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How do I know I really got a new steering column?

I just got my steering column replaced, but the dust that was in the grooves between my steering wheel and the column, and the little crumbs inside the part where the stick thingamajig that turns your wiper blades on and off comes out, and the little crumbs in the grooves between the plastic pieces over the column, all seem to be just as they were before.

So do crumbs really stick that much, or did they put the new steering column in from underneath, or did they just not do it at all (due to it being a recall but not being sure that it was the problem, plus the problem not apparently being serious, plus perhaps being fed up with me because I got fed up with them about something) ??

Assuming a salvaged column was installed, the shop would remove the original steering wheel, the ignition and multi function switch and the shroud around the column because the color would likely have been different and it would be difficult and expensive to reprogram the cars theft system otherwise, depending on make and model of the automobile.

Recall? Year make and model please. And what was the original trouble with the car?

What I would do is go to service desk with the work order receipt and ask real nice to explain what was done. And then just say you thought the column and steering wheel would look different or at least cleaner.

I sincerely hope a salvaged part would not be used for a recall as it would probably have the same fault! I have worked for a GM dealer. From your description I would suspect your dealers mechanic test drove your vehicle, found no indications of the recall fault, and the dealer reported that the recall was completed. I doubt if the mechanic risked their job by being paid for work not done as the part would not have been removed from inventory. I would suspect the dealer reported the recalled part being replaced and was paid by the manufacturer. Criminal if the recall was a safety issue also the dealer committed theft. Unethical? Yes. Is the manufacturer going to question that the recalled part was replaced? No. Their A** is covered.

What is the mystery vehicle ?
A new steering column will not have the trim covers nor the steering wheel. They must re-use yours.
Is there a column part number on your receipt ?

As sgtrock said, a recall can very well involve inspection, proof of need or not, and out the door it goes…recall complete.
There are more recalls accross the industry that most people ever realize. Most don’t make the news and most are a simple matter of fixing something IF it needs.

Year, make, model, mileage, and problem?
Oh, and did whatever the shop do fix the problem?

C’mon, man, we need something to work with here!