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Recall advice for used PT buyer

 
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  #1 (permalink)  
Old 11 May 2008, 11:34 am
Fresh Cruiser
 
Join Date: May 2008
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Default Recall advice for used PT buyer

Yesterday I bought a used (60,000 miles) 2002 PT Limited from a near by used car dealer. I test drove it on Friday and went back late yesterday to do the transaction after they got the new state inspection done. I pulled out and was several miles away before I used my turn signal and noticed it was not working. I bought this car for my daughter with the hope of it lasting about four years or so. I got home to show my daughter and she was so excited that she was shaking. I watched her and her mom and brother take off for a test drive and noticed there were no brake lights coming on as she made the first stop. I'm thinking, how did this pass the state inspection?

After doing a little checking, I found that the instrument cluster backlighting is not working and the hazard lights are not working.

I checked the fuses:
Engine compartment fuse panel, #18, 15a fuse - Hazard = Blown
Interior fuse panel, #2, 15a fuse - Parking Lamp = Blown
Interior fuse panel, #12, 15a fuse - Stop Lamp = Blown

I replaced the fuses and saw that the instrument cluster backlighting flashed on for just a second and blew the #2 fuse again along with the #18 fuse.

I searched the web and found this site, joined and started digging. After lots of digging I found that there were 3 recalls for the 2002 I had just purchased.

2002 Chrysler PT Cruiser Recalls
____________________________

Recall ID # 01V288000 - ELECTRICAL SYSTEM:WIRING:INTERIOR/UNDER DASH
Recall Date: SEP 10, 2001 Component: ELECTRICAL SYSTEM:WIRING:INTERIOR/UNDER DASH Model Affected: PT CRUISER Potential Units Affected: 43000 Recall Date:
SEP 10, 2001
Model Affected:
2002 CHRYSLER PT CRUISER
Summary:
VEHICLE DESCRIPTION: CERTAIN SPORT UTILITY VEHICLES ARE BEING RECALLED FOR A SOFTWARE ERROR IN THE INSTRUMENT CLUSTER MICROPROCESSOR. UNDER CERTAIN CONDITIONS, THE CLUSTER, WITH THE MAJORITY OF ITS GAUGES, ILLUMINATION, AND WARNING LAMPS, COULD BECOME INOPERATIVE.
Consequence:
DRIVING THE VEHICLE WITH AN INOPERATIVE CLUSTER COULD CAUSE A DISTRACTION, INCREASING THE RISK OF A CRASH.
Remedy:
DEALERS WILL RE-FLASH THE CLUSTER SOFTWARE TO CORRECT THE CONDITION. OWNER NOTIFICATION BEGAN OCTOBER 8, 2001. OWNERS WHO TAKE THEIR VEHICLES TO AN AUTHORIZED DEALER ON AN AGREED UPON SERVICE DATE AND DO NOT RECEIVE THE FREE REMEDY WITHIN A REASONABLE TIME SHOULD CONTACT DAIMLERCHRYSLER AT 1-800-853-1403.
Potential Units Affected:
43000
Notes:
DAIMLERCHRYSLER CORPORATION 994
_________________________________
Recall ID # 04V268000 - STEERING:HYDRAULIC POWER ASSIST:HOSE, PIPING, AND CONNECTION
Recall Date: JUN 03, 2004 Component: STEERING:HYDRAULIC POWER ASSIST:HOSE, PIPING, AND CONNECTIONS Model Affected: PT CRUISER Potential Units Affected: 438391 Recall Date:
JUN 03, 2004
Model Affected:
2002 CHRYSLER PT CRUISER
Summary:
ON CERTAIN PASSENGER VEHICLES EQUIPPED WITH 2.4L NON-TURBOCHARGED ENGINES AND AUTOMATIC TRANSAXLES, THE POWER STEERING PRESSURE HOSE MAY CONTACT THE AUTOMATIC TRANSAXLE DIFFERENTIAL COVER, POTENTIALLY DAMAGING THE HOSE.
Consequence:
POWER STEERING FLUID LEAKAGE IN THE PRESENCE OF AN IGNITION SOURCE CAN RESULT IN AN UNDERHOOD FIRE.
Remedy:
DEALERS WILL INSPECT AND RELOCATE, OR REPLACE AS NECESSARY, THE POWER STEERING HOSE AND CONFIRM TORQUE OF THE HOSE FASTENER AT THE STEERING GEAR END. THE RECALL BEGAN ON SEPTEMBER 20, 2004. OWNERS SHOULD CONTACT DAIMLERCHRYSLER AT 1-800-853-1403.
Potential Units Affected:
438391
Notes:
DAIMLERCHRYSLER CORPORATION D18
_________________________________

