to be pissed off at the way I was treated at Vauxhall, and to be dreading going back?

(50 Posts)
littlemisssarcastic Sat 20-Apr-13 22:58:55

Took my car to an independent garage with a good reputation for MOT last week.
Whilst at the garage, the mechanic noticed the car kept cutting out, something which I had not noticed before, although I have noticed it gets a bit jerky sometimes and had mentioned this on booking it in.

Anyhow, mechanic cleans out the throttle body confused and changes the fuel filter amongst other non related things that needed doing.

However, this didn't resolve the issue of car cutting out, so mechanic tells me I need to have an ECU software update done. confused
Phoned vauxhall and am told this update will cost me £28.63 inc VAT. I thought..that's very reasonable, so took person's name who told me that price, wrote it down, repeated it to her to confirm it was £28.63 including VAT and arranged to take car down that afternoon.

On arriving at Vauxhall for the update, I discovered that the lady I spoke to earlier has gone home sick, and then I am told that it is £70+ VAT for the update. Well, I wasn't happy about that at all!!
I told the service receptionist what I was told on the phone, and she said 'I don't believe my colleague would say it was that price when it isn't, I just don't believe you.' shock

I eventually managed to get it done for the price I was originally told, but it didn't resolve the problem and now I have to take the car back on Monday to have a diagnostics test. I have managed to reduce the price of the diagnostics test to £60 inc VAT after complaining to the manager of that particular branch of Vauxhall at how I was virtually called a liar by the receptionist, and how after speaking to the receptionist, the master technician comes out and tells me that he will do it for the reduced price, but I need a full diagnostics test which will cost £90+VAT, as well as the ECU update, so I went in thinking I was going to spend £28.63 and was quickly being told I would need to spend £192 and there was still no guarantee of diagnosing the problem!!

So now they are telling me that the diagnostic test may not even diagnose the problem, and no one seems to have any idea why my car has begun to just cut out and I am left hoping it is a minor fault that can be rectified relatively cheaply and quickly.

So AIBU to be treated like that? sneered at? have some woman raise her eyebrows and disbelieve what I am saying?
AIBU to not want to go back next week for diagnostics, even though I will go because I need my car to be diagnosed and fixed?

Deadhamsterssmell Sun 21-Apr-13 09:22:56

DH who's has his own garage says ''they are taking the piss!'' he tells me that Vauxhall will already have had the car on the diagnostic machine to sort out the ECU, if they were a decent garage the would have just run a full test.

He has an independent garage and he charges £45 for a the same test that Vauxhall do. Unfortunately we're not near the SE though.

Sorry not very helpful.

littlemisssarcastic Sun 21-Apr-13 11:44:17

Thanks for all replies so far. I need to get my car on the road asap. I drive for a living and can't work until my car is back on the road.

I shall google vauxhall diagnostics, but I am particularly interested in what your husband says Deadhamsterssmell.
Is there a possibility they just attempted to do a software update and didn't do a diagnostics test?

I am hearing such awful stories about vauxhalls just cutting out, where no one seems to be able to pinpoint and fix what the problem is, and wish I could just buy another car tbh, but finances wont allow that. sad

Dawndonna Seems like zero customer service at Vauxhall is a commonplace thing.

If they have already done a diagnostics test when they attempted to update the software, I am loathe to go down there to throw away any more money on something that has already been done.

I just want to find someone who can tell me what the problem is, and how much it will cost to fix. Seems that may be too much to ask. sad
No one seems to know so far, so work is being done on my car that may or may not need doing, but nothing has resolved the problem so far, so back to more diagnostics, more attempts at what it could be, more money spent on possible solutions to a possible problem that may not be the answer anyway, more days off of work whilst waiting for someone to just tell me what exactly the problem is.
Tbh, right now, I'd settle for knowing a rough area where the problem is, or even 3 or 4 possibilities?

Grrrrrr angry

M0naLisa Sun 21-Apr-13 11:56:03

Sounds like a fuel injector could be blocked. Or fuel system problem if its cutting out.

littlemisssarcastic Sun 21-Apr-13 12:30:39

Would a diagnostics test pick that up M0naLisa?

I'm concerned from reading horror stories on internet that it will go for a diagnostics test and it wont show up a fault. sad

Does anyone know if EGR problems will show up on diagnostics? Or fuel injection problems? Or throttle body problems? etc etc

VenusStarr Sun 21-Apr-13 14:24:09

I have a vauxhall and when I first bought it had an issue that needed resolving so they needed to keep my car in. When I rang and spoke to the receptionist in the service department, she was incredibly rude and even laughed at me. Immediately after getting off the phone I called back to complain. I detailed what had been said on the phone and I was told that the calls are recorded and they would check. They bent over backwards to resolve the issue with my car and also gave me a free first year service due to their poor customer service.

Vauxhall franchises have a strict customer service policy. They will call you once the work is finished to ask you to rate them, anything less than 10 out of 10 means they lose money, ie a black bark on the franchise. Their treatment of your problems so far would warrant an investigation. Have you spoken to anyone higher within the company? I ended up having to go to a meeting with the branch manager to get it resolved, but it worked and got my car sorted.

