How Many Times Should You Repair Your Ailing Car?

After a short while experiencing significant problems with your car, you probably feel you have bought a lemon. However, the manufacturer of your vehicle might not think so. Perhaps you just need to take it to the right auto repair shop. You might feel, however, that you have tried enough times to get your car working and that it is time to turn it in.

California’s lemon law does want you to make a good faith effort to try to fix your automobile. Problems with cars happen all the time, of course. That is why the state lemon law requires people to make a reasonable number of repair attempts before the state qualifies a car as a lemon.

Repair attempts specified by law

California lemon law does not specify exactly how many times you should try to have your car repaired. This might seem frustrating at first. Still, you should consider that automobiles may experience technical problems for all sorts of reasons. California’s lemon law recognizes that fact and lays down some general guidelines for repair attempts that may apply in your case.

Manufacturer repair attempts

If you take your car to a manufacturer or a representative agent, the state lemon law grants a number of repair attempts before it considers your vehicle a lemon. If your car has a recurring issue covered by warranty, your manufacturer has at least four tries before your vehicle may qualify as a lemon. If your vehicle defects put you at risk of injury or death, the state lemon law gives your manufacturer just two repair attempts before you may try to turn in your car as a lemon.

Other repair attempts

If you are unable to drive your vehicle for 30 days during a time when you have your car at a repair shop, your vehicle might qualify as a lemon. The problems with your vehicle must qualify as one of the following:

  • A warranty covers the problems
  • The defects significantly reduce the use or value of the vehicle
  • The defects diminish your safety while driving
  • The vehicle defects must not result from owner abuse

It can be frustrating when the law does not seem clear on how many times you should try to fix your car. Still, if you feel you have a strong case that you bought a lemon, you should know that you can present your arguments before an arbitrator who may decide in your favor.