Should I sell my envoy due to rust?

Shana7711

Original poster
Member
Nov 29, 2012
82
Turns out tho that after i spent the money on a new HU, along with new tires and rims...altogether about 1300-1400 dollars...I ended up having to get some things fixed while in MI over my break (traveled home to see family since i go to school in NC). After a thermostat fix of some kind and alignment, and a new battery, I spent about 350.
THEN!! Today i found out that the gas i have been smelling...the leak was from the fuel pump and one of those is gunna b 325, along with labor another 200. After taxes (and oil change and some other little part), i am spending another 600, sucks to find this out when you already spent your extra money...

So, the mechanic actually recommended i get a new (used) car since there is a lot of rust on/under this one and he figures it will cost me a lot in the next 2.5 years while i finish school. I am skeptical of his opinion (and please take into account that he is NOT trying to sell me anything. love the place i go to, its family owned and they always help me out) because if he has only been a mechanic in the south (im not sure) then he may not know what "a lot" of rust is on a car that is from MI. since i had it looked at in michigan i am getting ahold of the person there and asking them about the rust and what they thought too.
It is an 04 Envoy SLT, leather/sunroof/...new tires and HU :lipsrsealed: with about 120,000 miles on it. its in great condition i think, you can see photos on my page.
LAST TIME I EVER BUY A USED CAR THAT LIVED IN THE NORTH!!!
What i want to know is does anyone else have a car from around 2004 that spent its whole life in the north with all the snow and salt? have you had any problems? Is it worth trying to get another SUV, or should i just drive it til im outta college? i just dont wanna be putting $1000 into it a year, on top of a car payment.
PS. if i do buy another car, it will have to be $10,000 or less. I owe about 5000 more on this one, and KBB puts it at about 6k trade in, 8k private sale. another site (NADA i think) put it closer to 9k :confused:

THANKS ALL!

(also sucks that i didnt get this looked at in MI before i left because i could have got it done for at least half price on the labor, and maybe a better deal on the part too, since my brother-in-law manages a GM dealership there. since it was only a smell, and not leaving a spot, we figured it was a hose or something :sadcry: if i had more time to spend there i probably would have had it checked, oh well...)
 

Sparky

Member
Dec 4, 2011
12,927
Got any pics of the problem areas?

My 2002 is from the north and my liftgate is rotting, all 4 doors at the lower seams, my rear wheel well arches are rusting through (lip is totally gone on the driver side), and a few other spots inside the rockers, floor pans, and a bad spot above the passenger tail light. Sucks!!!

Frankly it depends on what you plan on doing with yours. Me, I'm driving mine until it either finally wears out and dies or the body falls off the frame lol. And I'm not sweating some of the small mods that I've done or still plan to do since I can easily move those to the next Trailblazer I get.

And here's the other thing. Rust can be looking bad but it can also take a while to get actually "bad" bad. When I bought mine 2.5 years ago I thought that the rear driver door (the worst of the 4) would be really showing the rust on the outside in short order. Aside from some brown visible on the lower edge if you look for it it still hasn't come through to the outside yet. Granted mine is a dark green color so it hides some of it better than a light colored vehicle.
 

Shana7711

Original poster
Member
Nov 29, 2012
82
i am going to see if they will hoist it up for me tomorrow so i can take a picture of the underside of the car, where most of the problems are i guess. But like you i also have rust on the inside of the doors, i dont think much, if any, has made it to the outside yet.
 

northcreek

Member
Jan 15, 2012
3,320
WNY
I think that you hit the nail on the head.Apparently this mechanic is not familiar with the amount of rust that we get in the rust belt states.I would think that a worst case 2004 would still be road worthy for a while.
And yes if buying another used car you would be wise to get one from the south or south west,although you have to be careful because many vehicles sold in those states are bought cheap up north and tranplanted.I found this out by doing an Auto Check on some Texas SUVs and most were believe it or not...from Michigan,Mike.
 

