• Report: #127287

Complaint Review: AC Delco - GM

Thank You

Read how Ripoff Report saves consumers millions.

  • Submitted: Thu, January 13, 2005
  • Updated: Sun, January 02, 2011

  • Reported By:Palm Bay Florida
AC Delco - GM
Http://www.acdelco.com/ Nationwide U.S.A.

AC Delco - GM Battery Leaking Acid Complaint ripoff Nationwide

*Consumer Comment: poor maintenane

*Consumer Suggestion: RE: AC Delco Technical Support Team

*UPDATE Employee: AC DELCO Technical Suppory

*Consumer Comment: Something else concerning side post batteries (AC Delco or other)

*Consumer Comment: Something else concerning side post batteries (AC Delco or other)

*Consumer Comment: Something else concerning side post batteries (AC Delco or other)

*Consumer Comment: Something else concerning side post batteries (AC Delco or other)

*Consumer Comment: Something that may be of interest regarding AC Delco batteries

*Consumer Suggestion: get another brand

*Consumer Suggestion: Get a third party battery.

*Author of original report: I do not go to a 3rd party because they cannot do warranty work under which my vehicles fall.

*Consumer Comment: Why keep going back to the dealer.....?

*Consumer Comment: UPDATE AC Delco.

What's this?
What's this?
What's this?
Is this
Ripoff Report
About you?
Ripoff Report
A business' first
line of defense
on the Internet.
If your business is
willing to make a
commitment to
customer satisfaction
Click here now..

Does your business have a bad reputation?
Fix it the right way.
Corporate Advocacy Program™

SEO Reputation Management at its best!

I'm not going to mention any names here, because I realize that some people are "just doing their jobs".



My wife and I purchsed 2 Saturn vehicles from the Saturn Dealership in December of 2000, they were 2001 models. I have owned 3 Saturns prior to this purchase because I honestly believed in the company and it's quality of vehicle. What I have since discovered is that GM uses faulty batteries to run and operate the vehicles they sell. The battery they use is AC Delco (which is owned by General Motors - something I was not aware of until this afternoon).

In 2002 my car would not start. Upon opening the hood I discovered that the positive connection to the battery was wet and something had been leaking out, battery acid. I had to get the vehicle towed to the dealership, but in the process the guy doing the tow had failed to put the car into neutral. I pointed this out to him and he told me something to the effect that he had been doing this for years and he was doing it right. Black marks were made on my driveway as a result and after the battery was replaced I was told that there was also damage done to my brakes.

Fast Forward to September of 2003. My wife and I moved to Central Florida. She was about to go to work and came back into the house to tell me her car would not start. I went out and sure enough, the EXACT same thing happened. Battery Acid had leaked out. The good side, no evident damage appeared to have been done and EVERYTHING was covered under warranty. The battery was replaced and we were told it had an 18 month warranty.

Fast Forward to September of 2004. I am driving my car along the road and it suddenly dies on me. Coasting to the side of the road I begin to freak out a little. I turn the car off and then sit for a moment then try to start it. It starts, so I immediatly take it to the Saturn Dealership. Upon opening the hood, guess what? The positive connection was yet again corroded. It's a lucky thing I was not driving on the interstate that day! They had to change the battery, but this time it was pro-rated to me. I spent $69.95 for that plus $3.13 for a bolt, plus who knows how much for the install, I had some other work done so the install price is not itemized.

Fast Forward to today, January 13th. My wife is again about to go to work and comes back to tell me her car won't start. Before I even look, I can already assume it's the positive connection leaking acid. I went down and took a picture of it, which is what you see here. I called the Saturn Dealership and they tried to tell me that it was not covered under warranty, that from September of 2004 to now exceeded 18 months, I tried to correct his math, but he assured me I was wrong. My math tells me it's 16 months, but what do I know? I was also told that the warranty on my wife's car only ran for the first 3 years, or 36,000 miles. Odd how I was holding in my hand the Service Plan Agreement for her car that stated we had a 5 year/60,000 mile warranty coverage.

