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Advice on ongoing vehicle problems.


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Hi,

I am new to this site and looked for similar threads but noting the same. I am hoping that someone on here may be able to give some advice regarding a problem with a faulty tractor. Its not a car but I assume any consumer rights would be the same with most vehicles.

 

We purchased a new tractor with a loader in 2007, when delivered we commented that the clutch pedal didn't feel right and it was adjusted at the first service, we were told it would improve with time. As time went on it slowly got worse to the stage that the tractor wasn't fit to use, the clutch pedal got so hard that we had to stand out of the seat to press the pedal. Under warranty the dealer came and fitted a new clutch cable which didn't improve so they then fitted a new clutch which involves splitting the tractor in 2. This was better but after quite a few months it became harder to press and unusable again so they collected it to fit a second new clutch and cable. The tractor is now back to the same again and comparing to similar machines it is far harder than it should be.

 

The dealer have been good about it and said that they will stand by it but we just don't seem to be getting anywhere. I thought I would get some opinions as to what options we should have now. The tractor is over 2 years old but it is an ongoing issue and after all this time still can't be sorted. It has only now turned 500 hours which is very low, it looks totally as new as everything we have is looked after. What should our demands be at this stage???

 

Any advice would be much appreciated.

 

James

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Thanks for the informative link.

 

Would this still be the case now that it is over 2 years old, bearing in mind that the problem has been there since new?

Thinking that should be able to say we want replacement and pay a fair amount for the use that we have had out of it.

 

James

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Hi,

It is a new holland tractor and we have already compared it to others:

1) another of the same age and model at the dealers, much lighter and easy to use.

2) a newer model of the same range, again much lighter.

3) a case tractor which is the same but with different badges, you guessed it perfectly ok.

4) our other tractors and opinions of other farmers who say that they wouldn't be able to work for long with it.

 

As far as I know the dealer have been getting advice from new holland but I do not know what their exact thoughts are.

 

This has gone on for far to long and we just don't have any faith in any future attempts to repair. We have an old Y reg (1983) tractor which is still going strong so should expect a lot more of a new one.

 

Cheers

James

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can i ask if you don't mind answering, how much you paid for the tractor, and did you pay cash or was it on a hire purchase agreement?

 

for it to be coming up to it's third clutch replacement in just over two years , to me in my opinion shows that there is an inherent fault with it and by replacing the clutch and cable every time this happens is not curing it.

 

i would mention to the dealer your in the opinion of now wanting to reject the tractor and pay a fair amount both of you can agree on for the use you have had from it , and that you no longer have any faith left that the problem will be rectified, and suggest wanting a replacement. i would mention all that to see what their response will be , i don't know how much tractors cost but they can't be cheap, and if they value your custom they might be extremely helpful towards you, "tread the water "so to speak, it will give you an idea on which options you will be left with.

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Thanks again for all the advice above:)

 

heliosuk - it is a clutch cable, the dealer have suggested that they could fit a hydraulic clutch but I would be afraid that this is just covering up a problem as it doesn't seem to be with the clutch or cable.

 

MegaCraggy - It cost somewhere like 22,000 but with a loader which we would keep and put on another. It was paid for with with part trade-in and the rest financed by ourselves. You have suggested what I was thinking with paying a fair amount to get back to new. Will give them a ring later and see what the response is.

 

Cheers

James

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Contacted the dealer today and the service manager said they would not take the tractor back but will get the salesman to come out and look at it next week.

 

Today we have tested it and it takes 90lb - 41kg to press the pedal down, compared to 49lb - 22kg for a very similar tractor of the same make and design with the same setup.

 

What would our legal rights be? Hopefully the salesman that sold it to us will be more helpful.

 

James

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Contacted the dealer today and the service manager said they would not take the tractor back but will get the salesman to come out and look at it next week.

 

Today we have tested it and it takes 90lb - 41kg to press the pedal down, compared to 49lb - 22kg for a very similar tractor of the same make and design with the same setup.

 

What would our legal rights be? Hopefully the salesman that sold it to us will be more helpful.

 

James

 

Hi James,

You need to be very careful with comparrisons and the only real way to do this is with a like for like test of similar age and hours run. The design might look identical but the engineering could be completely different. It's a bit like for want of a better example, comparing the same year and engined Mondeo with a Dual Mass Fly wheel with the same car that has a traditional set up.

 

The legalities that people are commenting on, whilst usefull, might not apply in your case as the various acts that cover consumers don't always cover items used on a commercial basis which I believe your case may fall under.

 

The next thing that puzzles me is why the dealer has not sought advice from the tech support dept in Basildon. One thing I do know is that if the clutch has been replaced 3 times under warranty, this would have sounded alarm bells. Have you contacted them for a start?

