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Chevrolet Impala: Problems & Solutions



  • bcumminsbcummins Posts: 16
    Anyone had any experience with their fuel gauge not working? For a while mine seemed to be on the fritz. I'd drive up a hill and it would register and fuller and then 5 mins later I'd be back closer to empty. Now, it's just flat wrong. I put almost 16 gallons in the other day and it was registering full before I started pumping. Then it seemed to be working again, moving back towards empty as normal, but then it went back to full. etc... Has anyone ever had this repaired in any car? What's it cost? What causes this? Is it something I could repair myself?

    Also, I think I might be losing coolant... had the system flushed about 10K ago and it already appears to be below normal. Thought they pressure tested, how much fluid dissipation is normal in 10K miles?
  • hogboyhogboy Posts: 84
    Brian, there should be next to no loss of coolant in 10k in regular driving. My Silverado has gone 3 yrs and no coolant loss. Our Impala LS (build date 4/01) is going into the shop next week at 19k for many issues, the warped manifold gasket problem, warped brake rotors, ISS lube, lifting roof joint moldings, the generator voltage regulator ground screw problem for the dimming interior/exterior lights, and the bushing in the steering shaft causing the wooshing sound in the steering wheel when turning. Its a shame GM has all these problems. The Impala handles great, is roomy, gets terrific gas mileage, comfortable and a pleasure to drive.
  • bjasmundbjasmund Posts: 6
    I purchased my '03 LS a month ago and I noticed yesterday that every metal component under the driver's seat is rusty (wet rust). I'm taking it to the dealer today and I'll provide a follow-up, but I just wanted to get some opinions on what this may be attributed to.
  • bsappbsapp Posts: 21
    First thing that comes to mind is that it could be a flood car. Have you checked under the passenger's seat to see if it is the same way? Does the plastic trim around the carpet show any sign of being popped up as to remove the seats and carpet to facilitate drying? How about the trunk area, under the mat and in the spare tire well, I would check there for signs of rust or sediment that may be there on the spare rim or jack or in the well itself. Anyway, something had to really get wet there to cause that. I'm assuming this is a new car and if it was damaged, should have been a insurance write off but I've heard of such being sold as new......

  • bjasmundbjasmund Posts: 6
    I found the rust when I was doing a pretty good detail job on the car. Flood damage was my first thought, too, so I really looked hard for other signs, but none were found. The dealer is going to order new parts so we'll see what those look like. The car only had 12 miles on it when I took delivery, so I'm assuming these parts could have gotten wet and sat for a while before they were installed on the assembly line. Thanks for response and I'll post an update when the new parts come in.
  • colie74colie74 Posts: 42
    I had all of the same problems at hogboy! I also have the leak in the trunk. Water in the spare tire compartment. So maybe during the next rain you may figure out the rust issue under the seats. I would be curious to know why an 03 with 12K miles on the car would be for sale in the first place.

    Also, the service deptarment just called and said the coolant leak was coming from the intake manifold...surprise, surprise. They said they are putting in the redesigned one. Cool, I was under the impression that they were just putting in the same part as originally put in. They are providing a rental, it will be done tomorrow.

  • hogboyhogboy Posts: 84
    We got our Impala back from the dealer. They pressure checked the radiator and said there was no leak. I asked why am I still smelling burnt anti-freeze& why did the recovery tank go dry once already. No answer. Roof strips were reglued. Lousy job, left glue residue all over roof, Strips still not fully secured. Brake rotors resurfaced, (IMHO they should have been replaced since they were the only ones doing the tire rotations) steering shaft lubed (that problem fixed for now). Alternator replaced for dimming interior/exterior lights. They said it was weak. I guess I will have to go to another dealer to fix the coolant leak. Still have a year left on warranty so hopefully can get these issues resolved. Still think this car is the most bang for the buck.
  • dekesterdekester Posts: 322
    I've been reading the posts here in the Impala section as I own a 1998 Olds Intrigue. I see there are a lot of similar problems between the Olds and Chevy. The ISS being the main one. My Intrigue has the 3.8 but there has been no problem with the intake manifold. Check out the Intrigue board if you want to meet some frustrated GM owners!

    There are problems with later models having the flickering lights that GM refuses to acknowledge is a problem. Some posters have replaced the alternator 3, 4 and even 5 times!

    I'm researching my next vehicle and thought I'd read the Impala boards as I like the 3.8....

    My Olds has 27400 since I bought it 1/99 and have had many problems, but most seem to have occurred after the warranty expired!

