coolant elbow - GM Forum - Buick, Cadillac, Chev, Olds, GMC & Pontiac chat


1992-1999 Series I L27 (1992-1994 SE,SLE, SSE) & Series II L36 (1995-1999 SE, SSE, SLE) and common problems for the Series I and II L67 (all supercharged models 92-99) Including Olds 88's, Olds LSS's and Buick Lesabres Please use General Chat for non-mechanical issues, and Performance and Brainstorming for improvements.

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Old 07-27-2004, 10:42 PM   #1
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Default coolant elbow

Today I went looking for the coolant elbow that goes from the lower intake manifold to the tensioner bracket.Mine is presently fine but I'm looking for a METAL one.My local dealer only carries plastic and said that they go thru alot of them . I've seen reference to a metal replacement on this board but that'* about it.A search didn't help. A few local parts stores don't carry one.Anybody got a part number ,approximate cost and where to buy information.Any help is appreciated.Thanks. On a slightly different subject,the parts guy said that they go thru alot of upper intake manifolds and gaskets.When I asked him about lower intake gaskets he said they don't find that many failed ones but just replace them as part of the upper intake failure fix.Seems hard to believe that the Buicks don't have the amount of lower gasket failures that the Pontiacs do.Anyways that'* what he said.
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Old 07-28-2004, 02:38 AM   #2
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Default Metal fitting

Hi Helikon,
Are you refering to the upper bypass fitting that threads into the lower intake? I don't have a part number but I was able to obtain a metal one from my local Autozone Store that they had in a box under the counter, it was made in china and I have had mine in for about 3 months with no signs of any problems as of yet. Mine was for a 94 SE.
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Old 07-28-2004, 03:20 AM   #3
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i bought my replacement at autozone too. The part wasn't even a dollar!

as for the intake, they probably go bad less often in them because they're typically driven much easier than Pontiacs are.
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Old 07-28-2004, 09:59 AM   #4
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Default metal elbow

I was looking for a metal one myself.
I'll check out auto zone to see if they carry one for a 96.
Thanks
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Old 07-28-2004, 10:30 AM   #5
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sorry, but why even go metal? the plastic ones hold up just fine and were made for that specific application...?

anyhew, on my buick (which isn't driven hard), the upper was more than fine - it was near perfect - but the lowers were horrible.

i think it has more to do with people just not doing them... out of sight, out of mind. you do the upper because you might notice a little loss of coolant, and everyone instantly tells you that its the upper intake. unfortunately, most all of the lowers are in just as bad or worse shape :(
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Old 07-28-2004, 02:07 PM   #6
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[quote="mkaake"]sorry, but why even go metal? the plastic ones hold up just fine and were made for that specific application...?
[/quote
Because the plastic ones crack over time. If they do it while you're driving you lose all of your coolant and BAM you're stranded.
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Old 07-28-2004, 11:16 PM   #7
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I got a metal one from Car Quest.
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Old 07-28-2004, 11:21 PM   #8
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Default Re: coolant elbow

Quote:
Originally Posted by helikon
Today I went looking for the coolant elbow that goes from the lower intake manifold to the tensioner bracket.Mine is presently fine but I'm looking for a METAL one.My local dealer only carries plastic and said that they go thru alot of them . I've seen reference to a metal replacement on this board but that'* about it.A search didn't help. A few local parts stores don't carry one.Anybody got a part number ,approximate cost and where to buy information.Any help is appreciated.Thanks. On a slightly different subject,the parts guy said that they go thru alot of upper intake manifolds and gaskets.When I asked him about lower intake gaskets he said they don't find that many failed ones but just replace them as part of the upper intake failure fix.Seems hard to believe that the Buicks don't have the amount of lower gasket failures that the Pontiacs do.Anyways that'* what he said.
92-94 don't have upper intake problems. Only 95-99. Buicks have EXACTLY the same drivetrain and problems as the Pontiacs. In fact, our Pontiacs have BUICK engines. All 3800'* in all makes (Buick, Olds, Pontiac, Chevy) are susceptible to exactly the same failures at the same rates. No difference whatsoever.
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Old 07-28-2004, 11:41 PM   #9
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Thanks guys, I'll check Autozone or Carquest.I don't give Autozone much business and after them telling me 4 months ago that they don't even list motor /trans mounts for my car I wouldn't have expected them to have this elbow.-------------------------------Willwren, I know what your'e saying about the shared drivetrain components,That'* why I thought it sounded so strange.Pondering this further I thought it might be due to positive pressures in the intake manifolds(boost) in the supercharged models and the pressure impulses created when an intake valve slams shut that might hammer on the the lower intake gaskets.Buuut, then there'* alot of NA gasket failures so like you say it'* a common problem.
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Old 07-28-2004, 11:44 PM   #10
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Intake manifold failures aren't that common. Not any more common than any other car, in my opinion.

I helped Jseabert tear down his 93SSE, and his lower intake gaskets looked good enough to re-install after 188,000 miles.

Our engines were also designed to withstand much higher boost levels than they do. Remember that our roots go back to the 3.8 GN Turbo
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