Engine went down any suggestions? (Final Musings) - Page 4 - GM Forum - Buick, Cadillac, Chev, Olds, GMC & Pontiac chat


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Old 11-26-2006, 07:56 PM   #31
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About the perfect storm and being down to one car, I think this is a golden opportunity for you to rent a car, and include the costs of that in your small claims court action against the Saturn dealer. I know it'* adding just another layer of "trying to get Saturn to pay for something" but since I think you're going to ultimately win this one, if it were me, I'd be renting a car. If Saturn had fixed your car the first time, or second time, or third? time, you wouldn't need to rent a car. Even if their warranty doesn't cover rental or loaner cars, their incompetence at fixing an engine is leaving you with few options.

From the sounds of how your progress is going, I keep stressing small claims court because I think that'* the only way you're going to get this taken care of the way it should have been taken care of. I think your Saturn dealer is probably going to just be even more hostile when confronted with a real estimate for repairs. -They just don't sound like reasonable people. Fortunately, small claims courts enjoy making unreasonable and incompentent companies make good on their promises, which is why I think that'* going to be the best way to solve this, unless they just cave in and pay for everything right away.

Typically it won't even get to small claims court, once they get served notice, they hand the matter over to their attorney who calls you and offers to pay you what you're asking for. Don't drop the case until you have their check in your bank account. Small claims court is really easy and *really* effective.
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Old 11-27-2006, 08:19 PM   #32
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Default Second opinion is in

Update... I'm not a mechanic, but I'm a member at the BC (and i stayed at a Holiday Inn Express).

Second opinion came in at noon today from the Pontiac dealer. I did not tell them a thing besides i got the miss, the CE light etc, pulled off the road and saw my coolant was missing and I didn't see any in the bay. Please diagnose.

"Customer states, coolant loss, no visible leaks, car started to miss while driving.

Checked cooling system. found system low on coolant. Filled and tested for leaks. found lower and upper intake manifold due to manifold corroded and sealing surface gaskets leaking. Need to replace lower intake manifold gaskets and upper intake manifold. Also replace spark plugs due to being fouled by coolant."

It was if we had written it (our grammar might have been a touch better). The coup de gras was the plugs. All I could think of was me standing with the photo of the plug and the Saturn mechanic telling me all plugs look like that.

I then gave the Pontiac service mgr the whole story. His words were "obvious" and "nobrainer" regarding the problem.

Called Saturn and they took the "bring it to us and we'll see if it'* true" stance. No big surprise.

So the Bonne is now in the clutches of the evil Saturn of the Valley. I swear it'* personal with them. The service mgr looked like he was taking castor oil while he put the service request in the computer. Not his usual talkative self. He actually has a touch of the realistic in him, but was on vacation last week. I'll never know if he'* straight-up, because this has moved above him.

Wouldn't suprise me if they refuse to fix it, or only part of it. If they refuse, that'* easy. We're in court. If, say, they only consent to the uppers, I think I'll have to let them do it under written protest. Then do the lower myself. Or have Pontiac do it, and take Saturn to court for that. ... And we haven't even gotten to other possible consequences to the engine from this 2nd total failure.

Tomorrow will tell.

Thought y'all would like to know. Thanks for the helpful advice.
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Old 11-27-2006, 09:25 PM   #33
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This is essentially perfect news! The best part about it, is that the cost for this type of thing easily falls within the limits of small claims court, and you will simply win, win, win, win, win if you simply go that route. Seriously, go online to your local area'* courts online and get the full scoop on how to file a small claim. It usually costs you less than $35. I would so TOTALLY be ready to file a claim for the costs of towing to the Pontiac dealer, the cost of their diagnosis work for your estimate, the costs of a rental car, and the full costs of repair for everything the Pontiac dealer wrote up for the repairs. ALSO, be aware that the process usually also involves a new thermostat and an oil and filter change. Get those paid for too. Everything that should be done in that repair should be covered by law in your Saturn warranty.

