Would you buy my car if...

Micah

Clumsy McButterfingers
Moderator
Right, now I have your attention I have a question for you guys. Following on from @KYFO.CO.UK's rotten luck with his engine and belts, I decided to create a new post rather than take Jason's thread off topic. So, jumping on the comments made by @Jimmy and @mr freeze, it kind of ties in with my thoughts about buying something with proof - would it put anyone off if the belts were done privately but documented in some way, rather than an invoice and good faith?
Here's what will be happening - a friend of mind will be doing my belts in the next few months. He works at Furlonger (specialist sports cars) so is more than your average technician, and also has a 200. He's done all the work on my car since I've had it and he is incredibly thorough and takes great pride in his work.
How should you go about documenting something as important as the belts to show they have been done? I'm thinking the invoice for the kit I bought from ALS and lots and lots of photographic evidence of the work in progress. I don't aim to sell anytime soon, but anyone who knows these cars will want peace of mind it has been done in the first place, and secondly, that it has been done properly.
I know it's best to have an invoice for work done, but when you think that I'll probably have this car for at least another couple of years, will it matter? If I sell up, have a mountain of paperwork for everything that's ever been bought, it's immaculate, and my personality shows how much I love the RenaultSport brand, surely the balance of paperwork and good faith is enough? (plus I'm old and therefore trustworthy :grin:)
I've tried to put myself in this situation - would I do it? Yes, probably, if on balance everything seemed to look right and I knew enough about the quirks of maintenance and ownership. Plus, with the way these cars are going, it won't be worth much in 2 years time to even worry about it! People seem to be selling 197's way too cheap and the 200 won't be too far behind.
Thoughts, gents?
 

Big Ben

Winner - POTM February 2018
Paid Member
I would look at your photographic evidence Micah but not with the keen eye that some of you on here seem to possess. I've always bought with my gut instinct (a few clangers!) based on what I'm driving not on its paper history. As Jason's found out, just because there's an invoice doesn't mean the works been done let alone thoroughly!
 
  • Like
Reactions: Micah

Jimmy

Good cop
The stark reality, is that whenever we buy a car, there is a large element of trust and faith that goes into it. We also tend to use our instincts (admittedly this comes with experience). A pile of paperwork is definitely reassuring, however this alone can't always be used to build a complete picture of how a car has been used by its owner(s).

When you go see a car, talking to the owner can give you a lot more of an insight than a folder full of invoices and receipts. So to answer your question, yes I would buy your car from you if you had had the belts done in the way you describe. Part of that buying process would have involved talking to you and during that time you showing me the photographs of the work being done. It builds a nice picture.

Unfortunately, we don't always get that level of 'service' when we go view a car (if it is from a dealer, for example). That is when the faith part comes into it. It's just not feasible to be able to build up this picture each and every time we want to buy a car. So we trust that the pile of invoices is a true history of what's been done on the car over the years. I'm sure that Jason's case is a rarity - where the work clearly hasn't been done - but it does get you thinking.

I've been stung by putting trust in a dealer - I spent a grand on a lot of service and repair work last year, all at once. That was supposed to include a brake service (strip, clean etc) and they charged me for it. Turns out it hadn't actually been done and the brakes subsequently seized and got ruined. And this was from a main Renault dealer - who we're encouraged to use and get their stamps in the book...
 
  • Like
Reactions: Micah

Micah

Clumsy McButterfingers
Moderator
Yes, also bought mine from Renault and was naive in the level of service and care I was expecting. You certainly live and learn!
 