He also told me that towing and install would not be covered under the warranty either. I called my wife at work (she took my car) and explained this all to her and we both agreed that it sounded like a crock. She called them and then called me back and told me that someone in the Service Department said that both the battery and the install would be covered under the warranty.

At this point I became very confused and called them back. I was now told what my wife had been told; that the battery and the install were covered under warranty, but that we had to figure out some way to get the car towed there, the towing would still not be covered.

I got off the phone with the dealership and called the Saturn 800-number for roadside assistance, the same number we had called the previous 3 times this had happened. I gave them my VIN number and asked about my warranty and the lady told me that towing WAS covered under my warranty.

I hung up and called the dealship to let them know my car would be brought in. They told me that their computers were down and they would have to take my information down manually. Within an hour and a half after hanging up with Roadside Assistance my wife's car was towed to the dealership.

I've yet to hear anything from the dealership in regards to my car, but I can honestly say that my faith in General Motors is almost gone. I cannot understand how I can get such a run-around, how they can outfit their vehicles with a battery that obviously has some issues, and yet they have not done a recall on the batteries to fix the issues!

Can you imagine driving you car with you family on the interstate then all of a sudden it dies on you? What kind of lawsuit do you think the parent company of AC Delco would face in an instance like that? Instead I guess the would rather replace the bad battery with another model that will do the same thing.

I can guarentee that I will post a followup to this after I hear what they have to tell me.

David
Palm Bay, Florida
U.S.A.

Click here to read other Rip Off Reports on AC DELCO

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 01/13/2005 07:37 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/AC-Delco-GM/nationwide/AC-Delco-GM-Battery-Leaking-Acid-Complaint-ripoff-Nationwide-127287. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

Ripoff Report has an exclusive license to this report. It may not be copied without the written permission of Ripoff Report.

Click Here to read other Ripoff Reports on AC Delco - GM

Search for additional reports

If you would like to see more Rip-off Reports on this company/individual, search here:

Search Tips
Report & Rebuttal
Respond to this report!
What's this?
Also a victim?
What's this?
Repair Your Reputation!
What's this?
REBUTTALS & REPLIES:
0Author 13Consumer 0Employee/Owner
Updates & Rebuttals

#1 Consumer Comment

poor maintenane

AUTHOR: Dr. john - (U.S.A.)

MOST consumers don't realise that they must perform maintenance on batteries and that a side terminal battery can EASILY be ruined by over torqueing the bolts. If the complaintant needed to replace a bolt; BY DEFINITION the battery had NOT been properly. ANY manufacturer of a side terminal battery would give this consumer the same result unless they change their service.

Respond to this report!
What's this?

#2 Consumer Suggestion

RE: AC Delco Technical Support Team

AUTHOR: Danny - (United States of America)

I own a 2007 Chevy Tahoe and only have two years with the vehicles and 58,000 miles, and the battery keeps dying out on me.  I contacted your Toll Free number and spoke to one of your Associates on 12/04/09.  I explained that my GM 36,000 mile limited warranty was up and I only had two years and 58,000 miles on the battery and noticed that the ACDELCO battery on my vehicle has a 6Year warranty sticker on it.   I was told that ACDELCO does not cover batteries that were purchased with the vehicle, and the 6year warranty on the batter is not valid.  Why lie to consumers by placing a 6year warranty sticker on the battery if ACDELCO can NOT back it up?  This is false advertisement!

Respond to this report!
What's this?

#3 UPDATE Employee

AC DELCO Technical Suppory

AUTHOR: Ac Delco Tech Support - (U.S.A.)

We are the AC Delco technical support team. At AC Delco, we are committed to provide our valuable customers with the best services and assist them with any technical matter. We thrive to constantly improve our products, services and technical support and for over 100 years, your comments have helped AC Delco to make quality parts. For any question, assistance or suggestion, call our Toll Free number 1-800-ACDELCO (1-800-223-3526).
Respond to this report!
What's this?

#4 Consumer Comment

Something else concerning side post batteries (AC Delco or other)

AUTHOR: Chris - (U.S.A.)

In addition to what Tom stated (nicely done I must say), I'd like to add my two cents concerning side post batteries, both AC Delco and aftermarket equivalents.

