How Kwik Fit risked my life to make a sale. Shocking exclusive.

It’s not often – if ever – that I use the blog to have a bash at Mr Corporate: I have no need to, and have worked with a number of outstanding corporates in the last 10+ years.

Until today.

The story is concerning Kwik Fit. How they attempt to sell non-required expensive items to trusting customers. How they lie about the work they carry out on customers cars. How, in one case, they even left the car as a death trap and sent the customer on their way.

That unfortunate customer was me.

I’ve given Kwik Fit management the opportunity to address the issues – by email more than 10 days ago, and back in October and November, when the regional director went round all the Kwik Fit Bristol branches to strong-arm the managers regarding their service techniques. He even moved the manager of the branch where my car was turned into a death trap to another branch regionally.

Was I, the customer, contacted at any time then? No.

Have I been contacted regarding the email below? No.

Are Kwik Fit management so concerned about risking customers’ lives they will resolve the issues? No

Customer service which risks lives – it’s always going to be worth reporting. Whatever you do, please do NOT take your car to Kwik Fit for repairs. Unless you’re happy to spend excessive money, have your time wasted, and possibly your life put at risk.

Here’s the email sent 10 days ago, to the regional director and Kwik Fit MD Ian Fraser:

I write to you further to my experiences of Kwik Fit at your Whiteladies Road, Clifton, Bristol branch – I have included the Kwik Fit Managing Director Mr Fraser, as well as the Guardian Money consumer letters editorial contact on this email, to ensure you actually respond externally to the issues. I suspect that much of this information will be news to Mr Fraser, given your previous conduct of sweeping the issues under the carpet and not contacting me, the customer, directly to apologise and resolve this.

As you are well aware, I visited the Whiteladies Road Kwik Fit branch in October 2009, with brake pads and discs needing replacing on the rear of my mini cooper S. This work was completed the same day for £249.64. Your branch manager Robert Sandow also tried to sell me new front tyres at £325, which were, I later discovered, not actually legally necessary at that time.

Having driven my car less than three miles, I was aware of the brake warning light still being illuminated on my dashboard, as well as the rear wheels still squeaking irrespective of braking or not. I returned to the branch, where Mr Sandow informed me the electronic system on the cooper S would reset within 50 miles and that the brake pads and discs were “settling in”. Mr Sandow also informed me that it could well be the caliper needing replacing, which would cost “up to £350″ to replace. All nonsense.

At the time I was commuting to work some 150 miles North each day, and within a further 48 hours the issues had not been resolved. I contacted the Whiteladies Road garage, and was told to bring in the car for a further check.

I gave permission for the caliper part to be ordered, and was told it would be ready to be fitted on the Monday. I took time off work, losing two days’ consulting time (£600), as the caliper item which arrived 24 hours late into the Whiteladies Road was in fact the wrong size. I was told I would have to wait another 24 hours for the correct-sized caliper to be delivered to the branch – which resulted in another day off work on Tuesday.

In the interim period, I also had the work independently checked. I discovered that the brake pads had not been fitted correctly: in fact, one of the brake pads was metal only on one side, with no pad. Hitting metal-on-metal on each contact, which was of course incredibly dangerous. The fact that this work has been cleared and passed as road-worthy still makes me shudder.

Another interesting fact to come from that independent check was that the rear caliper was perfectly fine and did not need replacing. Furthermore, the brake warning light had remained on because the mechanic at Whiteladies Road had not re-connected it – a shoddy example of missing even the simplest details.

On insisting that the replacement brake pads were to be of genuine Mini/BMW quality, and not the lesser-quality pads and discs used from Unipart by Kwik Fit, Mr Sandow informed me via a telephone call he would “see what he could do, but fitting genuine parts was not usual Kwik Fit procedure” which gave me further cause for concern.

Eventually, genuine parts were fitted on the car, a number of weeks after the initial dangerous installation had been noted.

I had posted on my Bristol editor blog around my uncomfortable experiences with Kwik Fit and how dreadful and dangerous customer services were delivered. I am aware that you had read this blog post. I am aware that you subsequently visited all the Bristol branches at this time – October 2009 – and gave clear warnings to your branch managers that work was to be watched carefully, and I understand you were very concerned about the editorial contained in my blog at that time. So concerned, in fact, that at no point did you contact me, the customer.

