seriously??? Now what?

    We finally got the boat back, this time with a brand new transmission. Everything should be good, right? Wrong. We got one good weekend out of it. The second time we had it out something else in the drive train failed. It started making a horrible clacking noise at low speed; it sounded like the whole engine/transmission was coming apart. So here we go again, back to the shop.

    Turns out the coupler between the engine and the transmission failed. It probably should have been replaced when the transmission was replaced, but wasn’t. So now we’re without our boat again. And it’s September in Southern California – PRIME Lake Havasu season.

    Our boat wasn’t ready to be picked up until December. Yes, you read that correctly, three MONTHS. So much for the fall boating season. But it’s nice to know they had performed a full mechanical inspection before I bought the boat, right?

    More to come… Chapter 4: I’m no astronaut, but I know where Uranus is.
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    Default OUR HORRIBLE INLAND BOAT CENTER (perris, ca) EXPERIENCE, Chapter 4

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    Chapter 4: I’m no astronaut, but I know where Uranus is

    [I need to backtrack a bit] It’s now sometime in November and I haven’t heard a word from Inland Boat Center regarding the status of my boat (they were terrible about keeping me informed). So I called to inquire. The new coupler had been installed already. Now they were fixing a new problem. Their “mechanic” heard a noise in the motor while testing it. One of the cylinders was bad. They had to tear the motor apart and send the head out to be machined. I think a new valve or valves were installed.

    This is ridiculous now. We’ve put less than 30 hours on the boat at this point. And now it’s got a bad cylinder/head/valve? Why didn’t they catch that during their full mechanical inspection? Why was it just discovered NOW, after thee months and two visits to their shop?

    Again, to their credit, they fixed it at no cost to me. But by this time that’s not the point.

    Come on, Inland Boat Center (Riverside, CA), that thing up in the sky is Uranus. The other thing is just a hole in the ground. Full mechanical inspection Uranus.

    More to come… Chapter 5: Please… STOP THE INSANITY!
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    Chapter 1: YOU DIDNT HAVE THE BOAT INSPECTED YOURSELF


    why would you trust ANYTHING some shop/broker/dealership has to say? They're not there to be your friend, they're there to sell stuff and make money. You shouldve gone on a trial to make sure the boat runs and if you are not mechanically inclined arranged to have the boat inspected by someone you TRUST. This is the whole reason marine surveyors exist, etc. A neutral 3rd party that could care less if you buy the boat or not. Would you buy a car without a test drive in it? No. Airplane without flying it? No. Their mechanical inspection was probably as follows: "does anything leak? nope! does it sink? nope! runs on the trailer, its good!"

    I hope things get better for you, and it sucks that all this has happened to you. Boating is supposed to be fun.
    Last edited by ka0tyk; 05-31-2013 at 03:46 PM.
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    Senior Member PokerRun388's Avatar
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    Sounds to me like Inland stepped up and helped you out?

    Did you lake test the boat at Elsinore and have it checked out by a mechanic before you bought it?
    Last edited by PokerRun388; 06-01-2013 at 07:17 AM.
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    I hope nothin else goes wrong as I don think they'll be stepping up anymore.
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    Sounds to me like Inland Boat Center has really stepped up. You should have bought a new boat if you wanted a new boat. A complete inspection doesn't mean the boat is like new. You should be praising Inland Boats, instead you decided it would be better to bitch. Inland had no obligation to take care of these things for you. They did it to make you a happy customer in return for you being able to tell people how they stepped up. Sounds like they didn't get their money's worth out of the deal and should no longer help you at all.
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    Default OUR HORRIBLE INLAND BOAT CENTER (perris, ca) EXPERIENCE, Chapter 5

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    Chapter 5: Please… STOP THE INSANITY!

    So we finally get the call, in December, that the boat repairs are complete and we can pick it up. That’s great, but we’re over it. WAY over it. We bought the boat to enjoy, to have fun on. It’s been nothing but trouble since the day we got it. Four months in the shop during the five months we’ve owned it. One trouble-free trip.

    Sorry, not what we signed up for. Not what I’m paying a huge payment for. Not what I deem acceptable.

    So we asked Inland Boat Center to buy the boat back under California’s Song-Beverly Consumer Protection Act. They refused. Even with the potential threat of a lawsuit they refused. And we’re not lawsuit people, my wife and I.

    We begged and pleaded, please just take this floating Albatross back. We don’t want it anymore. We’re not enjoying it anymore. And, legally, you’re possibly bound to. Nope. Wouldn’t hear of it. So we investigated legal avenues. Problem was, we were going to have to throw more good money after bad to pursue a lawsuit that, because of the way the law is written, we may or may not win. It wasn’t a good investment (maybe not as bad as this boat, but still not good). So we tried a different approach.

    We asked Inland Boat Center (Perris, CA) to provide three simple, reasonable accommodations:

    1. A three-year, tip-to-tail full-coverage aftermarket warranty
    2. Three years of on-water towing coverage ($183)
    3. Repayment of 4 loan payments we made while they had the boat in service

    Their counteroffer: A two-year drive train aftermarket warranty and nothing else.

