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Old 26th February 2013, 07:22   #2056
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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Originally Posted by chevelle View Post
Here is my all white LED replacement project on G35.

I replaced puddle lights, map lights on front and rear. It was very easy. Just need a flat tool to pop up the plastics holding the lights.
Did the bulb change on Sunday, here are the daytime pics could not take at night but suffice to say that its much brighter than the stock ones & takes a while to get used to

Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America-old-map.jpg

Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America-old-new-map.jpg

Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America-led-map.jpg

Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America-door-led.jpg

Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America-door-old.jpg

Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America-trunk-led.jpg

Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America-trunk-old.jpg

Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America-rear-old.jpg

Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America-rear-led.jpg

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Old 26th February 2013, 07:57   #2057
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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Originally Posted by Jeroen View Post
I think you should read the owners manuals first. It is very likely to give you the possible cause and necessary next steps. When you take it to the shop, always tell them the full story. And ask them what amber lights means. If they don't give the answer as in owners manual take you car to the next shop. Either they haven't got a clue or they're out to get you.

And be carefull, brakes are pretty essential!
Jeroen
It turned out to be a faulty sensor. Apparently it is not covered even under extended warranty, but after some arguing that it happened so quickly after the purchase, the dealer did it for free.

The handbrake does work after all, when fully engaged . I still think it is weak but I didn't want to divert the focus today. Guess I will get that checked with an independent shop.

Thanks all!

By the way - anyone have experience with "Bavarian Motorsport" in Milpitas? I can see good yelp ratings and positive comments. Is it a good idea to take bimmers outside the authorized dealership, for small things? Apparently authorized dealerships are very glib in quoting four-digit figures and most of it turns out to be labor. Guess I got lucky in getting this done for free, but thinking about future incidents... the path I am thinking is:

- Go to dealership where purchased
- Check whether warranty covers
... if yes, proceed to get it done
... if no (if car is in driveable state) go to independent shop instead.

What say? And what about scheduled maintenance?

Last edited by rajushank84 : 26th February 2013 at 08:02.
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Old 26th February 2013, 08:31   #2058
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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It turned out to be a faulty sensor. Apparently it is not covered even under extended warranty, but after some arguing that it happened so quickly after the purchase, the dealer did it for free.
?
How can a faulty sensor not be covered under an extended warranty. I'd read the policy very carefully if I were you. Some of these extended warranties are near scams. How can it not cover parts? What does it cover?

In fact it should even be covered under your regular statutary rights as a consumer. At least in most States I believe.

Glad it got fixed though.

Jeroen
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Old 26th February 2013, 09:59   #2059
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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I
Selling a Camry at 120-130k miles is not a difficult task, but the one which has been recorded to have done 169k miles stands to fetch a very low price and your loss probably in that case would be more than this 1000$ deposit.
Here is the update - Dealer gave me a letter stating that local garage mis-typed the Odometer when a oil change was done and the car does not have any Odometer issue when sold to me. The letter also had VIN and date of sale in Dealer Letter head and Used Car Manager Signature.

He also showed me a clean title, Inspection certificate and Emission certificate.

Friends told me that in US, no dealer will give such a hard copy letter even if they feel there is a slight issue and recommended the pruchase. So that boosted my confidence and went ahead bought the car

I am not bothered about resale, God willing if I can be in US for 2 to 3 Years and the car serves me good, I am perfectly ok. Took the car to a temple and did pooja on Sunday.

Went through the service manual and found out that there 3 or 4 instances of hand written oil change/tyre rotation notes by the previous owner. The miles and dates are in exact sync and confirms Typo Error.

Have reached out to Carfax to try and update the incorrect record. They have asked for Title and Plate details. Once I register the car, I will work with Carfax. Dont know the process yet.

The car drives smooth and silent. Going through the manual and understanding the features and it is my

First car in US - A 84000 mile, single owner - '05 Camry - Color Sand mica


Thanks you all for your time and support.
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Old 26th February 2013, 18:51   #2060
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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Originally Posted by rajushank84 View Post
It turned out to be a faulty sensor. Apparently it is not covered even under extended warranty, but after some arguing that it happened so quickly after the purchase, the dealer did it for free.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeroen View Post
How can a faulty sensor not be covered under an extended warranty.

I'm also surprised, I thought his car was a BMW CPO with extended manufacturer warranty to 6 years/100k miles. Most CPO warranties extend manufacturer warranty for a few more months and powertrain warranty to 100k miles etc. All sensors should be covered in that case because you recently bought the BMW.

