Caravan service

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Nov 11, 2009
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Tip: most Fire Angel fire alarms in caravans are the cheap end that respond to smoke and rising heat - hence why they alert when you burn the toast. I changed mine to the FA variety that doesn't respond to smoke. The advantage is that the back plate is the same so you just remove one (rotate anti-clockwise) and replace it with the other.
Can’t say my smoke alarm has a problem with toast or anything being grilled. We done toast each day this week and haven’t had any roof vents opened. Perhaps the setting on the toaster could be the problem. And yes it is working as I test it before each trip out.
 
Jul 18, 2017
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Just checked and CO2 is carbon dioxide that we all breathe out every day. CO is carbon monoxide and is deadly. We do not have a CO2 detector in the caravan so unsure how they managed to test and then charge £3?
Unsure how you would do a servcie without the other components charged for by the dealer?
Althoiugh I knwo wen have bene ripped off, now beginning to feel that we were really royally ripped off!
 
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May 7, 2012
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The quote should be shown as £250 plus parts and consumables if they wish to charge for it. Strictly speaking you would probably be within your rights to say no to the charges but you need to get your caravan back and so had little choice but to pay. I do wonder what they charged for oil and grease as the amount used must be minimal. Not a good way to keep customers and I would not be going back with that sort of attitude.
We had ours serviced for £240, which included the one shot bolts but were warned that if any other parts were needed they would have to charge for them. That is fair, and going beyond what is needed so we were happy.
 
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Nov 6, 2005
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Tip: most Fire Angel fire alarms in caravans are the cheap end that respond to smoke and rising heat - hence why they alert when you burn the toast. I changed mine to the FA variety that doesn't respond to smoke. The advantage is that the back plate is the same so you just remove one (rotate anti-clockwise) and replace it with the other.
Smoke is an early sign of fire - choosing a detector that doesn't respond to smoke seems perverse - can you explain your logic?
 
Jul 18, 2017
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We had ours serviced for £240, which included the one shot bolts but were warned that if any other parts were needed they would have to charge for them. That is fair, and going beyond what is needed so we were happy.
I agree that if parts are required that are not normally used in a service the it is only fair that you pay after they have notified you and you have agreed to the repair.
They did the 2 warranty repairs to our satisfaction as one of the warranty repairs was supposed to have been done at the last servicein 2019 as it was the cracked rear skylight surround issue, but they "forgot" andn it was only during a heavy rainstorm in Aug 2020 that I noticed the issue.
 
Jun 20, 2005
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Smoke is an early sign of fire - choosing a detector that doesn't respond to smoke seems perverse - can you explain your logic?
I thought the FA type, First Alert were a combined smoke and CO detector. The smoke part working via an optical sensor ? Not sure I follow you Woodentop?
 
Mar 14, 2005
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Just checked and CO2 is carbon dioxide that we all breathe out every day. CO is carbon monoxide and is deadly. We do not have a CO2 detector in the caravan so unsure how they managed to test and then charge £3?
Unsure how you would do a servcie without the other components charged for by the dealer?
Althoiugh I knwo wen have bene ripped off, now beginning to feel that we were really royally ripped off!
That is precisely the point I was making And I than Roger L for responding accordingly earlier.. Caravan's should be fitted with a smoke detector and a CO (Carbon Monoxide) detectors.

Some alarms combine both Smoke and CO in one handy unit, but it depends on the model.

But back to reason for the topic, If the adverts or enticements to use a company for a for service and they do not state parts and consumables included in the price, then you should not assume they are included.
 
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Jul 18, 2017
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That is precisely the point I was making And I than Roger L for responding accordingly earlier.. Caravan's should be fitted with a smoke detector and a CO (Carbon Monoxide) detectors.

Some alarms combine both Smoke and CO in one handy unit, but it depends on the model.

But back to reason for the topic, If the adverts or enticements to use a company for a for service and they do not state parts and consumables included in the price, then you should not assume they are included.
Thank you however previous services at the same dealer for the same caravan the extras were all inclusive in the £250, but take your point however as all previous servies were inclusive I ha dno reason to query the charge, so had no reason to think they were exclusive. A precedent had bene set by the tow previous services.
Also on the large notice inside the reception area there is no mention of extras like oil, grease and brake cleaner being excluded or even the 32mm ALK flange.
Is there anyway that they could do a service without using any of those components? Any reasonable person would assume that they are all inclusive of the service regime.

Just to complicate matters, the service for Oct 2020 was booked in March and then again confirmed in July. Both the staff member and service manager that dealt with the booking and service cost have since left the dealership.
 
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Nov 6, 2005
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Either a service cost is fixed price fully inclusive or it's time plus materials - any dealer, car or caravan, that tries to charge extra on a fixed price service needs challenging.
 
Mar 14, 2005
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Hello Buckman.

A lot has happened this year, and businesses are struggling to survive, and sadly that means in reality fewer customers and that generally mean's less income. To offset the losses most business will be increasing prices or finding ways to maximise income along with other cost reduction processes which might well include job losses.

