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Old 07-22-2010, 06:20 PM   #1
jonnyGURU
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Default iPass Fail. Stupid Illinois DOT transponder.

So today I get a bill in the mail from IDOT stating that I owe them $60+ for unpaid tolls.

$20 for each missed toll, times three, plus the $1 or $1.50 for each toll across two different days (two on one day, one on another).

Funny thing is, I logged into my account and it said that on the same days I missed tolls, IDOT registered that I also went through tolls and paid with my iPass transponder.

So it's like "paid toll", "missed toll", "paid toll", "missed toll", so I assume there's something wrong with the transponder.

I called IDOT and they waived the fees and just charged me for the tolls. They said, "in the future, call ahead and tell us you missed the tolls."

How would I know I missed the tolls?!?! The iPass transponder has no lights and doesn't beep. When I lived in Florida, we had Sun Pass. Sun Pass would beep one way to tell you it registered a toll and another way to tell you your account was low. I told the lady at IDOT this and she said the old iPass transponders were like that, but customers complained that they beeped too much.

WHAT?!?!

So how are you supposed to know when your transponder doesn't pay a toll so you can call and pay the toll before a notice with a fee is sent out? WTF?!?!

Back to the transponder not working... I told her clearly it's not working if only half the tolls are registering and asked if the battery may be low. She said you can't replace the battery and only replace the whole transponder once it's determined the battery is dead. So I say "ok... replace my transponder." She replied, "well, you've only had it for three years and we usually don't replace them until after 6 or 7 years because that's how long the batteries typically last."

Umm... life expectancy of a battery can vary.

So if I miss a toll, I'm supposed to call ahead of time.... But the transponder doesn't tell me when I make or miss a toll.... my battery might be dead... but they won't replace the transponder until after 6 years.

What a cluster fsck.
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Old 07-22-2010, 06:23 PM   #2
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There are no toll roads in Minnesota

That does suck though Maybe this is one of those situations where you just have to complain over and over again until someone does something. Make it more of a hassle to not deal with you than to deal with you.
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Old 07-22-2010, 06:24 PM   #3
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There is nothing in Minnesota
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Old 07-22-2010, 06:24 PM   #4
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Glad I've never driven on a toll road in my life.
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Old 07-22-2010, 06:28 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by OCGuy View Post
fixed
Lets be fair. Minnesota does have the mall of america, but that's because it's dirt cheap to build something that big in the middle of nowhere.
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Old 07-22-2010, 06:35 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jonnyGURU View Post
So today I get a bill in the mail from IDOT stating that I owe them $60+ for unpaid tolls.

$20 for each missed toll, times three, plus the $1 or $1.50 for each toll across two different days (two on one day, one on another).

Funny thing is, I logged into my account and it said that on the same days I missed tolls, IDOT registered that I also went through tolls and paid with my iPass transponder.

So it's like "paid toll", "missed toll", "paid toll", "missed toll", so I assume there's something wrong with the transponder.

I called IDOT and they waived the fees and just charged me for the tolls. They said, "in the future, call ahead and tell us you missed the tolls."

How would I know I missed the tolls?!?! The iPass transponder has no lights and doesn't beep. When I lived in Florida, we had Sun Pass. Sun Pass would beep one way to tell you it registered a toll and another way to tell you your account was low. I told the lady at IDOT this and she said the old iPass transponders were like that, but customers complained that they beeped too much.

WHAT?!?!

So how are you supposed to know when your transponder doesn't pay a toll so you can call and pay the toll before a notice with a fee is sent out? WTF?!?!

Back to the transponder not working... I told her clearly it's not working if only half the tolls are registering and asked if the battery may be low. She said you can't replace the battery and only replace the whole transponder once it's determined the battery is dead. So I say "ok... replace my transponder." She replied, "well, you've only had it for three years and we usually don't replace them until after 6 or 7 years because that's how long the batteries typically last."

Umm... life expectancy of a battery can vary.

So if I miss a toll, I'm supposed to call ahead of time.... But the transponder doesn't tell me when I make or miss a toll.... my battery might be dead... but they won't replace the transponder until after 6 years.

What a cluster fsck.
At the end of the call, did she ask if there was anything else she could help you with?

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Old 07-22-2010, 06:42 PM   #7
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Wtf, that is their resolution? There must be a way to dispute this.
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Old 07-22-2010, 06:43 PM   #8
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Wow that fvckin sucks ...

