FAQ – Frequently Asked Questions
What is the difference between Lone Star Bavarian and the dealership?
There are many differences but the most important, is that at Lone Star Bavarian, you are never more than one person away from the owner. In many cases you will be conducting business with me the owner directly. Regardless he is always available. In the beginning it was just him so he could be sure that the level of service was what he wanted for the company to provide, was being provided. As the company has grown and he can not fulfill all of the jobs needed we have to hired more staff to fill necessary positions that he can no longer fill. All of Lone Star Bavarian’s staff have been chosen with you the client/customer in mind. Additionally they all answer directly to the owner as there is no middle management; there is no management, supervisors or miscellaneous other staff in between. This is important because the owner wants all his customers/clients to be happy with the level of service they receive. It is only by eliminating this middle management that the owner can stay in constant contact with his staff and employees, and he is able to do that to ensure the highest level of service. It is important to know that we really do care if you return for future service. Our viability as an independent depends on our clients happiness.
What are the benefits of coming to Lone Star Bavarian VS. the Dealer?
Once again there are many, so I will focus on the most important. Most Dealerships are designed to sell expensive automobiles. To do that they have to have a certain level of service, plenty of space, property and interior accoutrements. This is added to the overhead needed to operate that business. This overhead is paid for by the client and, charged as an hourly rate and parts pricing. One of the single biggest fixed expenses a dealership has is its location and property. While I think you will agree that the local BMW and Mercedes Dealerships are very nice, centrally located and aesthetically pleasing, it is the customer who pay for these amenities. With Lone Star Bavarian, you get a centrally located facility that is also astehically pleasing, but we are and are more affordable than the dealership.
Do you use OE(Original Equipment) parts?
We use the best parts available for each repair. Like all manufacturers the BMW, Mercedes and Mini spec parts are based on the contracts they have with their suppliers. These parts are specifically based on the vendors ability to provide the proper quantities, specifications and price in the manufacturing and in the service process as required, while still in the warranty and all service included(BMW and Mini) period. In many cases that particular part may not be the “best part” based on real world conditions. Since we are not under any vehicle manufacturer umbrella and we are not bound by these manufacturer-to-dealer vendor contracts, we can provide you the best parts. This is a benefit our clients because we purchase based on quality only and price does not factor in to our choice. Replacing a failed part very frustrating, therefore, when your vehicle is serviced at Lone Star Bavarian, we want to replace parts with the best parts available.
What sort of warranty do you have on parts and labor?
We warranty all work that we perform, which includes all parts and labor! All warranties are concurrent with the manufacturer warranties. All manufacturer warranties are a minimum of 12 months. So, essentially all parts and labor are warrantied for 12 months at a minimum. There are some manufacturer/dealer and aftermarket supplied parts that have 24 month warranty and we will discus this with you when these instances are applicable. There is even a 48 month warranty on all Meyle HD suspension parts.
Will you install parts I purchased elsewhere?
We are not able to warranty parts that we do not purchase, therefore we do not allow our customers to bring in their own parts for repairs. We do occasionally make exceptions to this rule, but only on performance parts from vendors, which we do not do business with. In those cases, we will warranty the installation only, but in the case that there are failures because of the part itself we won’t warranty labor in that instance. The client/customer will be responsible for all labor charges involved in replacing the part that failed prematurely.
Do you have dealer level diagnostics and tools?
Modern automotive service has become very specialized because of the complexity of the vehicles that each manufacturer builds. The equipment required to properly diagnose and service is very expensive. From the beginning we wanted to be the best we could be. It is that line of thinking that lead us to specialize so that we could afford the right equipment we needed to accomplish that goal. Lone Star Bavarian has dealer level diagnostic equipment (which includes programming and coding) on all of the lines we service. It is an extensive financial commitment that must be made, but without dealer level tools we truly would not be able to call ourselves specialist.
See http://www.autologic-diagnostics.com/ for more information on just one of the diagnostic tools we have available to the techsin our service facility.
What sort of qualifications do your technicians have to work on the models you specialize in?