Hope you get it sorted soon.

januaryjojo Sun 21-Apr-13 14:47:18

My EGR (vauxhall), problem was not picked up by vauxhalls computer, nor my independent guys, or the AAs!!

My friend who works for the RAC found it.

My car was cutting out too.

littlemisssarcastic Sun 21-Apr-13 15:22:40

VenusStarr I haven't been asked for any feedback wrt the software update attempt and the way I was treated at that visit.
Upon being told I must have misheard the price quoted, and that receptionist couldn't believe her colleague quoted me that price, because apparently she wouldn't have quoted that price, I asked to speak to the receptionist's supervisor, which is when the master technician came out of the office to speak to me.
After explaining that it was £70+VAT, but that actually what I needed was a full diagnostics test, which would be £90+VAT..on top of the diagnostics test, and that it wouldn't guarantee to resolve the problem..that's when I explained that the price had risen with each person I had spoken to. First the lady on the phone quoted me £28.63 inc VAT, then I go to drop my car off and am told it is £84 inc VAT until the master technician comes out and explains that what I need will cost me £192!! shock

I asked the master technician if he worked on commission!! He said he didn't, and then said he would do the software update for the original price I was quoted..£28.63.

I was annoyed at their attitude, more so the woman on reception, and whilst walking around outside, I came across the manager who said he would carry out a diagnostics test for £60 inc VAT if that's what I needed.

Of course, the car is still not right. They couldn't do the software update anyway, because my car already has the latest software for the ECU anyway, so I just paid for the software update which they couldn't do, and the problem still exists, so back for a diagnostics test and hopefully they will pinpoint the problem via the diagnostics test, although I'm not feeling optimistic about it now. sad

littlemisssarcastic Sun 21-Apr-13 15:26:38

I would happily call out the RAC if I thought they could resolve the issue. I am getting desperate now.
I have already taken 4 days off of work and it looks set to continue. I am self employed so don't earn anything when I'm not working. sad

I just can't afford to take time off for the foreseeable future. Who knows how long this is going to take to resolve? No one seems to know what's wrong, so I am just hoping this diagnostics test will show the problem up.

maddening Sun 21-Apr-13 23:11:35

How does your car cut out? Mine did it both when in motion and when idling. The diagnostic did not pick anything up as it was an intermittent fault. It was like it stalled and then if I came to a stop it would have trouble restarting sometimes I would wait a few mins before it would restart.

I had the ecu software downloaded then a brand new ecu! They checked everything and in the end I gave them permission to drive the car a distance to see the fault in action - I think they started to think I had made it up! In the end they called a vauxhall specialist who said he had seen this fault before and it was the coil pack that needed replacing - he said it had to be a genuine vauxhall part. They changed it and it hasn't done it since. Luckily I had bought the car second hand off a car dealer who gave a warranty so all this was done at their expense.

I would ask them to change the coilpack and see if that does it. The coilpack apparently costs around £ 20

littlemisssarcastic Sun 21-Apr-13 23:34:11

To be fair, I haven't driven the car very much since the mechanic first noticed the problem. I had noticed the car juddering whilst driving along before, but not cutting out. It was only when it went to the garage for the MOT that this problem started.

It cuts out when I stop. At junctions, roundabouts, anywhere I come to a stop. Doesn't always do it every time I bring the car to a stop, but does it on every single journey nonetheless.

It seems fine when I'm driving along, just when I stop, it cuts out. All the lights on the dashboard light up, as if I have just turned the key round IYSWIM, but no power. confused

Is it expensive for Vauxhall to change the coilpack?

littlemisssarcastic Sun 21-Apr-13 23:35:26

I mean, if the coilpack is approx £20, is it expensive for Vauxhall to fit it too?

maddening Sun 21-Apr-13 23:53:35

Don't know I'm sorry - I just remember from the conversation with my garage as he lamented about how much he had spent trying to fix it and it was a £20 coilpack in the end. Vauxhall didn't fit it - they got the part from vauxhall.

There is a website called piston heads that I was going to post on about my car but the problem got fixed but it seems to be car enthusiasts who might be more in the know.

Ilovemydogandmydoglovesme Mon 22-Apr-13 00:01:31

Sorry but don't you think that she might have actually said 'seventy' on the phone and you just misheard 'twenty'?

It's the sort of thing I do all the time, I'm deaf as a post.

zipzap Mon 22-Apr-13 00:13:55

Get a friend to ring up for a quote for a similar thing and see what they are quoted...

and then do the same in 3 months time when they have forgotten about the little debate they've had with you.

You'll then know exactly if they do this to reel people in and change the price when they get there and feel it is too late to back out or if it just was somebody making a genuine mistake when you called.

