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Old 03-11-2010, 06:24 PM   #1
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Hello,
My name is Jay Gesner and I am in Atlanta GA. Just bought a low option 82,000 mile 95 Bonneville SE that has sat for a long time and needs some work. Here is the story; it started March 1st.

I bought it from a guy I used to work with and he had got it from an estate sale of a person smoked heavily and used the cup holder as an ashtray. When he first got it he removed the seats and power washed them, cleaned the doors, dash and rear speaker area and replaced the carpet just to remove the smell. He drove it for a little more than a year until there was a catastrophic A/C compressor failure.

The A/C compressor clutch basically became detached from the compressor pulley and made such a racket that he quit driving it in the summer of 2008. He bought a new Compressor, Drier, Oriface Tube, Flush, Oil and three cans of R-134a but never got them installed and wound up buying a Park Avenue estate sale car. So the Bonneville sat in his garage until he decided to sell it.

Luckily, all the parts came with the Bonneville which amounted to over $300. It also needed a set of tires as it was sitting on the donut when I got there. I also discovered that it had the dreaded "Start and run for a second then die" issue. When I did use the gas to get it to run, it was great but had a check engine light. It pulled well and shifted awesome. I was looking to get this car to replace a 95 L27 LeSabre we have with just over 183,000 miles. The LeSabre is a great car and it has a lot of options, but it'* just not a Pontiac!

So, I did the deal for $650; got it started and drove it 40 miles on dry rotted tires and a bum compressor; staring at a "check engine" light the whole way home, but it ran great and it felt like a Pontiac and not a bowl full of oatmeal Buick!!!

Got it home and replaced the compressor and drier, flushed the lines, put in the oil and oriface tube and got it back together. Then the water pump started to leak. Replace the water pump. (L36 motor-who thought to put the PS pulley OVER one of the WP bolts???)
Then got it back together and the Altenator bearing started to scream. All this time I was fighting the start, run then die issue.

Decieded to get the check engine light looked at before I did anything else. (you know, like emission, register, tag and title and oh, tires too!!) After 6 hours at the mecahnics and $350 later, I have a new PCM and a car that starts fine with no check engine light.

Brakes are kinda mushy and the rear speakers don't work but I still like it better than the Buick. Here are some pictures from the day I bought it.

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So, that the story so far. Glad to see you guys are here and have so much info. I have been reading since I found the site and it great.

Thanks for being here.
Jay
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Old 03-11-2010, 06:28 PM   #2
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Welcome to the forum!! glad you found us and we could help you out!! nice looking ride! got any plans for her?
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Old 03-12-2010, 01:08 AM   #3
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Welcome. Looks like your ride is cosmetically in great shape! We can help you with anything else that may come up down the line.
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Old 03-12-2010, 07:01 AM   #4
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Just curious, what was the deciding factor to change the PCM?
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Old 03-12-2010, 07:07 AM   #5
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Welcome to the forum. You have a nice looking Bonne. Try to post your questions in the appropriate sections and we'll get you fixed in no time. Any plans for mpds or is strictly a commuter?
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Old 03-12-2010, 07:59 AM   #6
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Welcome to the site. You really should have the SES lights scanned. Changing the PCM wont clear those codes. They will just come back.
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Old 03-12-2010, 08:57 AM   #7
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Welcome. Nice looking ride
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Old 03-12-2010, 02:39 PM   #8
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Thanks Guys. They did a bunch of diagnositics on it and the codes were sending them all over the place. Finally they decieded to try the PCM and check engine light when out and it started like a real car.

I do have some plans for it like adding some options from the junkyard and getting some better wheels. Oh, and a way better sound system.

However, I picked it up and drove straight to get the emissions done with the thought of getting tagged today. Well, they got it on the rollers and started the test and it up and died right on the machine. Now it cranks over but will not start. They pushed it out to the parking lot and I called the mechanic that I left only 10 mins before. He came out on a road call with his scanner and found NO codes in the PCM and no spark at the coils.

SO, it'* being towed back to the shop and they will start with a new ignition module. After this, if I have and $$ left, the brakes will be next.

I'll keep you posted.
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Old 03-12-2010, 04:03 PM   #9
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well that just blows just when ya think your good it always gets ya
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Old 03-13-2010, 11:04 PM   #10
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Turns out it was not the ignition module. It was the remanufactered PCM. A second Computer fixed the problem. Well, sort of.

The mechanic put the new PCM in and ran it for about an hour. Then for the next three hours would periodically start it. Started each time and ran fine except, it set an Oxygen sensor code. He cleared it and waited for it to come back on but it didn't. So I picked it up and again went straight to the inspection station. While waiting for them to do the test, the check engine light came on again. Being it was a 95, the light would not matter to the inspector so I let him do the test. AND IT PASSED, Thank God! I can get a tag now.

The test he did was the one where you just rev the motor in park, not run it on the dyno. When I asked, he said that my car was one of the few in 1995 that had traction control that cannot be disabled??? (no disable button) I was a state inspector for three years while I was in college and I don't remember having issues with Bonnevilles but, maybe my memory is slipping. Either way, I'm one more step to legal and reliable.

I will give it an O2 sensor tomorrow just to see if the light goes out. If it comes back on, it'* electrical tape over the light time!!!!

For sure it was not an AC Delco PCM. I'm not sure what brand it is but I know the place was giving him a hard time about returning it. I have to go back up there to help drop off my brother-in-law'* truck so I will ask.

In other news, I reassembled the spare tire and jack, and then tackled the rear speakers. After pulling the radio, checking each plug for speaker outputs, it turns out both the rear ones were completely blown and dead as a door nail. Found an old set of 6X9s from another defunct project and wired them in with a little grinding on the speaker brackets. Now I have tunes from all 4 speakers but it all sound like crap.
Next is:
Tires (because they are dry rotted and ití* completely unsafe!)
Brakes (because there are NONE and ití* completely unsafe!)
Stereo (because it sucks and it will cause road rage.)
Electric seats (because I cannot get comfortable without tilting the seat)
A/C recharge (because I live in HOTlanta and June is just around the corner)

Will keep you posted.
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