New owner of a 2004 Neptune Blue AWD Vibe

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oscarjm
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New owner of a 2004 Neptune Blue AWD Vibe

Post by oscarjm » Thu May 01, 2014 9:30 am

I’ve been researching this forum for a couple months now while searching for a 1st generation AWD Vibe or Matrix. I finally found one and bought it, so I thought it is time to register and perhaps contribute.

A little background, if you care. I’ve wanted an AWD Matrix ever since I first saw one, but I was fresh out of grad school and didn’t want to take on a loan for a new car. So, I eventually settled for a manual 1996 Honda Civic sedan that has been very reliable, but boring as can be, and have been driving it for the past 8 years without even thinking about selling it. My wife’s 2001 RAV4 was traded in for a more family friendly Mazda5 last December, which made my Civic seem really old. So I started looking for an AWD Matrix/Vibe, and realized that the AWD Vibes are more affordable and don’t have the extraneous Matrix underbody spoilers and extensions that seem to give the car even less ground clearance.

After a couple months of searching, I finally found a 2004 Neptune Blue AWD Pontiac Vibe that hit most of my criteria: affordable, low miles (68,000+), one owner, accident free, and relatively spotless for its age. ESC, side air bags, and TPMS might have been nice, but would be a rare find and limit me to a later year. I wouldn’t have minded the Monsoon sub, either. Here are a couple pics:
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Apparently the previous owner was a fan of bumper stickers, and the years hadn’t been kind to the paint, so the used car shop repainted everything but the roof (hope this wasn’t a missed red flag). They did a great job. A bonus was that it was debadged (but came with all of the emblems if I want to reattach, which I don’t) and it has the crossbars on the roof racks. It has a decent aftermarket head unit. I don’t know if the speakers have been upgraded, but they sound decent. It is remote start, which will be nice in the winter. On the way home, I got 25 mpg and 27.5 mpg on the highway on cheap tires that were about 5 lbs. under pressure, so hopefully this will improve.

I have a few things I want to do right away:
1- Install mudflaps (already ordered). This car will see some gravel and muddy roads.
2- Fix the recirc actuator (already ordered) so it stops clicking. Thanks to this forum for helping me figure this common issue out.
3- Replace the fluid in the transfer case and rear differential with synthetic. I didn’t see any evidence of leaks.
4- Install a trailer hitch for a bike rack and occasional light towing.
5- Purchase a OEM cargo mat and cargo net

A few things I need to think about:
1- Tires- the dealer installed new ProMeter tires. I need to figure out if these are ticking time bombs, and if they are noisier than a name brand tire. I might just put them on Craigslist before unmounting to see if I can get any $ out of them.
2- The steering wheel is not centered. It was supposedly aligned by the dealer, seems to drive relatively straight, so hopefully the alignment shop goofed up. I need to have this checked out and hope I didn’t miss some suspension damage when I was looking over the car.
3- How best to tackle the underbody surface rust before it gets out of hand.
4- Whether to install an auxillary transmission cooler. (Already have one just sitting around).

And a few things might be pipe dreams:
1- Install a Pioneer App Radio
2- Install an underseat enclosed sub (looking at Kenwood KSC-SW11- anyone done this?)
3- Window tinting (would really look good with the color of the car)

If I haven’t already lost everyone with this long post, does anyone know of a good service manual that covers the AWD components? Chilton’s and Hayne’s don’t.

Thanks! Looking forward to hearing from anyone who has some advice or comments about anything above!

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vibolista
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Re: New owner of a 2004 Neptune Blue AWD Vibe

Post by vibolista » Thu May 01, 2014 11:32 am

Shop did a nice job on the paint... looks new! Interior's in good shape, too. With that new paint, a set of mud guards help keep the tar and stone chip wear off the lower areas behind the wheels. Hopefully this car was well taken care of, and if so, should last you a long time.