I am an ASE Master Certified technician working in General Motors dealerships for over 17 years. One of my areas of expertise was electrical (body and engine). I have replaced so many side post batteries that I have lost count. The majority of the replacements were due to the acid leaking from the positive terminal while others were just plain dead (sulfated plates, dead cell, etc.). Of the leaking batteries replaced, I can really only find two reasons for leaking/failure:

1) Negative cable loose or poor connection - A lot of these batteries were original from the factory and probably 90% of these vehicles had a very loose negative battery cable at the battery. Another concern was technicians using anti-corrosion rings around the terminals. Most of these are a very poor fit and really do little help in combating acid leakage. Most of them are mis-installed and stuck in between the cable and terminal, causing a poor connection and putting the terminal in a bind. A good clean terminal and clean tight cable is all that is needed to insure proper connection. No anti-corrosion solutions, be it a gel or a ring, should be used.

2) Battery cables overtightened - A good number of these leaking batteries were also replacements. In order to help keep the numbers up, some dealers (and independent shops) will have lesser paid personnel replace batteries. The cable connection on a side post battery should be clean and tight, but not tight enough to strip out the battery bolt or actually break the positive or negative terminal loose from the battery casing, which most were in this case.

While I can sympathize with your woes concerning how the situation was handled by the service personnel, AC Delco batteries are not totally to blame. And in case you were wondering, newer GM vehicles are using batteries with top mounted terminals that help eliminate this concern.

Respond to this report!
What's this?

#5 Consumer Comment

Something else concerning side post batteries (AC Delco or other)

AUTHOR: Chris - (U.S.A.)

In addition to what Tom stated (nicely done I must say), I'd like to add my two cents concerning side post batteries, both AC Delco and aftermarket equivalents.

I am an ASE Master Certified technician working in General Motors dealerships for over 17 years. One of my areas of expertise was electrical (body and engine). I have replaced so many side post batteries that I have lost count. The majority of the replacements were due to the acid leaking from the positive terminal while others were just plain dead (sulfated plates, dead cell, etc.). Of the leaking batteries replaced, I can really only find two reasons for leaking/failure:

1) Negative cable loose or poor connection - A lot of these batteries were original from the factory and probably 90% of these vehicles had a very loose negative battery cable at the battery. Another concern was technicians using anti-corrosion rings around the terminals. Most of these are a very poor fit and really do little help in combating acid leakage. Most of them are mis-installed and stuck in between the cable and terminal, causing a poor connection and putting the terminal in a bind. A good clean terminal and clean tight cable is all that is needed to insure proper connection. No anti-corrosion solutions, be it a gel or a ring, should be used.

2) Battery cables overtightened - A good number of these leaking batteries were also replacements. In order to help keep the numbers up, some dealers (and independent shops) will have lesser paid personnel replace batteries. The cable connection on a side post battery should be clean and tight, but not tight enough to strip out the battery bolt or actually break the positive or negative terminal loose from the battery casing, which most were in this case.

While I can sympathize with your woes concerning how the situation was handled by the service personnel, AC Delco batteries are not totally to blame. And in case you were wondering, newer GM vehicles are using batteries with top mounted terminals that help eliminate this concern.

Respond to this report!
What's this?

#6 Consumer Comment

Something else concerning side post batteries (AC Delco or other)

AUTHOR: Chris - (U.S.A.)

In addition to what Tom stated (nicely done I must say), I'd like to add my two cents concerning side post batteries, both AC Delco and aftermarket equivalents.

I am an ASE Master Certified technician working in General Motors dealerships for over 17 years. One of my areas of expertise was electrical (body and engine). I have replaced so many side post batteries that I have lost count. The majority of the replacements were due to the acid leaking from the positive terminal while others were just plain dead (sulfated plates, dead cell, etc.). Of the leaking batteries replaced, I can really only find two reasons for leaking/failure:

1) Negative cable loose or poor connection - A lot of these batteries were original from the factory and probably 90% of these vehicles had a very loose negative battery cable at the battery. Another concern was technicians using anti-corrosion rings around the terminals. Most of these are a very poor fit and really do little help in combating acid leakage. Most of them are mis-installed and stuck in between the cable and terminal, causing a poor connection and putting the terminal in a bind. A good clean terminal and clean tight cable is all that is needed to insure proper connection. No anti-corrosion solutions, be it a gel or a ring, should be used.

