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3rd Party inflicted scratches

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  • 3rd Party inflicted scratches

    Dropped my van off with my mechanic because I had a fuel leak and I didn't have time to fix it myself.

    I collect it last night and he tells me he has had the guys up the road wash it for me. I swear I felt my jaw drop when he told me. These "guys" are one of those hand wash joints in the SE suburbs of Melbourne. When I collected the van he did say he insisted the wash guys use microfiber, be carefull and do a good job. I have told my mechanic in the past not to wash my van. I think maybe he was feeling bad for taking 3 days to sort the out and van charging 5hrs labour. WTF!!!! (Thats a other moan for another thread)

    Anyway it was dark and raining when I collect the van so only this morning did I get a chance to check out.

    They catch my fingernail and some are down to the undercoat. I think the scratches on the door strip will polish out. There is plenty of clear on them and they don't look too bad. ones on the body wont though.

    I immediately messaged my mechanic over the next couple of hours. He is a good bloke IMHO and not one to pass off the blame. When I first took the van to him a couple of years ago he said he thought he may have scratched the van. As it turned out he had not and the damage he pointed out had been there since before I purchased the van.

    Anyway he checked his security footage and confirmed the damage wasn't done by him, his father or the other mechanic. The van had been on the hoist for the 3 days. I have no reason to doubt him.

    He wants me to meet him on Monday and go with him to the hand wash place.

    So my question to you guys is what do you think is a reasonable cause of action to take as far as repair or compensation goes? Obviously a full respray isn't likely to come my way....thoughts?
    Last edited by Horace01; 20-05-2017, 05:56 PM.

  • #2
    I feel your frustration, I had 3 of 4 wheels chipped by a rattle gun, and a nice big scratch on the roof from a Holden dealer a few years back. All I can suggest is to remain calm while speaking to them, it worked for me, they gave me a loan car for week while they fixed it all, and they did it properly. You may want to ask them what their reputation is worth to them, once it gets out on social media that they are not to be trusted, maybe threaten them with a visit from "A current affair".
    Silence is Golden,
    and Duct Tape is Silver.


    • #3
      Geez man. That's messed up

      I honestly don't know what to say here.

      I know your mechanic is a good bloke but I'm not entirely sure where the line of demarcation is in this instance. We know these hand washing places are death traps for paint. I'm just not convinced they're going to give a tinker's cuss about your issue. And as you've said, you've given him clear instruction in the last not to wash your car

      It's a really tough one mate. My gut feel is to correct the scratches and minimise them as best you can and work out something with the mechanic like a free service or something.

      Sent from my SM-G930F using Tapatalk

      Specialising in high-end detailing for enthusiasts

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      • #4
        that sucks, be prepared for a series of denials, that will increase in volume, the longer you stand there talking to the car wash manager, there is almost no way you can prove they caused it, i had a similar experience where a well intentioned mechanic put me in a similar situation several years ago, luckily it was just swirling, which was able to be corrected.

        look at some of these large chains facebook pages and there are quite a few stories about them damaging cars, and no recourse or compensation is ever forthcoming.


        • #5
          unless you have photos of how the car was with time/date before taking it to the wash place

          They will say it was already on the car.


          • #6
            As expected the car wash joint is denying any responsibility.

            Interestingly they told me all their pressure washers have rubber ends so they cannot scratch the paint if the accidentally touch the panels. I couldn't help but point out when watching their security footage of my van being cleaned that the lance that was being used didn't have any rubber on the end. I could even see through the office window out onto the lot that the lance had no rubber on it.

            Still they denied any responsibility. Unfortunately the security camera really only showed the roof of the van and prooved to be useless.

            My mechanic has been great. He has said he will pay for it to be sorted. Quite rightly he is pissed with the carwash place. Once I get a few quotes he is going to attempt to hit them up to split the cost. As he said he gives them $500-$600 week in washes, including a lot of high end Audi's (he is a VAG specialist). I suggested going forward he should get a mobile detailer with a good reputation to take car of his post service washes for him.

            I took the van around to JJ at Affinesse to assess the damage. He actually pointed out a couple of other damaged areas ( I really should wear my glasses when checking my paint). Seeing these I'm now 100% convinced the damage wasn't caused by the mechanic.

            So turns out there is only about 83-96 microns of pain and as the main scratches are down to the undercoat it's definately going to need respraying.

            So based on that if any pros reading this are interested in the job let me know and you can give me a quote.

            Sent from my Nexus 9 using Tapatalk


            • #7
              I'm sorry to hear that about your car . The mechanic seems like a nice guy, but, regardless of how long he had your car, he shouldn't have sent it to a car wash (or anywhere) without your permission :/.

              Perhaps you could maybe arrange some business with him, send clients your way instead of the car wash ?

              Best of luck getting the car sorted


              • #8
                Feel your pain - I've had my fair share of damage while my car has been in for wheels and servicing. You just have to find that right place to go - unfortunately in my case, my mechanic is in Sydney but its certainly worth the trip
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