Shana7711

Original poster
Member
Nov 29, 2012
82
northcreek said:
I think that you hit the nail on the head.Apparently this mechanic is not familiar with the amount of rust that we get in the rust belt states.I would think that a worst case 2004 would still be road worthy for a while.
And yes if buying another used car you would be wise to get one from the south or south west,although you have to be careful because many vehicles sold in those states are bought cheap up north and tranplanted.I found this out by doing an Auto Check on some Texas SUVs and most were believe it or not...from Michigan,Mike.

Yea i would definitely have a carfax before i bought anything! another perk of having GM dealership manager in the family is i can get those free lol
 

Ed H

Member
Oct 18, 2012
167
I would keep it. Aside from the fan clutch and maybe some annoying electronics, what could go wrong? You have it almost good-as-new aside from some rust. Who cares about a little rust, especially on the underside. My '02 spent its life in Northern Illinos where they salt the streets if they THINK it might snow. Yeah, the underside rusts, but who cares?

Not only that, but you may never recoup the money you have into it. I would not take a loss like that. Enjoy the truck! I know you were loving it not too long ago. Go back to that happy place! :raspberry:
 

NewfieEnvoy

Member
Jan 25, 2012
525
A friend of mine drove his Honda Element from Newfoundland to Houston for his workterm. He visited the Honda dealership while there for some service and his Element put on a show when it went up on the lift. Every mechanic was in under it at one point and they called him out into the garage to try and figure out why his rig looked like a rust boat anchor underneath! Every mechanical job in Newfoundland requires an acetylene torch, your either going to heat it up or cut it off. So our mechanics are use to it, Houston mechanics didn't want to touch it with a ten foot pole. So that being said we try to buy used vehicles from the south or from areas where they don't use salt on the roads. However, we don't shy away from local rigs its just something else to keep in mind. I wouldn't jump the gun and don't let one southern mechanic cause you to give up on your truck. Maybe take some pictures, but definitely get the opinion of a northern mechanic. I'd like to know what he believes is going to be causing you so much trouble in the next 2.5 years due to rust? A rust check and undercoat, usually $200-300 around here, will halt the rust for a couple years if done right.
 

Magyver

Member
Apr 9, 2012
64
If the rust isn't actually through the underbody, you might want to look into an oil undercoat, if you can find someone who still does that. Where I live you have to hunt, but there are shops that use motor oil cut with kerosene, and just spray the whole underside liberally with the mixture, then let it sit, and hit it again. After a 24 hours to drip dry, you have a hillbilly undercoat job that inhibits further corrosion because the oil/kero soaks in to the rust and (I think) doesn't allow oxidation to continue. Traditional undercoating needs clean metal, and if someone tries to sell you that they're ripping you off. If it runs good, and you still owe that much, I say keep it and make it your mission to learn how to fix it yourself, and use the money you save to pay down the loan. Best of luck!
 

Denali n DOO

Member
May 22, 2012
5,596
I'd prob keep it too, surely it can't be that bad to wanna give it up after all you've done to it so far, Krown is what they use here, it's not just oil and it won't drip off all over your driveway. My friend does this Krown process every year on an 03 grand prix and it is rust free and looks like it was new. He bought a used 06 Sierra with a lil rust but he started putting this on and it hasn't spread. I'm sure a good application of something in all the right places would at least slow down whats already started. Here's a link Kitchener - Waterloo Krown Rust Control to Krown, You can click through an application process on their web site to see the important areas to be treated.
 

CaptainXL

Member
Dec 4, 2011
2,445
I notice my doors are rusting a little at the bottom as well. Actually my wifes 07 TB doors rusted a lot more in three years in Michigan than the 5 years mine was in southern Ohio. It had basically no rust on it when I had it drove up here to buy it.

If mine ever get really bad I would either patch or replace the doors than get rid of the truck. A new SUV is selling for well over 40K now so it makes sense to repair rather than replace.
 

Shana7711

Original poster
Member
Nov 29, 2012
82
OK, so i went and picked up my car today...almost $700 bill...i took some pictures of the underside of the envoy and the worst parts seem to be the control arms and the back discs/circle things behind the breaks, not rotors lol. I have pictures below. Other than this, most everything else looks okay i think, no more immediate things "should" go wrong :/
one of the nobs on top of the fuel pump broke off when he was replacing it. but it was leaking from both of those nobs.
View attachment 25831

Front control arms
View attachment 25833

Back circle wheel thingy
View attachment 25836

Other Misc Pics
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...And Finally...The bill :sadcry:
View attachment 25842

so given this info, im now mainly worried about the control arms, even though they are thick and will not rust through right away. If some piece on them breaks off the whole things may need to be replaced? $500+ per side i believe.
And the circle things in the wheels, not sure the thickness of those or the price.
 