Tires are important upgrades. There are some very good Low Rolling Resistance tires our there that will help bring your mpg up. Got to TireRack dot com and look up all the appropriate tires that will fit your needs. Don't have a clue where you drive, but if you deal with snow, get a good set of dedicated snow tires and your Vibe will not let you down on the slick stuff. I put a set of Blizzaks on a set of steel wheels for the Winter and even with 2 wheel drive, snow on the road is not an issue.

I went with slightly taller tires on my Vibe for a little extra clearance. You can put a lot of tire in a Vibe wheel well without much problem, as long as your wheels have the proper offset. Your OEM 16 inch alloy wheels are a perfect 39 mm offset... and the OEM steel wheels were also 39 mm offset. There was an available 17 inch OEM alloy that had a 45 mm offset. The Summer 17 inch aftermarket alloy wheels on my Vibe are 38 mm offset, and that places the front tires nearly flush with the edge of the bodywork around the wheel wells. I did install a very quiet tire on the Vibe since road noise is easily heard on this car. Quiet tires help a lot.

Tire pressure is an important mpg factor. I keep my Summer tires at 39 psi front and 37 psi rear. Not too harsh for our roads. Make sure that you read the max inflation printed on your tire... and never inflate above that level. Most modern tires have max cold pressure ratings from 44 to 51 psi.

Go synthetic as soon as you can. Check your air filter and the entire plenum to make sure that it's not full of debris. The engine loves NGK Iridium spark plugs. Most plugs are good for 100,000 miles, but I would check them, just in case. Depending on temperatures where this car was driven, you might want to check or even upgrade the plug wires

I test drove the first 2003 Vibe that showed up in the Portland, Maine area and was instantly sold on it. Size, economy, cargo room and comfort were great. It's definitely a versatile vehicle. The moment my car showed signs of wearing out, I replaced it with the '08 Vibe I currently own. I almost missed out, as the '08 models had just stopped production, so I had to search a bit to get one with the options I wanted. Couldn't find one with the side air bags, but got everything else. Has been trouble free, but it doesn't have too many miles on it yet.

Let us know how that long list you jotted down progresses, and welcome to the Vibe forum!
'08 Manual, Sun&Sound, 17" Borbet Type CA wheels, 215/50 Summer Tires... 16" OE steel, 215/55 Snow Tires

zythr
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Re: New owner of a 2004 Neptune Blue AWD Vibe

Post by zythr » Thu May 01, 2014 3:26 pm

Hi, Welcome. Another 2004, way to go. :D

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Salsa Guy
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Re: New owner of a 2004 Neptune Blue AWD Vibe

Post by Salsa Guy » Thu May 01, 2014 5:57 pm

Get a TRD SC you won't regret the HP.
Anyway I see you are keeping an eye on the Rear Diff and that good. They are fun cars in the snow.

Enjoy!!
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vibenvy
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Re: New owner of a 2004 Neptune Blue AWD Vibe

Post by vibenvy » Sat May 03, 2014 1:17 pm

Welcome to GenVibe! Thanks for posting pictures of your "new" AWD Vibe right away! It definitely looks to be in great shape and as others said, it looks like the shop did a good job on the paint. Definitely keep us updated on any maintenance and/or modifications you do ;).
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2009 Steel Blue Metallic Vibe GT - 5-Speed Auto – Garage

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Re: New owner of a 2004 Neptune Blue AWD Vibe

Post by tpollauf » Sun May 04, 2014 7:33 am

Welcome to GenVibe :D Looks clean & love the color. Visit often and enjoy the ride!
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w5dmg
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Re: New owner of a 2004 Neptune Blue AWD Vibe

Post by w5dmg » Mon May 05, 2014 5:23 pm

Nice, that looks like mine, same color, wheels, roof rack. Mine is a 2005 and 2wd.
Mine had 66,000 miles on it when purchased, now has 30,000 more.