All of our techs have previous dealership experience so their foundation of knowledge and experience started with factory training. We employ two dealer Master Techs, which means they were senior technicians when they were employed by the dealership. For continuing education we utilize several different organizations that specialize in training independent specializing techs. These classes are all taught by ex-dealer/manufacturer training and provide dealer or manufacturer level training to the independents like ourselves. We also dedicate a portion of our budget annually, not only to this training but also to peripherals, manufacturer websites, parts programs, professional forums and message boards to stay on top the latest bulletins and repair information available.
Additionally we have an ASE Mastertech on staff which is a real bonus. This tech is a 40 year veteran of this industry and has made a real effort to stay abreast of service and repair across a broader knowledge base of the whole automobile industry. This continuing achievement shows his dedication to being the best this industry has to offer.
See www.ase.com for more information on what this means on our techician’s ASE Mastertech status.
I see that you are a BIMRS member. What is BIMRS and what other groups are you affiliated with that I should know about.
We are a member of BIMRS, previously known as Independent Association of BMW Service Professionals or IABMWSP, which is a group of International shops that are commited to the industry to be the best of the best in their chosen field of service. As a member we not only have the knowledge of our exceptional staff to pool knowledge from, but we also have over 300 members internationally to utilize. This group is very unique in that there are no other groups in existence that are like BIMRS, and it is truly one aspect that puts our service facility above all others. See www.bimrs.org for more information on this group including other participating members..
We are also a Bosch Authorized Service center. This is also a unique group to be a part of and in this case you do not choose to be a member, they choose you! . Bosch is one of the leading manufacturers or vendors of BMW, Mercedes and Mini OE and factory parts. They and they only admit service facilities which fit into their rigid requirements to be included in their network. As a member, Bosch allows us to participate in factory level training that not even dealers are not even able to attend. And because they build specific components for BMW, Mercedes and Mini this training is unique and more specific than the training that dealer techicians get thorugh the dealership. We are very proud to have this status and affiliation.
See http://www.boschservice.com/Pages/Overview.aspx for more information on Bosch.
In addition to BIMRS and Bosch we are also a member of LMVIND (Independent Technical Information Systems for Vehicles Manufactured by Mercedes-Benz). Through this membership we have special factory level Mercedes training and information available to all of our technicians.
See www.lmvind.com for more information.
I just need an oil change, do I need an appointment?
We do require appointments for all service so that we can efficiently service your vehicle in a timely matter. Small services like an oil change or a bulb that might be out are services that we can usually fit into your schedule so that it is most convenient for you and potentially can wait while we perform that service. If you need to schedule an appointment see http://www.lonestarbavarian.com/scheduling.htm to do so.
You said I could wait on my oil change, can I wait on other services my vehicle needs?
We try to accommodate your schedule but whether or not you wait, or just drop off and go is ultimately your decision. We have a very comfortable wait area that includes a very large flat screen TV in addition to a very comfortable seating arrangements (probably too comfortable, I have noted that several clients have dozed off on occasion). We also have wireless access if it is needed. We try to accommodate your schedule but whether or not you wait, or just drop off and go is ultimately your decision. Please discuss your the options with the service writer when scheduling an apointment. While it is possible that waiting may not be a good idea on large jobs that may take a day or more but, each service, vehicle and client are unique so that decision is up to you and we will make all possible arrangements needed based on your needs as the client.
Does Lone Star Bavarian offer shuttle service?
Yes, we do have shuttle service and can accommodate picking you up or taking you home or to work as long as it is within the Fort Worth Interstate 820 Loop. If you need to be accommodated outside of that our service area please discuss this when scheduling your appointment. Shuttle service needed outside of the 820 Loop is decided on a case by case basis. Remember we do try to accommodate each all our client/customer the best we can, however, some areas are not accommodating to our staff’s schedule. Please understand that we only have one shuttle driver at any time and if he or she has to leave this perimeter it can create issues with for other client/customers needing to be shuttled. However we will make exceptions so please ask at the time you are scheduling your appointment.