2) Battery cables overtightened - A good number of these leaking batteries were also replacements. In order to help keep the numbers up, some dealers (and independent shops) will have lesser paid personnel replace batteries. The cable connection on a side post battery should be clean and tight, but not tight enough to strip out the battery bolt or actually break the positive or negative terminal loose from the battery casing, which most were in this case.

While I can sympathize with your woes concerning how the situation was handled by the service personnel, AC Delco batteries are not totally to blame. And in case you were wondering, newer GM vehicles are using batteries with top mounted terminals that help eliminate this concern.

Respond to this report!
What's this?

#7 Consumer Comment

Something else concerning side post batteries (AC Delco or other)

AUTHOR: Chris - (U.S.A.)

In addition to what Tom stated (nicely done I must say), I'd like to add my two cents concerning side post batteries, both AC Delco and aftermarket equivalents.

I am an ASE Master Certified technician working in General Motors dealerships for over 17 years. One of my areas of expertise was electrical (body and engine). I have replaced so many side post batteries that I have lost count. The majority of the replacements were due to the acid leaking from the positive terminal while others were just plain dead (sulfated plates, dead cell, etc.). Of the leaking batteries replaced, I can really only find two reasons for leaking/failure:

1) Negative cable loose or poor connection - A lot of these batteries were original from the factory and probably 90% of these vehicles had a very loose negative battery cable at the battery. Another concern was technicians using anti-corrosion rings around the terminals. Most of these are a very poor fit and really do little help in combating acid leakage. Most of them are mis-installed and stuck in between the cable and terminal, causing a poor connection and putting the terminal in a bind. A good clean terminal and clean tight cable is all that is needed to insure proper connection. No anti-corrosion solutions, be it a gel or a ring, should be used.

2) Battery cables overtightened - A good number of these leaking batteries were also replacements. In order to help keep the numbers up, some dealers (and independent shops) will have lesser paid personnel replace batteries. The cable connection on a side post battery should be clean and tight, but not tight enough to strip out the battery bolt or actually break the positive or negative terminal loose from the battery casing, which most were in this case.

While I can sympathize with your woes concerning how the situation was handled by the service personnel, AC Delco batteries are not totally to blame. And in case you were wondering, newer GM vehicles are using batteries with top mounted terminals that help eliminate this concern.

Respond to this report!
What's this?

#8 Consumer Comment

Something that may be of interest regarding AC Delco batteries

AUTHOR: Tom - (U.S.A.)

Hi David,

I have read your comments and understand everything that you have said. I can shed some light on the frustrations you are having, if it will help at this point in time. As an ASE Certified Master Technician working in an AC Delco TSS (Total Service and Support) 7 bay independent repair shop, I am more than qualified to say the following:

AC Delco has had a long history of making durable, dependable batteries; some of the best on the market. Back when AC Delco batteries were manufactured by Delphi using AC Delco/Delphi technology, a typical OE (Original Equipment with Delco Freedom on the label in YELLOW) battery in a GM vehicle would last 5 years or more, if the battery was of the group XXX-6YR (6 Year Warranty pro-rated) or XXX-7YR (7 Year Warranty pro-rated).

Replacing the battery with another AC Delco (Replacement battery will have BLUE, SILVER and RED label) battery of the same grouping (6YR or 7YR) has given similar, if not better, performance. I have seen OE and replacement AC Delco batteries (which have also been used in Honda vehicles as OE for years) last up to 9 years before needing to be replaced.

I have replaced hundreds of batteries in my 15 year career, and I stand behind what I sell and replace. There are certainly other battery manufacturers out there that make good products as well. A lot of the consumer's choices regarding a battery boils down to past experience, warranty and price.

I never argue with any customer. I only make recommendations and ask them if they would like an AC Delco product. There are some products I simply will not install because my experience comes into play and I want to offer excellent service with exceptional value. I do not want a repeat failure for the customer or for me in the shop, and using quality parts goes a long way.

