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Ford Evans Halshaw dealership refusing to cover vehicle with warranty **WON 100% covered**

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Really need some advice on the best course of action here, here's a summary of what's happened.

 

Taking it from the start:

 

I bought my vehicle back in April, a Ford Fiesta, 14 reg.

It is covered by the manufacturer's warranty (3 years / 60,000 miles),

it's just over 2 years old now and has around 40,000 miles clocked.

 

I am the 2nd owner of the vehicle, having purchased it from a Ford Evans Halshaw dealership.

 

The vehicle was serviced at that same dealership in August, with everything stated as being in good condition.

 

2 weeks ago now,

travelling down the A1,

the car broke down,

with the engine refusing to start,

 

 

I had to be recovered from the hard shoulder,

and the AA quickly identified no fix could be done at that point,

there is no compression when attempting to start the engine, and the drive belt had gone.

 

 

The vehicle was taken into a ford garage near home.

This is a different dealership to the Evans Halshaw I purchased the vehicle from, but is an official ford garage. I informed them of the situation, and that the car should be covered by warranty.

 

 

The following day they informed me that the auxiliary belt had gone and that it had caused further damage to the cambelt and more beyond that. They said the auxiliary belt is not covered beyond the first year of the warranty as it is a wear and tear item.

 

The garage has made an attempted fix by replacing the cambelt,

but to no resolution, and is now in the process of having to remove the cylinder head to inspect further.

 

 

As you can imagine, the costs are racking up fast, and they still don't know the extent of the damage, worst case is the whole engine needs to be replaced, and that would cost more than the vehicle is worth.

 

In the meantime,

I lodged a complaint with Ford customer relationship centre,

who took a week to get back to me,

just to inform me that they had spoke to the garage, and reiterated the exact info

- that I wasn't covered and there's nothing they can do.

 

Frankly, I feel this is absolutely bonkers,

the vehicle is 2 years old..

. I don't expect to buy an almost new car,

and 6 month down the line have it break down to the cost of thousands or even more.

 

 

Surely the service should have caught that the belt would go soon,

it seems crazy that the cars only done 40k miles and has broke down this badly.

 

Now, even as a wear/tear item, it has caused severely more damage than that

- I'd happily pay to replace the auxiliary belt if that went,

but it seems like a major issue for it to have caused more damage.

 

I'd appreciate any advice,

I don't feel I am responsible whatsoever for this occurring, I find it insane.

This is the first vehicle I've ever owned, and I felt I was playing it safe going for something still under warranty and as commonplace as a ford fiesta.

 

I'm still pushing my complaint further with Ford, but haven't had a further response from them yet.

 

Also, in the event my engine does need replacing,

I feel I am completely cornered,

I have no where to go at that point.

I'd be out of pocket massively, with no car to my name too.

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who stated in writing to you that the warranty was transferable upon sale?

 

 

if the belt had not been changed to date against manu's recommendations

then you might have a claim.

 

 

but if the manu does not recommend changing before 40k, then I cant see a claim sadly.

 

 

dx


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Warranty is the factory warranty, and Evans Halshaw stated that this would still cover the vehicle after my purchase.

 

The belt has never been changed as far as I am aware. It did not come up in the latest service in August.

 

Also a note - the Vehicle is currently not with that Evans Halshaw dealership, it is currently at a Marshall Ford dealership. They are dealing with the repairs.

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Evans Halshaw stated that this would still cover the vehicle after my purchase.

 

 

have you this in writing?


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I do not have this in writing from Evans Halshaw.

 

Jumping to the Ford site on new car warranty; It states there that the warranty continues upon sale. I cannot link the page due to new user restrictions but a google search for "Ford new car warranty" finds it more than easily enough.

 

I should be able to get written comfirmation that warranty is still valid on the vehicle (I am confident it is - having had discussions about it just not covering this component).

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well you would need written proof that the warranty carries over , from whatever source.

 

the other aspect you could explore is CRA.

 

however, you would need to prove that recommendations existed, that the manu has clearly stated in their published documentation, that such a belt needed replacing upon such mileage or time since last change or manu of the engine.


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What is the expected mileage for these belts before they should be replaced?

 

How many miles have you done on the vehicle since you bought it?


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The belts are expected to last 100,000 miles or 96 months.

 

I have done approximately 10,000 in the vehicle since purchase. The car has 40,000 altogether.

