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Fuel issue on steep decline driveway?

Discussion in 'VF Holden Commodore (2013 - 2017)' started by snortings, Nov 22, 2018.

  1. snortings

    snortings Active Member

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    Sure is annoying, especially when it sits at Holden for days on end and it doesn’t do it at all. Waste of both parties time, but oh well I guess it has to be done. Seems like the only way they’ll see it happen is if they come to my home each morning and suss it out, but then again it doesn’t happen every time so :rolleyes:
     
  2. Skylarking

    Skylarking Well-Known Member

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    Can’t remember if your car is still under factory warranty, but regardless, such issues shouldn’t be occurring in a 2015 SV6, some of which sold with a 5 year warranty!

    I’d be somewhat pissed at paying any diagnostics fee when I have a video demonstrating the problem. Id also be rather annoyed annoying at being stung you for a new battery that did nothing to resolve the issue. But I’d be ropable at paying $100 for an oil top up (that’s just wrong).

    As most phones have a bunch of sensors built in, I’d use your phone to measure the gradient of your driveway where you park the car. There are apps that can show the degree of a slope that you can use. As all slopes are not the same, I’d then give the service agent such a measurement with clear instructions as to the vehicle being nose down along with a video of the noise on USB thumb drive. Then, it’s for them to sort out what the problem is as they are the experts.

    It also past due to sort out if your car is under factory warranty or HCC good will. So discuss the issue with HCC as such problem shouldn’t occur in such a relatively new car (where some variants around that vintage sold with a 5 year warranty).

    If your lucky, and the service guys have a brain, their used car lot would have those large vehicle sized ramps they sometimes use to place for sale vehicles on AND such a ramp would be made the same gradient as your driveway. They could then use such device as an aid to their fault finding process by getting your vehicle at an incline simulating your driveway. And hopefully HCC has come to the game and accepted some responsibility for this odd issue so your not left having to sign blank cheque’s as part of the diagnostics process.

    Good luck.
     
  3. snortings

    snortings Active Member

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    They believe it isn't the starter motor as it would be squealing due to the difference in rotational speed from the starter motor and the engine rpm. They want me to park it on flat ground for a week, and then retry on my driveway to confirm that it definitely only happens when it's on a decline. Then if it happens again they said they'll try and find somewhere a lot steeper somewhere in the dealership, and said they'd talk to sales to see if they could put my car on that ramp they use to put new cars on.

    I got the compass app on my phone and looked at the gradient of my driveway, it says it's only 15 degrees but it's closer to about 30-40 degrees.

    What would I say to HCC?
     
  4. Skylarking

    Skylarking Well-Known Member

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    A 40 degree driveway is stupidly steep (measured at 4 meters horizontally and just over 3 meters vertically) so may be worth using a spirit level and a tape measure along with some trigonometry to calculate the actual angle if you don’t trust the phone app.

    As for what to say to HCC. I’d be suggesting that your car is new enough that such problems you have been experiencing should be occurring. And that the vehicle design is such that the dealer seems to be having difficulty diagnosed the problem while they change unrelated parts at your cost hoping they will hit the fault. As such I’d suggest to HCC that someone from their engineering group needs to get involved in the diagnosis of this issue which you’ve captured on video as the dealers don’t seem to be coping.
     
    Last edited: Feb 3, 2019
  5. snortings

    snortings Active Member

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    Yeah true 40 degrees is probably a little excessive. I would do some trig but the driveway itself isn't actually a straight line pointing down. I've put a picture below. The box is the house, and the line is the driveway from a side angle coming from the road.

    upload_2019-2-12_10-49-39.png

    So after a week of parking the car on flat ground as recommended by Holden I moved it to the driveway and the second time of being on the driveway it had it's trouble starting, which confirms that it definitely only happens when it's on a decline. In the video below you can see it crank for ages to which I just decided to stop the car because it was just non-stop cranking. I then got in the car after I stopped it from the key and turned it on from the ignition and it had trouble starting once again but it eventually lit up after about 5 seconds or so.

     
  6. Skylarking

    Skylarking Well-Known Member

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    The dealer must be able to sort it now considering you have another video of the probl m. If they can’t they/you need to get Holden involved.

    Giving then the driveway angle atleast quantifies it so they have something concrete to go by.

    So simply measure the angle of the car rather than the angle of the driveway which seems to vary along its length.

