We had smoke coming from under the hood in Austin and then a little bit more while putzing around Galveston. So I made an appointment with GMC dealership in New Orleans where I know we would be for a few days. Our last 2 days of travel to New Orleans the HVAC fan was temperamental…wouldn’t run at all then randomly would start up again. Then in Baton Rouge I got the dash message that said I had 500 miles of DEF left…I figured I’d just have dealer top it off for me.
So I showed up at dealer right on schedule at 2:30, gave them the scoop on everything and also asked for an oil change. When the mechanic heard about the smoke he knew instantly which clamp the smoke was coming from. He said I’d need a new catalytic converter. WHAT?!!! Those things ain’t cheap and mine is only a month old! “Well, the cat isn’t bad, but they didn’t install it right so you have to replace the whole assembly.” I whipped out my papers that showed the work had just been done by GMC certified technician and I had 12 months parts and labor. “That only covers if the part is bad, not if it was installed improperly.” I call the dealership that did the work, they call the New Orleans dealership, maybe they do their secret handshakes, I don’t know….but after the tech actually looks at it he says it looks like they installed it correctly. They think its the stickers/labels on the new exhaust system burning off. Alright, so we’ll just keep an eye on the smoking. Next they tell me that the DEF fluid will be $180. WHAT?!!! Its wiz and water…it doesn’t cost that much. “Well, we have to ‘reset the system’ when we fill it with DEF”. I show him in the manual that it says, when the DEF low level message appears add more DEF and the system will reset itself no further service is required. “Yeah, thats what its supposed to do but it never does.” I said, well lets just add fluid and see if it resets…if it doesn’t you can “reset the system”. On to the HVAC issue…blower motor is bad and resistor module needs replaced. $115 to diagnose it and $700 to fix. I whip out my fancy dancy expensive extended warranty papers, we call the company and ….”oh, sorry thats not covered”. Cover your ears if you don’t like cussing….what the hell am I paying for if nothing that is wrong with my truck is covered by this stupid warranty??
So 3.5 hours of my life, a $99 oil change (I half way wonder if they even did this), $115 to diagnose the HVAC problem, and 2 gallons of DEF at $23 per gallon…I take my keys and get the heck out of there. I pull out of their parking lot, DEF warning goes away and wouldn’t you know, the AC fan came on. I stopped at Walmart to get some grocery items and picked up 2.5 gallons of DEF for $12….thats right, dealer charges almost 5 times more for wiz and water.
The following morning I check oil to make sure they actually put some in there. The dude slopped DEF all over so I washed that off. Inside the dash showed 69% oil life….they didn’t reset the computer. AND they didn’t put a sticker in my window showing they did the oil change. I’m really suspicious that I paid for them to let me sit in their waiting room while they did NOTHING to my truck.
After several days the DEF warning has stayed off…so I’m glad I didn’t pay the $180 to “reset the system”. And the HVAC fan has worked flawlessly. We did get more smoke though after tooling around town in New Orleans…ugh.