What to do When Taking Your Car to the Dealer:

  1. Put all complaints in writing on a separate piece of paper, and give a copy to the dealership saying, in your words, what the problem is. KEEP A COPY FOR YOUR RECORDS.
  2. Review with the service advisor/service writer the exact words being written on the repair order for the mechanic. If the wording does not clearly say what you are complaining of, the mechanic will not be looking for anything wrong with your car except what is written on the repair order.
  3. After one unsuccessful repair, ask to drive the car with the mechanic or speak to him/her personally to discuss the problem. A service writer often will misinterpret or misunderstand the complaint being made. Service writers are not mechanics, and so they can only offer a limited understanding in assisting you.
  4. After two unsuccessful repair attempts, and if the above suggestions are not applicable, write a letter to the service manager, restating your concerns, along with the inability of the dealership to fix the car.
  5. After three unsuccessful repairs, or if the vehicle has been out-of-service due to the concerns for an excessive period of time (typically 10-30 days depending on your state law), it is time to take action.
  6. Writing a letter to Volvo Cars, Inc. sounds like a good idea, yet it is likely that the response will be generic and/or suggest that you take the car back to the dealership for more repairs. If this sounds like anything but a solution to your problem, that is because car manufacturers handle customer complaints in accordance with the degree of action being taken. A written letter from a customer is far less serious than a letter from a lawyer. While it is possible to receive a meaningful response to a written letter sent by you, it is more likely that you have yet to get Volvo’s attention. In short, if you send a letter, do not expect a solution.
  7. Get legal help. There are Federal and State Laws in every state that protect consumers and give specific legal rights. Generally speaking, newer cars 4 years old or less which have the above problems, or any concerns that substantially impair the use, value or safety of a motor vehicle can qualify for relief, up to as much as a full refund or new car. Experienced consumer lawyers collect 100 percent of their fees from the manufacturer in addition to the recovery for the client by law.