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What happened.

 

Bought a used P reg BMW 523i March 31/10. Drove it for 3 weeks and on the only Mway trip I took - 24/4/10 (Sheffield and back, about 80 miles) in last couple of miles engine started to overheat. Was home late at night so checked the car in the morning, coolant level OK. Took it for a short drive 7 miles, no problems. However, on way home engine began to O/H again. Went on Bimmerworks (BMW owners site) for info and found that there are issues with thermostat valves and water pumps on older BMs so presumed it was that. Attempted to get hold of garage but they weren't answering phone. Booked the car into an independent for an evaluation of what was wrong but couldn't get in till the end of the week (friday).

 

I'd driven the car 750 miles in total since I bought it. Mostly urban, one Mway trip to Sheffield and back and that was it.

 

I told the independent what I thought was wrong and could they please look at it. Got a call back within an hour to say they hadn't even looked at the problem I thought I had because they had identified a list of faults that made the car, in their opinion (they're also an MOT testing station) 'Dangerous to Drive'. All of the faults were ones I couldn't (I'm a mechanical idiot) or rather a reasonably competent person would not have been able to identify.

 

A further comment was made by the garage was that they couldn't believe how the car had got through it's MOT given that the faults must have been apparent to an MOT examiner at the time I bought it (The car had been MOT'd that day 31/3/10).

 

I managed to get hold of the garage I bought it from on the lunchtime of the day that I took it to the independent garage, although he kept stalling me telling me he wasn't at the garage and that he'd phone me back after 6pm when he'd be able to 'refresh his memory as to who I was and looked at the receipt book'.

 

In the meantime I'd also been on Consumer Direct and spoken to one of their advisors to find out what rights I had - I had memories of garages in the 80's/90's selling cars and then refusing to refund saying you'd driven them, and didn't want to get offered a load of bull, I was begining to realise that this guys knowledge was bluff and bluster, he was stalling and I wouldn't take at face value anything he told me.

 

The offer they made me was £800 for the car in part ex for another one of theirs (I paid £1495) so I said no - I wasn't prepared to take a hit of £700 for driving an unsafe car for three weeks and qouted what Consumer Direct had told me, at this point the guy said that if that was going to be my attitude he'd see me in court and that he didn't see why he should lose money if I accepted his offer his reasoning went we'd both be equally out of pocket - cos he'd be left with a car he couldn't sell that would cost too much to repair!

 

Although I didn't get a qoute for how much the repairs to the car, and other things that needed doing to it that came up during the course of driving it the repairs would have been uneconomic and the garage were not wanting/unwilling to go down that route. Plus I don't think I'd trust them to do it either, becuase at least two of the faults that I'd been driving around with for 24 days were supposed to have been completed for the MOT for the car to have passed.

 

I also pointed out to him (I kept a copy of the trader advert) that the car was advertised as 2 owner when I got the V5C from DVLA (ironically the morning it was condemned - how's that for timing?) I found out I was the 7th, admittedly the last owner had owned it from 2005. I was also told that there was a FSH although at the time they couldn't locate it (Having the FSH also mentioned within the advert) but they would send it on. And lastly there are things mentioned in the advert that don't work (Cruise control) that I only found after I'd driven it on an Mway - who uses CC driving round town? And the airbag warning light appeared around the same time.

 

What have I done to date?

 

First and foremost I've not driven the damn thing. It's sat outside my house after it was towed back from the independent garage.

 

I've sent the rejection letter (recorded Delivery). Along with a copy of the independent report detailing the faults that they found on inspection, which isn't a comprehensive list as it doesn't include CC and airbags and the probable waterpump/thermostat valve as they called off that part of the investigation because the other faults had rendered the car unsafe.

 

The 14 days is now up and I'm now in the process of preparing the second letter threatening them with court action.

 

Does anyone know if there is anything else that I can add into this letter regarding fitness/quality etc. The reaction of the selling garage when I spoke to them was it's a P reg car you should expect these things. Again when I qouted the Consumer Direct people and the info on their website about quality, suitability etc was told: "well if you want to go down that line it's up to you, we'll see you in court".

