I have taken my '04 SMB to have the front diff repaired twice at a Ford garage. The first repair lasted for 5 months but needed to be redone. When I took the van back to them I was told that Ford will not warrantee the work because the Dana 60 is not OME. I was charged for the failed parts that were installed the first time I took my van to the Ford garage.
This past summer we were driving to Oregon via Susanville, California. Just outside of Susanville the van spewed out all of the coolant onto the ground. I looked at the radiator but could not see where the coolant was pouring out of. That particular radiator was installed 3 years before.
It was Friday afternoon. We put enough water into the reservoir to fill it twice and drove to the Ford dealership on the south side of town. Fortunately our van is equipped with the Ford 5.4. It can be driven short distances with little to no coolant.
I was told by the service rep that we needed a new radiator but it would not be there until after the weekend. She said that they would replace the radiator on Tuesday.
That Tuesday afternoon I paid for a new radiator ($400) and the labor ($500). Before I left I asked to see the radiator that they had taken out. The service rep told me that it had already been sent to recycling. Since they were closing and we had to head north I drove away.
The next day I took a minute to look at the new radiator. The top tank looked no newer than the old one. I took a look at the front of the radiator. The first time I checked the front of the radiator I noticed that the fins on the right side had been flattened in a unique way. The "new radiator" had the same flattened pattern pressed into the fins on the right side.
By that time we were in Eugene. Since it was not available for me to inspect, I was not able to confirm that the radiator had actually been replaced. Since the fins were pressed down into the radiator in the same pattern that I noted on the previous Friday I can only presume that they did not replace the radiator with the OME radiator that I paid $400 for.
In these situations I have no clue what to do. Since then I have made a commitment to write down my observations and everything that I am told and take photos of the worn or broken parts and what it looked like after the repairs. Some states have good consumer protections but even then the repair shops are able to circumvent them. It is even easier when they know that you are traveling and won't be back any time soon.