How to buy and/or complain about a new or secondhand car and/or a garage
Purchasing a car, second to your own home is probably the biggest purchase many of us will ever make. Most purchases go smoothly although it may not seem like it! Regardless of whether you buy a new or second hand car, at some point it will probably end up in a garage to for service and/or repair.
So I’ve brought together lots of different posts all in one place!
Stories of buying cars and complaining
Smart Car Not Smart Enough for this Cow! Gaining redress for faulty new car) This is the story of how my Mum’s new car developed faults for which SmartCar (Mercedez) didn’t want to provide redress. I won.
How to complain about a second hand car story of how I helped Elaine get a full refund for her second hand car
How to protect yourself when purchasing a car and how to complain
Car buyers alert: how not to get fobbed off what you need to know to ensure you are in a good position when buying a new or secondhand car
Everything you need to know about financing your car purchase the different ways of financing your car and what to do if it goes wrong
A guide to credit and debit cards and the Consumer Credit Act 1974 how and when you can complain to your credit card company or bank
What you need to know when using a garage
How not to get fobbed off by a garage (and what to do if you have been!) how to protect yourself when choosing and using a garage
How to save money on car insurance
How to save money on your car insurance lots of tips and ideas on saving money on your car insurance
Do Morethan just comparison websites for insurance quotes! word of warning about only using one site for comparing quotes
Why motor legal protection is a rip off and the free alternative what it says on the tin!
More help and advice on effective complaining
Why you should write not ‘phone to complain effectively the importance of writing not phoning when complaining
For more help on complaining effectively see Top 20 Tips How to Complain!
For masses of information, tips, guidance, laws and regulations and templates GET THE BOOK! How To Complain: The ESSENTIAL Consumer Guide to Getting REFUNDS, Redress and RESULTS!
Choosing a garage to undertake repairs on your vehicle
When you choose a garage you should look to see if it is a member of a trade association and if any doubt about the authenticity of the sign you can contact the trade association to check. You can also look online to find garages which are members of the association.
Always agree a price, preferably in writing, before work is undertaken. You may also wish to agree on a maximum total cost for incidental small items which can be incurred without having to call you. If you haven’t done this and you feel that you are overcharged then you should get estimates for the work from other garages to use as evidence. If you are forced to pay, ensure that you state, (in writing as usual is best), that you are paying under protest.
When choosing a garage to undertake work see more details here.
When things go wrong
The Consumer Rights Act 2015 (Supply of Goods and Services Act 1982 for purchases prior to 1st October 2015) covers vehicle repairs. So should you believe that the repair that you have received is not of satisfactory quality or hasn’t been undertaken in a reasonable length of time you can assert your legal rights and request a refund or that the job is undertaken properly. This includes when a vehicle does not function satisfactorily a few days later due to the repair. Should the garage refuse to refund or redo the job you can go to arbitration through the trade association if it is a member. For peace of mind you might always want to check that a garage is a member before taking your vehicle to it. You should always give the garage a chance to put things right as you have a legal obligation to keep costs to a minimum. You should also be compensated for out of pocket expenses such as using different transport when the garage undertakes the job again but you must keep this to a minimum.
If a garage damages your vehicle then this is a breach of the Consumer Rights Act 2015 (Supply of Goods and Services Act 1982 prior to 1st October 2015) and the garage must pay to put the damage right unless it can prove it was not responsible.
If the garage claims that it is not responsible for vehicles left in its possession it is in breach of the Consumer Rights Act 2015 (Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts Regulations 1999 for servicing before 1st October 2015).
For templates and more tips and advice for complaining about garages see the bestselling book.