 

Consumer Direct have been very good in guiding me through this but you guys out there are on the sharp end any help/advice would be greatly appreciated. Particularly insights as to what my chances are at getting my money back through Court? And do I have to get the car to them or do they have to collect it?

 

Thanks

Edited by hcs9jah
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You have a contract under the Sale of Goods Act 1979, as amended by the Sale and Supply of Goods Act 1994 and the Sale and Supply of Goods to Consumers Regulations 2002.

 

Those regulations say that if a fault is discovered within the first six months, then the fault is assumed to have been present at the time of sale.

 

Would you like to list the faults that made the car unroadworthy?

 

The reaction of the selling garage when I spoke to them was it's a P reg car you should expect these things.

 

Obviously you can't expect a car of that age or price to be of top quality, but you can expect that unless it was pointed out to you, that everything works and that it is legal.

Is there an advisory with the MoT certificate?

Edited by Conniff
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Thanks for replying I appreciate it.

 

All my stuff is at work as that's where I've been putting the letters together.

 

I'm on nights so not back at work until 2000 GMT. I'll post what's wrong with it through the night. Whenever you get the chance to review it I'd appreciate your input.

 

There'll be a time lag with me replying to any observations you have but as I say I really do appreciate any advice/input you can give me so I know I've coveded all the bases.

 

Many thanks,

Regards,

John

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Sorry, before I finally go to bed.

 

I knew I was buying a P reg car, and I do appreciate that it isn't going to be showroom condition, but I did expect things to work, and I didn't expect the car to be unroadworthy (sorry - dangerous to drive) within 3 weeks of buying it and only mainly driving in urban conditions; particularly with a 12 month MOT just done - although I believe that this MOT station is run by a cousin of the selling garage and all the garages cars are MOT'd there. I've reported that bit to VOSA although when all these faults came to light I was 2 days outside their reporting guidelines.

 

My family consider me to be a 50 year old very conservative driver - boring as my eldest son usually observes. The assertion that the defects were as the result of my driving - my kids haven't finished laughing yet. To qoute bugs bunny: they don't know you very well do they?

 

Thanks again,

John

Edited by hcs9jah
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The car still needs to be of 'satisfactory quality' (or as used to be merchantable quality).

The lateness of the report to Vosa may not get 'you' any action, but they do take them seriously and do send inspectors. It is always worth reporting, even if late, because when they add the complaint to the database, up will pop any other complaints they have recorded.

 

boring as my eldest son usually observes

So you've got one of those as well :)

 

Will look out for your further posts later this evening.

  • Haha 1
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Could you please post what has been diagnosed as being wrong as it's hard to make a balanced judgement otherwise. In principal I'd agree with Conniff and on the balance of probabilities you have a case but I've seen this many times before.

 

SOGA is a real pain on cheap cars as is the six month ruling but many people forget that the overall spirit of the law clearly states that it depends on age, mileage and price and it I think you will find that it is a balanced opinion of all of these factors that comes into play. Obviously this makes it a very grey area which indeed it is.

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In response to heliosuk.

 

Hi friend, I appreciate the grey areas with buying older cars which I'm currently forced to do for a number of reasons. What I don't appreciate is a garage that says I should have expected it when they've advertised the car as "looks super drives superb" (I still have a copy of the advert) and then were only willing to take the car back at a trade-in value against another one of theirs, which is why he offered £800 against the £1495 I paid him for it. That's why I refused his "generous" offer. I've effectively been driving a death trap. The O/S/R wheel hub could have detached at any time, as a result I 'm now nervous of driving a used car again - because at the back of my mind will be the thought of the death trap I've driven around in for 25 days oblivious to the fact I could have had a serious (possibly fatal) accident as a result of this fault alone. Several of these faults should have been picked up at MOT as they are specifically looked for, so how did it pass? Hence why I will be involving VOSA at some stage. And also what would my insurance position have been if these faults had come to light after an accident? Would the insurers have refused to cough up, true I might not have been around to find that bit out but it's a worry all the same.

 

To Connif and heliosuk.

