: Brake fluid flush/change



ExRPO1
01-26-12, 10:59 AM
Hi to the few we have left on the forum!

So I've been going through my service book to see what will be required either before or at my third service, which incidentally, isn't due until mid August 2012. Noted that Cadillac state the brake fluid requires changing at the four year point, the same as SAAB 9-3's.

I'd wondered for the last couple of years just when my own car was built. I bought it as a 2009 model, but I'd already determined that the car must have been built in early 2008 due to the date stamp on the tyres, 0308 - 3rd week January 2008. For info, tyres fitted to new cars are almost always less than a couple of months old and so if you still have the original tyres on your car like I have, it will give a good indication. I finally found out today that the car was built 02 May 2008. Any Cadillac dealer will be able to tell you when your own car was built. Also be aware, for insurance purposes, you should make sure your insurer knows the production date of the vehicle as well as the spec date. I know I've mentioned it before in previous posts, but I bought the car as a 'new' delivery miles only vehicle in March 2010.

Anyway, now that I know that the car will definitley be four years old in May this year, I'll get the brake fluid changed to ensure I stay within warranty. Phoned around for quotes with most garages quoting 50 +vat. Finally found a local independent SAAB dealer who will do the job for 40 all in using genuine GM DOT4 fluid.

The point of the post is, if you're still under warranty as I am, please don't forget the brake fluid. It may require changing outside of your service anniversary date. After 4 years, I suspect the fluid will be suffering from mild moisture absorbtion and modern ABS systems don't like that.

ajp558
01-26-12, 03:22 PM
40 is a cheap deal as well. Not even worth the hassle of doing it yourself at that price from a Saab dealer.

I do wonder about the warranty though given the history of Cadillac and now Saab going bankrupt in Sweden. I just received a letter from Saab Reading that they are going to become a Kia dealer now although they will still service and sell second hand Saabs. It doesnt say whether that will also mean they will remain an approved Cadillac service shop.

ExRPO1
01-26-12, 04:26 PM
Yes, 40 quid, I was gobsmacked with such a low garage quote, but like he said to me, a litre of brake fluid, even GM's own brand, is less than a fiver and the job takes just 40 minutes max, so 40 quid is spot on. Plus, I'll get an invoice and he'll stamp page 23 of my warranty and service book (maintenance certification) to prove the job has been done. The garage I'm taking the car to, is nearly 20 miles away from where I live. I could have got the job done at a more local independent garage, but I wanted someone with plenty of SAAB experience to do the job and this place I'm going to fits the bill. Plus, he seemed incredibly happy to look after my Caddy. Funnily enough, there is a SAAB main dealer five miles closer to me, but they wanted with vat, 60 quid to do the job.

Concerning our Warranty. I wouldn't be too worried. It seems from conversations I've had with Cadillac sources, warranty work should not be affected. I've personally, got another 13 months to run on mine. Of course, as we are fully aware, there are very few approved Cadillac Service Centres in the UK and they are (I believe) the only places that warranty work will be permitted to be carried out because even under block exemption rules, independent garages can't claim warranty work back from Cadillac. Just a shame I've got either a 60 or 90 mile journey just to get warranty work done if required. Oh well!

Now that now the link with SAAB is effectively broken, spare parts might actually become easier to come by believe it or not. We'll have to keep an eye on that though!

Tong
01-27-12, 10:08 AM
Hi All .. there are still a few of us here!!!

I just had an intermediate service at my local garage (they have serviced my various cars for 12 years!) and they picked up on this and changed it without asking .. cost of the whole service with GM parts was 165 .. which I think is OK.
Just done a quick whizz (1,000 miles) around France and tell you what this is a great cruising motor!! I drove 7 hours on one leg and could still walk when I arrived!!! .. (average speed 72 .. average fuel 42.3) I know I'm a lead foot!!!
My warranty is up in December this year or in 10,000 miles (I know which will come first) : )

Best regards
TG

ExRPO1
01-27-12, 02:53 PM
Tong, glad to hear all is well with your own motor and you had a successful trip.

Spoke to the independent SAAB dealer who are going to do my brake fluid change again today and he's more than happy to do a full service on my BLS in August, hopefully considerably cheaper than my last two services!. Only thing is, he's not sure if his SAAB Tech 2 will be able to reset the service indicator. Said he'll give it the identical service a 2009, 9-3 would get.

