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Old 05-05-2009, 06:51 PM   #1
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Jaseball will become famous soon enough
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Oakland, CA
Posts: 2,532
Default 50K Service - Bad Experience

My 2003 Saturn Ion3 only has 55K miles on it, but I figured with the turmoil at Saturn and GM getting rid of the division as well as the age of the car I may as well have certain maintenance done that may be a pain if Saturn disappears -such as the coolent flush and the transmission fluid.

I also had a rear wheel noise I believed to be wheel bearings I wanted checked out.

When they give you the sheet of what is done at these dealer services I know 90% of it is complete BS, since it is all about inspecting this and that and if there is a problem you'll be charged the dealer repair rate.

The dealer told me my car's wheel bearings were fine. The noise was from cupped or feathered tires. Since they rotated the tires the noise was now up in front and far worse.

The tires with the noise problem were OEM Firestones, so with 55K miles on two OEM tires I figured replacing all 4 would be a good idea.

I went to Wheelworks this morning and they told me 1 tire was pretty shot and the other 3 were not looking so hot, so the 4 tire replacement was a good idea. They also suggested an alignment check as usual and with 4 new tires I figured that was a good idea.

What surprised me was their manager and tech came back and told me both rear shocks were bad and the passenger side front strut was bad.

I told them the Ion was at Saturn for a 50K service the day before and I specifically had a problem with tire noise and they found nothing. The guys took me out to the car and I saw caked on crap on both rears and the front passenger side did look like it was leaking, since the driver's side strut looked clean.

They didn't have the parts for the struts or the shocks, but I wanted to look into the issue myself, so I only got the 4 new tires.

When I got home and did the bounce test on the Ion it bounced 2-3x on each rear corner, so I'm pretty sure the shocks really are bad and need to be replaced.

What amazes me is the Saturn dealer didn't catch this, since it is a legitimate repair and possible safety and wear concern. They didn't even try to sell me new tires.

It made me wonder if the workers there just don't care anymore and also what else on the inspection list they just skipped and forgot about. Taking my car in for service at a dealer is time consuming, expensive, and frustrating, but this was a new experience and a concern.
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Old 05-05-2009, 09:01 PM   #2
Diesel_Clatter is on a distinguished road
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Ohio
Posts: 227

2007 ION-2 Sedan
Default Re: 50K Service - Bad Experience

You might be right, maybe depression and apathy are taking their toll. Sadly, Saturn seems like a dead man walking at this point.

I don't think I have ever heard a complaint about a dealer not suggesting needed service be done! Usually, it is the opposite problem.
Great Minds Think alike...

So do we!
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Old 05-13-2009, 01:20 PM   #3
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Default Re: 50K Service - Bad Experience

Called up the dealer and they claimed that the mechanic did see the leaking, but it is considered ok. The car bounces 2x when I do the bounce test and even Wheel Works admitted if they installed new shocks and struts and they bounced 2x after a year it isn't reason to replace them.

Also, their 'lifetime replacement,' is pretty much BS, since the major cost of replacement is the labor charges and the warranty only covers parts.

My mechanic friend also said we could just buy parts and change the shocks and struts ourselves, but he didn't believe they needed replacing.

It isn't like a dealer to miss out on the chance to charge someone, so I will give Saturn the benefit of the doubt, enjoy the set of new tires, and save the cash for now.
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