Problems with Chrysler and Ram - Warranty Issue - Fan Shroud Radiator Failure

By Oliver's on Aug 5, 2015 at 1:09 PM
  1. Oliver's

    Oliver's Drive Line & Gear

    Jul 16, 2005
    707 E. 12 1/2 St. Winston Salem NC 27101
    I have to voice my extreme disappointment and disgust with the Chrysler corporation, mainly the RAM division and it's customer service or lack there of.

    On Thursday the 30th of July, approx. 9:30am, my 10 month old, 2014 Ram 3500 Dually with just barely 20K miles on it suffered a catastrophic failure. While going up Black Mtn. in the western part of NC, I hear a loud plastic snap sound from under the hood. I pull over immediately, raise the hood to steam and antifreeze spraying all over the engine compartment. After letting it cool for about a half hour, I was able to see all the damage that had been done in those brief few seconds. A piece of the rubber that ties the two fan shrouds together had come loose. The fan sucked the 2" rubber cover into it, causing the fan to make severe contact with the radiator. The fan had cut a 4" circular slice into the radiator, loosing the bulk of the antifeeze on the shoulder of the road where I sat stranded, less than half way up the Mtn.

    After calming down a bit I called Ram road side assistance. The lady on the phone was very nice and made sure I was safely off the road. She arranged for a tow truck to take the dually to the nearest dealership (29 miles away), but stated they would only cover the first 20 miles of the tow and that the 24' enclosed trailer I was pulling would not be covered in the tow. She stated that I would have to call another tow service to take my trailer to the dealership. Not happy about that fact, but what could I do? The tow truck arrived and hour and a half later. We then begin to unhook the trailer, the driver asked what was in the trailer? An off road buggy he was told. Taking mercy on me, he said it can't be that heavy and once he loaded the dually on the roll back, he hooked the trailer up to the hitch on the roll back also. He then took the whole thing to the dealership in Asheville NC. I then paid my portion of the 29 mile trip, $100 dollars. No worries, the driver saved me that amount at least in another tow bill, I tipped him and he went on his way.

    Once at the dealership, they said they couldn't look at the truck until the next day, they were busy and I understand that completely. Meanwhile on the phone with Ram customer service, after hours of arguing and complaining, they agreed to get me a rental truck from the Enterprise rental car across the street from the dealership. While waiting for 5+ hours at the dealership, we start looking on google to see if this type of failure has happened before. Low and behold it has and quite a few times at that. Not only that, but there was a Chrysler Star case issued, stating "The Star case is S1307000002, release date 8/12/2013 covering the improper installation of the fan shroud at the factory." This resulting in the rubber coming loose and being entangled in the fan.…/1230249-radiator-fan-clutch-n…

    A little heads shroud

    2014 6.7 2500 Fan Shroud/Radiator failure - DODGE RAM FORUM - Dodge Truck Forums

    2013 dead on side of road - Dodge Cummins Diesel Forum

    Now 4pm we are just gettng back on the road to our original destination, still 3.5 hours away. Thinking everything was under control, I relaxed a bit. Friday came and went with no call from the dealership, thinking to myself, this is clearly a warranty issue, they have me covered. I didn't think much about it the rest of the weekend, again thinking this clearly was going to be a warranty issue and it will be covered.

    Monday afternoon I finally get a call from the service writer, stating that they are refusing to warranty the truck. They claim the damage was done by an outside force such as road debris. I am a mechanic by trade, have been for over 20 years, I own my own automotive service shop, I know what happened first hand and I'm not buying this cop out. Understandably angered by this, I immediately call Ram customer service back, just to be told that there is nothing they can do. Stating that the regional rep David Hooten had the final say and his decision could not be overturned. With over $1800 dollars worth of damage done to the truck, just giving in was not an option. So I call Ram CC back again, this time getting another person. I explained the situation to her and said let me see what I can do. Apparently all channels had not been followed, as they should have been. Breathing a sigh of relief and thinking surely someone with just a little bit of common sense would be able see what has happened and help me.

    Late the next day, Tuesday the 4th of Aug, I get a call back from the Ram CC folks, I can tell from the tone of her voice it wasn't going to be good news for me. She stated, after further review they would not be warranting my truck damage, again stating that it had occurred from an outside force, such as road debris. I again plead my case but realize I'm getting nowhere fast. I hang up knowing I am out of options. I need my truck back for work, it's 2+ hours away, I'm racking up a huge rental bill now that Ram will not be covering. I have no option but to pay the inflated dealership charge and get my truck back.

    What do I do?

    I write this in hopes of someone out there knowing who I can talk to and/or someone who can help, advise or otherwise.

    A little history on the truck. 10 months old, in the shop 12 plus times with various issues. 13 new tires, yes 13! 3 new wheels, countless TPS sensors, a cruise control failure, sliding rear window failure, driver side seat electrical failure, on top of the Ram factory recall warranty issues.

    Please share this with anyone who you think could be of help.