    Nice, but not enough. We hadn’t used the boat enough to shake out any bugs. Maybe something else was wrong that they hadn’t caught on their full mechanical inspection. I’ve already invested enough in this. I don’t want to get stuck with more.

    So, no deal.

    More to come… Chapter 6: We surrender
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    Thanks for the feedback. And they didn't really step up. They fulfilled their contractual obligation under the law. They sold the boat with a 30-day full warranty. The mechanical failures occurred within those 30 days (as they get extended each time the vehicle is in the shop for the duration of the repairs, per the law). And I have repeatedly stated that they performed the repairs at no cost. Keep reading, however, as the story is not over.

    And, for everyone reading and/or asking, we did take the boat for an initial lake test at Elsinore. And it ran fine for someone who is, at best, an amateur garage mechanic. So we believed them that the boat was mechanically sound. After all, that's why you buy a boat from a dealer and not a Craigslist ad. Buyer beware on Craigslist. The dealer is supposed to perform their due diligence, especially when they tell you they did.

    And I'm not bitching, I'm sharing my story. This is the connected age. This is how it works in 2013.


    Quote Originally Posted by Johnny West View Post
    Sounds to me like Inland Boat Center has really stepped up. You should have bought a new boat if you wanted a new boat. A complete inspection doesn't mean the boat is like new. You should be praising Inland Boats, instead you decided it would be better to bitch. Inland had no obligation to take care of these things for you. They did it to make you a happy customer in return for you being able to tell people how they stepped up. Sounds like they didn't get their money's worth out of the deal and should no longer help you at all.
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    If you put 30 hours on the boat in the short time you had it, I'm surprised they fixed the engine for free. You've already stated that you continued to use the boat with faulty wiring. You ran it into the beach at speed (due to the transmission) and then drove it again and did who knows what to it. You said you tried to throw it into reverse to slow it down and this is just what you have posted. And while you keep talking about how they did a "full inspection" and didn't find anything, you never once mention any owner/operator inspection of the drive line and engine after 30 hours of operation. It's not a car. You don't just drive it and park it in the garage and expect everything to be perfect. If the oil line was leaking, how come you didn't notice it when you did your after use inspection or the before use inspection? Did you do any inspections or maintenance on the boat or did you expect it to remain in perfect condition without you doing anything with it?

    While I'm not a legal expert, it sure sounds like you bought a boat you aren't sure how to use and have been abusing it. That the dealership has taken care of it is nothing short of amazing. To then ask for even more from them is pretty telling. Good luck with your endeavors.
    So many projects, so little time
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    There's no way in hell the dealership I worked at would have been that accommodating. Especially on the cylinder head issue. 30hrs is a lot of hours for SoCal boaters. You would've known there was a cylinder issue on the test drive.
    I think if it were me I'd cut my loses and sell it with the 2yr warranty offered.
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    BLOWN GAS FLAT TO THE RAMP

    REST IN PEACE MY FRIEND
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    Two years powertrain on a used boat? You should take that and run. I'm curious, is this your first boat? The reason I ask is over the past 10 years or so I've seen a changing of the landscape. A lot of newer boaters seem to transfer their terra firma thinking to the waterways and boating in general. Boats aren't cars and boat dealers aren't car dealerships. The unknowns in a boat are numerous and different with each custom almost one off build. If you think for one second the trouble free weekend is the norm and everything should go without incident, sell the boat now and look into something more sublime. Every boating weekend has it's own adventures either with you or the guy you're parked next to on the beach, boat ramp or on the I-40. So many people seem to forget they have a duty to render aid to boaters in distress or even just stressed. Learn to incorporate those incidents into your weekend and way of thinking to really appreciate the boating lifestyle. Anyway, I hope things work out to your satisfaction. Thanks for highlighting a great dealership that knows the value of after the sale service. Inland boats sounds like a place I'd like to do business with, confidently.
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    Quote Originally Posted by kiethco View Post
    Two years powertrain on a used boat? You should take that and run. I'm curious, is this your first boat? The reason I ask is over the past 10 years or so I've seen a changing of the landscape. A lot of newer boaters seem to transfer their terra firma thinking to the waterways and boating in general. Boats aren't cars and boat dealers aren't car dealerships. The unknowns in a boat are numerous and different with each custom almost one off build. If you think for one second the trouble free weekend is the norm and everything should go without incident, sell the boat now and look into something more sublime. Every boating weekend has it's own adventures either with you or the guy you're parked next to on the beach, boat ramp or on the I-40. So many people seem to forget they have a duty to render aid to boaters in distress or even just stressed. Learn to incorporate those incidents into your weekend and way of thinking to really appreciate the boating lifestyle. Anyway, I hope things work out to your satisfaction. Thanks for highlighting a great dealership that knows the value of after the sale service. Inland boats sounds like a place I'd like to do business with, confidently.
    Great post
    Quote Originally Posted by Jetboatguru View Post
    I am not here to get anything started
    Quote Originally Posted by Billy-B View Post
    I'm not here to start anything either
    Quote Originally Posted by riverratmike
    Those guys in that hot rod boat have NO RESPECT for people that are trying to sleep





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