QLD Faulty New Engine Sold via Gumtree - Australian Consumer Law Responsibilities?

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JensS

Member
15 November 2017
4
0
1
Hi,

I am based in QLD. I had an issue with my work van where it was off the road due to engine failing (I am self employed with maintenance and airconditioning work) and after some research determined it was better for me to import a new complete motor than to have my motor rebuilt here or to purchase 2nd hand motor from wrecker. Subsequently I imported two complete motors, advertised by the overseas supplier as brand new which I also questioned and was told in writing brand new, once arrived one went into my van while the other I sold via Gumtree advertised as a complete brand new engine to NSW based Buyer, I also delivered to the Buyer for a small fee as we have a trailer.

I was asked by the Buyer about warranty, I explained the situation that I have imported from a supplier and that I also had a minor issue with my own motor and the supplier had sent a new part for the motor promptly which I told the Buyer of and also my thinking would be that any warranty would come from the supplier with my assistance (unfortunately only verbally and not in writing) as I have purchased the motors.

In any case, the buyer's engine which I sold him stopped working after 10 mins (I am not clear of the cause) with mechanic advising it is a major problem, replacement was not an option as I was not confident the supplier could deliver in 30 days as the Buyer was asking for. They are claiming that the motor is rebuilt and not new, a hose was found cut and some other items had wear marks, the mechanic advised the Buyer of this while installing, prior to running / failure and Buyer did not request a refund at that time (I have this in writing from the mechanic) later Buyer advising verbally that he would have been happy provided the engine did not fail.

I feel sorry for the Buyer as he is now without his work van and an engine that is not running, I offered to refund him the purchase price while I deal with the supplier for replacement provided costs for my delivery and pick up from to/him are covered. Buyer rejected seeking refund of the purchase price (less the original delivery fee) and also compensation for the removal of the failed engine from the supplier or me if the supplier does not, while not claiming loss for income he also mentioned costs for alternative rental vehicle, etc.

I then proposed that I would refund purchase price (less the delivery) and collect the engine provided it is in similar state which delivered (failed/not working but not that they remove turbo or other items/parts which are on the engine) provided any claims for compensation, if any are for the supplier and not me personally and on that basis would then refund at time of collection from Buyer.

The sale was via gumtree, I advertised as a complete new engine as to my knowledge it was/is. I do have an ABN for my work and the Buyer asked for a receipt with ABN for his tax purposes which I provided. Unfortunately seems Buyer wants to involve Fair Trading and alike for compensation resolution as we are not able to resolve ourselves and he has rejected my offer which I thought was fair. I have looked at the various NSW and QLD Consumer Gtee's and Fair Trading, a number of exceptions for private sellers and private sales but as I have a business and issued invoice the sale might be considered business?

To complicate and also to be very honest I have also purchased a 3rd engine for another van I owned, this was a different model/type of engine from the same supplier, this 3rd engine has taken far too long to arrive and I have subsequently sold the vehicle. While this 3rd engine should still arrive at some point, where I was planning to install into my other van I may now sell the engine so might contradict "one off sale" although with all these issues I dont really want to go down the same road again and might just buy a failed van that needs a motor and drive it myself!

Also not clear whether the engine supplied is indeed brand new or rebuilt from the supplier which might warrant a Buyers claim due to my false advertsing? I have been in contact with the supplier on behalf of the Buyer for a replacement/warranty, the supplier has advised that they will arrange a replacement engine (most likely delivered to me as I was going to refund the Buyer his purchase price), no firm timeframe from the supplier, also the supplier advised they need to assess the failed engine before considering any compensation as could be an installation related issue so open and positive dialogue with the supplier which the Buyer is fully aware of.

The Buyers mechanic also added aftermarket parts to the engine, also a new thermostat for some reason which I believe was prior to engine being run.

I want to do the right thing but also dont want want to be walked over by the Buyer who initally said he wanted a simple resolution. Appreciate help as to what my likely responsibilities are under Australian Consumer Law and what rights the Buyer has?
 

Clancy

Well-Known Member
6 April 2016
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68
2,289
Why on Earth would you involve your ABN number in the sale?? Your not making a business out of selling the engines.

The buyer seems like one of those types where 'if you give an inch' they smell weakness and try to take a mile.
 

JensS

Member
15 November 2017
4
0
1
Hi, the Buyer requested an invoice, it was just my generic work invoice with ABN and other details prefilled.
 

Clancy

Well-Known Member
6 April 2016
973
68
2,289
Hi, the Buyer requested an invoice, it was just my generic work invoice with ABN and other details prefilled.

You are allowed to say 'no' .... if i was going to sell something privately on Gumtree and a buyer asked for an invoice i would say no, and if they said not going to buy, i say 'seeya'.

I think car engines require a paper trail for the RTA though? Not sure exactly how that works? So you could simply have given him a copy of your purchase invoice?
 

JensS

Member
15 November 2017
4
0
1
I know that now. I figured I would need to declare the income at tax time and as Buyer using the engine in a work related vehicle that he will claim the expense on his tax. I also included an extract of the packing list and order, Buyer had asked for the contacts of the Supplier to be included (for warranty purposes if any) which I did include from the packing list.

Any thoughts going forward on my legal responsibilities and Buyers rights?
 

Clancy

Well-Known Member
6 April 2016
973
68
2,289
I do not know what you can do next? Can someone else answer? ,... but as you have given him an invoice with your company ABN then, i think that kinda puts you behind the 8 ball so to speak?

Mebe you can have a look on Ebay at sellers who are selling new engines and just take a look at their terms and conditions and it may give you an idea what they are trying to protect themselves from?
 

Norman S

Member
15 November 2017
1
0
1
I think his ABN is for Air-conditioning and General Maintenance and not at all involved in the car industry . That should make a difference , Clancy ?
 

Clancy

Well-Known Member
6 April 2016
973
68
2,289
I think his ABN is for Air-conditioning and General Maintenance and not at all involved in the car industry . That should make a difference , Clancy ?

It could be, but i would think that what would take priority is how you represented the sale to the customer? He gave an invoice representing it as a commercial sale, then it is a commercial sale even though in reality it is a private sale from someone who also happens to own an unrelated business.
 

JensS

Member
15 November 2017
4
0
1
Thanks Clancy. Based on the information from the NSW Consumer Guarantee website and other information available to me I have proposed that the Buyers returns the engine to me at his cost, the engine is to be inspected by independent 3rd party to determine condition and cause of failure at my cost, depending on which either a refund or replacement to be arranged.
 

Clancy

Well-Known Member
6 April 2016
973
68
2,289
Thanks Clancy. Based on the information from the NSW Consumer Guarantee website and other information available to me I have proposed that the Buyers returns the engine to me at his cost, the engine is to be inspected by independent 3rd party to determine condition and cause of failure at my cost, depending on which either a refund or replacement to be arranged.

Most commercial sellers on Ebay have similar conditions. The only thing that would concern me is that you had no terms and conditions stipulating who pays transport costs, but if the customer agrees, well and good.