The AC Delco battery pictured in your Saturn is a XXX-5YR (5 Year Warranty pro-rated) battery. Yes, it is a group 75 battery, but what is more important is the "5YR". All 5YR batteries are manufactured in China for AC Delco, and it is up for debate whether or not the AC Delco/Delphi technology is used in these batteries like the 6YR and the 7YR.

Salespeople can say whatever they wish, but the facts are the facts. These batteries are known to be problematic and have much higher failure rates. I personally would never install a 5YR battery in any of my customers vehicles. Why? They do not last as long, they are much cheaper (which still to this day DECREASES the value and durability of the product.

Remember, when we have a choice, we get what we pay for), and dealerships stock them to keep their profit margins higher, and retailers like to sell them because they move more product with a lower price. It all comes full circle between price and value.

I want to give my customers the best possible service experience in my shop, and part of that includes using high quality parts backed with invaluable experience to make good decisions on what to install. I am very fussy when it comes to diagnosing and repairing automobiles because I live in the same city as my customers and I want to be able to talk to them after work hours and not apologize for anything that I did, and I have never had to. I am not tooting my own horn here, nor am I pushing AC Delco product. I am simply offering some experience from my point of view and give you whatever information may be helpful.

Unfortunately, and some do know this, AC Delco batteries are no longer made by Delphi and are now made by Johnson Controls (a US company). All of my AC Delco Representatives tell me the same technology used by AC Delco/Delphi is being used by Johnson Controls. Johnson Controls manufactures several different brands of batteries, including Interstate and AC Delco, to name a few.

The new AC Delco battery is still backed by the same warranty as before, but the most noticable difference is in the venting on top of the battery, along with some stylistic label changes. I have only been installing them for about 9 months now, so I do not have a long enough history with them to tell consumers whether or not they are as good as before. It takes several years to build up that kind of product reputation, so even I am a bit skeptical.

When it comes to products, I only believe what I hear in so far as it can be emperically proven. AC Delco can tell us whatever they like, but like anything else, I need to know what I am installing will not fail prematurely, so even in my situation I am not 100% confident until I get more results. I can only say that so far using the new batteries has gone well, but that doesn't say much with less than a year of being used.

Knowing what I know, I would have never allowed the dealer to install a 5YR battery. You will more than likely have problems with it, and your experience proves it. I know that a lot of dealers operate this way. I am not bashing them here, but I know how they move product to keep the profit margins in check.

As far as GM owning AC Delco, AC Delco is a marketing company and they sell all kinds of OE and aftermarket parts for all makes and all models. GM owns Delphi which manufactures some of the products that AC Delco distributes, but as we know, Delphi is in serious financial trouble. AC Delco also sells reboxed OE parts for many different makes of automobiles, along with aftermarket parts to cover a wide range of applications. Motorcraft batteries are original equipment in Ford vehicles, and Ford owns Motorcraft, just like GM owns Delphi which is sold through AC Delco.

One thing to note when buying an extended warranty.

There are two types of extended warranties available for automobiles and trucks: (1) Only the dealer can work on it and you may pay a deductible (2) Either the dealer can work on it or an independent repair shop of your choice, but you will pay a deductible of at least $50. Make sure to check which kind you have.

If you currently work with an independent repair shop that you trust, ask them to do the work next time. They cannot perform manufacturer's warranty repairs, but anything regarding the extended warranty they can. I do a fair amount of extended warranty work in my shop, and it is a lot of fun educating the customer about the choices they have available to them. Gaining a customer's trust is paramount, and I make it a goal to always earn and maintain it from all of my customers.

I really do apologize for the bad experiences you have had. Unfortunately, you didn't receive the type or kind of service you deserve, and these days good service is getting hard to find. I am not perfect, but I try really hard to do the best I can, and I do stand behind the work I do and the parts I install. Customer satisfaction needs to be number one, and if I cannot do the job right, I will not do it at all.

It is my sincerest hope that you find something helpful in what I have said, and I wish you the best in all that the future has to offer.

Sincerely,

Tom
Red Wing, MN
Respond to this report!
What's this?

