Faulty clutch: Can I claim for expenses?

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Active Member
Oct 3, 2008
Ferndown, Dorset
'95 Mitsubishi FTO GPX, '92 Honda Accord Aerodeck, '78 Mercedes 350SL
Hoping you guys can help me out here. :)

I recently bought a clutch from a seller on eBay. Seller had good feedback, it was a branded clutch (Exedy). I had the seller confirm it was the correct clutch for the car before buying. It arrived, took it to my mechanic to fit. He fitted it. Told me it was the wrong one and didn't work when it was fitted. Took it out, put it side by side with the old clutch, said it was smaller than the original and figured it was probably a mis-packed box.

I arranged a return through eBay and it's on its way back to him now. As this has cost me a significant amount of labour, I would like to claim some of it back from the seller. I've messaged him through eBay asking him to contribute £300 towards the labour incurred, will see if he replies. If he doesn't or won't pay up, do I have any legal options?
I suspect you have no real probability of getting any return here. Best bet is to open an eBay dispute "item not as described" that will only get you a replacement or money back.

No different to buying from a shop.

Sent from my iPhone using MBClub UK
Oh, he's taking it back on eBay - I opened a return against the item and it's on its way back to him, by courier, paid for by him. I do appreciate that things go wrong sometimes, but I also expect people to rectify the situation when they do go wrong.
I'd say there's a small chance of that

Why didn't the mechanic marry them up before fitting the new one?

The notion of checking them side by side AFTER fitting seems a bit of a chocolate teapot thought
If the mechanic has fitted a new one, having just taken off the old one and not realised they're not the same, I'd be after my money back from the mechanic.
@ash59fifty-uk , @i-CONICA - good points both. I hadn't considered that. I think I will need to have a conversation with him.
Antharro said:
@ash59fifty-uk , @i-CONICA - good points both. I hadn't considered that. I think I will need to have a conversation with him.

Fault here is definitely on the mechanic

If I ask for a quarter pounder at McDonald's and receive a regular crown on my burger, the faults with the kitchen crew not the bun company
When you buy an item the liability for any potential loss it generally limited to the cost of the item itself. i.e the initial cost of the item in total including delivery.

What you're asking for is a contribution towards consequential loss. This is where things start to get sketchy.

You've bought a part from eBay, there are two duties of care taking place here:-

Duty of care 1 - The seller has described the goods correctly and the goods supplied are as described.

Duty of Care 2 - The buyer has read the listing in full and has understood the item being bought is the correct item for their use.

If duty of care 1 hasn't been complied with you have the right to return the goods for a full refund.

If duty of care 2 hasn't been complied with you have the the right to return the goods for a full refund as long as they are in a condition that will allow the seller to offer the product for sale again in the original condition as supplied.

So in short, unless you can demonstrate you have suffered material loss* you're unlikely to be able to claim for anything other than the original cost of the part.

*If you choose to employ a third party to fit the part you bought, this is not responsibility of the seller of the original part.
Even if he assumed it was right, and didn't compare before fitting the new one, the wear marks on the flywheel should have given it away.
If the mechanic has fitted a new one, having just taken off the old one and not realised they're not the same, I'd be after my money back from the mechanic.
Not necessarily. It depends what the difference is. Sometimes its not immediately obvious unless the two units are closely examined side by side, and even then it's sometimes necessary to measure component features before small differences become clear. And the mechanic is unlikely to do anything other than take a cursory look at the components for signs of obvious damage if they have been supplied boxed and marked up as being the correct ones.

As an aside, this is a good example of why getting the mechanic to both supply and fit is helpful: If something goes wrong, the mechanic bears all risk - which, incidentally, is why they may charge slightly more than the aggregate cost of a labour only job with the customer supplying the part(s).
but as i said, when you offer up the friction plate to the flywheel, you'd see the shiny bit extends out beyond the edge of your new plate, making it immediately obvious it's smaller than the one you just took off.
In no way is the mechanic at fault, there is no way he will know it's the wrong part until the old one is removed so there for labour charge will still stand.
You supplied the part so I'm afraid he was only doing as instructed by yourself
It's the chance you take when you supply parts.

Fault lies with the supplier, doubt your get any money from him though
So is the car still in bits? or has the mechanic put the old unit back in?

I'm so glad we don't Sell items on ebay as it can simply be a nightmare for very little profit, Paypal can now refund items upto 180 days after the sale too if the buyer makes a claim.
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If a joiner hammered your square peg into your round hole, wouldn't you argue he should have stopped before, and informed you that your square peg is wrong?

Obviously labour is still owed. I had the same happen to me, and my mechanic called me, told me it's wrong and said he can get the right one from ECP in a couple of hours. We did that, and I got my unused clutch friction plate back.

Labour was the same as it would have been, with a couple hour break in the middle.

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