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  1. #41
    Carseat Crazy
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    Re: My 07 Pacifica caught on FIRE!

    [QUOTE=jen_nah;179879]

    I hate when I see/hear people (not saying anyone on here) say
    "GM/Ford need to go belly up.". What these people don't understand what that would do to our countries ecomony. You thought the last recession was bad just think if we lost the big automakers. They contribute a HUFE chuck to our economy/taxes/etc...

    I also hate when I hear people say they hate automobile unions. WHY? Unions are a good thing. They keep workers working. Sure they make higher pay but is that a bad thing? Don't they deserve to be able to provide for their families like we do? Most people don't relieze that US autoworkers are less likely to be injuried on the job then forgien autoworkers. They provide penisons, retirement, healthcare where Honda/Toyota don't get some of those luxuries. That is where unions are a great thing.

    [QUOTE]

    DD May'03 46#(fully dressed) 44" FF Radian65, Radian80,and SafeGuard Go (travel)
    Previous Seats: RF SnugRide, RF/FF Britax Galaxy (similar to RA), RF/FF Graco ComfortSport (waste of money), FF MA (Olivia, I love that cover)

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  3. #42
    CPS Advocate lovinwaves's Avatar
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    Re: My 07 Pacifica caught on FIRE!

    Quote Originally Posted by jen_nah View Post
    stevel,

    There are several othe threads on here. They mostly started out from someone posting a question in regards to a type of vehicle and it went from there.

    I am all for people buying what they like & need out of a vehicle. All I want to do is educate that some of the reliablity/resell is a myth.

    lovinwaves said in her above post about forgien looking nicer afte 5yrs. Things like that aren't manufacture based. That is owner based. It' how the vehicle owner takes care of the vehicle. For example my dh truck is 6yrs old and look brand new (no dents, dings, scratches on it). This is because we take pride in our property and take the time and effort to keep our vehicles looking nice. I see all kinds of vehicles (all brands) around here that look like crap that are just few years old b/c the owner doesn't care.
    Actually, that's not what I meant. I am talking more about Style, and the model "looking old", and I never said that Foreigns don't look old after 5 years. I just said that was something important to me when purchasing a vehicle. I can think of plenty foreign that I don't think look good after 5 years, and I'm NOT talking about how well the owner cared for the vehicle
    Melissa
    Peyton 10
    Camden 9
    And a new baby on the way

  4. #43
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    Re: My 07 Pacifica caught on FIRE!

    Quote Originally Posted by jen_nah View Post
    lovinwaves said in her above post about forgien looking nicer afte 5yrs. Things like that aren't manufacture based. That is owner based. It' how the vehicle owner takes care of the vehicle. For example my dh truck is 6yrs old and look brand new (no dents, dings, scratches on it). This is because we take pride in our property and take the time and effort to keep our vehicles looking nice. I see all kinds of vehicles (all brands) around here that look like crap that are just few years old b/c the owner doesn't care.
    lovinwaves' comment wasn't untrue at all. some makes just hold up visually better than others with similar care. that is a fact, and i have witnessed it firsthand. every VW i have owned has had the interior disintegrate after a few years and less than 50,000 miles. the plastics begin to scratch and peel, and the upholstery wears thin and becomes threadbare after a short time. that has not happened on any japanese vehicle i have owned. on the other hand, the carpeting on my almost new mazda3 is cheap and already wearing thin, and it only has 9,000 cared-for miles. this was a shortcut that mazda made, no doubt. i just have to live with it. another issue i've experienced first hand is interior plastics fading/discloring. this has happened to all the american cars i've owned throughout the 80s and 90s but hasn't happened on a german or japanese car i've owned. i also recall that the exterior plastics of some of the american cars i've owned (weatherstripping, for example) shrank and split over time, again nothing that has ever happened on a japanese car i've owned. also realize i've owned four american cars, four german cars, and five japanese cars, so my sample number is significant enough at least for dicsussion. so the argument that the way a car looks after five years has nothing to do with the make and everything to do with the owner's maintenance is not true.
    Two girls, 7 and 6. Trek Mountain, Specialized Hotrock, Soma Buena Vista, Bike Friday tandem, and multiple other bikes. Oh, and a Mazda5.

