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New Owners of an 08 Silverado..Need some feedback on Dealership issue


Emy Cosper
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I'm posting this in a few different Chevy forums in the hopes of getting our story heard and getting some kind of useful advice or even just feedback. So I apologize if you have already seen this somewhere else.

So I'll TRY and keep this to somewhat of a minimum, but no promises. Thanks for reading all the way through if you do. I just need some feedback and/or advice.

My husband and I went down to our local Chevy Dealership and traded in our old worn out 03' Dodge Ram on 12/20/16 for a 1 owner 2008 Chevy Silverado 1500 and paid a little over $16k. LOVE this truck. It's gorgeous, all the fancy bells and whistles, (On-Star, XM, remote start, tonneau cover, etc.), seems very well taken care of, and doesn't have super low miles but seems about average for an 08'. The previous owner had bought the truck brand new in 2008 from this Chevy Dealership and had brought his truck for ANY service to this dealership. So they had all the service records. So we felt good about that.

When we bought the truck, we were obviously aware of the current recall on the Takata airbag inflaters and it hasn't been fixed yet, obviously. The truck did have a light on for the airbag and the Chevy Dealership told us it was for the SDM Airbag Module. They said they would not be fixing that because there is no current recall for the SDM module in this truck. And he's right, there isn't. I searched the VIN on GM and no recall for the SDM module. So with that being the only issue (besides the Takata inflators) we decided to buy the truck.

Here is what has happened since the night of 12/20/16. When my husband was signing all the paperwork for the truck, it also included signing up for On-Star which was done right in the office. As my husband started his drive home with his new truck, he got an email from On-Star for his new account about 5 minutes or so after he left the dealership. As most of you probably know, On-Star does diagnostics on any vehicle they have in their system and will send the account holder a report of their diagnostic check. So he read his diagnostics report and it indicated that there was an issue with the trucks emissions. That was all it said. Something we were not told about by the dealership and at this point in time there was NO check engine light on the truck. Our salesman was out of the office the following day, Wed. 12/21, so we couldn't get a hold of him until Thursday. Late Wednesday night I tried to remote start the truck and it wouldn't start with the FOB (remote start will not work with the CEL active). We started the truck with the key and that's when we noticed the check engine light. Not even 48 hours after we purchased the truck. We called On-Star and they told us the code is P0430 which is Catalyst System Low Efficiency Bank 2. Which is an O2 sensor or the cat. When we called the dealership and told them what was going on, it took them at least a week to get the service manager to call us back and get the truck in to test the code.

OK so took the truck down to the dealership, service manager tested the code and came back out and told us it read as the EVAP Vent Solenoid and that the valve flap was stuck open and causing a vacuum leak. Told us that we should have been smelling gas fumes. No we have not. At all. Never had a problem with ANY fuel issues at all. Of course we thought that sounded a little odd. My husband is not an idiot when it comes to vehicles and from what we've researched online, P0430 is a VERY specific code to the catalyst system. But of course we TRUSTED the dealership and their service manager. Maybe they knew something that we didn't about Chevy codes. So they said they would call us to schedule an appointment to have it fixed. About a week later (this past Thursday 1/5/17), we took it in to get fixed and we drove away with our loaner. Next day, we pick up the truck, service manager said they replaced the solenoid and the check engine light was off. He also told us that the problematic EVAP Vent Solenoid they replaced had no power to it and that when they took it off, the wires were crossed. How the hell does that happen..? Obviously wires don't just cross on their own. So it must have been replaced in the past by some dingle berry that couldn't figure out where the wires go and the dealership didn't have any service records on the truck for replacing the EVAP vent sol. OR that was just a flat out lie.

