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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hi everyone so Im new to the forum. My name is Zara and in November last year I bought a 65 plate 1.4 GTC.

Ill give you a not so brief overview of the situation.

November we buy the car from a dealer. Its a 65 plate and has done 36k miles. Cost £8k

2 weeks later around 18th Nov the car tells us there is a problem with the thermostat housing, speak to dealer and they agree to pay for the repair at my own garage to save me being without a car for longer than necessary.
All appears to then be good. Fast forward to 2nd week of Jan and i happen to hear a bubbling sound from my engine bay, get home let the car cool down and check coolant, all seems fine. A few days later i happened to be coming home from work and noticed my fan kick in 8 miles into my journey and the car is overheating (this sparks alot more attention paid to journeys from here on). Odd i know as we are in 2-3 degree temperatures.
over the next few weeks we start investigating and discover the the coolant system is over pressurising and the engine temp becomes the most erratic thing in the world rising to 110/130 but instantly coming back down just as fast as it rises. this can happen several times in the space of 8 miles.

We changed the water pump as we were aware that sometimes they have a plastic impellor which can snap and stop circulating water effectively. So we made sure we got one with a metal impellor.

Overheating issues continue and boiling expansion tank continues. No water leaks anywhere, the only loss is whats steaming out the overflow, We also have white smoke but due to outside temperatures we cant really tell if its not condensation.

Anyway one day the car has a complete spaz on me temp right upto 130 and not coming back down, starts beeping at me with all the messages etc then all of a sudden the temp drops within milliseconds down to 70.
Car gets plugged in back at the garage and no error codes present. over the next few days the car runs cold.... around 60/70 engine temp and thats as hot as the heating inside gets too... Compression test done and passed perfectly (not a sniff test)

3 weeks later and now at the beginning of April the car goes into limp mode and develops a misfire along with overheating on my way to work and drops me down to 40mph on the motorway half a mile off my junction. Its 4am so i pootle in limp, then it releases itself from limp and drives "fine" again, so i continue (im about 700 yards from work at this point) come off the roundabout and back into limp we go only this time we only get 30mph... it releases itself from limp again and then another 100yards up the road as i turn into work it goes into limp and completely shuts down.

Thankfully I can leave the car at work and get it recovered whenever (hence my reason for continuing the final mile of my journey) Anyway the car now just turns over but will not start.... likely coilpack at this point maybe???

All in the last 2 weeks of March we phoned the finance company to open a complaint as we were suspecting this was a headgasket failure and pretty sure i shouldnt be experiencing this after 3000 miles and 2 months into ownership. (even though we are 5 months in at this point)

blah blah blah dealer has denied any contact from us since we drove off the forecourt and denied and work/payments were made under warranty (thermostat housing replacements for reference)

We have proof to the contrary and also videos of the temp gauge doing its thing.
Finance company want to send out an engineer to assess the car. he turns up and plugs the car in and the ONLY fault code he gets is for a misfire and says he cant do a full diagnostics because the car wont start, also tells us he doesnt believe the HG has failed as there is absolutely no cross contamination whatsoever in the oil or water.

We have now received his report 2 weeks later and it says this.......

it is our opinion that the vehicle was road legal and fit for purpose at the time of purchase and this is reaffirmed by the fact it passed an Mot 2 days prior to collection. Had a breach in the hg been present at the time of mot the engine would have been running at elevated temperatures which would result in a refusal to test. There is no evidence to suggest there was an underlying problem at the point of sale and therefore if our diagnosis is correct and the car is suffering from a breached HG that it was not present at the time of sale and is solely down to wear and tear.

First off....... in most cases a car does not run long enough to overheat during an MOT,
The dealer is a large company with an onsite repair garage and bodyshop..... the car would have been MOT'd from stone cold.

How can he categorically state to us he doesnt think its hg as no contamination or evidence of a water leak and then report his findings of hg failure in a report.

Also is it true he wouldve only got a misfire fault code even if the car doesnt start?? Can a full OBD diagnostics be carried out on a buggered engine??

Am I totally deluded for thinking that this problem couldve been in extreme early stages at time of sale and the dealership being totally unaware.... Also the fact we had coolant system work done during warranty would that not back up the suggestion that the car may have been faulty at the time of sale??

If you have read this far thank you and thanks for any replies.

2013 & 2014 astra elite 2.0cdti
21 Posts
You undertook repairs without consulting the original seller?
You have rights under the consumer act, goods fit for purpose being the clause.
But, and I say but from experience, any warranty from point of sale is in place as long as any issues or repairs are first undertaken or acknowledged by the seller, you may find you voided any warranty.
I got shafted for £9000 from my efforts of trying to rectify faults in a car I bought.
Seek professional advice is my recommendation to you.

3 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
No the repairs that were done in warranty were signed off and paid for by the dealer after speaking with them.

We only got 28 days warranty with the vehicle so when everything started up again this year, we can't be sure that the 2 problems are linked but suspect on reflection they could be so we were out of warranty therefore have not voided anything as far as I'm aware.

the consumer rights act is what the finance company advised we go with in which the engineer has now decided that there could not possibly have been a fault at the time of sale and the car was fit for purpose.
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