 

OK this is what was diagnosed as wrong with it. It's not part of a full written report. The garage just identified what they'd uncovered on their cursory inspection before they looked at diagnosing the fault I'd originally taken the car to them for. There could be more that is fundamentally wrong with it as they gave up tagging faults when it was obvious to them that the car was unroadworthy and as appears on their invoice under additional information - "Dangerous to Drive". I should also point out that this garage which specialises in servicing and repairing high end cars (OK stop laughing) is also an MOT testing station.

 

Cooling fan broken, 2 blades missing,

fan cowling broken and not secure,

Both front track rods excessive play,

N/S/F front shocker weak,

Front discs at 16.90mm thick, minimum 20.4mm

Fuel pipe heavily corroded front to rear,

O/S/R top ball arm ball joint loose and hub damaged, large amounts of free play in rear wheel,

Auxillary belt cracked,

CAT collapsed internally and rattling.

 

All of these faults I wouldn't expect even a reasonably competent person to find let alone a mechanical idiot like me.

 

This doesn't include a diagnosis as to why the engine was overheating, although trawling the BMW owners website forums suggests it was either a faulty thermostat valve and/or faulty water pump. But I wasn't aware this was a potential problem with this age of car until I'd trawled the Bimmerworks website. So that would have been another action point on the selling garages "to do" list, plus....

 

Also, reported to the original garage was the fact that the cruise control wasn't working (I discovered that on the Mway trip to Sheffield - the same trip that the Engine O/H occured, and the first time it had been on an extended non-urban run) and the airbag warning light was permanently on after my 6'8" tall younger son moved the seat back to squeeze himself in the car - again reported at the same time as the cruise control and after trawling Bimmerworks website found that this is identified as a potential problem on BM's of any age.

 

I've just checked the track and trace on Royal Mails website and the 1st letter I sent them was "wait left" and they haven't picked it up or asked for redelivery so I'll be getting that back as a "return to sender" in the next couple of days.

 

In the meantime I'm about to start the first draft of letter number 2 (the I'm going to take you to court if you don't respond,. etc.).

 

I do appreciate that what heliosuk was talking about in regard to SOGA and the 6 month fault stuff, in that it can mean that there's a grey area when it comes to dealing with dispute. However, I'm not reporting this after 6 months, I'm reporting all these faults and issues with the car after a month and I'm been met by attitude and bluster from a trader who thinks he can bu****it me into either accepting his terms or giving up. I unfortunately can't afford to take a £700 hit plus whatever he'd extract from me for the replacement car and don't see why I should. Either the legislation means something in terms of it's protection for buyers from businesses or it doesn't. Apologies if I sound like I'm on my soapbox but I find all this consumer advice stuff interesting. Makes me want to read more. In general I'll certainly never meekly accept anything I'm told again by a trader who says that they know my rights and the law better than I do.

 

I should have had alarm bells ringing when the brother (who was a bit of a barrack room lawyer type and I got the impression he was hacked off at his brother for giving a good P/X deal on my old car) of the guy who was selling the car (It's a family business) attempted to tell me (as I was about to drive off) that as a former keeper (of my trade-in) I couldn't claim the RFL back from DVLA because as soon as he sent off the paperwork I no longer owned the car stating: "you might as well give me the tax disc 'cos it's not worth anything to you, I won't make anything out of it but it can be used by the next owner of the vehicle. Better that than just ending up in the governments hands!" This was after his brother had handed me the disc and told me that it hadn't formed part of the trade-in allowance. Guess what? I got the refund for the 10 months left on the disc a fortnight ago.

 

In addition to the above the advert clearly stated that the car was 2 previous owners, when I got the V5C from DVLA I found I was owner number 7. Slight misrepresentation?! They also have failed to supply the advertised FSH as requested - at the time I bought the car they said that the FSH was at the other garage and they would send it on and despite being asked for it by phone and letter I'm still waiting.

