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Vibe Maintenance & Repair Concerns



  • You said
    "Also, has anyone purchased the protection package with the side air baqs and theft system?
    I'm wondering if this is a financially sound injury/death prevention purchase option?"

    It is a total waste of money unless you happen to need it. It is a question that no one can answer but you. If you want to apply RISK assessment, the probablity of needing the airbag is relatively low, but the consequence of not having the airbag can be very high.

    As for me, I could afford it and I felt much better having the option, so I got it. However, I had to search very hard to find one. Local dealer did a transfer for me, so at the end it all worked out. BTW, I would have gotten the side airbags only if I could have.
  • tommyg12tommyg12 Posts: 158
    Read my post #179. The monsoon in my area continues and I have driven over 100 miles in the last two days, no sunroof leakage. Modern factory installed sunroofs should not leak, plain and simple. There has to be a misalignment of the roof and/or the seals.
  • tommyg12tommyg12 Posts: 158
    On the flip side I might eat my words as far as not having a problem. You guys with sunroofs try this: while sitting in the car with dim or dark surroundings, shine a flashlight along the rear seal. I can see a stream of light on my passenger side rear corner (bingo, just what you guys were saying)! How I haven't had a leak yet I have no idea. Heck, I can stand outside, open the passenger door, reach in and stick my hand along the rear of the roof and see my finger!! I will be at the dealer asap tomorrow, this is unacceptable! My dealer has an excellent service department having always been honest and caring, so I will post their response as soon as I leave. I never doubted you owners with leaks at all, and just stand behind that no factory installed sunroof should leak. Hopefully there is a resolution.
  • tommyg12tommyg12 Posts: 158
    While I'm on a roll and it's raining so hard, I started looking around all of the doors and in the rear hatch for other leaks. Found water running in on the right rear driver's side tail light access panel. This might be something the rest of you want to check. Hopefully these are all minor problems that are easily resolved, but I'm starting to feel that this car is not up to typical Toyota standards.
  • tommyg12tommyg12 Posts: 158
    "The sunroof seal is in spec. The seal is not supposed to be airtight. Water will sometimes drip into the rain channel. If water ever gets into the car or is noticed on the headliner, then there is a problem."

    There were a couple of 'Trixs on the lot. It was still raining and the dealer gave me the keys to both while the tech was looking at mine. Both cars were dripping.

    Also, I checked with one of the Yahoo groups that is moderated by four Toyota technicians, and they all agree with my dealer.
  • Listen to this..I also have had problems with my 2004 Vibe. The sunroof is leaking and the paint starting coming off under the driver's side door when I was washing it at the carwash. I took the Vibe into my dealer who kept it overnight to check the sunroof. They could not fix it and told me they would have to order another sunroof. They told me that they would have to special order one and it would probably be months and have to be made for me. They put a paper towel under the leak. The service manager also told me when I came to pick it up that he had gotten a bulletin from the manufactor that they were having problems with the Vibe sunroof leaking and didn't know of a fix.

    Does that mean that if I am out in my car and it starts to raining that it will continue to leak until I get home into the garage? What if I didn't have a garage?

    Today is when I washed it and the paint started peeling back. I have already had to take it back so that the bumper could be painted. They had to repain the whole bumper. Wonder what they will say when I go by there tomorrow. I am not happy, I know that. I went to trade it last week and my $21,000 Vibe with 6100 miles was only worth $11,000 trade-in on a $27,000 car. I owe $18,000 on it. So, I wonder what to do at this point. Any suggestions? I think I could probably say I had a lemon. TN has a lemon law. I am considering it. Plan on talking to my attorney tomorrow.
  • thelthel Posts: 767
    No good way to get out of this situation I'm afraid. It's too bad, these aren't bad cars, but a few bugs can ruin the whole experience.

    Is yours a Vibe GT or a regular one? Unfortunately for you, the Vibe's resale isn't as high as the Matrix b/c GM is into the huge cash rebate thing. That said, it sounds like you could do a whole lot better on trade than $11,000 once the car is fixed by the dealer.

