Volkswagen Touran - Gearbox fail / oil leak - Floydster22
Long story short... I had an oil leak that was leaving large patches everywhere. The leak coincided with a MOT that was due so I asked the (high street) garage to have a look for that as well. They came back and said it was a minor leak from the sump plug. MOT passed. Was assured that was all it was. 3 days later, car breaks down just as I get off the motorway with a completely knackered gear box due to a gearbox oil leak. No other signs aside from the leak that started days before I took it into garage.
2 things really - I am in the process of trying to get the garage to accept liability, not sure how they could have missed such a leak if they had checked the car properly
Secondly, in the process of trying most affordable way of getting the car fixed. It is absolutely ruined; first garage contacted are quoting £2.5k for gearbox, clutch and flywheel.
Car is regularly serviced, around 112,000 on clock.
Any advice from anyone please? I am no expert on cars, I am just so frustrated they missed it!
Any help much appreciated!!
Volkswagen Touran - Gearbox fail / oil leak - Oli rag

If the leak was as large as you say by "leaving large patches everywhere", then it's entirely possible that all of the oil had escaped by the time the garage had a look.

Volkswagen Touran - Gearbox fail / oil leak - madf

Who decided to drive on a motorway with a gearbox leaking loads of oil?

The garage or you?

Answer that and the repsonsibility lies with your answer.

Volkswagen Touran - Gearbox fail / oil leak - DieselBoy

"Who decided to drive on a motorway with a gearbox leaking loads of oil?

The garage or you?

Answer that and the repsonsibility lies with your answer"

I read the OP as he was assured it was just a sump plug problem and there was no reason for him to suspect there was anything major amiss.

Volkswagen Touran - Gearbox fail / oil leak - Floydster22
Thanks for all your responses.
I told the garage I had what I thought was a bad oil leak, I had no idea where it was coming from. I asked them to look for where the leak was coming from as an aside to also carrying out the MOT.
They assured me that they had found the leak, that it was minor and that it was the sump plug. They said it was fine to drive and they would rectify it in the service I had booked in for following week. I checked dipstick, which was fine, then bought some more oil just in case the car indicated it was running low at any point, which it didn't.
When the RAC came out to the breakdown they said the underside of the car, and also the back was covered in gearbox oil. He also pointed out it had a particular smell, which is the same smell of the oil patches outside of my house. Therefore I know it was leaking gearbox oil before I took it to them. I don't understand why they never found it from sight or even smell alone. I asked them to look for the leak, outside of the MOT inspection. Of course I wouldn't have driven the car if I thought it had a severe leak, they assured me it didn't.
Car is 2011 Touran, TDI 2 ltr, in decent condition otherwise as regularly serviced, 112,000 miles, diesel.. Have been told today it's an expensive gearbox to replace as it is a stop/start. It just gets better and better...




Volkswagen Touran - Gearbox fail / oil leak - Miniman777

Think you need to ask why they missed the gearbox leak with the oil having a specific odour. Maybe there were two leaks, one worse than the other?

The garage will fob you off, doubtless, saying it was OK when they looked at it, but you asked them to check and they've failed - badly. It's sloppy and negligent, but proving it... forget it. Given the age & mileage etc, you'll have an uphill battle to get anything out of them towards a replacement/repair.

Looks like a replacement car or time spent calling some scrapyards for a used one, and then a decent garage to fit it as I would trust the shower who MoT'd the vehicle. Maybe another forum member has another suggestion.

Volkswagen Touran - Gearbox fail / oil leak - Floydster22

Thanks for your response, it sums up exactly how I feel. Cheers.

Volkswagen Touran - Gearbox fail / oil leak - Floydster22

thanks for this. clearly you never read my post properly and just fancied having a pop.

I'm a single mum with 2 small children, and would never risk their safety for the sake of money/convenience - hence taking it to the garage for investigation.

Volkswagen Touran - Gearbox fail / oil leak - badbusdriver

Without more detail, i'm not really sure there is anything you can do. If all you asked the garage to do was find out how much oil was leaking out, that is probably all they did. A couple of points though, oil spreads very far, especially in damp conditions, so the fact you were seeing what you felt were large patches, does not mean that it was a lot of oil. Over a long period of time, the gearbox oil eventually empties, and gearbox then goes pop. But the point is, if the garage simply checked to see how much oil was leaking, saw it wasn't actually much, they probably didn't do anything else. Maybe they should have checked the oil level in the gearbox, but that is where your words to the garage is key. Even if you told them you did want a thorough investigation into it, it would probably still boil down to your word against theirs.

How old is the car?, you haven't told us anything about it other than its mileage.

Volkswagen Touran - Gearbox fail / oil leak - paul 1963

Did you ask the garage to fix the leak or check levels? I'm sorry but I can't see you getting very far with this if not.

your best bet is to look for a used box ....

Volkswagen Touran - Gearbox fail / oil leak - Sulphur Man

To get the car to 112,000 miles implies it's been serviced by a reliable, or known, local garage. Is that the case?

