Anti-perforation warranty

The consumer’s issue:

I contacted the manufacturer because there is corrosion on my vehicle which has a 12-year anti-perforation warranty. The dealership assessed my car and they explained the cost of repairs was only covered up to 50%. They couldn’t explain at the time why this was the case, so the car was booked in again. I was then informed that the warranty had still been declined on the basis that it was edge and fold corrosion. I know about rust, as I run a classic car restoration company, and this is spider rust and sill damage coming from the inside out, and not the rolled edge. I would like the manufacturer to cover the full cost of the claim under the warranty.”

The accredited business’ response:

  • We completed a full investigation, including paint depth readings, and offered a 50% reduction off the cost of the repair.
  • This was because it was deemed that the corrosion was not through corrosion, but perforation, and was therefore not covered under the terms and conditions of the anti-perforation warranty.
  • We had the car inspected by an independent engineer, who also concluded that the corrosion was edge and fold corrosion which is not covered. As such, we are not prepared to pay for the warranty claim and the goodwill offer has been withdrawn.

The adjudication outcome:

  • The adjudicator didn’t uphold the customer’s complaint. That’s because the technical evidence did show that the corrosion was edge and fold corrosion, and, as this isn’t covered under the terms of the warranty as it isn’t through corrosion, the manufacturer did not have to pay.
  • The consumer disputed this on the basis that she didn’t feel the rust was edge and fold, and subsequently obtained a technical report.
  • The case went to the ombudsman for a final decision.

The ombudsman’s final decision:

  • The ombudsman considered the technical reports commissioned by the vehicle manufacturer and the consumer.
  • The report from the manufacturer’s independent inspector was very specific that the corrosion was edge and fold, not through corrosion.
  • Whilst it said there was no external influences causing the corrosion, the report from the consumer’s inspector did not specifically state it was through corrosion.
  • On reading both reports, it looked like the corrosion was under the paint but above the metal.
  • As it did not come from within the metal panel itself, the issue would not be covered under warranty.

Conclusion:

  • The complaint was not upheld in favour of the consumer within the ombudsman’s final decision.