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kc6yot
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Re: New owner of a 2004 Neptune Blue AWD Vibe

Post by kc6yot » Thu May 08, 2014 6:00 pm

That is a good deal for an 04, AWD with the low miles. Nice. The AWD has less horse power due to the way they routed the exhaust, you should also expect only 29 mpg tops, but when it rains and snows the AWD is the way to go. The FWD has more power and better MPG. Very nice looking car. I say hi and welcome. Why can I not find such a deal in Arkansas? All the Vibes here are for sale at dealers are high mark up. Oh well, I will keep looking I will find the next under $4000.00 bargain sooner or later. Love the 03-04 front grill/bumper look over the 05-08. I have three so far and slowly looking for a 4th one.
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Nyx8
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Re: New owner of a 2004 Neptune Blue AWD Vibe

Post by Nyx8 » Fri May 09, 2014 5:19 am

That Vibe does look like new! The front styling on that generation of the vibe is definitely the best IMO :D
~*Nyx*~
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SOLD - 2006 Pontiac Vibe Base 1.8L, 62k miles
SOLD - 1996 Pontiac Firebird V6, 94k miles
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Derf
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Re: New owner of a 2004 Neptune Blue AWD Vibe

Post by Derf » Mon May 12, 2014 12:16 pm

Nice ride. Keep us updated on your upgrades.

When you add the mudflaps, the screws for the front fender well may seem short, replaced mine with slightly longer stainless screws/washers
2005 #10,524 Neptune Vibe "Bandit" Auto, Moon & Tunes 212k :D
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808 Vibes
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Re: New owner of a 2004 Neptune Blue AWD Vibe

Post by 808 Vibes » Wed May 14, 2014 7:59 pm

congrats...Neptune is the BEST!
~ ALIS VOLAT PROPRIIS ~

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vibrologist
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Re: New owner of a 2004 Neptune Blue AWD Vibe

Post by vibrologist » Thu May 15, 2014 5:56 am

Nice catch, oscarjim!

I have been shopping at Goodwill for a long time, but I never found a Vibe, AWD too. ;)
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oscarjm
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Re: New owner of a 2004 Neptune Blue AWD Vibe

Post by oscarjm » Tue Jun 10, 2014 9:10 am

oscarjm wrote: I have a few things I want to do right away:
1- Install mudflaps (already ordered). This car will see some gravel and muddy roads. Rear mudflaps installed, cheap universal ones installed in front due to shipping error.
2- Fix the recirc actuator (already ordered) so it stops clicking. Thanks to this forum for helping me figure this common issue out. This wasn’t too bad with a 6mm driver, a small ratchet, and some patience, and I was able to do it without removing the dash. Nice to have fresh air again.
3- Replace the fluid in the transfer case and rear differential with synthetic. I didn’t see any evidence of leaks.
4- Install a trailer hitch for a bike rack and occasional light towing. (Ordering Hidden Hitch 60958 off eBay)
5- Purchase a OEM cargo mat and cargo net. I haven’t yet decided on the need for the cargo mat… I really like being able to sweep out the dirt instead of vacuuming. Found a good deal on NOS Toyota Matrix cargo nets, that included the tie down loops, and I use the nets for securing things I don’t want to roll around. The tie downs have already come in handy in keeping a 7 gallon air compressor in place.

A few things I need to think about:
1- Tires- the dealer installed new ProMeter tires. I need to figure out if these are ticking time bombs, and if they are noisier than a name brand tire. I might just put them on Craigslist before unmounting to see if I can get any $ out of them. I’ve decided to keep these on, they seem to perform fine, and I’d rather save some $ for other projects.
2- The steering wheel is not centered. It was supposedly aligned by the dealer, seems to drive relatively straight, so hopefully the alignment shop goofed up. I need to have this checked out and hope I didn’t miss some suspension damage when I was looking over the car.
3- How best to tackle the underbody surface rust before it gets out of hand.
4- Whether to install an auxillary transmission cooler. (Already have one just sitting around).
5- Install a reverse/back up camera. I have a somewhat steep driveway and kids to watch for.

