Last post on Nov 14, 2012 at 4:44 AM
You are in the Chevrolet HHR
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Chevrolet HHR, Car Buying, Wagon
#2 of 167 HHR Love-Hate Relationship
May 18, 2006 (11:43 am)
I purchased an HHR LT in February of this year. Since then, I have come to love the look and thoroughly enjoy the ride and the performance. The gas mileage is good and it's definately fun to drive. It's been taken on several trips into the States and found to be very comfortable and quiet. As well, I successfully moved my son back from college and was totally surprised at how much cargo we could stuff into the back with the seats down.
As a result, I love my HHR!
However...since buying it, I have had the following things go wrong:
1) a leak into the front passenger side floor (the sunroof drainage hose was kinked and had to be bypassed)
2) the sunroof was damaged/defective (it had to be replaced and now the new one rattles like crazy)
3) the headliner had been damaged while it was being assembled at the factory (it had to be replaced and doesn't fit like the original)
4) the chrome trim on the driver's side mirror whistles (apparently a design flaw)
5) the antenna hits the sunroof at highway speeds (I replaced it with a stubby)
6) there is a creaking sound in the dash on the passenger side (apparently too much plastic)
7) I had to have my windshield replaced because it cracked from one small stone hit
8) the mirror (with compass/self dimming feature) had to be replaced and
9) the steering wheel column is now rattling (there is a TSS bulletin that just came out and the dealer has ordered the part and is going to fix it).
I also had to put running boards on shortly after I purchased the HHR as the paint was being pitted by the salt/sand on the roads.
As a result, I also hate my HHR.
I gave up a reliable Mazda and returned to GM to buy the HHR and have discovered that nothing has changed since my last Chevy...same old quality control issues. I've spent so much time at the dealership in the last few months that I'm thinking of applying for a job there!!!
Hopefully my problems are now over and I'll be able to enjoy driving my HHR past the dealership instead of to the dealership.
Toronto, Canada HHR Owner
#3 of 167 Re: HHR Love-Hate Relationship [greyfox_dw]
May 18, 2006 (3:51 pm)
Dude (or Dude-ette), you bought the first year, probably the first few months, of a brand new product - of course there are teething problems! According to Consumer Reports, even Japanese makes have teething problems. (I do say this with a certain amount of smiling at myself, since my threshold of pain is REALLY low and I trade cars at the drop of the hat, although I keep promising myself to slow down and stop it.)
The key is to shop around to find a supportive service advisor/dealer, and research your issues on the internet since often you might be telling THEM about an issue that's new to them, and pretty soon everything will be fixed. Well, maybe not pretty soon, but probably soon enough.
In terms of fix-it stuff that isn't up to factory snuff, ask to talk to the general manager or someone further than the service advisor in the food chain, and also call the Chevy customer service department (listed on the Chevy owner's website). You DO deserve to have dealer work match factory work. Remember that cajoling almost always works better than threatening, stay patient, and good luck!
#4 of 167 Re: HHR Love-Hate Relationship [greyfox_dw]
May 19, 2006 (4:34 pm)
Wow, that is a lot of stuff even in it's first year.
Have you seen or heard about the car of the year-the rattle trap, loud, Honda Civic. The most over-rated car of the year it should be. The auto writers here in the states have this big facination with Honda's for some reason. The cars styling is nothing to brag about, and the long wait for the introduction showed just another clone like Japanese car. The people out West in California are the ones responsibible for the majority of the sales, and that's probably were a lot of the auto writers live. I seriously thought the HHR had a good shot at the car of the year.
The windshield thing doesn't make sense to me. I have worked at quite a few auto dealers over-the-years, both domestic and Japanese, and new auto glass sucks. I don't know why but it does. I don't know if the manufactures buy from the same company or what. When I had mine replaced about 7-years-ago, after a rock incident, the replacement was only like $120 installed because it was a common windshield; additionally, I have gotten hit many times since then and nothing happens but a scratch. It has, like probably most aftermarket windshields, a lifetime warranty.
#5 of 167 Re: HHR Love-Hate Relationship [poncho167]
May 19, 2006 (5:46 pm)
I just want to pound this home....my last 3 GM vehicles were/are head and shoulders above my last two Japanese pieces of crap! & this from a guy who admits his brand new 78 vette was a piece of crap. I don't work for any company affiliated with GM.
