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grasmere59

Frozen Van!

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I hope all turns out well and your steady approach is a wise one I'm sure.

 

Whenever I've had my caravan serviced the last two actions before I hitch up is for the owner (of the Service Centre) to ask a service engineer that didn't do the service to check his colleague has the correct torque on the wheel nuts and that the drainage taps are open.

 

Once confirmed I am allowed to hitch up and get on my way!

 

G.

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As a time served mechanical engineer and a fully qualified gas engineer in domestic and commercial fields i am quite capable of carrying the annual service to our caravan but as the all important "stamp" in the service record was needed for the warranty we felt it best left to the NCC workshop and we thought it would help with any resale/trade in value even after as now the warranty period has expired but i think i will cancel the next years service we have booked and do it myself.

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As a time served mechanical engineer and a fully qualified gas engineer in domestic and commercial fields i am quite capable of carrying the annual service to our caravan but as the all important "stamp" in the service record was needed for the warranty we felt it best left to the NCC workshop and we thought it would help with any resale/trade in value even after as now the warranty period has expired but i think i will cancel the next years service we have booked and do it myself.

 

Good for you. ..

 

Just a note for all that are reading the post, the NCC workshop doesnt exist. ..

There are around 300 fully qualified "Approved Workshops" some are dealers, some are mobile, some offer both services. We are all assessed & have to have undertaken many courses to allow us to belong to the Approved Workshop scheme. The scheme is a joint enterprise between the Caravan Club, The Camping & Caravan Club & administered by the NCC (National Caravan Council).

We all follow a code of conduct and should offer an excellent customer service. If anyone has a problem however small the Approved Workshop should deal with it fairly & efficiently. If there is any cause to complain please do in the first instance.

Please follow link below for the Approved Workshop web site for much more info.

Thanks for reading.

 

 

http://www. approvedworkshops. co. uk/approved-touring-caravan-motorhome-servicing/

 

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Thanks for the link,looking at it there are a few NCC approved workshops in our area that we will be looking into.

Edited by grasmere59

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According to the ratings the fixed service centre we use at the moment gets 60% of 8 surveys carried out and a mobile in are area gets 91% of 33 surveys so the figures speak for themselves.

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What concerns me is that if that box was "ticked"(drained down) and not done what other boxes have been "ticked" and work not done.

 

The years have made me very sinicle about services both car and caravan. I have found it makes no difference if they are main dealers or one man bands, both have tried to dupe me. Obviously some, maybe many, are trustworthy and reliable, doing a first clas job, the trick is finding them. Once you have, build up a relationship and stick with them.

 

I now travel an extra 20 miles each way to avoid my local service centre as I find that Forest of Dean caravans do it for me. Lets hope it stays that way as I have a service next month. Will be checking it is drained down when I get it back after your experience.

 

A long time ago a friend of mine who owned and ran a car garage and always did a first class job, was convinced that a lot of his return customers came back because he gave the engine compartment a clean. (This was in the days when they got very dirty and greasy).

 

Good service cosmetically is important but there also must be substance, communication, trust and customer care.

 

John

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The years have made me very sinicle about services both car and caravan. I have found it makes no difference if they are main dealers or one man bands, both have tried to dupe me. Obviously some, maybe many, are trustworthy and reliable, doing a first clas job, the trick is finding them. Once you have, build up a relationship and stick with them.

 

I now travel an extra 20 miles each way to avoid my local service centre as I find that Forest of Dean caravans do it for me. Lets hope it stays that way as I have a service next month. Will be checking it is drained down when I get it back after your experience.

 

A long time ago a friend of mine who owned and ran a car garage and always did a first class job, was convinced that a lot of his return customers came back because he gave the engine compartment a clean. (This was in the days when they got very dirty and greasy).

 

Good service cosmetically is important but there also must be substance, communication, trust and customer care.

 

John

 

Here, here!

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I now travel an extra 20 miles each way to avoid my local service centre as I find that Forest of Dean caravans do it for me.

 

Hi John,

 

We are also "Forest of Dean" customers and rate them highly - however, they do not appear in the listings on the Approved Workshops website, even though they are Bailey approved (and probably Swift, as they sell them as well). Should this be a concern?