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Matt

Member
Dec 2, 2011
4,025
What rust?? LOL That's nothing...mine looks about the same.
 

meerschm

Member
Aug 26, 2012
1,079
with the fuel pump done, everything else should be ok. you are lucky, I paid the local GM dealer to change my pump, (somehow I thought that GM might help with the cost) my bill was $1800. I live in VA but have driven north to ski/visit.and a few trips to the Outer Banks (probably worse for the rust since ocean spray exposure is coupled with warm temps)

you should keep a close eye on things and be a little OCD on checking fluids. every time you gas up is not too much, if you ask me.

also keep a good eye on the brake disks and pads. (looking for rust)

some folks have seen transmission oil cooler lines rust out and leak, if you catch it while it is seeping, no big deal, but if you miss it and drive without fluid in the transmission, it does not like it. I changed out mine out of caution after my fuel pump went

some also have had the power steering lines or power steering cooler (in front of the radiator) rust and leak. not good if it happens. but it might not.

if you have not done so, you should service/change fluid in the differentials and transfer case (if you have 4wd)

also change/cycle the power steering fluid(empty and refill the resevoir a couple timies)

You also can flush the brake fluid to replace with fresh and remove the old stuff.

you also should figure out if you can get the spare tire off, or if the mechanism has rusted out.(likely) if not, just make sure you keep an eye on the tires and have your cell phone handy


these maintenance activities can help keep you busy while you put off studying.
:smile:
 

jrSS

Member
Dec 4, 2011
3,950
Your fine. Keep the truck and enjoy. That's normal rust in the salt belt. Mine underneath is just as bad.
 

NewfieEnvoy

Member
Jan 25, 2012
525
Matt said:
What rust?? LOL That's nothing...mine looks about the same.

Agreed! That's nothing. Mine was the same before I soaked it in asphalt undercoat. She smelled like a bucket of tar for a week but the metal can't breath now :smile: Maybe get a good oil based undercoat and forget about it.
 

northcreek

Member
Jan 15, 2012
3,320
WNY
NewfieEnvoy said:
Agreed! That's nothing. Mine was the same before I soaked it in asphalt undercoat. She smelled like a bucket of tar for a week but the metal can't breath now :smile: Maybe get a good oil based undercoat and forget about it.

I did a few vehicles with a mixture of ATF and STP(for stickyness) and it worked great.The only downside is if you like to work on your own stuff it's really messy:hissyfit:
 

Voymom

Member
Feb 3, 2012
2,523
That's nothing! Definitely have seen worse. If it worry's you that bad just spray paint the underside so you don't have to look at all of the rust lol. It won't do any good mechanically but it will improve cosmetics, again that's if it bothers you that bad.
 

Billdaman

Member
Jan 19, 2012
32
Shana7711 said:
THEN!! Today i found out that the gas i have been smelling...the leak was from the fuel pump and one of those is gunna b 325, along with labor another 200. After taxes (and oil change and some other little part), i am spending another 600, sucks to find this out when you already spent your extra money...

If my memory serves me right that gas leak that you are describing is part of a RECALL for vehicles in the northeast. Plus the recall repair is good for another 100K miles regardless of ownership changes. I had the fuel pump recall repair done for free on my truck and the stealer screwed up my filler tube to the gas tank in the repair process and I got the tank replaced also NC (although it was a nightmare to get GM to pick up the tab) Your should have a dealer run your VIN
 

Boricua SS

Member
Nov 20, 2011
3,080
Ohio
that rust is completely normal for a northern vehicle... if they are taken care of, garage kept when being parked at night, etc..., then rust like that is not a cause for concern... like others have said... you know your Voy is mechanically sound now... rust is cosmetic (unless it gets to the point of being completly eatin through), so i would drive it through college, then look to get rid of it... maybe not even then...