  5. #44
    Carseat Crazy
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    Re: My 07 Pacifica caught on FIRE!

    Quote Originally Posted by UlrikeDG View Post
    I recommend starting out with crash test results and going from there:
    Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) Tests (independent)
    National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) Tests (government)
    What's up with the difference in ratings from one site to the next? We have a Pontiac Montana SV6 and in the insurance site it rates a POOR and on the NHTSA site it's averaging a GOOD 4/5 stars. ??? Strange.

  6. #45
    Admin - CPS Technician Emeritus Jeanum's Avatar
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    Re: My 07 Pacifica caught on FIRE!

    NHTSA and IIHS crash tests differ in parameters such as the crash speed and impact type. The IIHS tests tend to be more rigorous than NHTSA's. For instance, the NHTSA frontal test is at 35 mph while the IIHS conducts an offset frontal crash test at 40 mph. http://www.safercar.gov/info.htm#iq8 and http://www.iihs.org/ratings/default.aspx provide the details of the NHTSA and IIHS crash testing parameters.

    www.informedforlife.org is another excellent resource for evaluating a model's safety. The site's owner compiles all of the various crash test results for each vehicle model, and plugs the results into a formula to assign the model an overall safety rating score. It's very helpful for comparing different vehicles, apples to oranges.
    Regards,
    Jean

    DD1 Age 16, 66" Driver's Ed
    DD2 Age 12, 64" 5 steps

    Click here if you wish to view the full size version of my avatar

  7. #46
    CPSDarren - Admin SafeDad's Avatar
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    Re: My 07 Pacifica caught on FIRE!

    The tests measure responses to different types of impacts. One does not supercede the other, they are complementary. Ideally, you want a vehicle that does well in both sets of frontal and side impacts.

  8. #47
    Carseat Crazy Erika Ruth's Avatar
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    Re: My 07 Pacifica caught on FIRE!

    We are trading our Honda Accord for a Town and Country. I have looked at the Crash ratings, and see that in a big frontal collision, I might break my legs. I can live with that. (great huh?). But, when I compared it to other models in the same price range, they did just as bad. So, we'll just have to go with it.

    I also know about the seat belts. I'll look at how much it is to replace them, but I've also decided to NOT put two car seats next to each other (so they don't rub or bounce on the stalk). I'll also be a stickler about loose objects in the car (minimizing the risk as much as possible).

    Hopefully, those things, along with having properly restrained children will help a lot.

    The T&C we are getting is a 1997, and we are trading a 1998 Accord with the same amount of miles.

    BOTH cars are holding up fine. Our Honda has a wanky lock that sometimes works and sometimes doesn't, and right now, after some freak opened a car door on our door handle, it can't be opened from the outside (we can get it fixed, but haven't bothered, in an accident, they can just break the window, or it can be opened from the inside, so it is no different than having it "locked"). The paint on both is fine, the interior on both is fine, and the materials are holding up fine. So, I just assume, as some of you have suggested, that it is model specific. Some are more cheaply made than others (and for a while, the US cars had that reputation, and it is hard for us coasters (west coast), who are used to SO MANY foreign cars on the road to get over that block that "American is bad" (Really, I only know 2 people who drive American where I live, and one of them is a 2006 Suburban, and the other one is a very old Ford Van).

    The real question as I see it, that has been rattling around in my brain a lot, is, I am thinking more and more about going all American. I just wonder how much we, as a nation, rely on our "trade partners". I was wondering if it would even be possible to run a household on ONLY American made products. Could I buy an American made toothbrush, where not only was it assembled in the US, but the plastic was manufactured here as well? Even if I made my own clothing, most fabric is made in China. Even the food I eat, has ingredients from China. (Like the Veggie Bootie that just had the outbreak). Could I buy American made baby bottles? What about a crib?

    And the big question.... Is there an American made car seat?

    I have been tinkering with the idea of only buying American made products for an entire month and seeing what would happen. My mom thinks I'll SAVE a lot of money, because I won't be able to find much to buy, even though the items I buy will be more expensive.

    Has anyone done this experiment?

    Erika

  9. #48
    Carseat Crazy Erika Ruth's Avatar
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    Re: My 07 Pacifica caught on FIRE!

    Totally OT, but fun... Okay, I found someone who did it, went an ENTIRE year without buying China made...

