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Pontiac Grand Am



  • I agree with burdawg - sounds like you have more than a valve stem leak. When mine lost pressure like that I found I had a screw in the tread. Does the SE model have a low tire pressure indicator light like the GT does?

    As far as the tire noise, I'm pretty sure that it is only the GT low-profile tires that have the problem.
  • Hi. I have a 1996 Grand Am SE with the 2.4/4-cyl engine approaching 100,000 miles. I bought the car GM Certified in May of 1999 with 30,000 miles. Here are the problems I have had: water pump (replaced under warranty), alternator (rep. under warranty), new control arm (bushing problem, causing steering wheel to pulse when braking). That is it. I keep my car Pontiac dealer maintained with the same mechanic and have had the oil changed every 3,000. I still have 1.5 years left in college and need this car to last (can even think about another payment). Should I follow just the manual's 100K recommended service, or something else? I am also going to ask the mechanic. I have been very impressed with the 2.4 engine in my car since I have heard a lot of horror stories from other people about them. It still has great pick-up for a 4-cyl engine and gets great gas mileage.
  • midlife,
    My husband and I are both engineers and we're scratching our heads trying to figure out how the tire could rub on the wheel (we're not car experts). Could you share the details of the problem with us if you know them? And, if the tire is rubbing in one spot (hence, once per revolution), then wouldn't that create a weak spot on the tire and therefore the potential for a serious problem?

    I need to take the car in for an oil change and to have the rotors machined (they said they'll machine, but not replace them under warranty), so I'll have to add the tire noise to the list. AGH!!! I absolutely love my GT but I'm feeling awfully disappointed right now. No car is perfect, but... My SmartBuy is up in December. My neighbor runs a Chevy dealership and I am quite fond of the TrailBlazers he brings home everyday...but I'm sure they have their own share of problems as well.

    Anyway, if you (or anyone) could elaborate on the tire noise, I'd greatly appreciate it!
  • I am also an engineer, but not a car expert. The problem was explained to me as something to do with the bead of the tire, not the tire structure itself. I think of it sort of like a shoe that squeaks when you walk on a wet floor. There is something about the shape of the tire where it contacts the wheel that causes a rubbing type noise once per tire revolution. It's almost like listening to a steam locomotive chugging at real slow speed. Chug, chug, chug, rub, rub, rub.....

    The dealer twice tried to lubricate the wheels to eliminate the rubbing sound. Once with baby powder (I'm not kidding) and then with some kind of clear coat finish. They gobbed the clear coat on and I spent an hour trying to clean the excess off of my rims! Neither was a permanent solution to the problem, as the noise reestablished itself soon after. And when I rotated my tires recently, the noise just moved from one part of the car to another, and seemed to be louder than ever!
  • midlifecrisis...
    Unfortunately no, the SE model does not have the low tire pressure indicator. That is something that would be nice to have though!
    I'm taking my car in to get it inspected by the end of the month, I'll have them check the tire again to see if they find a leak.
  • joe3891joe3891 Posts: 759
    Just to give you a clue that water pump replace would have cost you $800 out of warranty,and its going to fail again.
  • For anyone considering a fun car I still highly recommend the GT1. Very fast and fun. 6 months and no mechanical problems to report. I have noticed some pitting on the front windshield, seems a little more than normal wear I would say but not a problem. I do live in the high desert and alot of dust and particulates have stuck to the white paint, a little bumpy when running fingers over. Looks like small dark pin tip particles. I used meguires clay bar, gloss polish #2 then clear coat gold wax to finish. Wow what a shine, and the paint is smooth again.
  • lrymallrymal Posts: 105
    Hiya folks, if you wish to replace your current "buried deeply within the caves" instrument guages' illumination with something sportier, go to . This modification is for '99 - 02 SE models.

    This is an interesting site, allowing you to totally customize your instrument cluster, including allowing you to have white-faced guages, among many other colors, and an indiglo (various colors, user-changeable color) illumination scheme.

    About four of us jumped at the chance rather quickly, but there needs to be about eleven more since SpeedHut needs fifteen pre-orders before they can justify tooling up to make the modification.

    At any rate, if you are a SEer wanting to dress up your '99 - '02 instrument cluster, here is a great opportunity. Certainly outclasses the cheap overlay kits.
  • What about GT owners?
  • How did you like the soothsayer joe3891 prediction?

    I'll have to check this out. I assume it has a platinum impeller and is located inside the block where the engine must be removed for replacement.