The matter was brushed under the carpet. Mr Sandow, whom I understand previously worked as a Manager at McDonalds, was moved to another Kwik Fit branch in Filton, Bristol, however you did not contact me at any time leading up to the end of 2009 to ensure the matters were resolved to my complete satisfaction.

I had been hoping to hear from you, as I have been subjected to poor customer service, dangerous mechanical work on my car, no offer of recompense for working time lost, the insult of mis-diagnosis of the faults on my car, not to mention attempts to sell me items for my car which were not needed. You do not seem concerned that your staff had turned my car into a death trap, wasted my time and cost me money, as well as not addressing the issues directly with me, the customer, and offering an apology and some kind of recompense.

Although I have deleted the blog post from October, if I do not receive a satisfactory result from this email, I will re-post the updated experiences on my Bristol Editor blog, covering your lack of customer service after a Kwik Fit branch effectively turned my car into a death trap.

Just so you know, my Bristol Editor is read by approximately 300 people daily, and is featured three times per week on www.journalism.co.uk, the UK’s premiere journalism website, where a considerable number of national newspaper journalists and editors review the content for story leads and articles regularly.

I also have a Twitter feed with more than 1,100 followers – a mix of customers, journalists, editors, online reporters etc. I will have no hesitation in also posting this unresolved story there. As you will see, I have included the Guardian Money editorial contact in this email, so their consumer affairs contact can review the information and contact me directly should they feel the story is of interest. I hope to hear from you within the next 7 days, or unfortunately I will be forced to post the details online.

I will also consider posting my experience on Review sites such as:

http://www.dooyoo.co.uk/transport-automobile-services/kwik-fit/1384001/

Please reply in writing only, via this email address, as I am not prepared to engage in unrecorded telephone conversations. I am giving you the opportunity to resolve this with a written email proposing solutions. I hope that you take appropriate action this time, rather than attempting to keep it as an internal matter, and not contacting the customer directly with an offer of resolution.

Not even as much as an apology has thusfar been offered. I am, indeed, ‘amazed at what you do’.

Regards,

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184 Responses

  1. Sue Smith says:

    Just found your site. This is a copy of the letter I sent Kwik-Fit and guess what, I’ve had no reply.
    Dear Sir

    It is with regret that I find myself having to write to you with regard to the services that your Company have supplied me.

    On the 4th August 2012 I took my car into your Penzance depot, as I had a grinding noise coming from my driver’s side front wheel. As I had had the same noise three years previously I more or less knew that I needed new brake pads and possibly new brake discs. Also as I had had the work done at the same premises before I knew that the brake pads would be free, whereas the last time I had been charged £57.90 for the pads. Total of previous bill was £141.29 (of which I enclose a copy). So this time around I expected my bill to be around £100 taking into consideration inflation etc.

    The technician asked me if I was there for a free brake check and I assumed that this was the way they proceeded , so I agreed. Oh what a mistake that was. He came back saying that I needed new brake discs (which I expected). On top of that I needed two new brake hoses as mine were rusty, so being a woman and not really knowing much about it, I agreed for them to be replaced, not knowing the exhorbitant price I was going to be charged. He also asked if I had had my brake fluid changed recently as it should be changed regularly. I didn’t know so agreed to the fluid being changed. Oh dear, another mistake on my part. The parts were ordered and would be an hour to arrive and then it would be another hour for the fitting.

    I was not told before the hoses were fitted or the brake fluid changed how much it was going to cost. It was only when I was presented with the bill that I questioned £110.20 for the hoses and £39.95 for the brake fluid. I was then told by the supervisor that I had agreed to this work. Yes I agreed to it but certainly did not expect to pay such prices.

    I have since looked into the cost of the hoses and I know that you get your parts from Mill Auto Supplies. An acquaintance of mine who works in the motor industry rang Mill Auto Supplies to get me a price for the said items.

    The brake discs are £14.76p plus vat for a pair. The hoses are £13.39p plus vat for each one. These amounts enabled me to make a breakdown of the prices I was charged.