 

Glen.

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Hi John,

 

We are also "Forest of Dean" customers and rate them highly - however, they do not appear in the listings on the Approved Workshops website, even though they are Bailey approved (and probably Swift, as they sell them as well). Should this be a concern?

 

Glen.

 

I would question them. ..ask them why they are not members. I can't think of any justifiable reason why they don't belong to the Approved Workshop scheme.

Please remember, you won't know if a caravan has been correctly serviced or repaired until it goes wrong.

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I would question them. ..ask them why they are not members. I can't think of any justifiable reason why they don't belong to the Approved Workshop scheme.

Please remember, you won't know if a caravan has been correctly serviced or repaired until it goes wrong.

 

I did not realise that Forest of Dean were not on approved workshop list. I never thought to check, I just assumed that as main dealers who hold the franchise and are authorised to do guarantee work, that they would be. They also hold the distribution contract for Bailey. I will question that point with them.

 

I agree you would not know if someone is servicing correctly until something goes wrong. I tend to go by the feedback I get. As a practical person I feel I would know if they were trying to pull the wool over my eyes. Established companies also have to build a reputation.

 

The place I previously used I think did the service fine, but the customer relations received from their front office was shameful. Therefore they lost my custom. This was a place I had used for many years and at one time were quite friendly with the owners. Due to takeovers and change of management they managed to loose their personal touch.

 

John

 

 

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It is not mandatory to be a member of any scheme.

 

Forest of Dean are authorised Bailey dealers who are also able to carry out Transient Warranty work. Any customer with a Bailey caravan can have their caravan serviced by the company in the knowledge that the service will conform to Bailey's procedures.

 

Please remember, you won't know if a caravan has been correctly serviced or repaired until it goes wrong.
This would apply to any service or repair regardless of the repairer being a member of a scheme.

 

I had my caravan serviced by a very well known and well promoted member of the AWS who was highly rated on the scheme's website. The dealer refused to answer simple questions I posed about the paperwork, which did not appear to have been completed correctly. When matters reached an impasse the dealer invited me to take my caravan elsewhere for future servicing.

 

For the caravan's next service I found a mobile service technician who carried out the service in a professional and well documented manner.

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It is not mandatory to be a member of any scheme.

 

Forest of Dean are authorised Bailey dealers who are also able to carry out Transient Warranty work. Any customer with a Bailey caravan can have their caravan serviced by the company in the knowledge that the service will conform to Bailey's procedures.

 

This would apply to any service or repair regardless of the repairer being a member of a scheme.

 

I had my caravan serviced by a very well known and well promoted member of the AWS who was highly rated on the scheme's website. The dealer refused to answer simple questions I posed about the paperwork, which did not appear to have been completed correctly. When matters reached an impasse the dealer invited me to take my caravan elsewhere for future servicing.

 

For the caravan's next service I found a mobile service technician who carried out the service in a professional and well documented manner.

 

Nobody said membership was compulsory. I just can't see why any caravan servicing company whether a dealer or a sole trader are not members as it proves to their customers that they use fully trained people to do the work (if they service a caravan correctly using correctly trained people why not become a member of the Approved Workshop?).

It also gives the consumer a body to use if there is a dispute regarding work undertaken.

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Nobody said membership was compulsory. I just can't see why any caravan servicing company whether a dealer or a sole trader are not members as it proves to their customers that they use fully trained people to do the work (if they service a caravan correctly using correctly trained people why not become a member of the Approved Workshop?).

It also gives the consumer a body to use if there is a dispute regarding work undertaken.

 

It appears to suit the business model or business plan of Forest of Dean caravans who appear to have been in business far longer than some members of the AWS.

 

As a consumer I am wary if not very cynical about trade bodies such as the NCC masquerading as the consumers friend which, by definition, they are not.

 

BTW I am well aware that the CC is both a member of the NCC and a supporter of the AWS.

 

In the example I gave in my previous post, referral to the AWS or NCC by myself would have been pointless - and I have the dealer's email to prove that point.

