How much should a new heater matrix cost?

I had a coolant leak from the heater matrix on my Ford Focus and was informed it required replacement by our local Dealer who had serviced the car from new. I was interested in what had happened and asked for the old matrix to be returned to me, when I tested it the leak was not from the matrix but from the supply pipe seal and clip. The bill was just short of £1000 to replace the matrix, a completely new matrix was fitted, when questioned why a new seal was not fitted, the dealer said Ford had redesigned the matrix removing the weak point of the seal and clips, and they no longer supplied the seals. I feel that Ford realised that there was a weak point in their design and have removed it from the Focus range but left owners like me to pick up the bill when a seal fails. To pick up a bill for £1000 for a 10 pence seal failure for a car less than five years old is in my opinion totally unfair. What do you think?
Have a look at the invoice. I think you will find that most of the cost is for the labour of removal and replacement of the heater matrix, which is a fiddly and difficult job. If so, you would probably have still incurred the labour charge just to replace the union seals and clips, but, as you say, the car was less than six years old so you can take it up with the supplying dealer. Along with the BMW E90 3-Series, the 2011-2014 Focus is the joint 2nd most complained of car.
Answered by Honest John on

Ask Honest John