 

If I had somewhere where I could stick this death trap (I'm at the stage where I no longer see it as a usable vehicle) on a SORN I would do so. I could then claim back my Road Fund Licence and not lose that whilst I'm pursuing this (It looks like it'll take about another 6 weeks at least before CC are involved in resolving this), but unfortunately that is an expense I may have to bear, So that'll be 3 or 4 months I'll have lost for

 

Sorry if I ended up ranting folks, but I just feel so frustrated and powerless over this and I know it could take a while to sort that it's driving me to distraction. I know people have worse problems and I should have a sense of perpective.

 

Hope the info over the defects that you asked for helps. I'm on nights so there'll be a time lag in my replies to any thoughts and advice you give.

My appreciation again and regards,

John

Edited by hcs9jah
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I know it has nothing to do with anything, but are you an office worker John? that is one of the neatest posts I think I have seen on here.

 

Yes the SOGA can have it's failings, but it is well written and a lot of thought has gone into it. It would seem as if they leave some things up in the air, but some things cannot have a definative instruction attached to them and make sense the more times they are considered.

 

As with the 'taking into consideration age, mileage and price', that is a big part of it, but that would refer more to the general condition and the cosmetic appearance than to it not being fit for it's purpose which is to transport you around in safety.

You couldn't complain about the tyres tread being 1.7mm (or even 1.6mm legal limit) as they comply with regulations, but you wouldn't expect them to be damaged.

 

The carpets being threadbare in places or worn through under the pedals and wear or tears in the upholstery fabric. It's mileage might make it use oil, but it must still meet the exhaust emission regulations. Wheel bearings a bit noisy and ball joint and bushes might all require replacement before it will reach the standards required at the next MoT. but these things and many others shouldn't require doing at the time of purchase, but it can be sold with all sorts of problems as long as those problems are pointed out to you or you could/should have noticed them on examination.

 

It's a big area to go into and I won't list any more, suffice to say that in general the car can be worn or scruffy and have bits missing, but it must be safe and meet all the requirements laid down in consumer regulations ie; fit for purpose.

 

As an aside, the fan having a couple of blades missing is a concern that can be more serious than appears, especially on the wallet. The unbalance can lead to breakup and that can take out the radiator and ac condenser and other parts and cause damage to the body to an extent that the car could be written off. I speak from personal experience here as I have had to give the bad news that the cost of repair far exceeds the value of the car twice, allbeit that was over a period of 40 years, but is something to be aware of.

 

I'll now risk a couple of oxymorons

 

Cooling fan broken, 2 blades missing, Cosmetic

fan cowling broken and not secure, Cosmetic

Both front track rods excessive play, Is it enough to fail?

N/S/F front shocker weak, is it enough to fail?

Front discs at 16.90mm thick, minimum 20.4mm Not an immediate danger but thickness less than BMW recommends.

Fuel pipe heavily corroded front to rear, Could pose serious fire risk

O/S/R top ball arm ball joint loose and hub damaged, needs to be seen to assess

large amounts of free play in rear wheel, But is it excessive?

Auxillary belt cracked, Type of thing expected for it's age. I wouldn't class as claimable.

CAT collapsed internally and rattling. Is that a certainty or could it be a heat sheild. Will this in itself cause it fail an emissions test?

 

 

The problems that the specialist has reported must be taken with a pinch of salt, allbeit a small pinch. Were they examined to MoT standard, probably or I don't think they would have highlighted the car being dangerous.

 

As your letter has been undeliverable, you would be wise to take another copy and give it to them personally. Ensure there is a time limit on a response ie; 7 days, have someone in the background witness you doing it.

 

Until they have received your rejection letter, it would be unfair to slap a Letter Before Action on them.

 

Do you like and want the car? All the things listed are repairable and at not too great an expense and there isn't a massive amount of problems either, so you could get them to repair that instead as you are pushing the bounds of 'reasonable time'.

I do feel that offering you 50% of what you paid in such a short time is in your favour, but you should have a witness to this or preferably in black and white.

Reword your letter so that this offer would be included in a response letter. Be reasonable with them and don't show anger, but make sure it is authoritive. Also mention that 'you have taken advice' but not what advice.

 

Over

 

It's breakfast time now so must off.