We were past thinking this was odd. At this point, everything that had happened since we traded in our Dodge for this truck and they only gave us $100 for our Dodge to refusing to replace the SDM module to the back door locks working intermittently after a couple days to giving us the run around about getting it in to get fixed to shotty service records about not knowing if the SDM module had or had not been replaced even though they had records that the previous owner had brought it in at least 3 separate time because of the SDM module light..honestly, I never felt good about this deal when they only offered us $100 for our Dodge. It was a worn out work truck but it was worth way more than that. I didn't want to do it. I never felt good about it and always felt like we were being played. But it was my husbands truck, I wasn't there when he bought the Chevy so it wasn't my choice. I trust my husbands judgment 100%.

FAST FORWARD TO TODAY 1/10/17. The truck had been in the shop this past Thursday and Friday. It is now Tuesday and my husband was out in the truck and called me to tell me THE CHECK ENGINE LIGHT CAME BACK ON! He called On-Star and SURE ENOUGH, it's P0430. Same. Exact. Code. Hence the title I wanna drive the damn truck through the front of the effing dealership. He has called the Dealership about 5 times already and of course, no one is available. Not our salesman or anyone in the service department. Go figure.

Only thing to keep in mind is we bought this truck USED and was classified as AS-IS sale. We knew that and were fully aware. BUT we are 100% certain that the definition of AS-IS does not include them make us FALSELY believe that the truck did not have an emissions problem, or ANY problem other than the SDM module. They specifically told us the only issue the truck has is the SDM module. The way this has worked out (On-Star emailing the diagnostic report literally 5 minutes after leaving the dealership, the code was already in their system) they HAD to have reset the check engine light on the truck probably when they brought it around for my husband to test drive it. They did not disclose that to us. They led us to believe the truck was in GREAT working condition and had we known about the emissions problem, we could have better a BETTER more ACCURATE decision on buying this truck. Or we could have negotiated the price and getting it fixed before deciding if we still wanted to buy it. They disclosed everything except for this emissions problem and the back door locks. And NOW even after they said they "fixed" it, the check engine light is back on which makes me think they just fed us a bunch of BS and they just reset the CEL light again to shut us up and stall us until we can no longer return the truck, imho. Buying AS-IS means you know EXACTLY what you are getting. We were deceived. Hands down 100% I believe they were completely deceptive and knew exactly what they were doing when they sold us this truck.

So I'm not really sure if I actually have a question. At this point, my husband is already getting the phone numbers for Wells Fargo, our financier, for GM Corporate offices or complaint department who ever we need to call there, for the Attorney General of PA, and whoever else we need to contact. Unfortunately, they aren't BBB accredited so that's not an option.

Any ideas, Thoughts, advice, similar stories, feedback for me?? Anything would help us figure out what we are going to do. Sorry it's SO long but THANK YOU so much for anyone that actually read the whole thing and is willing to give me some kind of feedback. Much appreciated!!

Edited by Emy
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Read it all. If that dealer knew about the issue and never told you, that is pretty low. Unfortunately, I don't know if there is much that can be done other than be as vocal as you can about this particular dealer's service and morals. I am no legal expert though, I hope you get this all figured out and taken care of. Good luck!

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Maybe I missed it but how many miles on the truck?

Did you take it for a road test?

 

Question for those who know, Why didn't the CL come on if there was a emissions problem? :happysad:

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They also could've removed the bulb or LED for the check engine light ...

 

Don't know about PA, but up here in MA, there's a law regarding a vehicle's ability to pass emissions. No such thing as an as-is sale up here. If it fails, the SELLER is on the hook for the repair. Even a private seller could get porked if the check engine light decides to come on while the new owners are on their way home from the sale. Anything over $700 purchase price is covered here, last I checked. YMMV in PA.

 

If you have to pass emissions where you live, then they MUST fix it.

 

If not, then I would gut the cat if it's plugged at all, and either throw a cheater sensor behind it, or install a spark plug defouler (Search Youtube - plenty of info on that) ... or just leave the light on (that does get annoying though).

 

That code has absolutely no bearing on how the engine will run. It just means the cat isn't working, or a bad o2 sensor THINKS the cat isn't working. Cats usually get smoked by misfires, so as long as you're not having misfire issues, it's not an issue as far as drivability or engine life is concerned.