    Water pumps do have a finite life mostly determined by the condition of the coolant and drive tension. GM went to the Texaco Dexcool phosphate free extended life coolant, with one of the benefits being to extend the life of the water pump. This coolant is incompatabile with regular ethylene glycol and when mixed causes some severe cooling problems.
  • joe3891joe3891 Posts: 759
    Check it out,price of pump not bad,tearing the whole front of the engine apart to replace is a bummer.You start by taking the front cover off then chain, guides and on an on.
  • I looked at my 2000 Alero and concluded that the water pump is tucked away down at the bottom front of the engine, and from what you say and what I saw I'm assuming that it is driven by the cam chain. However, as the chain is oil lubricated, would a leaky water pump seal allow the the coolant to leak into the engine oil? Maybe tomorrow I'll run it up on the ramps and look from underneath to see what this monstrosity looks like and what's driving it .
  • joe3891joe3891 Posts: 759
    No it won't,it has a weep hole that lets it drop to the ground.It would have to be a 2 seal setup,1 for water an 1 for oil and the weep hole in between.
  • nogm4menogm4me Posts: 13
    I thought I would offer this even though I don't own a Grand Am. GM " forces "
    tire vendors to subscribe to their tire build specification ( known as " TPC" )
    and it varies as to type and use of vehicle ie: SUV, police fleet, etc. I have a
    Chev Lumina factory equiped with Michelin H4's and had them all replaced
    by 50 k miles,...why. At half tread depth the tires were DANGEROUS in
    the wet and the sidewalls were wiped out. By wiped out I mean one could literally
    poke therir finger into the casing. This combination of poor cornering and
    lousey wet traction encouraged me to replace them all. And those of you
    complaining of the " squeak " I encourage to do the same. I suspect the
    sidewall is deflecting so much that it actually rubs the rim flange during rotation.
    That's my " spin " on the issue.
  • I'd be much more likely to replace all 4 tires if the General was footing the bill. I have taken good care of these tires with frequent rotations and constant pressure regulation. They show no unusual wear.

    At $150 a piece and only 41K miles on them, they will be run at least another 10K before they are swapped out. Unless of course I have a blow out before then!
  • johnskevjohnskev Posts: 98
    I have a 99 Grand Am 2 door V4. Just yesterday the drivers side window came out of the track. The service department said the window motor needs to be replaced. Sadly, I had this same problem in October 2000, but it was covered under warranty then. Now I'm pretty teed off because I'm out of warranty and also the 12 month/12000 mile part warranty is up on the motor that had been replaced (note that it's the 12 month part that got me, I'm under the 12000 mile limit). Since I live in Minnesota and we're finally getting some real Minnesota weather, I needed the window fixed immediately. The final cost was $450, which is personally outrageous considering I had the exact issue under a year and a half ago.

    I've seen some TSBs relating to window glass issues:
    #01-08-64-012A, Issued Sep 01, Door Glass - Comes Out of Run Channel.
    #99-08-64-004, Issued Apr 99, Run Channel Loose to the Door Frame.

    Does anyone have these full TSBs?

    First, I'm wondering if the window motor really needs replacing. Second, if TSBs exist on an issue, shouldn't I be covered even though I don't have any warranty left?

    Thanks for any help.
  • burdawgburdawg Posts: 1,524
    I don't see what the motor has to do with the glass coming out of the track. The motor only provides the drive to move the glass up and down. If the glass is coming out of the track I would look for a mis-aligned or bent track, bent or faulty regulator, or in some extreme cases a mis-aligned door that is being tweeked when it closes.
    If this repair has already been done under warranty it should still be covered even if the main warranty has expired.
    Two door cars are hard on power window regulators. The long glass puts a lot of torque on the components, but they should last much longer than this.
    I'm sorry I don't have the TSB's, we havn't had any window problems on either of our GA's.
  • sweet16sweet16 Posts: 3
    Hi. I haven't posted a message since my first one. I was asking for people opinions about the Grand Am. I read all the feedback and thank you. I did purchase a 2002 Grand Am.
    I was going to purchase a leftover 2001 at SIFFORD PONTIAC IN BOGOTA NJ. But for lack of a better word, they screwed me. They matched the best price I had from another dealer, and the night before I filled out the paper work, I double checked on my APR's and rebates I would get. Well, the next day they took back everything they said and they could only get me 9.9% APR We went to CERAMI PONTIAC IN PARAMUS NJ. They are great!! I got a 2002 for a little more than the 2001. and 3.9% APR So my point? SIFFORD PONTIAC SUCKS!! I also found out they have jerked around many people and an ex-employee states they repair cars (body work) and don't tell the consumer.


  • dindakdindak Posts: 6,632
    Anyone here see the 04 Grand Am in the new Motor Trend?

  • johnskevjohnskev Posts: 98
    I just thought the TSBs might have some other info about my problem, especially regarding the regulator. If that's the problem, then maybe they're mis-diagnosing the problem.

    I think that the problem should still be covered since I already had the problem, but they are saying repaired/replaced parts only have a 12month/12000mile warranty on them, which this doesn't fall under since it's been 16 months.
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