New data released by Motorcheck.ie sees 400% surge in ‘car clocking’. 

Data available at www.motorcheck.ie/stats


Speaking ahead of RTE’s 1 Buyer Beware programme on Wednesday the 18th at 8:30pm,  Shane Teskey of Motorcheck.ie highlights the massive increase in car clocking (tampering with the mileage of a car). 
Releasing data ahead of the programme, the Motorocheck statistics show car clocking has gone up at least 400% since March. In episode two, Philip explores the pitfalls consumers can encounter when buying a used car. He exposes the sophisticated manner in which cars are ‘clocked’ and ‘cloned’, how easily these cars move around the Irish market undetected, and learns what to look out for to avoid ending up with a ‘hot’ car in your possession

Commenting on this, Teskey said:

“In the past 9 months the number of mileage discrepancies identified by the Motorcheck database has risen by 400% from March 2009 to today’s date. We believe poor sales in the new car market as well as attractive second hand options from abroad have meant that the Irish motor industry is finding the current recession very difficult to survive.  There is always going to be a degree of car clocking by unscrupulous sellers but the numbers for 2009 are just staggering and we fear that even some car dealers are now utilising this dangerous practice.

 In the programme to be aired Wednesday the 18th at 8:30pm on RTE1 Shane Teskey helps journalist Philip Boucher Hayes of RTÉ’s Investigative Unit find out the real story behind some cars that have recently appeared on the Irish market. 

Clocking a car can be lethal:

The real danger associated with a clocked car is not the modified odometer but the false impression a prospective buyer may have of the vehicles mechanical condition. Interfering with a vehicles ECU (Engine Control Unit) can lead to malfunctions with other vital safety equipment. Problems that the the new owner may not be aware of until it’s too late and an accident is caused. 

Teskey also gives simple advice for all buyers and sellers to ensure a safer purchase: 

Top Ways to Avoid a Clocked Car

      • Compare the vehicle’s current odometer reading against the Irish National Mileage Register at Motorcheck.ie

      • Ensure that the vehicle has a fully documented service history. Phone the garage/s that stamped the book and verify the odometer recorded at the time the work was carried out.

      • Ask for previous NCT records if available from the owner. The mileage reading taken at the test should be evident on the results.

      • If the vehicle doesn’t have a service history look around the interior. You’d be surprised at what you might find. Some service garages put stickers on the inside top right of the windscreen to indicate – “next service due at” – look for these stickers and call the garage detailed. If you find evidence that a sticker was previously there and has since been removed – be cautious!

      • Check the badge in the rear windscreen for a dealer logo or sometimes you’ll find out who has worked on the car by looking a the rear number plate. A lot of garages put ‘Number plate surrounds’ on the actual number plate to advertise their business. Any clues as to who’s been maintaining the car are invaluable and need to be confirmed.

      • High mileage generally leaves a number of physical indicators. Look for wear on the gear stick and steering wheel. Lower mileage cars (>50k) should have very little wear. On higher mileage vehicles you would expect to see a smoothing/shining effect on the plastic or leather due to usage.  If the clock is the old style cylindrical shaped dials (Non-digital), make sure all of the numbers line up in a straight horizontal line. With clocked vehicles sometimes these dials go slightly off centre. For digital clocks a diagnostic check of the vehicle engine control unit (ECU) could indicate if the mileage has been reprogrammed (this is part of the Motorcheck pre-purchase inspection).

      • Look for excessive wear on the carpets, mats and pedals. If there are new carpet mats look under the mats for wear on the original carpet. Under the bonnet – look for a “greasy” or “creamy like” substance under the water cap (this is the cover on the radiator / expansion bottle) could indicate that the head gasket is failing. This would be common on cars with high mileage. 

Motorcheck’s Irish National Mileage Register can be accessed by anyone carrying out a car history check on the revamped Motorcheck.ie website. The site now includes car history data for vehicles registered in the UK and Northern Ireland as well as Irish registered vehicles that have been previously imported from the UK thereby providing car buyers with comprehensive vehicle information from both sides of the Irish Sea. 

For further information on identifying a clocked car go to www.motorcheck.ie/stats

Driving instuctors under scrutiny

The Road Safety Authority has found one reason why so many people have been failing the driving test.

They found that many driving instructors did not know the theory or the practice of driving.

Noel Brett, CEO of the RSA, said 26% of driving instructors had failed the theory test, while 20% had failed the practical test.

Instructors had to undergo a test set by the RSA, as all instructors have to be registered by that body.

To illustrate the size of the problem with road safety, he said that since 1980 a total of 13,002 people had died on the roads.

