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Buick Park Avenue

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  • 97ultra97ultra Posts: 14
    My 2000 PA Ultra with 68000 miles started skipping. My dealer says I need new spark plugs and new spark plug wires. He quoted a fee of $400 for the plugs and wires installed. I realize that new plugs and wires may cost more than the $35 I paid when I was young, but $400 seems excessive. Am I being ripped off by the dealer?

    $400 seems steep to me. Even if the dealership charges you $80 for the plugs and wires, that still gives you 4 hours of labor at $80/hr. I changed the plugs on my '97 Ultra (same everything as yours) in an hour or two a few weeks ago, and I don't do this for a living. Getting at the rear plugs was a pain in the butt (spark plug boot puller might have helped), but it's not that hard, and the only thing I had to remove to get at the plugs/wires was the plastic engine cover.
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America: I70 & I75Posts: 18,196
    Changing the rear plugs I found is much easier if I stand on something to make it easier to reach over to the middle of the rear hood area. I use a 24 pack of soda cans.
  • Did you try to stick another tape in there or press eject while using a butter knife to get it to pop out? We did that and it worked.
  • 97ultra97ultra Posts: 14
    Quote: "I have a 1995 and a 2001 Buick Park Avenue. Both have very low miles for the year model. I have noticed that they both tend to wander quite a bit. I have had both aligned and new tires, front ends checked etc. I recently drove a 2003 and found that one as true as an arrow. Any ideas or comments? Did Buick have a handling/steering problem over this 5-6 year period? Thanks!"

    That may be a reflection of what tires are fitted. The 2001 and 2005 are the same car. You could get an optional sport suspension on the Ultra, though.

    My PA is a '97 Ultra with the standard suspension, and it tracks very well. Tires are 60-series Michelin Harmony radials, I think.
  • 97ultra97ultra Posts: 14
    Quote: I am looking a '02 Ultra a Buick dealer. He is saying the ultra does not require premium fuel. Can anyone outhere give me the straight story is prem. fuel req. for the PA ultra??

    The owner's manual for my '97 Ultra (same car, same engine) says regular can be used in an emergency, but premium is highly recommended. The reason is that the supercharger heats the air 100 degrees or so above ambient when you're on boost, so predetonation (knocking) is a real problem with low-octane gasoline if you floor it. To prevent knocking on boost when low-octane gas, the computer has to cut the spark timing way back when you step on it, so power and fuel efficiency will suffer significantly. AFAIK, the car will run fine on regular as long as you drive sedately and stay off boost, but I always run premium in mine (the price difference is only a few percent these days).
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America: I70 & I75Posts: 18,196
    Your alignment may not be actually right in the middle of all the specs. If the rears are within specs but not ideal they can still cause some odd steering effects.

    /What kind of tires. Really soft tires might cause more wander.
  • I have a 1999 Park Ave, doing about the same. At 50 mph, going up hill, tach is just below 1500, it acts like it should downshift, but i get the jerks, just like it would be cutting out. Once it down shifts its okay. Dealer has replaced Pressure selonoid valve on the tranny, but it is still not fixed. I noticed a reply to your email, did you try that and any luck.
    Micr
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America: I70 & I75Posts: 18,196
    Sounds like spark plug wires. You didn't say how many miles on the car. It's at least 6 years old, maybe 7, and the wires do fail slowly. It will act like various problems. It's a good time to replace both plugs and wires with original equipment wires. Don't try to new blue wires or the superdooper ones at the box parts stores. Get original equipment quality at GM or NAPA, e.g. The slight extra cost, if any, will pay off.