Edited by Jsdirt
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Hey guys, Thanks for the replies.

 

To answer, the truck has 105k miles on it.

 

Where I live, because it's a small Rural County of PA, we have inspections but no Emissions. So bummer, I can't use emissions laws. :ughdance:

 

They didn't remove the LED or bulb because the light did come on after so many starts or miles driven, whichever one came first I guess.

 

Yes, we took it for a test drive and no the CEL was 100% NOT on during the test drive or my husbands inspection of the truck because he used the remote start in the parking lot prior to the test drive. We got the email from On-Star 5 minutes after leaving the dealership from with the diagnostics report and it stating there was an emissions issue in the truck, for more details to physically call On-Star. CEL was still not on. The following Thursday morning, about 30 or so hours after financing, the CEL then came on. Called On-star right in the truck, they said the code is PO430, Catalyst System Low Emissions, Bank 2.

 

The Dealership just got a hold of us after several messages left today and said they "looked up that code" and said that because the price of the "code", that we will be responsible for the repair. Which is clearly a load of crap. The code came back on today for a second time after they "fixed" it. They haven't even looked at the truck again since they agreed to repair it the first time (mentioned in my OP). So how do they know how much that "code" will cost when they told us they fixed it the first time and they haven't even ran another diagnostic unless they already know it's a bad cat and they just don't want to fix it.

 

Yes, I do know that the truck will run fine with the CEL on and can run with a bad cat. Or it could just be the o2 sensors which is a cheap and easy fix. We haven't had any misfires and the performance of the truck doesn't seem to be lacking. BUT the problem is we spent almost $17k on this truck. I don't know about anyone else but when I buy something, I want to know that I know EXACTLY what I am buying. ESPECIALLY for that much of our hard earned money. I am terrified that we are going to be stuck with a vehicle that we were lied to about and is going to turn into a money pit. I don't feel like they gave us the chance to make an accurate informed decision.

 

Isn't there something in the Federal Trade Commission that protects consumers from dealerships being deceptive like clearing check engine lights without informing the consumer, thus never even allowing the consumer to know exactly what they are buying "AS-IS"?

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Not really a bummer that you don't have emission testing - you're extremely lucky! Your cost of vehicle ownership will be thousands of dollars less than mine over the vehicle's lifespan.

 

That said, just on principle, I'd explore any and every avenue to get this dealer to make it right. I'd confront them with the blatant LIE they told you about the code - that right there tells me they're a shady business. See if others in your area have had bad experiences there. If they don't play ball, legal action might be your only course of action. From where I'm sitting, you have a solid case already.

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haha You're totally right Jsdirt. We are originally from CA and moved to PA 5 years ago. So I know ALL about getting your car "smogged" lol so yea, not really bummer. But that would have been an easy fix for this particular situation.

 

I agree about having a solid case. The blatant LIE about the code was actually sent from our salesman in a TEXT MESSAGE about two hours ago, not said over the phone or even in person. So we have the actual LIE in writing :rollin: doesn't get any better than that. We are fully ready to contact GM, another Chevy Dealership, the Attorney General, Federal Trade Commission, and anyone else I can possibly think of. I am not one to keep my mouth shut and not afraid to rustle some feathers when it's warranted and the "right" thing to be done. So that's exactly what I'll be doing tomorrow. Thanks a whole bunch for your replies and help. I really appreciate it!!

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You're very welcome.

 

I hate dishonest people, ESPECIALLY sales people. They seem to be spreading like a disease these days. I fully support nipping that in the bud wherever possible.

