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to think this is completely out of order? Car related....

(34 Posts)
TalisaMaegyr Fri 14-Mar-14 15:06:05

To cut a long story short-ish...

About a month ago, our car broke down on the way back from Wales and we had to be towed by the AA - we took it to a garage that had been recommended to us by a couple of taxi drivers as we were needing to get taxis to work while it was knackered.

We bought the part that the AA guy had told us had gone, and took it to the garage to be fitted. This took over a week, and the day after we got it back, it blew up, also completely wrecking the engine.

We then had to buy another of the same part, plus a whole engine, which were delivered to the garage, took 2 weeks to fit and we got the car back on Tuesday this week. On Wednesday, it broke down on the way home from work.

The car is back at the garage again. The mechanic won't answer the phone, we have no idea what's happening with it and I'm absolutely at my wits end.

We've had to spend over £2k on parts and labour in 3 weeks - we've had to borrow this money from DP's friend and my mum, plus almost £300 in taxis. Neither of us are on a particularly high income and this has absolutely crippled us.

Can we do anything? Surely the mechanic has some responsibility to fix this asap with no further cost to us?

Can anyone advise? I could cry, honestly.

HellomynameisIcklePickle Fri 14-Mar-14 15:08:59

Put it in a new garage. Ask on facebook for recommendations

TalisaMaegyr Fri 14-Mar-14 15:14:11

But then we'd have to pay more money. We don't have any more money, we are on our arse.

Rauma Fri 14-Mar-14 15:52:09

Depends what's actually broken, you've got three options:

1. Get the car, and keep it off the road until it's fixed, in other words until you have the money to get it fixed.
2. Pursue the garage who repaired it to do so free of charge, but I guarantee you it'll be a temporary fix to get you out of their face or they'll insist you pay.
3. Take it to an independent garage unconnected with the previous one and ask for their opinion, I'd suggest asking for recommendations off longstanding friends.

I'd probably still try to get it repaired free, the problem is no matter what's happened the garage will claim it's not that part they worked on etc.

shoom Fri 14-Mar-14 16:18:36

Have you tried CAB?

It sounds like the part was faulty, incorrectly fitted or the diagnosis was wrong.

The garage didn't diagnose the original issue or supply the part, so unless they didn't fit the part properly they just did what they were asked.

Do you know the cause of the latest breakdown?

If you've no faith in the garage then asking an independent garage to verify their work may be the best option.

LIZS Fri 14-Mar-14 16:20:25

It sounds like the part was faulty, incorrectly fitted or the diagnosis was wrong.

The garage didn't diagnose the original issue or supply the part, so unless they didn't fit the part properly they just did what they were asked.


TalisaMaegyr Fri 14-Mar-14 16:35:53

When we took it the first time, we told him that the AA had said the turbo had blown - the mechanic agreed and told us to order a new turbo, which we did. He fitted the turbo we provided, and then it blew the next day, completely fucking the engine.

So we ordered a new engine.... and another new turbo. He fitted both, then the second turbo blew on Weds.

LessMissAbs Fri 14-Mar-14 16:40:27

Its a nightmare OP. You might be cheaper to write off the car and buy another one, in the long term...

Meanwhile, you can express your disapproval to the garage and start talking in terms of Trading Standards, and see if they will offer you any money back.

The only way of otherwise getting your money back is taking out a small claim against the garage in court. But it sounds like it will be difficult to prove that the turbo wasn't faulty and instead the fitting by the garage was. Your local court will have a list of expert witnesses who are not too pricey whom you could contact and who might give some perspective over the phone.

You could also take the car or have it transported to another garage for a quote and therefore opinion on what is now needed to fix it.

Why didn't you use a part supplied by the garage?

I don't see the AA at fault because the garage made their own judgment about which part was needed. There may be another fault which is caused both turbos to blow, which the garage should have found before they fitted them. You were still relying on their expertise and any reasonable garage would have found and pointed out a fault which would have caused newly fitted turbos to blow.

TalisaMaegyr Fri 14-Mar-14 16:41:38

This is why I don't understand why we would have to pay more money. As I see it, there is a fault with the fitting, because it would be too much of a coincidence that both turbos were faulty. So surely the garage should absorb the cost of any extra work/parts?

I know I sound like a whinging bitch, but I know nothing about cars.

PeterParkerSays Fri 14-Mar-14 16:42:02

Are you sure that you've bought the right turbo, not one for a more powerful engine for example? I would expect a garage to provide replacement parts like this and we'd pay for them at the end, I wouldn't buy car bits and take them in. You wouldn't do that with a new exhaust, why would you with a turbo?

TalisaMaegyr Fri 14-Mar-14 16:43:20

The mechanic told us which parts to order, and where from. Each time we've ordered parts, we've had them shipped directly to the garage as requested by the mechanic.

