Car Woes

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by Shaun.P, Apr 28, 2006.

  1. Shaun.P macrumors 68000


    Jul 14, 2003
    Omicron Persei 8
    Hi there,

    Here is my huge rant about a car I recently bought, soon after passing my test.

    I bought a Vauxhall / Opel Corsa 1.0L Club 12V [Silver] last Saturday. It's an X reg [2000 model] and has done 56,000 miles / 90,123 km. It has full electrics, Power Steering, electric windows, heated mirrors, etc. I paid £1750 / $3152 for it, and my insurance for 10 months cost £1026 / $1848 [Third Party].

    After purchasing it, the engine control light came on a few times. I took it to my local garage which:

    A. Gave the car a full service and,
    B. Read the onboard computer which records faults (this tells you why the engine control light came on, and what is wrong with the car).

    The full service and reading the computer came to £100 / $180. The full service and reading the computer revealed:

    1. The engine control light came on because the car needs an 'EGR valve' which will cost roughly £150 / $270 + labour of £30 / $54 - this regulates something in the car. The car does not give a smooth ride - and after researching on the internet this is the cause apparently. The guy reset the computer so the memory was clean - he said the fault might not show up for a while. However today when driving, the light came back on so I will definitely need to get this part.

    2. The two front tyres were at the legal requirements and needed changed.

    3. The back-right tyre was on the wrong way (wrong rotation), and on that side the spring is broken.

    4. Hand break is sticking - either need a new one or this one needs greased up.

    5. The spare tyre is flat.

    My Dad has an account set up with this tyre place, so I got 2 new front tyres. They tried to fix the spare tyre but said it was worn away and wasted. So, they took the back right tyre off and put that in the boot as a spare, and put a new tyre on the back right. The car was balanced, the wheel valves were added but the car could not be aligned - due to the broken spring.

    Today, I woke up to find the back right tyre flat. I filled it up with air and headed back to the tyre place they said it was a faulty valve on the wheel so they replaced it.

    On Monday the spring is getting fixed and so is the hand break - probably costing all in around £80 / $144. I am going to ask him to order in the EGR valve. However I have been researching the problem online and some people have changed the valve and it has not helped, and sometimes the Air Mass Flow needs changed or something which costs like £350 / $630

    I am only 18 years old - I paid the insurance in a lump sum as if you wanted to pay it month it was around £250 / $450 more expensive. Have I bought a rubbish car? Is my specific choice riddled with faults and hardware faults? Why are all of these models silver?

    I am extremely depressed. I have spent a lot of money > £3000 / $5400.

    I do understand things go wrong with cars but I just feel a bit depressed about all of this y'know? When I buy something, I expect it to serve me well i.e my iBook.

    What are you opinions on this? Should I just relax? Do you have a similar car / experience?

    Thanks for your time.
  2. kahos macrumors member

    Dec 2, 2005
    You didnt get it inspected before you bought it?
  3. Sdashiki macrumors 68040


    Aug 11, 2005
    Behind the lens
    i wont even begin to say I told you so...but...

    if you buy a used car, even from a friend, without a third party mechanic looking at it, you deserve everything that goes wrong with it.

    thats the used car biz, once paid for its YOUR problem.
  4. FocusAndEarnIt macrumors 601


    May 29, 2005
    Unfortunately Sdashiki is right. :(

    Really sucks about your car, though. :(
  5. UKnjb macrumors 6502a


    May 23, 2005
    London, UK
    Profound sympathies.

    1. Did you buy it from a registered dealer or from a private seller?
    If a registered dealer, then you have in-built protection.
    2. Were any formal representations made by the seller as to the condition of the car?
    if you have proof that you were sold something as being in state 'A' but it turned out it was in (worse) state 'B', then you have a legal redress.
    3. Have you gone back to the seller and spoken directly about what has happened?
    Worth a punt to see what they say, not so?

    If you didn't get it inspected, and it was all a grey area from above, as Kahos pointed out, then sorry, but it's all down to you. Caveat emptor
  6. Abstract macrumors Penryn


    Dec 27, 2002
    Location Location Location
    The only good thing about this experience is that you had this happen on a cheap car. In the future, if you buy a nicer used car, you'll know exactly what to do. Just a part of the learning experience.
  7. mpw Guest

    Jun 18, 2004
    If you buy a car expect to lose a truck load of money AND have a bunch of stress with it.

