Oil purchase receipt not enough in this case.

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I don't do business with shady dealers.

That's really all this is. If reciepts aren't good enough, then neither would be invoices. They'd call them fabricated or tell your friend that the damage was caused by the other shop.
 
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Easy. The defense argument would be the oil was used for a different vehicle. Or was returned. Or sold. Or still sitting in his garage. I buy lots of things I don't ultimately use...
Doesn't matter, at least not in a criminal case. They'd have to prove he did NOT use it. What would be great is if this car uses, let's say, 5W-30 and he has receipts for that as well as an oil filter that fits that car. He also has receipts for 0W-20 and an oil filter that fits his other car (but not the car in question). His attorney will lay that out to a jury (or judge). Circumstantial, sure, but convincing enough for most people.
 
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Easy. The defense argument would be the oil was used for a different vehicle. Or was returned. Or sold. Or still sitting in his garage. I buy lots of things I don't ultimately use...


Have you priced attorney's and lawsuits?

He could easily spend $10,000 hiring a lawyer, end up spending another $500+ in filing and court costs. Another few thousand to hire an expert witness on his side, to testify about oils. And then maybe lose. Maybe even have to pay the other side's legal fees.

How much is a new or rebuilt engine?
He could but I doubt it. The nasty gram of a letter should fix it. The automaker risks going to court and having to pay court costs for the OP's friend along with being required to fix the problem free of charge.. This should be a slam dunk of a case.

BTW with M&M cases the manufacturer pays court costs.
 
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My Miata dashboard has a mileage and a service countdown in days. I take a picture of it along with the fluids used.
 
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...
He could easily spend $10,000 hiring a lawyer, end up spending another $500+ in filing and court costs. Another few thousand to hire an expert witness on his side, to testify about oils. And then maybe lose. Maybe even have to pay the other side's legal fees.
...
I generally agree that suing is the last resort, even when you win, you often lose due to the expenses. But if you show the dealership that you have evidence to support your case and that you are willing to pursue it in the media, and in court, they'll often do the right thing if only to avoid the hassle and expense. Especially if your case comes with bad publicity. Like @wemay says.
 
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I’m curious as to why the dealership said the oil was in bad condition. What is their basis for making this claim? A UOA done by your friend is imperative. And have him document and make a thorough paper trail when he gets the UOA.
 
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My understanding is legally you need a log and receipts for the correct parts to back it up.
It's going to largely depend on the precise language in the warranty coverage.

lawyer up.
Maybe, maybe not. Lawyer's aren't free. They don't tend to work on IOUs either.

Most will charge $$$ for a in-depth consultation to review the warranty contract and evidence, and listen to his position. He might get a free 15-60 minute consult somewhere. But for a real deep dive and advice, it's going to cost him more than he saved on all his "at home" oil changes. It might be worth paying a lawyer to write a strongly worded threatening letter but with unlikely positive outcome.

At $300, 20-30 hours of lawyer time for an uncertain outcome would likely pay for a typical passenger engine and installation.
 
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An attorney will consult with him for free to see if he has a case worth representing. If not, small claims will be his next step. What was the quoted dollar amount from the dealership?
 
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I had a similar situation from BMW accusing me of a Money Shift, because my valves impacted the pistons. They would not believe me and said the engine will not be covered. I made a stink and called BMW USA and made a complaint. A few days later they called and said the engine was covered by warranty and offered me a loner.

Become a very concerned consumer and complain at the top. They can't say the oil was in bad condition, they didn't test it. He can also say that leading up to the failure it was contaminated the oil making it appear "bad" ie, dark oil. Carbon could have made the oil black..

Whatever was failing obviously contaminated the oil, all he has to tell corporate. Make a stink about them being rude and accusing him in front of customers, etc.

Was he allowed to see the oil in a pan and verify its condition?
 