    I'll keep lurking and learning.

  • txguytxguy Posts: 57
    See if you can get a part number on that replacement. I'm curious if they're quietly making a change.
  • hogboyhogboy Posts: 84
    Yo, I guess we got the Monday/Friday build vehicle.
  • nosirrahgnosirrahg Posts: 870
    Mine was built on a Tuesday (3/14/00; I special ordered it that January, and called frequently to find out the status when it was being built). I've still been plagued with ISS, intake manifold, warped rotors, cradle ticking, etc.

    Of course, the next day was the "Ides of March", and St. Patrick's Day was that Friday; so maybe it was just a bad week in general.
  • Well, the old alternator konked out after 73,000 kms. Cost me 300 bucks to get a new one. Yup, the warranty is over and I shudder to think what will now begin to break down.

  • colie74colie74 Posts: 42
    Hey txguy, I have my invoice here, I'll provide you with all the info off of it. Hope it helps, it has the part number on it, hope it isn't some internal number they use.

    "Pressure tested cooling system and found uppper intake manifold leaking coolant. Replaced upper intake manifold and transfer components."

    FP Number Description
    17113136 Manifold 3.265 R

    I asked the guy again as I walked out if it was truly the newly designed manifold and he said yes.

    BTW, I have always seemed to have good luck with my repairs. Seems everything has stayed fixed and was fixed on the first attempt with the exception of the trunk leak. But the ISS and the front end clicking have all been repaired first time out and so far have not re-occured. I seem to be on the later end of getting all these repairs done, maybe lessons learned?

    Take care
  • txguytxguy Posts: 57
    That's not the part number for my replacement manifold done back in January. Will have to check it out.
  • I have read about the rack and pinion (sp) "freezing" up on the new Impalas, esp. the law enforcement version. From what I read the driver cannot control the direction of the car due to the steering controls not fuctioning thus resulting in accident. Has anyone else had this experience? This has also happened in a lot of other GM vehicles.
  • hogboyhogboy Posts: 84
    I am not sure if the upper intake p/n# 17113136 is the new part. In checking another Impala site I noticed this exact p/n# posted on the site and it has been there for quite awhile. One would think if they redesigned the part a new p/n# would be issued so there would be no confusion (hardy har har). I haven't spoken to my service guy in about 3-4 wks. At that time he said there wasn't a new part available yet. Since I will be switching dealers for all my repairs now it will be interesting to see what happens when I schedule our '01 Impala LS to go in for the 2nd time for coolant leak and the 2nd time for the flickering interior/exterior lights and the 2nd time for the lifting roof strips.
  • txguytxguy Posts: 57
    I just had Llumar metallalized tint installed on my LS. I was assured it would not interfere with the AM radio reception (yes I listen to AM!). True in the city with strong signals, but out of the city reception is nil. There is some reduction in FM reception with weaker signals. It definitely interferes with the rear window antenna. I want to keep the tint for the obvious benefits in this hot climate. Is there any fix other than an exterior antenna or the front windshield variety?
  • kkc3kkc3 Posts: 6
    I've had my 2000 LS for 3 months now. 37K miles. I've had it back to the dealer 3 times already. On one trip, they greased the ISS,(clunking noise) and replaced the upper plenum assembly.(coolant smell) This was under warranty. These 2 things appear to be regulars for 2K Impala owners. Do you think I've seen the last of these 2 issues, or will they recur - say when my warranty runs out..............?
  • ghostwolfghostwolf Posts: 91
    I have tint and even before I had tint, the AM reception was just plain lousy. Even at night I have to manually tune to stations like WLS AM 890 which I can usually pick up with no problem.

    The FM is acceptable for me though. My tint is not metalic but like I say, I didn't get really great reception before the tint.

    I'm not sure what the back of the radio looks like but I do know that they sell AM antennas that are very small they might even fit under the dash.

    I guess all I'm trying to say is that I don't think your problem is just limited to you and I, I think that AM reception is just overlooked now days when they design these things.
  • dekesterdekester Posts: 322
    I have a 98 Olds Intrigue with the rear window antenna. I noticed for the first three years that the reception - both AM and FM - was weak when I had the rear window defroster on. Seems to have "corrected" itself in the past year.

    BTW, anyone remember the early 70's when GM had the antenna in the windshield? My father had a 73 Buick Apollo and the reception was bad no matter what station you were tuning in or if you were across the street from the transmitter!

This discussion has been closed.