    Brake Discs:- Charge to me 95.40
    Less vat (15.90)
    Net cost 79.50
    Less Net cost of brake discs pair (14.76) Mill Auto Supplies
    Labour charge inc oheads 64.74 per hour

    Brake Hoses:- Charge to me 110.20
    Less vat (18.37)
    Net cost 91.83
    Less net cost of brake hoses x2 (26.78) Mill Auto Supplies
    Labour charge inc oheads 65.05 per hour

    Brake Fluid Renewal:-
    Charge to me 39.95
    Less vat (6.67)
    Net cost 33.28
    Less net cost DOT4 brake fluid 250ml (4.16) Halfords fluid 250ml 4.99p Labour chare inc ohead 29.12 per hour

    So basically you have charged me £158.91p per hour for labour and overheads. This is disgusting and I would like to know how you justify these prices.

    I enclose copies of the paperwork and I am sending a copy of this letter to Trading Standards.

    I look forward to a response from you regarding this matter.

    Some chance of a response from them. They are rip off merchants of the worse kind. I feel like making a sandwich board informing the public of Kwik fits practises and walking up and down outside their premises in the hope of detracting people from using them.

  2. Sue Smith says:

    Well well. After posting on here last night, I had a phone call from Kwik Fit this dinnertime from a Crayne Heath. After a conversation where he was justifying the charges that I was complaining about, he then went on to offer me a refund of £60 which I accepted.
    I also posted on a FB site re Kwik fit – worst corporate uk company, which I got from one of your posts.
    So perhaps Kwik Fit are now listening but we all need to shout louder.

  3. Very interesting post and its vital that you are posting such stories.
    We wrote this open letter to Kwik-Fit ourselves…
    You can view the original here: http://www.tyrequote.com/blog/dear-kwik-fit-concerned-10-2012/

    The following is the second in our series of open letters and addressed as an open letter to those at head office at Kwik-Fit. At no point do we intend to cause any distress to any parties mentioned. We readers will understand our perspective and perhaps share our views. The issues raised in this letter are by no means breaking news rather that they have been around for some time however no party has yet to bring them to the forefront for people to discuss. We hope that Kwik-Fit will kindly acknowledge out words and we look forward to receiving a response.

    What is so special about Kwik-Fit? Their customer service or their ability to saturate a market?

    Dear Kwik-Fit,

    Nobody can take away from you the success Kwik-Fit as a company has enjoyed from its humble beginnings back in Edinburgh. Nor can they deny the success Sir Tom Farmer has achieved through building a company solely on good, strong disciplined customer service. I am sure Sir Tom Farmer himself didn’t even dare to dream of the success Kwik-Fit would later achieve. So, well done you.

    Coming from such a humble background I am sure that someone, somewhere in your corporate head office has given a thought to your competitors and who you should be “crushing”. You already have a big piece of the pie, you know your market and you used to target it well. Lately though you seem to have lost your direction and what aspect of the market you are actually targeting. It raises the concern, where exactly do you want to go in such a diverse market when there is enough room for everyone?

    You are a clever bunch though, it has to be said. A company with the power to monopolize the market is something some people can only dream of. You hold a lot of playing cards, and you know it. After all you have behind you a company who are one of the largest tyre wholesalers in the UK, which effectively means you can control market prices. Clever. Still you are forgetting something rather crucial…

    They say “don’t forget your roots”, but it seems to us Kwik-Fit that sadly you are. From your proud beginnings of offering exceptional customer service, clients did not mind paying a few extra pounds to receive it. In fact, it made you what you are today. A company with an excellent foundation of offering exceptional customer service. However you are now diving into a market of the “budgets” which was the only gap independent garages had been left to survive on. Not only are you compromising your philosophy but also the independents. Just because customers are becoming more price conscious does not mean that you need to follow suit and saturate a market which is covered by the independents. Take the software company Apple for example. When do you ever see them slashing prices to fit with the market? The answer is; you don’t. They have been built of a reputation of good customer service, just like you had been. Now though, you have moved into a market which was happily being covered by the independents, and now they simply cannot compete with your hefty marketing budgets.

    You should be proud of your humble beginnings, and support independent retailers, not aim to kill them off at any given opportunity. Other companies who monopolize their markets are slowly finding out that eventually the tables will turn; customers who may have previously been loyal too your low prices may suddenly re-discover that they would like their local greengrocer back and a personal dedicated service rather than being another number through the door.Take Tesco’s for example, last month they announced their first drop in profits since 1994. These are one of the companies who killed off the local greengrocer so that they could control the market share, these are the ones who crushed small local independent filling stations so they could dictate fuel prices to the public, and now these are ones who are eventually paying the price because they forgot their roots. Will you be next?