Edited by Conniff
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I've just been looking up known problems and you might want to take particular notice of:

 

Problem

 

Engine Overheating

 

Cause

 

Coolant loss from cylinder head in area of No1 cylinder, exhaust side

Cylinder head has hairline cracks

 

If you have this fault then it could prove really costly and not worth doing.

Edited by Conniff
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Hi Coniff,

Was going to go straight to bed but I found my wife had left instruction that I had to go to the post office this morning to post some letters/packets, so I thought I'd have a quick look on the forum before I toddled off to the land of Nod.

 

No I'm not an office worker, I'm a psychiatric nurse in a secure unit.

 

The phrase that the garage I took it too used was that the unsecured OSR spring had (maybe over time) caused damage to the rear wheel to the point that it was likely that the wheel could drop off. They admitted that the points they uncovered were only on a cursory check and not a full examination but were absolute in their opinion that the car was dangerous to drive and that I shouldn't even attempt to drive it the 3 miles home.

 

When I've done the weekly checks, and also checked the car after the overheat there was no variation in coolant level. And all other weekly check fluid levels were within normal limits.

 

The garage who did the assessment said that they would be looking at £1500 - £2000 to do the work that they'd identified (parts and labour). As I said I'm a mechanical idiot so I don't know if they were over egging the estimate or not. Given that they knew that they wouldn't have any part in the repairs I'd think not.

 

I'm not confident about this car anymore. And I wouldn't be confident that the selling garage would repair the car to a competent standard, given they admitted that the OSR spring was the fault of the garage they'd used to fit the spring to get it through it's MOT. They also stated in the conversation I had with them when they offered me £800 that there was so much that I'd reported wrong with this car they would not offer repair but a replacement with the proviso that I only accepted £800 as a trade-in against another of their cars. I wasn't prepared to do that given I'd only had the thing a month.

 

I'm also concerned that the car was misrepresented in their advertising of it: i.e. 2 owners when there had been 6, they've lied about having the FSH and the fact that things that came to light on the car not working weren't pointed out to me. no faults were ever pointed out to me. If I'd been aware of just the ownership and the lack of service history I'd have run a mile.

 

I'd sooner take my chance at CC. I appreciate that it would be my word against theirs in court but I'm past caring.

 

Thanks again for your help.

Regards,

John

Edited by hcs9jah
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Oh yeah before I forget. The way this garage operates it's by appointment otherwise the location I bought the car at isn't generally open, even though there may be somebody inside.

 

Given their attitude I doubt, although I admit I don't know, that I would have little to no chance in delivering the rejection letter personally.

 

I will try one more time via R/D to get the rejection letter to them with a seven day limit this time, but if that fails for whatever reason then I'll write the letter that tells them that's it. I think that I'll have shown that I've made reasonable attempts to communicate with them. I don't really know what else I can do?

 

I estimate that by the time I've done all that it'll be mid June and although I don't have any idea what timescales that the CC uses it'll be possibly be the end of August before CC has served the paperwork and then maybe another month to 6 weeks before we get to see each other in combat.

 

Oh well, c'est la vie. I'll not make this mistake again, famous last words.

 

Regards,

John

Edited by hcs9jah
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Are they a Ltd company? if so then they have to have a head office which would be the place to post it. If not, and they sound like a bunch of cowboys, can you post it yourself ? It would be nice to think they actually received your letter and was aware of what your intentions were.

 

I'm a psychiatric nurse in a secure unit.
I hope that means your a nurse treating psychiatric patients. :)
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Cooling fan broken, 2 blades missing, Cosmetic Yes but also it's on the end of a viscous coupling so air flow through rad not as designed and fault op has is consistent with this. Further it leads to an imbalance which wears the pump shaft. This in itself is possibly plastic so needs further investigation.

fan cowling broken and not secure, Cosmetic And effects air throughput. Might seem insignificant but in certain markets you have to reposition all sorts of things such as a 25mm plate covering a sensor can lead to significant engine temperature rises believe it or not . So a full cowl on this particular engine is important.

Both front track rods excessive play, Is it enough to fail? And possibly expected at this age and mileage but should be designed ( which I know they are, as a fail safe i.e. they can't come apart and if they get that bad then you'll be nursing the driver. The car will be shifting all over the place

N/S/F front shocker weak, is it enough to fail? Agreed. Test is 1.5 times jounce and not leaking.