Volkswagen Touran - Gearbox fail / oil leak - Floydster22

no chance, the gearbox oil was all over the underside of the car and the back of the car when it was recovered.

Volkswagen Touran - Gearbox fail / oil leak - SLO76
Although a tad incompetent all you asked the garage to do was rectify the leak which they did. They weren’t asked to check oil levels or service the car and an Mot wouldn’t check these so they’ve only done as asked. I doubt you’ll get anywhere in trying to claim but I would switch to another garage.

What age is the car? Is the service record complete? And is it in good order otherwise?

Edited by SLO76 on 12/09/2019 at 09:18

Volkswagen Touran - Gearbox fail / oil leak - pd

I can see both sides here. When oil leaks it tends to go everywhere and can be difficult to identify source without cleaning it all off and monitoring again.

It maybe the case they didn't identify the source of the leak correctly or maybe you had two leaks. I suspect it was a driveshaft oil seal leaking which went all over the gearbox and sump.

The garage may have mis identified it although if you're honest with yourself if you'd tried to fix it when it first started then you'd have seen it still leaking well before it ran out of oil.

Assuming it is a regular manual car I'd try and find a used box. The clutch and DMF may be OK - they're quoting a new one as it is sensible to replace with all the gearbox out. Depends on how long you plan to keep the car.

Volkswagen Touran - Gearbox fail / oil leak - John F

Neither misdiagnosis nor missed diagnosis (or both) are automatic grounds for negligence. I think the OP will be on a hiding to nothing if he tries to pursue this. The usual winners in situations like this are the lawyers - and the insurance companies who employ/contract them.

Volkswagen Touran - Gearbox fail / oil leak - mss1tw

Although a tad incompetent all you asked the garage to do was rectify the leak which they did. They weren’t asked to check oil levels

While you're right, that shows a pathetic level of mechanical intuition - even I would think to myself "If some has got out, some needs to go back in". And I do nothing except basic service items myself.

Volkswagen Touran - Gearbox fail / oil leak - Floydster22

2011, FSH. I have only had it a year

Volkswagen Touran - Gearbox fail / oil leak - SLO76

2011, FSH. I have only had it a year

You’ve been very unfortunate here and the garage utterly unprofessional. It may have been a fault that’s been lurking for a while, in fact it may be why the last owner sold it and at 100,000 miles or so it’s highly possible. I would’ve pointed you away from a high mileage diesel to start with and towards a much more robust petrol engined Japanese design instead but you are where you are. Only advice I can offer is to politely but firmly appeal to the garage owners better nature (if it exists) but I wouldn’t waste money pursuing them as I doubt any legal action should be successful. You could speak with trading standards or citizens advice to see if they’ll take it up for untouched but I doubt it. Sorry for your misfortune here but call for advice from the above to see if they can assist.
Volkswagen Touran - Gearbox fail / oil leak - Catfood

Did you check the engine oil level with dip stick before you assumed it was engine oil ?

If there was large patch of oil leak, Oil level warning light in VW Touran surely should lit.

Volkswagen Touran - Gearbox fail / oil leak - Floydster22

I never 'assumed' anything. The garage said I had an oil leak and that it was the sump plug. Is that not engine oil?? There was no oil light on at any stage.

The gearbox oil is completely different to engine oil, as I now understand.

Volkswagen Touran - Gearbox fail / oil leak - Andrew-T

I never 'assumed' anything. The garage said I had an oil leak and that it was the sump plug. Is that not engine oil?? There was no oil light on at any stage.

The gearbox oil is completely different to engine oil, as I now understand.

You are quite right, gearbox oil is a lot thicker. But an MoT test is not required to do more than prove a vehicle 'roadworthy', so the condition of the engine is hardly checked, other than to test that it meets emission regs. I agree that the testers were careless - I sometimes get advisories saying just 'oil leak'.

But you seem to have known about a significant leak for some time, but have waited until an MoT before investigating. Is it possible that the previous owner may have moved the car on because of it ?

Agreed with advice to look for a replacement box, and to avoid this test station in future.

Volkswagen Touran - Gearbox fail / oil leak - Floydster22
I discovered the leak 2 days before I took it in for the MOT. I asked the garage to look for the leak IN ADDITION to the MOT testing, not as part of.
I'm having the repairs done next week so I am asking them to give me their thoughts on when/how this happened. Perhaps it has been around for a while, hopefully time will tell.
Obviously I am taking it to a different garage!
Thanks for your response.
Volkswagen Touran - Gearbox fail / oil leak - galileo

The OP has, I think, been badly let down by the "High Street Garage". Wonder which one.

She noted the leak, the MOT was due, she asked them to investigate the leak and any half competent mechanic should have immediately detected that the oil was gear oil from its odour. Engine oil full on the dipstick confirms that, poor service to a non-expert customer.

Unfortunately for the OP she is unlikely to get any contribution from them as its almost impossible to prove negligence

Edited by galileo on 12/09/2019 at 14:03

 

Value my car