    You came from humble beginnings, but now you’re forgetting who you are and in the process of becoming a big player your killing the little people along the way. Where does it end? At what point will you stop? Will it be when every independent garage has closed their doors and you and the other nationals are the only ones left standing. Then how will you compete with them?

    There should be room for everyone in this market, but right now there is too much foul play. You’ve not paid the price yet, but ask one of the 30 small independent garages who close their doors for the last time every month in the UK how it feels to go out of business because of nationals like you suffocating them how it feels. Don’t you think it is time you took a step back and reminded yourselves of your roots, who you are and where you really want to be in 20 years time?

    I’ll leave you with one final concern to ponder upon. Since Sir Tom Farmer sold Kwik-Fit, not one takeover company has been able to match the original service Sir Tom Farmer delivered. All you need to do is search Kwik-Fit online to find various levels of feedback and questionable quotes you have given unsuspecting customers. But whilst you may be lowering prices, are you compromising customer service? What is your sole priority these days? Increasing profit margins or begin repairing the damage to your reputation? Remember, the foundation of Kwik-Fit was customer service; don’t lower your prices as well as your standards, and know exactly what part of the market you want a slice of.

    Yours Sincerely,

    Frances,

    TyreQuote.

    DISCLAIMER: Some readers may notice that this is the second ‘open letter’ we have posted recently. We are by no means on a vendetta or hate crusade against anyone. We simply believe that our thoughts, opinions and beliefs have the right to be shared in public. We are by no means intending to offend any party, but instead hold the view that free speech and opposing opinions should be encouraged, provided they are presented in a healthy manner. We hope that readers will continue to support TyreQuote.com and the positive changes we are trying to make in the industry. We would like to thank those who have taken the time to read this.

  4. noonan says:

    the company is a pure joke and very laughable . you should be ashamed to work for them. I am in a court battle with them as we speak

  5. Paul Thurbon says:

    I purchased 2 new rear tyres for my Mercedes sprinter from kwik fit Harlow . I drove 5 miles home from kwick fit and 5 miles to Waltham abbey in the morning when I heard a loud bang and my rear tyre a continental was totally deflated. On calling out the RAC we could not find a hole or any damage to the tyre. The RAC driver said that they have to go to kwick fit for new tyres and the same thing had happened to him two weeks earlier. On returning the tyre the staff tried to inflate the continental as the air filled the tyre a large bubble appeared on the inner rim followed by a huge bang as the tyre slipped over the inner rim. The kwick fit manager said oh dear that is not supposed to happen and asked me to fill in some forms which were to accompany my tyre back to the manufacturer. I was told I would get a phone call from their customer care department within a few days. I was then presented with another bill and asked to pay for the new budget tyre they had just fitted to my van, saying that this is the normal proceedure even though i had paid £ 120 for the damaged continental. A week passed by and I decided to return to Harlow to see what was happening. Low and behold my form was still sitting on a pile of forms behind the counter. I was assured that I would hear from their customer services within a couple of days. Four weeks on and still I have had no contact from kwick fit, I am now considering going back to Harlow kwick fit and making so much fuss in their reception area that they will give me my money back just to keep me quiet. How can a company be so successful when they treat their customers with such contempt . I will never use kwick fit again and would never recommend them to anybody. Paul thurbon

  6. Conrad Farlow says:

    In a similar vein….

    My wife had a blow-out on the M1 just North of Sheffield and miraculously did not come to any harm. The tyre was one of 2 front tyres fitted by Kwik Fit in Barnsley some 9 months and 12,000 miles previously. I mention this only to give an indication of the wear you might expect on the tyres.

    I fitted the spare tyre and sent my wife to Kwik Fit Barnsley as it is near to her workplace and is convenient.

    I got a call from her telling me that apparently the spare was damaged, the other front tyre was illegal (bald) and that the rear tyres needed to be replaced. She was a little upset as Christmas is coming and this was an unexpected expense. She said that they had done a report and did she agree to the work? I told her to get the one tyre fitted and to come away and to tell them that I would call them to discuss these other issues.The report was retained (snatched)by the Kwik Fit employee.

    I called them and pointed out that the tyres were indeed legal as I had inspected them myself only the previous day. Quoting a few numbers like 75% and 1.6 mm tread depth did the trick. The chap seemed to take umbrage to the expression ‘taking the piss’ and told me that I should come down and tell him that to his face. I intend to do just that on Saturday, with the car and the aforementioned tyres.

