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My car would not start with the turn of a key.

 

L&J Autos (131-135 Whitehouse Lane, Bristol BS3 4DN) took my car in.

I was quoted £150 for recovery, a replacement starter motor and labour.

 

They are listed on Facebook as: ljautos7

 

I collected the car later that same day.

I was told there was nothing wrong with the starter motor.

I was told a mini 30A fuse and a relay switch was replaced.

I was charged £100.

 

36 hours later, exactly the same problem.

I turn the ignition key and I hear a clicking noise.

The starter motor will not turn.

 

I contacted the garage.

Told them the problem isn't fixed.

They replied "You drove it away didn't you? So it's fixed!"

 

After several phone calls I have been insulted and threatened to 'have my head punched in'.

 

I asked them to look at the car again but instead, they gave excuse after excuse - some ridiculous, as to why the car won't start.

 

I demanded a refund. They reacted aggressively calling me a 'dick head' and dropping the 'F'-word.

 

I feel I have been mugged off by this cowboy outfit.

 

How should I proceed?

 

It's not as though I can afford to lose £100, I'm unemployed.

I used my fortnightly dole money to pay the garage.

 

Citroen C2 Furio 1.4 HDI

Edited by paultomasi
corrections

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Your battery is on the way out..

Yes you've been mugged off but £100 for a fuse and a relay is about right..... That's if you needed them

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We had a similar issue with a Volvo and starter motor was replaced. Car would work for a few days and then the same problem and back to the garage. Eventually took it to an auto electrician who found a bad connection and £10 later I was on my way with no issues.

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sgtbush thank you for your reply.

 

BATTERY

 

To rule out the battery, I gave it an overnight charge. A multimeter across the battery terminals while attached to the car read 12.44 volts.

 

Additionally, I used heavy duty jump leads to attach an external heavier duty (Bosch S5 007, 74 Ah) fully charged battery in parallel to the car. This only resulted in a slightly louder clicking noise when turning the ignition key. The voltage across the car terminals read 12.55 volts.

 

I located the mini 30A fuse they said they replaced which was blown, replaced it with a 20A fuse (the only one at hand at the time), turned the ignition and it blew immediately with a visible flash and faint bang. This could be due to it being an unrated fuse.

 

I have ordered replacement fuses from Amazon. I will provide an update when they arrive.

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Surfer01 thank you for your reply.

 

I have not ruled out an electrical fault because...

 

Prior to the car going to the garage, the electric windows and radio were dead.

 

I didn't think it was related.

 

While at the garage, a mechanic said he's got the car starting now, he's still got the windows and radio to sort. How much of that is accurate I don't know.

 

 

UPDATE

 

I have just received replacement fuses in the post. Replacing the two fuses mentioned in my previous post, both electric windows and radio are dead again.

 

I have tried the ignition since replacing fuses. Nothing. Just a 'click'. Fuses still intact.

 

The eject mechanism of the radio still works when ejecting and re-inserting the CD.

 

When turning on the ignition, the dash shows "Info: Economy Mode Active".

 

On the dash panel, the battery light is flashing (red). The engine light is lit (orange).

 

The battery is showing a good charge.

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Actually if you have charged the battery overnight and it only reads 12.55 after charging then the battery is faulty. The minimum it should read after charging ( and a surface charge reading, which you do by turning on headlights on full beam for 3 seconds usually) is 13.6 Volts.

 

 

On balance I think the battery is faulty. The starter motor relies on volts plus amps with the driving force being the volts so if the volts are low and you have a set resistance in the starter you'll get a higher amp which will blow the fuse.

 

 

I was caught out on a Saxo by this 10 years ago.

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agree..

wack a meter across the battery when you try and start it …..,bet it drops well below 12VDC.

 

in the good ole days id have said wack the starter motor with a hammer sounds like the pinion or the relay [bendix] is sticking

but I wont say that as makes me feel old ...and helisuk...


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sgtbush, please view my reply to your post.

 

Thank you.

Edited by paultomasi
addition of member name

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heliosuk, thank you for taking the time to reply to my post.

 

VOLTAGE

 

I am not familiar with the term "surface charge reading" however, is this performed while the engine is running or not running?

 

If this reading is taken while the engine is NOT running then, does the ignition switch need to be off or on (first position)?

 

What can raise the resistance in the starter motor?

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not whilst running no. ignition 1st or second position [last before you turn to start the car]

turn on your full beam for say a minute.

then measure the voltage across the battery terminals themselves NOT the connectors of the wires to the car.

then check across the connectors to the car the voltages should be the same.

 

if the voltage is as you say 12.55 that typically means the battery is not upto scratch.

 

if the starter is faulty it can give/present a higher resistance, so requires more power to crank it over.

 

ideally what you need is a battery discharge tester most garages have them.


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CONTINUATION

 

My battery is Motrio 8671016919 LB2 50Ah 600A E.N. Date stamped 27-01-15.

 

Open voltage on battery is 12.58 V.

 

Removed battery for recharge.

 

dx100uk, will perform test tomorrow.

 

Will report back after 36 hours.