And a few things might be pipe dreams:
1- Install a Pioneer App Radio (a good argument to complement the reverse camera)
2- Install an underseat enclosed sub (looking at Kenwood KSC-SW11- anyone done this?) Decided against this- not enough clearance under the seat, and the speakers seem to have plenty of power and range, but pop a little at higher volume. They are stock, and I hope to upgrade someday.
3- Window tinting (would really look good with the color of the car)


If I haven’t already lost everyone with this long post, does anyone know of a good service manual that covers the AWD components? Chilton’s and Hayne’s don’t.

Thanks! Looking forward to hearing from anyone who has some advice or comments about anything above!
Thanks to everyone who responded! I didn't get the car from Goodwill... that would have been a pretty sweet find if I had though!

I added some updates above in blue.

Almost 1.5 months into owning this car, and I am very happy with it. I had to spend some time fixing up/cleaning my Honda Civic to sell, and it sold fast, and the Vibe feels more like my car since I have license plates on it. I've tested out the AWD on a muddy gravel road and in the rain a couple times, and can't get it to slip, so I'm pretty confident the AWD is working as it should. This car is so practical and versatile- I'm already worried about what I will get next when its time for this car to retire, which hopefully won't be for another 10 years.

The worst gas mileage I've gotten is 19.24 (all city, w/ my wife's lead foot), and the best was around a 250 mile highway trip at 30.5 mpg. I'm averaging 23-24 city and 29 hwy.

One thing I didn't mention above- the drivers side tweeter didn't work, so I pulled the door panel and found that someone had cleanly cut the wire to it (likely the used car dealer). I reattached it and found out why it had been cut- pops and crackles with every bump in the road. I pulled the radio and found that the crossover in the dash had a loose connection which caused crackling issues. I fixed this, but am wondering if the extra crossover is even necessary since the factory tweeters have integrated crossovers.

A couple more radio issues- The speakers have a slight hum when you turn on the key- I think this is the stock amplifier? The speakers sound decent at higher volume, but the hum at lower volumes is annoying. Also, AM reception is nonexistent, and FM is pretty bad. I found the forums about repowering the stock antenna amplifier with an aftermarket stereo, and spliced the red accessory wire from the radio to the black wire on the antenna cable. No improvement whatsoever in reception, and now the radio will stay on when I turn the car off and take out the key. I think a timer eventually turns it off, but I definitely think I crossed the wrong wires. Anyone else have this happen? I might repost in the audio section.

EDIT: I replaced the owered antennae with a junkyard find, as the original was missing the mast. Still no improvement in reception. I lived with having to manually turn off the radio each time I got out of the car until I replaced the front speakers. I removed the jumper wire referenced above, and the radio no longer remained on when the car was off. No idea what happened there, but did find that the GM antennae adapter was loose, so I bent the connection and now have great reception.
Last edited by oscarjm on Fri Feb 12, 2016 12:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.

oscarjm
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Re: New owner of a 2004 Neptune Blue AWD Vibe

Post by oscarjm » Fri Feb 12, 2016 11:52 am

It has been a while since I have posted anything, but I have made a couple minor improvements to my Vibe and thought I would share. I don't post very often, so this is probably going to be comprehensive.

First, I just got it tinted yesterday. Here are some before and after pics. The tinting is 35% in the front, 20% in the rear, and cost $205.

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Sorry for the dirty car pictures, but it has been too cold to give it a wash.

A few things:

GAS MILEAGE:
I've put about 14,000 miles on the car since I have bought it, and am generally happy with it, but sometimes get Subaru envy (but try finding a Subaru that is this cheap to purchase and own!). Gas mileage for the past year has averaged 23, which I wish were better, but that is the price I pay for AWD... and many trips include pulling a small boat, loaded trailers, firewood, car-full of weekend vacation gear and kids and a full hitch-hauler, etc.