    You can approximate this by measuring the horizontal distance from the rear tyre contact point to the vertical plane that intersects with the front tyre contact point (gives the adjacent).

    Then measure the vertical distance from the front tyre contact point to the horizontal plane that intersects with the rear tyre contact point (gives the opposite).

    (The hypotenuse is the wheel base).

    Then the angle your car/driveway = tan-1 (opposite/adjacent). Samsung has a calculator with such features built in (open calculator and turn phone on its side). With iPone you have to download and install an app...

    Or place your phone on the underside of the vehicle sill between the wheels and read the angle... it should be very close to what you calculated.
     
  7. snortings

    snortings Active Member

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    Well I dropped the car off to Holden for 3 days whilst I was away on a holiday, showed them the videos and they said it's definitely strange. Came back today to pick up the car... nothing. Couldn't replicate the issue, this is getting beyond ridiculous. Whilst at the dealership I said is there a way you can escalate it through Holden and he said (approximately) that whilst there is an issue there really isn't anything to escalate.

    A few things he said it might be is the oil pickup, being on such a steep slope even though the sump is full it might be moved away from the pickup. He recommended to just put a little more oil in (~250ml) and see how that goes as it definitely fixed the issue for a few days the first time. Another thing he said that it could be the timing chain slipping (referring to the rattle noise). Also that apparently the camshaft does test's or something and I really can't remember the rest.

    Took the car home and parked it on the driveway for about 6-7 hours and I just went to move it before onto the flat road to put some more oil in, and what do you know? It had trouble starting, which is the video I've got below. I honestly don't know what to do now, every time it's down at the dealership for days on end it never happens (apart from the first time when it happened at the dealership and the oil was low, so they filled it up which resolved the issue for a few days). Is it worth ringing up Holden whilst the guy at the dealership said there really isn't anything to escalate? I'm starting to get the feeling that this is getting really annoying for them as much as it is frustrating for me. The service guy we know personally as a family friend... so we know he wouldn't lie to us.

    We also suggested that it might be starved of fuel, to which his reply was that fuel delivery is pretty instantaneous.

    What do you think now @Skylarking

     
  8. snortings

    snortings Active Member

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    Sorry to call upon you once again, but seeing as though you are a Gold level technician and this is starting to become very frustrating... what do you think @RiCeY
     
  9. 1985VK

    1985VK Active Member

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    Can a length of clear fuel line be put somewhere in the engine bay to SEE what the fuel delivery is like in the line?
     
  10. Skylarking

    Skylarking Well-Known Member

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    Don’t think clear pvc line is a good idea on a pressurised fuel delivery system. Maybe someone sells strong high pressure resistant and fuel resistant glass/plastic fitting but I’m not aware of such.

    However, there must be a method to add a fuel pressure gauge to the fuel rail in the engine bay to supplement the pressure sensor that one should be able to read via OBD, just to check all is well with the fuel delivery.

    @snorting, I’d give HCC a call and outline your starting issue with the car when parked nose down on a decline of x degrees. That it has been at the dealer x times for a total of y days (whatever the numbers are) but their dealer was unable to resolve the issue in all their attempts to do so dispite clear evidence of a problem via video. That it all very frustrating not being able to rely on a 2015 model commodore (of which many sold with 5 year warranty).

    Tell HCC that you want assistance provided to the dealer from someone within Holden enginerring department to aid them in fixing this major fault as, in the dealers words, they are stumped and clutching at straws.

    Also tell them that if they can’t provide the required support to the dealer and provide a loan car to you while this fault is being resolved, you will have no choice but to consider this issue has raise to that of a major fault under ACL by virtue of the many failed attempts to rectify the problem. As such your only option will be to chose the ACL remedy of a full refund of purchase price due to major fault (don’t mention that this is a private purchase). But do highlight that you’d hope that someone within their engineering department will be able to help fault find and resolve the issue with the dealer as you’ve become attached to the car (though it is wearing thin by the day).

    Obviously this assumes you haven’t told the dealer or HCC that you actually bought the car privately as they would have such on file somewhere so it’s a bit of an ACL major fault bluff in part.

