eNate
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Re: Which versions of the AC compressor have people had failures with?

Mon Jun 01, 2020 3:31 pm

I think you guys are talking past each other. You both have valid points.

BMW is under no obligation, legally. But for brand goodwill, this isn't a fly-by-night mail-order EV conversion, and you'd think it would be in the best interest of the brand to handle this differently.

Why is Alan still here? Because BMW didn't pay him to go away. Although the likelihood of this failure happening to any one of us is unlikely, he's planted the seed of doubt, maybe even scared a few buyers away. I know I think of Alan whenever I hear my AC running. He's doing exactly what any one of us ought to do if we get burned as consumers -- being persistent.
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MKH
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Re: Which versions of the AC compressor have people had failures with?

Tue Jun 02, 2020 5:58 am

Why is Alan still here? Because BMW didn't pay him to go away.
Exactly. My opinion, the Dealer first screwed up the AC service they did. Either they did it wrong, causing the failure, or they miss-diagnosed the issue, and decided to just service the AC compressor 'and see what happens' instead of replacing it. Then when the AC failed catastrophically, they refused to take the blame. BMW and the regional BMW service manager likely had a conversation with the Dealer, and with the Dealer not stepping up, they should have. BMW even acknowledged that the fault was not 'normal' and something BMW should have addresses, by paying Alan $2K.
Mark H.
2015 i3 Rex, Capparis White, Tera World, Technology & Driving Assistant, Parking Assistant, Harman Kardon Audio System, 19 inch 427 wheels, EVoInnovate EVSE

i3Alan
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Re: Which versions of the AC compressor have people had failures with?

Tue Jun 02, 2020 12:01 pm

skeptic wrote:
Mon Jun 01, 2020 1:32 pm
I do wonder about one thing. Who did the AC recharge? It's suspicious to me that this catastrophic failure happened only 2 weeks after you had the AC recharged.
My BMW sales dealer's service department did the original topping off of the refrigerant and claimed there was no problem found other than low refrigerant. I also explained that one or more of the following could have contributed to the $22,292,65 in damages:

1) The dealer failed to properly diagnose the failure at the first visit on June 12, 2019, before the catastrophic damage was done, possibly due to inadequate servicing instruction from BMW.
2) The dealer improperly serviced the vehicle then, perhaps overcharging the refrigerant and/or failing to add the requisite oil with the refrigerant.
3) BMW failed to properly design the AC system, most probably due to leaving out a critical particle trap.

The manager of the dealership promised to work with BMW on my behalf to resolve my problems. The conclusion was zero responsibility accepted by the dealer and $2000 from BMW as goodwill, but not acknowledging any responsibility.

With regards to me just going away. I intend to keep the incident well known to others. Not a grudge, nor anything eating me up inside.

I filed a formal request to the dealer and BMW for full restitution totaling $7838.62. When that debt is paid, then I will get out of BMW's face. Given that the laws in Arizona strongly favoring businesses on such issues (e.g., even if BMW is found guilty and owing the full $7838.62, I cannot collect attorney fees necessary to win the case that will certainly be more than the claim won, yet $8K is way to big for small claims in AZ), I have found no other lever to collect my claim against BMW other than public embarrassment. Perhaps BMW will get tired of hearing from me, and will try to settle with me.

skeptic
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Re: Which versions of the AC compressor have people had failures with?

