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To wonder if this seller should have done anything else?

(4 Posts)
TheDetective Mon 05-Sep-11 20:01:04

I found an item on eBay I wanted to buy. It was an alternator for my DF's car, as his has broken. I contacted the seller, and asked could we come and collect the item from them, as we needed it urgently. They are a business 30 miles away from us. We arrived at their yard, and after much searching, they found an alternator for us, but not the one advertised on eBay - the guys response was 'oops, I must have forgotten to take it off, but this one will work anyway'. So we go away with the item, and pay someone to fit it, which they do. It didn't work, the item was defective. There was no way for us to know this until the part was fitted to the car. So we had already paid a mechanic £50 to fit it. We then had to pay for them to take it back off (that is a separate issue!). Travel back the 30 miles, to exchange the broken alternator for a hopefully working one. We now have to pay another £50 to have it fitted.

Do you think the business we bought it from should have reimbursed us any of our lost costs for their defective item? I can't think logically, because I'm just too pissed off at it!

PigletJohn Mon 05-Sep-11 20:22:49

personally, I think not

If you're the sort of person who buys parts off a scrapyard, there is an assumption (1) that there is a chance they might not work (2) you are a handy sort of DIY mechanic who will fit it yourself.

If you look at the scrapper's terms of business it will certainly say that if the part you buy is faulty, they will exchange it, but accept no responsibility for other costs.

A lot of alternators are the same, and you just have to swap the front part and pulley over to suit your car; you take these bits off your old faulty one. It is good practice to take your old part to the yard so you can compae it to the one you are going to buy and verify it is the same. they usually make an allowance for swapping in the old one.

If you don't want to take the risks inherent in buying parts off a scrapyard, you can buy an exchange recon or new OEM alternator from any motor factor, which will be guaranteed. I don't know current prices.

If you are going to pay someone else to fit it for you, you should look up a local auto electrician. He will doubtless have a source of recon parts and will do you a supply and fit price. Then you have no journey, and only one business to contact if you have a complaint.

Tigerstripes Mon 05-Sep-11 20:43:56

You can give bad feedback because the item they sold you was not the same one as on the advert but I think that's all you'll be able to do tbh. Did the ebay description say anything like 'tested and working'? Or have a returns policy? But you're not being unreasonable to be mad. I'd be fuming!

Oggy Mon 05-Sep-11 20:51:25

Sorry, I don't think they owe you anything other than replacement or refund of cost of alternator.

They had no way of knowing about or mitigating your costs in fitting the alternator. The only reasonable way to expect them to pay this is if it were agreed in advance. They are bound to provide you with the working alternator you have paid for, my not additional losses IMO.

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