picking up an 03 vibe gt on monday, what to look for ?

Discuss any maintenance you've done to your Vibe & Matrix and ask how to perform maintenance on your vehicle
BassetVIBEs1984
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Joined: Thu Apr 20, 2017 9:14 pm

picking up an 03 vibe gt on monday, what to look for ?

Postby BassetVIBEs1984 » Sat Apr 22, 2017 7:51 pm

so ive already driven the car roughly 300 miles, but i had to leave it at the car lot because the deal at the bank had to be reorganized. i like the car and want to seal the deal, but i need to know what to look for when i get it and start putting the miles on it. it currently sits at a tad over 222k miles, but EVERYTHING works, including the ac and the power sunroof.

i can do the work myself, and ive always wanted one of these. so here i am, lay it on me genvibe.com, what does this baby need ???

zbyers
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Location: Sheffield, Pennsylvania

Re: picking up an 03 vibe gt on monday, what to look for ?

Postby zbyers » Sat Apr 22, 2017 8:04 pm

First and foremost, is ensuring that "lift" works. Get it above 6200rpm with the throttle wide open. You should feel it when it kicks in. You can do a quick google search to learn a bit more about lift. It's similar to Honda's vtec.

Other than that, depending on location, rust may be a slight issue. Usually above the windshield, under the rear door handles, the front on the rear wheel wells, and the rear hatch under the glass and the bottom lip on the bumper.

If it's been maintained, it should take you well over 300k. Many here have gone over that.
Ruby- 03 Salsa, Ray[is]AWD- 04 Salsa AWD, Simon- 03 Silver "Faux by Four"
Raven- 03 Abyss GT, Neptune- 05 AWD, Robyn- 07 Stealth Gray Metallic, Mystic- 09 AWD

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BassetVIBEs1984
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Joined: Thu Apr 20, 2017 9:14 pm

Re: picking up an 03 vibe gt on monday, what to look for ?

Postby BassetVIBEs1984 » Sun Apr 23, 2017 3:36 am

im sure that the variable valve lift and timing system works. it definitely makes more power then any 4 cylinder vehicle ive ever owned, and it moves quite well. ill give it a good looking over once i get it to make sure there arent any bad rust areas.

jolt
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Re: picking up an 03 vibe gt on monday, what to look for ?

Postby jolt » Sun Apr 23, 2017 12:39 pm

Rock chips and faded paint should be checked over. Chips in the paint led to rusting. I would change all fluids and filters, checking here for the proper fluids as the Pontiac manual has some of the wrong fluids listed. Don't forget the cabin air filter. Check to make sure all the windows go up and down completely with no sticking and weird noises. Make sure that the outside air control for the heating opens and closes without any clicking noise, which is a striped gear on the drive motor that the first gen Vibes are know for.

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ImUrOBGYN
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Re: picking up an 03 vibe gt on monday, what to look for ?

Postby ImUrOBGYN » Sun Apr 23, 2017 3:13 pm

BassetVIBEs1984 wrote:im sure that the variable valve lift and timing system works. it definitely makes more power then any 4 cylinder vehicle ive ever owned, and it moves quite well. ill give it a good looking over once i get it to make sure there arent any bad rust areas.

If you haven't driven it above the previously stated rpm's to check its functionality, had do you know if it works? It's not a guessing thing, but a very on/off noticable thing.

Another thing to check for is any oil leaks, of course. But especially the passenger side facing the wheel, where the belt/pulley system is. Check the valve cover gasket and especially the pulley and... (removed), what's that little timing clicker called??? Man, seems to escape me atm. Just check real well around that whole area. Oh, and don't forget to run codes. Guaranteed the dealership has already cleared them but there may be stored codes and if there are unfinished processes, you'll know they reset them for sure. Not that it means anything bad, but its good to be aware and you won't be surprised if it does throw a code later. The P0420 is a very common code.
I spent a lot of money on booze, birds and fast cars. The rest I just squandered. - George Best
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BassetVIBEs1984
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Joined: Thu Apr 20, 2017 9:14 pm

Re: picking up an 03 vibe gt on monday, what to look for ?

Postby BassetVIBEs1984 » Sun Apr 23, 2017 3:56 pm

i pulled to 8k rpms every chance i got when i drove it, thats how i know it worked. when i do get it and get it home, first thing will be an oil change. and id like to do a trans fluid change as well. who recommends what in terms of motor oil and trans fluid, and the best places to source these fluids ...

BassetVIBEs1984
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Joined: Thu Apr 20, 2017 9:14 pm

Re: picking up an 03 vibe gt on monday, what to look for ?

