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New purchased car from dealer, now has engine light on


A week ago i purchased a BMW 320i Coupe from a 2nd hand car garage. When driving it home (150miles) the engine light came on. Rang the dealer which he told me to get the codes investigated. I did and this is the concerns:

  • Catalytic Converter failed.
  • Both Lambda sensors failed.
  • MAF sensor needs replacing.
  • Electric water-pump inoperative.
  • Nox Sensor (Potentially).

Told the dealer, he no says to bring it back to the garage and they will look at it. In the mean time he will provide me with a courtesy car.

Should i allow him to attempt the repair, as dealers will do it as cheap as possible; the parts alone will be over £1000.
Or should i request my money back as the new consumer laws allow you a full refund within 30 days of purchasing the vehicle?

Opinions on the situation please?

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Used car from 2nd hand garage…probably a fixer upper that they didn’t fix correctly I’m guessing. I’d walk away personally if I had that option and had issues within a week of driving out the door, especially from a garage selling it instead of a dealership.

I assume it’s high mileage and there’s no extended warranty with decent coverage they offered you?

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Sounds like they cleared the codes hoping the codes, or you, would not return. If you can get out of this deal, I would. Otherwise keep on the dealer to fix the car. Take it back immediately if the CEL lights again after the “fix”.


Another vote to return vehicle.

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What law allows you to return a used car after 30 days and what state do you live in?

I’d say he lives in the UK given the parts cost to repair the car is 1000 Pounds.


The existence of codes does not mean all those parts are failed. In fact, many of them are likely related to the same issue. If it were me, I would at least let them take a look at it. Most courts in the US would expect that the seller be given a fair chance to rectify the situation. How those affairs are handled in the UK, I have no idea.

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If the consumer laws of The UK allow the OP to return the vehicle and get a refund, that is what I would advise. What Mustangman described is almost surely what the dealership did in order to get you to drive this rolling disaster out of their garage.

In the old days, unscrupulous car dealers would put sawdust into worn-out differentials and gearboxes in order to sucker-in unsuspecting customers. Nowadays, they clear the stored diagnostic trouble codes in order to conceal serious problems, and then hope that you never return.


+1 to @Mustangman and @VDCdriver, get your money back if the deal allows. Even if they fix the car you still have a used high maintenance vehicle . When new, these cars are wonderful, but as they age they get expensive to repair.


If your state’s law allows you to return it for a full refund, that’s what I’d do. This crook screwed you.

Be sure you keep all paperwork including your copies of any shop orders. Your lawyer will need them.

By the way. I’d recommend that the next used car you look at, you get it checked out before you buy it. After is too late.

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Count me as another member of the “get rid of it” club

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Yeah take it back if you can. If the fix was simple or cheap, they would have already done it.


I guess if they’ll take it back and fully refund your money without complaint, that’s the best option. As said above, it’s pretty likely that there’s a single cause for all those fault codes, and it might be something very simple, like an O2 sensor connector got left unplugged.

The OP has said the parts will be about $1000.00 pounds.

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He’s basing that on the assumption all those things need to be replaced. Wouldn’t be the first time someone made the assumption that the existence of a code means that part has failed. And o2 & cat codes often pop up together as just one example…

agreed, if they were inclined to fix the problem they already would have before they sold the car.

I fear that if he takes the car back to them to have it fixed that they will do a temporary fix that will last a bit longer than the 30 day return law so that he wont be able to return it when it breaks again.. I wouldnt trust them.

So sad for you here my friend. I think you should return this car and get a new one. Or you can return it to the dealer and ask them the details, like the charges, how long it will be repaired and really to check out the details of the damages. Thanks for your info here, at least I have the idea on what to choose in buying my new car.

Anybody else notice that this thread is almost a year old?
I’m guessing the OP’s problem has already been solved.

Yeah that little line up above says “11 months later”. In America anyway, you have to bring it back first to let the dealer try and repair it before you can go any further. Don’t know about Europe though although the consumer laws may be more stringent due to xxxxxxxxxx (figure out why yourself then).

That should be socialist bent. (Slow night, but at least it’s above freezing today in Ohio.)