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I do understand about the comparisons but the tractor it has been compared to is the same setup, even that aside the pedal is far too hard to use. Hopefully we will get somewhere next week with the salesman.

 

Haven't contacted tech support but will do if we don't get anywhere next week.

 

Cheers

James

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James,

 

You need to log this issue with the tech department asap. The salesman aint going to do any favours for you. Log it with the manufactuer in Basildon and take it from there. What's the salesman going to do apart from get you to buy another with a reduced trade in because it's now used. And who's to say it won't be the same?

 

Seriously, take it up with Basildon. Forget the dealer now for a bit.

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i understand your point heliosuk regarding him being a consumer or a business, he needs to look at the agreement or contract he signed at the time off buying and see what their exclusion clauses are, even then he might have some redress because of the unfair contracts terms act, "excluding liability for defective or poor-quality goods is also permitted only if it is reasonable", while the uct act does not define what is reasonable the courts might.

he states that this problem has been there since they bought it , had 2 clutch replacements with the third on the way , and only done 500 hours.

what reasonable hours should he have been looking at if this problem was not occuring?

if i were him i would seek legal advice on this, because like you have stated it could be defined as a business purchase, but in my opinion i would seriously consider suing for damages, he has been very reasonable by letting 2 clutches be replaced in the hope it would fix it, he knows fitting a 3rd will do the same thing, and they have suggested fitting a Hydraulic clutch, you have to ask why, do they actually know this would fix it, because if all the other tractors of the same make and model have a clutch cable without any problems, then you have to ask ,why should he let them fit a hydraulic one ? and six months down the line it comes back again.

it's a good idea to get in touch with the Manufacturer and hopefully they might help, but if not i would feel his only option would be to sue for damages , and 22,000 is alot of money and he deserves better than what he has had at this present time.

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With respect megga, it seems to me that you are either a pub lawyer or a pub engineer.

 

Your last post is flawed in that it was me who questioned the hydraulic clutch situation and this was posted to get a technical perspective on the case.

 

What I do know, and this is from experience, not just on these forums but again form experience in having to investigate and mediate in issues such as this is it is not always clear cut. On the balance of probabilities there is a problem with the clutch assembly but having said that we don't know the use. There are many reasons why it could be wrong but there are many reasons as to why it might occur.

 

For example, and stating my opinion at this moment in time, it's like a haulier buying a truck to do drop offs on a day to day basis and then expecting the vehicle to do international runs and coming back with a claim for poor fuel consumption.

 

Now I'm not saying this is the case but what I do know as an engineer involved in these said issues is that if the manufactuer is aware of this then they would be homing in on it and it this that I don't understand.

 

There is something in this post that does not make sense to me at the moment and whilst what you say is true that there MIGHT be recourse under law, this is very different as is a commercial vehicle as opposed to the usual road vehicles we deal with.

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i am neither a lawyer or an engineer, but i am a person who went into a court of law against a team of solicitors and won hands down , who thought that because i had little understanding of law presumed i was of a lower Intellect than them and i am surprised that a man like yourself who is clearly educated would make comments like that.

 

i was not questioning you on the subject of the hydraulics , it was my own personal thoughts on the matter.

 

At the end of the day if he cannot get any satisfaction from the manufacturer or salesperson , he should seek legal advice, because whether it's consumer, business, commercial, everybody has statutory rights under the sale of goods act, it does not matter if it is a tractor or a pen , if he can prove that there was an inherent fault with this at the time off purchase and because off the time scale he will have to do so , then his only option might be the courts.

 

and you are correct that his rights will be different , but he still does have them rights, it's the law.

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Mega, I certainly did not mean to offend you and you should be congratulated for your achievements. If I have then you have my sincere apologies. You are bang on in that the OP does have legal rights and the right to redress/remedy.

 

However what is odd here is that we have had 3 cluch assemby changes under warranty and the manufactuer hasn't questioned it.

 

Personnaly I think the op has to move this on from the dealer to the manufactuer and there is no evidence to support any of this which is odd.

 

As an employee of a manufactuer I can guarantee they would be on this particular case just by picking up the warranty data coming through, so it seems odd that this hasn't happened.

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I too think that the manufacturer should have been involved by now. I will see what they have to say on tuesday and go from there.

Could I now say that I have no faith in future repairs and want to exchange for another? (paying for the use of course). This is our only loader tractor and last year right in the middle of harvest the tractor became unsafe to use, luckily another dealer selling a different make actually lent us a tractor. I wouldn't want this to happen again in 6 months time, and now after all this time I have totally no faith left in the thing.

