Flex your consumer muscles…

N47 timing chain failure

6 months ago we sold a 2009 BMW 318i which we had acquired following an engine failure. After repairing the car it was snapped up quickly, partly I suspect due to the offer of a 12 month warranty.

This month the car came back to us with an intermittent misfire. Evidence pointed towards a slightly bent valve and so we bit the bullet and arranged a new, fully re-manufactured cylinder head and associated ancillaries.

This process got me to thinking about the less scrupulous motor traders who disown faults which occur after purchase, or those who sell ‘off the shelf’ warranties (always marketed with titles such as GOLD or Platinum or VIP), but which have enough exclusions to mean they rarely pay out.

We see so many people who have been let down after buying a car from dealer, and who did not know what protections exist for them since September 2015.

The Consumer Rights Act (2015) effectively introduces a 30-day Right to Reject for consumers when a purchase is of unsatisfactory quality, not fit for purpose or not as described, and when it has been bought from a trader.

It is becoming more common then for people to buy their used car, and then drive it straight to a specialist to have the vehicle examined with a view to identifying latent defects within the magic 30 day period. We certainly do many more ‘new car inspections’ than ever before.

So when you next buy a used car, flex your consumer muscle and ask a specialist to check the vehicle over to ensure that you know if your car is hiding an unwelcome and potentially expensive secret.

Between the lines…

At least once a week we get a telephone call from a prospective customer asking us for a comparison quote for a replacement part. A part they have been told needs replacing because, in many cases, a mechanic has plugged in their magic diagnosis machine and after a little witchcraft the machine has announced that the Diesel Particulate Filter is faulty, or perhaps it is the fuel rail or some other component. Continue reading “Between the lines…”