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Should car companies be inclined to let owners know how to do a little maintenance on added features

While reading the post on the “running boards” that GMC installed on some of its vehicles and watching that thread and seeing how the OP had to actually call the manufacturer who GMC had install all the boards on the vehicles to get some sort of idea what was wrong with it and also how to give it some maintenance (seems like it could have been a headache) it got me thinking… Should car companies today include in the car maunual how to do maintenance items on such things? On my Grand Marquis which has a sunroof there is no mentioning anywhere in the manual about how to give it a little tlc yourself. Only how to operate it. And seeing as sunroofs Can develop a leak if say the drain holes get clogged then it makes things that much more frustrating for a owner of the car to try and find out what the problem is when it could really be something simple. Anyways I just think it would be very helpful if the car companies of today did mention how to give some of these added on features such as I mentioned a little tlc yourself. Feel free to chime in.

Also forgive me I don’t know if it’s Just a GMC thing or if all the car companies fail to mention how to maintenance such features… But feel free to let me know :slight_smile:

Car companies advising on added on items? Your kidding . With the number of people who read the manual why would they do that. All manuals have a maintenance schedule.

As for the moon roof drains I can see people shoving things in there they shouldn’t .

This is something conversion van companies used to do - they’d include a manual for all of the goodies they installed and where applicable the manual usually told you what you needed to do to keep it working right.

Considering the average car owner is apparently so maintenance-averse that car companies were advertising that you could weld the hood shut for 100,000 miles, I’d be surprised to see them admit to additional maintenance necessary for those add-on options that most people buy and then never use.

Car companies advising on added on items? Your kidding . With the number of people who read the manual why would they do that. All manuals have a maintenance schedule.

Maintenance schedule is one thing…how to do the maintenance is something else. The last few vehicles we’ve owned…the maintenance section told you WHEN to take the car to the dealer for them to do the maintenance. Earlier vehicles had a good synopsis on how to do certain things…like change the filters and oil…or even change the spark-plugs.

The trend these days from ALL manufacturers…is to give as little information out as possible to the consumer.

You want to learn…find someone to teach you or take a class at the local tech school.

Sorry I didn’t mean maintenance items as far as the engine goes, oil change, spark plugs and etcetera. I just meant it seemed to me that in that post the OP had to call the actual manufacturer about what the best solution was to fix his problem. I mean couldn’t they have just mentioned in the manual that it’s recommended to lube up some of the moving parts? But yeah I guess you’re right @MikeInNH and that’s rather a shame. I’m just thinking of the hassle of it.

But then again I’m sure most people don’t take the time to really go through their cars manual throughly. Younger people that is

It seems thay all want to get you into the dealership for service.
Cars, TVs, Phones, computers, washers, driers, furnaces, you name it . .they don’t WANT - YOU - to know enough to do it yourself.
AND. . some even have horrible tech support who doesn’t know any more than you.

— I emailed Vizio about hooking up a Bose extension speaker via bluetooth. I knew it should be possible but couldn’t fint it in the manual and thought ( silly me ) that it’d be quicker to email.
Their own tech support had no idea…
I finally found the answer myself after searching menu after menu . . in and out of seventeen vaugue sub-menues for about an hour till finally I found my anser and hooked up the bluetooth speaker.
No thatnks at all to the company’s own no-nothing tachie !

This is the great advantage of this new-fangled thingy they call the interweb or whatever.

Chat rooms like this ? . . .SUPER VALUABLE.
YouTube also. very useful if someone else has encounter it.

@“ken green” I agree YouTube is the place to go.

My neighbor has a car with a broken sunroof that broke in the “vent” position. now he has to put a tarp over everytime it rains… It Makes me think he probably had no idea you need to re lube where it slides on so that it still can operate smoothly… Simple things such as That could go long ways in maintaining a sunroof and it’s motor. . Just saying.

Things have changed in the last 50 years. My old 59 VW manual had a lot of owner maintenance information in it. But these days I think most people will not be concerned and they are cautioned to get it to the dealer and they will be able to handle it. If you really want to get into these things, you buy the factory service manual, body manual, with the service updates. So its all there depending on what level you want to operate at. For me though, I’m tired of laying on the garage floor much anymore. It takes 500 pages just to cover all the bells and whistles so adding another 1000 pages would be a little overwhelming for most and wouldn’t fit in the glove box.

A good youtube resource for car repair is Eric the Car Guy. He’s very good at explaining exactly what he’s doing while you watch, and he makes sure to jam his camera right up to whatever he’s working on so you don’t have to guess at where things are.

Some of his videos are sold, but he’s got a lot of free ones on Youtube.

@“John Andrew McCormick” All your neighbor has to do is find a body shop and they can put the moon roof in closed position and solve the problem.

The owners manual shows what needs to be performed for maintenance, this is what it shows for body lubrication;

Lubricate all key lock cylinders, hood latch assembly,
secondary latch, pivots, spring anchor, release pawl,
rear compartment hinges, outer liftgate handle pivot
points, rear door detent link, roller mechanism, liftgate
handle pivot points, latch bolt, fuel door hinge, cargo
door hinge, locks, and folding seat hardware. More
frequent lubrication may be required when exposed to
a corrosive environment. Applying silicone grease
on weatherstrips with a clean cloth will make them
last longer, seal better, and not stick or squeak

Power step maintenance is not listed, that is in the owners manual supplement provided by the installer;

MAINTENANCE TIPS -The stepping surface and linkages should be periodically washed with mild soap
and water using a soft brush or sponge to dislodge any mud, dirt or accumulated road grime.
In severe driving conditions, pressure washing the linkages is strongly recommended.
Avoid spraying the motors directly with high-pressure water. After washing, apply Silicone spray lubricant to the pivot pins of each linkage assembly. Remove any excess lubricant with a soft clean cloth. Do not apply Silicone spray, waxes or protectants like Armor All®
to the stepping surfaces

An owner can find guides like this on line or call the manufacture and have it read to them.

The dealer is the manufacturer’s partner, not the buyer. It seems to me the manufacturer should make sure their partner is the most up to date resource for all maintenance and repairs. There are other resources for determining how to do whatever needs to be done. Sometimes it is the dealer mechanics. I was at a Honda dealer getting a wheel lock key and stopped to talk to some mechanics on break. They offered some good advice on an issue or two I was working on.

Were I in new-car purchasing mode, I’d ask about what technical service information the manufacturer provides to the purchaser of their car. For example if they offered free access to the car’s online shop manual, that’d be a plus and might sway my buying decision. Likewise if they offered access to an owner’s forum where owners could share tips for diy’er servicing and maintaining and fixing that particular car.

Technical service information is available for a fee and there is no way to restrict you from an owner’s forum or from starting your own forum.

The only time I’ve ever come close to the dealer providing maintenance information was for my 81 Olds and the dealer was a friend of the family. Finally we were both as far as we could go and he agreed to throw in a factory repair manual. It was a used 79 manual from the shop with an 81 update and it worked fine. But that’s it.

The reality is that almost nobody, except the folks on this board, reads the car manual these days. To a generation raised on Twitter, anything longer than 144 characters is a waste of time. At work I send out emails that have all the required info in the first three sentences or nobody absorbs the information. Car manufacturers are riding the trend of today’s attention challenged generations and saving time and money by keeping car manuals as simple and generic as possible. Basically they are a “here is how you use this” guide and not a “here is how you take care of it” manual.

Car companies walk a thn line between encouraging customers to do their own basic maintence and liability. The areas you can get into trouble messing around the front bumper or even under a car seat with all the safety decices, rivals that of being under the hood of older cars.

The sunroof slides jam and plastic drive gear strips. Ur screwed. Time for new sunroof.