    The problem is called spark scatter. The motor is under high load and the spark wires break down and let the spark jump to another wire or ground.
  • redmageredmage Posts: 1
    we have been having trouble with our 92 park. it will start up ok then after being driven around for a while it will die on us there will be no spark coming from the coil pack and the fuel pump will shut down so there is no gas getting to the motor dose anyone have any clue what to do. thank you :confuse:
  • smallbitessmallbites Posts: 6
    Al have you found out anything? Just happened to me in my 98PA. Happened when battery was reconnected. I have heard from 2 people in the business that the dash has to be opened so that the needle can be reached, and turned backwards to empty, not pushed over pin. OK. if thats the case, anyone know how to remove dash?
  • smallbitessmallbites Posts: 6
    Can someone advise me how to remove the dash board in a 98 PA. I need to get at the fuel gauge. thanks.
  • ann16ann16 Posts: 2
    I just fixed this on my 99...Use a magnet, touch the dash right by the gauge and it will go right back into place.
  • ann16ann16 Posts: 2
    The dash is a quick removal but that will not work because the glass is sealed. Take a magnet and touch the glass by the gauge and it will return to the proper location. I just did this on my 99 and is worked great, the gauge is accurate now. I did use a large magnet but saved $400 the dealer wanted.
  • alexlloydalexlloyd Posts: 8
    Had the exact same issue on a 95 3800 Park Ave. After about $500.00 and an estimate for $300 more we changer all the plugs, wires and a weak coil pack and the issue went away... any good shop can tell you if any of your coil packs are weak.
  • alexlloydalexlloyd Posts: 8
    My lights are acting up on a 95 PA. No park and no cluster lights. All other lights are fine. The fuses are good, Jumpering power to the circuit did nothing and my overhead monitor panel is flashing all lights. Can anyone tell where to find the lighting control unit and what it looks like. I assume it is under the dash somewhere but no luck to date.
  • Hi I have a 97 that did the same thing, at first I thought it was the trans; but finally figured it to be the plug wires , might help to change plugs at same time!
  • villi1villi1 Posts: 1
    can some one help me i have no cluster lights or drive lights fuses are good where do i start
  • kessarykessary Posts: 2
    Just replaced upper intake and gaskets now the car is throwing sevice engine light and running really bad afteer a few minutes, it dies if you slow down or let off the gas and it clatters really bad like it has no oil but oil pressure is showing 129 lbs
  • waynezowaynezo Posts: 8
    Take it to Autozone. They will check the codes and tell you where the problems lie. They're usually pretty accurate and ALWAYS cheaper than the dealership.
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America: I70 & I75Posts: 18,196
    If t clatters that could mean no oil. If the pressure shows extremely high that might mean a blockage causing a backpressure. I wouldn't drive it until it's thoroughly checked and the problem found. The high oil indicator is also a problem with oil pressure sensor too, but I wouldn't count on that.
  • waynezowaynezo Posts: 8
    Briefly, here's the problem. 3800 Series II, 90K. Drove the car approx. 30 miles and parked it. Three hrs. later it wouldn't start. Heard a loud bang when I tried to start it.
    Investigation showed a broken tail shaft housing on the starter and coolant in No. 1 cylinder. Removed the throttle body to check upper plenum and found some coolant inside plenum. I know the engine was hydrolocked, but noticed no problems before parking it.
    I haven't done a compression check yet but will tonight.
    If the compression checks out and doesn't bleed down is it a safe bet that it's the lower intake gasket? How do I check that without removing the intake?
    I really need to figure this out and get it done. I work 30 miles from home one direction and the wife works 30 miles the other so we need two vehicles, and this is HER car. Wouldn't she look fine in a new pair of sneakers?
    Oh yeah, I almost forgot, Are there any contortion artists out there looking for work? Maybe you can get at the rear plugs. I think I broke my wrist trying. ;)
  • valinavalina Posts: 6
    my 91 Buick park avenue had cold air a couple of weeks ago it quit working. I carried it to a shop and they replaced 2 relays and it still doesn't blow cold air I've had it charged with r134 and still nothing can anybody heip? It kinda blows cold on the driver side but still nothing on the passenger side
  • Hi, Mickey
    Did you discover the cause of your brake noise? I too have a 2000 PA. It is an Ultra. I love the car, but the groaning!!! I have replaced wheel bearrings, brakes and had the codes cleared for the ABS, but the groan persists. I am told the noise is the ABS motor.
    I do not have any problems with vibration, but I have a nice set of Michelin HydroEdge tires on it.
    Any advice would be much appreciated! :shades:
  • buicks5buicks5 Posts: 20
    You may have one the 3800's with the bad intake manifold issue. Somewhere around 100K miles the plastic intake manifold lets go and coolant gets in all bad places. About a $1,200 repair. Please note that GM did not use the cheap plastic manifold on the Ultra supercharged engine. Also, they fixed the problem around model year 2000. Check your VIN with dealer to find out if your is in the series with bad manifold.
  • buicks5buicks5 Posts: 20
    The Driver Info Cluster (DIC) has gone dark on my 2000 Ultra with 145k miles (runs like the proverbial sewing machine with all Mobil 1 products). Is there any fix other than replacing it? Where is it reached- from underneath or by pulling the Instru Panel on top?
  • bss868sbss868s Posts: 1
    Hi, I own a 94 PA with about 158,000 mi. on it, and about 12,000 mi on most recent tranny rebuild. In the past several months I noticed that after about an hour of continuous driving, on highway, if I don't already have the cruise control engaged the rpm's automatically increase. The rpms at 70 mph are about 3000. When I take my foot off the throttle they slowly drop down to about 1200 then jump back up to about 2000, without out even touching the throttle. The only way to control this is to already have my car in cruise control. The past couple of times this has happened I had to pull over and allow my car to cool for about 15 minutes just so I could engage the cruise control at 2000 rpms before they jumped up. Appreciate any help. Thanks.
  • 97ultra97ultra Posts: 14
    Assuming you have a 4-speed transmission, it sounds like the car is downshifting from overdrive to 3rd? Easy way to tell would be to put the car in "3" instead of "D" and see if the RPM's are the same as you're seeing.

    Is your trans fluid level OK? It could possibly be a solenoid problem (say, the overdrive solenoid is going on the fritz when it gets hot), or it could be something as simple as an engine temperature sensor problem (the computer locks out overdrive until the engine is warmed up), a loose or corroded connection at the transmission electrical connector, or even a balky throttle position sensor.

    If you recently had the tranny rebuilt, and the tranny is downshifting to 3rd when it shouldn't, this may be covered under your rebuilder's trans warranty if it hasn't expired yet, if it is indeed a transmission problem.
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America: I70 & I75Posts: 18,196
    It could be a powertrain control computer problem. It could be a temperature sensor for the transmission fluid. It needs to be checked out.
  • Window regulator is bad in drivers door. All other switches on panel (windows, mirror, window lock etc) work fine. Drivers window switch makes clicking sound coming from relay junction box inside door.

    I was told by the dealer that the window regulator part is not available separately. It only comes as a "package deal" with the entire inner-door assembly ($500). This doesn't sound right to me. It also confused the parts guy, apparently you can get just the window regulatory for some Buicks?

    Does anyone have information to help. Thank you.
  • Hello, I have a 99 ultra and replaced the filter and the fuel pump, it was neither, it was in fact the CRANK SENSOR. It almost always is...I unfortunately spent too much money trying to figure it out as there is no code(s) generated in the computer. The sensor just fails, slowly. It would have helped if there was...Good luck and peace...
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