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Cadillac Deville: Problems & Solutions



  • My Deville is overheating. After I start the engine, 3 to 5mins later the water start to boil. I check the oil for water mix. The oil and water is clean. Do you think I need to replace the heads or just change the head gasket.
  • Hard to say. I'm just speculating here but on a super-fast overheat like that, you are perhaps boiling water with exhaust gases. The head gasket could break between the cylinder and a water galley and so you wouldn't get oil contamination but also the head could crack at the exhaust valve allowing exhaust gases directly into the coolant.

    You can actually have the coolant tested for CO contamination, that would tell you right off. A compression test might not pick it up.

    Have you checked the thermostat, just on a long shot?
  • I also have a '98 Deville and I have been recently getting the message "Top Speed - Fuel off" and the engine cuts out. I had it at a dealership in another town since it happened on a trip. Dealer sent it to a local garage. They did the diagnostics and found the the "Throttle speed sensor" had tripped five different times. It tested perfectly, so they cleaned up and leads and I paid them and took my car back for a 300 mile drive home. First the cruise control quit functioning (and anybody who has a solution to this, please write) then that old message started popping up every time I hit 77 or 78 "Top speed - Fuel off" and the engine would cut out, then restart itself a few seconds later. I don't have an owners manual so I cna't look it up. Any advice???

    Dr. Tom Cotter
  • I took out the thermostat. I tried engine blocked seal . It held for about a month.
    Can I check for contamination myself. If It is contaminated do that mean I need to change the head gasket. Someone told me water maybe leaking into the intake
    manifold. I don't know help please.
  • No you can't check for CO contamination without the proper tester. If you had water leaking into the oil, your oil would look "milky and gray" when you pulled out the dip stick. There are various tests for a bad head gasket and you probably should have those done by a reputable garage. Solving overheat problems isn't easy sometimes.
  • I've been having a problem with my 98 ETC, 76K miles, as well. I have slowly been losing coolant but no leak could be ever found. I have now over heated twice. Pressure builds and it blows out what ever is left through the overflow hose at the top of the resevoir. What has been happening is that a head gasket failure is allowing coolant into the chamber, not the crank case. If it was in the crank case, your oil dip stick would be a little "foamy". That's a sure sign that the coolant is getting in. My problem is coolant is leaking into firing chamber. Question: When you step on it, can white or grey smoke be seen from the exhaust?. You should never see white smoke. You make have a head gasket that is failing. Unfortunately, this is very explensive repair and I'm investing all options. good luck! I'll write again if you respond.
  • Once again, the cooling system can be tested for combustion gases.
  • I'm thinking about buying a 2000 DTS with 53,000 miles. Based on your experience sholud I purchase it?
  • Would anyone with experience related to buying used devilles please offer your feedback. I'm thinking about buying a 2000 DTS with 53,000 miles. Based on your experience sholud I purchase it?
  • blkhemiblkhemi Posts: 1,717
    That sounds like that may be a good buy. But as with any used vehicle, take a competent mechanic along with you to inspect it. I have an '03 Deville DTS that has been an amazing vehicle. These are some of the nicest luxury cars you can buy. At a bargain price. The only major problems you're likely to encounter is because this is a 2000 Northstar you'll likely have a minor oil-burning problem. Figure something like 1/2 quart every 1500-2000 miles. Anything above that is abnormal. Oil-burning is typical of the Northstar engine. I wish it were different, but this a very complex engine that has a lot of moving parts, so it's to be expected. Don't be afraid to buy because of that. I've had a Lexus LS 400, A Infiniti Q45, and a Lincoln T-Car (which is the reason I came back to the American standard Cadillac) and they all had some sort of oil-burn or oil-sludge build-up problem. Other than that, you're likely to have a huge gas bill(or is that just me?) because you are going to love laying into that Northstar just to here it sing. But since this later Northstar runs on regular 87, it'll be a little lighter on your wallet. Finally, if the price is right, jump on it. 5 years old and only 53,000 miles sounds to be a winner.

    P.S. Whatever you do , run a Carfax on it if you don't do anything else. Remember my friend, AN OUNCE OF PREVENTION IS WORTH A POUND OF CURE.
  • Thanks for taking the time to respond Hemi. I'm going to take the plunge. I'll keepyou posted.
  • blkhemiblkhemi Posts: 1,717
    When you take it out on the test drive, drive like you just robbed the bank. Nail the accelerator to the floor and stomp on the brake pedal. I know this sounds a little iffy, but trust me you should do this in order to see if the engine is in fine tune(ie: you should hear absolutely no pinging, rattling) and the brakes should be stable without ANY steering wheel wander and the abs or brake light should not illuminate. The braking system on this car is very expensive, just like any large premium car's system is. I had a friend to buy a '00 Deville DHS and two days later he had to replace 2 calipers 2 rotors, and a whole set of brakes. Grand total for all was $779, and that's with him putting them on himself. If all checks out, you got a winner.
  • My 90 Caddy DeVille has 200,000 miles and runs great except when it shifts down a gear for acceleration. Then it vibrates and feels like it is only firing on 1/2 the cylinders. Once it reaches cruising speed the car is normal. I have had it to 2 garages and both ran diagnostics that were normal and could not find the problem. Anyone have a clue about my problem? Thanks in advance.
  • Yeah it's called job security! Get out of the dealerships and go to an independent garage! FAST!
  • If it cranks but won't start, try a control module which is in the distributor.. The Standard brand ignition numbers run like LX301, LX 315 etc. Go to a parts house and have them look it up.
  • Join the club! I'm struggling to get this car to 180K with the second engine! Struts went, 3 of the 4 power windows don't work right sometimes, had more brake problems with this 85 Deville than with all my other cars I've owned combined!
  • Had you been to the dealer prior to these occurrences? If so, they might have tampered with the car. It's just one of the horror stories I've heard. The dealerships make more money in the garage dept. than they do on car sales. The mechanics get paid for fixing cars whether they have something wrong with them or not. He doesn't get paid for standing around! Use dealers ONLY for warranty work and get a work order signed by service manager saying repairs will be made at no cost BEFORE you leave!
  • Does it turn over, but not catch? Did it die all of a sudden while it was running? It's probably the control module under the rotor in the distributor. It costs $75.00 at NAPA. It's easy to put in. The most important thing when removing the distributor cap is to mark the wires and draw a diagram so you can reattach the wires correctly!
  • Good question! I had to replace mine at 68,000. I'm struggling at 181,000 to keep this car going but all my Fords got 250,000 with one engine so I'll be damned if I get less with two!
  • kwanlkwanl Posts: 2
    I have a same problem with my 94 Cadillac Concourse. Exactly same !!! Please, let me know how to fix this problem when you fix it.
    So far I have replaced the fuel pump, filter, pressure check. They were not the problem..
    Please, I need help..

    Thank you.
This discussion has been closed.