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Old 10-14-2005, 02:28 PM   #11
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I had a 92 Deville - 4.8 ltr (I think)....I bought it in '99 with 95k miles....drove it until 2003 and 195k miles... I had a small oil leak for the last 30k miles but that was it.... head gaskets were fine...replaced everything else (of course) - starter, alternator, water pump (expected items). Lost only 1/4 quart between oil changes....
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Old 10-14-2005, 02:35 PM   #12
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4.5 is a all aluminion motor
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Old 10-14-2005, 02:50 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GAMEOVER
4.5 is a all aluminion motor
First there was the 4.1<---- Junk Junk Junk Junk...

The 4.5 was an improved and updated version... I have seen these go well beyond 200,000 miles... After that was the 4.9... These are iffy at best... I have seen them go through oil like mad.... 500 miles and one quart down, on a very well cared for car... I hyave seen then develop rod knock, piston slapp, bad wrist pin.... The list goes on and on...

Most of the issues I have seen were cause in some way by the owner... These Alluminum Block / Cast iron head 4.5 and 4.9'* could not tollerate being overheated, overheat it and its done... I saw one owner kill 2 4.5'* this way... Ran them too hot and killed the head gaskets...

If the 4.5 or 4.9 is a high milage motor I'd steer way clear of that car... These cars also had the tendancy of killing off the THM440-T4( Everything internally burned up ) and just wearing out the 4T60-E( attached to the 4.9 )...

I will agree that tghe Northstar which saw its first year on 92 is a good engine, mecanicly friendly may be another story altogether... I have also seen these at 200,000 miles... I actually like the 4.6N*, but I'll hang onto my 3800

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Old 10-14-2005, 02:57 PM   #14
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How easy are the Northstars to work on? ...in comparison to the 3800?
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Old 10-14-2005, 03:01 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jr's3800
Quote:
Originally Posted by GAMEOVER
4.5 is a all aluminion motor
Most of the issues I have seen were cause in some way by the owner... These Aluminum Block / Cast iron head 4.5 and 4.9'* could not tollerate being overheated, overheat it and its done... I saw one owner kill 2 4.5'* this way... Ran them too hot and killed the head gaskets...
About a year ago I bought a 1989 deville off a guy, he was asking $600, all I had was $200, I tried, and the car came home with me. "All" it had was a blown head gasket. The 4.5 v8 has an aluminum block, iron heads. The guy overheated the motor so bad it warped the block, not the heads. So the car sits, one day I will go put a junkyard motor in it, but until then it is a nice storage area for all my fishing gear.
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Old 10-15-2005, 10:31 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chasesmith
Quote:
Originally Posted by jr's3800
Quote:
Originally Posted by GAMEOVER
4.5 is a all aluminion motor
Most of the issues I have seen were cause in some way by the owner... These Aluminum Block / Cast iron head 4.5 and 4.9'* could not tollerate being overheated, overheat it and its done... I saw one owner kill 2 4.5'* this way... Ran them too hot and killed the head gaskets...
About a year ago I bought a 1989 deville off a guy, he was asking $600, all I had was $200, I tried, and the car came home with me. "All" it had was a blown head gasket. The 4.5 v8 has an aluminum block, iron heads. The guy overheated the motor so bad it warped the block, not the heads. So the car sits, one day I will go put a junkyard motor in it, but until then it is a nice storage area for all my fishing gear.
That 4.5 is and was a good motor... But just like you described they do not tollerate heat.... when I used to hang out with my shadetree buddy more( Busy these days, Too tired ) we used to use the 4.5 to replace the 4.1'*.... There are a lot of junked 4.1'*, they are everywhere... But the 4.5 is hard to comeby down here as thats what everyone uses to replace a blown 4.1...

They seemed to have a strong low end torque curve.... And most were attached to the 2.97 Ratio trans... No a bad motor... Untill it gets too hot....lol

