Back From the Dealer - 2012 Jeep Wrangler Long-Term Road Test

2012 Jeep Wrangler Long Term Road Test

2012 Jeep Wrangler: Back From the Dealer

September 11, 2012


Our 2012 Jeep Wrangler is back from the dealer after having its horrible underhood screeching noise dealt with. I could tolerate it no longer. Bad as it had been in the video clip, it had become notably louder in the days that followed.

Because of other work commitments I wasn't able to take the Jeep to nearby Tuttle-Click Jeep in Tustin, California until after lunch on Friday afternoon. The service writer hesitated when he heard that I had no appointment, but I was willing to leave the Wrangler with them if my only option was to come back on Monday.

We briefly debated the source of the noise -- power steering, A/C, alternator, idler pulley or tensioner -- but there would be no way to tell for certain (and order any necessary parts) until a technician had a look. With no appointment I was told I was looking at a Saturday diagnosis, at best.

They called me Saturday with the diagnosis: a bad bearing in the left idler pulley. But the Jeep parts ordering system doesn't behave like Amazon and can't accept orders over the weekend, apparently, so the order wasn't going to go out until Monday. This, in turn, meant the part couldn't arrive until Tuesday, aka this morning.

The fix was quick once the part was in hand, and I got the call before lunch hour was over. Mike and I arrived to find a very quiet Jeep indeed, along with the expected warranty repair bill for zero, zilch, nada.

As for the time out service, I suppose the moral of the story is don't get sick mid-day on a Friday without an appointment. They were nice about it and they did a good job and all, but the lag time between all the steps was hard to stomach, especially with the central parts wearhouse no more than an hour's drive away

I can't see myself coming back to a Jeep dealer for work like this once the warranty period is over; I have to think an independent mechanic could have turned this around far quicker.

What say you? Do I expect too much?

Dan Edmunds, Director of Vehicle Testing @ 19.833 miles

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