The other thing to think about is calling Trading Standards for advice on how to deal with this and to report them if you think they are being deliberately dodgy with the prices...

littlemisssarcastic Mon 22-Apr-13 00:21:44

I definitely didn't mishear Ilovemydog. I was extremely surprised at the price and asked her to repeat it again, then I asked her if it was £28.63 + VAT, or did it include the VAT, and she said it was 'all in' so I said 'Does that mean it is £28.63 including the VAT and she replied yes.

£28.63 sounds nothing like £84 either.

I imagine she will probably deny it now though.

zipzap I think I will do that. It will be interesting to see if it happens again when this has blown over. hmm

Am really not looking forward to going there again. sad

pigsDOfly Mon 22-Apr-13 00:55:32

This cutting out is a very common problem with Vauxhalls. My car now 13 years old has been doing it for as long as I've had it, from new. It has been tested for various things over and over again. After being messed about by a couple of Vauxhall dealerships we spoke to the head office who arranged for it to be tested free of charge. They still couldn't find the problems and it's gone one cutting out periodically since.

My daughters car, same model as mine, broke down one evening and they called the rescue service. The guy said what had caused the problem at the time was the same thing that was causing it to cut out. Sounds odd but he said that particular part was totally unnecessary to the safe and efficient running of the car and he removed it. The car has been running perfectly ever since - several years - and has not cut out since.

Sorry but I can't remember what the part was. If I could I'd have it removed from my car. It's been a nightmare from the day I got it.

I would never take my car to a Vauxhall dealer. I needed the windscreen washers rinsed through many years ago. They quoted me £60 my local garage did it for £12.

I have to say that my Vauxhall goes to our local dealer, and they are brilliant (near Edinburgh). They are generally the cheapest for work on my old Astra - ie £30 cheaper than anywhere else local for a new radiator recently. They also do the diagnostic for free, because it always goes there for its service and MOT. I am realising they are maybe a real gem!
Also I was coming on to tell you that I had a problem with it cutting out a few years ago. It was an exhaust valve not opening properly, and choking the engine. It would start again after about 15 mins once the fumed had dissipated. Good luck!

DavenotChas Mon 22-Apr-13 09:05:18

If you're anywhere near Romford, the Vauxhall spares place in Harold Hill are excellent. Really reasonable and fair, give them a whirl.

marciaoverstrand Mon 22-Apr-13 11:34:12

We had a Vauxhall, garage was shit, car was shit, put me off Vauxhalls for life.
Sorry not helping you, hope it gets sorted but I found Vauxhall to be rip off merchants tbh.

cumfy Mon 22-Apr-13 15:31:02

If you're happy it was not cutting out, either

1. They have messed with it

2. You don't need anything done

cumfy Mon 22-Apr-13 15:34:54

So it sounds like they've fucked your car.

I'd be more worried about that than the bogus charges.

Are you sure they're not doing all this to distract you from the fact it's now cutting out ?

ddubsgirl Mon 22-Apr-13 15:57:54

We had this with ford in Sussex took 5 days to even find the fault charging £100 an hour!!! Kicked up a right fuss as it was taking the piss they wanted £150 for new battery we got our own and wasn't even that told them it could only be 2 things as my dad was a mechanic and I know a little bit about cars so don't fob me off still ended up paying over £400!

littlemisssarcastic Mon 22-Apr-13 20:06:28

Thanks for all replies. Well, went into Vauxhall today for the diagnostics test, and the service receptionist tried to charge me £95.40!! I explained that the service manager had quoted me £60 inc VAT, but the receptionist was adamant it was £95.40.
It was all sorted out when service manager came out and crossed out the £95.40 and wrote £60 on the invoice.
Anyway, apparently, it is my EGR valve. They said it showed up on diagnostics test, then the technician took it for a test drive, and it was cutting out on him, so he decided to take the EGR valve out of the car and saw that it is apparently sticking, so need that replaced.
That's going to cost £215, and receptionist has given me a verbal guarantee that this will resolve my problem, although time will tell.

I am getting it done at my local garage where I've never had problems before this incident for £140.

Hope this will resolve the problem and I can finally get back to work on Wednesday.

The service receptionist at Vauxhall appeared genuinely shocked when I told her I would not be getting the repairs done at Vauxhall. shock

januaryjojo Tue 23-Apr-13 08:31:09

No way is an EGR that expensive !!!! said it was the EGR didn't I! wink

Mine was just over £100, supplied and fitted by the AA.

The EGR is not actually necessary, you can blank them off with no issue to the car.

Blanking plates are about a fiver on eBay.

Rowgtfc72 Tue 23-Apr-13 17:59:08

Blank off your egr valve with five pence pieces, seriously. Find a how to on the internet. And register yourself with a Vauxhall owners club online(we use VVOC as we have a veccy B) where you will find lots of friendly people who will tell you what is wrong with your car, how to fix it,where to get cheap parts and maybe someone nearby with op-com so they can plug your car in and tell you whats wrong with it (going rate to plug your car in is a tenner but we bought an op-com online for thirty quid).NEVER use a Vauxhall dealer ,they can rob you blind !

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