Can you claim money back for misdiagnosis?

Discussion in 'Plumbers' Talk' started by CharlieT, Mar 29, 2021.

  1. CharlieT

    CharlieT New Member

    Need some thoughts and advice on this:

    So I had a booking with the first company/engineer to diagnose why our HW/CH wasn't working simultaneously, which they diagnosed as a faulty pump and needs replacing.
    We then called a 2nd company to diagnose and they found that the pump was fine and the problem was simply a faulty zone valve which they managed to fix and resolve our issue completely.

    I've been attempting to claim back money from the 1st company for misdiagnosis. And have provided them a report from the 2nd engineer to say that the issue was just a faulty HW zone valve. (S plan)

    The first engineer/company has strongly disputed this and said the engineer did a correct diagnosis and conveniently claimed that the 6 days between the appointments resulted in further complications which would cause a different diagnosis result. Does a pump magically fix itself in 6 days?

    What are people's opinions on this? Can you claim money back for a misdiagnosis? would it be a winnable case or just accept it as a loss? The amount paid was £175
    Last edited: Mar 29, 2021
  2. AnotherTopJob

    AnotherTopJob Screwfix Select

    To clarify, you got a diagnosis from the 1st company and paid them £175.

    Why did you then go to another company for another diagnosis?

    Normally a diagnosis charge would be added if/when the work was authorised. How long was spent diagnosing the fault, as £175 seems a lot.
  3. CharlieT

    CharlieT New Member

    The 1st companys engineer spent maximum 15 minutes without using any tools apart from a torch. Company in question is called ERG Facilities. The 2nd company who came attended 6 days later. As the first company gave me a quote of £1500 for parts and labour for pump replacement
    Last edited: Mar 29, 2021
  4. stevie22

    stevie22 Screwfix Select

    I'm an engineer not a plumber but I read between the lines that there was 6 days between the visits: why? Was the first man supposed to come and fix? How long was he in your house to run up that sort of coat or was he one of those Pimlico types? I'd have thought pump working /not working was pretty black and white so I think morally at least you should get a refund.
  5. CharlieT

    CharlieT New Member

    The first man came and gave a diagnosis and told me to wait for his company to give a quote for the pump replacement. Wasnt too happy with the quote of £1500 so that same day I looked elsewhere. The 2nd company wanted to do their own diagnosis and found that the pump was working and the issue was just a zone valve problem which is a fraction of the price to fix.
  6. AnotherTopJob

    AnotherTopJob Screwfix Select

    £175 is certainly expensive for a 15 minute call-out but I would imagine any company would charge an hour's labour.

    Was it an out-of-hours call-out and was any cost mentioned?
  7. CharlieT

    CharlieT New Member

    It was not an emergency callout, but they did send "their engineer" out the next day. They did mention the callout fee, but I was under the impression they would fix the issue. which I know now was just a jammed HW zone valve (S plan), but they diagnosed it as a faulty pump and thus another visit would be needed with a quote for the replacement
  8. jonathanc

    jonathanc Guest

    It will depend on the specifics of any communication with then. However I think the primary argument is that you paid them a fee to diagnose a fault and they failed to diagnose the fault so their service was of no value to you. I would argue the case and provided you have the evidence trail you might take it all the way to court if you have to
  9. AnotherTopJob

    AnotherTopJob Screwfix Select

    Sounds like a company to avoid! It's a shame you paid them.
    They provided a 'service' but it's clear this was not adequate or reliable so I would definitely be looking for a refund.
  10. CharlieT

    CharlieT New Member

    Carelessly did my research a little too late. The fact that they were on Rogue traders Show is already a red flag.
  11. CharlieT

    CharlieT New Member

    Pretty much, although the diagnosis was only found to be wrong when the 2nd engineer came and did their diagnosis.

    In terms of the 1st company's response, it does not seem like they will honour a refund as their own engineer is conveniently disputing it. I just needed some opinion on whether the case was strong enough to go all the way to small claims
  12. AnotherTopJob

    AnotherTopJob Screwfix Select

    As they've been on Rogue Traders and haven't changed their ways, they're probably not bothered by negative publicity or likely to offer a refund without going down the legal route.

    You've got solid evidence for a case, so I'd like to think you would win, although I'm not experienced in legal matters.

    A long shot, but maybe your bank or home insurance legal cover (if you have it) might help.
  13. furious_customer

    furious_customer Screwfix Select

    I would report them to trading standards, sounds like they are well known for this so it probably won't help you, but it might be another case on their TS file that will help to tip the balance for a prosecution one day.
  14. Astramax

    Astramax Super Member

    Hopefully you paid via a credit card.....if so claim it back from the card provider.;)
    jimbobby likes this.
  15. jonathanc

    jonathanc Guest

    the fact that someone else carrier out a different repair that fixed your problem is evidence enough that the original diagnosis was incorrect. Further proper diagnosis does not take 15 minutes with a torch

    my view is to pursue this up to and including small claims. I expect they’ll settle before court

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