    I bought a brand new Peugeot for £15k and it was nothing but trouble, its been back to the garage over 20 times and been called for 6 recalls. Unfortunately the official franchised dealer I bought it from had a crap service dept. and because of this Peugeot UK washed their hands of it saying they don't guarantee their dealer network as competent and as the car had been badly maintained the warranty was voided, ***ts.
  8. baby duck monge macrumors 68000

    baby duck monge

    Feb 16, 2003
    Memphis, TN
    That sounds like a lawsuit waiting to happen. What the F is the point of having a franchise if there's no oversite of your franchisees?
  9. floriflee macrumors 68030


    Dec 21, 2004
    As awful as the experience is you'll certainly know better for next time. The used car buying process is a tricky one. I definitely agree with getting it inspected by another mechanic that you trust. Our car was bought at CarMax where they give you 5 days/300 miles after you purchase to change your mind about the car without penalty. In addition, they also give you a 30 day warranty where you can get the car inspected by another mechanic and then they will repair all the things wrong the mechanic found for free. That definitely gave us peace of mind with the purchase. I don't know if there are places like that in the U.K., but it's definitely worth looking into in the future.
  10. Les Kern macrumors 68040

    Les Kern

    Apr 26, 2002
    Yikes. Bought a possible lemon. Bought it without having it inspected.
    I never had an experience like that. While I feel your pain, unfortunately you brought this down on yourself. Lesson learned, eh?
  11. FireArse macrumors 6502a

    Oct 29, 2004

    Stick to japanese cars. There's a reason as to why they're always voted the most reliable.

    Corsa? They're always used as hire-cars or worse, accident hire vehicules. Good God, would stay a mile from one of those.

    When you buy second hand - u must check every detail. Tyres - these must have been looked at and discussed - these days people don't want to get their hands dirty - im 23 now, back when I was a kid, I'd learn everything there was to know about cars.

    I was asked to oversee a car for a mate - the only thing that went wrong with it was an electric window motor - £100 from VW. Everything else spot on for over 9months.

    Stick to Japanese cars - yes the parts can be dearer, but you are less likely to need to get them unless u hit something.
  12. mpw Guest

    Jun 18, 2004
    Unfortunately the dealer went bust so there's no money to sue for. Peugeot UK knew this and knew my problems a year before the dealer went bust but did nothing until the dealer closed, they then knew they could blame him void the warranty and say that they'd support any claim against the now defunct dealer in court knowing I can't sue someone with no money.:mad: :mad:

    My Honda arrives next week:)
  13. Shaun.P thread starter macrumors 68000


    Jul 14, 2003
    Omicron Persei 8

    The car was bought from a private seller. The receipt says:


    Sale of Vauxhall Corsa (X806 WFS)
    To Shaun Priest
    Paid Cash
    Sold as condition seen
    Driven and tested
    No warranty given or implied

    It has my Dads signiture and the guy who was selling it at the bottom.

    I have found the part (EGR valve) on eBay for £80 new, so that is going to save me a lot of money.

    As long as everything is OK after this is fixed I'll be pleased...
  14. calebjohnston macrumors 68000


    Jan 24, 2006
  15. mad jew Moderator emeritus

    mad jew

    Apr 3, 2004
    Adelaide, Australia

    Because it's used?
  16. Oryan macrumors 6502a


    Apr 1, 2005
    Lincoln, NE
  17. Chundles macrumors G4


    Jul 4, 2005
    Yah, we use Tyre here too.

    Tyre - rubber thingymabob what your car runs on
    Tire - to become tired

  18. UKnjb macrumors 6502a


    May 23, 2005
    London, UK
    Sorry that you seem to be pretty well stuffed on this one. You (or your father) have agreed in the receipt that you bought the car in its present condition and that no implications were made as to its road- or any other-worthiness. Further you have driven and tested it yourself and agreed to buy it, thereby accepting that the condition of the car was acceptable to you. As the vendor explicitly states that there is no warranty ---- oh dear!

    I hope that you get everything sorted and that you enjoy the car when it is. Please remember the AA, or whoever, to check your next car out before buying. :)
  19. Baron58 macrumors 6502

    Feb 19, 2004
    Should have had this done before you bought it.

    You could have seen this simply by looking at them.

    You could have seen this simply by looking at them.

    You didn't test-drive it? (It's probably the cable/linkage that needs adjustment or lubrication.)

    You didn't check it?

    Ahhh, naievete....

    Rule No. 1: Trust (or not, whatever), but verify.
    Rule No. 2: Don't buy crap.
    Rule No. 3: You must make informed decisions/choices, not blind ones.
    Rule No. 4: Take responsibility for your own decisions/choices.

    Yeah, your situation sucks, but you did it to yourself.
  20. Baron58 macrumors 6502

    Feb 19, 2004

    I'm...'re.... American.

