Lemons are frustrating, and in some cases, dangerous to drive.
A lemon most commonly refers to new cars with a substantial defect that is not fixable even after a reasonable number of repair attempts. Every state in the country has its own lemon laws that protect consumers from lemons. Federal law also provides additional protection by detailing guidelines for coverage by the manufacturer’s warranty. The BIG catch, however, is that the burden of proof is on the owner of the lemon to prove that the car qualifies for replacement or a refund.
How to Make Lemonade from a Lemon
Most lemon laws state that buyers are entitled to a remedy if their cars are out of service for an extended number of days due to failure or serviced over extended periods for the same problem. These laws vary by state and by the nature of the repairs covered. Some problems are obvious, like the car not starting, power loss or transmission failure, while others fall into a gray area, such as wind noise, fluid leaks and excessive tire wear. Because of this, remedies can vary greatly in lemon law cases, from full car replacement or repurchase by the manufacturer to small monetary awards to compensate for a minor issue that does not affect driver safety.
Here are the steps you should take if you think you might be the proud owner of a brand new, bright yellow lemon . . .