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Q I TOOK MY 1988 vehicle to Firestone on Dec. 5 last year to have them give my car a tune-up.

I told them I thought I was using too much gas. That day I picked the car up and they charged me $101.41, parts and labor, for the tune-up and to replace the plugs, a valve and the fuel filter.

When I drove from their premises it did not seem as if they had done anything to my car.

The next week, I went back and told them I wasn't even getting 20 miles to the gallon and repeated my complaint that the car was using a lot of gas.

The man in charge told me to go back to the dealer that sold me the car.

Then he suggested that I pay another $35 to have the problem diagnosed by their computer to find out what was wrong.

I don't have that kind of money. This is not right and I feel these people charged me too much.

-- E.K., Lancaster
A WE DON'T KNOW what their "tune-up" involved beyond changing the plugs and replacing the PCF valve and fuel filter, but we assume the costs of the tune-up were explained to you before the job was done.

As to your complaint, Joe Stallone of Firestone's George Urban Boulevard location in Depew tells us: "To the best of my memory, when this customer came in I told him that the car shouldn't need a tune-up with only 12,000 miles on it and a tune-up was not going to solve his problem.

"He insisted he wanted a tune-up anyway. He returned a day later and, as I did when he came in the first time, I told him he should go back to the dealer to see whatever his problem was and told him most of the problems would probably be covered under warranty.

"It seemed to me that he didn't want to go back to the dealer and expected his diagnosis of a tune-up to solve his problem."

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