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Advice please....... (be warned its a long story)

Discussion in 'A3/S3 Forum (8L Chassis)' started by vrbob, Sep 19, 2007.

  1. vrbob
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    vrbob Thats no Moon, Thats a space station!

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    [Sep 19, 2007]
    Hi All,

    Not posted for a while and this is the reason why.......

    About 6-7 weeks ago i got the clutch (as it was slipping), flywheel, cambelt (plus water pump etc), gearbox oil and spark plugs replaced on my S3. I asked a few people on here about where to get it done and a garage locally was reccomended so i booked it in and got the lot done.

    The car was 100% ok and had been for the previous 12 months i have owned it and the slipping clutch i only really noticed after some advice from people on here.

    After a few hiccups (eg them getting sent the wrong flywheel etc..) they completed the work in about 4 days and i payed the bill (£1500) and drove off in my car (which now had a much lighter clutch pedal and did not slip in third gear etc.) On the way home down the motorway i noticed first that the speedo would cut out every so often and then come back to life, i also noticed that the car was idling over 1000rpm and was not at a steady idle whereas it used to be steady at 950rpm. Anyway i called up the garage and they said to drop it off to them so they could have a looksie.

    They came back saying that the speed sensor and the mass air flow sensor were faulty and would need replacing. I agreed to it and booked it in to get the bits changed. I took the car back and waited while they fitted it all. the mechanic took my car out to test it and came back cos a light had come on on the dash he put my old MAF on and it went away so they said they had a dodgy MAF and would get another ordered. I was off on holiday the next day so i agreed to leave my car with them while i was away for them to sort out.

    When i returned home i collected the car as they said it was now running perfectly (another bill of £220) and went on a short trip to my local town centre. The first thing i noticed was it still did not idle right infact it was worse as it almost cut out on me twice whilst sat at the traffic lights, but even worse was that the ESP light was now on all the time on the dash and would not go off. Plus now when at say 2500rpm in fourth it felt like the car was fighting me as if the brakes were being applied on their own but if i put my foot down it was ok. Anyway i called them back up and told them i was not happy driving the car and needed them to look at it again. This was over 4 weeks ago!!!! since then my car has spent a week waiting to be looked at then another week at a seperate specailist who can find any fault supposedly who said it was an air leak somewhere. The garage have spent hours looking for this leak but cannot find it.

    As for who's paying for all this i have no idea as i am still positive it must have something to do with them changing the clutch etc... as the car was fine until after i had it replaced. if they say i am responsible for the bill it will be huge i would guess £3000 at the least as they have spent hours working on the car plus sending it to other mechanics too.

    Anyway today they now think its the ECU not an air leak and i still don't have my car back!!

    I know that is a long winded story but as i said i am now in week 7 of it and truly pissed off!!

    Any advice would be welcome
    #1
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  3. Herby1
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    Herby1 VAG All the way

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    [Sep 19, 2007]
    holy **** mate, sounds annoying! all i can say is wait for the feedback they give you, if they give you a bill at the end of it, tell them to f*ck off basically, you have by far enough already on parts and if that was me i wouldnt of even paid for the new sensors they put in, as far as your concerned you took that car in for them to fix the specified parts you layed out to them, so therefore if anything goes wrong with it after... they are entitled to pay for any other damges which they may of caused!

    uits pathetic it really is!!!!
    #2
  4. vrbob
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    vrbob Thats no Moon, Thats a space station!

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    [Sep 19, 2007]
    I didn't want to pay the second bill but i had no way of saying if the parts were faulty because of the work they had done of not. Plus i thought that would be the end of my problems but i was sooooo wrong!!!

    I am almost 100% sure that this problem the car has must of been caused by the original work i had them do with the clutch etc.. but i am gonna have to prove this when the car is finally sorted and i don't know how i am gonnna do that!!
    #3
  5. Clach
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    Clach A3 - 1.8Ts

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    [Sep 19, 2007]
    Are the member of a goodgarage scheme etc, if so getting writing to them...I would be flexible at first, but if it persists geting more threatning!

    It always works for me. I had my last car in for three weeks and thought the same thing with the bill, but they backed down..

    Soz to hear this mate..

