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Dealing with the Dealership ; Chevy Cobalt 07 30K miles

Common Sense, docnick and all others.

First of all thank you again, for helping me buy this car in 2009 October. It has been an excellent buy, and has served me perfectly for the year. I bought a 24,000 miles Chevy Coblalt LS Stick, for 5000$. Excellent price. It was not taken care of well, so I had to do some work. The cigarette smoke coming inside the cabin has been taken care of by a. time b. Car scent, and c. Bulk coffee powder.

There was some water inside the car on the front passenger side, which was diagnosed as the flowback coming from the AC condenser output. I was worried, because there was a bunch of electricals there. Luckily for me, at 24,000 miles and 2 years old, the car was STILL under warranty (thank you again, the great sires of Cartalk for guiding me towards a Chevy rather than a 100K Honda , for 5000 USD)

The warranty allowed me to have the dealer take care of a bunch of these issues, the water, they replaced BOTH the front struts 500$ each (yaay) because the right front was broken and I complained about a noise coming from the left front, and they couldnt figure it out…so they replaced the strut !!!

Current issues:

Now, they also replaced the power steering motor under the recall. This affected the airbag module, which kept coming on and off. They replaced the air bag module as well. Even after replacement the check airbag light intermittently comes on (check airbag) .

They are going to replace it a second time, when I take it in. But it has stopped for now, So I am going to tell them to keep the part for me in spare (my warranty ran out July 31st, but they are still helping me out with the last few issues which remained unsolved), till it starts lighting up again and then replace it.

The indicator light is no longer ticking when turning left or right. Usually it used to have a tick tick sound, which has now stopped coming. They havent been able to figure this out and they basically did nothing about it. My father was supervising and hes a nice guy from India, not used to dealing with people here. hence he did not insist too much.

I tried to get them to figure that out, but they gave up and basically told me to live with it.

I’m pretty happy with the car, it runs very well, gives me 23 mpg in the city, and at 150 hp at low revs, its sporty as well, which I enjoy every now and then.

Houston roads especially around the richmond montrose area are like roads in India, thus the suspension takes a beating and you have to drive slow. I am NOT OPTIMISTIC about the perceived expenditure on the suspension that I shall have to do to run this car properly.

Also, these electrical issues are worrisome. Because as I hear, once they start, they keep on and on and on going.

It is, though, a little shoddily built. the electricals and the suspension could be better as well. The rotors and brakes are also substandard. I drive an Elantra in India, and even after the battering that Indian roads give it, I don’t see it shudder or shake from the brakes. In summary the brakes, suspension, steering and electricals, watch out for, engine, transmission, gearbox is good.

The engine, gear shifting and power transmission, at 30,000 miles is brilliant, though. I reckon I can run till around 120 K easily with the routine maintenance.

1. Any advice on hearing about the above issues?

2. Any good mechanics for chevrolet in Houston that are inexpensive as well?

3. I have the owners manual which recommends adding Dex cool coolant and water . Can someone guide me to another users manual which gives me a good brand of coolant to rely on, as dexcool has a lot of complaints. Recommendations on simple do it yourself maintenance.?

Thanks, in advance, you guys are really helpful and I am grateful for all your knowledge.



Dexcool works fine for us; a 96 driven for 12 years with one antifreeze change at 6 years and another at 12 years just prior to trade-in with no problems; not even a failed water pump.

My wife’s 99 was ok for 71,000 miles to trade-in too.

Don’t mix Dexcool with incompatible antifreezes and also make sure that your pressure cap is good which for me was never a problem; I used the original cap for 12 years.