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New Aurora Owner - 1999

donpeacockdonpeacock Posts: 2
edited March 15 in Oldsmobile
Hi all,

I recently purchased a '99 Aurora for my daughter (16th birthday). It has 91k on it and runs great. I just finished changing the serpentine belt (not the easiest I've ever done).

I suspect the wires and plugs are original. I noticed slight dark spots under the wires (where they laid) and figure I should change them and the plugs. Recommendations?

I'm putting Michelin 235/60/HR16 Primacy tires on it in the morning.

It isn't in 100% perfect shape, some of the air vents flop around and the cup holder is broken, other than that, it's in great shape inside and out. (where is the best place to pick up these types of odds and ends? Is there an easy fix for the floppy air vents?)

Anything that I "must know", now that I've bought it?

The original tranny was just changed and the AC compressor is new.

Thanks,
Don

Comments

  • pscheidpscheid Posts: 190
    Hi Don,

    I get my odds and ends from a local Cadillac dealer. They have the complete parts list and get the stuff reasonably cheap in 2 business days.

    I have a floppy air vent that is mounted on the center console feeding the rear seat. Dog crushed it but I have not gotten around to replacing it because the dog would just crush the new one.....it still throws the a/c and heat back there.

    I also replaced the balance/fader and the bass/treble nobs on the factory Delco sound system because the originals were't snug any more, making manual adjustments difficult.

    You may want to use this forum heavily, especially on the search function as anything you have an issue with either has been covered already or someone knowledgeable may respond.

    I posted earlier today on my experiences over 95,000 miles on my 98 Aurora with the Autobahn package, the Aurora thread I believe. I have a few more miles on mine but have done zero ignition work. Since the car is running super and the mileage hasn't dropped off, I am not going to fix something that is not broken.....yet. However, most experts on this Forum seem to be in agreement: use only the factory GM parts on ignition maintenace.

    I replaced the a/c compressor at 82K in 3/07. Trans is original with the scheduled maintenance. So it looks like you ducked two of the largest repairs. Good for you.

    If you have not replaced the tires yet, I am currently riding on a set of Yokohama Avid V4-S, from NTB at about $88 per tire, V rated and if I recall correctly a 60,000 mile warranty. Quiet, not harsh riding, decent turn in, and pretty good in the rain and snow. When you get the tires, be aware that the Aurora is not the simplest of cars to get balanced correctly, and this topic is covered extensively in this Forum. Solution: find a place with a Hunter Force balancer, it does the trick if there are no other issues.

    Battery is under the reat seat. I got about 10 years and 80,000 miles out of mine. They are not cheap but have over 800CCA and last because they are not exposed to the elements. I think I paid about $150 for an Atlas/Interstate.

    You did not any suspension work previously done: struts, the automatic air shocks, or suspension work. Mine is all original, so I am due.

    I recommend you use your daughter's Aurora at least one day a week to make sure nothing is amiss. ;)

    Jack
  • Jack,

    Thanks for the note. I've learned a lot from this forum already and have gotten pretty familiar with the search mechanism. As far as the suspension work, before I bought the car, I had it inspected and the replaced 3-4 parts (tie rod, CV boot type stuff) so that is all really good. It has a very slight brake vibration that the shop says is coming from a rear rotor, they recommended using it for the summer and replacing it before the bad weather. There is still a lot of life, but it chatters just a bit.

    I've been driving it every day for the last couple weeks, just to make sure it is ready to roll for my daughter. Your advice is good, to drive it myself once a week, just to make sure everything is still good. I do that with my wifes truck every month or so, for the same reason.

    I noticed the low beams were a bit weak, so replaced them with the brightest Philips halogens (I think Krystal brite or something like that) I could find. It really made a difference. Getting the bulbs in and out was a bit of a Chinese finger puzzle, but once I figured it out, no problem.

    I already replaced the tires (Michelin Primacy) and they are great. We used the car this weekend (750 miles) with 3 adults and a bunch of stuff in the trunk, we got 25 MPG. It was a mix of highway (mostly) and stop and go, so we are pleased with this cars efficiency.

    Thanks for the info on the Battery and the ignition.

    Thanks for the reply and have a great day,

    Don
  • pscheidpscheid Posts: 190
    Don,

    Re the rotor, I've had the same brake vibration symptom occur after quite a few miles on the brakes and was told that one rear calipers had seen better days, wasn't releasing the pads off the rotor completely when the car was brought in, but responded to a simple lubrication. Was told to come back in 5000 miles to make sure the new rotors didn't get fried by the caliper issue. Passed that milestone long ago, no further issue. I have my mechanic take a look at every oil change which he doesn't mind since my donations to his kid's college fund have been noteworthy and we have a 15 year relationship. I have to keep reminding myself that older cars will have quirks that, unless one is anal retentive, are better left tolerated until they can be resolved during a more extensive repair so the labor is already a sunk cost.

    Re the low beams. Aurora's better than most of the Chryslers I have owned, not as good as the other GMs and one Ford product (Sable), and cannot hold a candle to my wife's Infinity G35 Coupe. The aim is dead on, and the lenses are clean, unpitted. On the other hand, the Aurora some of the best high beams I've had on cars. Odly, I have never had to replace any of the headlamps despite the daytime running lights perpetually on. Lo beam coverage and intensity is particularly important here in MA. where it seems they have no money to maintain/repaint the lines on the road; and driving the highways at night in the rain or light snow with 57 year old eyes becomes an adventure in travel. My 29 year old says it's the lines, not my eyes.

    Fuel economy. I'm carrying 35 psi in the tires, not the recommended 31. Fresh fuel and air filters. Original ignition at 95,000 miles. Burning 87 octane for the last 14K miles (gas prices) or so since about the first of the year (yup, and no issues nor a drop in fuel ecenomy). The mileage you describe with passengers and luggage is about right with cruise and/or a light foot, and driving the lights. I routinely get 27-28 mpg+ pure highway (cruise control) with a passenger and full luggage (wife's necessities, you know, i.e., a different pair of shoes for each day and occasion). More recently 24.5 on a 65 mph trip with 3 passengers (800 pounds) and too much luggage (175 pounds, some in the back seat! Yes, I weighed the luggage.). City mileage.....another story, about 18-20 pure city including stop and go and rush hour traffic included. Mixed driving has come in at 21-24 mpg. Has always been that way.

    Suspension. I'm due for air adjustable rear shocks (leaking but still functioning properly for the time being) and have not gotten the mechanics "Your ready for some front end work" lecture, The car is still tracking and riding properly, and the tire wear is dead even. I'll get the shocks done this summer and, if necessary, some front end work.

    Owners satisfaction. While buying (her....I drive the hand-me-downs) a new car is something my wife has been after me to do for the past two years, I love the car. It has been exceedingly functional, comfortable, and fun to drive, has been dependable with maintenance and repairs I have come to expect from American manufacturers. The savings: no financing expenses (car long since paid off), low depreciation expense, low insurance rates, low excise taxes. These savings outweigh the M/E expenses. The car still gets admiring glances and questions from others and can hit 140 mph (Autobahn option). And I don't have to have an ulcer every time I have to park the car at the mall or supermarket.

    Seriously, it will be a sad day when I am forced to retire the car and inherit my wife's Infinity G35 Coupe.

    Your daughter may not appreciate all this drivel, but.......

    Jack
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