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Old 11th June 2013, 10:26 PM
S7Paul S7Paul is offline
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Default Vauxhall Astra faulty gearbox

We had a 2006 Vauxhall Astra 1.9 CDTi which developed a serious gearbox problem. We phoned Southampton Garage and Gearbox Services (aka SGS) and spoke to someone who was clearly very familiar with this problem, as itís apparently common on Vauxhalls with 6-speed gearboxes. He said that sometimes it can be repaired by fitting new bearings, but if itís too bad a reconditioned gearbox would be required. SGS website clearly states that they provide a 12-month warranty on all work.

We took the car to SGS and after a couple of days they reported that when they drained the gearbox oil various metal particles came out, and therefore the gearbox would need replacing. We gave them the go-ahead to source and fit a reconditioned gearbox. They did this, and we collected the car. SGS seemed to be quite busy, as they finished the car (and we collected it) on Easter Sunday (31st March). As the mechanic had only gone into work to finish our car, he hadnít switched on the office computer, so although he was able to give us the credit card receipt, he couldnít print a full receipt and warranty. He said he would send it to us the following week. Despite numerous reminders, nothing arrived.

We sold the car on 7th June to a private buyer. He contacted us today, saying that there was a problem with the gearbox. He had put the car up on ramps and drained the gearbox oil, which he described as black sludge containing metal particles. He also said that the differential (which is built into the gearbox) is excessively worn. In short, it needs a new gearbox.
We have both tried to contact SGS. Their stance is that their warranty is not transferable so they have no liability.

Their website makes no mention of warranties not being transferable and neither was this stated at the time the work was done. We could not read any conditions on the warranty form itself because they never got around to providing it. My view is that regardless of any warranty small print, it is reasonable to expect a gearbox to last more than a couple of months and so they should fix it.

Failing that, Iím considering coming to an arrangement with the new owner whereby we agree that Iíll temporarily take back the ownership of the car so that SGS have to honour the warranty.

Any advice on this matter would be greatly appreciated.
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