    Craig
    #4
  6. AndyMac
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    AndyMac Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    [Sep 19, 2007]
    £1,500 for a cambelt, service and new clutch! - that sounds like Audi main dealer pricing, where on earth did you take it?
    Cambelt service should be about £350, normal service £250 and clutch about £180 max, so that's one very expensive flywheel.
    Name & shame them!
    Hope it wasn't ABTech as they've always been pretty good on both our Audi's
    #5
  7. jojo
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    jojo Looking for Boost! Staff Member Moderator

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    [Sep 19, 2007]
    Clutch for the S3 is usually more labour intensive Andy as it requires the transferbox to be taken off!, so £250ish(clutch specialist) for labour... and we know the flywheel and clutch isn't cheap neither.
    Saying that though, I had a new clutch fitted to my S3 after the gearbox killed itself and took the clutch with it, but I never needed a new flywheel, so is that a part that actually needs to be replaced with the change?
    #6
  8. jojo
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    jojo Looking for Boost! Staff Member Moderator

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    [Sep 19, 2007]
    Saying the above though, it's still pretty expensive, £220 for a new MAF and speed sensor?! MAF is £80 from Audi and if it's the speed sensor on the gearbox, that's around £20 from Audi also, and I could change both of them in 30 minutes outside my house!
    #7
  9. vrbob
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    vrbob Thats no Moon, Thats a space station!

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    [Sep 19, 2007]
    yup it is ABTech and they have been very friendly throughout the whole process but that hasn't got my car sorted out!!

    The flywheel was very expensive close to £400 just for the part as we had to get a VW one as the original audi part they sourced turned up with the wrong amount of fixing holes. They told me my old flywheel was making some strange clicking noise as it rotated and advised to change it while they had the car apart and i trusted their judgement and went for it.

    They are a VAG specialist and they look very proffessional so i assume they are in the good garage scheme so fingers crossed it will all get sorted amicably.
    #8
  10. Aky
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    Aky Aky

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    [Sep 19, 2007]
    Sounds pretty bad - could the irratic idle be something to do with the timing being out? Name and shame.
    #9
  11. jojo
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    jojo Looking for Boost! Staff Member Moderator

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    [Sep 19, 2007]
    Well, I can say I would be pretty p!ssed off, if I parted with £1720 and still had a duff car after 7 weeks, VAG specialist or not!
    #10
  12. vrbob
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    vrbob Thats no Moon, Thats a space station!

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    [Sep 19, 2007]
    i am as you say VERY Pissed off but as i can't fix the car myself and if i got the car back i would just have to take it elsewhere to get it sorted there is not alot i can do till they fix it. At that point i will then have to start the whole who is gonna pay for this argument!!
    #11
  13. jojo
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    jojo Looking for Boost! Staff Member Moderator

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    [Sep 19, 2007]
    I can see the storage costs mounting up already! :sadlike:
    #12
  14. AndyMac
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    AndyMac Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    [Sep 19, 2007]
    Well I'm amazed. ABTech only charged me £160 for a new clutch on my 2.8Q, although they did have the gearbox out anyway so I imagine the labour was minimal.
    Last year they arranged to pick my car up from Autotechnik minus gearbox (when Autotechnik went bust), managed to track down where my exchange gearbox was, get it delivered & fitted along with a new clutch all in the space of 3 days and for less than Autotechnik were gonna charge me. So I've only got good things to say about them.
    Hopefully they'll get it sorted and be decent about the cost.
    #13
  15. vrbob
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    vrbob Thats no Moon, Thats a space station!

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    [Sep 19, 2007]
    I went to ABTech after seeing that a few people on here had used them like AndyMac and as yet as i said already they are being very helpful with the whole ordeal and i am sure they wanna fix the car as much as i me.
    I'm sure its one of those freak incidents where its cascaded out of control and I just happen to be the one who is caught up in it. i just want my car back fixed then at least we can find out what actually was the problem and then workout why it happened. As that is the only way we are gonna know who is responsible to cover the cost. This is the part i am getting very worried about as the S3 is far too complicated for my basic mechanical knowledge, So i may need more advice when the time comes.