    I would suggest being patient, getting the car fixed up and then, if you're still PO'd, try selling the car to Carmax. They usually do much better than the dealers do.
  • tommyg12tommyg12 Posts: 158
    Do you have water actually getting into the car and/or headliner? Or is the water dripping in the back and running out through the rain channel under the car?
  • rog96rog96 Posts: 21
    Does anyone know how to treat this condition? (03 Vibe with 12k mi. and always garaged) Going to call dealer, hope the fix is under warranty ...
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,726
    venting the A/C for a couple of minutes before you park it for long periods of time. Do this by running with 'fresh' rather than 'recirc'. Do it occasionally during your driving too.

    2014 Mini Cooper (stick shift of course), 2016 Camry hybrid, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (keeping the stick alive)

  • Could also clean/replace the filter in the system. Might be something there causing the smell.
  • My 2003 Matrix, 11 months old with 20000 km on it, needs a new clutch and flywheel --- really expensive! As expected the dealer is blaming the driver, says there is a big round burn mark on the flywheel; how can I argue that? I have smelled burning rubber on this car and the 2000 COROLLA i HAD, was told it was nothing; now I am wondering?? Have driven 10 manual transmission cars since 1980, not one needed a clutch to be replaced... I am wondering if the way the Matrix reacts and/or its design cause the driver to drive in a certain way? Anyway, anybody have any ideas about approaching Toyota to argue for the powertrain warranty? I think that I should expect reasonable durability in a new car, no matter the way it has been driven???
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,726
    the powertrain warranty might specifically exclude the clutch, considered a "wear item". But as long as the car has not been raced, I would try some sweet-talking, and ask to speak to the district rep if the dealership people aren't sympathetic.

    2014 Mini Cooper (stick shift of course), 2016 Camry hybrid, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (keeping the stick alive)

  • thelthel Posts: 767
    I can sense the clutch in my Matrix is doomed to an early demise. Every time I ride it even a little (backing up slowly for example) I get that burning smell....argghhh.
  • thelthel Posts: 767
    I changed the oil in my Matrix last night. Piece of cake really. The oil filter is easy to reach, but it does "point" straight down so upon removing it I got fairly well doused in old oil on my arm. I filled it up with just under 5 qts. of Castrol 5W30 "hard driving" dino oil with no worries.

    I did have to do the old spear the old filter with the screwdriver maneuver to remove the old filter and I had to pop a couple of plastic screws on the cover doo-dad under the filter to get my arm in there for leverage but it was still pretty easy overall. Much easier than my Miata was. I never even attempted it in any of my Hondas....oh the horror.... But it wasn't as easy as my F150 was (oil filter right there in the wheel well of all things:) ).
  • mcdawggmcdawgg Posts: 1,680
    When changing the filter, just unscrew it very slowly when you get to the end of the threads until the oil just starts to run out. Then let it leak for a minute or so, then finish removing it with a paper towel wrapped around it. I used to get an arm full of oil, but now I just get a few drops and/or a smear of oil on my hand.
    Another example of Toyota's smart design: easy oil changes! My mechanic friend always says that Toyotas are the easiest to work on and they are the most reliable. I agree with you - Hondas are a nightmare to change.
  • thelthel Posts: 767
    But I wore some old baseball gloves instead of using paper towels. I'll try that in the future. The filter didn't have all that much oil in it but it can make a mess if you're not prepared for it.
  • alfredmi -- back in January (posts 142-144) you said you were getting your catalytic converter replaced. Did that take care of your burning smell?
  • deg856deg856 Posts: 120
    You know, I thought all of you who said the moonroof leaked were crazy. How could it? Well, got my XR w/ moonroof two days ago. It was raining this morning, so I open the headliner on the freeway and took a look. Guess what - I saw a slow drip from the right rear corner of the moonroof. Since a few have reported checking with the dealers and were told that this was normal, I'm not worried at this point. (It's great to have a forum like this.) We also have a Sienna w/ moonroof but I never thought of checking for leaks. It'll be interesting to see if the Sienna does this.

