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Mazda6 Maintenance and Repair



  • Well, I went to a Houston dealer today to check out the 6s, sticker prices, and see what kind of crap dealer add on packages they have stuck on these(and hopefully find one without that stuff) Of course I found an 03 6s with all the options I wanted. It sticked at about 26k. Of course there was some SEAL package for $1500 that didn't appear to have done anything, so good news is they will probably just take it off, whatever it was. The dealer was closed so it gave me an opportunity to really look around without being bothered. But naturally the cars are locked. Well none of the 03's were locked. I sat in the s model looked great, leather was nice, I liked the layout. However before I went to the dealer I have been reading about this rust thing so of course I look..and guess what... rust all over the front doors under the weather stripping. I kept looking around and found no others with the options I wanted..6s, stick, leather, bose...but all the 03's were open and they all had rusty doors.. they were also June builds from Flat Rock. One of the vin's was m48664, which I thought was supposed to be out of the range. Oh well I guess I'll wait till they price the 04's better or find the source of this rust issue. Man, I really liked the car though. As I type this I'm thinking.. huh..I wonder if they will give me a better deal on a rust vehicle...but what am I thinking it's rust it might as well be cancer. I sure hope they find out this rust thing is really not a big deal so that I can by the car I want at a good price but I doubt it, it definitely had rust not just staining. Weird thing was there was a bunch of rust spots where the license plate goes. any way sorry for the long post about my whole experience I really just wanted to post the vin if anyone was curious
  • seafseaf Posts: 339
    It's sad to see so many 03 MZ6's in the lots with rust. I wonder if these were the leftover ones after the customers picked out the non-rusted cars.
  • I started noticing a very small puddle of pink fluid under my 6s (under the hood, driver's side toward the front). No more than 10-15cc's The lighting is poor where I keep the car, so it's not clear to me what's leaking. It's there every morning for the last few days. I'm taking it to the shop in a few days. What could be leaking? No problems otherwise 11k miles after purchase.
  • ashutoshsmashutoshsm Posts: 1,007
    The coolant!

    Check the level (locate the tank based on your manual, or prior knowledge!). Top it up (based on the recommendation for appropriate coolant in the manual - the type escapes me right now) and take it in pronto if you notice the leak or a reduction in level again. If its overflow, you're ok - if not, I imagine they should check the system for leaks etc.
  • newcar31newcar31 Posts: 3,711
    learn something new everyday. I wonder if it's long life, or if it's just pink. I guess I could look in the owner's manual...

    Another pink fluid that it might be is automatic transmission fluid. Do you have an automatic?
  • ashutoshsmashutoshsm Posts: 1,007
    ... maybe its rust? Leaking out from under the car now, eh Todd? :)
  • dinu01dinu01 Posts: 2,586
    Regular coolant is light green and long-life is pink - usually.

    Other manufacturers have used and maybe still use other colours (GM orange and VW/Audi blue come to mind). It's important to check this (with your dealer and in your manual and obviously in the coolant overflow bin and radiator) and not assume that green will do it on every car.

  • newcar31newcar31 Posts: 3,711
    That's why I was wondering if it's pink for the sake of being pink (like Toyotas) or if it was a version of Dex-Cool long life coolant. Remember, I used to work at J-lube? Haven't had a chance to look in the owner's manual yet. I'm hoping it's regular, because that dex-cool stuff is expensive.
  • gee35coupegee35coupe Posts: 3,475
    The cost of the coolant shouldn't be an issue since it's still under warranty. You shouldn't have to top it off.
  • ashutoshsmashutoshsm Posts: 1,007
    I recommended a 'diagnostic' topping up, and then some attention to the level over the next few days/miles. Any leak SHOULD be addressed with a service call!
  • newcar31newcar31 Posts: 3,711
    it's not my car that's leaking

    Oh yeah, if it turns out to be transmission fluid, when you top it off, don't forget to leave the car idling in park. After you check the fluid and add (if needed), run the transmission through the gears (with your foot on the brake) and check it again. Don't overfill, go to the dealer.
  • I recently purchased a 2003 6 with sport package, it has a black interior. I've noticed that when I clean the the door panels or the black around the dashboard, the black seems to wipe off and it leaves it white, as if the paint comes off, almost like salt stains. nothing I've tried has removed the white. If you clean it, it appears to go away, but the white returns when it drys. Has anyone else found any product to clean/remedy this? If so, please let me know the name of the product, and where I could purchase it from. Thanks.
  • ashutoshsmashutoshsm Posts: 1,007
    Have been known to work. I haven't tried any of those myself.