    Will post what happens tomorrow..........
    #14
  16. jojo
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    jojo Looking for Boost! Staff Member Moderator

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    [Sep 19, 2007]
    Goodluck mate.
    #15
  17. Dave_Bayern
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    Dave_Bayern Slipping at 3.5Krpm

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    [Sep 20, 2007]
    Is the flywheel a lightened flywheel? that would account for the car 'fighting you' unless you put your foot down.

    As well as revving quicker, it also slows down quicker as a result.
    #16
  18. vrbob
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    vrbob Thats no Moon, Thats a space station!

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    [Sep 20, 2007]
    No its a standard flywheel made by LUK, the only reason it came from VW was because the flywheel the garage originally got from Audi was the wrong fitment even though the box it came in was the right part number.

    It turned out that LUK had put the wrong flywheel in the box and they were unable to get another flywheel as Audi did not have another in stock. At this point they already had the gearbox out etc... so they sourced a replacement flywheel from VW as the new beetle uses the same part. It cost more than the original part but i had no choice really as they could not put the car back together without a flywheel.

    So that was the start of this downward spiral where i am now at the bottom of!
    #17
  19. vrbob
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    vrbob Thats no Moon, Thats a space station!

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    [Sep 20, 2007]
    Todays update:

    Not really much more i can tell as i have spoken to the garage and they have said that the car is now with another VAG specialist and they are still testing it but no real news as yet.

    Hopefully ( I keep saying this) the car will be fixed 2moro if not its another weekend without my car!!
    #18
  20. [Dave B]
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    [Dave B] Daddy

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    [Sep 20, 2007]
    Good luck mate.
    #19
  21. vrbob
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    vrbob Thats no Moon, Thats a space station!

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    [Sep 21, 2007]
    Todays update :

    My Dad actually spoke to the garage earlier on today as i was busy at work. So i have only found out the info secondhand from him but it looks like they are convinced that it is my ECU causing the problem. By this i mean that they have taken out my ECU and sent it to the Isle of Wight (why here i have no idea) to be tested and repaired!! So my car is now without its brain and i defo won't have it back this weekend, infact as my ECU is now of on its holidays i have no idea when it will return.

    Has anyone else heard of an ECU fault like the one my car has got?? cos all the ECU talk i have read on here usually says if the ECU is faulty the car won't even start at all. Plus of course now comes the burning question if it is the ECU thats buggered how did it happen? cos it can't of been like this all the time i was driving the car before it went to the garage and yet it had the fault the day i collected the car after the clutch etc was done.

    Any ideas people?? if so any suggestions would be greatly recieved.

    Oh and thanks for all the support so far its nice to know that people are wishing me luck in getting this sorted.
    #20
  22. vrbob
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    vrbob Thats no Moon, Thats a space station!

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    [Sep 22, 2007]
    No more news today as its saturday.....

    Still open to any advice though
    #21
  23. LaSarthe&Back
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    LaSarthe&Back Member

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    [Sep 22, 2007]
    Christ on a bike dude, some serious problems there. I hope they're working on your car every hour they're open!

    Your engine will have had to come into several states if disassembly, for all that work to be done.


      • They could have got the belt timing wrong, which would account for dodgy idle, but if they're as reputable as they seem, I doubt they'd have messed this up.

        The holding back until you put your foot down can be caused by the MAF, and /or the coolant temperature sensor. The MAF is causing issues on mine at the moment, and sensor has caused problems in the past; idling by itself at 2500rpm.

        They will have had to take your turbo to intercooler pipe(s) off to get to the waterpump and mis-replacement of this can cause it to leak when the turbo spools up - roughly 2-3krpm.

    I doubt the ECU is faulty, unless they've FUBAR'd it somehow!

    BTW ask if the coolant sensor is a green top one (if this applies to S3).

    All the best with it.
    Andy
    #22
  24. vrbob
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    vrbob Thats no Moon, Thats a space station!

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    [Sep 23, 2007]
    Thanks for the advice.

    Supposedly they have gone back through all the work they have done and rechecked everything including the belt timing. They seem to be convinced its the ECU now especially as they have taken it out of the car and sent it away to be tested and repaired.