We may see some businesses offering what seems to be better deals as we exit C19 restrictions, principally to stimulate business, but soon those prices will rise, and most likely to a level somewhere above the pre C19 levels.

Count yourself lucky that service consumable have apparently been included in your previous contracts. It does not mean things can't change, and teh Covid situation is a significant factor. It may well be significant that service personnel have been lost, perhaps the business owner's reviewed their servicing budgets and realise that offering inclusive consumables was a cost too far.

It is a customers responsibility to ensure the product or service being offered does in fact meet with your needs and or expectations. You need to verify the T&C's before agreeing to a contract.

The fact the notices in the business do not state whether consumables are included or not would automatically lead me to assume they are not included.

Covid is not an excuse for shoddy workmanship, that is separate matter and you should take that up with your supplier using their complaints procedures.
 
Jun 20, 2005
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Hello Buckman.

A lot has happened this year, and businesses are struggling to survive, and sadly that means in reality fewer customers and that generally mean's less income. To offset the losses most business will be increasing prices or finding ways to maximise income along with other cost reduction processes which might well include job losses.

We may see some businesses offering what seems to be better deals as we exit C19 restrictions, principally to stimulate business, but soon those prices will rise, and most likely to a level somewhere above the pre C19 levels.

Count yourself lucky that service consumable have apparently been included in your previous contracts. It does not mean things can't change, and teh Covid situation is a significant factor. It may well be significant that service personnel have been lost, perhaps the business owner's reviewed their servicing budgets and realise that offering inclusive consumables was a cost too far.

It is a customers responsibility to ensure the product or service being offered does in fact meet with your needs and or expectations. You need to verify the T&C's before agreeing to a contract.

The fact the notices in the business do not state whether consumables are included or not would automatically lead me to assume they are not included.

Covid is not an excuse for shoddy workmanship, that is separate matter and you should take that up with your supplier using their complaints procedures.
It’s bizarre but the caravan industry has had an absolute boom time this year thanks to Covid. So no excuse for crying on my shoulder and blaming Covid for inflated prices😁
 
Nov 11, 2009
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Just checked and CO2 is carbon dioxide that we all breathe out every day. CO is carbon monoxide and is deadly. We do not have a CO2 detector in the caravan so unsure how they managed to test and then charge £3?
Unsure how you would do a servcie without the other components charged for by the dealer?
Althoiugh I knwo wen have bene ripped off, now beginning to feel that we were really royally ripped off!
Could it be as simple as a typographical error on the paperwork. Not everyone knows the difference between CO and CO2 and someone may not realise that the smoke detector detects smoke not CO2. I’m sure not everyone is trying to rip you off.
 
Jul 18, 2017
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Could it be as simple as a typographical error on the paperwork. Not everyone knows the difference between CO and CO2 and someone may not realise that the smoke detector detects smoke not CO2. I’m sure not everyone is trying to rip you off.
I would normally agree but now have the impression that they were looking for things that could increase the bill hence using the incorrect term. Not sure why they using gas report for tenancy agreements and quoting regulations applicable to households and not caravans?
 
Nov 11, 2009
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I would normally agree but now have the impression that they were looking for things that could increase the bill hence using the incorrect term. Not sure why they using gas report for tenancy agreements and quoting regulations applicable to households and not caravans?
Your last three lines have lost me now. Are you saying they were quoting the need for a Gas Safe Certificate?
 
Jul 18, 2017
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Your last three lines have lost me now. Are you saying they were quoting the need for a Gas Safe Certificate?
Nope I am saying that a domestic gas report quoting regulations and marking on it that they had tested the alarms but not the actual gas supply.
 
Jan 3, 2012
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We always drop ours off at 8.30 at our caravan dealer for service everything was included (one shots nuts ) . Also did a damp check with it been 12 years old .
Like Dusty when i pick up caravan he say are you watching I check all wheel bolts with his Torque wrench .
He use grease oil brake cleaner they were factored into the overall cost not separate .
 

Damian

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Mar 14, 2005
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I have been following this topic and must say that it has been , shall we say, "enlightening"!!!

First of all I will only add my perspective as a caravan engineer doing a full service on a van.

The price I quote is inclusive of all the necessary items to actually do the service, so oils, cleaners, hub nuts.

There may be additional items if certain items are required such as a pigtail or gas hose as these are not always needed at every service, and things like regulators etc which are not normal wear and tear items, but the customer would be spoken to and advised of any of these and their authorisation given to carry out the work.

As far as the items within the caravan, if something is present then it needs checking and that includes the smoke alarm and Carbon Monoxide alarm(if fitted) and as a matter of safety I would ask the customers permission to change the batteries, which need doing at a minimum of annually.

To take one thing mentioned in an earlier post about change of tenancy regulations 1975,that is a load of rubbish and most certainly does not apply to a touring caravan, and to charge any money to test a non existent Carbon Dioxide alarm is fraud.