Postby BassetVIBEs1984 » Sun Apr 23, 2017 4:02 pm

the cel also came on while i was driving it, so i am going to get that checked out as well.

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Caretaker
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Re: picking up an 03 vibe gt on monday, what to look for ?

Postby Caretaker » Sun Apr 23, 2017 4:35 pm

"What should I look for?"

In one word: EVERYTHING. I have been on this board since the beginning and have often stated, especially when it comes to these Corolla engines, mileage doesn't matter, YEARS do. The car is approaching 15 years old. That's a lot of time on rubber parts, metal parts, interior parts and anything lubricated that may or may NOT have been properly maintained over all those years. You did not mention the price you are getting this GT for. It better be next to nothing, given how old the car is. Unless you can convince me that the price is too good to pass up, I'd focus on the fact that the odometer normally spooks people and that there are a lot of "high mileage" Corolla-Vibes out there with a lot less years on them that people are willing to sell for very little only because they think mileage matters. I'm inclined to tell you to look for one of them, or the myriad of Matrix, which also are in ample supply. These are great cars but time catches up to every thing and everyone. Let us know how it works out for you.
Live it up: There will be plenty of time to be old when you die.
** 2009 Vibe: 1.8 liter automatic **
** 2010 Hyundai Elantra Touring **
** 2007 Honda Fit Sport **

BassetVIBEs1984
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Re: picking up an 03 vibe gt on monday, what to look for ?

Postby BassetVIBEs1984 » Sun Apr 23, 2017 4:55 pm

ok, let me clarify what i mean when i am asking "what to look for"

i am mechanically inclined so i am comfortable doing everything down to a line hone on the crank journals if i had to. 8 years as a machinist and welder in the national guard.

that being said, what are the service intervals for the trans fluid, timing chain, valve adjustment if any ... the critical stuff that one needs to be on an enthusiasts forum like this one so that they can get the correct information.

the car will be thoroughly gone over once i get it home, and ill change the oil before i do anything else as its not coming with any service records.

should i change the power steering fluid, the coolant, anything else ???

and again, who recommends what fluids/filters for this drivetrain ?

jolt
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Re: picking up an 03 vibe gt on monday, what to look for ?

Postby jolt » Sun Apr 23, 2017 7:38 pm

Here is a link that you need: http://madstyle1972.com/Repair/

Download load this info, as it like everything on the internet, could disappear.

With that mileage, change all the fluids - power steering and brake fluid too. The main fluid that is listed wrong in the Vibe manual is the anti-freeze. Use the anti-freeze listed for the Toyota (pink color) and do not use GM Dex-cool (orange color). Remember that this drive train is Toyota and the above link is for a Toyota. As for gear lube, I would use a synthetic gear lube of the proper rating. Most people forget about the cabin air filter that is behind the glove box. Be careful pulling it out because if it has not been changed, there may be leaves and other junk plied on top of the filter. This stuff will fall into the blower if you just slide the filter out and it is packed with junk. Any thing over 100,000 miles and with 15 years on it, for as far as liquids go, need to be changed. I think in the manual the valve clearance should be checked and adjusted as needed at 100,000 miles too, but don't hold to that as you can check that yourself in the manual. You will also find the error codes listed along with the factory troubleshooting information for each code. With that old a Vibe and that mileage, your going to need that manual. Another thing is the odometer will only go to 299,999 in these cars as that is all the higher the memory can count but if you are hitting 8,000 rpms with the engine, you will not need to worry about that.

BassetVIBEs1984
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Joined: Thu Apr 20, 2017 9:14 pm

Re: picking up an 03 vibe gt on monday, what to look for ?

Postby BassetVIBEs1984 » Mon Apr 24, 2017 1:21 am

jolts, why do you say i wont have to worry about the mileage on the odometer ? if the motor was built for 8,200 rpms, why wouldnt i be able to take it to 8,200 rpms ? constantly even ... ?

zbyers
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Location: Sheffield, Pennsylvania

Re: picking up an 03 vibe gt on monday, what to look for ?

Postby zbyers » Sat May 06, 2017 4:21 am

Jolt's point about the mileage is the engine/tranny will definitely last...But it's all the other components that may not. The hoses, the radiator, etc. If the body is in great shape, it runs great, it's probably worth pulling the trigger. Also to his point though...You can easily find a lower mileage one, for probably the same price.
Ruby- 03 Salsa, Ray[is]AWD- 04 Salsa AWD, Simon- 03 Silver "Faux by Four"
Raven- 03 Abyss GT, Neptune- 05 AWD, Robyn- 07 Stealth Gray Metallic, Mystic- 09 AWD

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