Recall ID # 02V215000 - FUEL SYSTEM, GASOLINEELIVERY
Recall Date: AUG 08, 2002 Component: FUEL SYSTEM, GASOLINEELIVERY Model Affected: PT CRUISER Potential Units Affected: 345436 Recall Date:
AUG 08, 2002
Model Affected:
2002 CHRYSLER PT CRUISER
Summary:
ON CERTAIN PASSENGER VEHICLES, THE FUEL PUMP MODULE MOUNTING FLANGE COULD LEAK FUEL IF THE VEHICLE IS INVOLVED IN A ROLLOVER CRASH.
Consequence:
FUEL LEAKAGE IN THE PRESENCE OF AN IGNITION SOURCE COULD RESULT IN A FIRE.
Remedy:
DEALERS WILL INSTALL A SECONDARY SEAL OVER THE FUEL PUMP MODULE. OWNER NOTIFICATION BEGAN AUGUST 12, 2002. OWNERS WHO TAKE THEIR VEHICLES TO AN AUTHORIZED DEALER ON AN AGREED UPON SERVICE DATE AND DO NOT RECEIVE THE FREE REMEDY WITHIN A REASONABLE TIME SHOULD CONTACT DAIMLERCHRYSLER AT 1-800-853-1403.
Potential Units Affected:
345436
Notes:
DAIMLERCHRYSLER CORPORATION B23

I then went to the Chrysler website to check my VIN number for available recalls.

Chrysler Recall Website:
Chrysler - Contact Us

Here are your results
VIN Number: 3C8FY68B92T310180 Vehicle Description: CHRYSLER PT CRUISER LIMITED 4-DOOR HATCHBACK Model Year: 2002
No Incomplete Recalls or Customer Satisfaction Notifications Exist

NOTE:
Results returned represent unperformed or incomplete Recalls and Customer Satisfaction Notifications initiated by Chrysler Motors Company LLC at the time of your inquiry.


I'm not sure what they mean by "No Incomplete Recalls or Customer Satisfaction Notifications Exist "?

As a used Chrysler PT buyer, will my local Chrysler dealer still honor and repair these recalls?

None of these recalls sound good and I want my daughter to be in a safe car. My daughter is pretty bumbed-out right now and so am I. It's Sunday, so I can't conatact the guy I bought it from. My daughter really likes the car, so I'm hoping that you guys can offer some guidance.

This is a great website and has helped me a great deal already.

Thanks
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  #2 (permalink)  
Old 11 May 2008, 12:51 pm
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Join Date: Sep 2001
Posts: 27,744
Default Re: Recall advice for used PT buyer

The wording is a little confusing but to me it sounds like the PT WAS taken in to take care of the recalls. They should be good for the life of the vehicle. I took my Vette in for a seatbelt recall that I found out about 12 years after the recall came out ( they tested the seatbelt and it was fine) so drop into any dealer and give him your VIN and let them tell you if the recalls still need be taken care of.

As far as your electrical issues and why your blowing fuses, it has to be tracked down to what's causing it. Take it back to where you bought it, raise stink, ask how it passed inspection and tell them it needs to be corrected before something bad happens and you sue the heck out of them for selling a faulty vehicle.

Welcome to the forum.
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  #3 (permalink)  
Old 11 May 2008, 04:46 pm
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Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 3
Default Re: Recall advice for used PT buyer

I found the problem.

That is after blowing a few more fuses and hearing a pop and seeing smoke coming from the left rear tail light area. I thought that I had popped a tail light bulb. When I pulled the tail light off to check the bulb, I found that someone had tapped into the wires and installed a trailer wiring harness. There is no trailer hitch installed on this car. After tracing the wires, I found that one of the harness power wires laying on the top of the muffler and had melted through. The pop I heard and smoke I smelt was from the little control box that was built into the tail light harness. I completely removed the harness and the repaired the splices. I replaced the fuses and now all is working fine.

I'm guessing that the car had this wiring harness installed so that it could be towed from an auction and was temporarily wired to the tow vehicle.

I think that this is a common practice for cars purchased at auctions. I just hope that they were properly towing it and did not screw up the drive train.

I think the panic is over, at least for today. My daughter and I took a long test drive and all is well. She loves her new "Barney" purple PT. I wish my first car was as nice as this PT.

