this forum has been a cracking source of information for me in the 12 months I've had my vectra, however I have had a slight problem with a recent repair and I'm wondering what the best way to proceed is.
2 weeks ago, my brakes started squealing, followed by a complete seizure in the rear driver side brake caliper.
I had a quote and the repair work done at a local garage( about £220 incl VAT), they replaced the caliper on the driver side and discs and pads on both back wheels.
When I picked the car up, I had to spend a longer time than normal bedding the brake pads in - took me a good hour or so before the brakes felt even half useful, the brake pedal had a lot of travel before anything happened and the strangest thing was the handbrake was now really stiff and only went up about 2 clicks, making a creaking noise and going to one side when applied.
Over the last 2 weeks the brakes have got better and the pedal is firmer, I assumed there might have been some air in the pipe or something, so I though no more of it, and someone had told me that the handbrake is linked to the driver side brake in some way, so I left it thinking that it would get better (the handbrake).
Now, I live on a steep hill with on street parking.
I'm sure you can see where this is going
I had a knock on the door last night from one of our more friendly neighbours. "Is that your car down there?" (with 3 police cars parked behind it, lights flashing and the whole street outside gawping)
basically, the handbrake had held on the top notch for a few minutes (long enough for me to get in the house and make a cup of tea) before my car had rolled about 20 metres down the hill and into one of my neighbours cars.
I normally leave it in gear, but not this time.
All in all, very little damage was done, as it only hit one car but it's still gonna cost me.
So here's the question.
I've offered to pay for the damage to my neighbours car without invoving the insurance (as I have a £350 excess, so it's gonna cost me that whatever) but is there any way of finding out if the work the garage did is what has caused the handbrake to fail?
Would it be worth contacting the garage to see if they would at least fix the handbrake for free, with perhaps a veiled threat of some sort of legal action if they refused. Or should I take it to a different garage to inspect the handbrake and then use that to either bill the original garage, or to take the claim through the insurers with some sort of reduced liabilty for myself (i.e blaming the garage).
any help would be appreciated, and also if anyone knows what would be a good price for taking an inch deep dent and 6 inch long scratch out of the front wing of a '96 Peugot 306, so I don't get ripped off too badly...!
cheers in advance