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Buick Park Avenue Engine Problems



  • jrackleyjrackley Posts: 3
    i have 98 park avenue. my thermostate stuck. took guts out. put regular water in radiator to get it home. changed thermostate and drove it down the road temp gauge got to 207 degrees that was as high as it got. it cut off and would not crank back up. changed battery. it started but when i cut it back off it had hard time starting again. I drained water and put 50/50 mixture of dex-cool and water.But now it sounds like rod is knocking did just the water cause that much of a problem
  • jrackleyjrackley Posts: 3
    it is making a horrible noise do you think it messed up the bearing on the crankshaft.
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America: I70 & I75Posts: 18,052
    Running hot you may have damaged a head gasket or head. Look at the dip stick to see if the oil shows a milky color like a chocolate shake? If so you have coolant in the oil and that is poison to bearings. It deteriorates them fast chemically.

    You are going to have to find out what's happening. I suppose it's possible the intake manifold just decided to leak at the time of overheating. And that can put coolant into the cylinders and oil.

    If you have a knocking, your motor may be past tense already--not to scare you too much.
  • Actually I have a two part question. The first is I bought my 96 park ave ultra used with about 125,000 mi. I have had to add coolant to the overflow container three times in the five months since I bought the car. In total it comes to about two and a half gallons of coolant. I have never seen this in any car I have ever owned. the second issue I have is on cold mornings the transmission is very sluggish even after letting the vehicle warm up for approximately ten minutes.I have had the transmission flushed and refilled. If I shut the engine off and wait a couple of minutes then restart the engine it runs normally. Any ideas what is going on?
  • jonifjonif Posts: 1
    I have a 2001 Park Avenue Sedan, 3800 Series II V6, Transmission 4 speed electronic. with Prestige Option Package. One owner, about 54,000 miles. Transmission failed/replaced under warranty at 26K. No other problems. I drove it into the driveway last night after running errands for about an hour. Went out to pull in the garage and it will not start. One click I heard. Then nothing. Gauges were moving without key in it! Battery dead overnight. Recharged. Checked all 4 fuse boxes. Tried starting with and without battery charger on it; and bypassed battery; still just a click and then the car is DEAD. Have tried both key fobs; neither will start it. Was running FINE before this. Have read all forum posts, but don't see a fix. Any ideas? As the seat was returning to memory position it just stopped and the car would not start. Could it be a short somewhere? Totally mystified. Want to avoid towing it to a dealer if possible. No lights inside and I know of no way to check codes. It won't jump start either.
  • bowfanbowfan Posts: 55
    I know it's late to reply to your questions, but did you get this resolved? and if so what did it take?

    When my 98 had it's last plenum failure, I would attempt to crank it with no luck, and after I turned my key off the gauges would jump up and down for a second or two. After pulling the plugs, I tried the starter again with the same results - no crank even with a jump. I then put a breaker bar / socket on the end of the engine to make sure it would turn over and it did. I then pulled the two starter bolts, and backed the starter out and then put it back in place and it would then crank again. I'm just guessing that the solenoid or bendix was stuck. I believe what happened was the starter may have jammed against the ring gear in the extended position, draining the battery.. but that's just a guess. :confuse: Ended up with a weakened battery that had to be replaced, which again makes me think something was shorting it out with lots of amperage ability like a starter.

    Would like to know how your's went, Joni. I'm guessing starter related issue. Your answer may help someone who reads these forums in the future. ;)
  • rolexy68rolexy68 Posts: 2
    I have an issue with my 2001 Park Ave. Cold start is sluggish and hot start is sometimes real sluggish. I have an rear seal oil leak and a tranny cooler line leak, not major ones.
    I'm thinking it may be the fuel pump? Any other thoughts, anyone had similar issues with the 3800 engine.
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America: I70 & I75Posts: 18,052
    At first by "sluggist" I thought you might mean the cranking speed of the starter. But you suggested fuel pump, so I infer it may be cranking but not firing quickly.

    Check the FPR (fuel pressure regulator). It looks like a top hot with the fuel line coming into it and it sits on the fuel rail on the front of the motor. Another line goes to the front of the throttle body; it's a vacuum line. Pull off the vacuum line at the FPR and see if there's liquid fuel in it. There shouldn't be. The FPR still could be defective.

    Also try turning the key to ON without cranking after the car sits overnight. Then to OFF and back to ON for a few seconds. You'll hear the fuel pump run for about 2 seconds and turn off. That's what it's supposesd to do to prime the pressure if there's been a drop in the line pressure while standing. Do that a total of 3 times. On the third time crank the motor and see if it starts quicker. That could indicate the pressure valve that doesn't let fuel back into tank is leaking and draining the pressure.

    Unless the tank has been run low on fuel a lot, below quarter regularly, the chances of a pump failure as low.

