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Van hire damage advice

I moved house a couple of weeks ago and hired a van from SIXT for the weekend. Stupidly I didn't have time to get the zero excess insurance sorted out beforehand and they were trying to flog it to me for a rip off £25 quid a day so I didn't bother. Of course I then managed to scrape it in a petrol station the next day.

They are now trying to sting me for the full 500 quid excess for the scrape and have sent me through a quote showing how much the repair is going to cost. I've attached a pic of the scrape. The wheel arch bit is nothing to do with me that was already done, it's the bit along and below the black metal panel.

Anyone got any ideas if this is a realistic cost for getting this repaired, and if I have any grounds to challenge the figure they're trying to charge me?



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Comments

  • I think @DA9 might have worked in this area if I recall some of his posts correctly
  • Their quote is probably about right. Looks a decent gouge & probably will need a new panel - don't think it can be repaired.
  • I've had a number of small dinks sorted out under insurance. No quote however small the damage has ever been less than £600. The fact is they won't even get it repaired, they will just take your money and would use Chipsaway for £50 if they did want a repair.
  • Their quote is probably about right. Looks a decent gouge & probably will need a new panel - don't think it can be repaired.

    unfortunately agree with this
  • It's about right, the excess is the excess, added to that, it will cost them to have the van off the road to do the repair, i.e. Not earning rental money. They won't repair every individual scrape or dent as they happen, it will go in for the whole works as and when it becomes prudent and cost affective, which is why you will see so many rental vans with dents and scrapes as they are generally driven by people not used to their size and height etc.
    Sorry
  • Feared that might be the case. Particularly aggrieved as they gave me a way bigger van than I even wanted because they were out of stock of the normal size ones, and then the scrape happened on a petrol station panel which was broken and sticking off the side of the building.

    A huge extra cost just after moving house I could have done without.

    cheers all
  • DA9 said:

    It's about right, the excess is the excess, added to that, it will cost them to have the van off the road to do the repair, i.e. Not earning rental money. They won't repair every individual scrape or dent as they happen, it will go in for the whole works as and when it becomes prudent and cost affective, which is why you will see so many rental vans with dents and scrapes as they are generally driven by people not used to their size and height etc.
    Sorry

    I've had a number of small dinks sorted out under insurance. No quote however small the damage has ever been less than £600. The fact is they won't even get it repaired, they will just take your money and would use Chipsaway for £50 if they did want a repair.

    agreed with this, the annoying thing is that side of the van had already been decimated on the lower half by somebody else who'd crashed it, the lower bumper had been ripped off etc etc, so the damage i did is of no consequence really cost it all needed sorting on the side anyway
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  • Not trying to be wise after the event. But you can get excess insurance for about £40 a year. I hire about 3/4 tiles a year. Hire companies are loading excess prices up and some companies are not covering glass/tyres anymore. As others have said, this is one you will have to take on the chin.
  • I know about that, I normally buy the one off zero excess cover for about £4-5 a day when I hire something (don't hire often enough to bother with the year long one) but I just never got round to it this time, for the first time, and this time I Managed to prang it, for the first time!
  • I know about that, I normally buy the one off zero excess cover for about £4-5 a day when I hire something (don't hire often enough to bother with the year long one) but I just never got round to it this time, for the first time, and this time I Managed to prang it, for the first time!

    Sorry to hear that always the way.
  • Eurocar's offices raided today regarding over charging insurance for claims
  • I'm not a lawyer or expert so don't take this as gospel but if the van was already damaged in that area of the vehicle's bodywork and the repair will be to replace the whole panel then has the rental co already taken a payment off another person for the insurance excess ? Taking what would presumably be only one deduction by the insurance company of the excess off two people sounds suspiciously like fraud to me, but then, what do I know ?
  • Agreed. That was my thought. But I don't know who to or how to make a fuss about that.
  • Agreed. That was my thought. But I don't know who to or how to make a fuss about that.

    Asking the question about the previous damage and whether it's the whole panel that's going to be replaced isn't making a fuss. write/email and ask them to confirm that it's the company's policy to demand the excess payment from all customers in these cases and have they already taken the excesss off the customers for the other damage to that same panel.
  • Agreed. That was my thought. But I don't know who to or how to make a fuss about that.

    Asking the question about the previous damage and whether it's the whole panel that's going to be replaced isn't making a fuss. write/email and ask them to confirm that it's the company's policy to demand the excess payment from all customers in these cases and have they already taken the excesss off the customers for the other damage to that same panel.
    This.

