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First off, this is a lengthy play by play of my recent experiences with AGR Power Steering, A Matek Performance Inc, Company. My background is in private wrenching on my homebuilt rigs. I have rock crawling Jeeps and Fords over the years and know the basics real well. I live by the philosophy if you’re going to do something, do it RIGHT!!!!!My family owns and operates a single line motorcycle dealership and the only way we have been successful is by putting customers needs first. Unfortunately there are organizations out there that feel integrity and honesty are not as important as I. This is a real shame as not many people NEED anything AGR has to offer, but choose to because they have higher then OEM standards or have a love for tinkering with their vehicles. But when a company like AGR is bought by an entity wishing to turn a profit first, enjoy it second, QUALITY WILL SUFFER. If you own a Superduty Ford, then this experience directly pertains to you, if you wish to use any AGR performance product, I highly suggest taking the 5-10 minutes to read this over and take it for what it’s worth, my repeatedly bad experiences with them over the past month. Thanks in advance for your time and hope you can pass on this message!!

Wednesday, 07/21/2004 – Spoke to Larry, Vice President of AGR Steering, A Matek Company about options for replacing/upgrading worn power steering on a 2000 Ford Excursion 4x4 with PSD(PowerStroke Diesel) and equipped with hydro boost brakes. I was informed there were a couple options and made notes of pricing and various details. Larry informed me of an upgraded new steering box that has been specially modified to work for my application and recommended I purchase a non OEM style performance steering pump that would require some modification to install.

Monday, 08/09/2004 – Spoke to Larry of AGR and placed an order for an upgraded replacement steering box and pump and re-evaluated my concerns and needs. I again provided the exact details of my vehicle such as year, make, model, engine size and equipped with hydro-boost brakes. I provided my billing address for credit card verification and requested that the items be shipped to my work address, which I provided.

Friday, 08/13/2004 – Contacted Larry of AGR for a tracking number as the items had not arrived at my work as discussed. Turns out the items were shipped to my residence and the UPS driver left package without requiring a signature in my driveway. The items being shipped to the wrong address was just a sign of the impending incompetence yet to come.

Sunday, 08/15/2004 – Removed my original worn out power steering components and prepared to install the items shipped. Upon installing the new power steering pump, I found it odd that it resembled my stock pump and that it required exchanging the new pumps reservoir for my old reservoir. This did not strike me as overly odd, but not as discussed prior. I was certain this must be the right pump as it was similar to my old unit, but not exactly alike. Unfortunately AGR does not have a very good web site with DETAILED instructions or any FAQ area let alone a weekend support line for such occasions. Then when I attempted to install the new performance steering box they sent, I discovered that my original pitman arm and the indexing of the replacement unit did not match up. So neither of the two items is correct, (i.e. the pump sent was for a vehicle without hydro boost and the steering box is not a direct replacement let alone an upgraded box)

Monday, 08/16/2004 – Contacted Larry at AGR and informed him I was having an issue using my original pitman arm with their upgraded replacement unit. He advised me to send the box back immediately so they could determine the cause. I did not mention the wrong pump at this time cause I felt I had addressed what appeared to be a simple mix up.

Tuesday, 08/17/2004 – Contacted Kevin in AGR’s Technical Assistance Dept to obtain a Return Authorization number and had to request they pay for return 3 day select shipping as timing was critical for me to avoid major inconveniences.

Friday, 08/20/2004 – Kevin contacted me to determine my exact problem. He asked if I had been informed in any prior discussions that I would need a new pitman arm in order to use their upgraded power steering box and I replied I had not. He then provided me with the Ford part number that was required and I ordered immediately from my local Ford dealer as he proceeded to package the box up and send it back to me. This could have been very easily prevented with minimal documentation. A simple Word document or better web site would easily have addressed this problem and saved over a week and a half of down time and frustration not to mention AGR’s shipping costs and time. Lack of communication and major lack of consideration on AGR’s part is evident. Also if Larry followed a simple flow chart for troubleshooting that particular product it would have been a no brainer to advise me how to correct the problem.

Thursday, 08/26/2004 – I finally receive my new upgraded power steering box for the second time and make plans to install that weekend.

Saturday, 08/28/2004 – I install the new power steering box, bleed the system as described in the instructions provided and discover the new power steering pump is leaking around the accumulator valve. I do some research and determine that there are two size O-Rings offered by Ford depending on reservoir and this is most likely my problem as the reservoir did not leak when installed on the old pump. This would not be an issue if I had received the correct pump in the first place!!!!

Monday, 08/30/04 – Contacted Kevin in AGR’s technical support dept to inform him of my leaking pump and that the performance of the new power steering system is unsatisfactory and is inferior to the original equipment I replaced with over 148k miles on original parts. We determined that I had been not only shipped the incorrect power steering pump for my application but that I had wanted a Modified Saginaw Performance Steering Pump to obtain the desired results. This would address the leaking reservoir and surpass my previous results and power steering performance. Kevin then informed me in order to expedite the delivery of the correct new pump that I would have to purchase the modified Saginaw performance pump and would be credited for the incorrect OEM replacement I had received and installed prior once they received it. The Labor Day weekend was approaching and he assured me I would have the pump within 3-4 working days (i.e. Thursday or Friday).