    The spare was the new spare that comes with a new car and had never been used and it was inflated. I checked the pressure myself and she had only travelled 16 miles on it at a top speed of 50 mph as instructed. The chap on the phone kept calling me ‘buddy’. It was not a pleasant phone call despite me starting it with a genuine and polite enquiry. I asked him to justify the report and why it had been retained when my wife mentioned that I would be querying it? The mere mention of the fact that this months sales targets seemed more important than our continuing patronage caused something bordering on apoplexy.

    My wife felt intimidated and uncomfortable with the obvious contempt that the employees exhibited. As she described it ‘They all hate their jobs and hate customers.’

    I will never ever use Kwik Fit again and I will be spreading the word on any site that I can find of this contemptible behaviour.

    Sign of the times?

  7. michael brooks says:

    On Monday 28th January 2013, I had two replacement tyres fitted on my Ford Transit van, one of them was fitted on the spare wheel. The inside of the van is fitted out like a mobile showroom with approx. £18,000 of stock. Imagine my surprise to discover that the spare wheel had been dumped inside! I rang Kwikfit to ask why they had not fitted the spare wheel back on the wheel hub? They said that because it had been raining all day, the workshop floor was soaking wet because of the wet vehicles moving up & down, to refit the spare wheel would have meant lying down on the wet floor, getting wet through & having to work the rest of the day in wet clothing, when I asked if they had work mats or crawlers or waterproof clothing, they replied in the negative & told me to come back on a sunny dry day & they would do it then. So much for Kwikfits customer satisfaction. This happened in the Sandes av.depot in Kendal,Cumbria. If you need a new tyre & it’s raining, I suggest you try elsewhere.

  8. Ian Maul says:

    Over the years I have heard numerous complaints about Kwik Fit and I said then what I will say now, why do people still give them business?

  9. Many thanks for spending free time in order to post “How Kwik Fit risked my life to make
    a sale. Shocking exclusive. – Bristol Editor – Bristol Editor –
    Social media, blogging, media relations, journalism and
    PR in Bristol”. Thank you so much for a second time -Clarence

  10. Rachel says:

    Whats the email address to use for complaints, need to make one as getting nowhere with branch, not even bothered to call me back when nearly died the other day because of negligence!!

  11. Hi Rachel

    Try this:

    http://www.kwik-fit.com/customer-comments.asp

    Good luck and let us all know how you fare.

  12. kal says:

    Was just about to have my rear tyres replaced at kwik Fit thank goodness I read your reviews. Have decided to go elsewhere but concerned that I will have similar experiences; can we trust anywhere?

  13. John says:

    I wouldn’t bother using the customer services e-mail address – I’ve now sent 2 e-mails and had no response since I sent the 1st 10 days ago.

    I had two new rear tyres fitted at a cost of over £250 in readiness for a long tripup country. On my return a few days later I had the car washed and it was only then did I notice yhe damage they had done to one of my alloys when they had fitted the tyres. There are now substantial chips around the holes housing the nuts. The cost of having the alloy refurbished is £50.

    Does anyone have an e-mail address from which I might get a response?

  14. [...] are looking to engage with products and services, having the right presence online is critical. This blog post centred around life-threatening service delivered by Kwik Fit has attracted an average of 100 [...]

  15. G Davies says:

    My daughter took her car in this morning for a pre-booked MOT & Service at 9.15. She was told that it wouldn’t be ready until 4pm – MOT & Service??!! At 3pm she had a phone call to say her car had failed the MOT – 4 tyres & back brake pads. Quoted £420 for a set of cheap tyres, £120 for pads, £40 for Brake fluid. Altogether, the work, including MOT & Service would have cost £755!! She told them not to do it & got the reply that they’d have to keep the car there until it was done, as it was against the law to drive without an MOT. She collected the car, went to another garage & got all the work done for £310!! The guy who phoned her had a major attitude problem too & was determined to try his best to get the work done – he must have thought he was dealing with a silly woman! NEVER go there!!