#6 of 167 Re: HHR Love-Hate Relationship [smogdung]
May 20, 2006 (4:58 am)
People need to pound that point home in other discussions more. It's not your earlier GM anymore. Some folks in the Hondas discussions and Toy discussions act as if HoToy and other foreign brands didn't build anything that rusted away or was simple as a rubber band back in the 70s, 80s and early 90s. But they sure harp on their 1976 Chev that had a new transmission at 75K.
#7 of 167 Re: HHR Love-Hate Relationship [greyfox_dw]
Jul 14, 2006 (10:54 am)
Well, after replacing a part on the steering column, as per the TSB, it didn't work and the noise got worse. My dealer's service manager decided to replace the entire steering column to see if that would do the trick.
That was it for me...as you can see from my original post I have spent a lot of time at the dealer getting things fixed and replaced since I purchased my HHR LT in February 2006. So, I went to the sales manager at the dealership and told him to take his piece of "----" back and get me into something else.
After I told him about everything that had gone wrong with the HHR, they worked out a deal where I was able to buy into a Chevy Equinox for a bit more money...If I could have, I would have gotten out of GM all together!....
I must admit that the HHR was the worst mistake I have made in purchasing a vehicle. Over the years, I have owned Hondas, Pontiacs, Chevs, Mazdas and even a Jeep Liberty (in it's first year of production) and never has so much go wrong on a vehicle in the first few months of owning it.
Surprisingly, the sales manager at the dealer still says they are having trouble keeping them in stock...I say: how come they still have the same two in the showroom that were there when I bought mine in May and you rarely see them on the road?
By the way, most of the problems being discussed here in the forum are now well known to GM. The water on the floor is from the poor quality hose they used to drain the water from the sunroof - it is too soft and kinks easily. The dash noises are from too much plastic on plastic. The chipped paint on the rear quarter panels need to have the sideboards put on to prevent. The antenna is too long and flexible and hits the sunroof/roof. The steering column rattles/squeeks. The mirror on the driver's side whistles because of the trim/design. The windshield's are of poor quality and chip/crack easily. Let's hope they address all of these issues when they put out the 2007 model.
I'm hoping the Equinox, that is now in it's second/third year of production, will be a better buy. But I must admit that, given what I have seen and heard (in this forum), I'm not holding my breath.
No wonder GM is having so many problems...maybe the rumoured merger with Nissan would be a very good thing. They might learn something about quality control.
Anyways, this former HHR owner from Toronto is now switching over to the Equinox forums and I sincerely hope all of you HHR owners don't end up having the same problems I did. Cheers and good luck.
Former HHR/ New Equinox Owner
Toronto, Ontario Canada
#8 of 167 Re: HHR Love-Hate Relationship [greyfox_dw]
Jul 14, 2006 (6:28 pm)
Nissan has some unreliable newer vehicles (espeically trucks/SUVs) and Renault has their own reliabilty problems, so I don't see how mixing that mess with GM will improve quality of future HHRs.
#9 of 167 Re: HHR Love-Hate Relationship [greyfox_dw]
Jul 15, 2006 (10:09 am)
.that were there when I bought mine in May and you rarely see them on the road
In this area there are many on the roads. So I certainly don't agree that you rarely see them on the road.
Plastic on plastic in dash is always a problem in the designs. It requires some careful troubleshooting, usually a skilled technician for troubleshooting on the part of the dealer helps. One problem is that the squeaks and noises can sound like they're coming from somewhere different than they really are inside the car or inside the dash. It can take a real sleuth to find the true source. Many cars have hAd trouble with noises.
#10 of 167 Re: HHR Love-Hate Relationship [greyfox_dw]
Jul 16, 2006 (4:22 am)
I don't recall ever reading about plastic rattling, this is a new one to me and the windshield cracking is common on all new cars. The glass on new cars comes from the same place as most automakers get their glass. There are only a couple of companies they all use. I would agree new glass cracks easily for whatever reason, and the replacement glass I have had on vehicles never cracks under the same circumstances so that makes me wonder. Replacement glass has a lifetime labor and parts warranty but factory doesn't..
The HHR is a well made vehicle and has been praised for its workmanship. I see them pretty commonly on the road as much as three different ones a day.