    Detailing discussion forums exist here and elsewhere - ask the experts!

    I have a grey interior in mine, and this also exhibits the same staining on door materials. Wiping with a damp cloth, then Armor All (paper) has done the trick for me. Some of them are more stubborn!
  • dinu01dinu01 Posts: 2,586
    I don't use anything but water on my black interior PRO ES since Armor All and similar products shine too much and Windex-type products with cleaning detergents fade plastics.

  • Don't use detergents or polishes like armor all
  • A young lady hit my rear passenger side wheel last night and now it's out of alignment. I was wondering if anyone knows what the alignment limitations are on the rear wheels. The problem feels like the toe in is off. I wonder if the toe in is even adjustable on the rear of the mz6. There may be some bent suspension parts in there and I just want to make sure any repair gets the alignment and suspension back to a new state. Thanks for any comments
  • I own a Mazda6s, purchased in late September, and I have rust/staining on all 4 doors, but no other evidence of rust. I went to the dealer yesterday to discuss this problem with the service manager, hoping to schedule a date for the “fix”. I was surprised to find that mine is the first car taken to this dealership with the problem, and the service manager seemed only vaguely aware that this problem existed. She asked me if I knew whether Mazda had come up with a “fix”, and I informed her of the TSB.

    I have a few thoughts. First, I am not sure that this rust issue will be catastrophic, as many have suggested. It may well be, but it may also be a relatively simple problem to address – time will tell. For those of you who work or have worked in the industry, are you surprised that the service manager was not aware of this problem? Are there so many TSBs coming across their desks that they do not automatically read them all – or scan them, at least? I would have thought that Mazda USA would have publicized this issue to the dealers fairly heavily. I told her that there was LOTS of information about the rust/stain on the internet (thank goodness!!)

    I was also surprised that no one else had presented to this dealer with this problem. I live in a major metropolitan area and this is a very busy dealership. Either this problem is not as widespread as the newsgroups make it appear, or else there are numerous owners who have not yet learned to look under their weather stripping. I asked the service manager to look around the lot to see if they had any cars with rust/stain and consider “practicing” the fix on one of their cars before doing mine – she’s going to investigate and call once she has a plan to propose.

    Finally, for those of you considering the purchase of a Mazda6, I am very happy with the car, despite the concern over the rust/stain. It is a blast to drive, and I could find no other car to match its performance/fun-to-drive/cost ratio. It’s a great car.
  • Since this is a TSB and not a recall, there may be thousands of owners out there with the problem that are not aware. None of us would have been aware until an owner looked under his weatherstripping and noticed it. For the most part it is not visible and will not get noticed unless someone informs them of it. If it truly is rust, most owners won't find out about it until it is too late.
  • Were you the one who was going to have an independent lab to tests, etc. to determine it is truly rust? If so, what is the status of that?
  • I am the one. The tests have been delayed, maybe indefinitely. There is the issue of raising money for the tests and it would be hard now that there is a sense of complacency with most of the owners that have the staining and a sense of hostility with some of the owners that don't have the staining. Plus, the number of test subjects is rapidly decreasing as more and more owners are getting the fix. There is nothing to sample once the staining is cleaned and the sash cavity sealed off. It appears Mazda's fix is satisfying the vast majority... great for Mazda. For us, the results are unknown.

    Perhaps when the holidays are over we'll make an effort to raise the money and get the tests... right now, most people are focusing on holiday shopping and preparations, and money is tighter.
  • cop414cop414 Posts: 68
    My 6 is back to the dealer for the 4th time in 2 months. The front brakes squeal loudly when going at low speeds while turning. They've installed a "kit", replaced boots, reallinged the shield, all to no avail. I also have an intermittant front wheel hop/shudder when starting out. I can't duplicate it, but when it happens it feels like the front wheels are going to shake off of the car. This might happen several times in one day, then not again for a week. Hot or cold, turning or straight, doesn't matter. I had the wheels rotated and balanced-no change. The car tracks and stops straight. I, as well as the service manager are at a loss. We both thought that maybe the two problems may be connected?
    A factory rep will be looking at the car tomorrow. I thought that I remembered a long time ago a post(s) about improper torquing of some front end parts. Any ideas? I'd like to be able to call them in the AM if anyone remembers this. (sorry about spelling-in a hurry)
    Thanks in advance.
    PS Just a little bit of rust in the "notched" part of the door frame.
  • There have been several cases where the front suspension subframe was not torqued correctly. However, the main symptom of this is vehicle wandering and is initially diagnosed as an alignment or tire problem.

