Ask RiotACT: Need advice on who to approach about problem with car dealership

satz 13 July 2016 10

Ask RiotACT

Hi all.

I’m looking for advice about what to do/lawyer to see about an issue with the dealership that my car is currently being serviced in.

Long story short, it went in to get its windscreen changed. 3 days later they tell me that in reprogramming the car for the new windscreen (yes…it is one of those complicated cars unfortunately), one of the car’s computer system modules has blown.

They want me to cough up the $800 for the new module saying that it’s because I asked them to fit a different type of windscreen. Noting that this was an optional extra available when the car was ordered anyway.

I’ve spoken with the service manager, but have not yet got them to agree to paying for this wrecked module. Should I approach a lawyer? Or some other avenue?

Thank you, S.

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10 Responses to Ask RiotACT: Need advice on who to approach about problem with car dealership
Raging Tempest Raging Tempest 10:25 am 26 May 16

The magic words – consumer affairs.

dungfungus dungfungus 9:02 am 26 May 16

Before I buy another new car I will make it a condition that all the function reset codes are supplied as well.
With dealers always looking for ways to optimize after sales service, a “good little earner” has emerged with everything being controlled by computers.
When something goes on the blink (literally), usually, all that is required as to push the indicator stalk one way and open and close the door twice to re-set it. Dealers charge about $150 to do this.
The scam of dealers being the only ones authorised to replace batteries in remote door keys is also a “good little earner”.
Thank goodness we have forums on the internet to reveal solutions to circumvent these scams.

wildturkeycanoe wildturkeycanoe 7:26 am 26 May 16

This is the folly of putting computers in charge of things in automobiles. Unless they warned you of the risk that there could be damage to the module, I think they are still responsible for the cost of fixing the problem.

Hosinator Hosinator 8:26 pm 25 May 16

Contact the Department of Fair Trading in Canberra.

dungfungus dungfungus 10:32 pm 24 May 16

From what you have said I don’t think that you have any claim against them as unless the “optional” windscreen was ordered (as distinct from being available) at the time of purchase.
You can’t expect a free replacement after delivery just because you have changed your mind.

dungfungus dungfungus 10:25 pm 24 May 16

chewy14 said :

I’m just interested to know what an optional windscreen is? And why it’s wired to a computer?

Probably has a rain sensor to activate the wipers automatically.

Rollersk8r Rollersk8r 3:05 pm 24 May 16

I’m just interested to know what an optional windscreen is? And why it’s wired to a computer?

Holden Caulfield Holden Caulfield 1:49 pm 24 May 16

A lawyer’s going to cost you more than $800, surely.

Did you buy the car new and have this optional windscreen fitted when the car was built?

How did the module blow; was it damaged as a result of the work currently being undertaken?

At least they’re not asking you to pay for halogen fluid, I guess.

henryans henryans 11:34 am 24 May 16

Contact the manufacturer of the vehicle?


People with a legal problem can request a free 30-minute appointment which is not means tested.

Kim F Kim F 11:01 am 24 May 16

Talk to the Head Office of the brand in Aus. They are usually a bit more keen to ensure that the brand name doesn’t suffer

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