Block exemptions and the rules governing the servicing and repair of cars - Renault Forums :: Independent Renault forum

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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 6th February 2007
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Block exemptions and the rules governing the servicing and repair of cars

Yep - that old chestnut again...

The subject has been raised before, sometimes by me, but Helen is now experiencing problems getting a repair carried out under warranty on the SEAT Ibiza and I'd like to know where we stand legally

The car is clonking going over bumps. Our local garage has investigated and thinks that the suspension bushes need replacing. Helen took it to our local SEAT dealer to be looked at under the 3rd year dealer warranty. They reckon they have greased the bushes, can not find a problem and are unwilling to carry out any more investigations into the problem. The service manager (Helen thinks) asked her to bring it back when the problem was more apparent as they were unable to find a fault, but were willing to admit that it was making the clonking noise. Not a particularly satisfactory outcome. The car has only done about 13,000 miles since new and we didn't expect to have ANY problems with it

Not a problem. Let's have the local independent garage carry out the repairs instead. Helen emailed SEAT:
Originally Posted by Helen

I am the second owner of the above vehicle and purchased it with warranty remaining. I have had a problem with my vehicle which I have taken to a dealer but received an unsatisfacotry response. I am now goingg to take my car into my local VAT registered garage for them to make the repairs. I would therefore appreciate details on how the warranty operates outside of a main dealer.

Thank you.
A bit curt, but what do expect with an email contact form?

Response received back from SEAT:
Originally Posted by SEAT
Thank you for email of 2nd February 2007. Please accept my apologies for the delay in responding.

I can confirm that in order to maintain the warranty on your vehicle all warranty work can only be carried out by a SEAT approved dealership. Should you have repairs carried out by a non SEAT approved dealership they will charge you for the repairs.
Now then - are we being fobbed off here? I thought that the block exemptions rules introduced in October 2003 mean that the car can be serviced and repaired outside the franchised dealer network if:

a) The service interval is adhered to
b) The parts used are of comparable or better quality to that available from the manufacturer

I've looked in the warranty booklet and this states that in order to pursue a claim, the vehicle should be taken to a SEAT dealer but it does NOT say that the work can not be carried out by an independent, non-franchised dealer

Does anyone have any advice or experiences they can share of dealing with this situation?

Thanks in advance
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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 6th February 2007
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Their response seems to be a bit ambiguous. I can't quite figure out the point they're trying to make.

They half-appear to be saying "If you have your car serviced elsewhere, you will void the warranty." We know that to be wrong, though you'd have to go down that line and try to make a claim to prove the point.

What they're definitely saying is that if you have this fault repaired outside of the dealer network, they have no intention of reimbursing you financially. Unfortunately, they're probably within their rights to do that.

Are there any other Seat dealers you could take it to for a second opinion? It's a pity H&R Wernick aren't still around on Bury New Road. They were my Mazda dealer (Seat too) and I could never fault the service that they provided. Apparently they went into liquidation in 2001
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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 6th February 2007
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Yep - we can try Lookers in Stockport. I used them for a second opinion when they still had the MG Rover franchise and they were very good. It's the usual problem - we're both very busy and having already had it at the dealer once we'd like to know it's actually going to be repaired before we rearrange a working day to get it sorted
post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 6th February 2007
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I'm not really sure as I haven't looked into this but my understanding is that your warranty will NOT be void if the car is serviced anywhere that is VAT registered, as long as the car is serviced according to the manufacturers specification and due schedule - So having it serviced at non-dealers does NOT void your warranty.

However, if you require any work done under the warranty, then I think it is a little different. I think you would probably need to seek their prior authorisation if you intend to get warranty work done elsewhere, which is probably fair since they will be paying for it, or maybe not so fair if you think about the inconvenience it causes.

Just my 2-pence...
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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 6th February 2007
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Yep - I'm beginning to think you are both right. I think I presumed that it opened up ALL aspects of servicing and repairs, but it might not be the case. I guess it's over to Lookers then

Cheers folks. Any other info or links gratefully appreciated as I might turn this into a proper article for the FAQ if I can get enough info...

block , cars , exemptions , governing , repair , rules , servicing

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