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Pontiac Bonneville General Maintenance and Repair



  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America: I70 & I75Posts: 18,046
    I would change the fuel filter, just in case what you suggest happened. But there's a sock over the intake in the tank that catches a lot of stuff. Has the tank had enough fuel put in to prime it? Running low may have overheated the pump; the gasoline serves to cool it.

    The access is easy. It is a plate on the front of the trunk floor. The pump and intake along with float come out in a geometry puzzle type of movement. There are videos on replacing the thing on Utube. Be sure to get a new seal from a GM dealer based on what people say. If you take it out, I'd suggest a delco replacement. Others have luck with and bad luck with other brands.

    Does the pump run when the key is turned on?

    Do you have a fuel pressure gauge to test the pressure?
  • dmg24dmg24 Posts: 4
    Thanks for the help. The pump runs with the key on, as I have tried to "prime" it by letting it kick on for a second or two before I actually try to start it.

    It has about 4 gallons of gas in it now, and I'm not sure if that is enough or not. And no, I do not have a fuel pressure guage.

    Is the fuel filter located along the rail close to the tank? I'm going to try that first, and if that isn't it, I'll replace the pump with a Delco. Thanks for your help.
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America: I70 & I75Posts: 18,046
    I just suggest looking underneath to see where the tubes go that leave the tank. I don't know on which side the fuel filter is.

    I'd beg, borrow, buy a pressure gauge just to check. The pressure should be in the 40s but I'm not sure how high.

    Try turning key on for 3 seconds, then off, then on for 3, etc. On the motor is a Schraeder valve that you can press in to check for fuel pressure even without a gauge. Put a towel over the spray direction. Do not do with a hot motor or cigarette, etc. That would check for fuel pressure, but it might be 35 instead of 42 or whatever is required at the and look like a healthy pressure.
  • dmg24dmg24 Posts: 4
    I'm not much of a motorhead, but I have a friend coming to help me tomorrow. I'll try to get a fuel pressure gauge before then. Where is the Schraeder valve on the engine? I don't have the car here so I can't go outside and look at it. I'll get my son to try turning the key on for 3 seconds a few times before starting it, like you suggest. Again, thanks for all the help.
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America: I70 & I75Posts: 18,046
    Above the thermostat housing, up on the fuel rail, is a small canister about the size of 35 mm film container. It has a valve on it covered by a plastic cap like a tire valve cap. There you are. Right front upper corner of motor (facing the motor).
  • dmg24dmg24 Posts: 4
    IT'S FIXED!!! I got my son to go out and do the 3 second thing a few times and it started right up!!! Thank you so much for the help! Also, I found a couple of videos on youtube that helped me at least know what the Shraeder valve looks like(along with your help). This forum is awesome. Wish I could buy you a beer or two for saving me some cash. Thanks again.
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America: I70 & I75Posts: 18,046
    > buy you a beer or two for saving me some cash

    >buy you a beer or two for saving me some cash

    Errr, let me give you my address. Grin.

    Thanks for coming back; sometimes people forget to do that. It helps me and helps others. Remember don't run fuel low. I keep above 3/8. Sometimes kids are bad about driving on fumes to not put money into their fuel tank.

    for others following this here are three videos showing how to replace fuel pump and sender (gauge sender). This guy is actually repairing the gauge part on the fuel pump which sometimes wore and didn't make good contact. But the videos are GREAT!
  • Karen_CMKaren_CM Posts: 5,020
    Nice job and thanks for being helpful to others! :D

    Community Manager If you have any questions or concerns about the Forums, send me an email,, or click on my screen name to send a personal message.

  • My trunk "opener" has snapped broken and I cannot find a replacement.
    It is a long metal torsion rod that is installed somehow between the trunk hinges and it helps to open the trunk by twisting itself.
    So now I have to lift all the trunk weight by myself. It is a nice workout but not as nice when your hands are full of shopping bags.
    Does anyone know how to properly call this part? Everybody calls it different names online, and I am not sure what to search for on car-parts websites.
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America: I70 & I75Posts: 18,046
    A thought is if both pieces are there, you might have the two welded back together. I've read of someone doing that with a similar setup on an earlier year. I don't know if they can be welded in the car with the tension off the end.

    The rods are available from with right or left and one is $14 andother $21 plus shipping. I don't know which is which.

    Removing them says you remove the C pillar trim snaps off, remove the rear deck under the window and then can remove the bolts for the hinge. The trunk lide has to be supported...

    The piece is a torque rod.
    A local recycler may be able to pull one out for you. Recycler means junkyard. :grin.

