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  • FIRST POST
    • smitkit
    • By smitkit 3rd Oct 17, 11:28 AM
    • 9Posts
    • 0Thanks
    smitkit
    What are our rights for scratches on second hand car?
    • #1
    • 3rd Oct 17, 11:28 AM
    What are our rights for scratches on second hand car? 3rd Oct 17 at 11:28 AM
    Hi

    Two weeks ago we purchased an £11k second hand car (2015 reg) from Bristol Street Motors. We're really happy with the car, but last week noticed there are small circular scratches all down one side - having googled it, they appear to be from a buffing machine. It makes the side door panels look dull as well as the actual scratches.

    We only noticed them when very bright sunlight was shining on the car. We've looked for the scratches again in just 'normal' sunlight and you can't see them, even when we know what and where to look. I've tried shining a light on the door panel, but you still can't see them. Google tells me this is quite common, especially for darker cars with this type of scratch (ours is black).

    There were a few small 'proper' scratches on the car when we did the test drive and the dealer said they would get buffed out before picking it up. When we picked up the vehicle, you couldn't see these scratches.

    I rang the dealer and she said that she had seen them when she took the car into the shop to get the 'proper' scratches sorted out, which I assume means these small circular buffing marks must have been there before the dealership took possession of the car. When she picked the car up and checked it over for scratches, she couldn't see these circular scratches, so assumed they had been sorted.

    She's asked us to take the car back in tomorrow so the paint guy can see what else he can do, but she said she didn't think there was much they could do, because the paint had already been taken down a few layers.

    If we had seen these scratches on the car we wouldn't have bought the vehicle, but would have asked them to source one that was the same make and model etc, just in better condition. If they can repair the scratches we're more than happy to keep the car.

    I have two questions:

    1) What are the options for repair that they should be looking at? I've never had to have a re-spray before, but is that something we should be expecting them to offer/pay for (and how much would a re-spray on two doors cost anyway)? I don't want a temporary solution (polished by them now, but something we'll have to pay for for the next 10 years).

    2) Do we have any rights to return the vehicle and get a refund? I've read about the Consumer Act, but that appears to be faults on the car, and I'm not sure scratches would be deemed a fault?

    We really love the car, and would be happy to pay something towards a permanent solution, but I feel the dealer should be partly responsible as the scratches were there (and noticed by the dealer), just not evident when we picked up the vehicle.

    As an aside, we are taking the car back to them tomorrow anyway as the engine management light has come on - they are looking at it and it will be repaired for free as it's within the 30 days purchase period. We're working on the assumption that it's a one-off fixable fault, and not a major issue.

    Thanks in advance for any help you can give.

    Smitkit

    TLR Only noticed scratches on new car after taking ownership - what are our options?
Page 1
    • Lorian
    • By Lorian 3rd Oct 17, 12:06 PM
    • 4,123 Posts
    • 2,258 Thanks
    Lorian
    • #2
    • 3rd Oct 17, 12:06 PM
    • #2
    • 3rd Oct 17, 12:06 PM
    I can't tell you anything about the legality of your situation, but what you are looking at sounds like what's known as swirls.

    This is one thread (there are plenty others) with some usefull stuff in it

    http://www.meguiarsonline.com/forums/showthread.php?7011-How-To-Remove-Swirls-By-Hand#RdPTzP4Rdw7hbWEY.97

    I think it takes an expert detailer to address them.
    • wgl2014
    • By wgl2014 3rd Oct 17, 12:36 PM
    • 414 Posts
    • 243 Thanks
    wgl2014
    • #3
    • 3rd Oct 17, 12:36 PM
    • #3
    • 3rd Oct 17, 12:36 PM
    Bear in mind you have a second hand car that will have unavoidable marks and scratches on.
    If you can't actually see them in normal conditions is it a problem? Only you can decide that.
    Swirl marks should be relatively easy to buff out by someone who is competent, I would go to a professional detailer if you want a perfect finish. As for a respray, IMHO no chance unless you pay for it and it won't be cheap.
    I think you would struggle to reject the car based on some hardly visible marks on the paint.
    • AdrianC
    • By AdrianC 3rd Oct 17, 1:05 PM
    • 15,713 Posts
    • 14,030 Thanks
    AdrianC
    • #4
    • 3rd Oct 17, 1:05 PM
    • #4
    • 3rd Oct 17, 1:05 PM
    You have bought a two year old used car. The question, if the dealer aren't willing to sort such minor cosmetics as goodwill, is whether this swirling is somehow unexpected for goods of the age and apparent condition.

