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(BE WARNED... All my stories are long. One of my college degrees is in Mass Communication and be advised that MASS means I provide a lot of detail which typically irritates Millennials, Engineering types, Geeks and folks with ADHD...

#1. I'm back (sort of) but busy.

#2. At 43,551 miles on Volt "Dusty Too" (my second Volt) I had a flat in a rural area having no cell service. The indicator on my "instrument panel" showed my right front tire was loosing air RAPIDLY. I'm nearly 6 years into driving two Volts now and this is the first flat I've ever had on one while on a trip, and I abuse Volts more than anyone on the planet. (I heard goats in my Volt on two ranches here in Texas....)

#3. I pull off to the side of a country road in total darkness and pull out the gizmo that squirts tire goo and inflates Volt tires. I have never-ever used one in nearly 6 years. Being in rather talk grass and total darkness, I am somewhat concerned about rattlesnakes lurking around, rapid skunks and angry ferrel hogs. Having MS and Polymyalgia Rheumatica, a torn tendon in my right shoulder and generally decrepit to boot, I'm hoping this goo and tire inflater can get me 20 miles back to ranch #1 where I have a spare Volt wheel and a new Michelin somewhere in the barn.

#4. I get the tire inflator out of the back of Dusty Too. It was difficult and painful because I had two each 50 pound bags of goat food in back, with my other stuff I lug around. I can't see much of anything and I only know that I have 2 pound of air in the right front tire, according to my "instrument panel" (I'm a pilot and I have no idea what you call the "instrument panel" in a Volt, where it shows the tires and all that other info.

$5. I squirt the goo and add some air to the front right tire. Low and behold, the little air compressor that comes with the Volt works very well and by the illumination provided by my iPhone 7 Plus, I see the goo going through the inflator tube. I'm feeling fairly confident I might be able to make the last 20 miles home. I'm also feeling somewhat suspicious that a couple of toothless ******** are walking up behind me over an old railroad track (no longer in service) and that one of them is going to say "squeal like a pig."

With some difficulty, I am able to aim my massive iPhone 7 Plus at the tire (it's hard to hold both the iPhone, the air compressor and be down on my knees with a ruptured Baker's Cyst in my right knee, whilst looking over my shoulder for red necks) but I see my tire now has 50 pounds of pressure and I quickly (well as fast as I can with arthritic hands) unscrew the tube from the inflator, toss it in the passenger side floor board and I get back in the driver's seat and get ready to drive off before red necks chewing tobacco, rattle snakes or rapid skunks can mess with me.

#6. Much to my dismay, I see that my instrument panel is showing "ZERO" air pressure in my right front tire. I risk my life to get out of the Volt, look at the right front tire, press on it and it feels rock solid and isn't flat. "What the devil" I say to myself... And then I walk (on a moonless night, with an iPhone not happy because it has 18% energy left) and I see that my RIGHT REAR TIRE is as flat as a pancake.

#7 or 8, I can't remember where I am now... I am mad as Hell at my dealership because the idiots OBVIOUSLY did not reprogram the TPM things when they did the last oil change and tire rotation, and thus, this is the reason I got a faulty indication that my RIGHT FRON TIRE was flat. (I hate my dealership because they also trashed my interior with oily finger prints on the headliner, sun visor and punctured a small hole in the dash, I have pictures you WON'T BELIEVE, but that is a different story...)

#9? ONSTAR TO THE RESCUE...
I press the blue button hoping that it will work because my iPhone shows "no service" and I can't contact ANYONE with my massive iPhone 7 Plus. (At this point, I'm thinking maybe I can make a fire and send smoke signals. Being a military war vet, I know Morse Code, but I also no I'm in a desolate area, saturated by red necks and hillbillies that probably never finished 6th grade... Moments later, a gal from OnStar says "Hello Sterling Silver, how can I help you?"

#10. I'll shorten this part because it is rather complex, but the OnStar gal "escalates" me to another OnStar gal, I talk to her, she gets a GPS fix on my Volt (I'm thinking she is saying to herself, "What the Hell is that old man doing out there in the middle of nowhere on a "dark and stormy night"... Since my worthless Chevrolet dealership is closed (Thank God) the second OnStar gal escalates me to an OnStar Guy (named Brandon I think) and he moves Heaven and Earth I am able to get a courtesy tow to Ranch One. I don't know how these folks did it, but a short while later, a dude in a large wrecker shows up (having the tilt bed) I get out of my Volt and tell the guy "Hey, your name must be Jumping Jack Flash."

#11. Jumping Jack Flash (actually a 25 year old guy named Michael from All Star Wrecking in Abilene, Texas) loads my Volt, drives me to ranch one (I was able to call my wife as soon as I had cell phone service again so she could have several gates open and our 11 dogs put up, Pablo out of the way (my burro who protect the goats and runs after cars, coyotes and tumble weeds) and Jumping Jack Flash unloads my Volt quickly, i pull out a large wad of cash and tell him to buy a beer after he gets off of work and if "you don't drink" take a vacation to Hawaii on me."

