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Discussion Starter #1
Well it's done, gone to Buick hospice or to the next poor sole who wishes to spend $7,000+ on an 09 Enclave with 144k miles.
Bought my used '09 with 80K miles 5 years ago. A lot of miles and I went against my gut and the recommendation of CU. At the time I was working in the home office and was mostly just driving around town so I thought 80K was going to work. Should have trusted my gut. :(

Only a month or 2 in the AC Evaporator failed and $1,700 later I experienced my first pleasure of owning a used Enclave.
Then my job reorged and I started commuting 30 miles a day to the office.
At around 110K the springs and struts went, chalk up another $1,500
10K later went # 5 coil & plug, followed by 1,3,6. That's another $1,500 which took out the catalytic for another $900.

While all this was happening a headlight went out $300
The Nav DVD reader started failing and the rear hatch actuator started to jam.
But at least I avoided the transmission failure, but 20K after the GM extended warranty ended the trans began to slip like crazy. Looking into the teeth of a trans and another $1,000 for a full break job I called it quits at 144k miles.
Carmax offered me $4,500 last year but I tried to get a couple more years. The dealer knocked the offer down to $3,500. I took it an ran.
Now I'm a happy owner of a gently used Subaru with 23k miles. As for the Enclave, the dealer cleaned it up and has it for sale on the lot bad trans, Nav and all for $7,500.

Conclusion, the Enclave is a gas guzzling behemoth that is pure joy to own until the warranty runs out. It's final act of absolution was to save me from a left turn on red ticket because the front end is so large it broke the plane of the stop line allowing me to escape a $100 fine.

Happy motoring fellow Enclave owners. Heed my advice and enjoy your Enclave while you can but try not to push the envelope.
 

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Sorry to hear Bigal56 had issues/costs.

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For others- dont always have to use the dealer.
Small shops or DIY


I replaced my struts/shocks.
I paid $386 for the parts. Installed myself.


Transmission slipping?

Was it really slipping or Delayed shifts?- some may describe as slipping?
I replaced the TECHM discs- $107, did it myself. Trans now shifts like new.

GEN 1- up to 2011 can have this issue.


$300 for headlight bulb- change bulb via the wheel well. THe bulb on ebay/amazon are about $40-60.


$1000 for brake job. Use a small shop.


with 150,000 on mine. Im still on the factory rotors and rear pads.
I replaced my front pads at 100,000..... with a pair of new/used pads that I bought from a member on here.
My front pads at 100K- still had plenty of life left. But- I was doing 100,000 preventative maintenance so I replaced them.


As for the coils/plugs--- they are a known issue on the 09's.
THey can be replaced with newer plugs and coils.
Unfortunately- many folks replaced once the problems occur.....because of misfires.
I believe some members on here- have replaced before the issue arises.
 

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As for the coils/plugs--- they are a known issue on the 09's.
THey can be replaced with newer plugs and coils.
Unfortunately- many folks replaced once the problems occur.....because of misfires.
I believe some members on here- have replaced before the issue arises.
Hi rbarrios. How often do you change plugs? Mine, all plugs and coils were replaced at 67K and now at 117K, P0301 code was showing up 2 weeks ago. Tried to decode it and pour a techron concentrate plus in un almost empty gas tank and ran about 30 miles before filling up gas. It runs about 300 miles now, and the light does not come back yet.
My plan is to replace all the plugs only this month before travelling a 1.9k miles round trip to Florida next month.
 

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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
Like just about any car, If you can do your own work, you can keep it running.
Yes, a small shop is good for some things, but the Enclave is expensive to maintain no matter what.
So preface what I say with "unless you are a mechanic", Get rid of this car as soon as the warranty expires. "Unless you are or have a friend on speed dial" who is a mechanic.
 

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Hi rbarrios. How often do you change plugs? Mine, all plugs and coils were replaced at 67K and now at 117K, P0301 code was showing up 2 weeks ago. Tried to decode it and pour a techron concentrate plus in un almost empty gas tank and ran about 30 miles before filling up gas. It runs about 300 miles now, and the light does not come back yet.
My plan is to replace all the plugs only this month before travelling a 1.9k miles round trip to Florida next month.

I changed my plugs at 100,000. thats it.
About to hit 150,000.
 

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I bought my 2011 with 154,000 miles on it and it is now approaching 190,000. Only things we've done is put new tires on it and had to do front brake pads when we were down in Florida. Went to Auto Zone and bought a cheap set for $24 and put them on in my nieces drive way. When I bought it wasn't concerned with the miles on it after I drove it. Then once I was on here and read all the horror stories it got me wondering. But think they are like every other car. If you get a good one you're good. If you get a bad one you're screwed. If you go to any of the other boards for different cars you'll read the same horror stories you're reading here. And with the Subaru's you need to change the timing belts in those at about 70,000 and if you don't you're just asking for big trouble. Sorry you had so much trouble with your's but there are lots of us out there that love them and have had very little trouble.
 

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These vehicles can be expensive to maintain - ask me how I know. My dealer quoted me $1200 just to replace struts and shocks, no other parts. For about $1000 or a little less I purchased Bilstein OEM struts/shocks, all new OEM strut bearings, bushings, etc. (only reused front springs), front sway bar bushings & sway bar links, rear bump stops, and all tools needed to do the job (strut/shock tool set, spring compressor, some sockets/wrenches I didn't have, larger breaker bar for rear suspension bolts/nuts, and grease for front sway bar links). I did the work myself and it wasn't too hard to change struts/shocks and all related components.

I did pay a transmission shop a lot of have my trans rebuilt at 72K miles due to a delay in shifting into drive and not shifting sometimes as I started off. Probably was the disks rbarrios said. They found burnt discs and rebuilt it for me; expensive, but I wanted to ensure the vehicle is safe for my family to ride in so it was worth the piece of mind.
 

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Bottom line, these vehicle shouldn't have the transmission, evaporator, power steering rack, timing chain, ignition coil, and other issues that they have had, many happening to owners well before 100K miles. It shows that GM uses cheap parts that are not made to last. It's sad because the poor reliability has ruined GM's reputation over and over again. They just don't get it - customers want a RELIABLE vehicle! It should be no surprise why customers turn to Toyota and Honda for their next vehicle after owning GM.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Agree with you Gig. I'm over 60 and have owned GM vehicles most of my life and this was the worst, most unreliable, expensive to repair car I ever owned. It really soured me after being a lifelong GM owner.
RB clearly has his own garage and is up to doing his own repairs. But just because you have the tools, equipment, and experience to DIY doesn't make the Enclave any more reliable.
 

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I always bought GM and was planning to buy an Acadia. My wife and I liked it for being smaller and more maneuverable while still offering good space. But the $4500 transmission repair changed that so we went with Toyota for our next vehicle. I still have the Enclave but cringe thinking about what else will happen on my dime. I like the GM vehicles, but when my family's safety is at stake I had to cut loose from GM. Maybe when GM builds as reliable vehicle as Toyota I will come back.
 
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