As far as smoke detectors go there are two types, Ionisation and Optical, both detect smoke and heat with the Optical type not being as sensitive to certain conditions, so better suited to a caravan as they tend not to give a false alarm when cooking.
The Ionisation type are susceptible to moisture getting on the circuit board and causing a false alarm.

Testing either of the types of alarms needs an input of the type of gas being tested, so smoke or Carbon Monoxide, the test button does not test the sampling unit within the detector, it simply tests the elecrtical continuity .

Whatever way an individual engineer has his pricing policy it must be clearly presented with the cost of each item clearly visible.

The way some engineers and workshops like to charge for items which must be used to complete a service in addition to the advertised "service" price is wrong in so many ways.

There is a learning lesson here, if you get charged for all kinds of "extras" which you have not been asked about then you know not to use that service establishment again.

When I do a service under normal circumstances I am more than happy for the owner to watch everything I am doing and ask any questions they may have.
With the current situation that is still doable but with social distancing being important, but even so the customer is always debriefed about the service at the end.
 
Mar 14, 2005
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The "Smoke and Carbon Monoxide alarm test record " has no value as I don't think it applies to caravans, but someone cna confirm? Thanks.
There is no government requirement for touring caravans not used for hire or reward to have a formal record of CO and Smoke detector compliance. However as most caravan do have both of these, it is sensible just from a safety point of view they are checked reguarly and where neesasry batteries replaced, and teh whole unit is replaced if it has passed its expiry date.

If there were an incident where one or both of the alarms should have operated, but didn't, there could be grounds for a health and safety executive investigation into why not. Having evidence of an annual battery change and check might be useful.
 
Jul 18, 2017
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There is no government requirement for touring caravans not used for hire or reward to have a formal record of CO and Smoke detector compliance. However as most caravan do have both of these, it is sensible just from a safety point of view they are checked reguarly and where neesasry batteries replaced, and teh whole unit is replaced if it has passed its expiry date.

If there were an incident where one or both of the alarms should have operated, but didn't, there could be grounds for a health and safety executive investigation into why not. Having evidence of an annual battery change and check might be useful.
I agree, but they never changed the batteries. I do seem to recall that I changed the batteries in the smoke alarm several months ago anyway.

Damien has it spot on and I thank him for the valuable input,.
 
Nov 11, 2009
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There is no government requirement for touring caravans not used for hire or reward to have a formal record of CO and Smoke detector compliance. However as most caravan do have both of these, it is sensible just from a safety point of view they are checked reguarly and where neesasry batteries replaced, and teh whole unit is replaced if it has passed its expiry date.

If there were an incident where one or both of the alarms should have operated, but didn't, there could be grounds for a health and safety executive investigation into why not. Having evidence of an annual battery change and check might be useful.
Unlike a home smoke or CO alarm the batteries in caravan alarms could run totally down and the low battery warning chirp may not be sounding when you go to the van. Therefore a press of the test button is always useful. No sound and the battery should be replaced. My smoke detector has a 10 year battery life but it still gets checked regularly by using the test button.

But with all this talk about the caravan detectors I wonder how many people check their home detectors regularly by pressing the test button. And I’d suggest almost nobody uses aerosol CO or smoke. And where is the greatest risk? It’s at home in terms of occupancy and difficulty of escape. It’s necessary to retain a sense of propionate these matters.
 
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Mar 14, 2005
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It’s necessary to retain a sense of propionate these matters.
I totally agree people should check their domestic smoke and CO alarms on a regular basis, and consider routes to escape etc, but I'm not sure I understand your concern about the "sense of propionate" being suspect.

What is worse - not having an alarm or an alarm that doesn't work?
 

Damian

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Mar 14, 2005
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Lets not get sidetracked here.

The issue is not about how frequently a detector is tested, or not, it is about a caravan service where there is a requirement for them to be checked as part of the "service", and not charged as a separate item.

As for a CO2 alarm,,,that is beyond belief !!!! and clearly a money making scam !!!!
 
Jul 18, 2017
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Lets not get sidetracked here.

The issue is not about how frequently a detector is tested, or not, it is about a caravan service where there is a requirement for them to be checked as part of the "service", and not charged as a separate item.

As for a CO2 alarm,,,that is beyond belief !!!! and clearly a money making scam !!!!
I had no option except to pay after a bit of a rant so they have you over a barrel. The annoying part is that I was quoted over the phone £279 and assumed that was for the service plus the fitting of the wash basin. Only on arrival to collect the caravan was the extra £60 added.
Anyway the upside is that we will not use them again except for warranty work. Back to using the local AWS technician who does an excellent job for under £200 all parts inclusive and does it on the premises.
 
May 7, 2012
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The point on the smoke alarm does remind me about one service we had some time ago. The invoice revealed that the battery was a dud and they had found this, removed it, tested again and passed it and then taken the replacement battery back and said nothing.
 
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