Tue Jun 02, 2020 2:45 pm

i3Alan wrote:
Tue Jun 02, 2020 12:01 pm
skeptic wrote:
Mon Jun 01, 2020 1:32 pm
I do wonder about one thing. Who did the AC recharge? It's suspicious to me that this catastrophic failure happened only 2 weeks after you had the AC recharged.
My BMW sales dealer's service department did the original topping off of the refrigerant and claimed there was no problem found other than low refrigerant. I also explained that one or more of the following could have contributed to the $22,292,65 in damages:

1) The dealer failed to properly diagnose the failure at the first visit on June 12, 2019, before the catastrophic damage was done, possibly due to inadequate servicing instruction from BMW.
2) The dealer improperly serviced the vehicle then, perhaps overcharging the refrigerant and/or failing to add the requisite oil with the refrigerant.
3) BMW failed to properly design the AC system, most probably due to leaving out a critical particle trap.
I'm with you on 1 and 2. Just sounds fishy that you'd have the major failure only 2 weeks after they serviced it. Had to be either starting to fail (why it was low) or they did it wrong (wrong amount or type of oil as you mentioned). Option 3 is a dead end, period. No legal recourse and short of a class action lawsuit you will never get anywhere. If I were you and not going to give up, I'd push items 1 and 2 hard. The fact that it was a BMW dealership that serviced your AC 2 weeks prior to over $22k worth of AC related failure should give you a decent shot. If you topped it off yourself or some 3rd party shop did then you're pretty much screwed, but this was BMW themselves.

The manager of the dealership promised to work with BMW on my behalf to resolve my problems. The conclusion was zero responsibility accepted by the dealer and $2000 from BMW as goodwill, but not acknowledging any responsibility.

With regards to me just going away. I intend to keep the incident well known to others. Not a grudge, nor anything eating me up inside.

I filed a formal request to the dealer and BMW for full restitution totaling $7838.62. When that debt is paid, then I will get out of BMW's face. Given that the laws in Arizona strongly favoring businesses on such issues (e.g., even if BMW is found guilty and owing the full $7838.62, I cannot collect attorney fees necessary to win the case that will certainly be more than the claim won, yet $8K is way to big for small claims in AZ), I have found no other lever to collect my claim against BMW other than public embarrassment. Perhaps BMW will get tired of hearing from me, and will try to settle with me.
I didn't mean to sound like I was saying you should go away, but a couple people have mentioned it so I probably worded it poorly. I was simply curious, maybe you bought another i3 or were planning on it, or maybe waiting for the i4 to come out next year and just wanted to stay active in the group...

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MKH
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Re: Which versions of the AC compressor have people had failures with?

Wed Jun 03, 2020 5:26 am

Mentioned this whole situation to a lawyer friend. His take was that the Dealer is responsible. To paraphrase what he said
1. They were contracted by you to repair an AC issue.
2. They worked on the AC and certified to you that it was good.
3. The AC failed catastrophically well within the normal 30-day dealer warranty period for a repair.

He said to leave BMW Corporate out of any claim against the Dealer - that the case should be about the faulty work done on the car by the dealer, period. They were responsible for the repair, and their liability insurance should pay for the damages. He said there is no legal basis for suing BMW, unless you can round up enough people with the same issue to launch a class-action suit.

I'd be suing the Dealership for failure to honor their own warranty for their (botched) repair, which in turn totaled the car.
And chapter and verse of this would be on the desk of any local TV Station or Newspaper consumer advocate/reporter.
Mark H.
2015 i3 Rex, Capparis White, Tera World, Technology & Driving Assistant, Parking Assistant, Harman Kardon Audio System, 19 inch 427 wheels, EVoInnovate EVSE

i3Alan
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Re: Which versions of the AC compressor have people had failures with?

Wed Jun 03, 2020 9:48 am

MKH wrote:
Wed Jun 03, 2020 5:26 am
I'd be suing the Dealership for failure to honor their own warranty for their (botched) repair, which in turn totaled the car.
And chapter and verse of this would be on the desk of any local TV Station or Newspaper consumer advocate/reporter.
Good suggestion, but the local lawyers (plural) I talked to advised me the legal system in AZ on such a case strongly favors the dealer, and pursuing the case in court would be a fools errand. An expected win would be a loss economically.