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Old 10-15-2005, 01:03 PM   #17
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A question I can answer! Yes... Okay here are my thoughts the 85-88 where the first major remake on the G-body Devilles. Reliabilty lacked, motors were a 4.1L DFI V8 in 85,86,87 and in 88 the much more powerful 4.5L came to being. The 89 Deville/Fleetwood was freshend with extierior panels to give it a more graceful look. The 4.5L DFI'* and 4.1'* are known for blowing head gaskets.The 4.5 was upped to 180 for 1990, and the 4.9 was sold in all 91-93 Devilles/Fleetwoods/Sixty Specials... The 4.9 (300ci.) OHV V8 was rated at 200hp and 275lbft. of torque, and yes they had 4T60'*. Some side notes a very special/rare expensive Fleetwood Sixty Special was introduced in 89 and sold until 92 when in 93 the name was simply changed to Sixty Special. The interior was designed by Georgeti Guirgouri or what ever his name was. The seats are posh, and a loaded Sixty Speical in 93 came to around 39 grand! And the Deville Touring Sedan had a performance axle ratio, speed sensetaive steering, and a speical interior/trim and stylish 16inch alloy polished wheels. Those are just some side notes on the special 89 and up Cad'*. Keep in mind finding a Touring Sedan or Sixty Special in good shape is like finding a 88-91 SSE! Those are good cars, load levelers, cat conveters, fuel injectors, tearing door panels are common problems, and with the 4.5L and 4.1L head gaskets blow so be warned! I loved my 92 Deville when I had it for 2 yrs... And my dad/mom had it for 11 before me and my dad claimed that car would go well over 90.... I know its true with a 2.73:1 one axle ratio (fuel economy) and the 4.9 doesn't take kindly to regular grade fuel. The 4.5 I beleive if I remember correctly tolrates it. And you can easily find them with under 100K old people driven, is what I would go with! Thats about all I have... Someday if see a Sixty Special or Touring Sedan I may jump on it just like the 'right' 88-91 Bonn SSE! Tell your friend good luck and be sure to pass this along to him, I hope it helped! Go with a 91-93 with the 4.9 reliable cars, and good road crusiers and gas hogs... Compared to my Impala oh and I loved the limo backseat! Flowmaster mufflers and no cat'* sound really good on the 4.9'* too!
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Old 10-16-2005, 01:37 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vital49
How easy are the Northstars to work on? ...in comparison to the 3800?
Like night and day. I preffer the Bonneville simply because its easy to fix. The Northstar'* engine compartments are typically packed like crazy. You cant fit your hand around the engine ANYWHERE, which is part of the reason why ive been hesitant to find and replace the two O2 sensors.

Couple of weeks ago the water pump went out. Had to get a special tool you can rent which was specifically for the Northstar to get the old pump out and the new one in, and it took a whole day because we had to take out the airbox and move around the hoses and had a tight space to work in because the radiator was close.

BUT the newer Northstars (96+) are very reliable and will last you at least a quarter million miles. They do not "burn" oil, in fact it uses it because of more aggressive oiling in the cylinders which also means less wear. They have done a few teardowns on 200,000 mile Northstars and found that the cylinder and pistons barely had any wear. In fact were it not for the tight space id have to say the Northstar is one of the best engines GM has put out.

Quote:
It is not unusual for a Northstar to use more oil than some other engines. It is a high performance engine and has to allow a little more oil to the top rings for lube as as well as down the 32 valve guides.

Design intent for oil consumption would put the engine at about 4000 miles per quart consumption but due to the variables in production parameters there are engines that will use 1 quart per 1000-1500 miles.... perfectly normal and acceptable... but more oil consumption than "intended". Nothing will be wrong with the engine but the continuous oil adds are aggravating. If this is the case then understand that the engine is probably going to run a long long time like that as the cylinder walls , rings, valve guides, etc. like all that oil that you are putting in and the continuous oil adds fortify the used oil in the sump and replenish the additive package in the oil that is slowly depleted under normal usage.

Comparing the 4.9 to the Northstar is an apples to oranges deal. The 4.9 is an excellent engine for it'* purpose but does not offer nearly the performance, durability, fuel economy and emission control capability of the Northstar. The Northstar is a high output engine and likes to be "used".

The best way to minimize oil consumption in a Northstar is to keep the sump filled slightly low (many are continuously overfilled) by only checking the oil level when hot and only filling the sump with 7 quarts of oil (7.5 with a dry filter at a change.) A typical 8 quart fill at a change is "required" to put the oil level on the full mark when cold but is actually overfilling the crankcase promoting oil consumption.

Use conventional mineral oil (synthetic is not required at all) as it tends to provide better oil consumption.

An last, but not least, air the engine out frequently. It likes to be used and red-line upshifts at WOT help promote clean combustion chambers, exercise the piston rings to keep them free of carbon buildup and keep them mobile and to ensure the engine is broken in and maximum sealing is obtained. The Northstar does not like to be babied around. It likes to be run hard frequently with a WOT blast in merging or whatever.... Even engines reported to use 1 quart per 1500 miles tend to improve to 2500 miles per quart or better when subjected to a regular schedule of use and "abuse"...
Lots more info on the Northstar here:
http://cadillacforums.com/cadillac-tech.html
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Old 10-16-2005, 09:09 PM   #19
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Thanks for the oodles of information guys, I have forwarded all to my friend so he can make an informed decision. You guys are the best!

I'll let you know if he has any more questions!
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