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Oldsmobile Aurora Maintenance & Repair

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  • Hi All,
    I have a '95 Aurora that is really giving me a fit lately.

    Six months ago I had a problem with it not starting at all. I had it towed to my mechanic and he changed the fuel pump, and fuel filter. Took the car home and it ran for about a week and then the same thing over again. 6 months and 6 fuel pumps, fuel tank, injectors, fuel rail, later I am still having the same problem.

    I have had this car to an Oldsmobile/Cadillac dealer (they are the ones that said the injectors were plugged up) and to two different mechanics. Yesterday, I finally got dirty myself and removed the cover from the fuel tank (inside the trunk) to gain access to the fuel pump. I wanted to check the voltage at the pump to see if it was getting power while it would not start. It was, it was getting approx 11.5 v with the key on, cranking voltage at the pump was approx 10.3. I put the plug back on while it was cranking and the engine fired and ran good for 2 days.

    I had heard different opinions about "after-market" fuel pumps not working with the Aurora's so I finally broke down and took it back to the dealer to have yet another pump installed. This time is was an OEM pump from GM. Thought this was the fix, well 10 hrs after picking it up at the dealer the same thing again.

    The funny part of this whole thing is that every time it is towed and gets to a garage the darn thing fires up and runs fine. When I had the pump cover off after checking the voltage I also tapped on the top of the fuel pump with my tire iron (tapped! not SMACKED! - lol).

    I am really at my wits end with this car I paid $4000 for it in 2002 and it has cost me well over $3000 in repair bills over the past 6 months. I have checked the wiring harness from the relay back to the pump, the relay itself, fuses, etc etc. The one thing that I keep coming back to is the fact that the steering column was replaced shortly after I bought the car and though perhaps there could be something going wrong there with the security system. The ignition switch was swapped out of the old column into the new one.

    I have changed the PCM, battery, fuses, pumps, injectors, fuel rail, relays, fuel tank, fuel filters, etc etc. I really do not know where to go from here and I really don't want to just "junk" it as it is a thing with me now, I NEED to know what the heck is wrong with this thing.

    PLEASE anybody HELP!

    Eagle
  • I would be real interested to know if you ever found the problem. I am having a similar problem with my 95, I gave it my daughter and $2500 and 6 months later it still won't start all the time. Put it on a tow truck, tow it to the garage, by jove it starts and runs for 2 more days. Repeat the above if you want to continue driving it...LOL...

    Thanks
    Eagle :P
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America: I70 & I75Posts: 18,151
    On some cars there's an automatic blower control that replaces the resistor coils on manual switching for fan speeds. The box is on the heater somewhere. On H cars it's on the blower box in the engine compartment. The item can fail in connect mode with the blower motor running. And others fail to work predictably changing speeds oddly.

    It may be on the heater box inside the car but it's cooled by the stream of air from the blower itself. Advance Auto has them for H cars, leSabre and Bonneville.
  • blk97aurorablk97aurora Posts: 573
    Eagle,

    All the repair attempts you report are fuel-related. However, you did not mention replacing the fuel-pressure regulator. If it is leaking, it causes the engine to flood and be hard to start. Usually not a no-start situation, however.

    Has anyone checked for spark? How about diagnostic codes?

    I'm wondering if your problem could be an intermittent ignition module or crankshaft position sensor.

    Les
  • blk97aurorablk97aurora Posts: 573
    N T,

    I have owned my '97 for 6.5 years and 91 000 miles; during that time I have kept meticulous records for fuel use. My DIC almost always reports less fuel used than is pumped into the tank. The DIC mpg is off by the same percentage. Like you, I also figure the DIC readout is calculated by accumulating injector PWM over time; I suspect there is either a problem with the PCM algorithm or assumed fuel pressure (and therefore fuel delivery) isn't correct.

    My '97 service manual shows the injectors are individually controlled by the PCM. I cannot find any timing values.

    The only connection I can see between cruise and TCC is the brake switch that is intended to turn both off when brake pedal is depressed. I don't see how that might be causing your problem.

    Les
  • Hi Les,

    Thanks for that, yes we have checked the spark, in fact when the engine won't fire on it's own, if you spray throttle body cleaner into the throat while it is cranking it will light right up and run as long as you pour the cleaner to it. So that elimiates electrical, at least from a spark, timing, etc., position. The other thing that I didn't mention either is the fact that while it is cranking it should build pressure in the fuel rail, it does not, when you depress the schrader valve on the end of the fuel rail there is no pressure at all. However when the pump is working there is plenty of pressure.

    Hmmm, yes they have checked the codes, but I can't tell you what they are at this time. As I stated it is real difficult because everytime we put it on a tow rig and take it to a shop, it starts right off while at the shop...

    Eagle
  • coreyg1coreyg1 Posts: 34
    98 Olds Aurora
    Any advice on AC that isn't working, the shop said it was "probably" the AC compressor. They quoted me "$850" which seems high, has anyone else had this problem with the compressor going out? I wonder if there is a leak somewhere else... I would hate to spend that kind of money it isn't necessary, yet I do want AC for the summer.

