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Bought the S3 less than a week ago...have a problem. How should I deal with it??

S3Lol Jul 29, 2009

  1. S3Lol

    S3Lol Registered User


    Right, Ill start from the beginning!

    I bought my S3 last tuesday (21st July) from Nottingham (I live in Cambridge). It was bought from an independant dealer and therefore was sold with a third party warranty. FSH, 82,000 miles, 52 plate, Timing belt done at 74k, decent price. I thought it was a good deal so I went for it.

    I had been driving 2 days (120 miles on motorway back from nottingham and no more than 30 milles on coutry road and town) when I started noticing a problem with the clutch pedal. It started to stay further and further down, as I had to put my foot behind it to lift it up again.

    It eventually went to the all the way to the floor and totally stopped responding as I was pulling in to my drive way (which was extremely lucky as I didnt realised my AA membership had lapsed when I called them - now with RAC). This is when I looked into the warranty and realised it had a £300 limit and labour on the clutch isnt covered. Great.

    So, when it gets to the weekend, I tow it to the local garage who usually work on my cars.

    Firstly, they dont do work for warranty claims, as its alot of hassle for them and they take ages to pay. However, I wanted the car back on the road asap and could not tow it again as my 'tower' had gone. I wasnt too concerned about spending a couple of hundred quid knowing it was working and I could use it. He thought it would be the master cylinder, and ended up saying hours labour, possibly 2, with new master cylinder. I thought fine, fix it.

    On the monday when he got round to looking at the S3, it started getting a bit fishy, as the first thing he asked me was "have you had the master cylinder off recently". To which I replied "no, I bought the car less than a week ago". "That's funny" he said, "as it looks like its been taken off very recently, had the same one put back on and the system re-bled"."Hmmmm...." was my response. He proceeded to change the master cylinder, and also a "t-piece" in the hydraulic system, as it looked as though bubbles were coming from it, possibly indicating a leak.

    He called me today and said this had not solved the issiue. Further more he also said that I would be better off taking it to Audi, as he was talking about taking the gearbox out, and on 4WD vehiclest was a nightmare. He recommended taking it to Audi themselves to advise.

    So, I will be back on the phone to the warranty company today to get it booked in somewhere else (audi specialists rather than Audi mainly due to price).

    Ive spoken to the dealer today and he told me their responsibility ends at selling the car and it needs to be sorted with the warranty company. Its a family run independant company, and until this is sorted, I do not want to mention who it is.

    My question would be down to my rights. As I bought it from a trader, and this part was obviously having problems before it was sold to me, judging by the fact that it had noticeably been tampered with, is it down to them to fix it? Im thinking along the lines of 'not fit for purpose'. I will try and get it done by the warranty company, but if they turn around and demand £500 for fixing it, does this mean I can try and claim back the other £200 with the help of trading standards?

    I have tried to sort this problem out myself rather than go through the hassle, but I feel I have no choice now as it could get very expensive, very quickly. Thoughts and advise will be strongly appreciated.

    Oh, and despite this, I dont want to sell it as its just had 4 x eagle F1 Asymms on it, and the rest of the car seems in a good condition.

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  3. Ian W

    Ian W Registered User

    Welcome to S3 ownership ! It's normally pretty good but you hit the occasional hic-up. It's a shame its so early on for you...

    I can't really advise on what I would do regarding the claim as i've always bought privately but the fault sound like the slave cylinder, same thing happend to mine.

    More bad news i'm afraid - not a cheap fix :sorry:
  4. Dani_B19

    Dani_B19 Audi-sports own special child.

    Phone trading standards and explain the situation, obivously it was fulty before they solt it you and now their just trying to pass the responsibilty and cost onto you.
    Thi may sound funny but have you checked to see if its the clutch pedal, the casing on the clutch pedal is prone to snapping and thus rendoring the clucth useless, id have alook under the dash and make sure the clutch rod (not sure the proper name for it lol) hasnt come through the clucth housing like mine did.
  5. bigstring

    bigstring Registered User

    Name and shame........ I would!

    Got your money and want nothing more to do with it, trading standards is the way forward....

    I would be back up at that garage in a heart beat! with your bills in hand....
  6. Redline1984

    Redline1984 Registered User

    If the vehicle was sold with a defect by the dealer, then it is their responsbility to get sort it not just to pass the buck onto the warranty company.

    Under the Sale of Goods Act, the onus is on the seller to either repair or replace goods which are not of satisfactory quality at the time of sale. As such they should be the ones running around, making phonecalls etc. trying to get it sorted. Don't be fobbed off by the dealer saying their responsibilty ended with the sale, because in the eyes of the law it did not.

