General Question

carolm77's avatar

Did I get ripped off in a car inspection scam?

Asked by carolm77 (1points) July 2nd, 2010

I took my vehicle to get inspected. They stated that my wipers were ripped and that they can replace them. I told them no and I would purchase my own blades to have them replace my wipers. They said no and failed the inspection on my vehicle. I feel that not only did they rip my wipers, but failed the inspection on my vehicle because I would not buy wipers from them. Can they do this? If they are not allowed to do this, where can I make a complaint?

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6 Answers

missingbite's avatar

I’m not following. Did you have them replace the wipers but not the blades? If your blades are ripped and won’t work, they have to fail the car. A good inspection place will let you go if your car is not already out of inspection. If your cars inspection is already expired, they will fail the car for wipers.

Lightlyseared's avatar

Depends how you look at life. There are certain parts of a car that are likely to fail an inspection that it’s best to check yourself before you send the car in. (Windscreen washer fluid is another classic. If the reservoir is empty they will charge you for filling it up). Wiper blades are pretty high wear items so I wouldn’t be surprised if they were damaged before the test. It’s probably going to be hard for you to prove they ripped them maliciously unless you had installed brand new blades just before the test so I don’t think complaining will get you any where.

carolm77's avatar

I meant to say blade, not wiper. Thanks for the advice. I guess I will chock it up as another lesson learned in life.

Buttonstc's avatar

Isn’t there an option for a re-test within a short period of time at no extra charge for an item this small ?

What is the policy in your state?

Also, in some states you can appeal to the state police. This happened to me in PA once. They failed me for an item (can’t remember the exact name) which I knew was bogus. I had recently purchased new front tires (elsewhere) and if that part had been defective it would have been apparent in the installation and balancing of the tires.

I called the state police and they arranged a time to meet me at the station. The police inspector checked my car himself and had them issue me a current sticker. Unfortunately there didn’t appear to be any penalty to them for trying to rip me off. (This “repair” would have been around $150 minimum so it wasn’t small potatoes).

But, find out what the policy is in your state regarding re-inspection without penalty. Try calling either your local AAA office or state police to find outwhat your options are.

BTW. Welcome to Fluther.

ApolloX64's avatar

Rubber wiper blades have a six-month service span, after that they begin to degrade quickly and will tear as a result. New style silicon blades will last up to two years if properly treated with their silicon solution at regular intervals.
Reflex style blades (no moving parts, use the tension of the wiper arm to hold them to the windshield) will last longer than the classic mechanical arm blades (usually up to 8 months), but their effectiveness is directly tied to the strength of the springs in your vehicles wiper arms that hold them down.
So in short, just because they look fine, any wiper blade will be failed by most auto repair shops if they “don’t look new enough,” and you really should be changing your blades every six to ten months anyways.

casheroo's avatar

I didn’t know you could fail for something like that, but if you fail inspection you usually can fix the issue yourself within a certain time period. I’ve done this a couple times for my cars, since it’s cheaper to do the work yourself.

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