He said this is four times the number killed in the Northern Ireland troubles.

He suggested that on present trends, 75 to 80 more people will die on the roads between now and the end of the year.

Hundreds of bicycles will be available on the streets of Dublin

Dublin bicycle scheme launcheddublin_bicycles

Hundreds of bicycles will be available on the streets of Dublin from today 13th Sept. 2009.

The initiative has been organised by Dublin City Council in conjunction with a French advertising giant who will fund the operation in return for advertising space.

The 450 silver unisex bicycles are being made available for use by the public at 40 locations from the Mater Hospital in the North of the city to Grand Canal Street in the South.

The scheme is designed to encourage cycling and to help people move around the city streets quickly.

A short journey lasting a half an hour is free but six hours costs €4.50 and its €2 for every half an hour after that.

Would be cyclists also need to leave €150 deposit using either a credit card or a bank draft, which will be used if the bike is not returned.

The scheme is similar to the one that has been operating in Paris, Copenhagen and 16 other cities.

Renault Megane Coupe/Cabriolet Airbag Unit Location

If you ever find yourself in the position where it requires to remove the airbag unit on Renault Megane Coupe / Cabriolet, than brace yourself as you’ll be looking for the little f***** all day, but not anymore as I did  the hard work and found it for you.

The unit is located under the center console (between the front seats) behind the gearstick.

Remove the center console, cut the carpet in the middle just behind the gearstick lever, lift up the foam below the carpet and voila, the unit is there cover with a black plastic panel.

Lift up the black panel by hand, and using a 10 socket remove the 3 screws that holds the unit in place.
Remove the small black plug, then slowly find the grey locking clip for the large connector and pull it to the side, unlocking the plug itself.

Now send it down for whatever you need it for…..

National roads reclassified as motorways

Sections of ten national roads will today be designated as new motorways.

The Department of Transport made the changes following a recommendation from the National Roads Authority.

Minister for Transport Noel Dempsey said: ‘The purpose of this move is to enhance and protect the national motorway network.’

The speed limits on these roads will be increased from 100 to 120km/ph, which will mean that learner drivers, certain types of agricultural vehicles and motorbikes will be banned.

Motorway status will be applied to 294km of national roads.

The sections reclassified include the N2 between Kilshane and Ashbourne, the N4 between Kinnegad and McNead’s Bridge and the N6 between Athlone and Galway.

Parts of the N3, N8, N9, N11, N18 and N20 are also covered, along with the Limerick Southern Ring Road.

Some of the roads involved are still under construction.

Conor Faughnan of AA Roadwatch says the change is a good thing and that it will make the roads safer as certain classes of vehicle cannot go on them.

Casey and Sons – 60 jobs lost at car dealership

At least 60 jobs have been lost after the closure of a car dealership in the midlands.

Management at Peter Casey and Sons made an application to the court yesterday for the appointment of a receiver after going into voluntary liquidation.

Workers learned of the liquidation late last night.

The firm has garages in Roscommon town, Athlone and Carrick-on-Shannon.

Dozens of cars have been removed on transporters from the three garages this morning.

Casey and Sons is one of the best known and most successful Ford dealerships in the country.

The firm was set up in 1925 and also sold Kia, Volvo and Honda cars.

Tips for selling your used car faster

If you’ve got a car for sale you’re more than likely very eager to move it as fast as humanly possible.
It may even not only be a want , but a need!
You may need the cash for other pressing needs, so here are several tips to help you get that vehicle out of your name and cash into your pocket ASAP!

Clean it up! – Make sure you present you car in the best condition you can.
Take some time to detail it before you list it, as you don’t want the first people who look (who are often your best prospects: they’re actively looking!) to be put off simply because you haven’t gotten around to it.

Post great pictures – If you list it online or take out a print ad, insert the best photographs you can.
A good picture can often make the difference in whether someone even comes to take a look.

Be honest – Tell the truth about the car’s condition.
Nothing will sour a deal faster than having them discover it on their own.

Have the paperwork at hand – Don’t try and sell it without proper paperwork.
This smells like you’re hiding something at the very least, and makes you look pretty lame.

Emphasize the benefits – Make sure to highlight how your vehicle can help them.
It may be the perfect soccer mom-mobile, delivery truck, chick magnet, whatever.
You need to size up your potential buyer and see what their needs are, and try and fill them!

Price it right! – Determine a fair market price, and then add a bit for haggling purposes.
Know in your mind what you’ll accept and what you won’t, and stick to it.

These tips will give your car the best chance to be seen and purchased by someone for the best price you can get for it – and fast!
Good Luck with your ad.