    I also discovered.... Cosco Carseats are made in the USA.

    here is the link I found on living without China.

    http://www.csmonitor.com/2005/1220/p09s01-coop.html

  10. #49
    CPST Instructor
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    Re: My 07 Pacifica caught on FIRE!

    Quote Originally Posted by Erika Ruth View Post
    Totally OT, but fun... Okay, I found someone who did it, went an ENTIRE year without buying China made...

    I also discovered.... Cosco Carseats are made in the USA.

    here is the link I found on living without China.

    http://www.csmonitor.com/2005/1220/p09s01-coop.html
    That is cool about Cosco. I know Britax is US but the covers are Mexico.
    Jenny
    Senior CPS Tech-Instructor & Mommy of 2 girls
    K1 12 yrs old- 61" & 100lbs in vehicle seat belt
    K2 10 yrs old- 59" & 92lbs in vehicle seat belt

  11. #50
    CPS Technician Loves2sing's Avatar
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    Re: My 07 Pacifica caught on FIRE!

    Wow, I am so glad that you're safe! That is crazy!!! Makes me a little scared about our new truck! As far as new vehicle recommendations, I second the Mazda CX9. It is a awesome SUV!
    Amanda- CRST & Mom
    J-08/01/05 & M-09/14/08

  12. #51
    Senior Community Member MySillyKids's Avatar
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    Re: My 07 Pacifica caught on FIRE!

    Quote Originally Posted by Erika Ruth View Post
    Totally OT, but fun... Okay, I found someone who did it, went an ENTIRE year without buying China made...

    I also discovered.... Cosco Carseats are made in the USA.

    here is the link I found on living without China.

    http://www.csmonitor.com/2005/1220/p09s01-coop.html
    Yes, she stopped living with out china, but she still didn't seek out the full 100% USA experience. She bought shoes from Italy.

    So, its either China, or some other country.

  13. #52
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    Re: My 07 Pacifica caught on FIRE!

    Quote Originally Posted by MySillyBoys View Post
    Yes, she stopped living with out china, but she still didn't seek out the full 100% USA experience. She bought shoes from Italy.

    So, its either China, or some other country.
    I haven't throughly looked over the above posted site. I can say in countries like Italy the labor laws are by far more superiour then in China & some other countries.

    I love buying custom boutique clothes for the girls & myself. I may pay more but at least I know their are made in the US and several ladies I buy my custom pieces only buy fabric made in the US.

    Sure I can't cut China products completely out of my life but if there is a US maker or even another country with better labor laws I will buy that item instead even if it costs more. But, When it comes to big ticket items I am sure going with US brands over forgein if I have the options.
    Jenny
    Senior CPS Tech-Instructor & Mommy of 2 girls
    K1 12 yrs old- 61" & 100lbs in vehicle seat belt
    K2 10 yrs old- 59" & 92lbs in vehicle seat belt

  14. #53
    CPSDarren - Admin SafeDad's Avatar
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    Re: My 07 Pacifica caught on FIRE!

    Quote Originally Posted by jen_nah View Post
    I haven't throughly looked over the above posted site. I can say in countries like Italy the labor laws are by far more superiour then in China & some other countries.

    I love buying custom boutique clothes for the girls & myself. I may pay more but at least I know their are made in the US and several ladies I buy my custom pieces only buy fabric made in the US.

    Sure I can't cut China products completely out of my life but if there is a US maker or even another country with better labor laws I will buy that item instead even if it costs more. But, When it comes to big ticket items I am sure going with US brands over forgein if I have the options.

    I have no problem buying from countries I perceive to have similar costs of living, similar environmental protections, similar protections for workers and other issues that make costs of doing business higher.

    Countries like China, India and others in the far east do not generally have these basic protections. Of course, there are some exceptions like Japan. The problem is like everyone else has said, it's tough to find many items that are not made in China.

    Right now we import the vast majority of smaller items and lower paying jobs to China and the far east. Higher paying jobs are being outsourced there now, too, which is a very disturbing trend for our economy. Just wait till they start importing competent cars from China. Japanese cars and Korean cars will be the least of the worries the domestic companies have. They'll be put out of business by companies they partner with right now and have essentially already given them all the manufacturing knowledge they need:-(

  15. #54
    Carseat Crazy
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    Re: My 07 Pacifica caught on FIRE!