Was looking through my service sheets today, to see what oil has been getting chucked in the engine and as you can imagine, very expensive stuff! I phoned a SAAB dealer and a Vauxhall dealer today as both the 9-3 and Vectra diesel are the same engine as my own, and both told me they use GM's own fully synthetic oil, Dexos 2, 5W 30. 5 litres of it costs just 23 (inclusive of postage) off the famous auction site. This is less than half the price of the stuff that has gone in on both the first and second service. If GM's own brand is good enough for a 9-3 and a Vectra, it's good enough for my BLS!

ajp558
01-27-12, 04:28 PM
Only thing is, he's not sure if his SAAB Tech 2 will be able to reset the service indicator.

I am sure that the owner manual says how to reset the service indicator just using the steering wheel buttons. I think it is just a menu option under "Settings".

The intermediate service looks to be just an oil and oil filetr change plus some visual checks and a reset of the service indicator. I have mine booked in with a local indie next week as I cant see the point in paying a Saab dealer through the nose, especially given the hassle which would mean a day off work whereas local indie will pick up and drop off.

ExRPO1
01-27-12, 05:40 PM
I am sure that the owner manual says how to reset the service indicator just using the steering wheel buttons. I think it is just a menu option under "Settings".

The intermediate service looks to be just an oil and oil filetr change plus some visual checks and a reset of the service indicator. I have mine booked in with a local indie next week as I cant see the point in paying a Saab dealer through the nose, especially given the hassle which would mean a day off work whereas local indie will pick up and drop off.

The garage I'm taking the car to are an independent but they specialise in SAAB. I've checked their rates and they are extremely competitive. I already phoned my local main SAAB dealer and I coughed politely when they quoted me. Trouble with taking my car to a more local independent 'we do any car' garage, is that they won't necessarily be used to working on SAAB cars frequently and whether we like it or not, our cars are more SAAB than anything else. Not only that, as my car is still under warranty, the SAAB indie has stated he will use only GM service items. I can't personally trust another type of independent unless I supplied all of the parts myself and tbh, I can't be bothered to do that.

Despite the garage being almost 18 miles away, they do a free collection and delivery service. I'm not going to take the mickey out of them and ask them to collect and deliver for the brake fluid change because it is a very quick job, but I may well let them collect and return for the service. My first and second service's were both effectively intermediate services because of the low miles my vehicle has so far done. I'm not even at 20,000 miles yet and I'm two years into ownership.

As far as the service indicator is concerned, I am aware of how to reset the service indicator if it is flashing using the ignition and brake pedal, but I think it is slightly different when setting the 'next service' reminder. I think that has to be done with Tech 2 and we're not sure if the SAAB Tech 2 can reset the same as Cadillac Tech 2.

Tong
01-28-12, 04:37 AM
Hi ExRP01 ,

ajp558 is correct you can reset the service indicator via the DIC .. I did mine no problem. It shows Full or Intermediate, is set at standard intervals (mileage) and shows the percentage of the interval remaining so whenever you set it it stays at the prescribed service time.

The nearest SAAB dealer to me is in York abt 28 miles but I live in the middle of nowhere so I am used to it.

Bought the BLS in Hull through Evans H and no way would I entrust it to them!
Best
T

ExRPO1
01-28-12, 06:12 AM
Guys, thanks very much for the info about the service indicator, that is obviously good news. Effectively then, unless either a warranty or diagnostic issue arises whereby Tech 2 is needed, I shouldn't have to worry too much about visiting the Cadillac dealer again. I'll keep all of my fingers crossed on that one!

Not taking my car to a Cadillac service centre, is a massive U turn for me. I was absolutely set on making sure the car went there for the first three years, but even I have to admit, with the recession on and the high(imo) servicing costs at the Caddy dealer, I personally can no longer justify travelling either 60 or 90 miles to get servicing work done. I'm really hoping this SAAB independent will be as good as some of the reviews I've read, the upcoming brake fluid change will be a taster. I have the promise he will only use GM service items which encourages plenty of confidence.

Tong
01-28-12, 06:52 AM
I think my strategy will be take to the local guys get them to check it over and then if they see any potential issues then take it to the Caddy dealer in manchester just before the warranty is up and get it done there .. but if no visible issues then I will not bother.

Once the warranty expires then we are on our own anyway!!!

Cheers
T