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The Ledbetter Law Firm, APC

Los Angeles, California, Lemon Law Blog

Gather proof for your Lemon Law complaint

California's Lemon Law offers an important protection for consumers who are purchasing a new vehicle, and in limited cases, a used vehicle. The law has specific criteria for vehicles that have these protections. It is imperative that any consumer who is going to purchase a vehicle understands whether their vehicle qualifies or not.

When you buy a vehicle, you should pay close attention to how it is performing. If you notice any problems, have them addressed quickly. This gives you a chance to resolve them before they get worse. Plus, you might miss your chance to file a Lemon Law claim if your case meets the criteria for one.

An extended warranty may be worth it if a vehicle is a lemon

A lot of decisions are involved in buying a new car. California residents may think about safety features, looks, gas mileage and much more when deciding which vehicle is right for them. They may also need to decide whether to opt for an extended warranty, which can cost extra. However, having a warranty may save some headaches later, especially if a car turns out to be a lemon.

Unfortunately, as nice and shiny as a new car may be, sooner or later something will go wrong. Vehicle owners can mitigate the chances of major issues by keeping their vehicles properly maintained and having any concerns checked by the dealership or mechanic as soon as possible. Because getting any type of vehicle problem fixed can be costly, having an extended warranty may help lessen those costs.

New vehicle issues may have some considering lemon law claims

Many vehicle owners dread hearing a strange noise coming from their vehicle or experiencing a jolting movement as something does not work correctly. While most drivers and vehicle owners are no stranger to the occasional auto issue, it can be frustrating when the problems occur soon after purchase and persist. In some cases, issues may have vehicle owners considering lemon law claims.

When it comes to making a lemon law claim, the vehicle must have been sold or leased in California to make a claim in the state. The laws cover vehicles that have a new vehicle warranty and that have been purchased within the last 18 months or that have less than 18,000 miles. If the automakers make a reasonable number of repair attempts but the vehicle still does not work, the vehicle must be replaced or bought back.

Multiple Nissan models pose serious hazard of catching fire

Most California residents do not consider owning a car as something that is necessarily dangerous. However, if vehicles have defects or develop issues that could cause the vehicles to work improperly, it could put drivers and passengers at risk. In some cases, individuals may even be advised not to drive those vehicles until the serious hazard is resolved.

It was recently reported that Nissan has issued a recall that is affecting approximately 400,000 vehicles across the United States. Apparently, a defect in the braking system could result in a pump seal getting worn down, which could, in turn, cause brake fluid to leak. If the fluid does leak, an electrical short could take place that could then lead to a fire. If the anti-lock brake warning light comes on for more than 10 seconds, drivers are advised to park the vehicles outside and away from other structures.

Defective repairs after vehicle recall can frustrate consumers

When a consumer purchases a new vehicle, the expectation is that the car will provide reliable transportation with no mechanical glitches. Warranties allow a consumer to return a vehicle for repairs if there is a problem, and a vehicle recall may address more universal defects. However, what happens when the recall repair creates an even more serious problem? Vehicle owners in California and elsewhere are finding out the hard way.

Last year, Toyota and Subaru recalled 400,000 vehicles to repair a spring valve that was vulnerable to fracturing. This resulted in vehicles stalling. While only 11 vehicle owners reported this problem in the space of three years, the carmakers issued a repair for the spring valve. However, the new valve seems to be causing even more trouble for car owners.

Certain GM models suffer from defects affecting braking

Having a reliable vehicle can make a considerable difference in any California resident's life. Because most people's vehicles are immensely important to them, they often try to choose newer models that hopefully will not have any problems, at least for some time. Unfortunately, some newer vehicles could suffer from defects that could put travelers, and their investments, at risk.

It was recently reported that General Motors Co. has issued a recall due to a problem with certain SUVs and pickup trucks. Apparently, 638,000 vehicles in the United States are affected by the recall, which was issued due to a problem with a wheel-speed sensor. The sensor could stop working properly, and as a result, one of the wheels on the vehicle could brake unexpectedly.

What is covered by the California lemon law?

Lemon laws across the country protect consumers who purchase a vehicle that has a flaw or defect that the manufacturer or dealer cannot repair. Each state's laws are different but generally cover new vehicles purchased within the state. The California lemon law covers new vehicles, including motor homes and commercial vehicles, but not motorcycles or off-road vehicles. In some cases, the law may cover a used car that is still under a manufacturer's warranty.

The law defines the issues it covers as vehicle malfunctions or defects that prevent the owner from using the vehicle that is still under warranty. The owner may be unable to use the vehicle because it will not run or is unsafe to drive. Even if the vehicle does run, a consumer may invoke the lemon law if the defect considerably affects the value of the vehicle.

Problems with their vehicles do not prevent retailer sales

Buying a vehicle is not a small step. Often, there are a number of considerations when making such a significant purchase, including which dealership to buy from. Even if one retailer seems reputable, California residents could still run into problems with their vehicles.

It was recently reported that the largest car retailer in the country has been selling vehicles with defects. AutoNation reportedly puts vehicles on the market that have been recalled due to issues, and it continues to sell the vehicles even though the defects have not been repaired. A report looked into more than 2,400 vehicles sold from various AutoNation retailers across the country and found that one out of every nine vehicles sold from the retailer had defects.

Vehicle defect in braking systems concerning for drivers

New vehicles promise improved safety through the addition of many high-tech features. In fact, advanced safety features are among the top reasons why consumers purchase new vehicles. However, some safety advocates wonder if these features may create more danger, especially if they do not work properly. A prime example is the Nissan Rogue's automatic emergency braking system. California drivers of these vehicles may learn of this vehicle defect at the worst possible moment.

Several high profile news stories revealed that AEB systems can fail to activate, resulting in deadly collisions, as occurred with the Tesla automated vehicle. The difference between avoiding a collision and suffering catastrophic injuries can be a fraction of a second, so defective AEB systems are certainly something to cause alarm. In the past year, over 800 consumers have filed complaints about a defect in the AEB systems of their Nissan Rogues.

Vehicle wear occurring early or often can cause serious problems

All vehicles experience issues at some point. In many cases, the problems could be fixed with routine maintenance, such as getting new brake pads, but some California vehicle owners may feel that their vehicles are showing problems too soon or too often. Unfortunately, early or often wear could point to serious problems.

As mentioned, one issue that vehicle owners often need to contend with is getting their brakes changed. However, certain defects with a vehicle could result in the brakes wearing more quickly than anticipated. If an owner ends up replacing brakes too often, it is wise to have the vehicle checked for defects or other issues that may need to be addressed by the dealership or manufacturer.

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