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In that case, I don't see any difficulty in making a claim under the Consumer Rights Act 2015. You are entitled to purchase an item which is of satisfactory quality and which will remain that way for a reasonable period of time. It seems clear from what you say that the belts were defective because they have failed after only 50% of their expected life span. I would say that the suppliers are responsible for the repair the defect and all the damage which has ensued from that – plus any associated losses.

 

I think the question now is what you prepared to do about it? You could try to enter into negotiations and reason with them on the basis of your statutory consumer rights – or you could proceed to a claim in the County Court.

 

Have you any idea of the value of the repairs? Also of your losses sustained so far?


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Thanks for the advice.

 

It seems reasonable that I should give Evans Halshaw the chance to respond or act before going the court route.

 

I will look to make contact with them, do you have any recommendation of how to go about writing this email? Including a summary of what has occurred and mentions of the CRA is what I'd figure?

 

Should I inform Marshall Ford that I am undergoing this process, and ultimately, should they manage to fully repair the vehicle, I want to re-obtain the car as going without for so long is already frustrating. That would mean paying the expenses myself - would this make it harder to reclaim from Evans Halshaw?

 

The full extent of damage is still unknown, all I know right now is that it is a minimum of around £2,000. Worst case is a new engine, which is more expensive than the value of the car at this time.

 

Do you suggest not pushing Ford on the warranty front now?

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Well seeing that there's been so much procrastination and denial, and seeing that there seems to be such a lack of a customer-facing attitude, my own approach would be to move immediately to a letter before action. I should say now that you should only send an LBA if you really mean to go ahead with the action at the expiry of the 14 day deadline. It's not worth bluffing.

 

I would recommend an LBA because in view of the mucking around, and the time it has all taken, I think now you need to get tough and you need to show that you are now taking control. If you simply enter into a further round of negotiation, you will end up in protracted negotiations which will take you beyond Christmas and into the New Year.

 

I think you need to dictate terms. If you are happy with this approach then I would get a quote for repairs or if you can't get an exact quote, get a ballpark figure.

 

Do you have a list of the damage? Can you be sure that that list is complete? Or might there be other hidden consequences that you don't know that yet? Also, I now realise that you have given us very few details of purchase – in particular the price of the car? I never understand why people come here and give us the stories about problems with items that they have bought and they don't even give the basic details of the transaction.

 

If you'd like to respond to the questions I've asked above please. Also, you need to start understanding the steps in bringing a small claim in the County Court.


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Do you have a list of the damage?

Can you be sure that that list is complete?

Or might there be other hidden consequences that you don't know that yet?

 

The full extent of damage is still being investigated. So I do not have a full list at this stage.

 

Also, I now realise that you have given us very few details of purchase – in particular the price of the car?

 

The vehicle cost.was around 5950. I am paying for it on finance - paying £3k upfront. The finance is done through Evans Halshaw scheme with Barclays.

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Okay, so whatever happens, any claim that you make would be within the small claims limit of £10,000. That is very good news and reassuring to know.

 

It seems to be taking a long time for them to discover the full extent of the damage. Are they dragging their heels?

 

As you are paying on finance, you could also avail yourself of section 75 – Consumer Credit Act although I expect this would make it all extremely complicated and so I think that your best course of action will be directly against the supplier.

 

Are you prepared to begin an action in the Small Claims Court? Do you know anything about it? It's very easy – but you need to understand the steps and there is lots written here. Also we have a Consumer Survival Handbook available on Amazon which has quite a lot about it as well.

 

I think that issuing a claim in about 14 days time, would coincide very nicely with all the fuss and chaos of Christmas and the New Year and you might even find yourself in a position where they don't deal with it probably and you might even be able to get a default judgement. However, you shouldn't rely on this that it would be a nice little Christmas bonus.

 

Personally I think 14 days is long enough for them to come to a decision to fix the car. If they couldn't give you a definite yes or no by that time then I would consider that they were simply prevaricating and trying to delay things around Christmas. I would then simply issue the court papers and that will concentrate their minds wonderfully.

 

The cost of the claim for, say, £5000 would probably be about £350 or so. Eventually they would be a hearing fee to pay as well. You would get all of this back if you won the case. I estimate, on the basis of what you have said, that your chances of success are much better than 90%. I would expect that they would put their hands up and fix the car and simply re-pay your fees.