    I had a lot of trouble when I first bought my S3, which culminated in a bill of around £1,500. However this burden was shared by the warranty company and the dealer, costing me nothing. Partly through the dealers own good will, but also partly due to the fact that under the SoGA it was their liability to pay for it.
  7. S3Lol

    S3Lol Registered User

    My mechanic said air is being drawn into the cylinder somehow, and as the master has been replaced, he thinks it leaves the slave at fault. However, he cant see ANY brake fluid whatsoever on the gearbox, which he said is very strange, as usually if its the slave, it usually leaks. Have sent the enquiry to trading standards to see what they say. Would be an absolute **** if the new master cylinder was found to be faulty!
  8. S3Lol

    S3Lol Registered User

    Ill check that pedal thing as well but I think its definitely a hydraulic issue, as when they pressure it up and bleed it, its fine for a while.
  9. reptor245

    reptor245 Registered User

    Hmmm thats weird. i thought it would be a case of "you view it, you want it, you buy it, your fault" altho not too sure about buying froma used car lot. im sure there will some small print saying you cant do a thing about it.
  10. landopanda

    landopanda Registered User

    I would have thought the sale of goods act would mean that they should fix it if what they have sold you is faulty. When i first got my car i had a problem with it after a week, called the private dealer i bought it from and he had it sorted out for me at no cost to me, he was a nice guy though. I did have to get the car to his garage, but AA did it. Good luck with trading standards!!
  11. S3 Wannabe

    S3 Wannabe Registered User

    Sorry to hear about your problems mate, I had some issues of similar magnitude when i purchased mine.

    From what i know of warranty companies they ain't worth the paper they're printed on. I wouldn't even bother chasing them up, the dealer is the party at fault here. You have a 3 month warranty on the car and it has been sold to you in a poor state. If they think the warranty halfwits should be paying for it, then they can sort it out with them -why should you be acting as a go between!!!!?????

    Speak to the dealer again and make it clear you are expecting him to foot the bill or at least resolve it with the warranty company. get trading standards involved and seek professional advice. Naming and shaming may well help as well, it helped me!
    Turns out one of the joint owners of the garage I bought from noticed me bad mouthing the company on various websites, and that people were listening and acting upon what i said (e.g. withdrawing deposits on cars they had advertised!). He was unaware of my issues with his partner and resolved things within a short space of time!

    Good luck dude, you've done nowt wrong and just keep pushing! :o.k:
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  13. -Ju-

    -Ju- Well-Known Member VCDS Map User

    I've just had a similar problem with an R32 I bought from an independant dealer. The car turned out to have a timing chain problem and the dealer initially tried to pass it off to the warranty. I refused this and phoned trading standards. The sales of goods act 1979 (as amended) states that it should be fit for purpose and free of any manufacturing or inherent defects.
    You must send a letter in giving them a reasonable time to sort it i.e.14 days. You have to do this in the first instance before you can take it any further.
    There are template letters on the consumer rights website that you can download.
    I've now handed my car back for a full refund and are picking up a 3.2 quattro on Saturday!
  14. s3_kev

    s3_kev Stage2'd!!!!!!

    id take it back leave it with them till its fixed its up to them to argue with the warrenty company to resolve the isue not you and if they dontpay out which they wont because warrenties are **** then the garage will have to foot the bill, i work for an inderpendant garage and we always repair faults with cars we sell to no cost of the customer we dont bother using warrenty companys either, the profit in the car is what all dealers use to service and repair cars before sale thats why garage prices are higher because you shouldnt have a bill untill a year after you have brought the car!!!
    w++kers hate companys like that gives us all a bad name
  15. james0808

    james0808 Registered User

    Name and shame the dealer.
  16. bantam1

    bantam1 Registered User

    as said above - slave cylinder common fault and garage's responsibility.
  17. voorhees

    voorhees Moderator Staff Member Moderator

    thats not going to happen as it puts the site at risk

    4. The laws of libel in the UK are very harsh and legal precedent means that the internet is not immune from the law in this regard. Remember that you can be identified through the information you have supplied when registering and from the IP address associated with each posting. You are liable for what you post. If the moderators of the board feel that what you have posted is potentially libellous, they will edit the post. Please do not expose the board to this risk.
  18. Broken Byzan

    Broken Byzan Photographic Moderator Staff Member Moderator VCDS Map User

    Ok, this sadly is a common fault and could be one of a few things i have seen. Sometimes the pipes feeding the slave get rubbed through by poos routing and can then cause it to suck air, or it can the the restrictor block (t peice maybe) can leak causing it to suck air. I have alos heard of the little connector that connects the pipes to the box letting air in. This is without it being the slave which although it's a cheap part, its a whole days labour in a garage.

    If the master has recently been changed i would say that someone somewhere knew that it would fault eventually, be it the previous owner, or the garage. If you are stuck with getting it done, it would be cheaper to pay for the excess and get the cylinder replaced that way.

    I would like to think the dealer will come through in the end especially under the sales of goods act. They are probably hoping the warrenty Co will deal with it to save them the cost. Seek some legal advice, and hopefully this can be resolved
  19. S3Lol

    S3Lol Registered User

    Well its in the garage today. Libel damages was a concern of mine, even though I dont think they know how to use a computer. Master cylinder has already been replaced, as has the t-piece. RAC guy who came out said it was very odd as the slave didnt look to be leaking, but air was getting into the system somehow. He then took me to a garage in Cambridge (even though I wanted it to go to Jabbasport but hey!) and they have diagnosed the slave. Ive asked them to keep hold of it for me so I can inspect it. Hopefully have it back by the weekend (fingers crossed).

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