• New Patreon Tier and Early Access Content available. If you would like to support AVForums, we now have a new Patreon Tier which gives you access to selected news, reviews and articles before they are available to the public. Read more.

Trader won't pay out on faulty s/h car


Prominent Member
I bought a car from an independent trader (working from home) back in December last year. A 51 plate Golf TDI Mk4. I paid £3700 which was market value for a dealer at the time. It had 3 months warranty included (although despite promising to send me those details, he never did).

After I bought it, the car quickly (within the first few days and weeks) turned out to have several faults:

1. Battery was dead. I've no idea how he started it when selling it to me, it was dead the next morning. £100
2. Knocking noise from the rear suspension. How I didn't notice this during the test drive I have no idea but the VW garage have never seen rear axle bushes so broken. £250.
VW found these additional faults when fixing 2:
3. Alternator belt slipping. £100
4. Turbo hose split. £100
5. Mid-section of the exhaust was an MOT failure. £100

6. Driver's heated seat dead. £275.

Initially, I replaced the battery. I figured oh well but then as the bills started to rack up, I contacted the seller. He said the warranty would pay out and he should hear back within the week. Two weeks passed. Nothing. I rang back. It will take 6 weeks, he then said. 8 weeks later, I rang back. They won't pay out, it's wear and tear, he said. I'm furious at this point. I'm nearly a grand out of pocket and he's messing me around.

He doesn't respond to my emails, barely to my SMSs and he now won't answer my phone calls. He keeps telling me 'wear/tear'. According to the sale of good act, and from conversations I've had with consumer direct, he should pay out for all the faults listed above.

My next step is to send a letter recorded delivery. After that, court I guess (is it even worth it for a grand?).

Are there any other steps I should take?

The dealer is "Heathrow High Performance".


Distinguished Member
You need to take it to the small claims court matey, it only costs about £50 and providing you have enough evidence (which you have as a main dealer have inspected it) it won't cost you any more than that (apart from time). No need for a solicitor, just represent yourself and you'll win I'm sure.


Prominent Member
I'm quite friendly with the main dealer and a few of the staff there. I have some work done on the books and some work done off the books. I had all this work (except the heated seat and battery) done off the books because my interactions with the trader, who sold me the car, were problematic and I couldn't be sure I'd be able to get the warranty claim processed by him. So I worked with the main dealer mechanic who did the work in his own time for quite a bit less than it would have cost on the books and for cash. I've asked him to write me up the relevant invoices.

Have I shot myself in the foot by having the work done this way?


Prominent Member
As you have had most of the work done "cash", i cant see you getting anywhere against the seller, especially as you probably have no receipts to prove it.


Distinguished Member
I would log the claim. If the dealer decides to defend I would pay my friend the £200 to put the work on the books and get a receipt.


Prominent Member
Yes, obtaining receipts is not a problem.

The latest video from AVForums

SVS Prime Wireless Pro Powered Speakers - Review Coming Soon
Subscribe to our YouTube channel
Support AVForums with Patreon

Top Bottom