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Chevy Express/GMC Savana

191012141530

Comments

  • Hi i just got a 2002 GMC Savana Extended Cargo Van with the 5.7L Engine. I have 3K on the Van and Have 2 Problems. First I get Alot of Water Condensation Coming out of the Rear Pipe and I also get water condesation on the Back of the Muffler coming down. Today i looked carefully at the Condensation and it seems to be full of Black Soot. When I put a white towel under the exaust it turns black and all wet any ideas.
  • Im thinking about buying a Hyundai SUV. The value is really hard to overlook. I made a mistake on bought the worst car in the world, 99 Kia Sportage EX, ,and now I want to buy American. However, fuel economy, and utility is what i really need. I don't need anything real fancy. Just something that can tow a hoby cat, and some musical equipment. I was thinking about a Chevy Astro, Or Maybe some sort of blazer or jimmy. Whatever it is, Im looking for value. Expecially factory to dealer incentives, that will make the cars cheaper.

    What do you guys think about the Ford Explorer sport? hehehe.

    please respond to maybesantafe@yahoo.com
  • I was looking for axle info for my Express, and ran across this stuff on GM's webpage for the 03 Express re-do. Based on the changes, looks like GM finally pulled their head out and fixed everything wrong with Express:


    http://209.61.155.43/division/gmc/news/releases/020306_redesignedvans_gmc.html

  • jgmilbergjgmilberg Posts: 872
    I bet 10 buck they leave those wobbly mirrors on there! Still to this day they all are the same, good for 6000 miles then they are useless. I am glad to see them going to the new engines, does any one know if they are going to include the 4.2L I6 in the mix as the base engine?
  • xfilesxfiles Posts: 132
    What does that mean? I could say the same about Honda, Toyota, Ford, etc. What specifically are your complaints about the express? Considering there are only 3 choices among full size vans, your pick is limited, and every model has their faults, and guaranteed they all will need maintenance. Narrow down the fact that Dodge is out of the running in my book with their current van, your left then with only Ford or GMC, and then both have their flaws, and some people like one design, and others the other. It's a tough choice! If you drive a Ford van for a while, you may find things again you don't like, it never ends.

    I believe either the Ford or the GMC are pretty good, and I accept the fact that both will have their own repair problems, but I bet in the long run both will average about the same for total maintenance costs over the years. I'll take the huge leg room advantage of the GMC, and bite the bullet when it comes to any repairs smaller or larger. I want the comfort when travelling, and the ease of getting around the dog house, to me that is more important then anything else in a full size van. I'll live with minor complaints or costs, or wobbly mirrors (although mine does not wobble).

    Good luck with whatever full size van we may have! Lets just enjoy what we got. I also prefer it for the huge cargo space, load capacity, towing capacity that mini vans cannot match. This is when I appreciate it even more considering the limited choices we have.
  • I have never had a problem at my local dealer. Any concern has been well addressed.

    A 1/4" spot near the gutter on the roof was missing paint. Clearly, the spray guns at the factory must have been out of adjustment. It is tough to see this spot since the van is 7 feet tall and the paint is light brown. However, I noticed this the first time I waxed it in 1999 and reported it.

    Now nearly 3 years later, I had it fixed. they re painted the entire big roof. Sure, the van was in for a week but I had a great free loaner to drive. Now the paint and clear coat on the roof is new and the thickest. This paint should last longer than the rest.

    The cassette deck plays only one channel (right). I'll take that in to get fixed next.

    I like the warranty and my service center. Together they are keeping a 3 year old van in new condition without direct cost to me.

    As far as the reliability, it has never failed to run well. Other than the paint, I haven't experienced any other problems than I would expect from a similar vehicle.
  • jgmilbergjgmilberg Posts: 872
    Well as far as I am concerned the Express or Savana are the only full size vans I would own. The biggest problem I have with it is the mirrors that after 6000 miles look like the glass is mounted with silly putty. They literally wobble around to the point I think it is a real safety hazard. Those mirrors go on to cargo vans as well as the conversions, and passenger vans. This is really dangerous on the cargo vans for the simple reason that you NEED the mirrors to look into and change lanes because they don't have windows to check the blind spots. If you put a blind spot mirrors on the wobblers you still can't use them. In my family we have 3 GM vans 2 Express and 1 Savana SLT, all have the same mirror problem. I can't believe that the Motor Vehicle Safety Standard board, or the National Transportation Safety Board has not done anything to force them to change the design.
  • xfilesxfiles Posts: 132
    I've heard enough complaints about them mirrors on the Savana and express. Sounds like we need a recall on them, considering it is a safety issue.I wonder if the National Transportation safety board is even aware of it.

