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second hand car unroadworthy


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Hi there,this is my first post so if i do anything wrong please forgive me.

 

I purchased a used audi a4 for £1800 from a dealer on 24/10/14 and i've done approx 250 miles in it,i paid £300 cash and part exed my vectra,two weeks later the water pump failed,i took it to a local mechanic as i didn't think it was worth going back to the dealer for,just over a week after that the coolant light came on,i refilled it and checked it periodically and noticed the coolant in the tank was staying cold even when the engine was up to temp,it was suggested to me that this could be a head gasket fault,so i contacted the dealer and he said he'd take a look,he did so and told me that it was just an air lock,i drove 5 miles from the dealers and the engine management light came on,i rang the dealer and told him,his reply was 'next time you're passing through bring it in and we'll switch it off for you' as you can imagine i was very unsatisfied,so i decided to take it to an audi main dealer and have a full check over,they told me in no uncertain terms that the vehicle is unroadworthy and did a complete report,should i contact the dealer first or the CAB,or should i just reject the car? i'm quite happy to show a list of faults if anybody wishes to see them.

sorry for the long winded post.

 

Stan.

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Please will you post the list in full so that we can have a look.

 

I can't imagine that unheated coolant in the header tank would indicate a head gasket problem. A leaking head gasket would normally lead to very serious overheating of the coolant and of the engine.

 

You have had the car for about six weeks. I think that you need to contact the supplier urgently with a letter enclosing copy of the list of faults and also formally rejecting the car. Even if later on you decide not to reject it, at least you have communicated the problem to him and also your intention as quickly as possible.

 

By all means contact the CAB – although I don't know what you think that they might say to you or advise you. Frankly you will be better off here because you are likely to get advice which is a bit more "in-your-face" and this is the style that you need to use when dealing with most second-hand car dealers.

 

Go and see the CAB anyway and you can compare the advice you get.

 

Send the letter I have suggested to the dealer and see what he says. At the same time you should go to an independent repairer and get a quote for the repairs so that you know what kind of value you're talking about.

 

Which dealer did you buy it from? You may as well let us know here.

 

We can give you more advice when we see the list of faults – but you will probably end up having to threaten a legal action. If you did bring a County Court claim then your chances of success are extremely high – on the basis of what you say, better than 90%.

 

Is the car dealer an established car dealer with a permanent premises? Or is he likely to be hard to track down if you get a judgement?

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Thanks for replying,it turns out the head gasket is fine,i'll write a complete list of faults exactly as audi wrote them,they also did a breakdown of prices and quoted me a repair bill of £2832.31,should i call the dealer or just email them? they are holly tree car and commercial in nuneaton.

fault list as follows.

 

1) EML on-several faults logged,EGR valve malfunction,camshaft adjustment valve malfunction,unmetered air downstream of air mass meter possibly due to EGR fault.

2) Washers-front inoperable on near side.

3) Number plate light rear near side cracked,off side dim in operation will require complete new unit due to corrosion.

4) Carried out cylinder leakage test and compression check confirmed all ok,however having ran vehicle to temperature the radiator is not getting hot,it appears the thermostat is not opening correctly or the radiator is blocked.

5) Discs front corroded in inner brake surface.

6) Brake hose worn/damaged both front flexi hoses are cracked to inner core,rear hoses are starting to perish.

7) Rear anti roll bar corroded around mounting points,bush stop on off side has moved along anti roll bar.

8) Oil leak from gearbox selector shaft oil seal,leaking on to the central gearbox rubber mounting.

9) Brake fluid overdue.

10) All 4 alloy wheels buckled.

11) Off side drop link play,near side drop link play.

12) Rear left and right hand indicator bulbs showing white light.

13) Fault logged with passenger side airbag ignitor.

14) Drivers door lock fault,central locking actuator.

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Is this the company - http://www.physicallocation.com/v/53d441cb357509d57a8e6825/Holly-Tree-Trade-Sales/#lat=52.514073&lng=-1.447430 ??

 

Well it is clear from that list that there are several serious defects and that the vehicle must be unroadworthy.

 

It is an offence to sell a vehicle which is unroadworthy. It is contrary to the road traffic act 1988.

 

I suggest that you print out the documents you will find if you click on the two links below.

 

http://www.tradingstandards.gov.uk/extra/news-item.cfm/newsid/1572

 

http://www.adviceguide.org.uk/scotland/consumer_s/consumer_cars_and_other_vehicles_e/consumer_problems_with_the_car_you_bought_e/the_car_you_bought_is_not_roadworthy.htm

 

 

Tell the seller that you want to reject the car and that it is unroadworthy and that he could be prosecuted by trading standards. I suggest that you do report this to the CAB because they will log it and they should reported to trading standards. Check with them that they are going to do this.

