Unleaded petrol mixed with Diesel in a Chrysler 2.5CRD

I think Andy Hewitt is overstating the case in rather overly-dramatic terms of imminent car death and immense repair bills. Yes, CRD fuel pumps
require full-time lubrication. Yes, they're intended to pump diesel rather than petrol. But, it is simply unrealistic and unnecessarily operatic to assert that the tiniest percentage of petrol will take out the pump, destroy the engine, necessitate complete replacement of the entire fuel system, etc.
Work through the maths: The OP has stated the vehicle had 1/4 tank of diesel when his wife drove onto the forecourt. That is probably an *indicated* 1/4 tank, which in real volumetric terms equates to more like 1/3 tank (accounting for the reserve quantity of fuel in the tank when the gauge indicates Empty). He further states his wife put in 11 litres of petrol followed by 40 litres of diesel.
Working from the 1/4-tank start (worst case), that means 40 litres diesel plus 11 litres petrol = 51 litres = 0.75 tank volume. Therefore, 11 out of 68 litres are petrol, and 57 out of 68 litres are diesel. Therefore, the tank contains -- worst case -- 16% petrol.
Working from the 1/3-tank start (best case), that means 40 litres diesel plus 11 litres petrol = 51 litres = 0.67 tank volume. Therefore, 11 out of 76.5 litres are petrol, and 65.5 out of 76.5 litres are diesel. Therefore, the tank contains -- best case -- 14% petrol.
Diesel fuel is sold all over the world. With the exception of North America, so is the CRD PT Cruiser. The diesel fuel sold all over the world is not the same. Its formula is varied to account for local climatic conditions. It is thinned considerably for cold regions, otherwise it would be unusable.
In real terms, therefore, the effect is as if the OP had bought a tankful of diesel in winter in Norway or Sweden.
Mr. Hewitt, you are making a much bigger, scarier deal out of this than it almost certainly really is.
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[Snipped Text]

That's OK, you can have your opinion. I'll leave you to do the experimentation.
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Andy Hewitt wrote:

Having now heard the evidence from bith the the prosecution and the defence, I'm leaning towards the side of Andy's argument. It was not a question about eminent damage, but the longer term implications. Even though the car is of low value, that doesn't mean that he can just replace the car and be up and running the next day as if nothing had happened.
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On Sat, 3 Dec 2005, Johannes wrote:

Imminent, not "eminent". And Andy claimed the damage would be severe and immediate (i.e., imminent).

Pay attention. It's a recent-model PT Cruiser CRD.
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Daniel J. Stern wrote:

<bites tongue>
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Right through!
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Never knowingly understood. (Ivor Cutler)
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Why? Just say it: he's a dick, it makes you feel better.

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If you read all of my replies you will not find any use of the word iminent, or any variation thereof. The consequences could indeed be severe though.
As yet I have no idea of the time scale involved, it's obviously a very large variable, and could be a matter of days, weeks, months years or never. All I have said is that it's a gamble if you go against the advice of the manufacturer. I've not even offered any opinion, just plain and simple known information.
Let's say that the OP decides to simply run the vehicle based on advice given here, and in a couple of months the pump does fail. What then? Who's going to offer to help the OP out of their predicament?
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It's up to him to decide which advice to accept and which to reject. This is Usenet. He asked for an opinion. Mine is to carry on. It's up to him what importance to place on this.
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wrote

That is exactly my view.
Huw
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wrote:

And I believe it to be wrong.

If it does fail in months, it will be nothing to do with today's mishap. My experience is that CR systems fail with depressing regularity. Either it will be covered by warranty within three years [if no mention is made of petrol] or the insurance will pay. There will be no closing of any 'loophole' because it is a legitimate accident. There may be an excess and a loading according to mileage covered by the insurance company though. Usually something like a 500 excess on the engine damage and something like a 25% reduction in value for every 40,000 miles covered and possibly further adjustments for age, even to the extent of writing it off if the value of the car is below a certain percentage of the repair cost.
I would just carry on and not even think of there being a problem. The car manufacturer and dealer make a mint from the insurance companies by repairing and replacing needlessly and expensively, and if any loophole is going to be closed it is this one.
Huw
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Replace 'warranty' with 'insurance'
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[Snipped Text]

Total bollocks, we could make almost as much out of a simple drain, flush and refill. When it goes to insurance we have to discount the parts and labour.
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[Snipped Text]

We haven't yet had a warranty failure on a Honda system, reread what I said.
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Do you now. You obviously haven't any idea of the new dealer standards and how closely we have to work with the manufacturer now. The public wanted 'Block Excemption', and now they've got it.
If the repair is under warranty, then we make nothing on parts and have a very fixed control over the labour (at a vastly reduced hourly rate). If it goes to insurance, we still have to reduce the cost of the parts and labour to get the job approved.
It could be almost as profitable, and more desireable for all parties to be presented with a vehicle we can simply drain and flush.
As for the parts, do you *really* think we'd sell them on again having just removed them from a vehicle because we are advised they are unfit for use?
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wrote:

Only very slightly and the number of parts you change is almost criminal. I wasn't born yesterday and have a good knowledge of the trade. Many practices are less than borderline honest. Don't tell me that you make as much from a simple drain and refill as from a 3k refit of fuel system or a 10k engine and fuel system repair. These figures are yours by the way.

Good. Long may they remain reliable.

I know exactly how the warranty system works and how difficult it is to make money within it. Insurance gives a far greater profit opportunity.

