Bobby MSME

Spark Member
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Everything posted by Bobby MSME

  1. I concur! My spark 2017 LS is a peppy little car. The only thing not good is it is lot more noisier at speeds above 40 mph than other bigger cars I have driven. No problem with the CVT, actually I like there is only one gear shift at 40 mph instead of 2 or 3 or 4 with geared automatics. And that shift at 40 is jot jerky. The gas mileage is great so I have stopped worrying about gas prices. I stop to refuel when down to 1 bar on gas gauge and she drinks only about 7 gallons to fill her up. Speaking of sales scams, I was offered to win a 4 day cruise if I entered their contest. Except it was valued at $3960, which means if I win, that will be taxable income and I would owe IRS additional taxes based on my tax bracket. I can easily buy a 4 day cruise for 2 for the additional taxes I would have to pay. And I can choose the cruise I want instead what they would send me on.
  2. Nice job of an extremely detailed description of the car's components. Best luck. I have a 2017 Spark as well, and I love it.
  3. Only Rolls Royce cars receive 100% inspection for defects. Any mass produced car can never be 100% without problems, especially one of the cheapest cars on the market. Sorry to hear about your manual tranny. I am sure it was a fluke and the replacement will probably last 100k miles. The last manual tranny was in my 1964 Corvair. Never had a problem with any of the automatic transmissions since then, including 1967 Chevy Impala through current 2017 Spark with CVT. And driving in Chicago traffic for 37 years, I probably saved a few million manual gear shifts
  4. Thanks for your input, because I was thinking also of stretching the oil life beyond 100% with full synthetic which is what is installed currently.
  5. Is it correct to assume the oil life remaining number displayed in the information window assumes use of semi-synthetic oil? Because that is the recommended oil type as far as I know. So what happens if you use full synthetic or standard basic oil? I don't think the computer takes that into account.
  6. The only thing I wish was different in my 2017 Spark LS is location of battery. My other 2 recent cars, a 2007 Pontiac G5 and a 2011 Chevy HHR both had batteries in the trunk, far away from the engine heat, and original batteries lasted 7-8 years. Of course the Spark is small and has no room for a battery in the trunk.
  7. You are smart to avoid dealer mechanics after warranty expires! A good mechanic friend can't be beat!! 2 years ago a dealer mechanic screwed up my 2007 Pontiac G5 while doing a simple coolant change. He left an air bubble in the system, causing overheating which burned up exhaust valves. On my 2011 Chevy HHR I went to local Firestone shop to have my 7 year old coolant changed, and they did not screw up my car.
  8. I had that issue two times with our Olds Alero. It was the anti-theft system both times. Left us stranded at the most inconvenient times and places. Such a stupid system it is. Best anti-theft system is a steering wheel lock. I used that on my cars in Chicago, and never had a car stolen even in bad locations.
  9. Been driving my 2017 Spark LS with CVT for 20 months and it has exceeded my expectations because it was one of the cheapest cars on the market. It has good acceleration, adequate brakes, vision all around is out-standing, and the rear view camera in reverse gear has saved my neck! How about the gas mileage in city driving? It is very good as well. Just had my 2nd free oil change at the dealer today. I was told they installed full synthetic oil. Dexos 88865635 oil
  10. If it will make you feel any better, our 2011 Chevy HHR has power windows and lately they have become erratic. Manually cranked windows rarely mis-behave.
  11. That is normal behavior for my 2017 Spark. My solution is to avoid goosing the gas pedal when costing just below 20 mph. The CVT actually has a regular gear shift designed into it, and in my 2017 Spark the gear shift occurs at about 40 mph when accelerating smoothly. I am so used to CVT quirks by now, I rarely encounter them anymore because I have learned how do avoid them.
  12. Agreed, it was much easier to do on the golf cart. So...on the Spark, you may have to drill a small hole in the firewall to accommodate the wires. Just be careful to check both sides of the firewall so you do not end up destroying some component.
  13. When I needed a heated steering wheel on my riding golf cart, I connected directly to the battery terminals with wires running to the steering wheel cover which had heating elements. That power is always available. Electric Golf carts run on a bank of tandem batteries and are charged with a battery charger after the round of golf.
  14. You must have very good, driving habits for the Spark to last that long without any mechanical problems. Congrats! Not even the flimsy coolant overflow container made of plastic sprung any leaks? Heat shield on converter did not come loose and made a racket? The original battery still working? No oil leaks under the car? That CVT still working without slipping and making awful sounds? Check engine light never came on? Car never stalls in traffic? Original Brakes don't make grinding or squealing sounds? How long did the cheap original tires last? Alright, lets wait until you visit the dealership for some routine maintenance. They will find a way to screw something up!