PeterParkerSays Fri 14-Mar-14 16:45:23

Has the garage explained why the turbo / engine has blown up? Surely they must be able to tell at what stage of the fuel going through the system this happened?

TalisaMaegyr Fri 14-Mar-14 16:46:32

The thing is, you HAVE to put your trust in mechanics, because they supposedly are the experts. And I just feel like we've been fucked over. Not deliberately, but fucked over nonetheless.

In the meantime, we have no money, owe a couple of grand to other people, and are still no further forward, and STILL having to get taxis to and from work every day. I'm not being lazy, btw, it's just that the buses don't get there for the right times, and I have various children to pick up and drop off from various places on various days throughout the week.

Shonajoy Fri 14-Mar-14 16:49:36

What are the garage saying? This happened to me after a timing belt was fitted incorrectly the engine blew on way home from garage.

I don't understand why you have paid for anything up front, I don't think that was a good move I'd have left the onus on the garage to fix it properly.dont know how much the small claims court go to, but you paying for the engine wasn't a good move if I'm reading it right.

I wish you the best of luck.

OhGoveUckYourself Fri 14-Mar-14 16:55:56

You mentioned the AA, if you are a member that usually entitles you to legal advice or help in these kind of situations. Check their website and your paperwork to see if they can help.

TalisaMaegyr Fri 14-Mar-14 16:58:22

The reason we paid upfront was because he said he couldn't continue without money upfront confused Is that not standard practice then?

I shall have a look at the AA paperwork over the weekend Gove - not like we can go anywhere!

hoppingmad Fri 14-Mar-14 17:01:22

The garage sounds dodgy. In 2 decades of motoring I have never ordered my own part nor have I paid before the work is done. Most garages charge on collection, mine invoices me because I drive old bangers and they see a lot of me

I would get legal advice and look at taking them to small claims. You will need to see a reputable, independent garage to get an idea of what is going wrong

Shonajoy Fri 14-Mar-14 17:03:39

I've never paid up front. Ever. I'm in Scotland. Is it a proper registered garage or a guy on his own? The other thing is to name shame and bung them on twitter.

But you need to have the conversation first, about who is accountable. I'd advise going on an Audi forum I remember my friend had one a couple of years ago and had an awful time with fuel injectors etc failing. If its a common fault, they may have ideas- turns out my friends problem was common and Audi replaced for free.

I'm sorry I know how horrible it feels.

TalisaMaegyr Fri 14-Mar-14 17:17:53

It's an independent guy on his own. The taxi drivers that I spoke to told me he was cheap and cheerful and good.

Since then, other drivers from the same company have told me he's a nightmare and an alcoholic. Which would explain a lot, including the fact that he doesn't seem to start work until 11:30 in the morning.

TalisaMaegyr Fri 14-Mar-14 17:18:58

Thanks Shona I really appreciate the sympathy. I'm gutted. And horribly, horribly skint.

thesecowsaresmallthosearefaraw Fri 14-Mar-14 17:23:40

Agree with GoveUck - ask the AA if they can help you. I think they can get an independent guy to inspect the car for you.

thesecowsaresmallthosearefaraw Fri 14-Mar-14 17:25:48

OP, a quick google suggests that turbos usually fail because of another problem:

It would be a good idea to have the car looked at by an independent. You might be able to go to the small claims court for a refund.

Shonajoy Fri 14-Mar-14 17:28:48

Was the engine a new or secondhand one? It would be interesting to get car and engine inspected, and see what's happened. My garage guy fitted and paid for a new engine (well one with 10,000 miles on it, mine had had 70,000) and still kept protesting his innocence that he'd done anything Wong in the first place! It wasn't somewhere I'd have gone it was a two man shabby looking garage, and it's been going fine for a year now touch wood. X

specialsubject Fri 14-Mar-14 17:35:19

for now, find a few hundred quid from somewhere/someone and buy a runabout with a long MoT.

and then fire up the big guns!

YellowTulips Fri 14-Mar-14 17:35:46

So as others have posted you should not have had to pay upfront - no reputable garage would have made you do this - especially when you supplied the part. This itself is an indication (but not proof) that something dodgy is going on here.

If you are an AA member I would ask them for advice in the first place.

However, the only real resolution here is to get an independent mechanic to inspect the car and do a report (supplemented by a report from the AA on the original incident).

Then it's a case for the small claims court. For that you need to make sure EVERY communication with the mechanic is in writing. Start by making an official written complaint to him logging exactly what happened.

What's key here is not to throw good money after bad. Do no pay him any more money. Get the car back from him (ask a friend to tow if required).

So sorry this has happened. thanks

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