Stay Away from AFI Performance in Edmonton!

Stay Away from AFI Performance in Edmonton!

Postby TheNubkins » Tue Feb 17, 2009 5:53 am

Anyone in the Edmonton area considering using AFI Performance for any of your buildup/tune/modifications I highly urge you to go ELSEWHERE. I took my car there back in the summer for a simple turbo swap(approximately 5 hr job).

The car was supposed to go in on the Tuesday so I dropped it off Monday around noon so it was all ready to go Tuesday morning. I was told to pick it up Wednesday afternoon. I show up on Wednesday to find out they completely forgot about my car and hadn't even started on it. They promptly pulled it into the shop and began to work on it and told me to come back on Thursday afternoon.

Thursday afternoon I show up expecting the car to be finished. They were only halfway done when I arrived and I had to come back on Friday to pick her up. Big whoop you say...things got side-tracked and it took a bit longer than expected. Well here's the rest...some of which I've just now began to discover as I started pulling things apart to finish my project off properly!

1. I provided step by step instructions on removing the stock turbo system, WITH pictures, as well as the same thing for installing the turbo kit. They didn't even bother to look at the instructions.

2. It took them almost 18 hours to complete the swap, but only charged me 8hours. It was supposed to be charged at $80/hr, but instead the bill was charged at $100.

3. I asked for all used parts to be placed in the box in the trunk. They snuck off and sold the cat from the stock downpipe.

4. Instead of using the provided coupler they used some oddball 45degree coupler that was oversized on both ends to join the stock intake air piping to the new turbo. The coupler was oversized in excess of 1/4inch on each side. They figured a seriously torqued down clamp would remedy this. The underside of the turbo connection was completely open to atmosphere and was sucking in unfiltered air!!

5. AFI damaged a lot of the threads on the provided stainless steel allen bolts for the turbo kit, and used improperly sized steel ones that rusted to shit.

6. They pocketed the exhaust gasket for the downpipe/midpipe connection and used silicone instead...this worked like shit as well.

7. Instead of removing the stock turbo from the exhaust manifold they removed the manifold from the head, messing up the studs. Instead of telling me they needed new studs AND a new exhaust manifold-head gasket they put it all back together. Studs were cross-threaded into the aluminum block and some of these were done out of square(crooked).

8. They welded one of the nuts to the stud on the manifold because they could not thread the stud into the head. When I went to remove the manifold later(due to the exhaust leak caused by their shitty work quality) this proved to be a problem. I had all the nuts off the studs with the exception of the one they welded. This nut/stud was so loose that the manifold had approx. 1/8inch gap between it and the head. HUGE exhaust leak...no wonder I was smelling exhaust all the time.

9. They butchered the coolant line adapters for the turbo kit which will need to be fixed as I put everything back together.

10. After everything was done they installed the manual boost controller BACKWARDS. How the hell do you screw up such a simple mod...especially if it was already installed with the stock turbo setup. Before bringing the car to them I backed off the boost controller so the car would be seeing the wastegate setting. Anyways because they installed the lines backwards my wastegate was not seeing boost pressure and the first time I stepped on it to test out the new turbo I hit fuel cut which I had raised to around 17psi. I should have seen the 10psi that the Tial wastegate was set for. If I had have disabled my fuel cut completely my engine would be damaged to shit and back.

11. The stock rad fan and shroud is too large for the turbo kit. I was aware of this and let them know that if they needed to they can go ahead and install a slimmer fan and bill me for it. They claimed to remedy the situation by moving the stock fan over a bit. Turns out they actually bent the shroud to clear the turbo. This in turn causes the fan blades to smack into the deformed shroud.

12. They didn't install the downpipe support bracket that came with the turbo kit because they "didn't know what it was for". I made them install the part.

13. Instead of wrapping the heat reflective material around one of the clutch lines that is close to the turbo assembly(more a precaution than a necessity) they wrapped it around the vacuum line going from the turbo boost pressure source to the wastegate.

14. Just before I left I was talking with the "mechanic" who had done all the work on my car. Turns out he had 3 months experience working on cars. Before that he attempted carpentry, welding, and a few other career options with little success and all of which were held for no longer than 6 months.

15. AFI busted off the heat shield bolts/screws that go into the exhaust manifold. I had to drill out and re-tap those holes myself and fix their mistake.

All in all I've spent probably 4 hours repairing the shitty work they've done. It's cost me way more money in the long run, not to mention headache. I'm so angry to know that my car was treated in such a way by a "Performance" shop where they are supposed to have a love for cars, engines, etc and take pride in their work. Like I've mentioned before...I wouldn't even trust AFI Performance to put fuel in the gas tank. What a crock of shit shop. STAY CLEAR and pass this along to anyone you might know who is considering using AFI Performance. The only good thing they ever did for me was lend me a fender roller which I used myself.
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The Nubkins

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Postby alltracst185 » Tue Feb 17, 2009 4:07 pm

wow! that's why i do all my work myself. why didn't you do a simple turbo swap yourself? :shrug:
st185- HKS exhaust, Aussie mid pipe and custom 3" down pipe, Tial 50mm BOV, HKS 272 cams, HKS adj cam gears, custom FMIC, HKS GT3040, Tial 38mm wastegate, AEM ems, fully built bottom end, RC 1200cc injectors, at 25 lbs and almost complete :D
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Postby LegacyofDan » Tue Feb 17, 2009 4:29 pm

that is just scary bro...just plan scary....wow....
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Postby TheNubkins » Tue Feb 17, 2009 4:59 pm

alltracst185 wrote:wow! that's why i do all my work myself. why didn't you do a simple turbo swap yourself? :shrug:


Back in the summer I hadn't really done much with my car myself so I "lacked the balls" to venture into stuff like this. Now that I've gotten my feet wet I realize it's not as intimidating as I had thought. :)

I'm looking back now kicking myself for that decision. Ah well, live and learn I guess.
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Postby alltracst185 » Tue Feb 17, 2009 5:30 pm

the only way to learn is to do!!!!! :wink:
st185- HKS exhaust, Aussie mid pipe and custom 3" down pipe, Tial 50mm BOV, HKS 272 cams, HKS adj cam gears, custom FMIC, HKS GT3040, Tial 38mm wastegate, AEM ems, fully built bottom end, RC 1200cc injectors, at 25 lbs and almost complete :D
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Postby RWDragoon » Tue Feb 17, 2009 11:04 pm

If you need a REAL performance shop with lots of GT4 and All-Trac experiance try www.vexperformance.com out of the 4 people that work there 2 drive GT4RC's daily. Worse case Red Deer is a free tow with AMA as well
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Postby YerRandO » Wed Feb 18, 2009 1:47 am

It's like everything that could go wrong...did. Atleast your doing the right thing and spending the time to learn to do it yourself, properly.

Have you talked to the shop about all the problems you've had, now that you've found them?
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Postby TheNubkins » Wed Feb 18, 2009 3:35 am

YerRandO wrote:It's like everything that could go wrong...did. Atleast your doing the right thing and spending the time to learn to do it yourself, properly.

Have you talked to the shop about all the problems you've had, now that you've found them?


Na, I didn't end up going back to them. I'm pissed enough as it is. I did debate, for a while anyways, going back and taking a huge crap on their shop entrance...but figured it wasn't worth my time. lol. It was more than half a year ago that they worked on the car so I don't even think they would remember me. Either way they have lost any future business from me.

RWDragoon wrote:If you need a REAL performance shop with lots of GT4 and All-Trac experiance try www.vexperformance.com out of the 4 people that work there 2 drive GT4RC's daily. Worse case Red Deer is a free tow with AMA as well


Ah, thanks for the info. Depending on how things shape up...if I ever decide to rebuild the engine I'll look into that shop. :)
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-2001 VW Golf TDI
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Postby ChrisD » Wed Feb 18, 2009 2:41 pm

yikes....next time get some people from these boards to make a day of the job. I've found that when you supply the beer you can usually find one or two suckers....errr I mean buddies to help. :D

Plus like you said, once you take a look for yourself you realize that you can probably tackle anything - it's not that tough usually.
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Postby ChrisD » Wed Feb 18, 2009 2:52 pm

Did some searching on AFI at beyond.ca...seems like if you talk to the owner, Martin, they are ok. But from their website it seems they specialize on domestics a bit too much for my liking. :shrug:
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Postby LegacyofDan » Wed Feb 18, 2009 2:53 pm

chris_dittrick wrote:Plus like you said, once you take a look for yourself you realize that you can probably tackle anything - it's not that tough usually.


Granted if u have the right tools, and the right information to assist you in ur endeavor. Wrong amount of torque can spell out disastrous for your car...

my point is just dont get too cocky make sure u r well prepared as well :)

find the perfect median amongst doing it urself and getting help :)
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Postby TomsGT4 » Thu Feb 19, 2009 4:07 pm

I wouldn't bring my car to a shop if they paid me. Ha ha ha.
Actually these days, the only thing I get a shop/(guys at work) to do is press in-out bearings & bushes, or tig weld.

What a bunch of nuckleheads.
Hope the new turbo is treating you nicely these days though :)
Tom
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Postby TheNubkins » Thu Feb 19, 2009 5:47 pm

TomsGT4 wrote:I wouldn't bring my car to a shop if they paid me. Ha ha ha.
Actually these days, the only thing I get a shop/(guys at work) to do is press in-out bearings & bushes, or tig weld.

What a bunch of nuckleheads.
Hope the new turbo is treating you nicely these days though :)


Since I've switched to the CS style hood and bumper I've been taking it very easy with the car. The turbo hasn't really seen much action because my air/air intercooler became useless. Soon that will all change!! MUAH HA HA. :evil:
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-1990 Toyota Celica All-Trac Turbo
-2001 VW Golf TDI
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Postby TheNubkins » Fri Apr 24, 2009 3:19 am

Not to drag this whole thread back to life or anything but I stumbled on an interesting set of posts at another site involving AFI Performance and a guy who is apparently out twenty large.(I feel like Vin Diesel saying it like that :D )

Click Here--->Another AFI Performance Blunder<---Click Here

I would like to state though that I don't personally hold Martin responsible for the shit job that was done to my car as he only does the tuning, but as the owner of the shop he should have been overseeing the whole job a lot better and ensuring quality work was being done.

P.S. Notice I went all fancy with the colors. :D I think I'm a little too happy as my project is nearing completion.
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-1990 Toyota Celica All-Trac Turbo
-2001 VW Golf TDI
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