    Report back with any observations you make for me.
  • rolexy68rolexy68 Posts: 2
    I tried that and it does seem to start quicker. I wonder, is it fairly simple to change the FPR myself or is it a simple, cheap fix.
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America: I70 & I75Posts: 18,052
    The multiple key turns before starting just pumps up the pressure in the line from the tank. I do not know if the FPR is involved in that. It could be deterioration in the pressure holding valve on the fuel pump in the tank that retains fuel pressure in the line after it's turned off.

    The FPR does sometimes get replaced even if it's not leaking fuel into the vacuum line controlling it. But I'd want to know it's bad before doing that. It can be replaced at home if you have some mechanical skills.
  • wornslickwornslick Posts: 6
    I just purchased a 2000 Park Avenue. The independent dealer I bought the car from said that they were having problems with the car starting and that he put a new fuel pump on the car. Since I have been driving it on the 2nd day the service engine soon light has came on and the car will act like it is not getting enough fuel while being started, if you press the gas pedal while this is happening the car runs fine. Sometimes you can feel the car revving the engine up by itself. Also somtimes the car starts fine. I am taking the car back to him Sat. but was wondering if anyone had an idea what is causing this. The car has 93000 miles on it. There is no missing in the engine and the car drives great. Thanks,

  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America: I70 & I75Posts: 18,052
    I would clean the MAF sensor, check carbon on the IAC to see if it's gunked up. Both of these can be done while removing the throttle body to clean the gunk that flashes back and gunks up these things with a carbon goo.

    Also I'd check the fuel pressure regulator FPR. There were recalls on some of those and they apparently do fail from the chatter I read on several forums about 3800 motors in H bodies. You can check one way for failure of FPR by pulling off the vacuum line from the FPR and looking for gasoline leaking into it. It sits right along the front of the fuel rail for the injectors and has a fuel line to it and a single vacuum line.

    You can also check for bleedback of pressure into the fuel tank (or through a rusty fuel line) by turning the key to ON and then off afteer 3 seconds when the fuel pump turns off; repeat two times. Then start the car. This pumps up the pressure.
  • wornslickwornslick Posts: 6
    Thank You imidazol97. I will try the starting procedure this morning. The rest of the info I will talk to the dealer about. Would any of this show up in the codes that are now stored in the computer?
  • wornslickwornslick Posts: 6
    Went to my local garage today and had them check the codes. It had 6 P0446A codes. Also 1 B 1001 ansd 1 C 1245. I found out that the first one has to do with the fuel system. Maybe this could be the problem.
  • rtjrrtjr Posts: 4
    I have a 94 park avenue. It started missing when you are driving it. It slows down and when you give it more gas it gets slower. Pulling back on the pedal speeds it up a certain amount, but it still won't hardly go. Sometimes when it has set a while, it does fine with no problems, acceleration is fine. But now it has started missing again. This time the engine light came on. It barely made it home and went dead. I can't get it started now. It will start a few seconds when you pump the accelerator, then it goes dead. If you hold the starter in and keep pumping, it acts like it is backfiring while it trying to start. Could this just be a fuel filter? The pump is in the gas tank and looks difficult to take off.
    Thank you
  • Well here goes. Last friday went to go to work and go wouldn't start, would turn over but not fire off. Listened for fuel pump and heard nothing. Just replaced fuel pump and low an behold it still wont start. got 45psi of fuel pressure and not running. The security light has been on for about 4 weeks now and ran fine. Even switched keys with wife and car ran fine but light stayed on. thinking ignition cylinder and switch bad. key also not worn down visually but no way to really tell. not sure how to check resistance on key either. PLEASE HELP!!!!
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America: I70 & I75Posts: 18,052
    If the car cranks, the problem is not the VATS system. VATS turns off the starter relay inside the car and turns off the injectors when it doesn't read the right resistance.

    You don't say what year your car is.

    The security light may be something related to an intrusion sensor. The trunk is a common problem. Disconnect the wire to the latch assembly for the theft sensor.

    a first check is the battery cables. If there are two or more cables on the positive, separate them and check inside the plastic by cutting back looking for corrosion. Funny things happen when corrosion builds up inside and affects the connections. Also check connections at front of ESC plate under the coils.
  • Took it to shop today after trying that to no avail. She turns over well but wont start, thinking that there might be a wire in steering column pinched up but not too sure. Ive never been much of an electrician (haha). onna be ready to drop and cough soon too.
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America: I70 & I75Posts: 18,052
    Basics are pretty easy. If it turns over, pull off a spark plug wire and lay it on the grounded metal of the engine, or insert an old plug and lay it on the motor. You'll hear and see the spark. No spark, then you're trouble shooting the electrical system.

    No fuel to the cylinders as evidenced by gas smell in the exhaust pipe after cranking... check injectors for pulse--put in a 194 type light bulb by straightening the wires to check for electrical pulses. Other obvious check is for fuel pump running at all; but it may be giving low fuel pressure.
  • Well now car is fixed, had a bad fuel pump , crank sensor , ignition cpntrol modules and battery. Now I have to get outta hospital to pay it off. Always one thing or another ya know Also had a bad wiring in key clyinder so replaced that too
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