AWD:
As for the AWD, I've been stranded twice now on the same spot on a rural dirt road in icy conditions. Both times I had to slow down or stop on a hill, and couldn't get started again and ended up abandoning the car. I don't expect the AWD to help me much in ice, but I've never been stranded like that before (and also never took my previous FWD car in conditions like those). I now have a set of emergency tire chains in that narrow storage compartment directly behind the rear seat, just in case.

TIRES:
Also, those cheap ProMeter tires the used car dealer installed felt like hard plastic both times I got stuck and had no grip. I just replaced them with Continental PureContact Ecoplus DWS tires which get great reviews for this car. They are definitely quieter, but I haven't had the chance to test them in ice and snow. We're headed to ski country with it soon, so I should get the chance to see how it does in the snowy mountains.

REPAIRS:
I've had three issues since purchasing the car:
1) I lost all blower fan speeds except for low. After poking around on this forum, I replaced the blower motor resistor (ACDelco 15-80202) and all the fan speeds worked again.
2) The first time I really tested out the AWD offroad on a snowy hill, both inner CV boots cracked on the rear halfshafts. I noticed a green fluid on the snow. I haven't repaired this yet. I'll have to decide whether to replace both halfshafts with remanufactured parts, or try to clean up the joints, regrease, and replace the boots myself. I've replaced front halfshafts before on previous cars, but never the rear. Looks like it will take a weekend.
3) The door check in the driver's side door was rubbing against my window when it was down. Again, from the great info on this site, I removed the door check and used my grinder to grind it down. I'm not sure that anyone else has tried this, but I placed two pennies as a spacer between the door check mount and the door on the inside to angle the door check away from the window. Here is a pic of the ground door check and the pennies, from inside the door:

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An alignment fixed my off-center steering wheel.

SOUND SYSTEM:
My stock front speakers sounded great at low volume, but crackled when I turned them up. I replaced them with Polk Audio DB6501 6.5-Inch 2-Way Component System, and also used the Frost King duct insulation on the interior of the front door skin and then another layer to totally enclose the door. Here are some pics from the install:

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The speakers sound great, but I didn't have a secure mount for the crossover in each door and the crossovers rattle at higher volumes, which I need to fix. As others have noted, I lost some of the deep bass since the stock amp is 2 ohms and the new speakers are 4 ohms, but the stock rear speakers still have great response and help fill in some of the missing bass. I might use the Frost King duct insulation on the rear doors and other areas of the car as it was cheap and easy to use.

A couple notes about the speaker install- I carefully cut the stock speaker out of its mount to use for the new speaker, as suggested by others, and could not get the door panel to fit back in place. The mounts provided with the Polk speaker ended up fitting great (you have to drill new holes in the door) and provide plenty of clearance when the window is rolled down. I wasted quite a bit of time figuring this out.

When I turned on my stereo to test the speakers, the front speakers didn't work, only the tweeters and rear speakers. After checking all my connections, rewiring the crossovers different ways, it turns out my battery was too drained from having the doors open through the day that it couldn't power up the stock amplifier, or couldn't provide enough power to the front speakers. After the battery charged, I had sound and bass. Who knew?

I still plan to upgrade the stereo and install a reverse camera. Also, my headlight lenses keep yellowing after I use a polishing kit, so I might sand them down and apply UV resistant rattle-can clearcoat to see if I can get them to stay clear. Oh yeah, I also need to take it in for that airbag recall.

So that's it. The car has been great for our family of four, has taken us on many camping trips, trips to the lake, it pulls trailers, can fit a quarter cord of firewood inside (and much more if I wasn't concerned about the weight), and still looks great in 2016.

Feel free to comment on anything or everything!