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I generally agree that suing is the last resort, even when you win, you often lose due to the expenses. But if you show the dealership that you have evidence to support your case and that you are willing to pursue it in the media, and in court, they'll often do the right thing if only to avoid the hassle and expense. Especially if your case comes with bad publicity. Like @wemay says.

I've unfortunately been in a similar situation a few times, and it's always extremely fact specific. Multibillion dollar businesses with an army of lawyers on staff don't get scared easily by threats of litigation. They get paid to crush the little guys. I've prevailed when the language was in my favor, and ate the loss when the language was in the business' favor. But the key is to know when to hold 'em and when to fold 'em.

If the warranty language is vague or in his favor, he might prevail with some of those tactics. He has a stronger argument if he has only 1 car that takes this oil and filter and any other evidence of him changing it. He has a weaker case if the warranty language requires that he log it into their dealership website or any other steps he failed to do; particularly if he has multiple cars that take the same oil.
 
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What did they say failed in the engine?? Sounds like maybe a piston took a crap? Did they pull apart the engine and show him that the dirty oil was capable of doing the specific damage that occured?
 
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The warrant fine print is going to be the ultimate determination. Vague wording should be in his favor. However I sorta side with the dealer. Receipts prove little. They only actually prove oil was purchased. For who, which car, and was it used timely, correctly, etc. are all important unknowns.
You could say the same for dealer receipts or work orders. How do you know they actually changed the oil or just charged you for it?
 
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Consulting wit an attorney would be a wise idea. If they don't do an oil analysis they have no standing. If they also just dumped his oil, they have nothing.
That would be the deciding issue here-the oil "looked bad"?? Did the dealership have it tested by an INDEPENDENT oil testing company? No? Then they dumped it? They have very little chance of beating the OP's friend on this one, it won't even make it to trial!
 
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Consulting wit an attorney would be a wise idea. If they don't do an oil analysis they have no standing. If they also just dumped his oil, they have nothing.
That was my thinking as well. You would think if they suspected something was oil related they would have saved the entire contents of the drained oil into a sealed container to cover their own butt as well. I don't know what kind of oil was used, but some brands have a warranty against engine damage, but who knows how easy that is either?
 
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Ford would be my guess. They are notorious for doing this sort of thing. I have been through this with them several times.
Question, what brand and type of oil was he purchasing/using?
Ford's specs are pretty notoriously vague, unless we're talking diesel here. Ford is a joke, though, we had to eat a Transit 3.7 because the stealer didn't document the "free" Ford Premium Care oil change prior to the thrown rod. Used junkyard engine, plus labor, etc., was in the $7500 range, IIRC. (NOT my van!)
 
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This is so vague as to be almost unbelievable. A dealership denies warranty because of "the condition the oil was in"?

Plus the cloak-and-dagger mystery that shrouds the rest of the story.
 
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Not Hyundai, not Kia... I have firsthand experience with another manufacturer with troublesome direct injection motors that will try to get out of any warranty repairs, even if you have the letter from the manufacturer admitting the problem and that you may be eligible. That is astounding that they won't accept oil receipts, but I know of a GM dealer who will play that card.
 
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Consulting wit an attorney would be a wise idea. If they don't do an oil analysis they have no standing. If they also just dumped his oil, they have nothing.
Maybe, maybe not. First I'd suspect their normal operating course of action when an engine is destroyed - probably in their playbook - is to save oil samples and test some oil. I'd be surprised if they didn't. Probably also lots of pictures of the damage, sludged or miscolored oil, etc. My shop takes a myriad of pictures for proof, consults, etc. with customers. So let's say the engine was badly slugged up or water contaminated, etc. Boom, pictures of milky or sludged oils is going to be powerful evidence of neglect.

But even if they didn't, hypothetically they'll march Joe mechanic in to say he has been a professional mechanic for 22 years and he observed the oil. It was the worse neglected tar sludge milky oil he'd ever seen in his life. And that was evidence of neglect, no way the owner changed the oil, and that directly ruined the engine. ETC...
 
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