    Thanks
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 44,781
    well the shop should "probably" test the system completely and probably come up with the right answer before spending your money. There are plenty of good diagnostic tools to pinpoint an AC leak exactly.

    MODERATOR

  • blk97aurorablk97aurora Posts: 573
    Eagle,

    A quote from your first post, "I wanted to check the voltage at the pump to see if it was getting power while it would not start. It was, it was getting approx 11.5 v with the key on, cranking voltage at the pump was approx 10.3. I put the plug back on while it was cranking and the engine fired and ran good for 2 days."

    I can't quite tell from your description -- did you check for voltage at the pump connector, while connected to the pump and engine cranking and not starting? Or was the connector disconnected? Either way, I am suspicious of the connector, either corroded contacts or broken wire.

    Les
  • billy17billy17 Posts: 1
    Same thing happened to me yesterday for the fist time. Car has 80M.
    Slamming so hard felt like driveshaft was coming htrough floor.
    Haven't started it yet today.
    Any luck finding the problem?
    Bought the car 3M ago and has riden like a dream so far until yesterday.
  • I would check the speed sensor that is at the top of the transmission. This sensor checks the speed of the internal transmission and then allows the shift to take place. If the sensor is bad the transmission will shift arbitrarily and will result in the slamming. The good part, sensor is $45, labor to install about $400.

    Eagle
  • Hi Les,
    I suspected the same thing and I am really baffled by this. Yes I disconnected the plug and checked the voltages that way. This time when it died, I did the same thing but no voltage at the pins. ArrrrrrrGGGGGGGG.... I am so frustrated with this.

    Eagle
  • blk97aurorablk97aurora Posts: 573
    Eagle,

    You have already checked everything I have suggested so far, so I don't know if I'm a help. But I have a couple more ideas.

    I think you have eliminated everything from the pump downstream. Looking upstream (electrically) from the pump, there's ckt 120 (gray) to the relay, which you have replaced. The relay is gounded via ckt 451 (blk/wht); I have heard of Auroras having problems with intermittent grounds. Power to the relay comes from the 15-amp fuel pump fuse via ckt 1042 (red). The relay is controlled by the PCM via ckt 465 (grn/wht).

    This is where it gets interesting. You wrote in your first (IIRC) post that you suspected the security system. The PCM has a "theft deterrent fuel enable" input which comes from the Pass Key II decoder module via ckt 229 (dark blue). I don't know if this module is part of what was replaced in your steering column. Maybe the module is the problem, or a loose connection.

    Hope this helps.

    Les

    PS: the wiring info is from my '97 service manual. Your '95 Aurora may not be the same.
  • macecynmacecyn Posts: 4
    97 model. Already had the compressor replaced. Now is only blowing cold air out of the passenger vents. Any comments on this? Great car, but in 18 months gone thru 2 alternators and other a/c temp related issues. $$$?
  • hammen2hammen2 Posts: 1,313
    Take the car to an A/C shop and make sure the system is full. May need a fill/recharge (or they never properly filled the system).
    Also, could be an HVAC controller problem (actuated doors not opening properly on the driver side)...
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America: I70 & I75Posts: 18,151
    If it's a vacuum system like other cars, Buick, in the GM lineup, it could be one of the actuator motors (electric) that moves the vane that controls the relative temp of driver and passenger air.

    Also read where someone had a low freon charge and only one side of the evaporator got cold and that was the side from which the air went primarily to the passenger vents.
  • I have a 2001 Aurora and i'm trying to find out how to replace the bulbs in the tail light and i'm trying to find out how to replace the bulbs for the fog lights, can anyone help me out
  • macecynmacecyn Posts: 4
    Thanks. I got pretty much the same diagnostic from my shop tech. Funny, they seem to know me by name now and recognize the car. Checked it again last night. Now, no a/c at all, although the line after the compressor seems cold. My only regret w/ this used car (59k)is not buying the extended warranty at the dealership.
  • jojo4jojo4 Posts: 4
    The tail lamp should be a lot simpler than it is, but GM created something that makes absolutely no sense. Anyway first thing to do is pull back the carpet. That will expose the black nob like screws that seem to really have no purpose. This is where it gets a little tricky, you have to pull the plastic molding back to expose the three screws that free the whole lamp fixture which you can than completely pull out and change the bulb. The reason its trickey is because the plastic molding isn't made to flex the way that needed to expose the main screws. So try not to break the molding like I did, and if it gives you as much trouble as it gave me, do what I did and change all the bulbs when you finally get the fixture removed. Haven't changed the fog lamps yet. Good luck.
  • Thanks Les,

    I found out that the hose to the engine was clogged and the coolant was not circulating correctly. Do you know anything about rear brakes. Took her into Tires Plus because I heard a squeaking noise on the passager side in the rear. They tell me that it is my caliper in the rear on the driver side is frozen and not working. If that is true why are my brakes on the passager squeaking. Sorry not every knowledgeable about car repairs. But when I asked that question they could not come up with a intelligent answer to convince me that the caliper is actually frozen.

