Author Topic: Working On a Vehicle BuyBack / Replacement  (Read 4151 times)

stevedoug

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Working On a Vehicle BuyBack / Replacement
« on: March 11, 2013, 12:57:00 PM »
To make a very long story short, I have a 2009 Volvo C30 that has been in the dealer around 15 times for various warranty repairs. Some minor, some critical (including no starts, and stalling at highway speeds, wheels needing replacement, HVAC system complete failures, fuel pump, tank, and control module replacement, battery replacement, etc).

Recently out of Warranty (53000 miles, on a 50000 mile warranty) I've found several very expensive failures:

-Front spring and struts need to be replaced $1500
-O2 sensor needs to be replaced for around $400
-Passenger door doesn't shut on cold days $????
-Severe buzzing from HVAC $????
-Windshield Seal failed causing water to enter cabin $500 repair
-Brakes worn out, $500 in parts


I'm all for fixing / maintaining cars myself. But at this point I cannot keep up with the repairs as fast as the failures are coming!
Brakes were last week's project, O2 sensor this week's project. I can't keep up!

I have a few ideas...
-I'm going to consult with Volvo on extending my warranty? Or possibly buying the vehicle back.
-Sell the vehicle and lease a vehicle
-Sell the vehicle and buy another used (despite the irrationality of it, I'm very fearful of another used car)
-Deal with the problems and suck it up, hoping the car doesn't explode at some point in the future.

Input? Ideas? Suggestions? Face punching?

As key notes,
I drive around 9000 miles / year, the car is paid off, and kbb is $17500. I have no non mortgage debt, and I'm at a 60% savings rate. I am a car guy and love cars. If I did not discover MMM I would probably be leasing a Maserati right now.

Thanks ahead of time
« Last Edit: March 11, 2013, 01:05:54 PM by stevedoug »

brewer12345

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Re: Working On a Vehicle BuyBack / Replacement
« Reply #1 on: March 11, 2013, 01:00:57 PM »
I think I would bail on this particular car.  Money is nice, but some level of headaches will overwhelm the incremental dollar.  As for what to do after you dump this rolling problem, I would probably buy a modestly priced vehicle from a more reliable brand.

stevedoug

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Re: Working On a Vehicle BuyBack / Replacement
« Reply #2 on: March 11, 2013, 01:08:12 PM »
Thanks Brewer,
as a note the car gets 21MPG City, 26MPG Highway.
It's a subcompact, Turbo 5 Cylinder.

I'm considering a lease on something like a Mazda3, Subaru Impreza 5 door, or even a Toyota Tacoma

GoStumpy

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Re: Working On a Vehicle BuyBack / Replacement
« Reply #3 on: March 11, 2013, 01:33:23 PM »
Why are you leasing?  Is it a company vehicle?

stevedoug

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Re: Working On a Vehicle BuyBack / Replacement
« Reply #4 on: March 11, 2013, 02:23:33 PM »
Why are you leasing?  Is it a company vehicle?

No, and lease is not decided yet.
I'm all bought in on the MMM way of life, but I do not have the time to maintain this used vehicle. The HVAC job alone is an 8 hour job, with a trained tech, in a shop with proper tools. Meaning more like a 15 to 20 hour job on my own. The struts are another 10 hour job, with additional tool investment.

I'm trying to maximize my productivity, and my time is better spent renovating my condo as a rental, learning other new skills, and getting a good night's sleep.

Which is why a new car (lease or not), with quick access to dealer for potential repairs is enticing.
Every used car I've had (88 Oldsmobile, 99 Pontiac, 03 Alero, and now 09 Volvo) the monthly repair / maintenance costs have exceeded $250 / month. Most leases are about that.

(as a side note, I am an Automotive Quality Engineer)

DoubleDown

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Re: Working On a Vehicle BuyBack / Replacement
« Reply #5 on: March 11, 2013, 02:39:17 PM »
You might have already been down this road, but I'll go ahead and ask: Is there any possibility these problems existed or should have been discovered before the warranty expired? Especially if you ever had it serviced at the dealer.

With that much going wrong all at once, just after the warranty expired (which sounds suspicious/unlikely), I'd at least have a talk with Volvo and see what could be done on their dime. If they were dismissive, saying the warranty's expired, too bad, blah blah, I'd probably play the "These things did not develop overnight, you should have discovered and informed me about them earlier (before the warranty expired) -- what are you going to do to correct it now?" card. Then I'd take it to their corporate headquarters to see what could be done. Many companies will go outside the strict warranty terms to fix such problems to keep up a reputation, and it costs nothing to try.

