Gransnet forums

Other subjects

Garages

(9 Posts)
Emelle Tue 18-Dec-18 22:15:40

Early this morning I dropped my car off at the Garage for it's second service. I left the key with the Service staff, none of whom I had seen before and left assuming I would be contacted to pick my car up after Lunch. As the car is less than two years old and fairly low mileage I didn't think there would be any problem, so when I got a call an hour later to tell me the brake discs needed replacing and the Air conditioning was due to be serviced in a month and should they go ahead I was surprised. Much to my horror, the cost would go from just under £300 to nearly £800. Fortunately DH was listening to the call and went back to discuss this with them at which point they admitted that the additional work wasn't vital. Now I am left wondering if they were taking advantage because they thought that I was a woman on my own. Has anybody else had a similar experience?

Grammaretto Tue 18-Dec-18 22:38:49

I bought my 2nd hand car from Toyota dealer and it was recalled due to a possible faulty airbag. This was after 6 months. I left it with them and asked them to check out a rattle I had noticed.
When I picked it up they charged me nothing, had cured the rattle, replaced the airbag release mechanism and valetted the car BUT they suggested I needed 2 new tyres, alignment check and something else which in total would have been £650!!
I thanked them but there is no way I can afford that sort of attention for my little car.
I will ask my trusty mechanic to take a look.
It may not be because you are a woman on your own. They do this health check and that's what it will cost.

J52 Tue 18-Dec-18 23:37:41

I bought a two year old car from a national retailer. When I took it back for a service after 4000 miles, but a year later I was told it would need two new tyres and new disc brakes, at great cost!
I returned home I took up the issue with the service manager who told me that it was only ‘advisory’.
Two years later I have replaced the tyres at my trusted tyre supplier at half the price and had two full services and two Mots at my local garage, that the car passed with no work needed. At no time have replacement brakes ever been mentioned!
I would never buy a car from the national dealership again.

cornergran Wed 19-Dec-18 05:38:02

Same thing happened to us with a Seat car. The dealership reported a need for new brakes at the second service. Mr C was amazed and had the car checked by another garage. Nothing wrong with the brakes then or two years later. The car never returned to the original dealership. In hindsight we should have complained to their trade association and to Seat but life was hectic and .we let it go. Seems we weren’t alone.

M0nica Wed 19-Dec-18 07:14:04

I never go near a main dealer, except in absolute extremis. I twice had a car returned to me in a dangerous condition by a 2 different main dealers and on one of those occasions was also charged for work not done, which had been requested.

I always run old cars. My current car is 13 years old and was 5 years old when I bought it. Like Grammaretto, I own a Toyota, I have all the updates done, at my nearest, difficult to get to dealer, but the rest of the time I have always used local back street garages and have always had the best possible service from them.

cornergran My experience is that complaining to HQ about main dealers is a waste of time. When my car was twice left in a seriously dangerous condition, if the wheel had come off, or the steering column come apart on a fast road, I could have been killed. I complained to Citroen about it, they did nothing. It was the waste of a stamp.

gmelon Wed 19-Dec-18 08:08:08

Mine goes to the main dealer.
I worked in the car trade for some time.

The reception staff know who brought it in and the sex of the owner.
The service staff (the mechanics) have no idea. One car is much like the other in their busy day. They report as they find.

Fairness is easier to come by in a dealership because no one is personally pocketing the money.

sunseeker Wed 19-Dec-18 08:49:21

My experience is completely the opposite. I take my car to the main dealer for service and MOT every year. This year I thought the battery may need replacing as I had problems starting it one morning. I mentioned this to the receptionist and told them if this was the case to go ahead and replace it and not bother to check with me first. When I collected the car I was told the battery was absolutely fine, the mechanic then came out and explained how he had fully tested the battery and found no problem, he did go into a complicated explanation as to why on that one occasion I had problems (which I didn't understand!) - no extra charges - and I have had no further problems with starting the car!

SueDonim Wed 19-Dec-18 11:47:33

I've been buying my own cars for over 20 years and not had any of the experiences detailed in the OP. I have mostly used the main dealer and always found them fair. They do have a local reputation to protect, maybe that's why.

Emelle Wed 19-Dec-18 12:00:21

We have been using the same Dealer for over 40 years which make this experience even more disappointing. All the people I dealt with yesterday were new employees who didn't know me. I think it might be worth me mentioning to the owner of the garage who we know well.