Also note that there is no good evidence that the first service was botched. It is entirely possible that the low refrigerant was properly refilled, and that there may have been no evidence of a pending compressor failure present. Any dealer warranty for the refrigerant would be mostly limited to repairing refrigerant leaks later found that should have been found at the first service. There may be a strong likelihood of dealer service incompetence/failure, but almost certainly not legally useful evidence.

I did contact a couple of consumer advocates (TV and paper), and both thought their odds of running up their annual tally of dollars collected for their readers/viewers (their main goal) was small and chose not to pursue it. The other main goal of such advocates is to get publicity for specific cases that easily draw on the public's empathy. It is damn hard to get empathy for luxury car brand customers. That seriously weakens the advocate's ability to persuade the dealer or company to pay.

That leaves me mostly with public shaming. SHAME ON YOU, CHAPMAN BMW in Chandler, AZ, and SHAME ON YOU BMW USA. More shame to come later...

DavidSPumpkins
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Re: Which versions of the AC compressor have people had failures with?

Mon Jun 15, 2020 4:14 pm

2014 i3
<40,000 miles
Compressor failed and needs to be replaced

Was shocked at the initial quote - we are in negotiations - but in comparison to this story it’s nothing.

Husband currently in dog house he was going to purchase extended warranty last year but apparently never got around to it. Policy would have covered this. Buy a warranty if you can!

i3Alan
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Re: Which versions of the AC compressor have people had failures with?

Tue Jun 16, 2020 9:28 am

DavidSPumpkins wrote:
Mon Jun 15, 2020 4:14 pm
Was shocked at the initial quote - we are in negotiations
Please post back with the initial quote amount, and the final negotiated cost for repair of the compressor. My quote did not separate the labor for the compressor, so I have little idea what the compressor job alone costs.

jlangham
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Re: Which versions of the AC compressor have people had failures with?

Tue Jun 30, 2020 12:36 pm

i3Alan wrote:
Tue Jun 16, 2020 9:28 am
DavidSPumpkins wrote:
Mon Jun 15, 2020 4:14 pm
Was shocked at the initial quote - we are in negotiations
Please post back with the initial quote amount, and the final negotiated cost for repair of the compressor. My quote did not separate the labor for the compressor, so I have little idea what the compressor job alone costs.
Alan and David,

I'm also in Phoenix, my AC never was really good when I bought it from the Dealer in Chandler, but now it was only blowing hot air. Took it to the dealer. Long story short, quote to fix air conditioner, brake service and two new tires was $23K. Compressor supposedly shredded apart causing metal shavings in the coolant lines (sound familiar Alan). Compressor work only is quoted at $3800, but still have the $542 air conditioner service added. They wanted/suggested replacing all lines, valves, compressor, etc. is why the quote so high. Ended up (after I got up from the floor after passing out at the quote) was told them to put it back together and I'd pick it up. So, ended up paying $542 for a car wash (and not even a good car wash).

The truth is, to me, it seems like they didn't do anything to the car. Not sure they took anything apart. My frunk stuff looked like it was in the same place it was when I took it to them. My BMW app did not show them putting any mileage at all - though not sure it does register if it's driven less than a mile. Just makes me wonder if they didn't want a repeat of what Alan went through because I believe it was the same service department.

No AC in 110 degree heat is not good, but dont' want to pay more to "fix" my AC (and possibly have it happen again) than I paid for the entire car!

alohart
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Re: Which versions of the AC compressor have people had failures with?

Tue Jun 30, 2020 3:03 pm

jlangham wrote:
Tue Jun 30, 2020 12:36 pm
No AC in 110 degree heat is not good, but dont' want to pay more to "fix" my AC (and possibly have it happen again) than I paid for the entire car!
You might have significantly reduced power on very hot days because the A/C compressor also cools the battery pack. With no battery pack cooling, the battery management system will protect the hot battery pack by reducing its power output.
Aloha,
Art

2014 BMW i3 Arravani Grey, Giga World, Tech + Driving Assist, Parking Assist, DC Fast Charging, JuiceBox EVSE

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