#12. At 43,551 miles, the original Goodyear tires look remarkable good BUT I have a large chunk of metal in the bottom of my flat tire. I decide to order MICHELIN Primacy MXM4 tires (instead of Goodyears) and I don't care if I loose 5 or so miles of range.

#13. After having purchase 5 brand new GM vehicles at the dealership in a 7 year span, and with both my wife and I being exceedingly displeased with this dealership (the same guy has about 6 other dealerships in town) we probably will never buy another GM vehicle again. I hate the fact that in my nearly 6 years of owning two Volts, that I have enjoyed very much (except on a trip to Utah and back) I don't like the fact that GM dose not advertise the Volt, that we drove to Utah and had an "issue" while in New Mexico in our Volt and that the nearest dealership who could help us was in Flagstaff, Arizona (Terry Marxen Chevrolet, who said during our desperate call for help "Sorry, our Volt Technician is booked up for the next 7 business days." I won't be buying another Volt or a Bolt (that I had planned on buying next) ...

The dealership experience has been extremely disappointing! Both of my Voits have been outstanding (except for the darned BLASTING horn on Dusty Too that even my dealership can't figure out how to stop it when I keep a spare set of keys in my briefcase...

Long story made short, Love the car, love OnStar but I hate the Chevrolet dealerships I have encountered (with the exception of Classic Chevrolet in Grapevine)... My very first car was a GM product (1958 Olds) I loved my 1970 Camaro I special ordered when I was a senior in high school, but now that I am a senior "citizen", I'll be switching to something else.
 

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Sorry to hear that you had such a bad experience. Not to justify the whole series of events, but not noticing that you were fixing the wrong tire is kind of on you. Plus not adding a spare tire for use in extremely remote areas is also kind of on you. Also, carrying a proper flashlight and other necessities is up to you, not the car company. A flat tire is not unique to the Volt or GM. As for being unhappy with the dealership. That is a problem that is too common with GM, but is also too common among other brands as well.

I guess you could also look at it this way: Thank God you were in a GM vehicle because OnStar is what saved your hide. If you were in a Ford or Toyota, etc. you would have just had your iPhone with no signal.

I hope you find a dealer you are happy with whatever brand it turns out to be.
 

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I put self-sealing tires on 2 of the Volts, and there is always the option of runflats or a spare. We have had about 4 flats on our 3 Volts due to a lot of construction in the area.

I'm not sure any car with no spare and no EMT is going to fair a lot better.

An El Cheapo pencil gauge could have save a bit of grief. No TPMS system today is trouble free, but they don't suck as hard as they first did.

So whether you opt for other brands of cars that do not come with EMTs (runflat tech) or spares, you will still have to deal with it, and should be prepared.
 

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First, SS, great to hear from you again...it's been quite a while and I think I speak for all the old-timers here on the forum that we have missed your voluminous and entertaining missives (even we Engineer-types:). I have told others of your goat-feeding adventures with "Dusty" many times when discussing the Volt's versatility.

I just wish your most recent saga had a happier ending. Man, I'm really sorry you've had such lousy service from (many) GM dealerships. I have to admit I've had similar experiences at most GM dealerships, but have found there are a few outliers that actually "get it" and I zero in on them like a hawk. Usually a family-owned dealership in a small town that has had the same ownership since it was a Stanley Steamer dealer, where you negotiate your price with the owner, who you also take your complaints to.

Hope you get back to us to let us know what you finally select for "something else" and how that experience goes.
 

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Well, goat herding in a Tesla might be fun. Or maybe herding in a Lexis or BMW would be fun too. With that many ******** around though, maybe a good ol' F150 or Silverado should be in your sights?

Rattle snakes alone though would cause me to just keep on driving on the blown tire. ******** even more so.

Of course, being a goat rancher, maybe you could have ridden a goat back to Ranch One? I blame the goats in this case if they were not around. :)
 

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I get the upset. I'd be pissed off too. At the dealer. And I'd write them a Very Stern Letter about the importance of actually doing the TPMS relearn EVERY TIME they take a wheel off, even if it's only one. It's HUGE customer satisfaction issue that they can resolve with five minutes of work as part of a check list.
 

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Wow blame GM for a flat off road. And GM saves your butt with on star
When you are obviously using the wrong tool for the job.
Possibly you should look into vehicles made by Oshkosh .
 

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View attachment 131201

Long story made short, Love the car, love OnStar but I hate the Chevrolet dealerships I have encountered (with the exception of Classic Chevrolet in Grapevine)... My very first car was a GM product (1958 Olds) I loved my 1970 Camaro I special ordered when I was a senior in high school, but now that I am a senior "citizen", I'll be switching to something else.
I think the forum here is not as "internet" dealer friendly as I would like them to be. If traditional dealers lost substantial business to internet dealers this might motivate traditional dealerships to provide better service as it would be key to differentiating themselves from internet dealers.
 