    As a solution for the problem I am wondering if a dab of clear silicon at the four corners would hold it, I will have to look more closely at my mirrors. Then if a change is ever needed you cut through the silicon and add some more. Considering one position is usually enough , it might be a temporary answer, or the only solution for now. Considering silicon is one of the few safe materials used to glue mirrors to walls (other glues dissolve the mirror coating),I think it should hold just nice, and would be quite invisible if a small amount is used.
  • xfilesxfiles Posts: 132
    I noticed it is not the black exterior body that shakes, but rather the mirror inside. I only have 5200 miles on mine, and I already can see it will be a problem like everyone else has. I pressed on the top and then on the bottom and found lose play......what a disapointment, but not unexpected.

    Although having power mirros is nice, and we paid for the option, I can see that clear silicon (very little) on the 4 corners is the only option for now. I set mine once and have never reset them, so it is not a big deal to me. But since we paid for it, someone needs to take the initiative to complain and get a recall started. That is hiway robbery in my book. Another option to drive the manufacturer crazy is to keep asking for replacements while under warranty. Guaranteed after about 3 replacements (both sides), and if everyone does the same under warranty....they might get the message. Otherwise I love the vehicle so far, and expect repairs in the future like everyone else. With only 2 choices...Ford and GMC in full size vans, were going to have to live with accepting all the imperfections from both companies. Maybe I should hang plastic lemons off both my mirrors (call it lemon mirrors). It should get some attention at a dealership when you drive in to look at some cars.
    But so long as the tranny and engine are good, this is more important to me and much more costly. So far everyone seems happy in here.
  • vandalybay1vandalybay1 Posts: 43
    Silicone dabs may work fine.
    My 1999 mirrors are ok. No bug deflector on my van. A little wobble at above 70 mpg. After reading the posts, I considered wedging a bit of black closed cell foam between frame and mirror as a temporary vibration damper. Haven't tried it yet because, for me, the wobble is tolerable.
  • xfilesxfiles Posts: 132
    An interesting thought hit me regarding what may be a possible cause of the fast failure rate for the mirrors. One cause may be road vibration, but a more likely cause is using a high pressure wand while washing your van. I have done it myself, 1500 or more psi pointed at the mirrors even 3 feet away is a tremendous amount of force, especially when the surface area of that mirror is greater then on most vans. So it may be built tough enough for road vibration, but not tough enough to handle high pressure washing which causes a tremendous amount of back and forth vibration when hit with spray. Your likely cracking components, or bending, who knows what without taking the mirror apart. I know from now on it will NOT GET any direct spray from my 2000 PSI wand. Unfortunatley we are all doing the same thing, and it is far more damaging in my book then simple road vibration. So far my slight bit of vibration is bearable, but I am hoping it will not get any worse (unless components have cracked)when I stop hitting it with high pressure water.

    I like the black foam idea over silicone if other drivers use the same vehicle. It allows quick changes, but if it ever got behind the mirror, the stuff might cause more problems. I think we need to be writing this stuff to GMC so they know about it.....Shees!
  • lynandmikelynandmike Posts: 1
    I have an '02 1500 Passenger Van with 8,000 miles. There's a vibration at 30mph +. Dealer
    balanced tires, rotated tires, and replaced driveshaft. Any suggestions out there. It's driving me nuts. Took it to another dealer and they said they didn't have one on the lot to compare it.
    Told me that might just be how it rides!!! Please help.
  • xfilesxfiles Posts: 132
    I have the 2001 factory shop manuals from GMC for the Savana van. I took a look under "vibration diagnosis and correction" and found many different tables that list the steps to narrow down to a specific problem. There were tests for tire and wheel, driveline, hub/axle, engine balance, accessory isolation, etc. It then lists types of vibration symptoms like shake, roughness, buzz, tingling, moan or droan, whine, etc. My point is the dealer mechanic has to follow through all the various steps in the manual to narrow it down, and no one in here can make an opinion without knowing if its coming from the front or back or road testing it. Also the dealer should have a J J38792-VS Electronic Vibration Analyzer (EVA)to hook up.