Legally, your Saturn dealer who sold you the warranty should swallow and say "Sorry for misdiagnosing this, we'll fix this right away and get you back on the road." -Anything less and they just aren't abiding by their warranty. And that'* where small claims will simply hand you everything you were supposed to get with that warranty. You have solid evidence that the Saturn dealership can't diagnose their way out of a paper bag, much less reason for you to trust their service department. If the Saturn dealer does anything other than offer to totally repair the entire problem, you should just go directly to small claims court without passing Go or collecting $200, and file a claim for ALL the costs this has cost you, including a rental car (which you should go get) and costs for towing everywhere.

I'm SO glad that Pontiac took good care of you! Now let us know what Saturn does! I'll dig up my receipts and work order from when my Pontiac dealer just did my upper and lower intakes last December. There'* a lot of incidental charges for things like spark plugs, oil change, coolant, thermostat, and stuff like that. The stupidest thing about this is that you have a warranty. This must be a dealer-warranty and not a warranty sold by some warranty company that essentially acts like insurance, because if it was the latter, your shop would just fix it and bill the warranty company. This should be kind of a good warning story for others about dealer-only warranties; the dealer has a vested interest in fixing as little as possible, so you have to be at the top of your game.
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Old 11-27-2006, 09:57 PM   #34
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those saturn dealerships
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Old 11-27-2006, 11:43 PM   #35
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It certainly is an indictment of dealer-only warranties. "Saturn of the Valley.... 6 month - 6,000 mile... Comprehensive Warranty Program". "Zero Deductible... covers nearly every part on your "Saturn of the Valley" used vehicle. Then it goes on for 4 pages, engine down to door handles and gauges and mirror light. In PA, there is a tremendous legal distinction between "Comprehensive" and "Limited".

That'* why i bought into the car. It had very few miles on it over the past two years. I knew there would be "flat-bearing" types of problems from such little use. And there were a few sensor, start-up, etc problems. But for the past few months, it really started to rock. Great readings for the few I get on my scantool. 1500 mile highspeed trip just cleaned her out. She was breathing and firing beautifully. Then this BS at the end of the warranty. The salesman had "claimed" they had also done the intakes when they got the car because they thought there was a problem. I wasn't going to believe him and was waiting restlessly to get past the warranty so I could put on an aluminum LIM and Dorman plenum.

The Pontiac guy was great. Seriously, I gave him bare facts and that'* it. I wanted as neutral opinion as I could get from a dealer. He comes back with a grand slam. He gave me a written estimate for @ $750. It didn't itemize, so thermostat and oil change would probably add. I want to put in the drilled 180 as soon as it goes off warranty anyway.

We'll see tomorrow. I have to run and check for court filing, some Magnuson-Moss, and see if there is a GM FSB out there on the intake failure.

Thanks. And I'll post the crucial update tomorrow.
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Old 11-28-2006, 12:13 AM   #36
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Incredible.... simply incredible. Glad you got the verification you needed.
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Old 11-28-2006, 02:07 PM   #37
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Just a bit of reflection on this, all are just my opinions and thoughts:

Your Saturn dealership either:
(1) Has the single most incompetent service department in the known history of the universe,
or
(2) Knew right away that your problem was the intake and manifold gaskets, and knew that the cost for them to fix it properly would exceed the profit they made selling you the car. Knowing they were 200 miles away from not being responsible, they chose to replace any quickie bolt-on thing within sight, and limp yoru car outside of their warranty.

It'* really a toss-up which one it is, and I doubt that they're ever going to level with you and tell you "Y'know, our service guys really are that stupid." or "Sorry we railroaded you there for a while, we were hoping to get you out of warranty."

It must be difficult for a business to realize they're going to eat it on one of their sales. I suspect you aren't the first customer they've taken a loss on, and you probably won't be the last. But as you can see, they're going to fight like hell to keep as much money in their pockets as they can, -and so should you! Dishonesty and lack of integrity in a business is no reason you or I should have to pay for someone else'* responsibility.

I recall another thread in this group where someone was roaring mad because they bought a used Bonneville with no warranty and shortly thereafter had the manifold failures. I told them to suck it up, that'* what you agree to when you buy a used car without a warranty. You agree that after you drive it off the lot, anything that goes wrong with it is your responsibility.