  16. Ronnie says:

    Hi, I was just looking for an address for Kwik Fit head office as I wanted to make them aware of an incidence of sub standard service and incompetent management that I witnessed today. I was not the customer but I was in reception at the time. I had intended to book an MOT for my car but I left and went next door to Halfords instead. I had no idea that Kwik Fit had a history of bad service until I read your blog and found all the information regarding the Watchdog programme. I shall ensure all my collegues are aware of the dangers of Kwik Fit. Thank you.

  17. Jean says:

    I asked Kwik-Fit today to look at a tyre on my wife’s car that was very slowly losing pressure. Before work started, I made them aware that if the tyre was not repairable, I have another tyre of the same make and similar (good) condition in the boot that I would like them to fit. I was told this would not be a problem. The technician removed the wheel and then, in stead of dunking it in a bath of water, started spraying it with a little bottle of water. After a while he came back and said the wheel was leaking at the inside rim seal and they can’t fix it. I asked him to take it off and fit the tyre I had brought along. At this point I was told that they will not fit a customer’s own tyre. I asked what would happen if they had repaired a puncture – that would also be a second hand wheel belonging to the customer that they will be fitting. They said in that case they will be providing a guarantee of the work done and charged for. I pointed out that I am perfectly happy to pay for a puncture repair, even if there is no one. This proved impossible. Just another example of utter nonsense that this money grabbing company is coming up with. I went down the street to another company (Europit) who not only agreed to fit my tyre if needed, but actually removed the existing tyre, polished up the inside edge of the rim. put a sealant on, balanced the wheel and gave me back the same wheel and tyre with no leaks. No wonder where I shall be going next! All this hiding behind guarantees and what not is just an excuse to rip us off. Incidentally, Kwik-fit will swap your summer/winter tyres if in a set of 4 and all bought with them – how is that not fitting someone’s part worn tyre?? A company that treats its customers like fools deserve every inch of bad publicity they receive.

  18. Andy says:

    Many years ago I took a car to Kwik fit and asked them to replace the master brake cylinder (the bit that pushes the brake fluid to all the brakes). 6 hours later they had replaced the pads, discs, hoses and fluids but not the part I asked them to replace. An hour after that I was on a grass verge with my front bumper in a hedge because the brakes had completely failed. On this occasion they did refund me the labour charges and fitted the part that I had asked for (which had now completely failed) free of charge.
    More recently my wife took her car to have an MoT at Kwik fit. They tried to sell her lots of suspension parts that didn’t need replacing, but gave the car an MoT pass despite it having a really obviously failed wishbone bush and antiroll bar bush.
    Having spoken to kwikfit about the MoT outcome they suggest I complain to vosa but did stress that it would result in my car getting an MoT fail. I say better that than it killing my wife.

  19. Richard_C says:

    Just to say that site like this work. I need an air con recharge and there is a Kwik Fit place not too far for me. They do a fixed price deal which looked OK. I stumbled on this blog and will now be going to a local independent and pay a few £ more. Looks like you can’t trust them.

  20. Leslie Warren says:

    Wow, we live in Bristol and own a a Cooper S, wont be taking it to Kwik-Fit for anything after reading this, thanks for letting us know.

  21. dawn says:

    paid kwik fit merthyr tydfil to change my brakesto have the deal where as you never have to pay for your brakes as long as you own your vehicle….sounds like a great deal…don’t be fooled by it like we are. my car started to have a bumping when I used the brakes so I took it to the nearest garage who I paid to inspect it, they said you need your brakes changed so I booked it into kwik fit merthyr under our deal….they refused to change the brakes saying that it wasnt the brakes it was the discs they said all the discs were warped and it would cost £90 for each disc so £360. I didnt have that money in the bank so I took it else where and had it done for half the price, but there was still the bumping when the brakes were applied so I took it back to kwik fit today who told me again it was warped discs..so I told them no these are brand new discs…so they said it was muck behind the flange and they wouldnt change my brakes as there is still meat on them…. but get this they will change them when they go down a few more ml BUT ONLY if we have new discs or they will change them now if we have new discs…..excuse me please they are brand new discs and a few seconds ago you told me it was the flange but now you insist I still need new discs………..dont bloody think so….we will see what trading standards say

  22. Mike Saunders says:

    A female friend had just had her Audi serviced, and seeing a free brake check offer at KF, Newport Pagnall, took it in. When she went to collect, she found the car with its brakepads out and was told the car should not be driven. It ‘needed’ new pads, discs and her hoses were rusty and needed replacement. I told her to tell them to replace all as found and I would have the car checked elsewhere. This was after they told her it was illegal for her to drive the car away (bullshit!) I took the car to my own garage and asked the head MOT tester to cast an eye. Nothing wrong: pads slightly down. Same story from Audi dealer who’d just serviced it. I could tell more about my own experiences of KF but, suffice it to say, avoid them like a plague of locusts.