Yesterday we got someone else to try it and they said they wouldn't be able to use it, at this point we don't have a choice because it is required to feed and clean out animals.

Thanks for all your advice and opinions I will keep you updated.

 

James

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you certainly do not have to apologize, i can see how my post could have looked like it was questioning you, and that was not my intention, i do enjoy reading your posts because it is apparent that you are a very Knowledgeable and articulate person.

i see the point you are now making regarding the Manufacturer, whereas i did not before. i certainly hope he can get some redress from them and avoid the expense and time of taking the matter to court.

as you stated the law is defined differently for consumers and business/commercial.

court cases can be a nerve wracking experience , and my case revolved around a firm of solicitors who were Incompetent regarding a legal matter that they were handling for me, and i had to take them to court to prove that they had been, and what i learned that day is , it was not how i came across but that i proved my case, i spent many days and nights pouring over documents and legal letters, and with sheer determination anything is possible, and sometimes you think "am i doing the right thing" but you have to be strong and believe in yourself, and in this day and age too many people get ripped off and conned and i find it unjust, people like james and thousands of others pay out so much money on items, and then have a mountain to climb trying to get any redress back.

so i am hoping that he succeeds on this matter and gets some redress from the manufacturer and if not , then he must consider his options of going to court.

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Not forgotten the update - need to wait till tuesday now to see what they are prepared to do, they have admitted that there is a problem with the tractor and they don't know what else can be done to fix it so hopefully can all be sorted soon. I will update soon.

 

James

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Dealer has only come up with a stupid offer to trade the tractor back in against a new one but going on their values they are saying it has depreciated by £9,000 for just 500 hours use. Rejected this and contacted new holland who said they would sort it and contact dealer. That was over 3 days ago now and still not been contacted back by either. I am willing to pay a fair amount but they are not allowing anything to compensate for the trouble we have had, we wouldn't be looking to trade in and take dig hit on depreciation if there wasn't a fault.

 

Where should this be taken from here? Not sure now what the next step would be. They have agreed there is a fault they cannot fix but won't come up with a solution.

 

Any help would be much appreciated.

 

 

James

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Hi James,

 

I can seriously appreciate the concern you have over this. To a certain extent I can't understand why this has not been picked up earlier by New Holland. The fact that NH are now aware and looking into it is very significant. The delay is not unusual and could be more but you need to chase with a nice mannered call to find the progress.

 

What they will be looking at is the warranty data and analysing first. It can get very complex but if done properly will highlight issues that might not be apparent.

 

The dealer response is to be expected and I have some issues with why they have not reported it in earlier to NH.

 

Keep on them with a call every working day to see the progress.

 

The issue can be fixed but unless the dealer helps them it does not help you.

 

I can also assure you that NH will take the case seriously as they are very aware of the legal implications as regards commercial vehicles, which a tractor comes under, unlike general cars.

 

Give it a few more days but would reitterate keep on their case.

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Thanks for your reply.

The dealer has assured us that it will be sorted but it does seem to be taking a long time. To be honest it has got to the stage that we no longer want it to be fixed, we want a replacement (paying a fair amount) or a refund. We purchased a brand new tractor and have had nothing but trouble and hastle, it has been "fixed" many times before and has still let us down, we have not faith left in it. The thought would always be there that it could always go wrong again in the future and let us down. I had to use it earlier for about 1/2 an hour and it made my knee ache.

Is it fair to expect this?

 

James

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A replacement will not happen I'm sure of that and a refund that fits in financially is very unrealistic. Now that NH are aware I would say any further fix would be permanent. There is a possibility of a manufacturer buy back which is slightly different to that of dealing with the dealer. I'd keep on at NH for a permanent fix to the issue. If dealt with correctly, they might even send a loan one whilst they take yours away to investigate.

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The tractor certainly cannot be taken away without a replacement as it is our only means of moving large bales and feeding our cattle, without a loader tractor we are stuffed, when it was unsafe to use in the past we had to be lent a tractor by another dealer.

 

Other dealers are offering far better deals on the same new holland tractor, we are not asking for them to give anything away or give a huge discount, all we want is for them to be more realistic with their prices and for new holland to help out as a gesture. We have had new hollands in the past and would continue to purchase if this issue is resolved, surely they wouldn't want to get a bad name and lose custom over a small amount???

 

If it wasn't for the problems we could trade in for a new one at another dealer at a far better price, but they wouldn't want it as it is.

 

James

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  • 4 weeks later...

Well, we gave in and allowed the dealer 1 final chance to sort it with new holland involved. They have lent us a tractor but now over 2 weeks later its still not fixed. They have said there is a new clutch they can fit but we were told that last time. I guess we will just have to wait now.

 

Thanks again for all the advice given.

 

James

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