Front discs at 16.90mm thick, minimum 20.4mm Not an immediate danger but thickness less than BMW recommends. 20.4mm is minimum and allows another set of pads. Provided pads linnings are above 1.5mm but seriously recommend changing when due. In fact you've got to.

Fuel pipe heavily corroded front to rear, Could pose serious fire risk Debatable though I very much doubt it unless the car has a history of being paked on a seafront or near to it.

O/S/R top ball arm ball joint loose and hub damaged, needs to be seen to assess. Agreed.

large amounts of free play in rear wheel, But is it excessive? But where? and doubtful. Which direction as in coordinate x this is designed to a certain extent. Anything in Y or Z is not acceptable but you'd hear it clonking.

Auxillary belt cracked, Type of thing expected for it's age. I wouldn't class as claimable.Agreed

CAT collapsed internally and rattling. Is that a certainty or could it be a heat sheild. Will this in itself cause it fail an emissions test? might just be loose and as suggested is not a failure provided it meets emission regs.

 

 

The problems that the specialist has reported must be taken with a pinch of salt, allbeit a small pinch. Were they examined to MoT standard, probably or I don't think they would have highlighted the car being dangerous.

 

As your letter has been undeliverable, you would be wise to take another copy and give it to them personally. Ensure there is a time limit on a response ie; 7 days, have someone in the background witness you doing it.

 

Until they have received your rejection letter, it would be unfair to slap a Letter Before Action on them.

 

Do you like and want the car? All the things listed are repairable and at not too great an expense and there isn't a massive amount of problems either, so you could get them to repair that instead as you are pushing the bounds of 'reasonable time'.

I do feel that offering you 50% of what you paid in such a short time is in your favour, but you should have a witness to this or preferably in black and white.

Reword your letter so that this offer would be included in a response letter. Be reasonable with them and don't show anger, but make sure it is authoritive. Also mention that 'you have taken advice' but not what advice.

 

Over

 

It's breakfast time now so must off.

See comments in green and the rest I agree with Conniff. So you can see it's a very grey area.

 

I believe the fault connif quoted as regards to No1 cylinder applies to an earlier version of yours. Wheres the OSR spring issue come from.?

 

If you want to back the car then I think the only thing you have solid ground on at the moment is the number of owners it has to that as advertised.

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I didn't mean 'cosmetic' as in pretty. I know what happens when a viscous coupled fan goes for walkies. Fuel pipe is a 'could' but I would make it a point to emphasise the danger. I am trying to think the best thing to push for. Maybe you should get an estimate to put it all in order and if that outweighs the value of the car then it's obvious.

 

I don't think I would take too much nonsense from them and certainly mention that the next communication will be through the courts.

 

They sounds like a buy at auction, quick polish and make a quick buck outfit, lapping up the stuff that real traders don't want.

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Hi guys,

Thanks for replying.

 

To Coniff.

The answer to your question is at times it feels like both in that if I didn't work here I'd be a patient here :-D. This is the first time I've sat down in 6 hours and had a moment to think since I started tonight. I'm on a break at the moment to gather what wits I have left and to plan out what I'm doing for the rest of the night. So I thought I'd check what replies I'd got.

 

Back to business.

 

They advertise themselves as a limited company on their website. So it's worth checking I suppose and chucking a letter in that direction. I'll check with OFT as they might be able to help on that score.

 

If it's such a grey area then why all the details in SOGA and on OFT website? I appreciate what you're saying but the legislation seems pretty clear, although my experience of working with legislation a.k.a. The Mental Health Act, I'm only too aware of the diversity of opinion and interpretation and application of legislation even with case law to back it up.

 

I bought from the low end of their business - I have little choice at the minute. All the high end £25000+ cars are held at another site. I'll see if I can get that site located. I had thought about that previously but thought that any letters had to go to where the purchase was made. Should have thought a bit more about it.

