When are defective vehicles considered lemons?

When a serious problem arises with a new car, many California consumers may wonder what to do. In some cases, the vehicle can be taken to a mechanic for repairs, and that is the end of the story. However, in other cases, individuals may have vehicles that continue to have problems even after multiple attempts at repairs. In which case, the vehicles may be considered lemons.

Of course, in order for a vehicle to be considered a lemon in the eyes of the law, it must fit certain criteria. First, it may have a substantial defect that negatively affects the vehicle's safety, use or value. The vehicle's warranty must also cover the defect. Additionally, the defect must have occurred within a certain time frame after purchase or within a certain number of miles.

If a person does find that his or her vehicle has a substantial defect, the manufacturer or dealer has the chance to attempt to repair the vehicle. However, only a certain number of attempts are allowed before the vehicle is considered a lemon. If the repairs do not fix the issue within four attempts, for example, some states consider that a reasonable number of attempts, and the vehicle may be considered a lemon.

If California drivers do wind up with lemons, they may feel the need to address the situation. By filing a lemon law claim, efforts could be made to receive a replacement vehicle or to get a refund. Of course, understanding such claims and the necessary steps for taking action can be difficult, and concerned consumers may want to speak with attorneys about this possible option.