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Originally Posted by Ananthang View Post
Here is the update - Dealer gave me a letter stating that local garage mis-typed the Odometer when a oil change was done and the car does not have any Odometer issue when sold to me. The letter also had VIN and date of sale in Dealer Letter head and Used Car Manager Signature.
Congratulations on your first car. Enjoy and drive safe. Hope you get the Carfax fixed as well. Just goes to prove that carfax can be erratic as well. A lot dealers provide carfax free with a used car, now you know why your dealer didn't give you one for free. Had you not bothered to check the carfax paying for it yourself, you wouldn't even have noticed this odometer mismatch error.
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Old 26th February 2013, 19:22   #2061
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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Originally Posted by rajushank84 View Post
It turned out to be a faulty sensor. Apparently it is not covered even under extended warranty, but after some arguing that it happened so quickly after the purchase, the dealer did it for free.

The handbrake does work after all, when fully engaged . I still think it is weak but I didn't want to divert the focus today. Guess I will get that checked with an independent shop.

Thanks all!

By the way - anyone have experience with "Bavarian Motorsport" in Milpitas? I can see good yelp ratings and positive comments. Is it a good idea to take bimmers outside the authorized dealership, for small things? Apparently authorized dealerships are very glib in quoting four-digit figures and most of it turns out to be labor. Guess I got lucky in getting this done for free, but thinking about future incidents... the path I am thinking is:

- Go to dealership where purchased
- Check whether warranty covers
... if yes, proceed to get it done
... if no (if car is in driveable state) go to independent shop instead.

What say? And what about scheduled maintenance?
As long as service is covered in warranty, I'd stick to dealer for service. Nevertheless I'm sure there are good local mechanics, but would they honor your warranty?
Also wont your warranty go void if external mechanic works on your car?
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Old 26th February 2013, 22:20   #2062
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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Wouldn't it be better to bike?? My team leader bikes in subzero temps, he says that is alright as long as there is no snow/ice on the road.
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Originally Posted by amitoj View Post
I have not seen anyone on a bike here in the past three months!
I guess if the roads are dry and you are well layered up, biking is possible. Heard somewhere up in Canada people actually ski to work!
Don't forget the salt on road. when you have only two wheels and one of them is responsible to keep you upright, you can't be too careful.

I take my bike out every few weeks in winter to keep the fluids running and had a little bit of rear (drive) wheel wobble while accelerating on a signal turn because of salt.
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Old 27th February 2013, 00:42   #2063
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

I had mentioned elsewhere about a thread on a different forum that had been started by a cop wherein he fields questions from others regarding law enforcement etc.
I normally dont post links from other forums but I am sharing this one here because I found this thread to be quite informative and educational, specially for a new driver like me. And others new to this country also might find it helpful.

The very first question he answers (seriously) is whether cops have a fixed number of tickets that they must write out every month. And then gets pounded by a flurry of other questions that he patiently answers.

http://www.chargerforums.com/forums/...d.php?t=141242
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Old 27th February 2013, 05:18   #2064
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

Does anyone use a tire pressure gauge or a tire inflator? I'm planning to get one of these, probably a digital tire inflator like this - http://www.amazon.com/Slime-40022-12...gauge+inflator

Any suggestions or ideas?
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Old 27th February 2013, 07:08   #2065
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Arrow Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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Originally Posted by Gandhi View Post
Does anyone use a tire pressure gauge or a tire inflator? I'm planning to get one of these, probably a digital tire inflator like this - http://www.amazon.com/Slime-40022-12...gauge+inflator

Any suggestions or ideas?
I had a tyre inflator that worked off the car battery. This type is good for a small top up but it takes a looong time to fill air if you're running very low. It finally broke down and I didn't bother replacing it.

Also, the car engine needs to be running as they can drain the battery fairly quickly.

The electric ones (unfortunately, non-portable) are more powerful and fill up quickly.

Be sure to buy an accurate pressure gauge as the gauges mounted on the inflator usually aren't calibrated.
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Old 27th February 2013, 07:21   #2066
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

I use a portable inflator from 2006 bought from walmart for 15 $ or so. mostly use it for car, bikes, football etc. it has an analog meter which I find fairly accurate when I compare it with my TPMS reading. I usually prefer to fill at home when needed since I read the pressure off the TPMS almost every week, usually twice an year.

