Watchdog Investigate RAC Battery 30th November 2016

The RAC have been investigated by the BBC’s consumer program “Watchdog”, when several viewers wrote in claiming that they had been sold car batteries from non starting call outs when the future tests or information suggests they did not need to be replaced. Some customers had even received a report to suggest their previous battery was in a good state of health and one customer kept the old battery for testing afterwards, which was then deemed as good. These RAC members wanted to know why they had been batteries they did not feel they needed.

Watchdog V RAC batteries

Watchdog took 10 separate vehicles and pre-tested the quality of the batteries fixed to them, using experts in their field. They then deliberately discharged the batteries and then made called out the RAC for each of the 10 vehicles. As far as the experts were concerned, in order to get running again, all these batteries needed was a jump start and a little while to recharge.

Of the 10 RAC call outs 2 patrolmen, did just that, used a booster to start the vehicle and then waited a few minutes to recharge the battery. One was filmed, stating that by the time the member got home, it would be fine, they just had to run to constantly until then. However the other 8 patrolmen, stated that the batteries needed replacing and quoted for a replacement. All these batteries were detained by the members to be re-tested and in all cases an expert said there was nothing wrong with them. Most members were given the option of driving on and buying elsewhere, they were warned of the risk of doing so. Some even mentioned a £85 call out charge should they need to re-visit the vehicle.

When contacting the RAC and asked the question, “How that 8 out of the 10 batteries deemed as good by their experts had been rejected by the RAC” they responded stating that they used the latest in testing equipment that no-one else used. Watch below about the RAC Advanced Battery Tester. They also stated they were not selling any batteries than they were used too.

A Key Question Not Asked

The patrolmen themselves, what do they gain from selling new replacements? And the answer is nothing, they are merely taking action from the equipment in front of them.

So the bigger question, is whether this new more advanced tester indicate the failure of the battery before any other check experts would make, is this too premature?

As it stands, no information has been released suggesting that the RAC will change their testing equipment, or give different advice on call outs.

The 120 Year History Of The RAC

The RAC used to stand for the “Royal Automobile Club” and many still think it stands for this. But the recovery service and insurance sector separated from the automobile club, many years ago. In fact the Royal Automobile Club still exists in Pall Mall London. The RAC as it stands now, is an insurance company and recovery service. It does however invest in road safety issues.

Full story BBC http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/articles/517yjLSb1kShHrr7pV2f8mr/rac