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I have a 2007 Outlook XR 2wd with a little over 96,000 miles on it. We bought it a year ago now and everything was going great until three weeks ago. My wife was driving it home and had the check engine light come on and it was idling rough. We dropped it off at our local mechanic and they thought it was the variable timing control solenoids. They replaced all four of those for $800 and after driving it for a day the check engine light came back on. We took it back to them and they then thought it was the timing chain and actuators and wanted another $1900 to replaced those. We found some posts about the timing chain wear coverage and contacted our local gm dealer and they said to bring it to them and they would check it out and tell us if it would be covered. They looked at it and are saying the timing chains are bad and it is losing compression on all three cylinders on the rear bank. They are saying I could replace the one head but I would be better off to do the whole engine. My question is could this all be caused by the timing chain issues? I have been trying to look through posts and search the internet to see what others have see with the timing chain problems but most just talk about the chains themselves. It is weird to me that all three cylinders on the one side would have issues and not be caused by something else. I just can't believe I am going to have to put $8000 into a vehicle with under 100,000 miles on it.

Thank you for any help or advice
Jim
 

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I just got home from working a 13 hour shift so this is probably not the best time to write this but I felt maybe I should give an update and vent some about the issues with my Outlook. I have been working a ton of hours the past couple of weeks, so my parents have been nice enough to help me by calling GM and also handling things with the dealership I took the car to. We decided to go ahead and do the motor replacement, GM actually said they would cover part of it. We got the car back Wednesday night and everything seemed to be fine. My wife drove it Thursday to my sister's, which is only 30 minutes away and 10 minutes from her house the check engine light comes back on. They called the dealership and they said just bring it in and we will check the codes. My wife took it there this morning and they are now saying the catalytic converter is bad. They said it would be over $800 to do the one and they think the other one wont be far behind. So my thinking that after a month and a half of being without my wife's car while trying to find out what is wrong this thing and what to do with it was over, it is not. My mom is trying to get a hold of the person she talked to from GM originally to see what we can do about this now, but it is getting ridiculous. We had no problems with the car up to this point and when the check engine light came on originally we took it right to our mechanic. Everything has snow balled from there and I have bleed a lot of money into this car now all because of a problem that GM knows about, and it seems that the bleeding hasn't stopped. And with the money I have put into it now, I can't just get rid of it. I know every manufacturer has their problems and I am sure there are some good GMs out there, but this is really souring my opinion of GM right now.
 

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We are having the exact same problems! In October the check engine light came on. We took it in and the code read that the timing chains needed replaced. The GM Dealership quoted us $2000-$3000 to have it done but said it was weird for that to happen at 76,000 miles. Their suggestion was to clear the code and see if it comes back. It did. We took it to another shop for an oil change and had them check the code, not telling them that we already knew what it would come back with. Sure enough, it came back that the timing chains needed replace. However, this shop (not GM) said they thought that was a "special coverage" item and that GM would cover the replacement. REALLY?! Then why didn't the GM Dealership tell me that rather than quoting me $2000-$3000 to fix it. So, I called the Saturn recall phone number and they confirmed it was covered. I had the timing chains replaced in December 2014.

Last week, 5 months later, out of the blue, 2 blocks from home, the engine started making crazy sounds and shaking. We took it to the shop the next day, scared to drive it because of how it was acting. Then had it towed to the GM Dealership. They told us cylinders 1, 3 and 5 are leaking air. #5 was 98% leakage. They couldn't be sure of anything until they drop the engine out and see what is there. Their guess is that that best case they have to replace the valves ($3,500), worst case the entire head would need replaced ($4,500). What?! With 83,000 miles on it? I just can't believe it. So, I have kept pushing them for more info. I called the Saturn recall center phone number and they contacted the district manager for GM who contacted the branch. They have told me that GM "may" give us some assistance in our situation but we would have to take the first steps to get the problem fixed. So... 5 days later they gave us a free rental car and dropped the engine out the bottom and found the VALVE SPRING was broken which bent the valves and cracked the head... I still think it has something to do with the timing chains too but cannot prove it yet. I will though.... mark my word. :) They have also told us that it may be better to just replace the whole engine. $8000!!! Crazy!

Overall here is the chain of symptoms/diagnosis:
-Car shaking and idling bad
-Cyl #5 98% leakage
-Cyl #3 48% leakage
-Cyl #1 can't remember but not as bad leakage
-Lots of carbon build up
-Diagnosis: maybe change the valves
-Diagnosis: might have to change the left head
-Actual: Broken Valve Spring causing a broken valve and head on the left side


I'll keep you posted with what they tell me.
 