  23. Tony says:

    I put my wifes car into our local Kwik Fit for an M.O.T.
    They passed it but issued an advisory saying ” UNDER ENGINE TRAY FITTED ” !!!
    When I queried why they had put this on as an advisory they said it was standard practice to.
    Standard practice ?
    So, does that mean that every 2004 BMW 3 series, or ANY car for that matter, fitted with an as standard, under engine tray that they get presented for an MOT gets an advisory ???

    AVOID these jokers like the plague…

  24. darren says:

    Im now driving a mobility car and unfortunately I have no choice I have to use kwik fit. When I needed 2 new front tyres on my antara unfortunately none of my local branches had them in stock RAC repaired a puncture in emergency and told me they will never have tyres in stock for mobility cars as the staff do not earn commission on the mobility cars. Advice was ask if they have the tyres in stock and do not mention mobility until you have seen the tyres.I went along to the Shoreham branch they did have tyres in stock but decided they did not need changing. After 6 days and 4 visits to them they finally fitted the tyres. Unfortunately they were cheep import wrong weight rating every pothole and speed hump crashed the bumper into the ground as the tyres flexed excessively. kwik fit insisted they were suitable vauxhall dealer and the manufacturer of the tyres said they were not this went on for three weeks. When told that the insurance had been informed of the situation and the car was about to have an AA inspection kwik fit changed the tyres the next day apparently at the request of mobiity as a gesture of goodwill.

  25. Peter says:

    I took my car to a kwikfit in Liverpool for two new tyres and was told I needed new discs and pads on all four corners at a cost of circa £450. I needed to drive about 400 miles the next day and as they would need to keep the car in to do the work I decided to bring it back at a later date.

    After looking at the discs and getting a second opinion I realised they had plenty of life left. Almost 2 years later, this week I took my car into a Honda dealership for an unrelated job; they did a full inspection and told me that the very same discs are perfectly fine and don’t need replacing, after travelling a further 20,000 miles!

    As not to totally slate them, I have used other Kwikfits with no issue and genuine staff so I do feel it is down to the individual garage and the staff they employ.

  26. Darren says:

    We used to have a Nissan Note on motability and Kwik Fit were really poor. We now own a car and won’t take the car anywhere near them.

    We had a few issues with them – the first motability car we had we couldn’t believe how quickly that car kept going through tyres. The first set that were on the car as new lasted 30,000 miles, but then when Kwik Fit changed them they kept losing tread every 5,000 miles which seemed quite excessive.

    On one change they messed up and broke the locking nuts on the alloys. When they give us the car back they explained that they’d managed to find some spare bolts to hold the wheels on (gulp!), and that it was Nissan who were responsible for the locking nuts breaking because they’d put them on too tight and told us take it up with Nissan.

    We took it up with motability because we considered that really as the car was in Kwik Fit at the time the locking nuts broke and they were the ones trying to remove them then regardless of whether Nissan put them on too tight Kwik Fit was ultimately liable for the damage – surely if they were on too tight they should have noticed this and stopped and told us to get Nissan to loosen them.

    We also mentioned it to Nissan who agreed that as the car had been in Kwik Fit’s garage at the time they were liable.

    In the end Motability agreed to accept the car back without the locking nuts being replaced.

    The other thing we noticed about Kwik Fit is that whenever we took the car in for tyres to be changed they always said they hadn’t got any in stock as they used to make up the excuse that the Nissan Note SVE took very special tyres, but then suddenly magically found some lying around. Do these guys not know what tyres they have in stock?

  27. Peter Coville says:

    For a bit of balance I have used Kwik Fit in Acton and Goldhawk Road London for many years for my MOT and tyres. They have always been on the mark regarding legality of tyres/pads and on several occasions have gone above and beyond the call to help me out. The work was of a good standard and never any subsequent problems. Therefore it does seem to be down to the individual branch – which is not good for a national company who you should trust to have a decent QA programme.

