New member with 97 SE seeking repair opinions - Page 3 - 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 02-14-2007, 11:05 PM   #21
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One more thought guys: If the car is going to sit for a little while, how is the engine'* integrity?
Could any residual coolant in the cylinders cause things to rust, and is that a concern?
Should the oil be changed to eliminate the likelihood of coolant damaging the bearings? It worries me if the car is unable to start right now, but what do you all think?
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Old 02-15-2007, 12:32 AM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dillcc
One more thought guys: If the car is going to sit for a little while, how is the engine'* integrity?
Could any residual coolant in the cylinders cause things to rust, and is that a concern?
Should the oil be changed to eliminate the likelihood of coolant damaging the bearings? It worries me if the car is unable to start right now, but what do you all think?
Not likely a problem, but here'* what you could do to stabilize the engine. Drain the coolant and the oil. Change the oil filter for a cheap one. Fill the crankcase with WalMart 5w30. Pull the spark plugs and turn the engine over a few times by hand to expel any large accumulations of coolant from cylinders. Run starter til oil pressure comes up. Gets rid of coolant, and provides a preliminary flush of coolant from the cylinders and crankcase.
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Old 02-15-2007, 06:29 PM   #23
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Default K.I.*.* (Keep it simple...)

Guys! UIM/LIM and all these other post are great but let'* not overlook the obvious. This car needs proper voltage to run the onboard computer. My 97' SSE had very similar symptoms (running rough, etc.) and it was the battery. Swap a known good battery as a test and see what happens. You might be surprised when the onboard computer gets "happy" with the proper voltages!
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Old 02-15-2007, 06:47 PM   #24
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Default Re: K.I.*.* (Keep it simple...)

Quote:
Originally Posted by brochaz
Guys! UIM/LIM and all these other post are great but let'* not overlook the obvious. This car needs proper voltage to run the onboard computer. My 97' SSE had very similar symptoms (running rough, etc.) and it was the battery. Swap a known good battery as a test and see what happens. You might be surprised when the onboard computer gets "happy" with the proper voltages!
From the previous page:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Potsy395
Another Update: I checked the coolant level in the radiator on Saturday and the fluid level was not visible. It took only an ounce or two to bring it back up to the top though. I did not check the plugs myself for coolant fouling, but I did take the car to a Pontiac dealer on Saturday to see if someone could perform diagnostics for me, but no mechanic was on duty, only young kids who do oil changes. When I tried to leave, the car would not start, so I ended up leaving it there for them to check out today.

I got a call this morning telling me I have an internal coolant leak, plus external leak (water pump apparently). They said this is causing the plugs to foul and the car to start/run rough. For parts and labor to install a new UIM and LIM, thermostat, water pump, and plugs, they quoted $1,760 plus tax!
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Old 02-15-2007, 09:39 PM   #25
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Default Re: K.I.*.* (Keep it simple...)

It sounds like they have it figured out but I'd sure want to do a battery swap before I'd spend that kind of cash and then to find out it was an $85 battery.

Thanks for your attention on this Bill - you rock! I'm a big fan of your wealth of knowledge. I have used your posts and replys on numerous occasions and have found them to be 100% A+. I'd like to see your other weekend ride one day. :o

Quote:
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brochaz
Guys! UIM/LIM and all these other post are great but let'* not overlook the obvious. This car needs proper voltage to run the onboard computer. My 97' SSE had very similar symptoms (running rough, etc.) and it was the battery. Swap a known good battery as a test and see what happens. You might be surprised when the onboard computer gets "happy" with the proper voltages!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Potsy395
Another Update: I checked the coolant level in the radiator on Saturday and the fluid level was not visible. It took only an ounce or two to bring it back up to the top though. I did not check the plugs myself for coolant fouling, but I did take the car to a Pontiac dealer on Saturday to see if someone could perform diagnostics for me, but no mechanic was on duty, only young kids who do oil changes. When I tried to leave, the car would not start, so I ended up leaving it there for them to check out today.

I got a call this morning telling me I have an internal coolant leak, plus external leak (water pump apparently). They said this is causing the plugs to foul and the car to start/run rough. For parts and labor to install a new UIM and LIM, thermostat, water pump, and plugs, they quoted $1,760 plus tax!
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Old 02-15-2007, 10:00 PM   #26
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The LIM & UIM is very do-able at any skill level. Just keep track of what goes where. I labelled everything and took pictures to help my bad memory. I did this a little over a year ago all by myself with just a $14 1/4" Walmart (stanley) deepwell socket set and a $60 (on sale from $80) Craftsman torque wrench.

Your first time doing this will take a bit longer, maybe 5-6 hours, when you're done you'll be pretty sure if you had to do it again that you could do it in 2.
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Old 02-15-2007, 10:12 PM   #27
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The torque wrench I use for this work also came from Sears, but it is a smaller 3/8" drive deflecting beam type wrench. I think I paid $25 for it. It does just fine for the UIM/LIM work. http://www.sears.com/sr/javasr/produ...id=00944690000
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Old 02-22-2007, 10:04 PM   #28
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Final chapter: After considerable debate, we decided to part company with our 97 Bonneville SE with 155K miles, and we sold the car today to a local auto parts business. I could not justify trying to sell it to someone else knowing the issues it had, and the amount we got from them was better than a donation and tax deduction. The main thing they wanted was the front and rear bump assemblies!

We seriously considered taking up offers from a couple of you to help replace the UIM/LIM and water pump, but the transmission issue scared us too much. A third mechanic friend whom I spoke with agreed with the other two mechanics that it was probably time to move on.

Based on your posts, I'm guessing the leaking coolant from the UIM/LIM was the cause of the engine running rough, and why it was hard to re-start after it warmed up and the coolant fouled the plugs. When cold, it started normally (the battery was fine after I recharged it). I felt much better about our decision to sell when I drove the car there to be sold today and experienced substantial tranny bucking going up hills/inclines - consistent with past performance, and performance a mechanic said was definitely transmission related.

I know some of you are probably disappointed that we did not attempt to fix the UIM/LIM to see if that would take care of the problems before making our final decision, but I just could not justify even doing that much.

It was a good car while it lasted - I'm sad, but overall happy with our experience with the car - 10 years from cradle to grave. Time to look for a replacement of some sort for our sons for the summer.

I really really appreciate everyone'* ideas, suggestions, and offers to help. You're a class bunch. Keep posting to help other neophytes like me. Thanks again.
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Old 02-22-2007, 10:31 PM   #29
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sorry to hear that, but at least you're happy and your decisions were justified...oh well, go packers
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