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Discussion Starter #1
Rear panel on sunroof suddenly shattered while driving on the hwy near Banff, AB enroute to the coast. Sunroof closed, divided hwy, no vehicles in front within at least a couple hundred yards so wasn't a stone or any debris kicked up high and coming down on it. Tempered glass and the thing basically exploded leaving a double fisted size hole in the shattered panel. Good thing the headliner shade was closed as well or glass would have been all over the place. Anyone else have their sunroof spontaneously shatter?
 

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Unfortunately this is quite common with sunroof. More common than many know.

Ensure you tell the dealer it is a defect and there was no debris, stone etc and it should be covered. You can also tell based on how the break occurred and how it looks afterwards. If the glass at the edges of where it broke is curved up at all normally that means it was a defect within the tempered glass.

It is not something specific to Jeep and has been known to occur to almost all auto manufacturers.
 

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Spoke with dealer on the phone to get the panel ordered and the process going and they indicated $850+ for panel and install and then some additional labour to pull the headliner to remove any glass up in there. Sounds good to me I says "since it should be covered under warranty anyways". To which he replies that it isnt because "something must have hit it". Sigh. Really?? I am going over there directly later today to work this out.
 

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Do not let them tell you something must have hit it. Not sure if you can examine the area, but you should be able to tell by how it was damaged.

Also, sunroofs are pretty much only damaged if something drops directly onto them, or in a break-in scenario.

Just tell them you were no where near any falling rocks or debris and no other vehicles around. Look on line regarding exploding sun roofs, it is somewhat common and the dealer should support you with that claim.
 

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Discussion Starter #6


For sure. Thanks for that homac.
You can see in the picture the glass all angled up around the edges the hole before we covered it all up with cardboard, plastic and duct tape.
 

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Tell them to contact Chrysler and that it simply was not an impact break. The glass would all be pointed down into the car not up. I would be surprised if FCA declines the claim as they know this happens, rarely, but it does happen.

The whole pane of glass moves and is pushed into place to create a tight seal. If something is not right it will burst/shatter and that looks different from a rock or break-in. Tempered glass as a safety feature shatters differently than your windscreen does. If there is a flaw in the glass it can break upon closing your door, change in air pressure, change in temperature etc.

Let us know how it goes, any good dealer should get right behind you and ensure the warranty claim is paid. Go on line and you will find a ton of these occurrences.
 

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This exact same problem happened to us in our 2014 Cherokee Limited last week. I've had nothing but problems getting my local jeep dealership to support my warranty claim. I've also called Chrysler multiple times and they say that they stand by their dealerships decisions. I'll be sharing this thread with the dealership as well as the pictures of the upward pointing glass that I took and hopefully they will be swayed to do the right thing, as your dealership finally did. We also had the headliner shade closed when our sunroof exploded - perhaps the heat trapped up there has something to do with this issue on the Cherokees? I've also found a 2011 article from ABC news in San Francisco about a BMW owner with the same problem that quotes a UC Berkeley professor debunking the myth that a rock can break a sunroof while a car is traveling at highway speeds - the rock would have to be 10-15 ft in the air and traveling at a speed of 70-80 MPH to break a sunroof - well outside the realm of possibility. http://abc7news.com/archive/8026317/
 

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Discussion Starter #12
That looks exactly like what happened...same spot in the rear panel with a hole just like it. Bummer!

FYI dropped off the TH this morning and the service mgr informed me that the western warranty rep had initially declined my claim. He showed me the email reply in his computer where the rep said he had never had a single one of these that wasnt due to impact. The service guy then forwarded the rep the picture I sent him of the panel glass with some details indicating there was no evidence at all of an impact. Warranty rep then changed his tune and approved the claim after actually seeing the way the panel broke.
 

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Hopefully the Chrysler Eastern service rep here in New York will change his tune as well! I do appreciate you posting, as it's good to know that this is not an isolated incident. Makes my job of arguing with Chrysler a lot easier. Unfortunately, it seems like this is a real defect that we're dealing with that could affect many more Jeep Cherokee owners in the future.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
What is quite telling is the fact that the warranty rep first dismissed the claim offhand without even asking for pictures or additional info. How does he KNOW it was due to impact if he hasn't seen pictures or asking if a rock was found in the headliner. After reading the UC Berkley guys assessment of what it takes to break a sunroof (thanks mkocan! http://abc7news.com/archive/8026317/ ) all of these claims should be considered defects until it can be PROVEN to be by impact, not the other way around.
 

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Went in and spoke with the service mgr directly and he agreed it did not look like an impact break so would put in a warrantly claim and "see what happens". New glass glass goes in tomorrow.
Okay, FCA is going to do the right thing.. My latest TH does not have the sun roof and I am glad. My latitude that I received a buy back on it had the sun roof and I never opened it but one time when I bought the vehicle to make sure it worked. I know a lot of people love them, but I personally just don't care for them and saved me 1500 dollars more or less for not having it. I had them before just because i couldn't find one without it. Anyhow, I am happy for you that FCA is replacing yours.
 

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this is mortifying. *knocks on wood* glad everyone is okay and not having to pay for repair
 

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That would scare the living daylights out of me to hear that glass shatter above my head at highway speed...I've never really felt the need for a sunroof, always saw it as another point of failure for water to get in so never bothered..Happy that everyone's managing to get them replaced under warranty, that'd be terrible.
 

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Just happened to me on my 2015 jeep grand cherokee limited,only had the vehicle for 35 days .I was riding on I75 in GA on 1-11-16.All I heard was a BIG BOOM OVER TOP OF MY HEAD,the dealership keeps trying to have me make an insurance claim with my insurance company.But I told them I'm totally against that,because thats a defect,so my vehicle is at the dealer now so chrysler can do their investigation as to how this could have happened.
 

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Me too

What is quite telling is the fact that the warranty rep first dismissed the claim offhand without even asking for pictures or additional info. How does he KNOW it was due to impact if he hasn't seen pictures or asking if a rock was found in the headliner. After reading the UC Berkley guys assessment of what it takes to break a sunroof (thanks mkocan! http://abc7news.com/archive/8026317/ ) all of these claims should be considered defects until it can be PROVEN to be by impact, not the other way around.
Hi,

Same happened to me on my cherokee but on the front panel. I initially got the same answer from dealer... Something must have hit it. They actually presented me with a 1500$ + tx bill right there. I had to kick and scream to get access to the director's office. I told them to submit a warranty request. Negotiation with dealer took about 45 min just for them to submit the request. It took about 1h for chrysler to approve the work under warranty :)

Did you get any issues with new panel? mine made noises when the car structure was stressed. Any bum in the road or entering the driveway would be enough. I went to another dealer and the tech told me right away something was wrong with the sunroof rack which is pretty much the whole structure aside from the window panels. They replaced it and things are much better now.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
No problem at all with the replacement piece. Good to hear you had it taken care of!

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