Sixteen Hours to Replace a Windscreen washer pump.

As the car trade clammers for new business perhaps they need to review servicing from the customers viewpoint.

You know the drill, the car needs an annual service even though you have covered a third of the service miles interval. The oil and filter rated at 20,000 miles are binned after 6,600 miles (the average annual mileage in the UK) Then you discover they never take the wheels off, looking instead at brakes linings through the alloy wheel. This you find out when you have a puncture and the wheel has bonded to the wheel hub, and the tyre guys have cranked the wheel nut torque to just under the tension stress fracture point.

The rest of the service centres on the diagnostics plug in. This reveals the minimum work required to service the car, the rest remains untouched? Good news for the dealer, bad news when everyone finds this out and takes the car to a local service depot once out of warranty.

And the final bug bear. A warranty repair becomes a battle. The dealer wants to convince you the work is not under warranty – you pay, and leave wondering if the manufacturer is then invoiced as well? No spares are kept; good inventory control, however, having to leave the car all day to find the fault, then return a week later for another 8 hours when they fit the part is not ideal customer service. I had to have a windscreen washer pump replaced recently, which took 16 hours and 8 journeys to deliver and collect the car. Perhaps time to smarten up guys and think of servicing from the customers viewpoint else non warranty work will migrate to the local service guys.

Alistair Owens

The meandering thoughts of someone with too much time on his hands. Tending to see the obscure and irrelevant in most events I have been forced to record this by family members as a means of diverting attention away from them. But I see their plan.

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