We are motorhome newbies. We called into the Huddersfield branch in June 2015 to look at some motorhomes. We liked the big selection of vehicles and the sales staff were attentive and helpful.
We saw a used van (3 years old, 1 previous owner) liked it and decided to buy. We agreed to collect it in two weeks time, to allow for valeting, minor repairs etc.
On handover, we arrived at the appointed time of 11a.m. Were told van not quite ready and sent to cafe with 10% voucher. In the cafe, we met another couple who were fuming. They had come to collect a new van after trading in a caravan. They were told they had to wait until 3pm despite being told to be there for 10:00. We only had a two hour wait.
The handover was rushed. When we asked questions about filling with water and draining for winter etc, the demonstrator was confused and then said he wasn't that familiar with our make of van. We were also only given one key when there should have been two. The missing key also had the alarm fob on it, which was vital. In the end, Lowdhams contacted the previous owner, who posted the second key and alarm fob to Lowdhams. They should have been aware that it was missing before handover. On the way home, we stopped to put in some diesel and found that the leisure battery cover was hanging open and the lock was missing. We taped it up to return home. We had to return the van and wait two weeks for them to order and fit a new lock to the leisure battery cover.
After our first trip, we found that the hab door wouldn't lock with the fob. Then it wouldn't lock with the key either. We had to leave the van unlocked. Rang Lowdhams and the service woman we spoke to, suggested we were " doing it wrong" . Eventually, after us getting cross, they agreed to send someone to collect the van. When we went to collect the van, after the repair, they explained that there had been a fault but it was now fixed. This 'fix' was temporary. As soon as we got home, it failed to lock.
We rang and complained and were told to book it in and to leave it for two weeks. We did so. On the day before we were due to collect the van, we rang to check whether the problem had been sorted. We were told that the electrician hadn't yet had the opportunity to inspect it. They would need the van for another week. This was really inconvenient as we had planned a trip away.
To cut a long story short, they didn't fix it and we ended up arguing with Lowdhams' service staff, whose attitude was that we were just not locking it correctly and that we were unreasonable to be angry that they'd had the van for 2 weeks and their electrician hadn't looked at the van and needed another week to do so.
The result of their attitude and failure to fix the door, meant that we were no longer prepared to use them for any service or warranty work.
It is also worth noting that Lowdhams had the ECU replaced under warranty. We also had an annual engine service carried out at the same time. We were sent a copy of the invoice from the Peugeot garage which carried out this work for Lowdhams and noted that there was reference to replacing the brake hydraulic block costing £845.41. This work, said to have been carried out, had never been mentioned as being required. Not sure what was going on there as there had been no braking problems reported by them. We weren't required to pay this, but the invoice suggested that work to this value had been carried out. A matter for the warrantor?
Eventually, having lost all faith in Lowdhams, we got Lowdhams to send us a letter authorising any warranty work to be carried out by any approved dealer of our choice. We have found another dealer who sorted the door problem and in whom we have confidence.
All in all, a shame that their after-sales service didn't match their sales service. Their service staff should also be trained in customer relations. Treating customers as idiots isn't constructive. There are other issues, which I will spare readers having to plough through, relating to warranties on items fitted to the van by Lowdhams, where inaccurate and misleading advice was given.
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