    ...Which makes you a minority in the English-speaking world. American spelling will get you failed in school in most parts of the world.

    It's called "English" for a reason.
  21. savar macrumors 68000


    Jun 6, 2003
    District of Columbia
    Right on. I got a used Integra a few months ago and it's awesome. Great price, looks good, fun to drive, excellent condition, I'll be able to drive it for 10 years if I choose to.
  22. Shaun.P thread starter macrumors 68000


    Jul 14, 2003
    Omicron Persei 8
    We knew the 2 tyres at the front needed replaced and the car has 2 very minor dents which got us £250 off the price of the car.

    I have a HPI report with the car which tells you the following:

    Condition Date Check : Nothing Recorded
    Stolen Data Check : Nothing Recorded
    Additional DVLA Data : Nothing Recorded
    Finance Data Check : Nothing Recorded
    High Risk Data Check: Nothing Recorded.

    I have checked the MOT certificate online and it corresponds with the document I received from the seller - i.e. the MOT certificate is not a fake one.

    The car still would have passed its MOT by needing an EGR valve.

    I never drove the car as I learned to drive in a Ford Fiesta and since the place was busy, I let my Dad drive it as I was afraid I would stall it.

    I will be perfectly happy if when I fix everything that's wrong with it that it serves me well.

    All the tyres have been fixed etc so all that is left to do is :

    Stop handbreak from sticking (handbreak feels fine to me)
    New Off Side Rear Spring (my Dad checked that no springs were broken with the car by leaning heavily on each of the 4 corners of the car and letting go; he told me if it kept bouncing, it would need a new spring - obviously this method never worked for my car!).

    Then all that leaves is the EGR valve - which I can get for £80 delivered on eBay. The garage told me that this is a very common part to go in the car I have.

    The engine control light did not come on when we test drove the car - or from Edinburgh to Irvine (approx. 2 hours). What is weird is: when the computer records a fault, the light is meant to stay on, or blink or something. The light in my car comes on for a short time and goes away and might now come back for a while.

    Please remember the car is 6 years old also. If I never got the service done, the only thing I knew would have been wrong with it were the tyres. I wanted the service done so I knew what was wrong with it. All of the faults I have listed I would not have been able to tell by driving the car - so If I never got the service, I would not have been any the wiser of these problems with the car.

    I could have choosen to be ignorant and driven the car and 'assumed' everything was OK with it but I didn't and at least now I know what needs done to it.

    We drove 2 hours to Edinburgh to get it - getting a mechanic to check it did not cross my mind. Do you get a PC technician when you intend to buy a second hand computer? NO! You try it out for yourself. And trying out this car revealed only one problem to me and my Dad - the 2 front tyres.
  23. mikemodena macrumors 6502a


    May 30, 2005
    I underdstand your situation, with my first car I was so excited that I blatantly refused to look for problems so that way my mom would let me buy it. I had a 93 Elantra and it SUCKED. $800 car, lasted 3 months. I learned my lesson when the brakes went, then on the highway the engine blew 2 days later after paying $300 for the brakes. After that we went to a small dealer (a bigger garage that sells used cars, but atleast you get a warranty and they fix any problems you find before you come back to pay for it) and I got a great 98 Escort. No problems yet and I've just begun to customize it a little. I've done racing pedals, new audio system, steering wheel cover, neons under the seats, etc.
  24. Shaun.P thread starter macrumors 68000


    Jul 14, 2003
    Omicron Persei 8

    They fixed everything today. Car was running great when come home. However, when I went to go out later on today I put the car into reverse, and when I was moving the gear stick up it was making a loud griding high pitched noise. So, I switched the car off, put it into reverse with the car off, and started it up. I then drove and stopped again and tried to get it into reverse - again the high pitched griding noise, a reving sort of noise. Then the car wouldn't even go into any gear!

    I have phoned my garage and they are coming to tow it at half five I think it needs a new clutch.

    I am cursed with this car aren't I?

    My garage says the clutch is something that just goes - you don't get much warning. I was pleased driving from the garage as the car was working great. Why did this need to happen? This car situation may end with me writing a post in the 'Have you seriously made a suicide attempt' thread. :mad:
  25. aquajet macrumors 68020

    Feb 12, 2005

    That's bunk. You'll usually get plenty of warning that it's on its way out.

    Does anybody know if this vehicle has a hydraulic clutch? If not, it could be just a simple adjustment to fix the problem.

    Edit: After a quick search, it appears Opel began using a hydraulic clutch in 2002. My guess would be the clutch cable slipped and, as such, the clutch no longer fully disengages after depressing the clutch pedal. If this is the case, it should be a very simple fix. But I could be wrong...

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