  15. My 2017 Spark will be 2 years old next February. She is very quiet under 55 MPH, at 70 MPH and above it is mostly wind and tire noise. There are around 15,000 individual parts in a car. Dealer Mechanics are not rocket scientists. I can write a book detailing how many times they diagnosed the problem incorrectly in my 57 years of driving. The worst case was when driving home on a Friday evening from work, my 1971 Chevy Nova with a small V-8 began making hammering sounds. I stopped at a Chevy dealer and 2 mechanics did the "testing" on my car and their diagnosis was broken rod bearing inside the engine. They further said it would be best to do a complete engine overhaul. 72,000 miles on a 3 year old car, so I hesitated to leave my car there. They warned me "do not drive home, another 15 miles because the piston rods could break through the engine block". Cost estimate...$2500-3000 in 1974 dollars. Triple that for today's prices. Being a mechanical engineer, I began reading my car manual on the week end. It said if rod bearings are shot, the noise will be most prominent when accelerating or decelerating because of the reversing of clearance. That was not my car's symptoms. The noise was directly proportional to speed. According to the car manual, my problem indicates bad valve train. So Monday morning I visit a Buick dealer, told them I had a problem in the valve train, so please open the valve cover and take a look. 90 minutes later I was informed my car was ready. It was a bent rocker arm. Cost $130 (1974 $$). And there are at least half a dozen very bad diagnosis by dealer mechanics. I never drive into a dealer and say there is some sort of problem. I read up the car manuals, and then tell the tech what needs fixing. Another incidence when my car would not start on a winter evening in Chicago, at end of shift. I called a nearby repair shop and told them to pick up my car and replace the fuel pump because it won't start. The person on phone says "how do you know it is the fuel pump?". I knew because I had installed a large see through in line filter in the fuel line because those crappy bronze fuel filters used in chevy V-8's would clog up frequently. But the incident which takes the cake was I bought this brand new Chevy Impala 1967 to get ready for a vacation. I am still a greenhorn with car problems because this was my first new car. It was smooth at driving speeds but at every traffic light it was noticeable rough idle. I knew how smooth V-8's run on old cars, and mine was brand new. So I drive in to the dealer and leave the car. Pick it up next morning, and they said they could not find anything wrong, but they did clean the spark plugs and everything is fine. I am driving home and the car is still idling rough at traffic lights. I reach home, and floor the gas and look in the rear view mirror. There were white clouds coming out of the exhaust! So back again at the dealer and this time I had specific instructions. I told them the main gasket was bad and coolant was leaking into the cylinders. I pick up the car next day, and she was running as smooth as silk at all speeds. God, I loved those V-8's.
  16. That is the reason I liked cars from the 1960's. No electronics to fail and mess up the car. My guess is removing the hub confused the computer and it probably needs a reset.
  17. Is the battery original? If so, I would take RD's suggestion above and get a new battery.
  18. My WAG is there was something defective from the beginning. The expense of repair at this point may not be worth it unless you need to drive frequently on icy roads. With a stick shift you have inherently better control over the car than a slush box anyways. My suggestion would be to spend the money on good winter tires instead during snow season.
  19. I love my 2017 Spark LS with CVT for trips less than 100 miles round trip. I agree with Stevil that seats are not comfortable for old geezers like me for longer trips. Our other car is a 2011 HHR (chevy) and last year we did a 7000 mile trip in it and my butt came out of it without any pain. No problems at all so far with both cars, except both front doors of my Spark squeak a little when opened. That rear vision camera on Spark is a neck saver and adds to safer driving.
  20. Do not believe any unbelievable stories! If it is too good to be true, it is most like not true!! Car manufacturers are under big pressure by law, to maintain average gas mileage below a certain number. Do you really think GM would not put a cover on the lower air intake if that makes 50% jump in gas mileage? The story teller was most likely seeking attention, which his wife does not give him.
  21. Above post is the best because it is reality based. Everyone has different driving habits, use different grade and brand of fuels, weather conditions are different, and traffic is different. After 54 years of driving new cars, what I know for sure is that my biggest car expense after purchase is not gas mileage, but it is how many repair bills are incurred.
  22. Dunno about these objects in your pic, they don't look like keys even though they are on a "key" ring. But I like the looks of your line of fortune on your palm. I predict you will be driving a Mercedes or a Cadillac in future.
  23. Usually the belt driving the alternator and A/C. If you are still chugging around with the original serpentine belt, then that is more likely as belts get noisy with age & use.
  24. My relatives in AZ tell me they replace batteries every 3 years.
  25. Only one method possible to make any Spark instantly more zippy/responsive. But do NOT try it, it will destroy the engine in a short time. I will not reveal the method because a few of you might be tempted to try it