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vibenvy
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Re: New owner of a 2004 Neptune Blue AWD Vibe

Post by vibenvy » Fri Feb 12, 2016 5:34 pm

Nice to see an update from you! It's also great to hear you've done some projects to the Vibe and that it's still treating you well :)!
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oscarjm
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Re: New owner of a 2004 Neptune Blue AWD Vibe

Post by oscarjm » Wed Aug 21, 2019 12:09 pm

Time for a long overdue (3+ years) update on my Vibe. I'm over 130,000 miles now, and still very happy with the car. I'll stick with the order of my previous update:

GAS MILEAGE
I track this with every fill. I average about 23 in the winter, and 27 in the summer, and my driving is probably 50/50 city/highway. On long highway trips, I can hit 30-31. I'm pretty happy with this considering what the Vibe is capable of doing and hauling.

AWD
I haven't gotten stranded or stuck since I put the tire chains in the car... I've never had to use them. The AWD works great, I'm able to drive confidently on muddy, gravel roads, and make it uphill on some muddy paths on some land that we own. No complaints, although I installed mudflaps soon after purchasing the vehicle, and these always drag when I am offroad. More clearance would be great.

TIRES
The Continental PureContact Ecoplus DWS tires lasted a little over 44,000 miles until the tread was less than 2/32 of an inch. I really thought they would last longer, and kept the car aligned. I did fall behind on tire rotation a few times, but the tires wore evenly. After a lot of research, I decided to buy General Altimax RT43 tires based on top reviews in Consumer Reports. I'm hoping they wear a little longer. So far, after almost 3,500 miles, they are quiet and handle well.

REPAIRS
I've done some preventative maintenance, and some required maintenance. I do everything myself.

1)Alternator- Ever since I purchased the car, the battery light was dimly lit at all times. At almost 103,000 miles, the alternator quit, and I installed a new one. I have no idea why, but the battery light as been off ever since the alternator was replaced. I replaced the serpentine belt at the same time.

2) Brakes- new pads and rotors in the front at 104,085. I had a lot of vibration and brake dust, and the pads were starting to get noisy. I kept my old rotors and had them ground at O'reilly auto (free!), and because the vibration returned, I installed the refurbished rotors at 117,000 miles. These have started to vibrate as well, so I likely will have my spare rotors ground and reinstall. Either I'm not bedding the pads properly, or the traffic I drive in to and from work is warping the rotors.

3)A/C Clutch- The A/C went out at around 110,000 miles. After receiving a $1,500 quote from a shop to replace the compressor and evaporator, I did a little trouble shooting and determined that the compressor clutch had gone out. I purchased an OEM A/C Delco compressor clutch ($130 on CARiD) and purchased a compressor clutch puller, and had A/C again.

4) Routine and Preventative Maintenance (besides oil changes/filter changes)

Spark Plugs- replaced at 120,000 miles- NGK iridium.

AWD components- I do have a drip every once and a while from the front transfer case and rear differential. I replace the fluids once a year, and measure the amount that is drained, and the leaks aren't a concern. As I mentioned in my last update, the rear C/V joint axle boots are cracked, but make no noise, so I'm not in a hurry to replace them. If I do, I'll likely replace the rear differential seals at the same time.

Automatic Transmission- at 127,000 miles, I replaced the fluid/filter and gasket (no leaks) with full synthetic valvoline max life multi-vehicle ATF and a Wix filter.

Valve Cover Gasket- at 127,000 miles, I noticed a slight oil leak when changing my oil that looked like it came from the rear of the valve cover. I replaced the gasket and seals and it looks like the problem is fixed.

Intake Gasket- replaced at 127,000 miles based on the problems many folks on this forum have had with leaks. Mine was a FelPro black gasket- and I replaced it with the same. I don't think replacement was necessary, but I did it as a precaution. My engine barely ran after this repair, and by using some starting fluid around the intake, I discovered that a vacuum hose had disconnected from the engine near the air filter.

