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Old 28th January 2014, 09:56 AM
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Default Technical Dispute with Insurance

Hello,

Any advice here will be greatly appreciated.

I went on a road trip to Spain and had an accident there. A ground bollard popped up as I drove over it and it went straight into the sump/radiator area of my Audi A4 2.0 TFSI.

My insurance company (Admiral) agreed for my car to be sent to an official Audi mechanic in Spain and ordered for all necessary repairs to be done there, the remaining unimportant work (front bumper and AC condenser) was to be replaced once the car was back in UK.

Audi Spain replaced the main radiator, sump and a few other parts (invoice attached). A week later I got the car back from them and straight away set off on my drive back to London. Drive is approximately 1,600 miles.

About 350 miles into my drive back to London my oil light came on. I filled up a litre of oil into the car and continued on my drive without thinking much of it. Another 300/400 miles later the oil light came on again, again I filled up and continued driving. During the journey back home I was forced to top-up oil four times.

Once back in London, I arranged for the remainder of the work to be taken care of by Admiral's approved garage. I mentioned the oil consumption issue to the mechanic at the garage and we both discussed and assumed that the cause must be a leak. As Audi Spain replaced several parts including the oil sump, and all parts/labour were warranted by Audi throughout EU, I agreed to take the issue to an official Audi mechanic in London.

So after Admiral's mechanic had replaced my front bumper/AC condenser and returned the car to me I booked my car at an Audi mechanic. Audi UK did several tests and concluded that there was no physical oil leak and it was in fact the engine which was burning the oil. They measured that approximately 1.03 litres of oil was being burnt every 320 miles.

They said they had never seen consumption rate like that before and there must be internal engine damage which is causing this issue. They suggested that until further engine inspection was done (for 1749 + VAT), they could not state exactly what damage was done to the engine.

Audi UK also mentioned that after the inspection, it is possible that the entire engine will need replacing.

So once Audi UK had confirmed that the oil consumption issue was not related to the work done at Audi Spain and therefore not covered under warranty, I called up Admiral to ask them to look into this issue.

Admiral sent an "Independent" engineer to inspect my car. The engineer spent approximately 10 minutes with my car and determined that in his opinion he could not see how internal engine damage could have occurred in the accident. He also mentioned that had there been internal engine damage, the car would not have even made it to UK from Spain. Based on the Independent engineer's report, Admiral refused to look any further into my claim.

It has now been over 7 months since the accident. I have been arguing with Admiral over the phone and been passed over from one department to another. They have officially refused my request to fix my engine. They have also sent me an official refusal letter (attached). In the letter they have made a very good case for themselves and said that they do not believe that the damage was caused in the accident.

However from my point of view it is very simple. There is only one explanation for the damage and that is the accident. I did not have the oil consumption issue before the accident. I drove 1,600 miles all the way down to Spain without having to fill up. I know for a fact that the problem was caused by accident because that is the only possibility. Am I missing anything?

My only option now is the Financial Ombudsman.
I am not a mechanic and so do not know much about engines. I will however have to fight my case against Admiral through Financial Ombudsman.

Please if anyone could give me any advice on this it will be greatly appreciated.
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