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Toyota Recall

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MynameisLuca | 00:20 Thu 10th Jun 2021 | Motoring
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My friends car was sent to a Toyota dealer for a recall, (free check up) all was sorted but they wanted 45p for putting the foot mat back.
Anyone ever have a charge like this when having their car checked out ?

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That's a new one on me!

I reckon that the charge has come about because
(a) the dealership uses a computer system that calculates the charge for every job done, based upon the time allocated to it ; and
(b) there was nobody present with the authority to cancel the charge generated by the computer.

So the computer was programmed to charge a zero amount for each task that was specified by Toyota as part of the recall work but also to check each stage of the work by ensuring that the mechanic ticked onscreen that it had been done.

The last item on the computer's checklist was "Has the foot mat been replaced?". When the mechanic clicked to tick "Yes", the computer saw that the task wasn't listed as a free one and checked its database to see how long was allocated to it. Finding out that just 15 seconds should be needed, the computer charged £90 per hour, plus VAT, for that time. That comes to a charge of 45p, which the technician wasn't authorised to revoke.

I try to keep my car as far as possible away from main dealers' workshops. Even when I actually worked for a Ford main dealer, getting 20% discount off their regular workshop rates, I still had to pay 50% more to use their services than I did to go to my local friendly garage.

The guy who runs that garage works on a far more liberal basis than the main dealer your friend had to go to. For example, I had a nasty rumbling sound under my car, that I thought might cost a fortune to fix. I took my car to the garage, where the boss immediately broke off from what he was doing to look underneath my car. After a few minutes he'd removed the broken rubber mount on the exhaust pipe. He told me that he could order a replacement part but it would be simpler if I drove 4 miles up the road to where he told me I could buy one cheaply. I did so, for just £2.45, and drove back to the garage to ask the boss when he could fit it. He replied "No time like the present" and immediately got underneath my car to do the job, which took him around ten minutes. His charge for removing the broken part, advising me as to where I could get a replacement cheaply and then fitting it was ZERO. (He's done loads of little jobs for me like that for free).

Even when there is a bill to pay, he doesn't pressurise his customers for the money. The last time he did some work for me, he hadn't calculated the bill by the time I collected my car. I tried to pay him a few days later but he still wasn't ready to take my money. It was only on the fifth time of trying to pay him, a full month later, that he gave me a very tiny bill for quite a lot of work. That's the type of garage I like!

;-)
I like these questions, you know, where a one word answer will do.
Buenchico, when a car is recalled doesn't it have to go to a main dealer or an approved garage at least? As far as I know you can't take it to Bodgit, Codgit and Ammerit up the road.
Chris has nailed it about computerised charging.
My local main dealer is lovely and has been since I wandered in there to look at cars almost 10 years ago.
I would have paid it & told them I wouldn't be visiting them ever again. I know they wouldn't care, but hey.
Did your friend pay up, Luca?
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No, Barry. Sorry, I should have said that they gave him an invoice for other things that needed to be done, that was one of the things on the invoice that needed doing.
Was it the drivers side foot mat ?. Usually fastened down on the carpet by giant sized press studs ( about 10 secs to re fix ).
Question Author
Not sure what side it was, Tonyv, it was a loose mat, no studs.. It was in the foot-well when he left it in, then somehow it got into the boot.
then why was he charged for putting it back, if it in fact wasnt put back?
Question Author
It was on the invoice of things that needed doing.
I dont understand that at all. You cant invoice for work you haven't done
bednobs, the computer will know that the mat had to be removed to do a particular job and automatically invoiced for the replacement of the mat - even though it wasn't done.
It should have been done and the computer assumed it was.

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