 

If you'd like to proceed along this line is, we will be happy to help you, of course


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It seems to be taking a long time for them to discover the full extent of the damage. Are they dragging their heels?

 

I don't believe the Marshall Ford garage the vehicle is at has any reason to drag their heels, given they are going under the assumption that I will be liable for the costs.

 

- The vehicle was checked in with them on 21/11.

- Following day informed that aux belt has gone and that is the cause of the damage, this is not covered by warranty - they said they are still mid diagnosis, but wanted to confirm that I am not covered by warranty.

- On 23/11, they informed me that the cambelt is damaged, and the engine has no compression, the best course of action would be to replace the cambelt, warning that if this doesn't fix they'd be looking at taking off the cylinder head to inspect for further damage. They estimated a cost of around 600-700 for this replacement. I gave my go ahead for the repairs to take place.

- I now didn't hear till 28/11, in the mean time I had contacted Ford's customer service department with my complaint, to encourage them to pay up. The garage informed me the cambelt replacement was smooth, but didn't solve the issue. They will have to remove the cylinder head to inspect for further damage. They said they had been contacted by Ford about my complaint, and said they will call back tomorrow, after hearing the outcome of whether Ford decide to pay up.

- 29/11, they called to tell me Ford weren't going to pay up (echoing what the customer service department called me up to say just prior), and said they would get back to me later with a rough priceline of parts just for the removal of the cylinder head.

- 30/11 Garage called and informed me that it would be costing around 1200, apologised for how long that pricing took but also mentioned this obviously doesn't include any of the repairs necessary once they find out about what damage the engine has suffered internally. They said this is a 10 hour labour job, and I likely won't hear until Monday (5/12).

 

Today, I should hopefully receive a call, that would give me a better outline of the full damage. I will request a list of all damage at this stage if possible.

 

If Marshall Ford have managed to repair my vehicle, should I pay myself, in order to re-obtain my vehicle? Despite the fact I am looking to get Evans Halshaw to pay?

 

Now, none of these complaints so far have gone towards Evans Halshaw, whom I bought the vehicle from.

 

Thanks for all the advice - I will get clued up on the Small Claims court, I don't really know anything about it at this stage. I'll look into writing the LBA too. Currently I am at work though, so I cannot really do this until this evening.

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Sorry, do I understand that the people who supplied you with the vehicle don't know anything about this?


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That is correct, Evans Halshaw do not know about this situation yet, since I went down the route of trying to get ford to pay up with the warranty.

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Well I'm afraid that this was a complete error. You must contact the supplier today – in writing, by email. If you contact them on the telephone then you must record your call. See our customer services guide.

 

It is the supplier that is responsible. You must give them an opportunity to investigate and to sort it out. You can't just launch into a court claim against them without them having had proper opportunity for discussion and to repair.

 

I'm afraid that apart from anything else, you have been suckered by the "warranty" claim. This is simply another example of extended warranties and they are used in order to distract customers away from their consumer rights. You seem to have fallen for this hook, line and sinker.

 

I'm afraid that this complicates matters – although it doesn't change the eventual situation or the eventual outcome.

 

The good thing is that you have stuck to proper Ford dealerships and you have taken rapid and reasonable action at all times. If you had done anything else, the situation would have become very sticky. The complication is that the supplier may well start talking about the fact that somebody else has intervened and distorted the chain of causation and the chain of liability. Depending on their own customer-service attitude, they may try to use this to deflect liability away from themselves.

 

Your position must at all times be that you acted in an emergency when the vehicle broke down, you then put into the hands of official Ford dealers which are basically the same as the supplier and that everything you did was reasonable in the circumstances and that all times you have sought to keep the losses to a minimum.

 

I think that you will have to engage with the suppliers as a matter of urgency. You will be best off having an initial phone call – but recorded. Confirm whatever is said in writing and confirm your position that as they are an authorised dealer and it has simply been in the hands of authorised dealers, all the action you have taken has been reasonable and commensurate. Sound out the attitude of the supplier. If they start bleating on about the warranty et cetera, then tell them that you dismiss that and that if they will not do it as a matter of warranty, then they must do it as a matter of their statutory responsibilities under the Consumer Rights Act.

 

Frankly, if you have to start referring to your statutory rights then I think that you are already heading down the road of a small claim. Write to them today after your phone call and tell them that you are giving them an opportunity either to recover the vehicle from the Ford dealership which has at the moment, or else you are suggesting that they visit the Ford dealership and inspect the vehicle for themselves. Explain to them, though, that whatever happens, you are holding responsible for the repairs and all of your associated losses.