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Don't understand the conclusion of the OP. It wasn't the car's fault, it wasn't the tire's fault, heck it wasn't GM's fault. Sure thing a flat at night is inconvenient, but the car/Onstar allowed you to recover where your phone would not.

Bottom line, goats got fed.
 

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Sorry you are done with Volts. If this was your first flat, your are very lucky. I've lost count of the number of flats we've had on our Volts. Must be around 6 now and both cars have one tire that is leaking very slowly now. I blame Goodyear and their very thin tread. We had one flat from a 1/2 inch roofing nail, didn't even know they came that small. For new tires, I plan to go with anything non Goodyear.
 

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OK it's hindsight, but since it's pretty easy to forget to reprogram the sensor locations when tires get rotated I would LOOK to see which tire was actually low. I would think a tire with 2 psi in it would be obvious. (at least to us engineer types) Sounds like in this case the tire damage was bad enough the it didn't matter though.
 

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In my Volt ownership experience going back 3 Volts and 6 years, it is rare that my TPM display maps correctly to the specific tires. Half the time the Front and Rear are reversed. In addition, half the time they don't reset the oil life when I get an oil change. This of course is all on the service department at the Chevy dealership I use. It's close to home so I just live with it. And if I get an indication of a low tire on the TPM, I use an old-fashioned pressure gauge to find the real culprit.

The nice thing about tire rotations is the TPM display is right about half the time. So I can't complain. Not to mention, if I do complain (for example, by not reporting "fully satisfied" on post-service questionnaires) I'm not convinced there won't be passive-aggressive retribution later -- for example, taking several days longer than estimated to complete the services. So on those every-other service visits where the TPM is wrong, or the oil leak isn't fixed, I just don't respond to the post-service questionnaire. Call me paranoid, but seriously, passive-aggressive is the way the world works these days.
 

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Don't understand the conclusion of the OP. It wasn't the car's fault, it wasn't the tire's fault, heck it wasn't GM's fault. Sure thing a flat at night is inconvenient, but the car/Onstar allowed you to recover where your phone would not.

Bottom line, goats got fed.
Did you read the same posting? It's purely crap dealerships that is causing the OP to change brands. If bad dealerships aren't GMs fault then GM better make them more accountable or else lose more long term customers like the OP.
 

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Good to hear from you again, Sterling. I always enjoy your colorful stories :)

In your situation, I can understand the conclusion. You are stuck with a lousy dealer who does a crap job on the Volt. I'd be upset as well. A bad dealer can sour the whole experience. Not having any "good" dealer options, and not wanting to reward the dealer for poor performance, switching brands is a legit option. The dealer won't care, GM won't care, but you'll hopefully have a better experience with another brand (Ford?).
 

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Sorry to hear that you had to go through this. I also had a flat last weekend on my '16 Volt. I've had 4 flats on my '16 and 2 on my '14 Volt this past year (just a case a bad luck, I suppose). So when I heard the familiar "ka-whump" as the car moved, I had a bad feeling that it wasn't just a rock in a tire tread.

Sure enough, it was a large screw in my left rear tire. Tire pressure held, and since I had a dinner engagement, I was praying that it would still hold by the time it finished so I can make the 60 mile return drive home.

No such luck--I started the car and was greeted with a "10 PSI" message on that tire. Good thing for that message, as the tire still looked ok.

So I used the tire goo for the first time. It worked well and held. Which was good, as the rain was heavy, and my wife's patience of holding an umbrella over her head and mine was wearing thin.

Made it home at 39 PSI, and Skip's Tire cleaned and patched the tire for free. Kind of sad that I know those guys on a first name basis--and they are amazed that I have 2 Volts.

I was thinking of getting Michelin Premier A/S tires next time (the same ones in the Chevy Bolt). These tires are self-sealing; in fact, the Chevy Bolt doesn't even come with an inflater or tire goo. I don't know if this tire is for sale in retail stores yet--but it's the same size as the tire in the Chevy Volt.
 

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Stories like these are why I don't mind the minor hit to range by carrying a full spare everyday on my 70+ mile commute even though it's through busy traffic and cities where help is a phone call away. I don't want to wait an unknown amount of time (5min+) for someone to come help me. I can just throw out some road flares and triangles and change out my flat using my scissor jack in 20 minutes after pulling over to a safe spot (includes donning portable $0.50 rain poncho from my roadside emergency kit and work gloves).

Snow chains/cables, that's a different story. Snow owns me and I just stay home or go home early.
 

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STERLING SILVER, congratulations, you have written an american classic novel,,",********, rattle snakes and volts " a thriller,,,will make a great movie , just send it to Holywood !!!...Do not forget the goats...LOL
 

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Almost 90k miles on my 2011 Volt. No flats but I do keep a tire repair kit in the car and I have a donut, jack, chocks, lug wrench at home if needed. The car is driven in the metro area, so worst case the spare is only 30 or so minutes away.
 
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