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Caesar

Failed Hella Condenser ~ recommend a replacement.

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Fitted a Hella condenser a year and 2 weeks ago. It's failed and guess what? Neither Euro Car Parts nor Hella want to know because its 2 weeks out of warranty! 

ECP customer services manager didn't have time to discuss it with me and Hella said my contract is with ECP. 

Oh, and Hella customer services manager reassured me they don't normally have condenser failures according to his database! 

I paid a bit more for an original supplier item, which was a poor investment. 

Any recommendations for condenser no. 3? 

 

Edited by Caesar
Typo

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I thought Hella was the original supplier but I could be wrong. There are quite a number of makes out there but dlno idea how to judge the quality. 

Thanks for the tip; protected it with mesh when I last replaced it. 

 

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It is 7 years old but only 49k miles. You'd expect a condenser to last a reasonable time. Never had this issue with the E 61 or È 48....

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16 minutes ago, Caesar said:

It is 7 years old but only 49k miles. You'd expect a condenser to last a reasonable time. Never had this issue with the E 61 or È 48....

 

That's because the f10 has a *lot* of cost cutting perhaps due to the economic crash of 2008. 

 

You say you protected it with mesh. Is it definitely stone damage killing these?  Was your mesh damaged ?  Or flexing of the housing leading to a fracture? 

 

 

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No sign of stone damage according to the garage who checked it out for me. Mesh intact. 

You'd think the units would have been beefed up by now. 

Just need to find a decent replacement and give ECP a wide berth if their customer service is so poor. 

 

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13 hours ago, bmwmike said:

I'd be fixing the root cause and sticking OE back in. As I understand it BMW cost cutting stuck the condenser where it is vulnerable to stone damage. Mesh in front of it? 

 

I’m not sure where else the condenser could be situated in the car. All cars I’ve had with aircon, the condenser has been in front of the radiator. Mine also failed but it wasn’t due to stone damage, the leak started in the bottom right corner where the matrix attached to the side tank although it was well pitted from bugs and stones hitting the cooling vanes between the horizontal fine tubes. It was/is the quality of the part rather than its position in the engine bay. 

Edited by Matthew Ashton

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Mine is bottom left hand corner. Looking at Nissens, a Danish manufacturer which seems to have a reputation for quality. 

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4 minutes ago, Matthew Ashton said:

 

I’m not sure where else the condenser could be situated in the car. All cars I’ve had with aircon, the condenser has been in front of the radiator. Mine also failed but it wasn’t due to stone damage, the leak started in the bottom right corner where the matrix attached to the side tank although it was well pitted from bugs and stones hitting the cooling vanes between the horizontal fine tubes. It was/is the quality of the part rather than its position in the engine bay. 

 

Interesting

 

Bottom corner left or right by the sounds of it is the main failure pattern. Could it be moving about too much in its mount ? Alu parts tend not to like too much flexing etc. Mine is still going strong (my aircon is too cold most of the time - mercy).

 

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Is it worth asking a radiator repair shop to have a look and try and repair first? Cant be more than a couple of joints and they might make it a lot more robust long term. 

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1 hour ago, SuperDave said:

Is it worth asking a radiator repair shop to have a look and try and repair first? Cant be more than a couple of joints and they might make it a lot more robust long term. 

 

I asked a repair shop the same question earlier this week for my E60. They told me a repair wasn't possible but they could supply a new one for £95 + VAT. I've taken a chance on a £75 eBay item instead but would still be interested to hear if other repair shops give the same answer.

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I reckon it's worth getting a couple of bust ones an seeing what actually happens.  Presumably a crack? Or a hole? Is it in the same or similar place each time?  

 

Does the g30 have the same issue and if not (yet?) is the part beefier... retrofit.

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Persisting with my complaint with ECP by posting on their Facebook site. That prompted a standard e mail so we'll see, but not impressed by their customer service so far.

When I called them, their solution was to offer me a replacement at a huge discount which reduced the cost to.... the price quoted on their website. They must think we're mugs! 

 

Hella's customer service surprisingly meh too. 

Good news is that it wasn't too warm today so the window operated aircon was very effective! 

 

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14 hours ago, Caesar said:

Mine is bottom left hand corner. Looking at Nissens, a Danish manufacturer which seems to have a reputation for quality. 

I got told the gearbox heat exchanger they sold was made in denmark and it turned out to be a cheap chinese piece of shit that failed in 2 hours

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When my condenser was replaced the dealer initially stated it was stone damage the standard get out clause!, but when I showed them a print out from other owners vehicles suffering the same problem, they had to admit the aluminium casting was found to be porous due to a manufacturing defect.

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26 minutes ago, Oilburner said:

When my condenser was replaced the dealer initially stated it was stone damage the standard get out clause!, but when I showed them a print out from other owners vehicles suffering the same problem, they had to admit the aluminium casting was found to be porous due to a manufacturing defect.

 

In which case I believe there are consumer rights for up to six years for faults which were present at the time of manufacture.

 

For example I had an HP laptop which had a underpowered cooling fan on the GPU. Whilst watching a movie with it linked up to the TV the GPU desoldered itself from the board. The retailer gave me a prorated refund even though the laptop was four years old at the time because the fault was known to be present.

 

No idea which consumer law but doesn't that apply here ? 

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I don't think it's too specific in terms of what's covered but may be worth small claims court. Company unlikely to attend and will settle. 

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I'd say you should argue under the Consumer Rights Act 2015 (as you bought it after it replaced the Sales of Goods Act) that it hasnt lasted a reasonable amount of time given its meant to be oem quality which on a new car would mean it would be repaired or replaced for three years. Ask for a pro-rata refund of about 2/3rds of your purchase price as its lasted just over a year. 

 

Have a crack with this letter generator and amend as required. 

https://www.which.co.uk/tools/faulty-goods-complaint-tool/

Edited by SuperDave

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