    My guess is if it is the ECU that it must of got FUBAR'd during the clutch etc.. replacement i don't know how this would of happened but the car defo did not have this issue before. Anyone got any ideas on how the ECU could get knackered??

    Will check about the sensor 2moro when i check in with the garage for an update.

    thanks again for the advice and best wishes
    #23
  25. auroan
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    auroan Active Member

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    [Sep 24, 2007]
    With regards to you proving they knacked the car..... checking the trading standards info etc. From what I understand "The Garage" have to prove that the faults weren't caused by the work they did.
    #24
  26. vrbob
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    vrbob Thats no Moon, Thats a space station!

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    [Sep 24, 2007]
    Todays update :

    ECU still on its hols so no actual info on if it was faulty or not yet. The garage are contacting them 2moro morning to see if they have found anything as yet.

    Thanks Auroan i will check into the trading standards info because if that is true i think it will make my life easier, them having to prove they did not cause the prob rather than me proving they did.
    #25
  27. vrbob
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    vrbob Thats no Moon, Thats a space station!

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    [Sep 26, 2007]
    No news as yet......

    Still waiting to hear back on the ECU people. This phone call tag is really bloody annoying!!! half way through week 8 and don't seem any closer to getting my car back!!
    #26
  28. jojo
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    jojo Looking for Boost! Staff Member Moderator

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    [Sep 26, 2007]
    :sadlike:
    #27
  29. vrbob
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    vrbob Thats no Moon, Thats a space station!

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    [Sep 27, 2007]
    Gutted :

    Just got back from the garage, according to the people testing my ECU its faulty as it has some sort of voltage error. This according to them is unrepairable and therefore my car will need a replacement ECU.
    This will cost £318 + VAT,oh and of course there is only one in the country in Milton Keynes and as yet this has still not actually been confirmed to be physically there as it only showing up on the computer so far.
    If it turns out that this part is actually not there then they have to arder one directly from the factory which will take 7 - 10 working days !!!!!!!!!!!.

    Still no idea of costs and they are only 99% sure that the ECU is actually causing the problem. I am so pissed off and stressed about this whole thing i just wish the car would just get nicked, burnt , blown up or something so i could claim on the insurance and buy something else.

    I just can't believe this is happeneing as i was only trying to do the right thing and get my car in good condition before i got it remapped and i just seem to be getting furthur and furthur away form this.

    At this point in time owning an S3 was the worst decision i have ever made in buying a car!!
    #28
  30. TheSpaceCowboy
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    TheSpaceCowboy Member

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    [Sep 28, 2007]
    You feel like that now and I understand it, when things have gone wrong on my cars I got so annoyed I just wanted to get rid of it but then things get fixed and everythings right with the world! Trust me once its fixed you'll have a perma-grin on your face for the day.:jump:
    #29
  31. vrbob
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    vrbob Thats no Moon, Thats a space station!

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    [Oct 1, 2007]
    The saga continues...........

    Well here is week 9 and still no idea when i will get my car back! when i spoke to the garage last week we were told that the ECU was faulty (see my post above).

    Anyway as they were trying to source a replacement ECU all i could do was wait and hope there is one in the country and not have to wait for a factory ordered part.

    So I did not contact them on Friday (plus i was ill anyway so stayed in bed) and contacted them today, to see if they had managed to track down an ECU for my car. Only to be told by the garage that they have been trying to source one but Audi have a "global communication problem" (i would guess something computer related) and therefore they cannot get any info whatsoever!!!

    Has anyone heard of this or does this comunication problem just surround my car and anything related to it??

    If anyone knows of where i could source a my 2000 Audi S3 210bhp APY engine ECU please let me know cos at this rate if i don't sort something out i will never see my car back on the road again.

    Until then my car is still sat in the corner of a garage with no brains not knowing when it will be allowed outside again (it does look very unhappy).
    #30
  32. dan_a3
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    dan_a3 Member

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    [Oct 1, 2007]
    Could the fast idle not be something to do with the re-learn stage of the ECU when the battery is disconnected for a while? And the speedo sensor, i would imagine it would of had to be removed/unplugged for the gearbox to come out to do the clutch, maybe it hasnt been put back in properly? Just ideas, everything else seems to be covered.
    #31
  33. vrbob
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    vrbob Thats no Moon, Thats a space station!