    But do remember that Holden still have to meet their manufacturers warranty and as a 2015 build, you first had the issue nov 2018 which is around 4 years of age. The guess that it’s not likely a early January build, that’s less than 4 years of age. Further checking the build date and add a month or five before it was actually sold could conceivably bring it to a month or so within or just out of warranty. As such it would be worth contacting original purchase for actual delivery date (though first rego date may be a good approximation). Then there is that fact some 2015 vehicles sold with 5 year warranties. All these things could be used as arguing points if HCC resist providing assistance to help the dealer resolve this issue.

    Good luck.
     
  11. VS 5.0

    VS 5.0 Well-Known Member

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  12. Sabbath'

    Sabbath' Redblock Jesus

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    Dealer sounds like they've given you a few possible causes. You not being able to remember half of what they told you doesnt help your decision making or help us to inform you. Since the vehicle is outside manufacturers warranty, is a secondhand purchase and the "advice" you are getting here is to essentially lie and hope they come to the party, all the while the issue could be causing more and more damage to your vehicle which in the end they may not be obligated to cover you're going to seriously need to start looking at taking some action on this issue rather than stalling. Whether that be getting them to keep the car until they can replicate the fault. Start an in-depth diagnosis based on their observations. Or, you can take it to another mechanic for another opinion.

    If it's an oil pressure problem, as with the pickup/low oil line of reasoning. The oil pressure sensor may be tripping the car not to start as it see's insufficient pressure, but on the subsequent time it has built up enough pressure to go past the threshold. Has the vehicle ever had a sump removed?
     
  13. Skylarking

    Skylarking Well-Known Member

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    @Sabbath' the dealer has had a number of chances to diagnose the non start issue but it seems they have not been able to fix the problem as I have my doubts they have actually placed the vehicle at the same incline as Wayne’s driveway for some 6 or so hours to have a better chance at simulating this intermittent start condition.

    The dealers are the experts and though we all know an engine start needs compression, rotation, spark air and fuel entering a cylinder under the correct conditions to even have a chance at kicking over, so should they. The dealer also would, or should know exactly under what conditions a start is aborted to protect the engine (if such protection even exists). As such, with this being an intermittent problem, one would presume they have checked all these basic things to ensure all bases are covered. But I suspect they just crank it over with the vehicle at a slight nose down angle while connected to their diagnostics system and then check fault codes. Unfortunately it being an intermittent issue, they don’t experiance it and thus they see nothing. Then it seems they blame it on oil level, fuel level, or some other half arsed clutch at straw excuse and recommend Wayne top up fluid and see how it goes before finally admitting they actually have no idea and that there are no avenues for them to seek help from Holden (which I call bullish!t on).

    As such, I would think any subsequent damage caused by driving around would be a dealers liability issue to resolve rather than blaming the owner because he may not be mechanically minded and not have understand of all the subtlety of their bullish!t in lieu of the dealer having any real idea what’s going on.

    And as I’ve never read in any Holden owners manual that a vehicle can’t be parked on inclines or driven up or down steep slopes, I can only assume and expect that the have been engineered correctly and as such can only assume they should start in a home driveway.

    So regardless of warranty having run it’s manufacturers course, maybe by a small margin, combined with Holden often handling issues outside warranty as a guest use of good will, added to their own dealer not finding the fault, I’d say their is something deficient in their diagnostics system. And as an owner shouldn’t be paying for such a deficiency which results in one part to be replaced after another until the dealer stumbles on the issue and finally solve it, Holden needs to come to the game regardless of it being a dealer purchased or a private second hand 2015 model vehicle purchase. In or out of warranty, it shouldn’t make a difference in this situation and the correct thing for Holden is to support the owner.

    And as for anyone telling Wayne to essentially lie, that’s not what I’ve done. I’ve given him advice on how to handle issues with a bad actor manufacturer (they are all the same). He needs to play the game the same way they do with a number of angles to cover the rubbish that is often spouted especiall from HCC staff that organisationally couldn’t lie straight in a coffin. Sadly HCC is structured much like a wall to keep people away from the decision makers. As such they often feed owners the company view of ACL which for years has been wrong, illegal in fact, as evident by Holden’s undertaking to not be duschbags.

    So if all this requires an omission to get them to better focus on the bigger picture of supporting their ‘no idea’ dealers with some sorely needed technical support to solve a serious problem, so be it. If you consider that a lie, well you’re free to have your opinion.
     
  14. VS 5.0

    VS 5.0 Well-Known Member

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    Please read the links I provided above.

    Manufacturer's warranty means bubkis under the ACL.
     