    I think it's best to see as many dealers as you need. I got a feeling this is an area not always easy to diagnose and you might be brushed off, there is no money in it for them to spend hours looking for a problem they can't easily find. By seeing more dealers someone might have the right answer or be energetic enough to look carefully.

    I would start with test driving another vehicle to confirm your really have a problem, a cargo or passenger van makes no difference so long as engine size and vehicle size are the same. IF there is a noticeable difference, they have to fix it. I've notices smaller dealers love to find things to fix for you while it is under warranty, they will spend more time I think diagnosing the problem.

    You might want to buy those manuals and read up on the problem yourself. There not cheap, but there is a lot of information there to save you money in the long run (simple or advanced repairs). You might be the only one to read through it all to give them some ideas.

    Good luck.
  • jgmilbergjgmilberg Posts: 872
    Out of the 3 family owned vans only one of them is power washed at a drive through car wash. The other 2 are hand washed and rinsed with a garden hose. It might be a factor, but not the root cause of the problem. If you stick silicone drops on the 4 corners it will stabilize the mirror and get rid of the vibration, but it fixes the mirror in one position and if you need to change the position for a shorter/taller driver you are stuck. When I drive my dad's van I take a piece of cardboard and wedge it under the mirror to stop the wobble. It's the whole mirror mount, not just the glass, so I don't know where to turn next.
  • jgmilbergjgmilberg Posts: 872
    Well they are finally doing something with these things!!

    New for '03 are the following:

    1 Left side 60/40 doors, like the passenger side.
    2 All wheel drive availability
    3 Engines 4.8L, 5.3L, and the 6.0L(3/4 and 1 ton only) ditching the old 305 and 350 engines.

    Returning for a repeat performance are the Mickey Mouse wobbling mirrors! They never learn.
  • xfilesxfiles Posts: 132
    Sticking cardboard may work for you, although most alternatives will look a bit sloppy. Chose whatever method pleases you, I'm sure it's obvious they all work. I mentioned silicone because many of us are the only drivers of the vehicle and silicone is more invisible for them.

    I think most here are complaining about the glass itself, not the whole mount. My mounts are solid, and if your looking at a mounting problem, take the door panel off and tighten it. Either way, it does not make good sense to hit the mirrors directly with a high pressure power wash. Touch the glass and you can see how weak they appear in design. High pressure spray is well known to have damaged many radiators, and I bet mirrors are just as susceptible.

    By the way, the root cause is not the power washing, but the poor design of the mirrors! It looks like the 2003 models will have the same mirrors, but with the improvements introduced....I bet people will buy even more of them regardless of the mirror problem. I guess there are more important issues then mirrors when buying, and GMC has done a good job in that dept with all the new updates. I can't wait to see one.
  • Kirstie_HKirstie_H Posts: 10,820
    A journalist is looking for someone who bought one "twin" over another where the manufacturer offers two or more vehicles based on the same basic platform. (a Maxima vs. an I35 (or I30) or the TL vs. Accord)
    Did you know it was basically the same vehicle as the other?
    Why did you choose it over the other?
    Please submit your response to jfallon@edmunds.com no later than Wednesday, May 15.

    MODERATOR
    Need help navigating? kirstie_h@edmunds.com - or send a private message by clicking on my name.
    Share your vehicle reviews

  • wayneeewayneee Posts: 1
    I was wondering what anyone else might have paid through their dealer for an extended warranty. Mine cost 995.00 for 5 years/60000 miles
  • jschrandjschrand Posts: 1
    I recently purchased a 2001 Savana that now has about 500 miles on it. When accelerating with the AC on, there is a strong odor inside the vehicle. It is very similar to the smell of natural gas in a home. Has anyone else experienced this or have any suggestions? I'm looking for some background before we take it into the dealership.

    Thanks.
  • vandalybay1vandalybay1 Posts: 43
    Hello,
    I recall an odor that faintly smelled of ammonia. I reported it, they replaced a filter, it eventually went away.
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