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Thank you for the reply. That is the same head that we were having issues with. I wonder if GM's timing chain problem is a problem with just the one side. I might have to call the dealer in the morning and see if our motor is still there or if they pulled the timing chain cover off. Then I could find out if it was just the one chain that stretched and maybe that would be some more proof for GM that this is THEIR problem. I feel like GM is saying "Yes we have a problem, yes we know about the problem, yes we will fix the problem, but sorry everything that happens because of the problem is not our problem." From what I understand the representative from GM told my mom that they would let the dealership charge them for the timing chain replacement and they could take that off of our bill for the motor replacement. Which the dealership has been great and working with us in any way they can. But the rep from GM is now saying that they don't think they can do anything about the catalytic converter now because they already offered us assistance. I don't want to sound like I am not thankful for GM helping to cover some of this because I know this could have cost me a lot more right now. I just feel like I am paying a lot of money for issues that stem from a problem they know they have.

Good luck with your Saturn, hopefully you have good luck with GM. With as many Outlooks, Traverses, Acadias, and Enclaves you see out there you would think they would not have all these issues that people are having.
 

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At the end of the day yesterday they told us that there is a 70% rule for warranty work. If the cost of fixing the single problem is 70% or more of the engine replacement cost, they will just replace the engine. They were putting together the bids for GM to look at yesterday. We should hopefully find out Monday how much, if any GM is going to cover. Then we will have to decide what to do.
 

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We are still waiting to hear back from GM about our catalytic converters. Partially why we decided to go with replacing the motor instead of just doing the head was because they gave us $4,500 as a minimum cost plus what ever broke or they found while tearing it apart. Plus I felt with the timing issue it might have messed up the rings on the pistons too. I really didn't want another, "well we fixed this but this is bad now". Which I guess now that they catalytic converters are bad I probably made the right decision.
 

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Finally heard back from GM on our catalytic converters. They are now blaming the catalytic converter on the brake master cylinder. They are saying I need new brakes and the master cylinder is leaking at that i what caused the catalytic converter to go bad. I know I need new pads and rotors, the shop I usually take it to said I was at 70% and they said the pads needed replaced they replaced the motor, but no one has said anything about the master cylinder leaking. And I am supposed to believe them that it is leaking on my catalytic converter? I just went outside to look and it doesn't even look like the exhaust runs anywhere near the master cylinder. This is starting to sound like they are wanting to do more work to make up for the things that they are going to have to replace. Up until this point I was happy with the dealership that we took the car to, but definitely not anymore. I will start another post to see if anyone else has seen this problem but I am so frustrated and angry with GM right now that I really just want to call one of the news channels and see if they would do a story on these problems with GM. This is just beyond ridiculous.
 

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Just had the engine replaced on my 2007 Outlook about a month ago. It had 118,000 miles on it, oil changed every 5,000 miles and then I'm driving down the highway when the check engine light comes on, and all of a sudden the "Engine Power Reduced" error message comes on and the car dies. Towed it to the dealership, and they said it was a timing chain issue. The chain has off by entire revolution, and it threw everything off. The entire engine needed to be replaced.

I did my research and found out that the there was special coverage on the timing chain. I called GM to check and yes, my vehicle was covered. I called my dealership, but they had changed their tune claiming that there was no oil in the engine which threw the timing chain off. GM will not cover any of the costs of the $7100 repair. There was no way that my vehicle was out of oil before the breakdown. The oil wasn't leaking out on my driveway, there was no check engine light on prior to the breakdown. Been dealing with this issue as well as many more (replace power steering cooler and pump, replace the seal on the transfer case) that were caused from the engine replacement since the middle of May, and GM has been no help.

Any advice?
 

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MDEdwards said:
Just had the engine replaced on my 2007 Outlook about a month ago. It had 118,000 miles on it, oil changed every 5,000 miles and then I'm driving down the highway when the check engine light comes on, and all of a sudden the "Engine Power Reduced" error message comes on and the car dies. Towed it to the dealership, and they said it was a timing chain issue. The chain has off by entire revolution, and it threw everything off. The entire engine needed to be replaced.

I did my research and found out that the there was special coverage on the timing chain. I called GM to check and yes, my vehicle was covered. I called my dealership, but they had changed their tune claiming that there was no oil in the engine which threw the timing chain off. GM will not cover any of the costs of the $7100 repair. There was no way that my vehicle was out of oil before the breakdown. The oil wasn't leaking out on my driveway, there was no check engine light on prior to the breakdown. Been dealing with this issue as well as many more (replace power steering cooler and pump, replace the seal on the transfer case) that were caused from the engine replacement since the middle of May, and GM has been no help.

Any advice?
Just a word to everyone - these engines have been known to "Consume" oil.

I believe GM spec allows for 1 quart every 2000 miles and they still consider it OK. Not sure where it all goes - I know some of it is blown back into the air intake.

I know this is not the norm for most vehicles I've owned (all GM btw) but something you have to keep on top of on these lambdas - check the oil regularly and top it up if necessary.
 
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