Then you are very different to any other franchise who give a standard stock order and labour cost less a percentage. For instance some discount the standard labour rate by 20% which means a 60 rate is discounted to 48. Big deal, there is still profit there unless overheads are just too high.
and have

Ah. See above.

I do not believe so.

If you were an efficient dealer and knew there was nothing wrong with the parts then they would be perfectly good for fitting to stock used cars of a certain age. the only cost would be storage. I guess that it is these details that make the difference between an efficient family business and a big dealer group with 'here today gone tomorrow' attitude.
Huw
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[Snipped Text]

[Snipped Text]

hmm, slightly better.

Actually, the average warranty labour rate is about 42. Some manufacturers supply the parts for warranty uninvoiced (VW/Audi/Seat do I know), so there is no opportunity to make anything at all.

But then I'm considering many more factors than you are. A drain and refill might take a couple of hours or so, and we could charge for a bit more, but then that is how the techs make bonus isn't it?
The insurance or warranty repair is a much larger job, fixed by a standard book time, and discounted parts. It could take a full 4-5 hours to do the components replacement, or a lot more if the engine goes. Some of the modern engines are complex enough that you don't get them done much quicker than book time anymore.
So, work out a, say, 18 hour engine replacement at 100% efficiency, or a drain and flush and 16 hours of servicing at 130% efficiency.
I work it out that we make about 300 extra by not doing the big repair on labour alone. We also get a much larger margin on fast moving service parts too. So yes, it's more profitable to do the flush.

Hmm, I hope I don't buy a car from your garage. One thing you seem to have forgotten is 'liability', if the manufacturer recommends we do a job a certain way, we basically have to do it that way, it has fuck all to do with stitching up the consumer - they already did that all by themselves when they insisted on liability, block excemption and data protection. All we do now is to cover our arses.
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wrote:

Not that far apart then are we.
Some

Assuming the parts aren't already in stock. The chances are they won't be of course because the motor trade hardly ever stocks what they really should to maximise their parts sales opportunities. There are exceptions I know.

Yes but you keep the fitter in chargeable work for longer when he would possibly be sweeping the floor otherwise. 40+ an hour is a profit opportunity in my book even if the hours are tight to the point that a couple cannot be charged for.

"Covering our arses" sums it all up nicely.
Huw
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[Snipped Text]

Makes quite a difference over a year.

For warranty repairs we cannot stock anything, all warranty parts are ordered from a claim, and send for *that* job. This is becoming more common now.
Besides, would you really want to have a DI pump and injectors in stock, just in case?
[Snipped Text]

Of course it depends on your lead time.

What, no answer there? ;-)
[Snipped Text]

Indeed, I suggest you go and have a good look at liability laws, and their implications to anybody that works in the trade. You would not want to be on the receiving end of a liability claim.
The laws we have in place both protect us and the consumer, as well as hinder us.
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wrote:

There are greater variations between dealers in the same town in my experience

Not common and not efficient for a quick turn-around of vehicles. What I want is a vehicle diagnosed, repaired and out of the door and back with the owner in one smooth cycle.

No. Something that high value would be VOR for next morning delivery. Are you as a dealer not penalised if you do not order a high percentage of your parts for stock? Most manufacturers have targets for stock and service orders as a percentage of all orders. If VOR's in particular exceed a percentage, perhaps as low as 15% of total orders, then discounts on parts will be lost and will cost the dealership loads of money.

I think your costed hours are weighted unrealistically to make your point.

Funny thing is, I have no problem with it and it certainly does not lead to changing unnecessary parts. I do however acknowledge that the most economical remedy is often impossible these days due to know-it-all [read 'know nothing'] customers wanting a full warranty on difficult repairs. In other words, if a system is repaired and something possibly not related in the same system fails within weeks, then the customer expects it to be repaired again free. As we know nothing is free, certainly not parts and labour, so it is becoming more common not to attempt a repair but to replace a whole system. This has the double advantage that less skilled labour is needed in car dealers because all they really need most of the time is a 'fitter' who can replace whole components with new ones which are fully covered by manufacturers warranty. I come from another part of a similar trade where stripping down and repairing components and systems is still normal and common practice and where this is often done on site, so the skills needed are in a different league really. No, I am not a mechanic, before you ask.
Huw
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[Snipped Text]

There is, but what's that to do with it?
[Snipped Text]

I'm afraid it is.

Agreed.
Can't argue with that.
Mind you, in our case there isn't enough warranty volume for it to be an issue.

No, most manufacturers work on a two day stock delivery, you only get penalised if you want it next day. In our case we can order stock for next day up to 3pm.
We only get penalised if we order too much after the cut off.

Not here, they've almost eliminated the need for it.

[Snipped Text]

Do you now. What would you use then?
[Snipped Text]

Absolutely. Can you blame us though?

Obviously not dealing with retail in the same way then?
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wrote:

I don't think the customer considers the volume, but I accept that you have few serious warranty claims.

In my case I can order up to 6pm for next day 8am for most of the year but with a 5pm order deadline at other times. Service orders are similar to what you describe but stock orders are collated once a week for delivery within one week but if they are out of manufacturers stock these will take a lower priority while they have the highest discount rate.

Since you are asking for hypothetical times for hypothetical jobs then I could well slant the figures in any way I liked but I won't.

Given that you probably don't know your customers then no.

Oh yes. Retail but with a rather superior service.
Huw
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