UKC

/ Is there a legitimate explanation for this?

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girlymonkey - on 03 Jul 2018

Just over a month ago, we bought a van from someone on Gumtree. It had 93,000 miles on the clock and seemed ok. It had a few quirks, but priced reasonably cheaply for the mileage so happy to take it and sort out the quirks (things like key won't open driver door, so have to reach through from the back to open etc).

It was due it's MOT next month, so we put it in this week and got it back today. Nothing too major, a couple of things that we knew about and some work needed on brakes. Fine with that.

The odd bit, is when the MOT certificate came back, we noticed an odd blip in the mileage in 2015. So 2014 it had somewhere around 72,000, 2015 had 127,000 and then 2016 had 85,000. Is the only explanation for this that someone has tampered with the odometer, or could there be a genuine error on the system? Surely it's illegal to tamper with it, so it showing like this on MOT certificate every year should raise eyebrows?

I'm not sure I'm too bothered, as it seems to be doing ok for it's age anyway, and the others in the same price bracket had about £150,000 on the clock.

Any thoughts. This was all before the previous owner had it, so I don't think it's directly to do with him, although I'm sure he noticed it on his MOTs too.

no_more_scotch_eggs - on 03 Jul 2018
In reply to girlymonkey:

middle  reading could  be in kms - would be about 79000 in miles, which would fit

MarkJH - on 03 Jul 2018
In reply to girlymonkey:

55k miles averages out at 150 miles per day for a whole year.  That is a lot by anyone's standards and even with a few big trips would be hard to do.  Without knowing anything about the record keeping process, it does look like it must be an error.

wintertree - on 03 Jul 2018
In reply to girlymonkey:

I’m leaning towards a clerical error somewhere.  However...

Sometimes a random computer on the vehicle’s network keeps an independent odoometer reading.  On my car it’s the headlight controller.  If you can find the unit and talk to it over the ODB port you can spot less competent clocking jobs that have only zapped or replaced the odometer unit.  

If you’re happy to let it go if it is really clocked, do however check your timing belt replacement interval if appropriate...

1
Alasdair Fulton - on 03 Jul 2018
In reply to girlymonkey:

Either way, assume it's the latter and make sure you have done all the correct maintenance!  Don't want a timing belt or water pump breaking on you. 

girlymonkey - on 04 Jul 2018
In reply to no_more_scotch_eggs:

That would certainly fit. Is that something that happens easily?

girlymonkey - on 04 Jul 2018
In reply to MarkJH:

Yes, I thought it seemed an unlikely jump. Also, if you were going to clock the van, it would seem odd to make it so obvious.

girlymonkey - on 04 Jul 2018
In reply to Alasdair Fulton:

Timing belt was done at 70k, so maybe due another if it has been clocked. General condition seems ok, so I am more inclined towards clerical error

no_more_scotch_eggs - on 04 Jul 2018
In reply to girlymonkey:

If someone fiddles with the settings and then the garage don’t notice the units have changed. yes, it happened to us...

Siward on 04 Jul 2018
In reply to girlymonkey:

Are there any invoices, other than MOTs, where a garage has jotted down the mileage somewhere?

Country_Boy - on 04 Jul 2018
In reply to girlymonkey:

I've seen a similar thing on the MOT Certs for one of my vehicles;  can't remember the details, but there was a clear discrepancy between the mileages shown on the Certs over three years.  I had owned the vehicle for the entire period and I have no idea how to tamper with the odometer, so my conclusion was finger trouble by the MOT tester (and presumably nobody sanity checks these numbers).

GrahamD - on 04 Jul 2018
In reply to girlymonkey:

As mentioned above, it could be a km reading.  How easy is it to swap the odometer reading to km ? in my car its dead easy and I usually leave it set in km.

NottsRich on 09 Jul 2018
In reply to girlymonkey:

There are legitimate reasons for changing the dash/instrument cluster with a second hand one, like something is broken. This would then cause the mileage from then on to be incorrect, as you are not allowed to modify the replacemnt odometer to show the known correct mileage, ironically.

Rigid Raider - on 09 Jul 2018
In reply to girlymonkey:

If it was a Land Rover I would say that's completely normal because changing the instrument pod takes just a few minutes and requires undong only a couple of screws. It's especially normal with ex-MOD vehicles. I don't know how easy it would be with your van though.

Andrew Kin - on 09 Jul 2018
In reply to girlymonkey:

Having worked in the commercial motor trade for over 20yrs I would say err on the side of dishonesty.  Its not often a simple mistake like that is made and if it is, it is usually picked up quickly and the responsibility of the current owner to put right or document.  If they, or you brought that vehicle into me I would value it as scrap.  Just not worth the bother.  But as you got it for a good price, make sure its safe and running ok and get your monies worth of use.

I see it quite often, new engines, new speedos etc etc.  If it hasn't been discussed or pointed out then chances are its done the higher mileage and you need to ensure it has had its belts done accordingly (Again, I wouldn't trust anyone telling me, invoices would be the only thing I would trust).  Just a quick point, if you ask the seller if it is genuine mileage and they know it isn't then they are duty bound to answer honestly.  Same as you are if you come to sell it.

Mooncat - on 09 Jul 2018
In reply to girlymonkey:

Check if the 2015 mileage is the same as the chassis number, I've seen this happen more than once. FWIR the MOT tester only has 4 weeks after the test to change an incorrect mileage even if it's spotted.

steve taylor - on 09 Jul 2018
In reply to girlymonkey:

I was looking to buy a car several years ago. The paper work showed 83,000 miles, but I rang the DVLA (or something like that) to do a mileage check from the last change of owner, and it had been clocked by over 60,000 miles by either the previous owner or the current seller.

Can't you go back to the person you bought it from to get an explanation?

In my example, the car actually drove perfectly and it was only a stop-gap car at the time. I adjusted my offer down quite a lot, and the seller capitulated immediately - he must have had a guilty conscience.

The car ran for a few years afterwards with no issues at all. 

 

Ridge - on 09 Jul 2018
In reply to girlymonkey:

Also worth noting post 2005 MOTs can be checked on line. As well as checking mileage you can check what sort of state of disrepair the owner lets it get into between MOTs.

https://www.gov.uk/check-mot-history

jkarran - on 09 Jul 2018
In reply to girlymonkey:

Nobody brazen enough to knock 45,000 miles off in one hit would be stupid enough to leave the MoT paperwork in the file showing it. If it was doing 7000/year as it appears that's almost certainly just a kilometre odometer reading that hasn't been spotted/converted. If the glitch doesn't coincide with a couple of quick changes of ownership I'd upgrade that almost certainly to certainly.

jk

galpinos on 09 Jul 2018
In reply to girlymonkey:

What van is it?

 

Phil79 - on 09 Jul 2018
In reply to NottsRich:

> There are legitimate reasons for changing the dash/instrument cluster with a second hand one, like something is broken. This would then cause the mileage from then on to be incorrect, as you are not allowed to modify the replacemnt odometer to show the known correct mileage, ironically.

I had exactly this with a focus I had some years back. Instrument cluster changed to second hand unit after continued electrical fault with the original. I spoke to Ford dealer and they wanted silly money to replace with genuine spare and set mileage as per existing one, so I got it done on the cheap. Knocked 50K miles off the clock!!

I eventually sold it for scrap, but it always seemed like a right con to me, as you could clearly clock a car if you had handy supply of the right spare parts.


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