But your Saturn dealer gave you their comprehensive warranty. And you've discovered their dirty little secret: They don't play fair. And you don't have to sit there and take it. Small claims court is a wonderful thing for contract enforcement. Your Saturn dealer should be ashamed at their incompetence, if that'* what it is. I'm betting they're simply dishonest, and that'* even worse in my book.
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Old 11-28-2006, 06:52 PM   #38
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And if they continue to give you the run around, I'd go public with it using the local news channel'* investigative reporters.
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Old 11-29-2006, 12:38 AM   #39
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bugsi
Just a bit of reflection on this, all are just my opinions and thoughts:

Your Saturn dealership either:
(1) Has the single most incompetent service department in the known history of the universe,
or
(2) Knew right away that your problem was the intake and manifold gaskets, and knew that the cost for them to fix it properly would exceed the profit they made selling you the car. Knowing they were 200 miles away from not being responsible, they chose to replace any quickie bolt-on thing within sight, and limp yoru car outside of their warranty.
My op-ed on this..... it'* a little bit of both, but it is mainly the culture there. It looks like the Saturn business model, but is being subverted by the employees. That is almost always a result of the fact that the ownership/management doesn't "get it".

I got a glimpse of it last Wed when I showed up to try to convince these people that it was in both of our interests to really check the intakes. The fill-in service mgr was a young woman. There is only one other woman in the building and she is a receptionist. This young woman is working with the "men" so she was doing "it" extra strong to compensate. What is "it"?

I'm always right. And I always win..... or I am weak.

The underlying imperative is control. CONTROL. This is so old school.

Quickly.... in the Saturn business model..... selling is "customer oriented'. The salesman is encouraged to use his excellent interpersonal skills and push the plus, plus, plus of the Saturn experience, until the customer wets him or herself. No beating them over the head, waiting them out, and twisting their arm of the bygone days. Enthusiasm. they want enthusiastic customers. The Service group is given an identity of the steel fist in the velvet glove. It'* a tough job, but they will find a way to fix your car correctly and quickly and never have you sense anything more than a red carpet. Quality is held above all. And they are compensated for both quality and quantity.

That'* how it'* supposed to work. Churn, churn, churn. Enthuse the customer, get the job done. Move on to the next happy-to-be customer. Don't waste your time or theirs, because we have "wins" to attend to.

Ain't so at Saturn from Hades.

Front end sales not so bad and I had one of their top guns. But he gave me a little parting swat, that made me feel like he wasn't "enthusiastic" about the deal. tell ya sometime.

Y'all know the story from there.

"Hi. Welcome to the Saturn Service department, very nice to see you. Could you stand up a little straighter. That'* better. Very good! Now how can I help you, Mr Max? Ah, so your car exploded. And you think its what? Oh yes, how intelligent of you. For being such a clever moron, we here at Saturn Service are looking forward to completely ignoring you. This is because you didn't ask the right way. See, it works this way... WE tell you what is wrong with your car. If we don't see a problem, it doesn't exist. And that includes if we don't WANT to see the problem. We have complete control over reality. What is true, what is false. We control the horizontal, we control the vertical. And no, you don't get to try again."

My opinion is that they are in passive-aggressive mode because they've been a little cornered. They were supposed to call today and didn't. I lost the afternoon to a meeting, so I'll have to start on them tomorrow. We're not even past the point on the decision if they are going to fix it.

Final thought: When i take them to court, they will have to litigate AGAINST their Comprehensive Warranty. They are going to have to say it actually doesn't cover what a 10 GM franchise dealer and I say is wrong with the car.

Somebody quick explain to me how that is good business.
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Old 11-29-2006, 12:42 AM   #40
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bugsi
(I think it would be good to move the thermostat discussion off to its own thread.)
Not a bad idea... besides, I needed practice spliting posts. Thermostat discussion can continue on here: http://www.bonnevilleclub.com/forum/...=749883#749883

EDIT: MadMax...your editorial had me wetting myself! Perhaps copying that and posting in your local newspaper'* editorial section would also be entertaining for the townfolk. Seriously, you should write for a living!
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