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Nobody said membership was compulsory. I just can't see why any caravan servicing company whether a dealer or a sole trader are not members as it proves to their customers that they use fully trained people to do the work (if they service a caravan correctly using correctly trained people why not become a member of the Approved Workshop?).

It also gives the consumer a body to use if there is a dispute regarding work undertaken.

 

We bought our van and have it serviced at YC Leisure near Doncaster.

 

Been going donkeys years but aren't in the Approved Workshop scheme according to the AWS website.

 

It only shows two fixed base approved workshops in South Yorkshire and they are Coopers Caravans and South Yorkshire Caravans.

 

Ian

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We bought our van and have it serviced at YC Leisure near Doncaster.

 

Been going donkeys years but aren't in the Approved Workshop scheme according to the AWS website.

 

It only shows two fixed base approved workshops in South Yorkshire and they are Coopers Caravans and South Yorkshire Caravans.

 

Ian

 

Good choice Ian

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Booked second service today with Forest of Dean, asked about approval, they are happy that they are approved by Bailey and Swift, seems to suit them. They also charge 90 pounds less than Bailey suggested 250 that's 160 plus 9:20 for nuts plus vat. Not sure what is happening with anti freeze change, they are getting back to me on that.

 

John

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Booked second service today with Forest of Dean, asked about approval, they are happy that they are approved by Bailey and Swift, seems to suit them. They also charge 90 pounds less than Bailey suggested 250 that's 160 plus 9:20 for nuts plus vat. Not sure what is happening with anti freeze change, they are getting back to me on that.

 

John

 

I'm still very interested to know why they don't join the AWS.

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Guess we'll never know, but we'll certainly be sad to have to take our new caravan elsewhere, as they really have been excellent in our eyes.

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Well a quick update,i left a msg on the answerphone at the workshop last sat morn after i found out it was frozen up and no reply mon,i tried to get hold of them twice monday,three times tues and no answer,i suppose the weather might be a factor but don't they check there answerphone! Finally got hold of them just before lunch today (me having to ring them i might add),i spoke to the workshop manager who said "we always drain down the vans before they go to customer",well not this one i said! He said we very rarely get frost damage to vans nowadays so let it thaw out and put some water in the system and see how it goes. I thought at the minimum he would have it back and check it over as it's there fault it's froze up in the first place,well i think i'll cancel the Jan 2014 service with them and look elswhere.

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Well finally got round to filling system up and testing the water heater etc and all seems o. k. so i think i had a lucky escape.

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So pleased it all worked out for you in the end - must have been an anxious time waiting to see if anything sprung a leak!

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i spoke to the workshop manager who said "we always drain down the vans before they go to customer",well not this one i said! He said we very rarely get frost damage to vans nowadays so let it thaw out and put some water in the system and see how it goes. I thought at the minimum he would have it back and check it over as it's there fault it's froze up in the first place,well i think i'll cancel the Jan 2014 service with them and look elsewhere.

With respect, the dealer's response in my opinion is appalling. Clearly they do NOT always drain the vans before they go to the customer, or you would not have been having that conversation with the workshop manager. If frozen pipes can cause damage in an insulated house, how much more likely is there to be damage if they freeze in a much less insulated caravan with plastic taps and a water pump!

Fortunately you appear to have had a lucky escape, but I wouldn't give that dealer the chance to do it to you again; so take your own advice and cancel next year's service now. Be polite but tell them in writing, not over the phone, that following the way you have been treated, you are no longer confident in them and so you are cancelling the 2014 service.

Then put it down to experience, and look forward to enjoying your caravan trips, not forgetting of course to book in good time for a service elsewhere next year.

Holidaymaker.

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This does seem to be a common practice, my van was drained down, but that still left the pump full of water.

 

I am hoping that I found and defrosted it before any damage was done.

 

Steve W

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This does seem to be a common practice, my van was drained down, but that still left the pump full of water.

 

I am hoping that I found and defrosted it before any damage was done.

 

Steve W

Was that the same UNAPPROVED workshop?

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Was that the same UNAPPROVED workshop?

 

No. It was a Swift approved workshop, one of the biggest in the area, I think they just can't be bothered to disconnect the pump and make sure it is completely empty

Edited by Steve W77

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