I imagine I'll be dealing with a similar dilema in a couple of years ... my Ipass transponder is maybe 5-6 years old now ....
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Old 07-22-2010, 06:50 PM   #9
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Last time I had that happen to me, they billed me the "cash rate" rather than the ipass rate and told me "That is the way it is." Cash rate is 2x ipass rate...
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Old 07-22-2010, 07:04 PM   #10
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While heading to San Francisco to pick-up my brother from SFO, I had never driven through the toll road there and accidentally became committed to an Auto Toll lane because I was distracted trying to read the freaking poorly worded digital signage (which was displaying some message that was not relevant to me). I guess I could have backed up but I didn't think that was safe or wise. No attendant was there. There was no place to pull-off after going through the toll booth. There was an office open but it was on the OTHER side of a divided highway. I was literally stopped at the toll booth for about five seconds, wondering what to do. So I said screw it, I'll just continue on and then stop on my way back, tell them what happened and pay the toll.

Nope, so sorry. They wouldn't take it. I'd have to pay the $35 fine for accidentally "evading" a $5 toll. I could appeal it in writing but we all know how that works.

Last edited by tcsenter; 07-22-2010 at 10:55 PM.
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Old 07-22-2010, 07:08 PM   #11
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yes. it sucks.

Also the idea of Ipass was if you pre-pay you would'nt pay as much as someone paying cash. Well that idea is getting shot down. they are trying to make it so ipass and cash pay the same (high) rate.

i had my transpoder start to mess up. i called and got the same lvl of run around. but hell if you want a new transponder go to the store and get one. they will switch the numbers around without any problem. just don't ask before you do it heh.
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Old 07-22-2010, 07:22 PM   #12
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Quote:
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Quote:
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There are 10,000 lakes and 20 bajillion mosquitos in Minnesota
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Old 07-22-2010, 07:53 PM   #13
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Screw toll roads.
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Old 07-22-2010, 10:03 PM   #14
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Quote:
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At the end of the call, did she ask if there was anything else she could help you with?
Of course. At least she wasn't in India or the Phillipines.

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Wtf, that is their resolution? There must be a way to dispute this.
I guess I'll just keep having my transponder only pick up half the tolls, call them every month and after three more years they'll give me a new transponder. *shrug*
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Old 07-22-2010, 11:32 PM   #15
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Yeah, the Illinois system is horrible. They have indicators if you go through the toll booths, but no indicators exist for the dedicated express lanes or on the transponders (I think the beta test transponders did have a LCD readout). I think I got hit with something like $150 in fines and such because I didn't know that the prepaid allotment on mine had run out. It took three-four months for the first fine to go through so I drove the entire summer without any notification of any problems. By then I was out of the country and had to straighten this out half the world away.
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Old 07-22-2010, 11:36 PM   #16
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Illinois is broke. They will do whatever they can to raise money. This is but one symptom. One other is the 23895238957 cops you drove past on the way to your destination. It's sad when Indiana and Missouri are relatively well-managed states.
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Old 07-23-2010, 12:32 AM   #17
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What? Bureaucratic clusterfuck on the roads of Illinois? I don't believe it.
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Old 07-23-2010, 12:49 AM   #18
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your transponders use batteries? join the 21st century, illinois. ours are just a sticker with an antenna in it that uses the reader's radio waves for power and the windshield as an amplifier.
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Old 07-23-2010, 12:53 AM   #19
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They may replace it for you at one of the "Customer Service" kiosks at the Oases. Just out of curiosity, how fast were you driving through the toll booth\ open road toll thing?
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Old 07-23-2010, 12:53 AM   #20
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lol, I have the sunpass mini no battery to mess with.
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Old 07-23-2010, 01:00 AM   #21
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Tell them "Jesus already paid my toll."
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Old 07-23-2010, 01:16 AM   #22
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My dad has one of those iPass things. He always holds right up to the top of the windshield to give it the best opportunity to work properly.

Since the battery lasts such a long time, I doubt it has a very strong antenna.
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Old 07-23-2010, 01:32 AM   #23
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The new ones in colorado have a replaceable battery and a button to press that lets you test it.

But they are unnecessary because they replaced all the toll booths with liscense plate scanners that automatically send you a bill in the mail.
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Old 07-23-2010, 08:15 AM   #24
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Quote:
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They may replace it for you at one of the "Customer Service" kiosks at the Oases. Just out of curiosity, how fast were you driving through the toll booth\ open road toll thing?
You think it's a speed thing? I do admit, I was doing 80 to 85 down the Tri-State when I went through those tolls.

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My dad has one of those iPass things. He always holds right up to the top of the windshield to give it the best opportunity to work properly.

Since the battery lasts such a long time, I doubt it has a very strong antenna.
But that's ridiculous that you have to do that. The loaner cars at the local Hyundai dealer has the iPass bolted to the license plate frame and I doubt they have any problem with tolls. It's just Illinois cheaping out on the transponders that WE, the customers, are foced to pay for and they're trying to save money by not replacing faulty transponders after 3 years of use. They're also trying to make money off people that can't prove they DID use their faulty transponders when they only blow through one toll. I was lucky because half of my tolls showed up on my account.
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Old 07-23-2010, 08:25 AM   #25
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iPass, eh? Does Apple make the transponder? That would explain it.
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