 

The OSR spring was one of the requirements for the car to get through it's MOT as the original was ?cracked. On fitting the new spring they apparently hadn't bolted it in or secured it and it was this that was causing the damage. I'd actually bought the car between it being tested and the retest. The seller minimised the impact of the OSR spring replacement by stating that the only problems they knew the car had were being put right. The only other issues on the MOT and problems that were identified to me were a split rubber boot which was replaced and a tyre. Otherwise everything in the garden was lovely.

 

Given that I'm running round like a running round thing here at the moment I may not get another chance tonight to post. And when I get home in the morning I'm definately hitting the mattress straight away.

 

Thanks again,

John

Edited by hcs9jah
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If they are a limited company then do a check through Companies House webcheck service - this will give you their registered office address (they are obliged to have this for service of legal documents) - for £1 you can download details of the directors, which may be useful if your rejection letter doesn't get to their office.

 

In these situations it's sometimes useful to check other aspects of a business - ICO registration, consumer credit licence if they offer credit, and so on. Being in a position to focus unwelcome attention on rogue dealers may be handy.

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All you need has been said by SP. It would be a good idea to check if they do credit if they hold a license.

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Hi folks,

Sorry, I've had another one of those nights. I'm getting far too old for this job. Roll on 50, 12 months to go!

 

Thanks again for replying.

 

I actually contacted them by phone again and spoke with them about this. They feel that it wouldn't be worthwhile repairing given the number of faults so have dismissed this as an option, which makes me suspcious that they knew about them and were probably hoping the car would last to the point where we are in a really grey area. Cowboys indeed, now I know why one of the brothers called the other Tex.

 

They remain insistent they will only accept the car back as a trade-in against one of their other cars only if I accept a trade-in value of £800 and they will not budge. They are whining (literally) that this car represnts a loss to them and why should they bear it. When I argued that the car wasn't mechanically of merchantable quality, was misrepresented in the advert and I felt that it was unfair that I should lose £700 the repsonse I got was: "see you in court then, you won't get anything'. I appreciate that it's my word against theirs in that case and wouldn't use what is essentially a hearsay argument against them anyway. I just hope they're arrogant enough to say it that way in court.

 

I could travel to the garage, but feel that this would be unproductive given their attitude on the phone as well as taking half a day (30mins in a car - that works - 3 1/2 hours on public transport!). Even with witnesses, I presume that the witnesses would have to be independent otherwise the accusation of lack of impartiality could be used in their defence.

 

When I get chance I'll also have a look at ScarletPimpernel's (Who I noticed is flying the fleet battle flag of the Knights' Templar) suggestion and look at the companies webpage and see if I can chase it down from that end.

 

I've a friend who's also lent me secure garage space and will get the car flatbedded there so I can SORN this death trap and at least not lose money on the RFL.

 

So I think what I will do is I will send a letter with the 7 day deadline; I'll then follow this up with a 14 day 'last chance to settle before court' letter and then go for broke with CC action if there's no result from any of that. Given the tight deadlines in terms of prosecuting this I'll need to move swiftly, I'll also pad out the 'last chance saloon' letter with SOGA and anything else from case law that I can find. I suppose I could get a solicitor to phone them and try to negotiate but I don't think that would be cost effective even though I've got legal representation through my union. Mind you there's a thought wouldn't the legal protection I have through my car insurance also cover this. Given that if I didn't have bad luck, I'd have no luck at all, probably not is the answer.

 

Although this is a personal pain, it's also very interesting and whilst a steep learning curve in terms of consumer rights issues been worthwhile. I've spoken to some good people who are prepared to lend their tw'pen'th and expertise in helping people through the maze to the extent I've been telling people at work about the site and how user friendly it is and encouraging them to contribute if they get advice that helps them to resolve issues, as well to keep the site funded and going.

 

I just wish it had been something smaller, easier to replace and less useful that went wrong, like a Disney beanie or a pair of socks but i never do things by halves in for a penny in for a thousand.

 

Doubt if I'll get chance to post again tonight, break over.

 

Another morning where I'll be throwing myself in bed as soon as I get home and showered.

 

Thanks again folks,

My regards,

John :)

Edited by hcs9jah
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