Edited by paultomasi

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Your battery is losing charge, its on its way out and as its getting colder now your battery will continue to fail.

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sgtbush thank you for your reply.

 

Quote: "Your battery is losing charge, its on its way out and as its getting colder now your battery will continue to fail".

 

Do you think the garage would have picked this up?

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Unless they are fishmongers and fix cars in their spare time, yes, should have been one of the first tests to do.

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yep


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sgtbush, dx100uk, king12345

 

I charged the battery overnight using a RAC-HP026 12A battery charger set at trickle charge (3A).

 

I read somewhere I should leave the battery stand for 12 hours or so to allow it to settle after re-charging.

 

Sure enough, initially it measured 12.63V, an hour later 12.62V, another hour later 12.61V, then two later 12.6V.

 

The following morning it measured 12.99V. (You learn something every day lol).

 

I measured it every few hours and noticed it gradually drop again, finally settling at 12.9V.

 

More than half a day later it was still 12.9V.

 

I discovered my digital multimeter's 10A (unprotected) circuit is blown so I cannot perform any current draw tests until I obtain a replacement DMM.

Edited by paultomasi

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sgtbush, dx100uk, king12345, heliosuk, Surfer01

 

FURTHER DIAGNOSIS

 

Originally, when the car was in the garage, the mechanic said he changed a mini fuse. I am since informed the fuse he refers to is fuse No. 8 under the bonnet - the Starter fuse.

 

This was originally a 20A fuse however, Citroen later changed this to 25A due to frequent failures.

 

The mechanic had replaced this with a 30A fuse. Whatever else he did to get the car going was just enough to get me home and do one day's motoring.

 

And then I was back to square one again - no crank.

 

And sure enough, the Starter fuse tested blown again.

 

That was last week.

 

Today, with the battery at 12.9V and a new 25A Starter fuse, I go to start the car and it blows the fuse immediately.

 

I did not see any point retrying with a higher amperage fuse (as the garage had done) because whatever is causing the fuse to blow is likely to cause damage elsewhere if I defeat the fuse's purpose.

 

Any thoughts on how I should proceed?

 

(I still do not have a replacement digital multimeter).

Edited by paultomasi

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starter motor sticking or the engage pinion sticking will cause it to draw far too much current.


PLEASE DONT HIT QUOTE IF THE LAST POST IS THE ONE YOU ARE REPLYING TOO.

MAKES A THREAD TWICE AS LONG TO SCROLL THROUGH!

please do not post jpg images directly to a topic..USE PDF ....READ UPLOAD.

 

WE CAN'T GIVE ADVICE BY PM - IF YOU SEND ME A LINK TO YOUR THREAD - I WILL BE HAPPY TO OFFER HELP THERE

Single Premium PPI Q&A Read Here

Reclaim mis-sold PPI Read Here

Reclaim Bank Account, Loan & Credit Card Charges Read Here

The CAG Interest Tutorial Read Here

spreadsheets 

 

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sgtbush, dx100uk, king12345, heliosuk, Surfer01

 

FURTHER DIAGNOSIS

 

Originally, when the car was in the garage, the mechanic said he changed a mini fuse. I am since informed the fuse he refers to is fuse No. 8 under the bonnet - the Starter fuse.

 

This was originally a 20A fuse however, Citroen later changed this to 25A due to frequent failures.

 

The mechanic had replaced this with a 30A fuse. Whatever else he did to get the car going was just enough to get me home and do one day's motoring.

 

And then I was back to square one again - no crank.

 

And sure enough, the Starter fuse tested blown again.

 

That was last week.

 

Today, with the battery at 12.9V and a new 25A Starter fuse, I go to start the car and it blows the fuse immediately.

 

I did not see any point retrying with a higher amperage fuse (as the garage had done) because whatever is causing the fuse to blow is likely to cause damage elsewhere if I defeat the fuse's purpose.

 

Any thoughts on how I should proceed?

 

(I still do not have a replacement digital multimeter).

 

 

That should indicate that the battery is okay and that the fault draining it lies elsewhere. Been through that in the past 2 weeks and our battery is okay although it discharged right down to 5.7v.

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Surfer01 did you manage to re-charge your battery from 5.7V?

 

sgtbush, dx100uk, king12345, heliosuk, Surfer01 I have researched this topic (fuse No. 8 blowing / no crank) and from what I am led to believe, the problem is as described by dx100uk.

 

I am 99% convinced replacing the starter motor is the recommended course of action the garage should have taken. Proper electro-mechanical diagnostics would have pointed to this conclusion.

 

Afterall, I had already agreed up front and confirmed a price so why didn't they just go ahead and do what we agreed upon?

 

My only redress at this point is to lodge an official complaint and ask for a refund, compensation and costs.

 

Also, I will have to find another garage willing to undertake this work at an affordable cost.

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Sorry I should have added that the battery was an AGM battery.

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UPDATE

 

Car went to another garage 4 days ago. Starter motor was changed and loose earth connection was tightened. All is well since. Cost £150.

 

Not happy having paid £100 to first incompetent garage but glad problem is sorted.

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