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oh dear...i have a V.BAD feeling!

put my car in for its cambelt change today, as i have no time to do it myself and caouldnt be bothered with the hassle of doing it!

so, the bloke quoted my £120+VAT fot the cahnge, quite reasonable, better than the £250 renault wanted! assured me it would be done same day, as he knows i need it for work in the morning! its a fairly good garage, always have my MOT done there, tho i may have seen some rip-off warning signs yeaterday when i popped in and heard the salesman charge a woman £70+VAT for a plugs and leads change on her Mondeo!!!!!! WTF?!!!

anyway, i just rang the bloke, his words are that "hes having some problems with it at the minute that hes trying to figure out, if its ready at all this evening then it will be at 6 (close of business)" - is he having a laugh?! what can you do wrong, and what can be so hard on a cambelt change? i almost told him the haynes manual is in the boot but held my mouth!!!

anyway, apart from the late finish im worried he may try and charge me labour costs for this time he is spending fixing what should be a 2-2.5 hour job. Is he entitled to do this, bearing in mind he has already quoted me a figure?

I wil be VERY PISSED OFF if he tries to stitch me up on this :mad:

Garages always seem to want to add on bizarre charges! When i had the front suspension springs changed on mine the guy said they would probably be about £20/£30 they ended up charging me £78 for one spring + labour!!! When I asked why they didnt let me know, his response was oh, i didnt think it would be a a problem...
When I asked for the receipt for the part (from where it was bought) he said there wasnt one. I pointed out that either he was being ripped off or he was ripping me off as springs cost about £20 from euro car parts!!

That was a lesson I learnt the hard way. Always make sure that you specify the work you want done - in your case it should be a fixed charge (as it was when mine was changed)

Ill keep my fingers crossed for ya!!

cheers =phil - ive decided im gonna go there in person now, rather than over the phone for him to tell me some sh*te ass story! I am well stresses about this, but i dont see how he can even think about overcharging me, i specified the job?!

right, heres an update for you. i am not happy.:

they rang me about 5:15pm, around an hour after i rang them, to tell me the motor wont be ready as the tensioner has siezed and they need to get a new one. they will have to order it in o wont get it till sometime tomorrow and then they will have to fit it, etc. the thing is, i am sceptical about this since if there was a problem at 4pm when i rang, how come it has taken them over an hour to work out that its seized?! surely you know as soon as you slip the old one off?!!!!

anyway, i cant see how i can challenge them on this since i cant actually prove they are taking me for a ride...sure icould ask to see the seized tensioner but i bet theyve "already disposed of it, sir!".

...i reckon this is gonna turn into one big f*cking expensive*t, and i wanted to get my alloys tomorrow. B*stard garages.

(ok im calmer now ;) )
  Clio II 1.4 Priveleg

There would appear to be a moral to this story. You pay for what you get!

I work in a Renault dealership and we always give an estimate for the work to be undertaken and if there are any problems encountered during the job, we will contact the customer detailing the problem and any additional costs involved. After all, ITS your money we are spending! The costs involved with changing a cambelt are quite high but you will have genuine Renault parts fitted by a Renault trained technician using all the special tools required to do the job properly and ON TIME! You will also get a full 12 month gaurantee on parts and labour.

Changing cambelts is not for the faint hearted, it does require a sound knowledge of the product and the methods involved. One tiny error during the fitting of the belt can lead to the destruction of your beloved engine!

Dont leave it in the hands of untrained mechanics who think its just nuts and bolts!:mad:

Dont forget - you always get what you pay for and that may in some circumstances cost you dear!

  Skoda Fabia vRS

ask to see the replaced part, i always do an they always provide me with it without any hassle, you just have to find a good garage, lucky for me i have really close to me which i use

BOB - yeah, i see what youre saying, but i did believe that they were a reputable garage and the cost from a renault garage was astronomical (~£250). i guess i have learnt the hard way! i will ask to see the part tomorrow, but if they are gonna charge me extra labour charges theres nothing i can do about it, so it seems!
  Clio II 1.4 Priveleg

Hi Steve

I am sure they are a reputable garage but horses for courses

Yes, there MAYBE something you can do about it, if you signed the job sheet/card on arrival! Main dealers get you to sign this for the benefit of both parties.

You have entered a contract with your garage for the replacement cambelt, they quoted you £120 + VAT. If you have not agreed to pay any additional costs, then you are only liable for the original quotation!

However, if you have agreed to pay EXTRAS, then you will have to settle the bill! I am not a legal executive but you could go to the CBA (Citizens Advice Bureau) for further details of your legal oblgation!

The siezed adjuster would come with the recommened Renault cambelt kit and would be replaced within the price quoted. If the garage should ask for extra labour charges for fitting this item, then that would be unjustified in my personal opinion, as it is part and parcel of the job.

In a main dealer we can only charge for agreed repairs EXCEPT where we have obtained the owners permission to undertake additional work.



i unfortunately did not sighn any job sheet - again somethign which i know know to do for the future!

its interesting to note the adjuster that woujld come with the renault kit - i didnt think they could ask for any extra labour charges, but if they do then am i right in saying to them that it is no more difficult than simply removing the old adjuster and tightening the new one?! please could someone confirm this as i think this is how i did it on my micra but cannot remember.

...and the rules you learn about main dealers - i didnt know that you could only undertake stated work!

...that makes me feel even worse!!! damn that, if i had only paid £55 then i could have afforded some better i can only dream!

No, there is another way around it all. And you dont have to pay a peny. Go around to the garage and kill the bloke. Then drive your car off. Buy some alloys then park your car in your garage. Jobs a good un. If you get caught and you behave you will be out in 4 years. By then your car will feel even better to drive around in.


ps If your gay and single then its surely an even more lucrative opertunity (think jail)
  Clio II 1.4 Priveleg

It all comes down to the bottom line.

Pay what you will and what you can afford.

But you will have to live with what you have paid for.

Main dealers ARE expensive in comparison, but they have to send staff on regular training courses and buy special tools for every new model released in the market. Overheads are astromnimical! You do get the piece of mind that if it does goes tits up, you have some redress on the dealer and Renault UK for some assistance.

Try your local Renault dealer next time but always ask for an estimate and sign the job card on arrival!

  Clio II 1.4 Priveleg


You have been playing GTA III too long!

Ive been there and killed myself several times but still I wake up in the real world!


I had EXACTLY the same story. £120 to change the belt but then, oh the tensioner seems to be seized and youll need a new one. They couldnt get the old one out however and had to fix it into a certain position and hope it didnt slip.

good news! they rang at about 11am, my car was all done and dusted!

asked for the old tensioner and belt to see, they were fine about it and showed me, even talked about their suppliers and said they couldnt get a renault one in until tomorrow and since i had said that i neded it urgently they had gone to their usual supplier to get it in.

...and the best bit: didnt try and charge me any more labour, just for the tensioner (£30+VAT).

so the total price was about £170 inc VAT, not bad. mi pleased to say i was wrong about the garage, and now the cars mainainance is bang up to date i can get on to getting my rims sorted! cheers for the advice people,