 

Explain to the dealer how serious this is and how he will be wise to accept the return of the car without causing any problems as otherwise you will sue him the County Court and also you will make sure that the police know and also trading standards.

 

By all means call him – but it would be best if you record the call. You really should record calls every time you make any kind of telephone call to any business and especially where you are going to be in conflict.

 

Whatever you say on the phone and whatever he says on the phone log it and make a detailed note afterwards about the contents of the conversation and then send him a letter confirming what was said. However this should be in addition to recording the call.

 

After that, do everything in writing. Do nothing on the phone. I would suggest that you don't get involved in allowing him to repair the car. You won't be able to trust the work and you have no idea when it will be done. That is simply the road to misery. We have lots of experience of car dealers wanting to do the repairs themselves on this forum.

 

The final thing to say to you is that because you are rejecting the car, you must stop driving it. Furthermore, because of the condition of it, you are breaking the law and also your insurance will be invalid. I would suggest that you get the car back to the dealer and leave it there. Inform the DVLA that you no longer own the car and the dealer is now the owner. When you deliver the car take photographs of it just a case are any questions about any subsequent damage. Leave a clear note with the car that you have returned it and that you are cancelling your ownership with the DVLA. When you cancel the ownership send copies of any documents you sent to the DVLA to the dealer. The whole idea here is to leave a clear paper trail so the dealer can never claim that he did not know what he was not informed.

 

Do not get involved in any protracted dialogue on this. You want your money back within 14 days. Be prepared to sue in the County Court. Tell the dealer straightaway in writing that you are beginning the 14 day pre-action protocol for starting a County Court claim and at the end of the 14 days if you don't have your money you will sue him for the money plus interest plus any expenses you have been put to.

 

If you're not prepared to go ahead with this and sue then don't bother to make the threats but then you may as well look out for the long haul. If you're really lucky, he will be a decent dealer and he will sort you out quickly – but this tends to be unusual.

 

Let us know what happens. If you want a hand drafting any documents then we can help you. Spend the 14 days reading the areas on this form which show you how to bring a County Court claim. It is very easy and fairly quick.

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Yes that's the company in your link Bankfodder,The guy i spoke to at audi said it was unroadworthy and he'd never have let anyone he knew drive it.

I'll go to the CAB in the morning,do you think they might ring the dealer on my behalf and explain things and request a refund? i'm pretty useless at telephone conversations to be honest.

I'm not sure whether i needed to or not but i saved the ebay link for it just incase.

Thank you both very much for all of the info.

 

Stan.

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Hi there,just an update.

I rang the dealer today and recorded the call (can try to upload if anyone wants to listen) he basically accused audi of lying,told me i cant expect a 10 year old car to be brand new,refused to give me a refund and said he'd done nothing wrong so it's no skin off his nose if i involve trading standards and take him to court.

I then went to CAB and they advised me to write to him and reject the car and to ring trading standards.

I'm not quite sure how to word such a letter and what information i should include so any help would be appreciated.

 

Thanks.

 

Stan.

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Hi Stan

 

Amend the following template, add the Ref Number that CAB gave you, on the letter add the following:-

 

CAB/TRADING STANDARDS REF NO:-XXXXXXXXXXXXXX

 

Send it Recorded Delivery.

 

http://www.which.co.uk/consumer-rights/action/letter-rejecting-a-second-hand-car-bought-from-a-dealer

 

 

Hi there,just an update.

I rang the dealer today and recorded the call (can try to upload if anyone wants to listen) he basically accused audi of lying,told me i cant expect a 10 year old car to be brand new,refused to give me a refund and said he'd done nothing wrong so it's no skin off his nose if i involve trading standards and take him to court.

I then went to CAB and they advised me to write to him and reject the car and to ring trading standards.

I'm not quite sure how to word such a letter and what information i should include so any help would be appreciated.

 

Thanks.

 

Stan.

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I rang trading standards today,first chance i've had due to work,they advised me the same as bankfodder,to send them a letter detailing the faults and requesting a refund.

Could anyone please explain the procedure of rejecting the vehicle,do i take it to the dealer and hand over the key,telling him i'm rejecting it,or do i keep it at my home and send him a letter rejecting it? Also,how do i get my money back if it goes to court and i win?

 

Thanks.

 

Stan.

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