 

Good luck - I hope you get justice. :cheers:

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Unfortunately, your dealer is a crook. Being around the criminal justice system for 37 years, the term "As Is" is a get out of jail free card for dealers should an unexpected problem arise after the sale. Here is an accurate "Google" definition of the term and it does not mean you know exactly what you are getting: As Is means the item is being sold complete with all issues known and unknown. A car being sold “As Is" is being sold without a warranty and any problem with the car is no longer the responsibility of the dealer once it has been sold. All repair costs will come directly from the pocket of the buyer.

 

Proving the problem (emissions) was expected may be your only angle for legal action against the dealer.

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UPDATE:

Just had a mutual friend of a friend who is a GM Specialist pull up some service records on the truck. Very surprising results!

post-167629-0-17853700-1484152606_thumb.png

Apparently the engine was replaced in 2012. Didn't know about that. Wouldn't a faulty engine possibly cause a catalytic converter to go bad???

I am blown away at everything we keep digging up about this truck. I wanna cry. We feel so completely 100% duped and lied to.

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post-167629-0-17853700-1484152606_thumb.png

post-167629-0-17853700-1484152606_thumb.png

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The old engine probably melted the converter. They probably just cleaned it up and reinstalled it. Par for the course. I hear this same story over and over and over about GM dealerships. More dishonest people. :nonod:

 

I wouldn't let a dealership change my oil, let alone do an engine swap. The horror stories are endless ...

 

Sorry you ended up holding the bag when the music stopped. The good news is, you've got a barely 5 year old engine. IF you can get that dealership to make things right, it will be worth holding on to. Keep the oil changed, and it should last quite some time. Even if they burn you, your one of the lucky ones that can gut the cat and leave it - throw a good cold-air intake on it, a mild tune, and the truck will gain mileage and power over stock. Win-win. :)

 

It could always be worse. You could be one of the poor folks that paid $35k for a new one, only to have it use a quart of oil every 200 miles. GM's last resort was an entire engine - they would throw every bandaid on the planet at those engines. Some people didn't know any better and had the same issues again just out of warranty. Have read it on the net a hundred times, and it happened to a good friend of mine with his Camaro. GM tried cutting corners on the first engine fix, and the thing scattered it's internals all over the highway, leaving my buddy to walk to work that morning. After all that, they finally put a fresh engine in. :nonod:

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Not to discount your troubles.

I agree with jsdirt on a fairly new engine.

 

Do what ever you want, fix it, sell it but do it and move on. Get over it.

We all could probably remember a purchase that didn't go well.

 

If the family is healthy, the job is steady things could always be worse.

 

After my wife's major medical issue things really got put into perspective for me.

Stop letting this ruin your life. Hug the kids, pet the dog, kiss the spouse, it's all good. :happysad:

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Diyer2 you made me laugh so thank you. You are totally right. It could be MUCH worse. Right now, this seems like the worst thing that could possibly happen ever in the history of anything lol BUT in reality, we have been through (and survived through) much MUCH worse than being lied to by a shady dealership. So thank you for reminding me of that and making me smile :D

 

Jsdirt, you're right too..Finding out the truck has a 4 year old engine wasn't bad news. Shocking, but kind of a relief tbh. With the headache we've be dealing with since we bought the truck, finding out we won't have to deal with engine issues (HOPEFULLY) was like a breath of fresh air.

 

At the end of the day, we did get a good truck and we are grateful for that. The previous owner obviously took very good care of this truck and took the appropriate steps to handle it like a responsible vehicle owner should. So regardless there's that. And if we need to take some money and fix the stupid cat ourselves then that is what we will do. Won't be happy about it lol but we will do what needs to be done. We do love the truck and are happy to be newborns in the Chevy Family.

 

Thank you guys for your feedback and support with our situation. It really helped over the last day having someone who can at least sympathize and not treat me like an emotional over dramatic consumer lol so much appreciated!!!

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Cut out the cat, fool the computer....be happy. Those are junk anyway. A problem waiting to happen...which it did.

 

I doubt many salesmen actually dig into vehicle history anyway. They're going to tell you what they think you want to hear. The truck is solid, aside from some emissions junk. Lose the junk.

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