If I was to buy one again, I would go with an analog gauge.
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Old 27th February 2013, 08:11   #2067
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Originally Posted by "/ref=sr_1_4?s=automotive&ie=UTF8&qid=1361922017&sr= 1-4&keywords=tire+pressure+gauge+inflator[/URL

Any suggestions or ideas?
Try this...free pickup from sears and costs around 20 bucks....savings reflected once the item is in the cart

http://m.sears.com/productdetails.do...0050830x000545

Or

http://m.sears.com/productdetails.do...0050830x000545
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Old 27th February 2013, 09:02   #2068
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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Originally Posted by vineethvazhayil View Post
I'm also surprised, I thought his car was a BMW CPO with extended manufacturer warranty to 6 years/100k miles. Most CPO warranties extend manufacturer warranty for a few more months and powertrain warranty to 100k miles etc. All sensors should be covered in that case because you recently bought the BMW.
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Originally Posted by kraft.wagen View Post
As long as service is covered in warranty, I'd stick to dealer for service. Nevertheless I'm sure there are good local mechanics, but would they honor your warranty?
Also wont your warranty go void if external mechanic works on your car?
It is not CPO. I purchased warranty with the car but it is not a certified car.

Actually the conversation went like this: the SA, looking at the car said it could be a couple of things like brake pads or brake sensor, usually turns out to be the brake pads and it costs 1100 bucks if that is indeed what is wrong. Needs diagnosis to confirm. Then I asked him if thats going to be covered since I bought the car recently, and I also have extended warranty. He said no, brake pads are wear & tear and no warranty covers that. About getting the dealership to cover it, he said lets check with Sales and we got into a conversation with the guy who sold me the car. That guy basically made apologetic gestures but what he said is, the car was sold "as is", wasn't certified and it is difficult to cover brake pads. He said he could've talked to his manager if it had come on the day I drove the car off or the next day, but six weeks is too much.

I told the service advisor to diagnose it and let me know what the issue is. Then after a couple of hours he came to me and said "Car is done - turned out to be the brake sensor and not brake pads, and we have covered it for now since it is so close to the purchase. Its in the car wash and should be available shortly". It could be that warranty could have covered it but they didn't take it that far. Not sure. I didn't want to argue since they had the car almost ready at no cost . Also I was kinda getting late to work and probably not thinking straight.

Thanks kraft.wagen - I need to check with the warranty provider about getting it voided if serviced outside. Oh and by the way, the warranty is only for parts that fail - not service (maintenance).

Last edited by rajushank84 : 27th February 2013 at 09:22.
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Old 27th February 2013, 21:38   #2069
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

Occasional 3 row vehicle

A friend of mine is in this dilemma, and am sure I maybe in it too in some foreseeable future - when we have kids. So, he has a SUV, the CR-V and a sedan, the civic. Between him and his wife and one kid, they manage with these two cars. His parents visited from India for 6 months, no problem, 5 people and a car seat can be easily managed in a CR-V, especially if you are not big sized adults.
Now the tricky thing is when another family visits them that has a kid. He has a brother who lives in a different part of the US and they are also a three member family. Everytime they visit each other, they have to either drive two vehicles, or rent a minivan or so because there are 6 people. Neither of them have any plans of having another kid. They don't want to drive minivans because for the stated purpose (which happens once or twice a year), having such a big vehicle is not very sensible. So, he is in a conundrum as to what vehicle can he get, which is not huge, has an available third row seat which can be used for small adults/children, is not frighteningly fuel inefficient and is reasonable on the wallet to buy (new or used).
I'm sure some of you may have faced the same situation. What would you recommend as good options?
I told him to try out the last gen RAV4 with the optional 3rd row or the highlander from the Toyota stable. What else is in the market? Dodge Journey? Any small crossovers with 3 row of seats? Mazda 5?
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Old 27th February 2013, 23:04   #2070
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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I told him to try out the last gen RAV4 with the optional 3rd row or the highlander from the Toyota stable. What else is in the market? Dodge Journey? Any small crossovers with 3 row of seats? Mazda 5?
The first unique car which Comes to my mind the the Merc E station wagon.
It has a small seat, which is good for 2 kids and folds down into the luggage area. The E class third row is backwards facing

There are the usual SUV's , Honda Pilot, 4runner, Highlander, Sorento etc.
Acura MDX, which is another desi favorite.

RAV 4 & Mitsu outlander also has 3 row seating, But not sure whether that is comfortable enough.
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