    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 5, 2015
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    1. BrianGreen
      I would probably start talking to a lawyer about enforcing the lemon law. If it has caused this much trouble already AND having to deal with shitty dealers, I would want away from the truck and Ram altogether.
    2. paradisePWoffrd
      I would talk to a lawyer strictly because it sounds like a good lemon law candidate.
    3. Oliver's

      Thanks for opening my eyes to that possibility, never entered my mind that I could be being cock blocked by a mechanic. It makes perfect sense, clearly the rep never even bothered to come look at it first hand, he, just like the ram cc people are only going by what they have been told by a lazy/unmotivated wrench.

      I guess the million dollar question is, what makes them give in and change their minds. They have already told me they couldn't produce the "road debris" and they don't have a clue how this could have happened. All they keep saying is an outside force caused this, Such as road debris, that there is no possible way the fan could come into contact with the radiator.

      If anyone can recommend a good lawyer, willing to take this own please send me their contact info.

      Thanks again guys!
    4. Blkvoodoo
    5. fordwheelinman
      6 or 7 years ago I'd have got really uptight and butt hurt over that. Now, a little older, little wiser, I've learned that I do my job the best I can and if people judge my level of competency, integrity, intelligence, and wrenching skill based on other douche dealer experiences, then it's their loss not mine.
      Oliver's likes this.
    6. Croatan_Kid
      I think what @Blkvoodoo is saying is that 95% of dealers make the other 5% look bad.
    7. Buminator
      Oliver's likes this.
    8. 1TONZR2
      I agree but a piece of rubber being slung around by a fan can! What did they say about the Star Case?
    9. Oliver's
      They acknowledged it, but said it didn't have anything to do with the damaged caused. Just more BS and responsibility dodging.
    10. YotaOnRocks
      I see what you did there.
    11. 1983Bronco
      You could always just get drunk.....I'm buying
      trailhugger, Oliver's and snappy like this.
    12. benXJ
      That sucks. Chrysler should have been out of biz 10 years ago.
    13. Oliver's
      Well, insurance is going to pay for it under Comp., they are having a 3rd party come in to estimate the cost of the repair before they pay though.

      2 weeks today in a rental, this bill is gonna sting!
    14. RatLabGuy
      Do you by chance have rental as a rider on your insurance coverage? Most people don't (not common by default), if you did they might cover that cost too.
    15. shawn
      It's too late to add it now... but the rental rider is stupid cheap. Like $8 or something.
    16. Oliver's
      It's not offered, at least on my policy, due to it being in the business name, therefore registered as commercial.
    17. 1983Bronco
      Dave I got a truck or two at the shop u can ride till yours gets charge
    18. ponykilr
      20 year dealership tech here (no longer one), Chrysler is simply going by what the dealership is saying. It's their call. Make enough noise and Chrysler will change their mind.
    19. benXJ
      if your insurance is gonna pay, then maybe there was some road debris damage, or something beyond just the truck itself falling apart. Car insurance companies don't want to pay ever, either. So if there was ANY way they could put it back onto the dealership/Chrysler, they would. What was the adjusters finding? The manufacturers usually work with upset customers, so it sounds like a dealership/management issue/miscommunication. Just wondering.
      Jody Treadway likes this.
    20. peewee
      Any time large companys start screwing me I file a complaint with the attorney general's office. They are on our side. Results aren't always quick but I've yet to file a legitimate complant that they didn't make right.
    21. Oliver's
      The adjuster found zero road debris or any evidence of any outside influence. The adjuster off the record said something "shady" was going on. That there were some circumstances that could not be explained logically. As a long time customer, they choose to help me out. As said insurance it treating this a comp claim, just like broken windshield or a deer strike.

      I agree though with the miscommunication part, or lack of communication on the dealerships part. I've spoken to everyone at Chrysler who will talk to me (some multiple times) and it all comes back down to the Regional rep, he has the final say. Trust me when I say they know they have an "Upset" customer.
      trailhugger likes this.
    22. benmack1
      I like the NC attorney general idea. I'd also be sure that dickhead regional rep was well aware you were not done pursuing this either. Not about reimbursement now, it's about poor business practices in not honoring a warranty. This shouldn't end with your insurance eating this. Somehow, that is also going to cost you anyway with increased rates. Probably not like a fault claim for collision but somehow you're going to get fuct. I'd also plaster this all over the cumminsforum and the TDR forums. I'd put said dickhead rep's name and number out there too so folks are aware of the poor customer service.
    23. BrianGreen
      Just because of the runaround, I'd probably still talk to a lawyer about the lemon law. Make Chrysler buy it back and pay the rental. They would probably settle out of court since the legal fees would be more than the cost of the truck.
    24. Buminator
      Just happened to think , you could try sending up a complaint with the better business bureau, they might be able to help, I've never had any experience with them but I've heard they have helped in similarish situations. Here's a link to the place where you can start a complaint. BBB Online Complaint System | Get Started
    25. shawn

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