Halfords Autocentre fined £47,000 after uncover investigation

10 June 2015

Bitterwallet - Halfords An undercover operation found that a Halfords Autocentre failed to fix 11 out of 20 defects that had been deliberately left by Trading Standards.

The watchdog sent an illegal Vauxhall Astra with broken and missing light bulbs, irregular tyre pressures, oil leaks and faulty windscreen wipers to the centre in Filton, Bristol. The car was supposed to get a major service, which should've cost £235.

Investigators soon found that something was amiss, and told North Avon Magistrates’ Court: "It became obvious that not all the checks were done. Things were ticked as having been done that had not been and the consumer was not made aware (of the defects)."

"This is a national company. A consumer puts a lot of trust and faith in a national firm to do a proper job to ensure a car service is conducted thoroughly and professionally and in these circumstances it was not."

This won't allay some of the fears that many drivers have, that they're being ripped off when it comes to getting their cars fixed or given the once over. This uncover sting came about after the number of complaints about the car industry in the area, were rather high.

Halfords pleaded guilty to eight counts of breaching consumer protection laws and the mechanic who carried out the service, has since resigned. Magistrates fined the company £32,000, ordered them to pay £14,862.04 costs and a £120 victim surcharge.

TOPICS:   Motoring   Scams

6 comments

  • lianne
    I just checked my mot they did and just realised that they've only replaced 1 out of the 2 wiper blades they said needed replacing before passing the mot.
  • Censorship a.
    Nothing new here, I took a car in to one of their centres about 25 years ago (not long after they opened them), and it came out with more faults than it went in with; in fact the car was nearly undrivable when it came out, I needed to get a tow truck as it ground to a halt 1/2 mile from the centre.
  • heather
    Halford shrewsbury was awful! Went their to fit a bulb and they didn't put it all back together properly. Cost me over £200 to have it fixed by a proper mechanic! I wanted a new bulb and they put my safety totally at risk! When I reported it to them they didn't care whatsoever, customer service emails were shocking no apologies just told me if I want a refund I better have receipts! This company has no respect for safety
  • Emma H.
    Halford autocentre in Hemel Hempstead kept my car for over a month to replace a steering wheel. I asked for a major service and when the car was returned it was worse. No service was carried out. We made a huge complaint and got £175 back out of the £700 we paid.!
  • Chris M.
    I do not trust Halfords at all. Not an autocenter job but when I had a parrot mki9200 fitted to my Vauxhall Corsa back in 2010 they fitted it incorrectly, trying to draw power from the air conditioning wiring. They cut the cable to short and as a result the car needed a whole new wiring harness (£700 repair at Vauxhall). Fortunately becuase of the complaints I made at the time Halfords paid for the repair at Vauxhall and paid for Vauxhall to fit a new parrott kit correctly with £100 of store vouchers for the inconvenience. Needless to say the £100 of store vouchers were spent on things they did not have to go near my car for and I have avoided store ever sinse.
  • Jaime
    halfords have just finished giving me the run-around, told them what the faults were after wasting 2 days never even attempted to fix one of the faults Worst garage I've ever used

What do you think?

Connect with Facebook, Twitter, or just enter your email to sign in and comment.

Your comment