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jwallacq

Nov 16, 2014, 8:41 AM

Post #1 of 13 (4128 views)

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Pontiac Montana minvan parts & service?

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I guess this is a very "long-shot" question, but does anybody have experience (either good or bad) with trying to get parts and service for Pontiac minivans in Mexico?

I have the opportunity to buy a 2004 model at a very good price for my upcoming trip to the Yucatan, but I'm also trying to minimize my risk of getting stuck in some little town for a week or two, waiting for a part to be flown in from the USA.

Thanks in Advance! John W.



CozICan

Nov 16, 2014, 9:09 AM

Post #2 of 13 (4119 views)

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Re: [jwallacq] Pontiac Montana minvan parts & service?

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I live on Cozumel which is close to the Yucatan and have a 2003 Chevy Venture Minivan which except for a bit of trim should be identical to your van. There are many Venture Vans from that era here which makes service fairly easy. Some parts I have friends bring me from the U.S. because theye are much, much more expensive here and other parts are actually cheaper. I have no idea why. There are lots of Chevrolets in Mexico but I suspect Pontiacs were not exported to Mexico because I don't think I have ever seen one here.


jwallacq

Nov 16, 2014, 10:29 AM

Post #3 of 13 (4107 views)

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Re: [CozICan] Pontiac Montana minvan parts & service?

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Thanks for the feedback.

The wikipedia article says that they stopped selling Pontiac minivans in Mexico in 2009, but it doesn't say when they started selling them, and it doesn't give any clue as to how popular they were. (And of course, Wikipedia isn't always reliable anyhow.)

If I do decide to buy this thing, maybe I ought to decide which vital parts are likely to fail without warning (e.g. the fuel pump) and bring spares with me as a precaution.


CozICan

Nov 16, 2014, 11:26 AM

Post #4 of 13 (4096 views)

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Re: [jwallacq] Pontiac Montana minvan parts & service?

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The parts I have replaced here are:

The cable that connects the gearshift to the transmission.
Both outside mirrors because they got busted
Both front headlight assemblies because the became so yellowed that they didn't let much light out
One taillight assembly because I backed into something
One window control switch
Fuel Tank Level float assembly
The Window washer pump twice because I used water instead of W/W Fluid and the water corroded the pump from the inside. I figured because it doesn't freeze here water and vinegar would be fine... WRONG I was told that there is an anti-corrosive in the fluid

Brake pads purchased here

Tires purchased here

As you can tell by my list it would be hard to predict most things that I replaced. The sun here can do strange things to plastic parts, it makes them brittle. That is probably why my side mirrors broke and I will have to do something with my front grill soon, it is plastic.

My van has about 160,000 Kms and it has been in the sun here for 7 years.

Every part that I did have brought to me from the U.S. is available here but at a premium cost.


esperanza

Nov 17, 2014, 4:43 AM

Post #5 of 13 (4063 views)

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Re: [CozICan] Pontiac Montana minvan parts & service?

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CozICan, for future reference: when your headlight assembly becomes cloudy, have it polished. Polishing is way less costly than replacing. The last time I did it, the price was 80 pesos for both. They looked like new once they were done.

http://www.mexicocooks.typepad.com









CozICan

Nov 17, 2014, 4:50 AM

Post #6 of 13 (4060 views)

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Re: [esperanza] Pontiac Montana minvan parts & service?

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esperanza... How long did this polishing last before it needed to be redone ??? My old lights were way too bad buy the replacements could be done now.


esperanza

Nov 18, 2014, 7:47 AM

Post #7 of 13 (4025 views)

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Re: [CozICan] Pontiac Montana minvan parts & service?

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I had the car for about 5 years after the polishing; it never needed to be re-done. When I sold the car, the headlights were as good as new.

http://www.mexicocooks.typepad.com









chinagringo


Nov 18, 2014, 8:42 AM

Post #8 of 13 (4018 views)

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Re: [CozICan] Pontiac Montana minvan parts & service?

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Primary causes of "fogging,pitting or yellowing" of plastic headlight lenses is high UV from altitude and blowing sand or road grit. Stores like Auto Zone sell kits but in Mexico, many enterprising car wash guys offer this service. Years ago, we had a guy wash, polish and detail the entire exterior of our Ford Windstar while we had a lengthy lunch in Patzcuaro. This including buffing the headlight lenses. While we had agreed upon a fee of $200MXN, I gave him $250MXN because of the excellent job done. Naturally it rained later that afternoon!

The headlight job lasted for a number of years here in NM where we have similar UV and blowing sand issues.

Regards,
Neil
Albuquerque, NM



esperanza

Nov 18, 2014, 9:03 AM

Post #9 of 13 (4012 views)

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Re: [chinagringo] Pontiac Montana minvan parts & service?

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I bet the same guy did my headlights--in front of the building where the Restaurante Primer Piso used to be.

http://www.mexicocooks.typepad.com









chinagringo


Nov 18, 2014, 9:26 AM

Post #10 of 13 (4010 views)

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Re: [esperanza] Pontiac Montana minvan parts & service?

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Don't remember exactly other than it was one of the side streets just off the Plaza Grande.
Regards,
Neil
Albuquerque, NM



esperanza

Nov 18, 2014, 9:45 PM

Post #11 of 13 (3981 views)

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Re: [chinagringo] Pontiac Montana minvan parts & service?

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That would be the place. How funny--and the guy did great work.

http://www.mexicocooks.typepad.com









RickS


Nov 19, 2014, 11:20 AM

Post #12 of 13 (3962 views)

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Re: [esperanza] Pontiac Montana minvan parts & service?

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As might be expected, 'all' guys doing this don't necessarily do great work. I had the guy, at Lakeside next to SuperLake who also sells wiper blades, do my car a while back. The lights weren't THAT bad but I said, 'why not'. Well, why not is that he did it by hand with a soiled rag (and product of course) and I got so-so results.

The up side is that he made a peso or two and I wasn't expecting much anyway (which is what I got).

Moral.... pick your worker well.


(This post was edited by RickS on Nov 19, 2014, 11:22 AM)


CozICan

Nov 20, 2014, 4:59 PM

Post #13 of 13 (3927 views)

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Re: [jwallacq] Pontiac Montana minvan parts & service?

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I was at my local Auto Repair Shop here on Cozumel today and there was a Pontiac Montana of about the same year as yours in for repairs. The owner told me he was having problems getting parts for it because the vehicle does not even exist on his suppliers books. He also said the many of the parts from a Chevy Venture are interchangeable but some are not. Sorry to have to tell you this.
 
 
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