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Consumer rights in Portugal regarding a garage

Consumer rights in Portugal regarding a garage

Old Jan 3rd 2024, 8:54 am
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Default Consumer rights in Portugal regarding a garage

We recently took a car into a garage to have some work done which included repairing a rear shock absorber. The garage said they would outline the work they were going to do and tell us the amount it would cost before they did it. They did neither of the above, then we were told the car was ready. When we went to pick it up they had not done the rear shock absorbers but replaced the front ones and the bill was about 400e more than we thought it would be. We paid, then realised that they had done this, stupid, but we were in a rush to get to a medical appontment. They did do the rear shocks awhile we waited which took them 10 minutes. We have to see the garage again today to discuss the situataion.

Do consumers have any rights in Portugal, ie, can we demand they refund the money they charged for the shocks and labour. They took two hours to fix the front shocks only ten minutes to do the job we originally asked them to do and the front shocks were way more expensive than my husband could have bought them for and fitted had he had a worshop to do it in.
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Old Jan 3rd 2024, 12:07 pm
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Default Re: Consumer rights in Portugal regarding a garage

I think you may have difficulties if there isn't a written quote (or email trail) listing the work you requested and estimated price as, otherwise, neither party can substantiate what they say. It's probably best to talk to them and explain what you want, if you want to take it further then their “Livro de Reclamações (complaint’s book)” would be the next option.
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Old Jan 3rd 2024, 1:01 pm
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Default Re: Consumer rights in Portugal regarding a garage

Originally Posted by coleio
I think you may have difficulties if there isn't a written quote (or email trail) listing the work you requested and estimated price as, otherwise, neither party can substantiate what they say. It's probably best to talk to them and explain what you want, if you want to take it further then their “Livro de Reclamações (complaint’s book)” would be the next option.
OK, firstly, this may have happened in Portugal, but it's hardly unknown elsewhere - and the issue of "consumer rights" would be the same wherever you go.... what can you prove to a third party?

I have to agree with what coleio says - if it was a verbal agreement, then it "isn't worth the paper it isn't written on"..... and I don't think "consumer rights" anywhere could protect you. How could you prove that the garage has not done what you asked at a cost you agreed? Your only avenue would be to suggest they had overcharged you.... and even that might not be easy. Equally, your husband's best guess of the likely cost is hardly likely to be pertinent - it certainly won't stand up against an itemised breakdown. As to the overall cost.... I think you'll have a hard job finding anything you could not do cheaper yourself, IF you can get the parts, IF you have the knowledge, IF you have the right environment/equipment.

It's annoying, but it's a lesson to anyone else..... if you're looking at something likely to cost several hundred euros, always get a written estimate/agreement, or else you are reliant on the good faith of someone you dont' know. At least in Portugal there is recourse to the Livro de Reclamações by law.... which might not help you, but could help others.
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Old Jan 3rd 2024, 3:22 pm
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Default Re: Consumer rights in Portugal regarding a garage

Originally Posted by bons
We recently took a car into a garage to have some work done which included repairing a rear shock absorber. The garage said they would outline the work they were going to do and tell us the amount it would cost before they did it. They did neither of the above, then we were told the car was ready. When we went to pick it up they had not done the rear shock absorbers but replaced the front ones and the bill was about 400e more than we thought it would be. We paid, then realised that they had done this, stupid, but we were in a rush to get to a medical appontment. They did do the rear shocks awhile we waited which took them 10 minutes. We have to see the garage again today to discuss the situataion.

Do consumers have any rights in Portugal, ie, can we demand they refund the money they charged for the shocks and labour. They took two hours to fix the front shocks only ten minutes to do the job we originally asked them to do and the front shocks were way more expensive than my husband could have bought them for and fitted had he had a worshop to do it in.
Concerning the time involved for the work, In general it is more time consuming to change front shock absorbers than it is rear ones. Don,t know the type of car but normally, the rear shocks stand alone and are held by just a top and bottom bolt.
The front ones, if they are of the common mcpherson strut type, are located inside the spring assembly so replacement can require more time/work.
However, I would be asking for the old parts that were replaced on the front, and having them checked out.
If they were indeed faulty fair enough, the garage could have saved your life, but if there is nothing wrong with them , that,s another story entirely.
My be worth joining ACAP, they would advise the best proceedure.

