My dealer is unwilling to find the source of the wind noise my car generates. What can I do?

Dear Car Talk

Dear Car Talk | Sep 01, 1999

Dear Tom and Ray:

I read your column every week, and am writing to you with an urgent plea for help
with my almost-new Toyota Camry V-6 LE. At speeds of 40 mph and above, the car
sounds like it's going through a wind tunnel. There is a tremendous amount of
wind noise and turbulence which seems to be coming from the front and sides of
the car. I have taken my car to two different Toyota dealerships, and nothing
satisfactory has been done to eliminate this horrible noise. Both dealerships
have told me "it is unfortunate, but sometimes wind noise cannot be corrected." I
find this totally unacceptable. This is the sixth new Toyota that I have owned,
and this is my first major problem. Can you please help me? -- Betty

TOM: The best way we can help you, Betty, is by printing your letter. We agree
with you. This IS unacceptable. And I'm willing to bet people higher up at Toyota
think this is unacceptable, too.

RAY: There's no question about it, wind noises can be very hard to find. But on a
new car like this one, the dealer is obligated to find it and fix it for you. You
may have to leave it with them for a week or two so they can experiment with some
high-tech diagnostic instruments, like duct tape and foam rubber.

TOM: But they can't just say, "Tough luck, lady. We know you spent 20 grand on a
car, you just can't drive it over 40 mph, OK?"

RAY: Honda Accords had a wind noise problem, and it turned out to be the seal on
the windshield. Other companies have had side-view mirrors, doors, seals and roof
racks that catch the wind and make noise. It's usually not a hard problem to fix.
It's just hard to find.

TOM: Call your dealership and ask for the name and number of the "zone manager."
The zone manager is one step up from the dealerships. I'm sure he'll intervene
and help you get this fixed. If not, write back, and we'll embarrass Toyota

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