I have just read this thread and thought I would put my 2p in.lol
I bought a spanking new Renault trafic in 07, I took it in for its first 18000 mile service and was charged 200 odd quid which was fine. In the meantime I also bought a scenic from same dealer I used to service it.
When it was due it's 36000 mile service the same Renault dealer wanted 500 quid to do it. Before I got the chance to book it in the scenic gearbox went wrong. So scenic went in and came back no fault found even tho i had to turn the CD player up to drown out the diff noise. So back and forwards we went for months until eventually six months later the master tech admitted the gearbox needed replacing. So in it went. They then couldn't fit my trafic in for its 36000 service so I booked it in at a Renault dealer an hour away. The following morning I picked it up and was charged 234 quid. So I asked why the diff in dealer pricing and was told there was no way the service should cost 500 at the other dealer.
I picked the scenic up when it was done and a few months later booked it in at same dealer I used for trafic service to be serviced. They informed me one of the gearbox bolts was cross threaded half way in!! To cut a long story short I now have a 2015 new shape trafic which I was told needed to be serviced every twenty five thousand miles, but at 16000 miles the service light came on so I rang crap dealer as it's closer and was told had to be serviced or would invalidate warranty. Again I rang the other dealer and was told vastly differing prices.
So far I've been told by Renault customer service.
A. No sir 2.0l dci trafic do not have an injector problem caused by water ingress.
B. No sir Renault scenic s do not suffer bulkhead drain issues which block and cause 500 quid damage plus labour to both wiper motors.
C. No sir scenic tl4 gearbox do not suffer a diff whine at 48 mph even though I had seen the technical note at the second dealer.

So my 2p is as far as Renault go, I would rather someone I trust worked on my car than a bunch of monkeys with all the tools but no idea!
 

LOCKE

Paid Member
I service my cars myself, don't see a problem with it. I buy my parts from Renault Parts Direct so have an official Renault receipt and my name, address and date on it. I then write the mileage on this receipt. I do this because it saves me getting ripped off by dealers and my pride and joy being manhandled by someone who doesn't care as much as I do. If you have the receipt for the belts with your name and address etc and the car looks like it's been looked after then I wouldn't have an issue.
 
I think the key element I overlooked was even though the guy I purchased mine from was trustworthy imo, he didn't actually own the car when the belts were done (or not in my case), so in effect he got lucky, I didn't.
My verdict? Garages, even main dealerships are hit and miss.
Your best bet is to buy from a fellow enthusiast who owned the car when the major services were done.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Big Ben

Foxspeed

"the new red baron"
Moderator
my rs i usually over service on purpose ie every 6month - this i write in the service book and have receipts to back it up...

my new purchase is in for a oil & filter service & gearbox oil next week as i havent got the time at the moment due to my new job - i wont be doing the miles either but it will still be on yearly instead bi-annually services - other jobs i will do myself if the time ie brakes service/replaement etc

if you look at a motor and it has a stack of receipts backing up whats been done then thats usually a good sign - cambelt changes on the rs are not ott as long as the locking tools are used and dare i say it renault/gates products used
 

youngarthur

Paid Member
I have Litchys shed. The only bit of paperwork i got, was the R/R printout, NO other paperwork at all.If this was mine originally,i would have kept every scrap of paperwork, old mots etc. Why would someone do all this work, and not have a pile of receipts. How many of you, would buy this, without a single piece of paperwork?. It would be nice to see receipt for ,say, belts, rather than wonder,have they actually been done?.Some of you might have seen the picture of the Pollen filter i posted, it looked as if it had never been changed, and then of course, you start to wonder. This car i will be a keeper, and i am working through problems one by one. In contrast my R26 F1, which is for sale, had a folder full of receipts/old mots etc.Arthur, stop whining, and get on with it!.
 
  • Like
Reactions: sevenfourate

Pav

Moderator
well it depends I guess..probably the best thing is to buy one of these of a member on here or a fellow clio forum..that would give you the peace of mind you need,especially if its a well known enthusiastic member..in my case,I have had lots of work done by my mate mechanic with some receipts but not all..like the belts..you would have to take my word for it im afraid..
and apart from this,theres been a lot of work done by me so you would have to trust me as a buyer...
so the conclusion is that the stamp in your service book isnt the most important factor..
 

Jimmy

Good cop
It is really disappointing to hear more bad stories from dealer experiences. These are supposed to be garages we can trust to take our cars to, who will give us the service we would like from a manufacturer-backed franchise. And we are always told that dealer stamps in a book are the be-all and end-all. Obviously not always the case...

It's unfair to tar all dealerships with the same brush and assume the worst with all of them, however in some cases, fancy showrooms and free coffee doesn't mean that the techs in the back give two hoots about your pride and joy - maybe to them your car is just another on a list that needs looking at before they go home.
 

Pav

Moderator
It's unfair to tar all dealerships with the same brush and assume the worst with all of them, however in some cases, fancy showrooms and free coffee doesn't mean that the techs in the back give two hoots about your pride and joy - maybe to them your car is just another on a list that needs looking at before they go home.
foxy could tell :excited: