I just need to share my experiences with the air con in my VE SV6, and maybe take some advice on where to go from here...
I bought it used from Brian Gardner Holden with 23,000kms on the clock. Told the sales guy the air con seemed warm, and he promised to have it sorted before I collected the car. It appears nothing was done and like an idiot, I drove it for a year and a half before I got so frustrated I took it back while under warranty. They said it was a software issue and upgraded the software.
A few months later, with obviously nothing fixed, I got frustrated again and took it back in. Finally they looked at it and replaced the header control assembly.
A little while later, after this still hadn't fixed anything, I took it back. They looked again, and realised the 'schroder valves' (sp?) were loose, and had leaked all the gas out. So they topped it up and replaced the valves. That worked for about a week (last September), and then it seemed to go back to not working. Unfortunately, that's where the warranty ran out. It took a few months of playing with it to realise it STILL wasn't working - seemed coolish during mornings, evenings, maybe sometimes during the day. But overall - rubbish performance.
I took it back this morning, and let them know I was over it, and none of the previous fixes had worked, and I just want to know what the heck is wrong with it. I've just been called to say that in the 5 months since it was last in to get checked 2 aircon pipes, 2 aircon seals, 1 pipe seal and 1 condenser seal have all failed, to a cost of $695 to fix.
Are they seriously expecting me to believe that all of those parts failed within the past 5 months, or am I right to believe that they didn't bother checking or testing the last time it went in. It seems they just found the first faulty thing and ignored checking anything else, and put it back on the road. What if the problem had been with the brakes??? Would they just find the first thing and put it back on the road without testing???
So short of coughing up $695 for something that I believe has been a problem all along, does anyone have any advice on where to go from here???
Thanks in advance...
Update - I've just been on the phone to the service manager. He says he runs his aircon all year around because keeping the coolant running through the system keeps the seals, etc from perishing or wearing out (not his exact words, but how I understood what he was saying).
So if there was no coolant at all in the system for the past 3 years because of the leaking valves, this is the cause of all these pipes and seals needing replacing now? That's what it seems like to me. Others out there might be more familiar with how it all works?
I have a 12 year old Vectra as well which has never had an aircon service or re-gas and has icy cold aircon. Seems my VE can't hold gas in it for more than a week...
I currently have a problem with the AC in my SV6, seems like it needs to be re gassed. Hopefully I don't have the same amount of trouble you've had!
What the service manager said does have truth to it, in the AC system there is an oil, it keeps all the rubbers in good condition.
I know that so some jap cars turn the air con on when you select reverse, this allows the AC gas and oil to be pumped around the system and helps look after the seals.
This is to look after the seals in winter when you're not turning the AC on.
As for advice on how to deal with the $695 bill, I would argue that it was a known problem with you car, having taken it back so many times. I think you can call Holden direct though, and inform them of what's happening, they might cover part of the cost.
Thanks for the advice, Big Jim.
Apparently they are contacting Holden to see if they can make a claim, but it's good to know I might be able to call them directly if they tell the dealer 'no'. I assume I just google the details for Holden Australia's head office?
.....and if you feel that you are not getting the service from these people that you would expect, go straight to consumer affairs with all details of dates, times and whom you spoke to and what you were told, ETC...
Customer Assistance Centre
PO Box 1714,
Melbourne, Victoria, 3001
Phone: 1800 033 349
Hours of Operation:
Monday - Friday 8am - 7pm (EST)
Saturday 9am - 1pm (EST)
i understand that problems with a late model car are annoying and time wasting...
but why would you let it go for 1.5 years plus , to get it sorted ?
surely a hot day in that timeframe would tell you to get it sorted..... part of the expense of a late model car is to enjoy the investment by having it working...
You reported the issue while under warranty therefore it remains a warrantable fix until repaired.
You shouldnt be paying a cent.
GOLD Level Holden Technician.
Thanks everyone for your help so far.
Titleist - I know, I did leave it quite a while, but like I said - sometimes I felt it was working, most often not. I just wasn't sure if it was because it's a bigger car, or a dark colour... stupid, I know. But mostly it's because I hate making issues and dealing with this stuff, and because I know it's a hassle to take stuff like this in to get sorted out.
It's now Wednesday afternoon, and I haven't heard a word from them about whether it's going to be fixed or not - the last I heard from them was a phone call last Thursday morning saying they were looking into it. That's 6 days with no car and no word about what's going on - and it's just air-con seals. Don't get me wrong - the service manager was extremely helpful, and as far as I know he's just waiting to hear from Holden, but it is a hassle. I don't know how much longer it's going to take. A lot of us do need a car for work.
When my Vectra lost its gearbox under warranty a couple of years ago, I took it back to the same place. They told me it was going to take 12 weeks to get a new gearbox from Queensland! I reckon I could walk to Queensland and back in 12 weeks! They gave me a loan car, but then called me two days later and asked me to return it as they had given me an unregistered car. I took it back, and they had no other loan car so had to spend the remaining time with nothing. This is why I try not to bother with this sort of thing...
I'll keep you all updated... thanks again...
Don't let peanuts screw you around. Doesn't take 12 weeks to re-register a car !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Maybe it takes their service dept that much time to do a pink slip ..