Last edited by Dafty; Jan 3rd 2024 at 3:25 pm.
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Old Jan 3rd 2024, 4:25 pm
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Default Re: Consumer rights in Portugal regarding a garage

They should not have done work that wasn't agreed; at the same time, if the front shocks were leaking (the only fault that can be detected without a specialized machine that only inspection stations have) then they may have been acting in good faith.

The thing is, you paid already. The odds of getting anything back are remote.
As Dafty suggested, the garage should return the old parts to you; but in reality, it's really difficult to know whether they were leaking, since the oil could have been wiped off during removal (likely), or faked by adding oil onto it after removal (also likely).

If either had any oil leaking (they only have a tiny bit in them), then it is correct to change both.
My front shocks lasted 20 years and 300,000km.
I've never changed the rears.

In summary; forget about it if you can.
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Old Jan 3rd 2024, 6:28 pm
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Default Re: Consumer rights in Portugal regarding a garage

Thanks for your replies. We had a list from IMT that the car had failed on and they had the list. The front shocks were not ddeemed to be bad by IMT. I think the rubber might haave looked a bit worn and the mechanic thought that it was the front shocks and didn't do the backs at the time. Anyway, a lesson learned, although they did say they would not do any work until they told us what they were doing( which should have included doing the front shocks if they thought they were bad) and giving us a final amount until we told them to go ahead with the work.

We come to an agreement with them, but we wouldn't use them again. It's useful to know about orgainastions stated above for any future concerns. Thanks again.
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Old Jan 3rd 2024, 8:41 pm
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Default Re: Consumer rights in Portugal regarding a garage

Dare we ask... What was the garage?

Having all 4 shock absorbers changed on my Audi next week (160,000kms, 11 years). Fronts failed IPO before Christmas, was advised to change them all whilst doing it as they are magnetic ride height control to avoid old/new riding at different heights.
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Old Jan 3rd 2024, 8:46 pm
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Default Re: Consumer rights in Portugal regarding a garage

Originally Posted by Score76
Dare we ask... What was the garage?

Having all 4 shock absorbers changed on my Audi next week (160,000kms, 11 years). Fronts failed IPO before Christmas, was advised to change them all whilst doing it as they are magnetic ride height control to avoid old/new riding at different heights.
Where is your garage?
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Old Jan 3rd 2024, 9:02 pm
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Default Re: Consumer rights in Portugal regarding a garage

Lagoa.
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Old Jan 4th 2024, 9:04 am
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Default Re: Consumer rights in Portugal regarding a garage

Originally Posted by Score76
Lagoa.
Not the same garage, nowhere near it! I wouldn't say the garage was bad, just poor communication and they didn't do the job they were supposed to do. They were supposed to contact us to tell us what needed doing and how much it would cost before they did any work.
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Old Jan 4th 2024, 10:30 am
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Default Re: Consumer rights in Portugal regarding a garage

Can't have been that bad if you won't name it.
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Old Jan 4th 2024, 10:49 am
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Default Re: Consumer rights in Portugal regarding a garage

Originally Posted by Score76
Can't have been that bad if you won't name it.
Or maybe she's aware of the strange laws of Portugal and wary of ending up in deep shit
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Old Jan 4th 2024, 11:09 am
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Default Re: Consumer rights in Portugal regarding a garage

Originally Posted by dingg
Or maybe she's aware of the strange laws of Portugal and wary of ending up in deep shit
I'm not sure they're all that strange but there are laws against defamation and it certainly isn't wise to bandy unsubstantiated accusations about, naming names, on publicly-accessible forums. They can end up being contested in court.
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Old Jan 4th 2024, 11:47 am
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Default Re: Consumer rights in Portugal regarding a garage

Originally Posted by macliam

As to the overall cost.... I think you'll have a hard job finding anything you could not do cheaper yourself, IF you can get the parts, IF you have the knowledge, IF you have the right environment/equipment.

.
I get my car parts from AutoDoc. I have bought quite a bit of stuff from them over the years without any problems. I even get tyres from them.

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Old Jan 4th 2024, 3:23 pm
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Default Re: Consumer rights in Portugal regarding a garage

Originally Posted by philat98
I get my car parts from AutoDoc. I have bought quite a bit of stuff from them over the years without any problems. I even get tyres from them.
We'll look into that, thanks.
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