I'm still going to check with my local dealer to make sure that all the recalls are accommodated.

Thanks again for the great information on the website and the help.
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Old 11 May 2008, 04:55 pm
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Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Chicago, IL
Posts: 357
Default Re: Recall advice for used PT buyer

Yeah. I'd take it back and make them fix ASAP or negate the sale. Most states let you have a 72 hour or so 'cool off' period to return a car. If your state has privatized inspections, where local repair shops issue the inspections instead of a state run facility, the dealership probably has an 'understanding' with the shop that did the inspection. I'd threaten to report them for fraud if they refuse to fix or take the return. That's why I don't trust used car lots. I only tried buying from a used lot once, and I got a call after three months that he couldn't 'find the title' and I had to return the car for a full refund. I either buy from a private seller or a major dealership now.

I'd diagnose it as a bad ground just based on the info you've given us.

This is your kid's safety though, so I'd take control of the situation NOW. Your kid is going to get rear-ended with broken tails ..... at the very least.

Last edited by lakersfan1; 11 May 2008 at 04:57 pm.
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Old 11 May 2008, 05:48 pm
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Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 3
Default Re: Recall advice for used PT buyer

Quote:
Originally Posted by lakersfan1 View Post
Yeah. I'd take it back and make them fix ASAP or negate the sale. Most states let you have a 72 hour or so 'cool off' period to return a car. If your state has privatized inspections, where local repair shops issue the inspections instead of a state run facility, the dealership probably has an 'understanding' with the shop that did the inspection. I'd threaten to report them for fraud if they refuse to fix or take the return. That's why I don't trust used car lots. I only tried buying from a used lot once, and I got a call after three months that he couldn't 'find the title' and I had to return the car for a full refund. I either buy from a private seller or a major dealership now.

I'd diagnose it as a bad ground just based on the info you've given us.

This is your kid's safety though, so I'd take control of the situation NOW. Your kid is going to get rear-ended with broken tails ..... at the very least.
Thanks for your input lalersfan1, but if you read my second post, I already found the problem and am pretty sure it's permanently fixed.

Looking back on the whole deal, it's very possible that the guy I bought the car from did not know of any existing electrical problems and the tow wiring harness power wire may have melted through after he had it inspected and after I had left his lot. This particular used car guy went out of his way to show me the few small imperfections on this car. I am also very skeptical of used and new dealers as well as many mechanics. In this case, I think that it was a careless harness installation that caused the problem. Don't think that I wasn't pissed about having this problem. It should not have happened, but it did. The good thing is, now I know a little more about the Pt's electrical system. I also went through the PT from top to bottom looking for any signs of leaks, wearing or previous repairs. All looks and operates very well and I think we got a pretty good deal overall.

Thanks again!
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Old 31 Jan 2009, 01:01 pm
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Join Date: Jan 2009
Posts: 1
Default Re: Recall advice for used PT buyer

Justin, thank you for doing a great job in trouble shooting your blown fuse problem. Yesterday I let my son-in-law borrow my 2002 pt, later he called me and said that the turn signals didn't work. last night I spent about 1 hour reading the pt manual and narrowed the problem down to the 15 amp fuse. I thought to my self that this was not going to be a walk in the park finding the problem. Later in the evening I started surfing the net looking for a little help and I stumbled acrossed your post. About 2 years ago I added a trailer hitch and the wiring ( did the work myself) this morning I took a drop lamp check going from one side of the car to the other and sure enought, the wire had falled on the muffler and the insulation was burned thru. I ran a new wire and routed it away from the muffler. Thanks again for the great post , it save me alot of time and money. I bought this car new in 2001 and still enjoy the great heated seat and the cool retro look. This is a very safe car for your daughter.
Max from Grand Rapids Michigan.
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Old 31 Jan 2009, 05:49 pm
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Default Re: Recall advice for used PT buyer

hello! welcome to the forum. im pretty new too, and i hope your daughter will really love her PT just as much as i did when my parents surprised me with one (im 18) its funny because i got the car on senior skip day. haha!
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  #8 (permalink)  
Old 31 Jan 2009, 08:35 pm
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Default Re: Recall advice for used PT buyer

So very glad you posted the cure to your problem - as you can see, it already helped someone else.
At 60,000 miles - I'd recommend getting the auto trans flushed - it helps prolong the life. Be sure they use ATF + 4.
Glad you fixed your problem.
BTW - I got my daughter a used PT, too, and she's put about 60,000 miles on it! ( I change the oil - Mobil1 - and had the tranny flushed, and did brakes,...)
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