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vauxdoc, vauxhall master tech
Category: UK Car
Satisfied Customers: 1192
Experience:  over 25 years from viva to vectra
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An 04 reg vauxhall astra SRI..alarm..few minutes..hazard lights

Customer Question

I have owned an 04 reg vauxhall astra SRI for 4 years now and every winter we have had a problem with the alarm. Once the weather gets cold it goes off almost every time you start the engine. It sounds for a few minutes, the hazard lights do not flash, then turns off and is fine until you take the key out the ignition and then start the engine again later. I have taken it into a Vauxhall garage (no other garage will even look at it for me as its a factory fitted vauxhall alarm) 3 times during the last few years, paid for the priveledge of having it looked at only to be told there is nothing in the alarm log to say it has gone off at all and they can find no problem with it. 2 Years ago I had a brand new battery put in the car as I couldnt start the engine several times during that winter and was having to jump start it each time, and up until that point the alarm had been sounding quite frequently on starting the engine. After having a new battery the alarm was fine for the rest of the winter months which is a first for this car. Now the weather has turned cold once more the alarm is going off 4 or 5 times daily, mostly in the mornings so far when it is coldest and its becoming very frustrating and embarrassing. I believe Vauxhall now charge about seventy pounds just to look at a car and I am not prepared to pay this only to be told again that there is nothing in the log and nothing they can do about it. I have asked before about having it disconnected but was told this is not an option. I am at a loss what to do! My neighbours are not happy at having to listen to my alarm going off early mornings, several times, on a daily basis and I am sure a lot of people are wondering why I have still not had the problem with my car fixed. I dread driving it, its been a really good car apart from this ongoing problem. I have seen online that a lot of Vauxhall astra owners have the same problem and Vauxhall say they do not know how to fix it. I wondered if you had any ideas what the problem is? I am pretty sure, obviously, its something to do with the battery. The car does not seem to start as promptly as it usually does, even during a bitter winter, as it does this year. Although it does still start first time. It sounds like it might be struggling a bit and am a bit concerned that when it does get very cold it wont start at all again. I am fed up of being told by Vauxhall that there is nothing wrong but there obviously is. I want my car fixed as its a real problem to us all. What can I do about it when no one can find anything wrong? If I take it into the Vauxhall garage again and they tell me nothing is wrong and they cant fix it what can I do about it? Surely I am not expected to put up with this for the cars lifetime?
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: UK Car
Expert:  vauxdoc replied 6 years ago.
Welcome to Just Answer , I think there may be 2 faults here firstly the vehicle battery may have a drain and as it looses voltage the engine will turn over slower and result in the poor starting ,the drain can be caused by a consumer not shutting down properly such as the radio , this can be tested with a decent multimeter and most good garages can do this test , not just main dealers.

As for the alarm this is a very common fault and I don't know why your dealer hasn't sorted it out ! The alarm siren has built in rechargeable batteries and they degrade in time causing this exact same false alarm , unfortunately the batteries can't be changed an the siren will have to be replaced , they cost around £60 , this can also be done at an independent garage.

I hope this helps , best regards XXXXX XXXXX
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
I had a new siren fitted on the car about 6 months ago as the alarm started to go off at random, even whilst driving for no reason, which it had never done before. It had previously only ever gone off on starting the car during cold weather. Surely this should have solved this problem then and it shouldnt be going off again during this winter? Also at that time I did ring my local independant garage to book it in to be looked at but they told me anything to do with a factory fitted Vauxhall alarm can only be dealt with by a Vauxhall garage. They gave me the number of a local business that specialises in car alarms to try but I was told the same there.
Expert:  vauxdoc replied 6 years ago.
Sorry but you should of mentioned the siren in the post , my first paragraph is still relevant concerning the vehicle battery drain as this will cause the poor starting and this avenue should be explored.

In my area I know of several independent garages that tackle factory alarm faults , may be your local guys lack confidence , where abouts in the UK are you based ?