Springs and Stuts- replaced at 127,000 miles based on some rough handling on potholes and some squeaks and groans. I used Monroe quikstruts for the front, and Moog Springs and Monroe OESpectrum struts on the rears. The rear struts were completely shot. Comparing the OEM KYB rear springs and the MOOG replacements- the MOOG springs are a heavier gauge, have additional windings, but are shorter when uncompressed. However, the ride height is great, and it handles like a new car.

Stereo/Electronics- I installed a Pioneer AVH-280BT receiver along with a reverse camera. The reverse camera is mounted just to the right of the tailgate handle. I installed a Sound Ordnance B-8PTD powered 8" sub under the driver's seat. The sub is great for filling out the lows, and fits well under the seat. I have the level controller for the sub in the little pop down change tray to the left of the steering wheel. The stock speakers in the rear doors still sound great, and I'm still using the stock amp. My only complaint would be that the volume has to be at max when I use the system for calls, which may be attributable to using the stock 2 ohm amp with 4 ohm front speakers. If I had nothing but time on my hands, I would bypass the stock amp as others have done on this forum.

Other issues left to tackle:
1)Sunroof- the passenger side track has started to rattle. I was able to tighten one screw toward the rear using a small bit that I could turn with an open ended wrench. This helped, but there are more screws that are loose, so the headliner will have to come down at some point so I can tighten the rest (and apply some loctite!).
2) Check engine light- comes on intermittently with a p0442 error code for an evap emission leak. I replaced the gas cap, but the light came back on. I can hear the evap solenoid click near the air filter, so I think that is working find. I haven't found a leak, but routinely topped off the tank for years, and likely have damaged the charcoal canister. If this bothers me enough, I'll replace the canister.
3) Exhaust- I had to cut the connection between the muffler and the resonator as I had a bad leak. I replaced this temporarily with a flex tube, but the pipes are different sizes, so I had to build up the resonator pipe with some sheet metal. This worked fine until...

ImageIMG_6036

I was rear-ended in a light mist by a Nissan Versa. Thankfully no one was injured. You can see the extensive damage to her car. As for the Vibe? This is what $2,400 in repairs looks like (it wasn't totaled!). The rear bumper required replacement because the bottom mounting tabs were broken, and they had to paint the new bumper and the tailgate, as well as replace my hitch. Unfortunately, the aftermarket bumper has more of a pebbled look than the OEM one, and I'm not happy about that. In retrospect, I would have searched for a used bumper to have repainted.

ImageIMG_6102

The flexible exhaust pipe was stressed by the accident, and eventually came apart. I have installed another flexible pipe, but will likely look into either replacing the entire exhaust from the manifold back, or cut the pipe between the resonator and catalytic converter and weld in a replacement, along with a new muffler.

I will post a separate thread about why I did all of the preventative maintenance at 127,000 miles, but as a spoiler, it was in preparation for a 3,200 mile road trip pulling a pop up camper!

That should do it- if you've read all of this, thanks!

zbyers
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Re: New owner of a 2004 Neptune Blue AWD Vibe

Post by zbyers » Thu Aug 22, 2019 3:06 am

Nice update; appreciate the info. Glad to see she's still keepin' you moving!

RE your P0442.. I believe this is the purge valve on the charcoal canister causing that code. We have had the same code a few times on our fleet of Vibes, and when replacing that, the issue has resolved. The purge valve collects a lot of grime and tends to stick. You could remove it and clean it up to try to resolve the issues. We opted just to replace. If I find the part number I used, I'll post it here.
(2) '03 Bases, '04 GT, '04 AWD, '06 AWD, '07 Base, '17 Frontier CCLB
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tpollauf
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Re: New owner of a 2004 Neptune Blue AWD Vibe

Post by tpollauf » Sat Aug 24, 2019 9:01 am

Awesome write up! I may opt out for a newer radio soon for my 2004 Vibe GT and if so will do what you did, find a model that includes a back-up camera! I'll definitely be adding front seat heaters before winter as this car will be my primary winter vehicle soon. It will see salt/brine for the first time in its 16 year life :(
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