    Does your 6 have a manual tranny? The 3rd Gen Protege (99-03) had a similar problem, but only during cold take-offs. The problem is clutch chatter caused by certain materials in the flywheel and clutch cover. A TSB was released calling for the replacement of both parts with new revised parts. If your dealership can replicate the problem, replacing the clutch disc (or flywheel and clutch cover) might be in order to rectify. Here is a link to that TSB:

    Protege TSB MT000003848
  • As a person that has been watching this whole rust problem for months now and have become concerned at the lack of unity with all of you,I was going to purchase a Mazda 6 until this problem surfaced.The "Fix" is a bandaid placed on a major wound.If 4DoorZoom is not going to give all of you the means to unite and find out exactly what is going on inside your doors,someone better.Mazda has not gotten my money and won't until this problem is solved.Simple facts! Rust stains come from RUST!The stain can be removed but if the metal where the rust is is not addressed, the rust will never sleep!The Mazda 6 is a beautiful car and drives like a dream for the price.What good is all that if your doors fall off in three years.It's up to all of you, Mazda will pick you apart if they can take you on one at a time.
  • chikoochikoo Posts: 3,008
    why would you want to sink $$$$ in a test when you can do a preliminary test to ascertain whether that yello-orange stain is rust or as mazda claims simply pink soap turning orange?
    If that preliminary test comes back positive, then go for the $$$$ test.

    my 2 cents.
  • I have the same problem and I have made some posts to the board concerning those problems. I've had my car since 2 Jan 03 and it has been 5 months, numerous visits, and no luck getting it fixed. If I didn't like the car so much I would have sacked it by now. The loud squeal only happened when I made a hard left turn under 5mph, now it does it while turning right as well. It's soooo embarrasing when you pull into a parking lot space and everyone is checking your fine ride out and this loud annoying squeal f's it all up. The knocking noise in the front suspension occurs off and on especially when going over speed bumps that have a high face. My checjk engine light stays on. I've had the CPU reset and it's back on. My baby will be at the dealer for a while in the next week. If problems persist, I'm considering getting rid of it. I can't use all my leave spending time at the dealer. Still a nice car though.
  • Exactly. It seems to be rust based on the pics I've seen. But, I haven't read any definitive proof that the staining is, in fact, rust related.
  • Actually, that does make a lot of sense. I will look into cheap tests that anyone can purchase and use. On my car, there is no doubt that it is rust with the rusty sheet metal visible along a few edges and the paint flaking away. The tests need to be conducted on cars with the much more common staining. I'll research and post where owners can get the tests. Thanks.
  • cop414cop414 Posts: 68
    I called my service manager this morning-he told me that they were aware of the subframe problem, and that they check every 6 that come into the shop and that so far they have found only one that was not done right at the factory. He told me that mine has been checked. I also told him about the clutch problem with the pro-he knew about this also, and think he was telling the truth as I let him talk about it after I mentioned it and he told me the correct info according to the TSB-I call back tomorrow AM to see how they made out.

    I agree 110%. Go to any fast food drive thru with your window down-the squeal resonates off the building making it twice as bad. Someone posted a while back about a co. having aftermarket front pads for the six, I checked the site and they do exist. If I remember right they ran about 60.00 for the pair. They are supposed to reduce the dust issue. If this fix doesn't work I think I'll just order them and have my local shop install them. I'll look thru the posts and re post with the one that has the site on. My dealer is 45 min away, so I travel 1,5 hours 4-5 times so far, it would be much less frustrating to just put the aftermarket pads on and leave it at that.
  • ok. my local mechanic confirmed that I have a small leak bottom drivers side of radiator. 13k on the car now. So I've made an appointment with a dealer next week. It's not the dealer who sold me that car. ( He's 2 hours away. ) This local dealer should honor the warranty, right? I take it I should demand a new factory radiator, regardless of how small the leak is, rather than some quick fix, right? I'm really apprehensive about dealer service deparments, never having had to use one. Should I call the day before and make sure they have a factory radiator on hand? Thanks
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