Badly rattled by clunking
My 2012 Grand Cherokee Laredo diesel emits a terrible clunk-rattle noise through the entire rear of the vehicle when driven over small sharp undulations. I have been unsuccessful in my attempts to have the matter rectified through my dealer and Chrysler, which has offered to have new shocks fitted at my cost. Chrysler-Jeep’s final decision is: ‘‘It is an operational noise and not a fault and as such is not a warranty issue and that new shocks will not rectify the problem, it is a peculiarity with Self Levelling Shocks.’’ Where to from here to rid a $55,000 vehicle of this horrible rear-end noise?
Bill, email Yours is not the only report we’ve had of this ‘‘ clunk’’, so we contacted Chrysler to get input. They told us that they ‘‘ have had a small number of customer queries regarding a clunking noise over some road surfaces in Jeep Grand Cherokee models. As a result, earlier this month a service action was issued to address this customer satisfaction concern relating to 2011-2013 Grand Cherokees (Models without Quadra Lift suspension).’’ Chrysler’s fix involves the replacement of the rear shock absorbers, which is fully covered under warranty. Owners are encouraged contact their local Jeep dealer to have the fix carried out on their cars. SEE THE LIGHT Reference your comment about fitting aftermarket lights to the Hyundai i30, only kits that comply with the relevant design regulations regarding auto-alignment and lens washing should be installed. I should know. I installed aftermarket HIDs on my 2005 Suzuki Swift and was defected within two weeks based on the above criteria.
Richard Gordon, email Yes, a check on relevant laws would be a useful first step for anyone contemplating fitting aftermarket headlamps. THE GOOD OIL When I bought my Toyota Atara S recently the service department advised that the $130 capped service uses mineral oil and that it was better to upgrade to $179 so they will use synthetic oil. Can you please tell me any advantage using synthetic oil?
Kumar, email We asked Toyota for its recommendation. The reply that Toyota ‘‘ doesn’t specify that a particular type of oil be used, such as mineral, or synthetic oil, although we do provide specifications for the actual viscosity, as stated in the vehicle owner’s manual’’. Toyota’s view is that synthetic oil is a better quality oil, which is why it is more expensive and generally recommended by dealers. The mineral oil you would get in the $130 capped service is fine as long as it meets the viscosity specifications listed in your owner’s manual. Synthetic oil might be a better oil as Toyota says but it also contributes more to dealers’ coffers.
On the warpath: Jeep’s answer to ‘‘customer queries’’ is to replace Grand Cherokee rear shocks under warranty