Do I have a claim on used car dealer

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Last week, bought a low mileage used Infiniti from an independent used car dealer, fairly big dealer, that sells mainly higher end used cars.

The battery was dead when I showed up to test drive it, they jumped it on the spot for my test drive. Car drove/looked great, I put a deposit down, pending an inspection by my mechanic. Had that inspection completed, all came out fine. The dealer had offered to swap the battery, since I was concerned with it.

They confirmed by email they had swapped the battery and I then went in and bought the car on Wed. I did not buy extended warranty, as every piece of research on them indicates they are a bad deal for consumers.

Drive car home, all is great for a couple days. Then Friday we get torrential rains while I'm at work, straight downpours for nearly an hour. Go out to my car, it starts, but goes into a safety mode where it won't allow you to drive over a few mph. I look over and passenger side floor is soaked with rain water.

Without going into details, these cars require the removing of the wiper cowl to remove the battery, and if it's not replaced correctly rain water can pour right into the cabin, behind the dash. It seems obvious to me that the dealer caused this problem when they swapped the battery. It has resulted in getting the electrical/computer modules wet and sending out all sorts of freaky codes, at one point making the car undrivable....though it's since dried out and is somewhat better.

I've contacted the dealer twice so far.....no reply. I'm thinking of giving them one more try, if they fail to respond I'll take it to the Nissan/Infiniti dealer and attempt to see if they'll document the cause of the problem, and cost to resolve.

Would I have much of a small claims case here, if it's found that the dealer's work on the car caused the damage?

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I have no idea if it did before....but considering the amount that it leaked 2 days after I bought it, I think it hard t... (more)

rascott (Aug. 15, 2016 @ 1:13p) |

Or perhaps it just sat there getting rained on, and would dry enough for no one to ever notice on test drives.... Maybe ... (more)

jaytrader (Aug. 15, 2016 @ 3:01p) |

There is no way....if you saw how much water was leaking in....if it just sat there the car would be very musty/mildew s... (more)

rascott (Aug. 15, 2016 @ 4:54p) |

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You likely bought "as-is" all faults included the minute you drove off the lot. I had a similar situation with a used truck I purchased (refurbishing that the dealer did caused about $600 worth of damage). The dealership stepped up to the plate and paid the repair bill as a "goodwill" gesture, but it'll completely depend on how generous this dealership is feeling. However, I doubt you have any legal claim against them if they tell you to pound sand.

Maybe try contact once more then file with BBB. Authorized car dealers have a special arrangement with BBB that tracks complaints with dealers and that will affect how dealer is rated with the manufacturer. Something I learned after a long winded sage with a 1st year model Focus my parents bought.

what model and year? how much did it cost? how much would a new one cost?

ZenNUTS said:   Maybe try contact once more then file with BBB. Authorized car dealers have a special arrangement with BBB that tracks complaints with dealers and that will affect how dealer is rated with the manufacturer. Something I learned after a long winded sage with a 1st year model Focus my parents bought.
  This is an independent dealer, not an Infiniti dealer.  Think Major World




https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U5RBfUTNqnY



In that case..

Lo sentimos, amigo, estás jodido

Why don;t you go into the dealership and talk with whoever sold it to you?

mwa423 said:   You likely bought "as-is" all faults included the minute you drove off the lot. I had a similar situation with a used truck I purchased (refurbishing that the dealer did caused about $600 worth of damage). The dealership stepped up to the plate and paid the repair bill as a "goodwill" gesture, but it'll completely depend on how generous this dealership is feeling. However, I doubt you have any legal claim against them if they tell you to pound sand.

I assumed as much.

rufflesinc said:   what model and year? how much did it cost? how much would a new one cost?

How's that relevant?

rascott said:   rufflesinc said:   what model and year? how much did it cost? how much would a new one cost?

How's that relevant?
to assess if it's worth it

As an aside, I've bought several used cars from gm dealers and purchased gm's very long no deductible warranty. I've always come out the winner because my cars have had all the bells and whistles and enough breaks sooner or later to make it worthwhile.

rufflesinc said:   rascott said:   rufflesinc said:   what model and year? how much did it cost? how much would a new one cost?

How's that relevant?
to assess if it's worth it


2009 G37x, 26k miles, paid just under $16k.

remmymom said:   As an aside, I've bought several used cars from gm dealers and purchased gm's very long no deductible warranty. I've always come out the winner because my cars have had all the bells and whistles and enough breaks sooner or later to make it worthwhile.
  Stop buying GM cars???

Does your state require used car dealers to give a warranty? Some do. Check if you live in one of those states.

just 26k miles in 7 years... a bargain!

scrouds said:   Does your state require used car dealers to give a warranty? Some do. Check if you live in one of those states.

No. I'm likely on my own, but after doing some research I'm hopeful I can easily fix the leak issue on my own, and as the electrical has dried up the issues seem to be going away.

RareWS6 said:   just 26k miles in 7 years... a bargain!
  Not exactly my first thought. Less than 4,000 miles a year are nearly unheard of. I'd want a believable explanation. Hope you got a Carfax. 

rascott said:   I've contacted the dealer twice so far.....no reply.
What exactly does this mean?  What did you do, send the sales guy a text or something?  Sheesh - how about walking in to the place and asking to speak to the general manager?

 

Whoever said that the car was sold as-is, it looks like NY has a statutory warranty for used cars. The length depends on the mileage of the car. If the dealer stated there was no warranty, then they may have a legal issue with the State of NY. That said, the issue presented does not seem to fall under the covered items.

OP: I think the suggestion to visit the dealership in person is the best advice.

atikovi said:   
RareWS6 said:   just 26k miles in 7 years... a bargain!
  Not exactly my first thought. Less than 4,000 miles a year are nearly unheard of. I'd want a believable explanation. Hope you got a Carfax. 

  
Not common but not inherently suspicious in a class of vehicle common in households with more vehicles than drivers.  You do have to look for different things, the kinds of damage that come with disuse...Dried-out seals, degraded rubber/plastic bits, and such.

I have one car that's currently sitting at about 2200 miles a year.  I got it from my uncle, who used it as a fair-weather commuting toy, and I'm pretty sure the previous owner did the same.  With this one being AWD, maybe the little old lady only drove it to church on Sundays when the snow, ice, and road salt were out.

rascott said:   I've contacted the dealer twice so far.....no reply. I'm thinking of giving them one more try, if they fail to respond I'll take it to the Nissan/Infiniti dealer and attempt to see if they'll document the cause of the problem, and cost to resolve.
  Why would you wait?  
1. Get a disinterested 3rd party to document the problem and give you an estimate to repair
2. Present that estimate to the sales manager at the place where you bought it
3. Tell sales manager you want a fair deal for everyone, but that you're happy to go to court if you have to.

Dealer finally got back with me, I'm taking it in later this week.

As to the mileage, yes had a carfax, and it showed consistent service at the Infiniti dealer during it's entire life, and was only driven 3k miles on average per year. You can easily tell by looking it doesn't have much wear at all on exterior or interior.

Prior owner was a guy from Libertyville IL.

taylor0987 said:   Whoever said that the car was sold as-is, it looks like NY has a statutory warranty for used cars. The length depends on the mileage of the car. If the dealer stated there was no warranty, then they may have a legal issue with the State of NY. That said, the issue presented does not seem to fall under the covered items.

OP: I think the suggestion to visit the dealership in person is the best advice.


I'm guessing you're talking about this:
http://www.ag.ny.gov/consumer-frauds/used-car-lemon-law-fact-sheet

I may have missed something, but I don't see "misc. electrical components" anywhere.

rascott said:   Last week, bought a low mileage used Infiniti from an independent used car dealer, fairly big dealer, that sells mainly higher end used cars.

The battery was dead when I showed up to test drive it, they jumped it on the spot for my test drive. Car drove/looked great, I put a deposit down, pending an inspection by my mechanic. Had that inspection completed, all came out fine. The dealer had offered to swap the battery, since I was concerned with it.

They confirmed by email they had swapped the battery and I then went in and bought the car on Wed. I did not buy extended warranty, as every piece of research on them indicates they are a bad deal for consumers.

Drive car home, all is great for a couple days. Then Friday we get torrential rains while I'm at work, straight downpours for nearly an hour. Go out to my car, it starts, but goes into a safety mode where it won't allow you to drive over a few mph. I look over and passenger side floor is soaked with rain water.

Without going into details, these cars require the removing of the wiper cowl to remove the battery, and if it's not replaced correctly rain water can pour right into the cabin, behind the dash. It seems obvious to me that the dealer caused this problem when they swapped the battery. It has resulted in getting the electrical/computer modules wet and sending out all sorts of freaky codes, at one point making the car undrivable....though it's since dried out and is somewhat better.

I've contacted the dealer twice so far.....no reply. I'm thinking of giving them one more try, if they fail to respond I'll take it to the Nissan/Infiniti dealer and attempt to see if they'll document the cause of the problem, and cost to resolve.

Would I have much of a small claims case here, if it's found that the dealer's work on the car caused the damage?

  I would walk in to the dealership, ask for the general manager or dealer principal and explain what happened.  Give them an opportunity to make it right.  If they fail to step up, advise them that you have no option but to document your experience in every forum that you can possibly think of (dealerrater.com, Yelp, attorney general, etc).  The dealer is betting that you'll go away if they ignore you, you need to convince them that it's in their best interest to make it right.  

rascott said:   Dealer finally got back with me, I'm taking it in later this week.And ?

What happen next?

mwa423 said:   
taylor0987 said:   Whoever said that the car was sold as-is, it looks like NY has a statutory warranty for used cars. The length depends on the mileage of the car. If the dealer stated there was no warranty, then they may have a legal issue with the State of NY. That said, the issue presented does not seem to fall under the covered items.

OP: I think the suggestion to visit the dealership in person is the best advice.


I'm guessing you're talking about this:
http://www.ag.ny.gov/consumer-frauds/used-car-lemon-law-fact-she...

I may have missed something, but I don't see "misc. electrical components" anywhere.

  I don't see "misc. electrical components" there either. What you might have missed was that I did say "the issue presented does not seem to fall under the covered items." In other words, I wasn't claiming that the warranty would help in this situation, rather I was refuting the statement that you made saying the car was sold completely as-is. New York law says that there is a warranty for this car, just not on the problem the OP is having.

Check your state laws...

Here in ct, any car purchased from the dealer for above <some threshold, probably $5k> comes with a state mandated warranty for the first three months and the dealer is obligated to fix any issues during this period.

<edited to add> Jumped the gun. After posting I noticed that the question of warranty by state law was covered in much more detail by earlier posters. Never mind.

xoneinax said:   rascott said:   Dealer finally got back with me, I'm taking it in later this week.And ?


Finally got it in....dealer said the windshield was the culprit. They are waving any of their charges and will split the cost of a new windshield with me from the auto glass company.

I find the whole thing strange that the windshield would suddenly start leaking so significantly right after I bought the car, and right after they were messing with the battery and cowling.

I'm wanting to find out how they'll warranty their windshield work against future leaks.

rascott said:   
xoneinax said:   
rascott said:   Dealer finally got back with me, I'm taking it in later this week.
And ?



Finally got it in....dealer said the windshield was the culprit. They are waving any of their charges and will split the cost of a new windshield with me from the auto glass company.

I find the whole thing strange that the windshield would suddenly start leaking so significantly right after I bought the car, and right after they were messing with the battery and cowling.

I'm wanting to find out how they'll warranty their windshield work against future leaks.

  Maybe I missed it... how do you know it didn't leak prior to buying it? Was it down pouring the day you test drove it?

jaytrader said:   rascott said:   
xoneinax said:   
rascott said:   Dealer finally got back with me, I'm taking it in later this week.
And ?



Finally got it in....dealer said the windshield was the culprit. They are waving any of their charges and will split the cost of a new windshield with me from the auto glass company.

I find the whole thing strange that the windshield would suddenly start leaking so significantly right after I bought the car, and right after they were messing with the battery and cowling.

I'm wanting to find out how they'll warranty their windshield work against future leaks.

  Maybe I missed it... how do you know it didn't leak prior to buying it? Was it down pouring the day you test drove it?


I have no idea if it did before....but considering the amount that it leaked 2 days after I bought it, I think it hard to believe it was leaking before without them knowing about it. I suppose they could have been drying it out each time, but there was no indication of that I could tell. It is a large lot (think like a CarMax but a bit smaller).

rascott said:   
jaytrader said:   
rascott said:   
xoneinax said:   
rascott said:   Dealer finally got back with me, I'm taking it in later this week.
And ?



Finally got it in....dealer said the windshield was the culprit. They are waving any of their charges and will split the cost of a new windshield with me from the auto glass company.

I find the whole thing strange that the windshield would suddenly start leaking so significantly right after I bought the car, and right after they were messing with the battery and cowling.

I'm wanting to find out how they'll warranty their windshield work against future leaks.

  Maybe I missed it... how do you know it didn't leak prior to buying it? Was it down pouring the day you test drove it?


I have no idea if it did before....but considering the amount that it leaked 2 days after I bought it, I think it hard to believe it was leaking before without them knowing about it. I suppose they could have been drying it out each time, but there was no indication of that I could tell. It is a large lot (think like a CarMax but a bit smaller).

  Or perhaps it just sat there getting rained on, and would dry enough for no one to ever notice on test drives.... Maybe no one drove it? How long was it on the lot for?

Regardless, the outcome of this is probably as much as you're going to get, which isn't bad.

jaytrader said:   rascott said:   
jaytrader said:   
rascott said:   
xoneinax said:   
rascott said:   Dealer finally got back with me, I'm taking it in later this week.
And ?



Finally got it in....dealer said the windshield was the culprit. They are waving any of their charges and will split the cost of a new windshield with me from the auto glass company.

I find the whole thing strange that the windshield would suddenly start leaking so significantly right after I bought the car, and right after they were messing with the battery and cowling.

I'm wanting to find out how they'll warranty their windshield work against future leaks.

  Maybe I missed it... how do you know it didn't leak prior to buying it? Was it down pouring the day you test drove it?


I have no idea if it did before....but considering the amount that it leaked 2 days after I bought it, I think it hard to believe it was leaking before without them knowing about it. I suppose they could have been drying it out each time, but there was no indication of that I could tell. It is a large lot (think like a CarMax but a bit smaller).

  Or perhaps it just sat there getting rained on, and would dry enough for no one to ever notice on test drives.... Maybe no one drove it? How long was it on the lot for?

Regardless, the outcome of this is probably as much as you're going to get, which isn't bad.



There is no way....if you saw how much water was leaking in....if it just sat there the car would be very musty/mildew smelling.

Anyway, looks like I'll only be out about $90 towards the new windshield, hopefully that resolves the issue.



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