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Dispute Advice

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Old Sep 14th, 2018, 21:14   #11
oragex
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You don't mention the story before the hg repair. Did the engine overheat? My quite possible guess is the head was rather cracked at that moment. In this scenario subaru is not responsible for it, but may be responsible for replacing the hg without thoroughly having tested the head for warping/cracks - so may get the labor money back. It's kind of gray area so that may not help win such case, even more so given the miles on the car..
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Old Sep 14th, 2018, 21:28   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by volvoid View Post
talk to a solicitor before starting, he might well advise you of your chances of winning. Im thinking had head gasket, higher mileage, older car, little while ago, your chances are reducing with every post.
Agree with the above.

Instead of ploughing time, effort and money chasing the legal route with no guarantee of a satisfactory outcome and the car back on the road, it may be best to plough that time, effort and money into a second hand, pressure tested head, fitted to get the car back on the road with a known outcome from the start.

Not an easy situation and I hope you get it sorted whichever way.
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Old Sep 14th, 2018, 23:13   #13
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H/Gs replaced as there was an oil leak, the usual indicator on these engines. No overheating beforehand, and I have clocked 8k miles since the repair; I doubt any cracks were present in January as I would have had problems before now.

Sube parts are famously expensive but a new head is a reasonable £700ish (plus all the labour to put the engine back in) so I'm looking at around £2k. Do I want to spend that much again so soon? It's the old dilemma of pouring more money into a car I very much like and have kept well for 6 years, or putting the money towards another car I know nothing about.

If I do challenge the MD I'll report back with the outcome.
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Old Sep 14th, 2018, 23:20   #14
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It would be reasonable for the garage to ask how you allowed it to overheat to the stage that it was hot enough to crack the head, if indeed that was the sequence of events.
It would be very difficult for a court (or expert) to say whether the head was weakened long ago leading to needing a gasket replaced. The work could well have weakened it some more and eventually it just gave out. It would be very difficult to prove negligence against the garage in this case in my view.
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Old Sep 15th, 2018, 08:39   #15
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Ok am with the orhers... I am sorry but the main thing is that if you pull over the instance the engine heats up or light illuminates this would prob not happen. Also it’s a fair time since they did the work.


I seem to be the only one asking this (genuinly) but

1). How do you prov a thermostat caused this. I understand that upon reaching heat the coolant does not circulate via the radiator as the thermostat has failed. I have had thermostats fail in the past but never led to this.

2). The real nail in the coffin to me is this.... your inspector will not be able to prove thermostat failures because the vehicle has overheated and will have meant the thermostat would have been subjected to excess heat. Question to
Inspector is did the thermostat fail or did the heat generated car we it to fail and you can not prove that.

What is wrong with a second hand pressure tested head rebuilt?
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Old Sep 15th, 2018, 22:53   #16
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You have just brought back an old memory. I had a stuck closed thermostat on a Morris 1000 van. It had been left standing for along time and I think corrosion got to it. It would be fine for 30 minutes driving and then the temperature would start to climb. It would then start to eject the coolant and there was plenty of steam to attract your attention to a problem. After pulling over and letting it cool I was able to remove the radiator cap. (Glad I used a big rag) I added water and made it home ok. I thought there was maybe an airlock that had caused the overheat and coolant loss. When it happened again the following day I knew there was a problem and eventually found the thermostat seized. Fitted a new one and never had a problem afterwards.
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Old Sep 16th, 2018, 09:44   #17
Austin160
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Default Dispute advice.

With Morris 1000s and sticking thermostats, the first you knew about it was a boiling-over radiator as you say, since there wasn't a temperature gauge. Again as you rightly say, this needed careful removal of the radiator cap to minimise the risk of having burns, but all important, you had to wait for the system to cool to a reasonable temperature before adding cold water.

Failure to do this could result in thermal shocking and the potential for cracking heads or blocks.

Back to the original post:- by what I understand of it, would I spend on 'expert opinion' to present to court in the hope of winning recompense? No, I don't think I would.
I think I would do as suggested, and invest my money in a pressure tested secondhand head and go forward with experience from there. If the thermostat was the culprit in this then I would certainly invest in a main dealer replacement part rather than an aftermarket one (which can be less reliable) - but this might have been done anyway.
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Old Sep 17th, 2018, 21:43   #18
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To follow up some comments here;

1; The temp gauge has never suggested the car overheated and it didn't lose any coolant
2; The MD has admitted liability for the failed thermostat which they fitted, which was a Subaru item
3; What's wrong with a good s/h head? It won't save me much (in the context of the total spend) and of course if there any more problems it will be down to me as I supplied it. I am also now wondering if replacing just one head is a good idea!

I believe the sequence of events is a failed thermostat and the cracks appearing as a consequence of localised overheating. I realise I can't prove this but it is more likely to me than two catastrophic events happening simultaneously independently of each other.
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Old Sep 18th, 2018, 08:45   #19
Austin160
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Default Dispute Advice.

I'm still not sure that I'm following your logic regarding the failed thermostat being the culprit here, but perhaps I'm missing something, and perhaps a judge would be more up to the understandings of the mechanics of the cooling system of this car, and grant in your favour.

A couple of question remains with me:- if you are claiming the crack resulted from overheating, yet the gauge remained at normal and there was no loss of coolant, how would such (localised?) overheating lead to cracking the head?

Also, if the thermostat failed in the closed position then is it possible that the gauge would not detect a resultant overheat? If it didn't, is it fair to assume that the car did not continue its journey from the point the thermostat stuck and so no excessive overheat and no resultant cracking due to this non existent overheat.

My theory ( and obviously it can only be that) is that this crack developed at the the first failure, and the road to any claim may be the absence of written evidence of pressure testing the head before refitting (this assumes it wasn't). If it was, then end-of.

I feel this whole claim for negligence would be an interesting legal case to follow up on.
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