#9 Consumer Suggestion

get another brand

AUTHOR: Ryan - (U.S.A.)

get another brand of battery it should last longer than the ones provided by the factory avoid the factory brand products besides they cannot void the worranty I agree that this would work.
Respond to this report!
What's this?

#10 Consumer Suggestion

Get a third party battery.

AUTHOR: Mike - (U.S.A.)

You are absolutely right to report the trouble you've had with AC Delco batteries, and you're not alone. But it does seem to me that the simplest solution is to quit using them. A third-party battery will not void the warranty on the rest of the car. The battery always has a seperate warranty anyway.

Also from your picture it appears that evidence of leakage and corrosion must have shown some time before the battery failed completely and left you stranded. Especially if you continue to use Delco batteries, get in the habit of inspecting the battery every few weeks. Now I know you'd be saying that if Delco made a good battery you wouldn't have to do that, but apparently they don't. Even though they may not know anything about cars, one can often avert a breakdown by opening the hood once in a while to check the fluid levels and look for anything that seems out of place.
Respond to this report!
What's this?

#11 Author of original report

I do not go to a 3rd party because they cannot do warranty work under which my vehicles fall.

AUTHOR: D. - (U.S.A.)

Evidently you did not read my complaint fully. I have been to two different dealerships, granted both have been Saturn dealerships, both owned by GM, but I have been to two different locations, one in Memphis, TN. and one in Melbourne, FL.
I go there because my cars are Saturn vehicles.
I go there because they are under warranty.
I do not go to a 3rd party because they cannot do warranty work under which my vehicles fall.

And yes, 4 times this has happened, as you pointed out it very well could be a bad model battery, in which case GM knows about it, especially if it is a "common occurance" that both dealerships have told me.
I came here to file a RipOff Report to let others know of the troubles I have had, hence the reason this website exists.

This problem with the battery should not have hapened in the first place, and my further point to this complaint, since GM knows about this fault in this battery and they choose to do nothing about it, that is the very nature of a Rip Off.

What's it going to take, someone smashing into someone else on the interstate because they lost power to their vehicle due to a faulty battery?
Respond to this report!
What's this?

#12 Consumer Comment

Why keep going back to the dealer.....?

AUTHOR: George - (U.S.A.)

Four times? I find it difficult to understand why you keep going back to the dealer with this problem when you should have learned that you most likely will just get another faulty battery. Replacing a battery in a car is a very inxepensive maintenance item which can be done at thousands of third party shops ( even gas stations ) around the country. For the safety of your family it would be worth the investment to get another brand of battery for your cars. The cost of going someplace other than the dealer also would eliminate the aggrevation, stress, anxiety and fear associated with worrying about getting stranded again with another bad battery.

Over the years I have also used Delco brand car batteries and never had the problem you have described. It sounds like there is a problem just with the particular model of battery your car uses. If you want to stay with the dealer for repairs, then tell them to install a different model of battery. There are several battery models which will fit into almost every car on the road.There is no reason you must keep installing the identical model of battery as a replacement. Any ( I repeat, ANY ) 12 volt battery with similar cold cranking amps which will fit into the car is acceptable.
Respond to this report!
What's this?

#13 Consumer Comment

UPDATE AC Delco.

AUTHOR: D. - (U.S.A.)

I got my car back and after pulling out numerous paperwork to show that my wife's car was under warranty they agreed to do the work. What clinched it was that I let them know what I found out here on this website, and prior to me going in I printed out almost every complaint against AC Delco.

I also printed out a website that showed that AC Delco was a part of GM, my argument was that this GM dealership was knowingly using a faulty battery provided by another division of their company, and in doing so, they were getting vehicles in with damage that they would in turn charge the customer for repairs because "this is just something that happens with car batteries from time to time, it's not our fault."

This is such a scam. I can only wonder when this is going to happen to me again. It's happened 4 times now, twice on both cars, it's inevitable that it will happen again.
Respond to this report!
What's this?
Report & Rebuttal
Respond to this report!
What's this?
Also a victim?
What's this?
Repair Your Reputation!
What's this?

Advertisers above have met our
strict standards for business conduct.



Ripoff Report Legal Directory