    I'd suggest that the fact that you didn't even notice them for a week, and they're only visible in very specific light conditions, means that you'd struggle to get any kind of recompense if you went legal.

    If the dealer don't sort them, then put your time and effort into taking the car to a decent detailer instead. It's a slippery slope if you want to keep a daily-use car to such a high standard. There's no need to respray the car - these issues are easily solved with very high-standard polishing.
    • neilmcl
    • By neilmcl 3rd Oct 17, 1:18 PM
    • 10,287 Posts
    • 7,213 Thanks
    neilmcl
    • #5
    • 3rd Oct 17, 1:18 PM
    • #5
    • 3rd Oct 17, 1:18 PM
    I have two questions:

    1) What are the options for repair that they should be looking at? I've never had to have a re-spray before, but is that something we should be expecting them to offer/pay for (and how much would a re-spray on two doors cost anyway)? I don't want a temporary solution (polished by them now, but something we'll have to pay for for the next 10 years).

    2) Do we have any rights to return the vehicle and get a refund? I've read about the Consumer Act, but that appears to be faults on the car, and I'm not sure scratches would be deemed a fault?
    Originally posted by smitkit
    1) It's sounds like swirls or polishing defects that should easily be corrected without the need for any re-spray. Have a look around for a decent local detailer who offers a paint correction service. It shouldn't be that expensive if you just want the door doing.

    2) You had every opportunity to inspect the car in terms of it's physical appearance and it is a 2 year old car don't forget. I don't think you can fall back on your consumer rights with this one.
    • smitkit
    • By smitkit 3rd Oct 17, 4:47 PM
    • 9 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    smitkit
    • #6
    • 3rd Oct 17, 4:47 PM
    Thank you for the feedback
    • #6
    • 3rd Oct 17, 4:47 PM
    Hi again

    Many thanks to everyone who has replied, it has been really helpful.

    It has occurred to me that the other side of the car could be just as bad, but until we've seen it in the same strong sunlight, we won't know. Thanks for the suggestions of taking it to a detailer - I've been in touch with a local one who has quoted £75 for both doors, which we're happy to pay to get it sorted. I'm still going to try my luck with the dealer, but £75 in the grand scheme of things is fine.

    Thanks again

    Smitkit
    • chrisw
    • By chrisw 3rd Oct 17, 5:43 PM
    • 1,634 Posts
    • 897 Thanks
    chrisw
    • #7
    • 3rd Oct 17, 5:43 PM
    • #7
    • 3rd Oct 17, 5:43 PM
    That's the problem with dark colours, swirls are virtually impossible to avoid.

    I've had my dark grey car since new and been very careful but it's still picked up swirl marks over the last 3 years. The dealers washed it after a service which didn't help but keeping a sponge and chamois completely grit and dust free is impossible.

    An automatic or local hand car wash is asking for trouble.
    • debtdebt
    • By debtdebt 3rd Oct 17, 6:45 PM
    • 327 Posts
    • 210 Thanks
    debtdebt
    • #8
    • 3rd Oct 17, 6:45 PM
    • #8
    • 3rd Oct 17, 6:45 PM
    A decent detailer will be able to rectify that. Take readings of the paint depth with a gauge, flatten down the swirl marks with rotary machine and polish, then they'll be able to restore the shine with a decent wax. I doubt the selling garage will have someone with those skills. They might just use a polish/wax with lots of fillers in to remedy the problem which will only be a short term temporary fix.
    • neilmcl
    • By neilmcl 3rd Oct 17, 7:32 PM
    • 10,287 Posts
    • 7,213 Thanks
    neilmcl
    • #9
    • 3rd Oct 17, 7:32 PM
    • #9
    • 3rd Oct 17, 7:32 PM
    That's the problem with dark colours, swirls are virtually impossible to avoid.

    I've had my dark grey car since new and been very careful but it's still picked up swirl marks over the last 3 years. The dealers washed it after a service which didn't help but keeping a sponge and chamois completely grit and dust free is impossible.

    An automatic or local hand car wash is asking for trouble.
    Originally posted by chrisw
    No wonder given you're using a sponge and chamois.
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