Jul 28 2009 Chris Russon
Garages clean up their act
THE number of complaints about independent garages is falling, according to latest figures.
Statistics released by the government-funded advice service Consumer Direct show it received 8,047 calls between January-June 2009 about service and repairs carried out by independent garages - a fall of 4.16% over the same period the previous year.
The improvement follows the introduction of the Motor Industry Code of Practice for Service and Repair in August 2008 to safeguard motorists' interests beyond the minimum requirements of consumer law.
More than 5,500 garages are now subscribing to the scheme run by Motor Codes.
'These latest figures indicate that there has been an improvement in the performance of independent garages over the past few months,' said Motor Codes director Chris Mason.
'The more businesses that recognise the benefits to be obtained by subscribing to this code, the better the overall consumer experience will be.'
The code offers motorists an online search facility allowing consumers to locate their nearest subscribing garage at www.motorindustrycodes.co.uk, a free consumer advice line on 0800 692 0825 and free conciliation and low cost, legally binding arbitration.
Garages that subscribe to the Code commit to honest and fair services, open and transparent pricing, completing work as agreed, invoices that match quoted prices, competent and conscientious staff and to offering a straightforward, swift complaint procedure.