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Old 29th Apr 2009, 12:05   #1
Hodders
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New Car Warranty Ombudsman

Is there an independent ombudsman for car warranties ?

Our 3 year 4 wek old Mondeo developed a fault which will cost about 900 to repair. The fault occurred when the vehicle was less than 3 years old, but it was intermittent and did not log a fault code.

The dealership was only able to 'see' the fault after the warranty had expired.

Ford are muttering on about the date of the fault w.r.t the warranty being the date that Ford finds it. My argument is that the fault (which resulted in limp home mode/engine cutting out) was reported under warranty. The fact the the dealer/the car was unable to diagnose it is not our fault and is irrelevant.

So is there an ombudsman I can go to, or is the watchdog/small claims court route.

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Old 29th Apr 2009, 12:17   #2
Five_Star
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Not sure about the ombudsman, but Matt100 is having a similar battle with his Focus ST turbo and warranty, he might be able to shed some light on how to get Ford to cough up
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Old 29th Apr 2009, 13:34   #3
Hodders
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Originally Posted by Five_Star View Post
Not sure about the ombudsman, but Matt100 is having a similar battle with his Focus ST turbo and warranty, he might be able to shed some light on how to get Ford to cough up
I'll see if I can find him.

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Old 29th Apr 2009, 13:56   #4
Ricochet J
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Will a small claims court suffice?

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Old 29th Apr 2009, 16:09   #5
Hodders
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I do think that if they refuse to honour this, then the small claims court may be the preferred option.

We have a log of when the vehicle showed the fault. We also have records of the vehicle going to the garage for no other reason than getting the fault code read....

Sounds pretty open and closed to me. The only thing that has been said is that there are a range of issues (dirty fuel) that can cause intermittent issues of the type we experienced inside warranty (and not resulted in a fault code) and that the PCM may only have gone wrong outside warranty.

Sounds like too much of a coincidence to me though.

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Old 29th Apr 2009, 16:41   #6
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In situations like this, put it in writing, by recorded delivery to the workshop manager or similar at the dealership with the title: Notice of impending legal action. Add a copy of your log and give them a period of time, say 14 days, to come back to you with how they intend to fix this under warranty. Add in that this will be your final written communication and all future correspondents will be issued by your solicitor if you do not receive a satisfactory response. Stay on fact and do not get personal. Mentioning distress is fine but don't go too much into 'feelings' et al.

The threat of legal action is normally good enough, the cost of even he in-house solicitors time to the dealership, risk to reputation, risk of setting a legal precedent etc will be far and away more than the 900 for your repair, especially as it'll cost them significantly less than that in real terms. When I succeeded with it was over a smaller amount and not on a car, but should be enough to get the job done. Plus, if you do go to court, you can prove you'd offered the chance to settle before any litigation was necessary.

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Old 29th Apr 2009, 17:24   #7
Muncher
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What legal precedent?

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Old 29th Apr 2009, 18:09   #8
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What legal precedent?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kitchster_uk View Post
The threat of legal action is normally good enough, the cost of even he in-house solicitors time to the dealership, risk to reputation, risk of setting a legal precedent etc

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Old 29th Apr 2009, 21:15   #9
Muncher
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How is there any risk whatsoever of setting a precedent?

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Old 29th Apr 2009, 21:35   #10
Kitchster_uk
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How is there any risk whatsoever of setting a precedent?
Whilst it is the small claims court and therefore no legal precedent can be set per se, we are in the information age where, if the OP wins his case against the big, nasty motor company, he'll tell the world, it'll be all over the internet and there is a chance of the newspapers and programs like watchdog picking up on it so other people with less [COLOR="Yellow"]*[/COLOR][COLOR="Yellow"]*[/COLOR][COLOR="Yellow"]*[/COLOR][COLOR="Yellow"]*[/COLOR][COLOR="Yellow"]*[/COLOR][COLOR="Yellow"]*[/COLOR][COLOR="Yellow"]*[/COLOR][COLOR="Yellow"]*[/COLOR] than the OP start to grow them and will cite his victory. More and more cases, more and more legal action and therefore more and more hassle.

Large corporates don't need the hassle and can't afford to the reputational risk at the moment.

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Old 29th Apr 2009, 22:01   #11
Rotty
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The inner wing wheel liner has come away on the Missus's astra

wasn't urgent so left it till first service which was at 1yr 2wks

they won't fix it as for some reason that part only has a 1 yr warranty

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Old 29th Apr 2009, 22:04   #12
Tesla
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rotty View Post
The inner wing wheel liner has come away on the Missus's astra

wasn't urgent so left it till first service which was at 1yr 2wks

they won't fix it as for some reason that part only has a 1 yr warranty
Ask them how long the warranty is on the fixing?

Surely the fixing has failed and not the liner?

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Old 29th Apr 2009, 22:51   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rotty View Post
The inner wing wheel liner has come away on the Missus's astra

wasn't urgent so left it till first service which was at 1yr 2wks

they won't fix it as for some reason that part only has a 1 yr warranty
What Astra is it mate... contact me in trust might be able to help

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Old 5th May 2009, 10:55   #14
Hodders
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Well after some hassling the Ford Customer Relationship department have offered to meet 70% of the cost reducing a 910 bill to about 270 so not too bad.

They claim that the original warning light could have been any number of things ranging from a tank of dirty diesel to any other intermittent problem.

In all fairness I can't think of a way of proving otherwise. Circumstance is not going to stand up in any kind of legal argument so I guess I'm happy.

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