    Or, I assume you paid by credit card? With the excess charge you've paid over £100, so under Section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act 1974, the credit card company is jointly and severally liable for any breach of contract or misrepresentation by the retailer or trader. There are plenty of template letters available on the web. (But mention the double charge for damage on the same panel and the Europcar revelations). Let the credit card company sort it out with the rental company. They have more muscles than you do and hopefully Sixt will opt for a quite life rather than a visit from the SFO.
  • All very good advice guys - truly in awe of the combined wealth of knowledge on this forum.
  • Amazing cheers all, good advice. Have sent some letters. Will let you know how I get on.
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  • Back on this.... I wrote some letters challenging the charge directly to SIXT and then also via my credit card company in June 2017 (After the matter in May 2017). I heard nothing since and my credit card company cancelled / refunded the payment.

    Completely out of the blue, I have received a call this morning 16 months on from SIXT, followed by an e-mail with an invoice for the amount attached again. I have literally heard nothing from them in the intervening period and never got any response to my written challenge.

    The guy on the phone was an arrogant little tosser who just kept spouting that they have up to 6 years to chase me for the money and if I don't pay they'll take me to court. He might be right but it seems incredibly unreasonable that they can just ignore my written correspondence for such a long period, not respond to my challenge and call me out of the blue threatening court action.

    Anyone got any knowledge / advice on this kind of thing?!
  • I'm not a lawyer or expert so don't take this as gospel but if the van was already damaged in that area of the vehicle's bodywork and the repair will be to replace the whole panel then has the rental co already taken a payment off another person for the insurance excess ? Taking what would presumably be only one deduction by the insurance company of the excess off two people sounds suspiciously like fraud to me, but then, what do I know ?

    But there will have been a walkround inspection of the van and previous damaged marked on the check sheet you get when you hire, surely?
  • Back on this.... I wrote some letters challenging the charge directly to SIXT and then also via my credit card company in June 2017 (After the matter in May 2017). I heard nothing since and my credit card company cancelled / refunded the payment.

    Completely out of the blue, I have received a call this morning 16 months on from SIXT, followed by an e-mail with an invoice for the amount attached again. I have literally heard nothing from them in the intervening period and never got any response to my written challenge.

    The guy on the phone was an arrogant little tosser who just kept spouting that they have up to 6 years to chase me for the money and if I don't pay they'll take me to court. He might be right but it seems incredibly unreasonable that they can just ignore my written correspondence for such a long period, not respond to my challenge and call me out of the blue threatening court action.

    Anyone got any knowledge / advice on this kind of thing?!

    Citizens Advice Bureau.
  • Back on this.... I wrote some letters challenging the charge directly to SIXT and then also via my credit card company in June 2017 (After the matter in May 2017). I heard nothing since and my credit card company cancelled / refunded the payment.

    Completely out of the blue, I have received a call this morning 16 months on from SIXT, followed by an e-mail with an invoice for the amount attached again. I have literally heard nothing from them in the intervening period and never got any response to my written challenge.

    The guy on the phone was an arrogant little tosser who just kept spouting that they have up to 6 years to chase me for the money and if I don't pay they'll take me to court. He might be right but it seems incredibly unreasonable that they can just ignore my written correspondence for such a long period, not respond to my challenge and call me out of the blue threatening court action.

    Anyone got any knowledge / advice on this kind of thing?!

    Citizens Advice Bureau.
    Yeh cheers, spoke to them this afternoon. Reckon i’m Probably bang to rights but they said I had good reason to challenge this through vehicle leasing association as well so worth a go.
  • I know this is probably too late... But i have hired cars cars for private and business reasons for years with Europecar - i know crap name. But lately i have observed they are filming the car before hire. I have started to do the same behind them so you are filming them filming, so any issues are highlighted by both before hire.
  • Film them filing you filming them - in the past. Sort of like Back to the Future but less Oedipussy.
  • edited September 26
    I have hired a few cars over the years and one thing that annoys me is when the hire company try to rush the initial inspection. On a few occasions I have insisted they add minor damage I found to their checklist when they suggested it wasn't important. It is extremely difficult arguing with these companies later so it is important to get this right early IMO.
  • It was like that when you hired it.
  • Recently hired a car from Enterprise, took out excess insurance cover but Enterprise made a point of saying they have a more relaxed view on damage and they don't worry about small scratches and dinks and ignore alloy wheel damage.
  • Recently hired a car from Enterprise, took out excess insurance cover but Enterprise made a point of saying they have a more relaxed view on damage and they don't worry about small scratches and dinks and ignore alloy wheel damage.

    They would say that though, wouldn't they.
    And then POW! You're stuck with a costly charge.
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