    When it comes to the quality of interior and exterior trim, ergonomics and attractiveness, I can certainly cite examples where the Japanese had lagged far behind the US automakers for a long time. Inteh last decade, Japanese styling and interior quality of materials has improved quite a bit and often rivals (or exceeds) a US vehicle in the same class. Btu 15 years ago, even the "high end" Japanese cars were often plastic-y, uncomfortable and made with lower-end trim and interior mateials (IMO).

    For example- the Ford/Mazda platform share models in the late 1980s (Mazda 323 and Mercury Tracer). As dorky as the Tracer name was, it certaily had a more luxerious interior, better-lasting door latches and higher quality interior fabrics. I saw many 323s on the road with missing exterior trim. Not so with the Tracers. Other issues plagued that era 323 as well (brakes, exterior paint).

    Also, more recently, in the early Ford Escapes/Mazda Tributes, teh Escapes had much better interior selctionadn mor e"solid" feel, and that was just 5-6 years ago. I'll admit that the more recent Tributes are much better styled.


    I just dont think it serves well to generalize US vs Japanese/Korean vs European. If you compare apples to apples (cars in same performance and price class) my opinion is that there are success stories and failures from all the automakers. I mean, a BMW 550 will certainly out-perform a Chevy Cavalier in all categories, but that is not a fair comparison.

    JMHO.
    DD May'03 46#(fully dressed) 44" FF Radian65, Radian80,and SafeGuard Go (travel)
    Previous Seats: RF SnugRide, RF/FF Britax Galaxy (similar to RA), RF/FF Graco ComfortSport (waste of money), FF MA (Olivia, I love that cover)

  16. #55
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    Re: My 07 Pacifica caught on FIRE!

    Quote Originally Posted by Dragonflymama View Post
    For example- the Ford/Mazda platform share models in the late 1980s (Mazda 323 and Mercury Tracer). As dorky as the Tracer name was, it certaily had a more luxerious interior, better-lasting door latches and higher quality interior fabrics. I saw many 323s on the road with missing exterior trim. Not so with the Tracers. Other issues plagued that era 323 as well (brakes, exterior paint).
    that's strange, because if you compare the next generation up from the mazda 323/mercury tracer (mazda protege/ford escort), the protege clearly had the advantage to interior and exterior fit and finish. i had friends with escorts (and i have a sister who currently still owns an old escort), while i myself had a protege, and the difference was clear as day. it was also reflected in the price, as the protege was slightly more expensive than the escort. slightly different marketing niches.

    my father also owned the older generation 323 (we're a big mazda family). btw, it shared the same exact brakes as the mercury tracer, so the 323 couldn't have had brake issues that the tracer didn't. and the missing trim, that's because you could special order a stripped-down 323 for a base price of $6300 back in 1989 (which is what my father had ). vinyl seats, no side moldings, no wheel covers and no radio. the tracer was marketed as a mercury, which is considered a more "premium" version of a ford. so it didn't make sense for mercury to sell a stripped down tracer... of course they put the nicer fabrics in it. but it's also comparing cars from two slightly different marketing niches.

    if you want to go back 15 years, the best comparisons would be cars aimed at the same market niches, such as chevy cavalier versus toyota corolla versus honda civic versus ford escort, or honda accord versus toyota camry versus pontiac grand am versus ford taurus, or acura legend versus lexus ES300 versus caddy catera (hah!). when you put it into that perspective, it's clear that the japanese pretty much always had the advantage. but as i said earlier, that gap is narrowing, for sure.
    Two girls, 7 and 6. Trek Mountain, Specialized Hotrock, Soma Buena Vista, Bike Friday tandem, and multiple other bikes. Oh, and a Mazda5.

