The BL "Standard Squeak"

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Sir,

I write to inform you of “The British Leyland standard squeak” which I am sure you will be interested to hear about.

My epic started on April 15th, 1981 when my August 1976 MG Midget Mk. 3 motor car went into my local garage for a 33,000 mile service. As well as receiving a service I reported a strange squeaking sound coming from the rear of my car. The sound was repaired and my car returned. In May 1981 the noise re-appeared and my car was returned to the garage, whereupon the car was oiled and greased. Upon the return of my car the noise persisted.

The car was again returned for inspection and the noise was traced to the rear near side shock absorber. A new shock absorber was ordered from the “Unipart” parts department in Glasgow. A few weeks later the car was returned to the garage and a new shock absorber was fitted. The car still squeaked. The car was again returned to the garage and the fault was traced to the new shock absorber. Another shock absorber was sent for. In July the second shock absorber arrived and was fitted to my car. Upon my receiving the car to my horror I found it still squeaked.

The car was returned and the new shock absorber was diagnosed faulty.

The garage telephoned the “Unipart” suppliers in Glasgow and informed them of my dilemma. The garage was informed that the squeak was “standard.”

The garage being unhappy with the reply asked if anything could be done. “Unipart” repeated “it’s a standard squeak”. The garage therefore arranged to see the “Unipart” consultant on his next visit with my MG.

Upon his arrival in August the consultant announced that there was no need to see the vehicle as this infuriating noise was .standard”. In one last vain effort the garage phoned the BL service department at Cowley who replied with the words, “it’s standard”.

To conclude I now owe the garage £45 and I will have the original fault, however my garage will not charge me for the “Unipart” shock absorber as it will be returned as soon as the Japanese replacement which has been ordered is fitted.

I am now wondering if other MG owners have experienced “the standard squeak” or is it a “BL hush-up job.”

Hawick, Tyneside CLIVE PURNIS