i have a 2001 Grand Prix GT as my Daily Driver... my mother bought it straight off the showroom floor with only 3 miles on it back in late 2000... it now has 130,xxx and only one spot of rust inside the rear door (see pic below)... the car was garage kept everyday and was her daily driver for 124,xxx miles... it is mechanically sound, and for all intensive purposes, drives as smooth as my SS does (not bad for a 12 year old vehicle and not to mention the mpg's :yes:)... but it has been well taken care of.. parts have been replaced with OEM replacements, and general maintenance has been kept up on (my father works at a Chevy dealership, and they have done all the work on the vehicle)... don't let the stereotype of "all northern vehicles are bad" detour your thoughts of buying one if/when the time comes...

2012-11-30151422.jpg
 

Shana7711

Original poster
Member
Nov 29, 2012
82
So it was warm out today, 76 in NC, and I had to use my air...to find out that only half of my car has air! The passenger side is heat only, FML. Haven't had a chance to look into it much yet cuz I worked all day :sadcry:. But I saw that it could b a "actuator", which can cost 600 to fix. My dad mentioned maybe a fuse, I would love for a cheap fix...
Any comments? I am ready to drive this damn truck off of a bridge and into a very deep lake...
 

northcreek

Member
Jan 15, 2012
3,320
WNY
Not being a wise ass but, you are aware that it is a two zone system and that there are separate controls for driver and passenger?...Mike.
 

Shana7711

Original poster
Member
Nov 29, 2012
82
northcreek said:
Not being a wise ass but, you are aware that it is a two zone system and that there are separate controls for driver and passenger?...Mike.

Yea...lol. I tried even turning it to heat and back to air, still nothing but heat :sadcry:. doesnt matter if i just use driver side/auto passenger or if i actually turn on the passenger side, heat all the time...
 

CaptainXL

Member
Dec 4, 2011
2,445
Shana7711 said:
I am ready to drive this damn truck off of a bridge and into a very deep lake...

Did you really think an 04 model "anything" would be maintenance free? Ha. Be prepared to work on it until you get rid of it or it dies.

It's like a marriage. You need to be patient because the old lady is always work. lol
 

eutechnyx

Member
Mar 31, 2012
375
Take this from a Guy that has spent the last 17 yrs in Florida that rust is not that bad at all. I see nothing to worry about especially anytime soon. Drive your truck and enjoy it.
 

Shana7711

Original poster
Member
Nov 29, 2012
82
CaptainXL said:
Did you really think an 04 model "anything" would be maintenance free? Ha. Be prepared to work on it until you get rid of it or it dies.

It's like a marriage. You need to be patient because the old lady is always work. lol

I guess I'm not used to it since I have not had anything wrong with it since I bought it 2.5 years ago
 

Jkust

Member
Dec 4, 2011
946
Well if that's an 04 it could very well have been put in service in 2003. Having lived in MN my whole life, rust throughs like that used to be very common. Cars rust far less than they used to and we still use the same cheap road salt here. My biggest problem throughout the 90's driving 1980's cars would be the body would rust out before it stopped running. I generally don't see that level of rust through but again you are potentially nearing 10 years old and who knows the previous owners may have been lax about washing it. Would I get rid of it...well I don't know your personal situation but I won't keep or buy a car with that level or rust.
 

Magyver

Member
Apr 9, 2012
64
That rust is actually not as bad as most for your climate and age. Someone should start a "how rusty is your rig?" Thread and then you won't feel so bad about yours.
 

Sparky

Member
Dec 4, 2011
12,927
Magyver said:
That rust is actually not as bad as most for your climate and age. Someone should start a "how rusty is your rig?" Thread and then you won't feel so bad about yours.

No, don't, I'd probably win :sadcry:
 

northcreek

Member
Jan 15, 2012
3,320
WNY
Sparky said:
No, don't, I'd probably win :sadcry:

Yeah....you know that you are living in the salt belt when a hole rusts through your oil pan and differential cover.I've had that happen on vehicles that I have owned in the past...:hissyfit:..Mike.
 

Sparky

Member
Dec 4, 2011
12,927
Good thing these trucks have aluminum pans. My original rear axle did rust through its cover however.
 

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