  17. #56
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    Re: My 07 Pacifica caught on FIRE!

    some points:

    i would never actually rank mazda as being foreign any more. i wouldn't touch one with a ten foot pole after problems i've seen surface in them, not to mention they have a very cheap interior look and feel. the one thing i will give mazda (**cough*** ford....) on the current cars is the exterior is decent.

    i would never buy a nissan-too many issues and excruciatingly painfully cheap looking interiors. they get worse with each new model they release it seems.....

    saab-again-not with a 10 foot pole....

    most of the "foreign" ones that american auto makers now have huge stakes in have slid pretty far down in overall quality of looks and they seem to be heading the same direction reliability wise.

    one major issue with reliability is what you consider a reliability problem and what you don't. what i notice is a large bulk of people seem to side pationately with either american or one foreign make. and the reliability issues vary drastically. a foreign manufacturer car is deemed "unreliable" due to a rattle in the dash or a cd player that flaked out. in american manufacturer counterparts, those are laughable nuisances at best. not at all reliability issues. given most of the sources reporting reliability are taking any and all problems into account to determine reliability, this puts a major glitch into what determines reliability. you cannot get accurate ratings from that at all. what determines "reliability" in a consumer's mind is their perception of what they think they should get quality wise out of the car they're buying. and alot of what you think you should get is based off of prior experiences with cars. if you had a car that needed 2 engine rebuilds in 5 years of ownership then have one that only needed one rebuild in 5 years, you'd consider that a huge leap in the realm of reliability. however, there may be another car you never considered that would've gotten you 10 years and double the miles with no rebuilds. kwim?

    i am all against unions. i have worked in a union dictated business and numerous ones sans unions. i'd choose no union anyday because unions eventually HURT the employees. the problem is once in the unionized mindset, you think you are owed this pay raise and that pay raise regardless of your work quality and how the business is doing. it's honestly no wonder so many union shops have dug themselves right into the ground. while, yes, anyone in their right mind would love to work for a union and get consistent pay raises and be able to buy the best this and that, there is a flip side to being the overpaid and benefitted employee..... when it all comes crashing down because the comapny cannot support the overinflated paychecks, you're out of a job. and you will have a hard time finding another job that will enable you to continue that level of living.

    honda and toyota in particular have invested loads of money in building new plants in the us. they are hiring us employees. quite possibly hiring some of those dropped by ford, gm, etc, whenever the going gets so tough that those former employees are finally willing to work for a reasonable pay rate in order to put food on the table.

    once the quality of american products picks up (and in my opinion they still have a LOOOONG way to go), then i'lll consider more american made products.

    till then, bring on the honda's/sony's/etc. i'm investing my hard earned money in the things that i get the greatest return on my investment in.

    oh, and on the subject of what cars look newer/older? defintiely foreign ones have a leg up on this as well. it doesn't matter how beat up the 10 year old toyota or honda is, it still looks more current than any of the equivalently aged ford/gm.

    i wouldn't even touch a hyundai..... reliability better in recent years? compared to what???? maybe compared to their prior vehicles, but certainly not compared to the mass market......

  18. #57
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    Re: My 07 Pacifica caught on FIRE!

    UPDATE: A man from the NHTSA contacted me. Another Pacifica caught on fire just like mine did. Our stories are identical. Two other Pacificas amost caught on fire due to a power steering fluid leak (the hose came loose). He believes this is why mine caught on fire. He requested my photos, and said the NHTSA will probably do a formal investigation. I am to check back with him in 2 weeks.
    Nicole
    PS-We are still very happy with our Saturn Outlook!

  19. #58
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    Re: My 07 Pacifica caught on FIRE!

    WOW! I didn't see this post until now, I know it's old.. but I just wanted to say I'm glad you're okay!!

    The SAME thing happened to us last June with our '05 Grand Am ... lit up for "no reason" .. we've never recieved a formal report yet. We were thinking of getting a Pacifica but DH got a blazer instead and I drive the f150.. thank GOODNESS we never went with a Pacifica... I can imagine what insurance would think if we had 2 vehicles burn to the groud.

  20. #59
    Moderator MomToEliEm's Avatar
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    Re: My 07 Pacifica caught on FIRE!

    Quote Originally Posted by npr74 View Post
    UPDATE: A man from the NHTSA contacted me. Another Pacifica caught on fire just like mine did. Our stories are identical. Two other Pacificas amost caught on fire due to a power steering fluid leak (the hose came loose). He believes this is why mine caught on fire. He requested my photos, and said the NHTSA will probably do a formal investigation. I am to check back with him in 2 weeks.
    Nicole
    PS-We are still very happy with our Saturn Outlook!
    I sure hope that they figure out the cause and issue a recall if needed. No one else should go through the same thing you went through.

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