 

I have to say that I do understand a little more now about the attitude of the dealer who is looking after the car at the moment. Clearly they have no statutory responsibilities to you at all because they did not sell you the vehicle. However, it would have been decent of them to advise you to contact the seller. Frankly I'm surprised that nobody has made the suggestion and I'm a bit surprised that you didn't think to do either.

 

Anyway, as I have said, it complicates the matter a bit – but none of it is fatal. I suggest you get going straight away and get back to us and let us know what happens.

 

Record your calls


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Incidentally, if you had contacted the seller immediately, they would have tried much harder to have the warranty honoured – because they would realise that the alternative is that they would have to shoulder the costs. By involving a third party who has no interest either way, you didn't pick the most motivated person to present your case. Big fail.


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Incidentally, if you had contacted the seller immediately, they would have tried much harder to have the warranty honoured – because they would realise that the alternative is that they would have to shoulder the costs. By involving a third party who has no interest either way, you didn't pick the most motivated person to present your case. Big fail.

 

Unfortunately, it just happened to be where I could get my vehicle recovered to after the breakdown. I (badly) assumed it would be no issue since the vehicle is covered by warranty and just expected it to be straight forward.

I will make contact with Evans Halshaw immediately and report back to this thread with any initial outcome.

 

Thanks for the information, your help is very much appreciated.

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If ford doesn't list the auxiliary belt as an item to be changed for your car age and mileage, this engine failure should be covered by warranty.

You have duly serviced the car at ford and they never mentioned or suggested that auxiliary belt needed replacing.

It's a straight forward warranty claim imo.

As bankfodder said, the dealer that sold you the car would have tried much harder to get ford to pay under warranty; they have their ways to be heard by manufacturers.

I don't understand how ford can deny this repair under warranty.

What else could you do to look after the car???

You had it regularly serviced at main dealer and followed their service schedule.

How can they possibly claim that some items are only covered for a year when their life expectancy is much longer???

And do they have a list of things only covered by one year?

I thought Toyota were bad when they told me that vibrating parts are not covered by warranty: What part doesn't vibrate in a car???

Crazy!

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Unfortunately, it just happened to be where I could get my vehicle recovered to after the breakdown. I (badly) assumed it would be no issue since the vehicle is covered by warranty and just expected it to be straight forward.

I will make contact with Evans Halshaw immediately and report back to this thread with any initial outcome.

 

Thanks for the information, your help is very much appreciated.

 

Good. Stand your ground. Be assertive. You are completely in the right and there is no reason for you to give ground on this. Don't accept any compromises. Don't agree anything before you come back here and let us know so that we can give you our opinion. I hope you are recording your calls. If you don't then eventually you will regret it.


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I made a call to the customer concerns department at Evans Halshaw.

 

I stated I was recording the phone call from the outset, she said she has not granted permission for me to record said phonecall, to which I stated I have a legal entitlement to record the phonecall as long as I state I am doing so.

 

I roughly outlined the situation, that I purchased the vehicle in april, that the aux belt has gone before half of its expected life span, and that it has caused further damage and that my vehicle is currently at Marshall Ford. I mentioned it was taken there in emergency, but I am holding Evans Halshaw responsible, as quite clearly the car has not been up to a satisfactory standard.

 

She said I would be best speaking to a service lead at the dealership in Bedford itself, so she put me on hold to put me through, before coming back several minutes later to state that she couldn't get through to them, but will inform them to call me when they have chance, and that she would ensure it is within 3 working days.

 

I said that this is a matter of urgency, and also requested an email address - which she gave the standard one for the customer centre.

 

I don't think I am in a position to wait 3 working days really.

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I'm afraid that you're quite wrong about your rights to record. You haven't read our customer services guide – but you should do so. You are allowed to record calls but if you don't give a warning then all that means is that you can't publish the call although you can use it for instance in a court process for your own private purposes

So another big fail

 

By giving a warning that you are recording the call, you handing the advantage to the other side. The purpose of recording the call was to make sure that any incorrect statements would be evidenced and so could not later on be deniable.

 

Please read our customer services guide. Don't give warnings on phone calls. You not obliged to. The whole purpose of recording calls is to gather evidence which can help you.

