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Updated letter to BMWNA--for Void Warranty


Dick_at_Lake_Tahoe_NV

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Dick_at_Lake_Tahoe_NV

I have taken your suggestions and updated my letter. Thanks for all your help, now see if I "hit the nail on the head" Comments appreciated.

Dick

 

BMWNA December 26, 2008

 

Subject: Denial of Warranty for my engine repair.

 

 

In early December 2008 BMWNA denied a warranty claim on my 2005 BMW R1200RT, VIN: WB 10388035ZM17168. I am quite confused as to the justification for this denial that I understand from my servicing dealer, Sierra BMW, is in opposition to their analysis of the problem and their recommendation for warranty coverage. I hereby request your assistance by providing me with a written explanation of why my warranty was denied.

 

The Service Manager at Sierra BMW, Scott McKay, is a Certified BMW Service Manager and a Certified Master BMW Technician. After completing a partial disassembly of the engine, Scott found a very slightly scuffed piston. Scott told BMWNA and me that his belief was this scuffing was not oil related. This determination would be strongly supported by the fact that he found no other abnormal wear in the engine—just a small scuffing on one piston; the cylinder wall had no damage. I believe it is possible the knocking-problem could have been corrected by relieving tight clearances through disassembly/reassembly of the engine even if no parts had been replaced.

 

I am a loyal BMW fan and have owned several BMW motorcycles since I started street-riding again in 1998. These include a ’99 F-650, a ’97 R1100RT, a ’02 R1150RT and now my R1200RT. I am hopeful that you will take a personal interest in my warranty problem and help me with what BMW mechanics, many BMW owners and I believe is a good faith warranty claim.

 

In light of these things I am asking you to honor the warranty and cover the costs of repairing my motorcycle, which has now been completed by Sierra BMW.

 

 

Sincerely Yours,

 

 

 

Richard Keenly

 

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Looks good, better than the previous. I learned a while ago that keeping it short and to the point is better. Send it certified, to a person, if possible.

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MUCH better--now who are you going to send it to? Is there any way you can get names/addresses of, not just the guy who denied the claim, but some others farther up the food chain? The more, the merrier. There is nothing folks in corporate America (or Chermany) these days like to do better than second guess their colleagues and show how stupid they are, especially when they perceive it enhances themselves! Go for it. :thumbsup:

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Looks good. I did a cursory Google check but didn't find out who was the head honcho of BMW Motorrad USA. That's where I'd send it. It may delay the response slightly as the letter gets delegated, but rest assured it won't get lost. Someone will be held accountable for a response if you send to the top.

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Well written. Shows loyalty. Shows support by your dealer. Shows your willingness to fix the bike anyway and that your not a deadbeat. Non-threatening, asking for personal attention and help.

 

I am a COO for a very large computer company. If I received the letter, I would tell my team to fix this. Good client, reasonable, and important we protect our brand.

 

Here is a link to the big office.... I would write the highest offices I could contact. The leaders of the company will most likely be willing to part with an internal expense for the loyalty you have shown and for the many BMW owners who will be following your story. Best of luck.

 

http://www.bmwgroup.com/e/nav/index.html?../0_0_www_bmwgroup_com/home/home.html&source=overview

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  • 2 weeks later...
Dick_at_Lake_Tahoe_NV
Richard...Any news or updates...Curious

 

BMWNA would not budge on the warantee. However, the my service manager worked with the district manager and he agreed to cover 1/2 the work (about $1,100) as "Customer Goodwill". Under the circumstances I felt that was a fair offer. I paid about $1,400, but at my request the dealer installed new rings on the other piston, new rod bearings and a new alternator belt--which of course I paid for. So now I have a nearly new engine, and the final resolution is fine with me. The dealership had previously installed a new cam chain tensioner, as they thought that was the problem--but it didn't fix the knock. My bike had 34,000 miles and was 1-month from going out of warantee.

 

Several other posts indicate that a "knocking at start-up for a few seconds" is not uncommon for BMW Boxer engines--so maybe I just got too concerned trying to get it "fixed".

 

I sent my letter to the dealer for his comments before sending it on to BMWNA--the dealer suggested I not send it until he finished trying to get some concession from the District Manager--and so I never sent the letter.

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Richard...as long as you are satisfied with the end result, that is all that matters. I'd say if you got an all new top end for $1400 or so, that's pretty good. Your engine should go a very long ways....and you should have piece of minde.

 

Good luck with the new break-in...

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Richard...Any news or updates...Curious

 

BMWNA would not budge on the warantee. However, the my service manager worked with the district manager and he agreed to cover 1/2 the work (about $1,100) as "Customer Goodwill". Under the circumstances I felt that was a fair offer. .....

 

A 100% cover would have been great but i think the 50/50 split was fair also.

 

Great job in working thru a very difficult issue.

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Glad to know you're satisfied and that all is well. Thanks for keeping us up-to-date and if nothing else, perhaps helping others from making the same mistake of mixing parts - either pre or post warranty expiration.

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Don_Eilenberger
I sent my letter to the dealer for his comments before sending it on to BMWNA--the dealer suggested I not send it until he finished trying to get some concession from the District Manager--and so I never sent the letter.
And I think that is really a key lesson to be learned.

 

IF the dealer tries to work with you - they have much more influence in how the warranty claim is handled than anything you can do. To collect on a questionable claim (or out of warranty claim) the dealer has to go to bat for you. It may not sound fair - but that's the reality of the situation. BMW has covered some way out of warranty claims, at least partially due to a dealer going to bat for the customer. When they do - a 6 pack of some good German brew is probably a nice way to say "Thanks" - and you'll be remembered as someone who appreciates what they do for you.

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Dick_at_Lake_Tahoe_NV

When they do - a 6 pack of some good German brew is probably a nice way to say "Thanks" - and you'll be remembered as someone who appreciates what they do for you.

 

Don,

What a great idea. I'm going to pick up my bike today, and I'll take a case of the Best German Beer I can find. Thanks for the suggestion!

Best Regards, Dick

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