  15. Sabbath'

    Sabbath' Redblock Jesus

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    No, the dealer has had the vehicle a number of times. And it has failed to replicate the problem under the conditions available to them. You're making the assumption that they havent done things the same as what Wayne has described to them (there seems to be some confusion about the actual degree of his driveway even in this thread.)


    The noise is not a normal noise, anybody with half a brain can hear that from the videos. If you continue to drive a vehicle while it is making an abnormal noise then the onus is on the driver for deciding to take the risk to continue to drive the vehicle with an unresolved issue.


    Is his driveway built to the Australian standards?

    :rolleyes:
     
  16. Sabbath'

    Sabbath' Redblock Jesus

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    Has it been proven or disproven that this secondhand vehicle is experiencing a fault due to a manufacturing fault? And not something that occured while it was owned by the previous owner?
     
  17. VS 5.0

    VS 5.0 Well-Known Member

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    To legally avoid complying with their obligations under the ACL, they would need to prove that a third party has done something to the vehicle to cause the issue.

    The problem is that the "experts" apparently don't have a clue either way.

    Fobbing customers off is what required them to enter into that undertaking in the first place.

    Maybe they need to work a bit harder to meet their obligations.
     
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2019
  18. Sabbath'

    Sabbath' Redblock Jesus

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    Taken from the owners manual.


    oilpressure.jpg


    You would assume there are similar protections in place for key starts. I notice from your videos they're all remote starts. Does this happen only with the remote, or both?
     
  19. 426Cuda

    426Cuda SUBLIME!

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    @snortings Have you thought to ask the service manager / family friend to come to your house in the morning and start the car?
     
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  20. Skylarking

    Skylarking Well-Known Member

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    Yes, I’ve made a few assumptions about the dealer but i guess it comes from experiance, I could be wrong, I could be correct, guess time will tell :eek:

    But how many times do they need the car to fix a fault? From ACL interpretation, a minor fault becomes a major fault if it can’t be fixed in three attempts which the allows the owner to choose a full purchase price refund if the vehicle was bough the car from a dealer. This must be a strong incentive for a dealer to fix it on the first go ;)

    As Wayne stated, the dealer topped up the oil and sent him home and indicated he drive the car and see how it goes. Later, the dealer told him to overfill the sump (against GM/H documented statements in owners manual) and again told him to see how it goes.

    I’d think on that basis the dealer definitely has some liability here. The courts would consider the dealer service department to be experts and place more responsibilities on their actions than that of an owner (doing what he was told by these experts). This view is even the case if the owner doesn’t want to spend money and simply wants a cheap fix, the mechanic is still liable for doing a professional job even if he cuts corners to help the owner fix his truck (a rather interesting NSW small claims case, I’ll post link if I find it).

    Some people know absolutely nothing about cars and won’t even put petrol in them. All they can do is listen to the advice of their mechanic who has liability insurance and legal obligations he can’t escape (which is why I don’t go to mechanics running out of their home garage as some I people I know do).
    Probably not but it’s irrelevant unless Holden makes some statement in the owners manual about such use cases which I don’t think they or any other manufacturer does.
    I’d also assume the similar checks are done on key and remote start. Maybe the vehicle security (closed doors, windows, etc) could be more stringently checked with remote start.

    Good questions about the oil pressure issues, but shouldn’t the dealer have been checking such items if they feel the oil pressure is an issue as overfilling seems a lame solution. If doing such checks requires dropping the sump to check the oil pressure relief valve, etc, then so be it.

    But as I don’t remember Wayne having clarified if this was a warranty or good will job, Wayne could feel hamstrung by the expected costs if he is to foot the end bill. If that is the case, as such, he may not be doing himself any favours though the above mentioned NSW truck case doesn’t absolve the mechanic in such cases.

    For me, the warranty/goodwill status would have been the first thing I’d have sored out with Holden so that I know where I stand w.r.t. costs. If such is sorted out in Wayne’s favour surely the dealer must then drop the pan without question iand check their low oil pressure hypothesis (stuck pressure relief valve, cracked oil pickup o-ring, etc).

    My experiance with dealers of a few brands hasn’t been great (other than for simple services). Where they have fukced up, they have washed their hands and it became a bun fight back in the days when ACL had no meaning. So these days I won’t cut them any slack. If they seem clueless as has been stated on this thread, I’ll call them out, why cut them any slack (rhetorical)?
     

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