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    [Oct 2, 2007]
    Cheers for the advice Dan A3 but i think that has all been checked and rechecked, infact the guys at the garage have taken my car apart and put it all back together about 3 times by now!!

    Anyway have had our daily chat with the Garage and they have explained that Audi have put in a new stock check system worldwide in august and there have been a few teething troubles. Well today the system is back up n running so they have placed an order for my new ECU and if the computer is right and they do actually have one it will be here 2moro.

    So might finally see the light at the end of the tunnel soon and actually get my car back working and then onto the fun n games of the bill :crying:
    #32
  34. vrbob
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    vrbob Thats no Moon, Thats a space station!

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    [Oct 4, 2007]
    Update :

    ECU has turned up at the garage which is some good news at last, so its off to audi 2moro to be reprogrammed for my car.

    So might have some more answers once it has been fitted.

    fingers crossed
    #33
  35. voorhees
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    voorhees Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    [Oct 4, 2007]
    what a mare...bet your stressed up to f**k
    Check out the amy whinehouse thread in the youtube section to cheer yourself up
    #34
  36. Gti Jazz Blue
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    Gti Jazz Blue Active Member VCDS Map User

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    [Oct 5, 2007]
    There was me wondering if you had an earth problem from the gearbox coming off.

    I hope that the ECU resolves the issue, personally I would have tried to source a second hand one, or in the time taken you could have probably had your existing ECU repaired.

    Good Luck.

    Paul
    #35
  37. jojo
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    jojo Looking for Boost! Staff Member Moderator

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    [Oct 5, 2007]
    I'm almost afraid to open this thread, fill us on on the bill at the end Bob, hope the new ECU sorts out all your problems mate.
    #36
  38. vrbob
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    vrbob Thats no Moon, Thats a space station!

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    [Oct 5, 2007]
    Holy sh1t!!!! :

    Goddam idiots have sent my car to audi and then when phoned today to find out when i could come get the car we are told that the guy dealing with my car went on holiday today and won't return till THURSDAY!!!!!!!

    Bunch of incompetent muppets the guy we spoke to today says he can contact the guy on holiday but not until monday so here comes week 10 without my car, and we still don't know if the new ECU has fixed the problem.

    I really can't believe this **** and still no end in sight.

    The stress of this whole situation is getting unbearable now and am permanently in a sh1tty mood, G/F is getting well pissed off with me cos i am so unhappy yet there is nothing i can do to sort it out.

    Thanks again to all of you giving moral support and good wishes as at least thats something for now.... But if this does not get resolved soon then i might start tyring to arrange some sort of mob (i can provide sticks with nails in them and pitchforks) to come with me to ABTech and get my car sorted by force.

    :asskicking:
    #37
  39. jojo
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    jojo Looking for Boost! Staff Member Moderator

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    [Oct 5, 2007]
    Remember not to waste any money on the Lotto for tomorrow night, don't think your luck is in mate.
    #38
  40. Felon
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    Felon Slightly odd.

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    [Oct 5, 2007]
    I am not mechanical enough to comment on the work that's been done but it sounds like a mess. I and most of the people on this board clearly would not expect any garage to behave like this. What I would do, is try and get in touch with the MD of this business. Just the MD - don't be fobbed off by anyone else - write to him if you have to and explain the situation. Say that you're not happy and that you would like him to review the work that the garage has done, including all their communication to you. Then ask him to propose a reasonable settlement for the work that has been done to date including a definite date for completion. I've been here before - not with an Audi and not with this garage - but if you take a business-like approach to trying to sort the problem out, to the person who is most likely to be the most business-like, then I would be very surprised if you didn't get a sympathetic ear. OK, maybe i have too much faith in human nature but nowhere on this thread have i heard that this outfit is dodgy. If that fails and you're still unhappy, I would go talk to Trading Standards.
    Good luck!!
    #39
  41. naefeart_A4
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    naefeart_A4 Bonkers

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    [Oct 5, 2007]
    Hope this new ecu finally brings an end to your troubles fella.

    Nothing worse than the 'we'll replace stuff until your car works' garage merry-go-round. Been there, got the t-shirt.

    N
    #40

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