 

Your being fobbed off. I suggest that you put your case done in writing and sent it to them. Tell them that you need a response by the end of the week because the matter is urgent. Also, put down in writing that you confirm that you have now brought the matter to their attention and that they understand the situation and that they are fully a notice as to the current position.

 

In your letter, make sure that you set out in a bullet pointed chronology everything that has happened. Just be factual. Tell them that the car is in for certain repairs and that you will be paying for that because it is in with an authorised Ford dealership but eventually you will be looking for full reimbursement from them. Assure them that you are doing everything you can to minimise the cost and the scale of the problem. Advise them that they should contact the repair garage immediately so they can have a full discussion without any further waste of time.

 

In future, please don't give warnings about phone calls. Frankly I think you are your own worst enemy. Get the email off to them straightaway. Frankly if you don't get a response – or the response that you want by Monday, then I think that you should issue a letter before action and then you should follow it up with the claim at the immediate expiry of your 14 day deadline.


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Apologies for not reading in full detail before that phone call. I will make sure to follow that in any future calls.

 

I have now sent an email with the events spelt out in a chronological list, and stated that I recommend they contact the repair garage.

I told them the matter is urgent, and I expect a response by the end of the week.

 

They should have all details needed, the dealership and garage in question, the car vehicle registration, my name and contact details.

 

I told them the vehicle ended up at Marshall as a matter of emergency after recovery it was the convenient place for the car to be taken to, and that the car has met its full service expectations and all have been completed at Ford dealerships.

 

As recommended, I informed them that I am doing everything possible to minimise the costs involved, and that I am holding them responsible, and if said repairs are completed prior to their action, I will pay those costs, but in full expectation of a full reimbursement from them for the repairs and associated costs.

 

Now to await their response. If I get a call from the Bedford dealership, I will have the original phone conversation I intended to have, and will aim to collect direct contact details for that person or someone relevant in that area. I will not state that I am recording the call in that situation.

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Okay. I think that you could spend a bit of time now reading around about how to begin a small claim in the County Court. There is lots of information on this site. There is also our Consumer Survival Handbook and there is lots of information for free all around the Internet.

 

Get a feeling for it. It's pretty simple but it gives you more confidence if you know what the steps are. It will be much better that you find out for yourself rather than asking us questions as you go along. You need to feel that you are in control of the situation.

 

Unfortunately, because of this additional complicating factor that you failed to inform the supplier, I think that you could probably aim for an issue date of 28 December. This is on the basis that they are uncooperative and that you send them a letter before action next Monday.

 

Be sure in your own mind that you are prepared to go ahead with this. It's not worth bluffing. You just lose credibility and make your life more difficult later on. Don't forget that these companies probably receive lots of complaints and threats of legal action which are never carried out. They probably imagine that you are just another one of them.

 

As long as you are sure that you're going to go ahead, then you set a deadline of 14 days. Immediately afterwards – but in this case on 28 December which is about the first working day after Christmas, you go on to MoneyClaim online and you issue your claim. There will be a checkbox in which you should indicate that you will be sending a more detailed particulars of claim later on. You will have to do this within seven days of the issue of the claim.

 

Your claim will basically be quite simple

 

  1. On XXX date, the claimant bought a second-hand vehicle – make, model, year, registration number, mileage from the defendants, and authorised Ford dealer.
  2. On XXX date, and after only 10,000 miles of use, the cam belt broke and caused substantial damage to the engine as a consequence. The car had to be towed from the motorway to another authorised Ford dealer.
  3. The car was not of satisfactory quality but the defendant has refused to acknowledge their responsibility under the Consumer Rights Act 2015.
  4. The cost of repairs has yet to be decided and so the claimant claims compensation not exceeding £3500 to be decided by the court
  5. losses – total up your losses here after having discussed it with us. No need to itemise them at this point.

broadly that

 

Find out the fees for a claim of that size – and any other fees such as hearing fee et cetera.

 

You will have to work out for yourself whether you think the figure that I have suggested is going over the top – but you need to give yourself a comfortable margin because you never know what might ensue once they open it up.

 

They might eventually approach you with an offer to settle on condition that you withdraw the claim. I would suggest that you would only do this subject to a Tomlin order – the order including a provision that repairs would be under guarantee blah blah blah, but we can figure that out when you get to it.

 

Start off by reading around, satisfy yourself that this is the route that you want to take – and that also the fees don't pose any problem.


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