The Brigadier 15:42 27 Jan 2009

Took my wifes Polo in to the local garage who are not cheap to have the electric motor replaced as the other one had failed.

Got a call half an hour ago to pick the car up, the job was done. Cost was £40!

Seems some grease & a bit of TLC and all was sorted out, no need to replace motor (which costs £££)

So the garage wins some brownie points after all!

  The Brigadier 15:48 27 Jan 2009

Sorry forgot to add the bit about "The electric Window needed a new motor"

  crosstrainer 15:55 27 Jan 2009

Some very good independent garages around, but as with everything, there also exist some bad ones.

In the "Good old days" I could undertake all my own servicing on both motorcycles and cars...An engine strip down and re-build was great fun, and I did a lot of classic re-builds as well.

Today's cars are simply not user serviceable beyond changing a tyre or topping up oil etc.

I wouldn't know where to start with my new M5....Everything needs to be put on special diagnostic machines and most items are plug in modules....The electronics are complex, and the only way to sort them out is to return to the dealer.

Hope it proves as reliable as the other BMW's I've had over the years!

  recap 16:10 27 Jan 2009

I had to have the cylinder head gasket changed on my car. The garage that did the job took a month, warning bells going off for that one. The biggest warning bells rang when the garage owner called me to see if I could identify a noise in the engine after they had put it all back together?!?!?!?.

I have recently had to have more work carried out due to this so called garage doing the cylinder head gasket. Luckily I have found a one man band, and he knows his stuff. His policy is 'if I can't fix it I won't charge for all the hours I have worked on it'.

I first took my car to him as the secondary air inlet value was faulty. He changed this but still the warning light would come on. He finally found that when the engine had been put back together the clots before had not replace a gasket. He only charged me for the parts.

He has my business from now on!!!

  crosstrainer 16:16 27 Jan 2009

Just the kind of person you want....His reputation IS his business...Large outfits with lot's of employees and poor supervision leads to problems.

Fortunatley, I have a great relationship with my BMW main dealer having been with them for years....They had kittens when they thought I might change to an Audi (only test drove it, but told them) And gave me a nice discount as well as some extra toy's.

  oresome 16:25 27 Jan 2009

What annoys me is paying for a "service" which in reality is an opportunity for them to advise me what requires doing at additional cost.

An example with my car was the door check strap was loose. The garage phoned to ask if I wanted it tightening at a cost of £15? I retightened the bolt myself in less than 30 second. I was also advised the front tyres needed changing. I declined their offer and went to a tyre dealer. He sent me away saying come back in 6 months!

The latest report states that the air conditioning is less than 100% efficient as is the brake fluid and other hydraulic fluids. Fair enough, but why aren't these corrective costs included in the servicing price up front so you know what the cost will be?

Another garage contacted my daughter whilst servicing her car to say the front disc brakes were dusty. Did she want them cleaning at a cost of £60 over and above the cost of the service. I told her to decline and I'd spray the hosepipe on them. They also tried the two new tyres required, which she declined. Like mine, the tyres still have a few months wear left on them.

Rant over!

  Forum Editor 17:42 27 Jan 2009

My wife drives a BMW, and recently she yanked the door handle a little too vigorously (it was a frosty morning, and the door had stuck) and it broke off.

Yesterday we collected the car from the garage where a nice new handle (colour matched to the car) had been fitted. I was expecting the usual hefty BMW type bill.

Total cost: £79 and a few pence. I couldn't get my credit card into the machine quickly enough.

  crosstrainer 05:50 28 Jan 2009

The main BMW dealers are pretty good on the whole, the have a reputation for quality which they maintain well. The labour cost on fitting the handle would have been about £30 at least, so you got a great deal there.

  Noldi 11:49 28 Jan 2009

My last visit to a BMW garage was with my wife’s car, We brought a used BMW from the dealer and picked it up in daylight, a week later we came out of restaurant and noticed the lights under the door handles where brighter on one side. Returning to the dealer we where told by the service manager if we hadn’t picked up the problem when we collected the car he was not sure it was covered on the warranty and we would have to pay £70 just to have the problem investigated and then further cost to fix the problem with no guarantee that we would not have to pay.
A quick visit to the show room sorted out the warranty issue but £70 just to take the door handle of and have a look inside I think the FE had a very good deal.


  HondaMan 11:53 28 Jan 2009

"she yanked the door handle a little too vigorously and it broke off"

I take it she wins all the arguments then?

  crosstrainer 12:08 28 Jan 2009

As I posted, some are better than others....Perhaps I've just been lucky, or the fact that I have done business with them for years helps.... I don't know, but my Cardiff main dealer is superb.

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