    Do you have any suggestions???????
  • blk97aurorablk97aurora Posts: 573
    pearlie98,

    You could have two separate problems.

    Single-piston calipers that our Auroras have are designed to slide side-to-side on their two mounting pins to accommodate brake pad wear. The calipers can become "frozen" due to lubrication failure. Sometimes that means the brake will not apply at all; other times it is applied all the time. Neither is a good situation.

    On to the passenger side -- sometimes disc brakes just squeak for no apparent reason and it's not a problem. However, the squeak could be the brake pad wear indicator contacting the rotor. If this is the case, then the pad material is almost gone and the pads need to be replaced.

    Hope this helps.

    Les
  • coreyg1coreyg1 Posts: 34
    98 Aurora,

    I recently had the car in the shop for an estimate on shocks, the rear felt a little off. They had said one was leaking and they should eventually be replaced.

    Also I think it is called the Ride HEight ARm?? is broken. I looked under there and see some plastic deal that is broken, I assume thats what they are talking about. Any help on this.

    Also maybe related I just had new tires put on, when i went to pick it up the back end looked like it had been jacked up, then by this morning it had settled back down, kinda strange>>>

    Thanks
    Corey
  • 96 Olds here.... Just replaced the 2-3 solenoids... nice 425 dollar job... computer diagnostics is saying that the gears are working fine.. Although when taking on the road obviously thats not the case its still stuck in second gear. Recommend driving on rough road to free up a possibly sticky valve... or replacement of transmission.. the pan was clean so no problems with clutching how else might get the SOB up an runnin again? THANKS! :lemon:
  • uknowuknow Posts: 2
    I have a 95 aurora umm i think 79k on her just sitting in my yard gathering dust, i personally have about 100 hours and alot of money trying to fix, heres the problem, had a radiator leak, put some stop leak fixed it for awhile until summer came around and the heat killed it, my radiator busted so I purchased a brand new out of the box radiator, it has overheated since, bled the system numerous times, water pump, new lines sensors on the fans, new hoses, new shroud, flushed, new undercarriage to guide the air right everything and it still overheats now it only overheats idling, NOT going down the road so it seems to me like circulation but im lost, can someone help?
  • blk97aurorablk97aurora Posts: 573
    uknow,

    What is your evidence of overheating? How high is the temp gauge?

    Les
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 44,781
    You need to pressurize the cooling system with a pump and check for a bad head gasket first of all, and also test the coolant for combustion gases in the coolant. These items, with instructions, should be available at places like Autozone.

    Rapid overheating at idle is not a good sign. Have you swapped out the thermostat and checked the operation of your electric cooling fan?

    Anyway, start from ZERO--do the pressure test and find out for certain if you have head gasket issues or a crack in the cylinder head where all you're doing is making water for tea.

    MODERATOR

  • ehasleyehasley Posts: 18
    Hey folks, i have an interesting problem here. When i bought my '97 i noticed the Dip Stick Tube had a kink in it, making it nearly impossible to remove. Today trying to check my oil, a 1/8 inch end of the plastic piece broke off and is some where in the tube or pan. After calling around to buddies to get advice, i wedged in a piece of dowel rod to make a temporary fix before i make it to the caddy dealer. I dont want a run around from dealer, being that im 19, is this a big problem. Will the pan need to be dropped so it can be removed or will it come out in the next oil change? any help would be greatly appreciated.

    side note, i need a RAD flush, are those sealant tabs needed or can i just go to a shop and let them do it. Or use the GM parts?

    Thanks
    Evan
  • I hope that someone can help with this Please. I have a 1997 Aurora with about 146000 miles on her. In the last 6 months it has developed this stalling habit. Somedays it doesn't do it, but most of the time it does. It usually takes about a half hour before it happens for the first time, then at first the car won't re-start after a few tries it fires up again and at a high rpm then goes back to normal. It might not do it again for a while or it might do it right away. Each time that it does it and I turn on the key I hear the fuel pump for a second or two, but the car usually wont start. If you turn off the key and wait a minute it usually starts, but not always, but it never stalls for the first half hour of driving, no matter how I drive. Also it seems like it doesn't stall as much when the weather is cooler out, but it has done it in the winter a few times. I'm ready to park the car on the railroad tracks and say good bye.
  • blk97aurorablk97aurora Posts: 573
    outlawwolf,

    Sounds like you may be experiencing the classic Classic leaky fuel-pressure regulator (FPR) problem. It is a simple 10-minute job. Use only an ACDelco replacement.

    Has your Classic had the fuel rail recall done? If not, have it done. There is a significant fire hazard with the original nylon fuel rail. You might be able to get a new FPR included with the recall.

    If you need more info, search the archives or repost.

    Hope this helps.

    Les
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