You should expect to pay for this service, and the mechanic should have told you what was done. When the dealer gives you a warranty, that means they will take care of the problem and not charge you for fixing it. It does not mean they will pay some other shop to do their work. You need to take the vehicle to the place that provided the warranty.
There are many things that can make a groaning noise, and part of the problem in finding them is that noise can travel and appear to be coming from somewhere else. Often, with rubber bushings, we have to douse them with a lubricant, then wait for enough of it to work its way in to quiet the noise. This can present another problem. That might take five or ten minutes before the noisy bushing becomes quiet for a while. The mechanic might have lubricated, adjusted, or tightened five other things in the meantime, so when the noise stopped occurring, how is he going to know which item it was?
The noise from a deteriorated bushing is always going to come back after the lubricant wears off, and that could take as little as a few minutes or as much as a week or more. Until that happens, there isn't much you can do to identify the culprit if the inspection doesn't show any abnormal movement or play in the part.
If the noise does come back before the warranty is up, take it to the dealer right away so they can verify it. When I worked for a Chrysler dealership, all that was required with an intermittent problem was to have the complaint documented in writing before the warranty expired, then the manufacturer would take care of it no matter how long it took to act up again. "In writing" simply means the dealer's repair order, which you get a copy of at every visit. If they can't make the problem act up at that time, they can't know what to fix, but they are still going to take care of it when it does act up long enough to be diagnosed.
Used car dealers aren't typically so generous, because, after all, it is a used car and worn-out things can be expected. They're giving you some type of warranty to maintain "customer satisfaction". They want to show they have confidence in their product, but if something does happen, they're going to be involved in fixing it. You cut them out of that loop by going somewhere else. At this point, if the noise doesn't occur soon, there's no way to prove there was a problem, and if it occurs again two weeks from now, you can't expect the dealer to take care of it.
If this is a new-car warranty that is about to expire, take the vehicle to the dealer anyway, even if the noise isn't acting up now. If the mechanic sees the evidence of someone else trying to solve the noise, and especially if there is a known, common cause, HE is the person who has to be convinced. The dealer's warranty claims person and the dealer are your advocates, and the manufacturer will rarely refuse their repair recommendation, as long as it falls within the warranty period.
Sunday, October 26th, 2014 AT 9:46 PM