The dealer damaged my car by over-tightening the wheel nuts, but they refuse to cover the cost - what do I do now?

I have a 2011 Ford Focus, which I bought from a main dealer in February. I went to get an MoT and knew that I would need new tyres. The garage tried to remove the locking wheel nuts on all four wheels, but couldn't undo any as they had been tightened too tight. In doing so, they've damaged the locking wheel nut socket. The garage even tried their spare sockets but to no avail. The car was serviced a week before I bought it from the dealer and I haven't had to touch the wheels. I explained this to the dealer and showed that they were the last people to remove the wheels, so they're responsible for the problem. They said it's not covered under the warranty and I will be charged. What do I do now?

Asked on 26 November 2017 by Bryan Roberts

Answered by Honest John
Write to the dealer principal of the dealership that sold you the car stating that you hold him fully responsible for the over-tightened wheel nuts and thereby liable for the full cost of the problems this has caused, including labour time at the MoT station, the final cost of removal of the lock nuts and the cost of replacing all of them with new ones from

If he does not willingly meet these costs, then you will take the matter to Small Claims:
Similar questions
For the winter I wish to swap the original alloy wheels on my Toyota Yaris with steel wheels and winter tyres. The steel wheel supplier has told me that I can use the nuts for the alloy wheels for fixing...
My 2012 Land Rover Discovery 4 went in for its first service and I was told that the spare wheel was missing. The service engineer at Lookers said they had seen a dozen similar cases where the cable is...
I am unable to find the wheelnut to undo the locking wheelnut on the wheels. Do you know someone who can give me a replacement other than through Renault? We are in Somerset.
Related models
Refined and upmarket feel to the cabin. Comfortable and quiet on the move. More efficient petrol and diesel engines. Better ride quality. Excellent £750 Driver Assist Pack.

Ask Honest John

Value my car