    Peter

  28. simone says:

    kwick fit – two wheel bearing kits, two drums, brake fluid, shoes £410.00

    a number of garages since told me i had been over charged, trying to sort this with kwick-fit, they believe the work was needed, and exact, they also said they would do stater motor for about 365 i declined, i know nowt about cars i just took it in for brake pads and believed what they told me, im waiting for operational manager ben collard to get back to me.

  29. Bryan says:

    I went to Kwik Fit on Edge Lane in Liverpool last year for a service (inc. air conditioning recharge and brake fluid change) and to have a nail removed from a tyre. They called during the day to say that the tyre needed replacing, something was wrong with the suspension (which was apparently dangerous but they couldn’t describe it in detail) and that the brake pads and disks needed replacing, which was coming up but still seemed too soon. Not knowing much about cars, I agreed to the work – I’m a mathematician and I leave fixing cars to mechanics. All in all, the work came to almost £900, and since I couldn’t say if the work was necessary or had been done I paid it, after being told that my car was ready and then waiting for 1.5 hours for it to actually be ready.

    Over the next 2 months, my gran was ill and so I drove approx 2000 miles, often with my 1 yr old nephew in the car. I started to hear a strange noise coming from my wheels so I took it to Ford, and subsequently took it back several times over the next month. All in all, the problems were:
    1) The grinding noise was because they had not changed the brake pads which had worn down completely and were by that point, metal on metal.
    2) The brake fluid was 4% water and needed replacing.
    3) When the tyres were put back on they hadn’t been tracked and so parts of the front tyres had no tread left.
    4) The air conditioning was no longer working on the cold setting.

    Needless to say, I have never used Kwik Fit since and advised others not to.

  30. Michaela Moseley says:

    I thought it was only me who had had problems with Kwik Fit and so happy, perhaps the wrong use of word, to find others in the same position. However, I did take Kwik Fit to the Small Claims Court and they settled my claim. Maybe an idea for those in a similar position. Why should a big company take advantage of an individual putting their faith in their company

  31. Chris says:

    Hello All

    I happened to come across this site by accident, however the stories are all too shocking.
    I own an independent garage in Glasgow, what some people would call a back street garage!
    I have on numerous occasions ended up with a job that was in Kwik Fit round the corner from me as they are too expensive or tell lies to the customer.
    I have been shocked (unlike me) to discover some of the lies being told to their customers (both male and female)
    and by some of the mistakes being made.

    Example one. A regular customer of mine passed my number onto a woman who had a four wheel drive Honda, she had some really bad knocking noises from the back especially when reversing and turning. She had taken it to KF 9 months before for MOT and service and paid I believe over £700. However she refused point blank to go back. She had the knocking noise since the service and had been to 3 other garages and none had found a problem with the car.
    I checked it over and looked at the invoice from KF. They had failed the front tyres in the MOT and replaced them both, on closer inspection I realised they had fitted 50 profile tyres (195/50R15) instead of 60 profile tyres. The noise was the rear diff winding up due to a different number of rotations between the front and rear diffs.
    Thankfully she only used the car for local trips because if she had gone a long distance the rear diff would have exploded!

    She is still determined never to go back there and insisted I fit new tyres (the right size) to her car.

    Just one example of what? A mistake? A tyre fitted on purpose as they didn’t have the correct size in stock?
    Whatever its just crazy for a large company to do such a thing.

    Rant over, just remember a ‘back street’ garage could well give you a better service and a better price.

    Why? Because they care.

    Now don’t get me started on Arnold feckin Clark!!

    Good day all

  32. alan says:

    My only experience of kwikfit is a rather silly one.I took my wifes astra in for 2 tyres on rear.in the boot I had a flat tyre off my jaguar which I wanted repaired, which they did.in the waiting room I had a chap call me into the workshop as my wheels were impossible to fit, he was actually trying to fit 20 inch 255 wide wheel to a 16 inch astra.when I asked if thats a wind up, he couldn’t see anything wrong

  33. lee ogden says:

    my car failed its mot on the back brake not working properly.they told they would replace the piping section for £200 and then told me…even that might not fix the problem.i took the car to a independent garage who told me the fluid compensater was broke and put a new one in and the total price for their service?…£10.will never visit kwikfit ever again

  34. phil w says:

    I stopped using them years ago , shocking company , ive been telling everyone I meet to stay clear !!!

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