Good luck.

stevedoug

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Re: Working On a Vehicle BuyBack / Replacement
« Reply #6 on: March 11, 2013, 02:44:52 PM »
You might have already been down this road, but I'll go ahead and ask: Is there any possibility these problems existed or should have been discovered before the warranty expired? Especially if you ever had it serviced at the dealer.

With that much going wrong all at once, just after the warranty expired (which sounds suspicious/unlikely), I'd at least have a talk with Volvo and see what could be done on their dime. If they were dismissive, saying the warranty's expired, too bad, blah blah, I'd probably play the "These things did not develop overnight, you should have discovered and informed me about them earlier (before the warranty expired) -- what are you going to do to correct it now?" card. Then I'd take it to their corporate headquarters to see what could be done. Many companies will go outside the strict warranty terms to fix such problems to keep up a reputation, and it costs nothing to try.

Good luck.

Thanks!

I am on that path right now. The vehicle will be 'diagnosed' by the dealer, then a ticket will be opened with a regional manager to investigate good will. Additionally a ticket was opened with central customer care, will will also get to the regional manager.

If the dealer repairs the key critical issues 'good will,' then I should be good to go. If not, I'm working on plan B.
I really like your logic of "you should have caught these during your inspections under warranty." I will use that! Thanks

and man, no one said frugality was easy... but I never realized how much time it takes to research and plan so many different projects at once!

Spork

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Re: Working On a Vehicle BuyBack / Replacement
« Reply #7 on: March 11, 2013, 02:54:33 PM »
Which is why a new car (lease or not), with quick access to dealer for potential repairs is enticing.
Every used car I've had (88 Oldsmobile, 99 Pontiac, 03 Alero, and now 09 Volvo) the monthly repair / maintenance costs have exceeded $250 / month. Most leases are about that.

Is it just me, or does $3000/year seem excessive for repair/maintenance?  I'm about to dump a truck that I've decided is beginning to be "expensive" in the repair/maintenance category (forget about the gas category) ... and my worst year wasn't that bad -- and that's the year I had to get the tranny rebuilt.

GoStumpy

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Re: Working On a Vehicle BuyBack / Replacement
« Reply #8 on: March 11, 2013, 02:58:41 PM »
Yeahh... sorry but I'm having a tough time figuring that much repair cost!   However, looking at your vehicle history, the Pontiac/Olds can be notoriously troublesome, as well Volvo has never been cited as cheap to maintain!

I think a change in vehicle choices is the most important thing... What do you think of Honda, Toyota, Ford ?  The first two are cheap to maintain because they rarely break, and the latter is cheap because parts/repairs are easy and affordable....



stevedoug

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Re: Working On a Vehicle BuyBack / Replacement
« Reply #9 on: March 11, 2013, 02:59:12 PM »
Which is why a new car (lease or not), with quick access to dealer for potential repairs is enticing.
Every used car I've had (88 Oldsmobile, 99 Pontiac, 03 Alero, and now 09 Volvo) the monthly repair / maintenance costs have exceeded $250 / month. Most leases are about that.

Is it just me, or does $3000/year seem excessive for repair/maintenance?  I'm about to dump a truck that I've decided is beginning to be "expensive" in the repair/maintenance category (forget about the gas category) ... and my worst year wasn't that bad -- and that's the year I had to get the tranny rebuilt.

Going back into my records, It is a bit excessive.

The Volvo, yes is around 3 grand a year in repair costs (at least so far, only in year 1 now). The parts are rare and hard to find.

The less expensive Grand am and Oldsmobile averaged around 2000 to 2500 a year.

stevedoug

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Re: Working On a Vehicle BuyBack / Replacement
« Reply #10 on: March 11, 2013, 03:02:32 PM »
Yeahh... sorry but I'm having a tough time figuring that much repair cost!   However, looking at your vehicle history, the Pontiac/Olds can be notoriously troublesome, as well Volvo has never been cited as cheap to maintain!

I think a change in vehicle choices is the most important thing... What do you think of Honda, Toyota, Ford ?  The first two are cheap to maintain because they rarely break, and the latter is cheap because parts/repairs are easy and affordable....

Absolutely.
I have access to repair records for several major automakers. Problems come on all cars, but a single brand doesn't always mean less repairs. It comes down to specific makes.

I think when people say Toyota / Honda they really mean... Camry, Corolla, Civic, Accord. Some of the other newer cars (Scion tC, Honda CRX, etc) aren't much more dependable than some of the American counterparts.

But yes, my next vehicle will be dependable vs. fun. I'm exhausted by this "fun car." Screw you hedonistic adaptation!