Friday, 09/03/2004 – Contacted Kevin in AGR’s technical support dept to confirm the new pump has been shipped and to which address only to discover the pump had not even been produced yet let alone shipped out. I then demanded that if the pump could not be shipped out that day for next day Sat delivery that all charges to my credit card would be disputed and all items returned to AGR in original packaging. He assured me he would handle the situation and all would be satisfactory. I would be able to install the new pump Sat afternoon with little effort and not have to cancel my holiday weekend plans. I requested that Kevin contact me later in the day to provide me with the tracking number so that I could feel assured all had gone as promised. By 5:30 EST I had not yet heard from Kevin and had to call again to request the tracking number and verify the pump had been produced and shipped.

Saturday, 09/04/2004 – I receive new pump and install in truck as instructions described. The instructions are barely adequate and the overall quality of their modified brackets to adapt this Saginaw pump for the Ford PSD is questionable. The installation of the pump does not utilize the original hardware/bolts. I had to furnish three new bolts and their bracket only utilizes 2 of the 3 bolts. The third required me making a spacer in order to keep the pump square on the bracket. Keep in mind this is late Sat afternoon after a full days work and no one to call and a web site that is far from informational. I get the pump mounted to my satisfaction and double-check all fittings and hardware. I proceeded to bleed the power steering system, then the hydro boost (directions are extremely poor and vague for this process!!!!!) Determine all air is out of the system and lower the vehicle to the ground to load test and check for proper operation. I then let truck cool down and sit overnight. I inspect fluid level the next day, warm up the truck and then take a test drive approximately 20 miles through curvy, hilly Georgia back roads. The performance is outstanding, no more whining or weak combined steering/braking issues. I am happy and satisfied. I park the vehicle for the next 6 days.

Sunday, 09/12/2004 – I go to pull truck out of garage and inspect power steering fluid for leaks and level. All appears to be normal and I then warm the truck up. Proceed to load up trailer with a GVW around 10,000lbs and plan to tow some recreational vehicles for the weekend. Make a trip to the gas station with load and just over a mile left to get home I make a sharp left U turn only to here a clanging sound followed by immediate loss of control of the steering and braking system on the truck. Once I was able to get the rig under control and prevent driving off a cliff in a residential area, I immediately shut off the vehicle and popped the hood for inspection. It turns out the power Steering pump shaft sheered off within the pump and spit out in the engine bay spewing fluid everywhere and rendering my serpentine belt useless. Fortunately I was able to avoid any major accident or injury, however the feeling of helplessness followed by the sheer disappointment and frustration was almost overwhelming. I have now been without the use of my truck in excess of 3 weeks and over 2 ½ of those weeks AGR is directly responsible for. Now I am left with much more downtime and as of yet undetermined repair expenses as the hydro boost may have been detrimentally affected. Also irreversible modifications have been made to both the pump bracket and hoses to accommodate an unreliable power steering system. I am thoroughly disgusted with the lack of integrity and competence exhibited by AGR’s product line and the lackadaisical approach to customer service.

Monday, 09/13/2004 – I attempt to contact Larry, the Vice President of AGR to inform him of my horrible product experience. He agrees the situation is frustrating and not acceptable, however his only offer is he will inspect the items upon return and consider issuing a credit to my credit cards. Now call me demanding, but as a guy who runs a family owned business I truly believe that AGR should be begging forgiveness and be oh so glad that this didn’t turn into a major accident with nothing but years of headaches and lawyers ahead. However Larry feels he owes me nothing after repeated incompetence and failures on AGR’s behalf. Is this someone you wish to do business with? AGR used to be a respectable company with integrity, however it turns out that AGR was bought out by Matek Performance, Inc. Company and customer service and a quality product is all but a legacy they no longer can fulfill. Fortunately I have been able to track down the original owner and founder of AGR and he has started a new company called PSC, Power Steering Components and is the real deal. This guy has small business in his blood and knows his product and stands behind it,…….like AGR used to. Having to even argue about a refund let alone it is held over my head like a carrot to a donkey is just outrageous. A refund still wont make up for all my lost time and aggravation, but I did learn a lot more about power steering components for the Ford Superduties and who NOT TO DEAL WITH. I encourage anyone here to email me if you are even considering purchasing an AGR product and I will give you the play by play. I have used their Rock Ram units in my rock crawling Jeeps and 4x4 trucks of the past and wished to continue using them, however this new ownership is absolutely horrible. I will be removing their products from my other vehicles and doing everything in my power to share this frustrating experience in the hopes I prevent some other good guy from going through the heart ache of doing it yourself. And this all could have be prevented by #1 being the company it used to be, #2 issuing a full refund immediately over the phone and then following up on how to get the truck back on the road.

Thanks Again for allowing me to vent and share my experiences
Robert Wooldridge, Jr
[email protected]
:flipoff2: :shaking: :evil:
 

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Discussion Starter #3
not everyone,......just ones I frequent. Wish I could get audio posted on here,......I could really teach them a thing or two about customer service after I got done beating someone senseless. Scary thing is this guy Larry is the hired gun to get the company on track,.........yikes
 

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you should have read on POR before you bought. lots 'o complaints. i'll never buy AGR
 

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Great, we get it. Do we really have to see it in every forum.. BTW this is JEEP TECH!!!! Not SD tech. Erase this chit and move it to the proper forum :flipoff2:
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I was towing my jeep when it happened,.....imagine your rock crawler surviving every trail in the NorthEast, but not the trailer ride down the street cause some jerk off business development guy has no business selling performance steering parts in any capacity. I have had great performance out of past AGR products, particularly on my Jeep and to have this kind of response when I was one of the few pro/satisfied AGR guys is very disheartening
 
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