    San Jose, CA
  • carbonnicarbonni Posts: 33
    I am concerned about my new 04 Vibe's engine idle noise: when at operating temperature (low idle - 800 rpm) I can hear clearly a metallic noise coming from the engine area. It sounds like a rapid tapping noise (6-8 times/second). When I press the gas pedal, it goes away, but it returns next time the engine is at low idle. I can hear it from inside the car. Yesterday I opened the hood, and it seemed to be coming from the upper part of the engine (like when something was hitting the engine cover - but I felt no unusual vibration when touching the engine cover). When listening below the engine's top (in front of the radiator), I could not hear the noise - it seemed to propagate upwards from the engine.
    The dealer says it's normal for this engine, but I wonder if anybody else is experiencing the same problem. I have never seen a diesel engine, but that is how I imagine such an engine would sound. Also, I have not seen similar complaints on the Corolla boards, so I wonder if it's really an engine characteristic or something else.
  • montanafanmontanafan Posts: 945
    I think if you check some-sort of emissions value just to the left (as you look) of the master cylinder unit, you will find your noise source. Gentleman up the street describes it as a sewing machine type noise (but I wouldn't know what that sounds like ;-) ).
  • carbonnicarbonni Posts: 33
    "Sewing machine type noise" is, indeed, a good description. I suppose you meant "valve" rather than "value"? And that valve is not physically producing the noise, it is making the engine to produce the noise? (I could swear the noise comes from the engine)
  • montanafanmontanafan Posts: 945
    He spent the whole afternoon after he got the car under his hood, and finally convinced himself it was coming from that "valve". He went back to the dealer and started two other cars, to confirm the noise. He swears that the 2003 Vibe he had for the 24hr test drive didn't make the noise.
  • carbonnicarbonni Posts: 33
    Well, I must admit that I was confounding the valve noise with the engine noise. They are, in fact, two different things. The valve clicking is, probably, what I hear inside the car. Anybody knows if the new Corolla has the same problem? Last year, I've rented an 03 Corolla for 2 weeks, but I don't remember hearing a similar noise.
  • I have a 2004 vibe with the monochrome paint package - paint on all areas that are plastic is very susceptible to chipping, especially below doors. My husband has an Isuzu (100% Japanese Manufacturing) and all plastic mouldings are a solid color throughout - no paint, which avoids this issue many of us are having with the Vibe. Love the Vibe otherwise... Would like to hear from others that have this issue.
  • thelthel Posts: 767
    Must be too many Iron Maiden concerts and handgun firing range adventures for me...I can barely hear the enging in my XRS below 4,000 RPM.
  • capitanocapitano Posts: 509

    I was gonna remark about your comment from a month or so ago when you said your XRS wasn't loud enough, thel. I thought you must have be being sarcastic but I guess not. My XRS is plenty loud for me.

    I've got Number of the Beast in my CD changer, but sometimes it is entertaining enough to listen to the engine.

    BTW, I saw your comments in the smartshopper boards about ditching your car. Is it really that bad for you? I know you're coming from a Miata and all, but so bad you want to be rid of it so soon? The trix is easily the best handling and performing car I've ever owned. The only things better that I have been privileged to drive were an old RX7 and my dad's 330Ci.
  • LuzerLuzer Posts: 119
    Did they ever get the light on/light off fix?
    It's been over a year since the trix had the TSB.

    Did GM ever get their own TSB out? If yes, Anyone with details from a dealer after the fix? I think it was a relay switch.
  • thelthel Posts: 767
    # of the Beast is good one! I know how to play a couple of those songs (guitar)...The Prisoner, The Number of the Beast, Run to the Hills and my favorite from that album, Hallowed be Thy Name. :D My monkier (sp?), "thel", is actually from a Bruce Dickinson song off of "Chemical Wedding".

    As for the car, the seating position has done such a number on my left leg that I can barely stand to drive it. The pain is quite bad, almost unbearable...something about the upright seating position and the relatively high engagement point of the clutch I guess.

    Anyway, Carmax offered by $13,500, I ran, not walked, out of the place and let my wife drive home. She thinks that she can handle the stick even thought she prefers the sluchbox in her Civic so we're going to trade for a little while and see if my leg heals. If it does, I'll blame the car. If it doesn't, I'll blame something else like tennis season. Either way I won't be getting rid of it anytime soon if that is all the Matrix is worth...Even my Protege5 didn't depreciate that quickly.

    I paid $15,500 for the P5, a few months later, a dealer offered $12,500...not too bad. I paid $19,500 for the Matrix back in November of 03 and now I'm offered $13,500 and I'm left wondering if I really bought a Hynundai or something!? LOL!
  • thelthel Posts: 767
    The most annoying feature of this car has to be that friggin' beeping of the tranny in reverse. >:(
This discussion has been closed.