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Old 15-01-2004   #1
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Clutch & gearbox issues

I have recently had my clutch replaced due to an oil leak from the gearbox. Luckily the work is covered by my warranty, however a dispute has arisen at how long it should take to do such a job. Now, the warranty company says that it should take 3.2 hours and it is a very straight-forward procedure of replacing the seal. However, the garage is saying that they have had to remove and strip the gearbox to get to the seal so that a new one can be fitted. HELP!!!!
Does anybody know who is telling the truth?? as I somehow have to prove that it really did take 6 hours to fix!!!!
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Old 15-01-2004   #2
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6 hours seems about right to me. 3.2 would assume slightly legendary mechanics working in a rush.

They're right in that it's straightforward once you're there, but it's a nat's b*ll*x of a job getting to it. Certainly the gearbox would have had to come out, and clearly the leak necessitated the strip to see if there was any further damage as much as anything, so the warranty company are being a bit tight-arsed here.

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Old 15-01-2004   #3
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Thanks for the sppedy response, at least that has put my mind at rest and that the garage has not ripped me off. However, I need to prove this to the warranty company so that I can claim the full 6 hours back as at the mo' they only want to pay me 3.2 hours, because that is what the book tells them. Rules, eh?!
Do you know anywhere that I could find this kind of info out from so that I can print it off and send it to them?
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Old 16-01-2004   #4
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You could try asking the mechanics who did the work to write a signed note, giving details of the work and how long it took.

I did a gearbox swap in my Punto a few months back, but that was just a straight swap without doing any work on either of the gearboxes. It took me and my mate (who's a bit of a mechanical guru) around 3 hours just to remove the knackered 'box and put the new one in. Stripping the 'box can't be the easiest of jobs so 6 hours sounds pretty good really!

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Old 16-01-2004   #5
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Yeah Jonny's suggestion is the only really valid one. The trouble with warranty companies is they have everything written down neatly in a book so they can look it up and quote it and no real understanding of the obstacles or difficulties that can await you when you get underneath the bonnet of a car. A leak in a gearbox is a serious thing you want to fix right first time and well worth spending some time doing it properly.

It's not something more than 2 people can work on because there's not enough room. Well, anyway, I'm sure the garage can provide a cover note explaining the time it takes to do the job properly. In fact, thinking about it more, I wouldn't be entirely surprised if that warranty quote isn't the standard clutch-change time. I wouldn't put that passed them either.

if they won't accept the word of your garage we'll scour the net in search of some official job times from Fiat or mechanics institutes or something.

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Old 16-01-2004   #6
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Quote Quote:
Originally posted by pritch


I wouldn't be entirely surprised if that warranty quote isn't the standard clutch-change time. I wouldn't put that passed them either.

Spirito di Punto | M-reg 55SX, black, 5dr. Clear repeaters. I'm fitting remote locking this week!!
I'd agree with that Pritch - if what I've been told is true, FIAT dealers remove the gearbox completely to replace the clutch. Not really necessary; it can be done with the gearbox still in the car (like wot I do, takes 2 hours at most [8D]), but FIAT like to do it the hard way as it makes them a few more (or perhaps a few more hundred ) in labour charges. [xx(]
There used to be a guy on this forum (he had an argy and left B)), named FiatExpert, I think, who was an official FIAT mechanic. If I can track him down I'll see what he says :D

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Old 16-01-2004   #7
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Well, you were right, the warrenty company are only gonna pay out for the time it takes to do a standard clutch change, they will not believe the garage when they say that it took them 6 hours. They just will not have it that they had to take out the gearbox and fiddle with that for a bit. However, I have got a fax from a Fiat dealer stating the book time to be 4.2 hours, so hopefully they will believe that and I can claim back an extra hour, every little helps I guess!!
Thanks so much for your help and advice and if you think of anything else then just let me know.
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Old 17-01-2004   #8
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Just got a reply from FiatExpert, he used to work for FIAT:

Quote Quote:
Yes I assume its a punto 1.1, 1.2 8v. Its 3.25hours for the box out then a further 2.2 hours for strip and replace seal as its inside the box not external.
So they owe you nearly 5.5 hours minimum! :D

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Old 17-01-2004   #9
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and you can add to that time figure any time needed to clear away leaked gearbox oil, which is foul-smelling stuff amongst other things.

I knew it, I knew they'd quote you for a clutch change only, the feckless morons.

Well, what they've basically admitted is paying you for a different, less expensive job than the one you've had done. Fight your corner Sally because this is a nonsense.

leaves me speechless sometimes.. B)

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Old 17-01-2004   #10
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Same thing happened to mine a few months back, a seal went in the gearbox, so the clutch kept slipping from the dripping oil. It was a canny big job, as they had to strip the gearbox to get to the seal (the seal was at the top end of the box). So 3 hours is a joke - full days graft i would have thought.
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