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Fuming and need advice.

(31 Posts)
PhantomMenace Wed 22-Jan-14 15:17:09

We bought a car exactly a month ago, a 7 seater Fiat Ulysse due to DC4's arrival in April. We got it on finance for just short of £3k. Today as DH is driving to work the car just stopped dead. Phoned AA who towed him to a garage, The garage just phoned and told us it was a timing belt and it's damaged the engine.

Thanks to the position of the engine they would have to take the whole thing out, replace whats damaged and put it back. The grand total cost of repair? £2000!!!

We don't now what to do now or what rights we have with regards to taking the fucking car back to where we got it. We don't have that kind of money to pay for the repair and as we have only had it for a month I don't see why we should have to.

Can anyone help with regards to what we could possibly do next because we are utterly clueless. I seriously want to cry.

PhantomMenace Wed 22-Jan-14 16:15:12


PistolAnnies Wed 22-Jan-14 16:18:15

Ouch, that's what happens when you buy a Fiat blush Sorry!

PartyConfused Wed 22-Jan-14 16:18:35

We had a car that a few months in needed something expensive replacing (sorry - can't remember but thinknit was head gasket). My DH did loads of research as it was sold to us 'as seen'.
Anyway, long story short, the seller refused at first, but realised we had researched our rights and agreed to do the work.

ShatnersBassoon Wed 22-Jan-14 16:18:48

Yikes, the timing belt is one of those things that is cheap to replace as part of regular maintenance but horribly harmful if it's left until it goes.

How many miles are on the car? Does it have a service history? Any evidence of the belt having been changed at regular intervals?

lostblonde86 Wed 22-Jan-14 16:20:10

Just asked hubby on the matter, and he said speak to the dealership as the car isn't fit for purpose. Hope you get something sorted soon xx

WholeLottaRosie Wed 22-Jan-14 16:20:21

Where did you buy it from? If it's from a business there is no such thing as 'sold as seen'.

ConfusedDotty Wed 22-Jan-14 16:22:05

Did you not get a warranty with the car?

I don't think they would do anything after a month unless you have a warranty. Sorry.

PhantomMenace Wed 22-Jan-14 16:23:09

It had 70,000 miles on the clock when we bought it, one previous owner full service history etc. The dealer had put on a years MOT and tax and was ment to do a 65 point check before we picked it up. Only looing now we see that timing belts are ment to be replaced every 72k miles. Surely they should have done this before they sold it to us.

Windmillsinthesand Wed 22-Jan-14 16:25:09

Would getting a scrap engine be cheaper,that is what we did when the head gasket went in our car.

Orlea Wed 22-Jan-14 16:25:20

I think there is a cooling off period in which any major faults are the seller's responsibility to repair or replace. We bought a car a few years ago and after about three weeks the battery just packed in, so straight on the phone to the dealer and they picked it up and brought it back with new battery, no cost (other than the hassle, wasted time, time without car as no courtesy car available etc). Worth checking.

Also as Shatner says, replacing a timing belt is easier and a known requirement, so sounds like the seller may be at fault for either not having checked it was ok, or selling it knowing it wasn't.

HomeHelpMeGawd Wed 22-Jan-14 16:26:05
MrsArthurWellesley Wed 22-Jan-14 16:26:52

I think the money saving expert website or trading standards might have some stuff on this. I would expect the dealer to make it good given that you only bought it a month ago.

PhantomMenace Wed 22-Jan-14 16:43:45

Thank you home that was really helpful, I feel a tad calmer now. We do have a warranty btw, it's just going to be such a PITA until it's all sorted.

JammyDodger1 Wed 22-Jan-14 16:50:00

Hi Phantom did you buy it from a main dealer?
I am a warranty administrator so know a little about warranties if I can help smile

chanie44 Wed 22-Jan-14 16:55:40

The timing chain on my car went once. I had a timing chain rather than a belt and I was told that basically, it snapped, spending bits flying around and destroying the engine. It was a big job.

To be honest, I'm not sure how much luck you'll get after owing the car for 7 months, as I think it's 'one of those things' that can happen to cars and doesn't necessarily mean the dealer has done something dodgy. You never know, you may get somewhere if you take it up.

I do feel your pain.

perplexedpirate Wed 22-Jan-14 16:59:05

My Punto's gear box went 11 days after I bought it. angry
According to my brother, FIAT stands for Fix It Again Tomorrow.
Sorry, not helpful, but I feel your pain.

Norudeshitrequired Wed 22-Jan-14 17:04:58

Any goods should be fit for purpose otherwise you are entitled to a refund. A car should certainly last more than a month, so it clearly doesn't meet the fit for purpose description.
As you have a warranty is the repair cost covered? If it isn't covered then threaten them with trading standards.

GrandadGrumps Wed 22-Jan-14 17:04:59

Speak to the garage and if that fails speak to the finance company - they're jointly liable if the vehicle isn't fit for purpose.

The timing belt change is 72k miles or X years (4 years is it on Fiats?) whichever comes first. Have you checked the service history to see if/when it was changed? How many miles are on it now?

Chanie theyve had tbe car for onr month

holidaysarenice Wed 22-Jan-14 17:21:35

Timing chains are in newer cars, they don't need replaced as much but can break. Timing belts are cheaper to renew than replace and need done at 70000 ish miles.

You often can't tell they will go until they do.

Also I don't think you have much of a case as the car had less than the recommended mileage for change when you bought it. Also its something I would think to ask if buying a car with those miles. And I'm not car handy at all.

holidaysarenice Wed 22-Jan-14 17:28:12

Had it been anything else I wud have said not fit for purpose but not with a timing belt.

I know its harsh, but its because of the nature of a belt. I think that's how TS etc will see it

holidaysarenice Wed 22-Jan-14 17:29:52

If you have done over the recommended mileage for a timing belt change I doubt the warranty will cover it?

What mileage have you done?

PhantomMenace Wed 22-Jan-14 17:31:42

It wasn't a main dealer jammy. There is about 71.5k miles on it now, I don't know if it has been changed before, we do have the past 4 years worth of MOT certificates and nothing at all has been flagged up on those.

GrandadGrumps Wed 22-Jan-14 17:40:19

It's not an MOT item anyway. As I've said, it doesn't usually just depend on the mileage, it's a time-based change as well, they're made of rubber and they deteriorate over time. The car's obviously over 4 years old so it should have already had a belt change, if not two. Ignore the 72k thing, particularly as it's not over that anyway.

As long as it wasn't a private sale then it's the garage's responsibility to repair it and you need to get on to them straight away. if they're not helpful then you need to get on to the finance company.

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