    I'll check the 98 Factory service manual for LeSabre to see if that's the removal technique but that will be tomorrow. I have a ballgame tonight.
  • Thanks for your suggestions. Unfortunately, welding doesn't seem to be an option. The rod is made of hardened steel. I talked to my mechanic, and he said that it is likely to break again if we try to weld the pieces together.
    I also checked 2 junkyards nearby and they do not have it.

    As for the "torque rod", this is not it. The one I need is located kind of parallel to the torque rod. It is a one-piece 1/3"-thick rod with some bends at the ends, and a rubberlike sleeve in the middle.

    I checked Chilton repair manual for 86-99 GM cars and it only explains how to remove the trunk lid, but does not go any further.

    From your experience, does it necessarily have to be the part from '96 Bonneville, or the one from LeSabre or Olds could fit?
  • I would like to retract my last posting.
    You were right. It is the torque rod. I got it from The problem is that their illustration was very confusing and did not show the rod the way it is. It shows only one part, where in fact there are two rods.

    Thank you so much.

    P.S. It is weird but I went to about 10 junkyards before finding it online, and nobody had it. I guess they just did not want to bother going and removing it from a salvaged car. In fact, one junkyard said they might have had it, but if they did, it would cost $50, which is twice what I paid for the new one.
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America: I70 & I75Posts: 18,046
    I appreciate your apologizing. But I am wrong on occasion also. I learn a lot from these forums. I appreciate even more your coming back to tell others what you learned and where you got the part.

    The junkyards may not want to remove the old rods because I think it requires taking off the trunk lid and removing the back shelf inside the car--if I understood my service manual correctly. It's been a while since I looked that up in my 98 service manual so I again may be wrong. To take off the rear package deck you pop off the two covers on the side panels (C-pillar) and take out the back seat to get at the bolts. Probably not a big job, just irritating.

    You may be able to get it replaced without doing all that...
  • I replaced it at a shop. And, fortunately, we did not have to go through all that routine that you described. Maybe it was not the most proper way, but the mechanic just unscrewed one bolt securing the hinge to the body from inside the trunk, while I was supporting the trunk lid, and then the hinge lowered a bit so, that we were able to insert the loop-shaped end of the rod into position. After that he screwed the hinge back on.
    Then he twisted the other end of the rod with a metal pipe and secured it in a groove on the other hinge. The whole operation took about 15 minutes, but it requires at least 2 people (one to do the job, and the other to support the lid), and some extra tools.
  • One more quick question for you, experts.
    My belt has been making some chirping noise for a while. Not constantly, mostly when it was cold and humid outside, and usually the noise disappeared after the engine was hot.
    Several people told me that if you put a little lubricant on the belt, it is O'K, and it helped to eliminate the noise for some time.
    Last time I went to my mechanic, he sprayed the belt with WD40 (maybe a little too much), and it helped with the noise for several hours, but now the noise is back and it gets worse when I hit the gas.
    Otherwise the belt seems to be good, no cracks or wear, I've had it replaced maybe 3 years ago, and only added about 10-15 kMiles during this time.

    Is it time to replace the belt, or do I have other options, like degreasing it or something?
  • subie956subie956 Posts: 1
    I have a Pontiac Bonneville 2000 sle, It seems to be pulling to the left a bit. I am hearing different reports on certain pontiacs that need a certain style of alignment. A regular alignemnt and some vehicles need a more indept alignment. Does this style pontiac require such an alignment? Thanks
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America: I70 & I75Posts: 18,046
    Did the WD40 treatment change the noise when the car was started cold?

    I don't recommend putting anything, anything on the belts. Your problem is how to remove the lubricant that's now on the belt?

    My first check would be if the belt is causing the noise or if it's an idle pulley. Or perhaps a water pump starting to make noise.

    The real test there is when the car makes the noise, such as cold, take off the belt and and manually rotate various pulleys to see if they make any noise, have any looseness or wobble.

    Then spray with a water bottle or a plant misting bottle to see if the belt makes a noise when water is put on it as the car is started COLD.

    As I've indicated, I suspect something else other than the belt unless it's an inexpensive belt and there's something about how they're made that they're prone to noise. The water test can determine if the problem is the belt or it's a rotating part that makes a noise cold and that will continue even with water squirted on the belt.
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America: I70 & I75Posts: 18,046

    First, your tires. How long have they been on the car in miles? Have they been rotated correctly every 6-8000 miles? Move the right and left front tires on the car to the opposite side and see if the pull moves with the tire change?

    Then it's time to start checking alignment if the tires aren't causing the problem with a bad belt in one causing a lead.

    The alignment needs to be spot on to the exact recommended setting. You don't want one of the fast food places where they determine the setting is within specs therefore they don't put it to the ideal. You're paying to align and you expect a correct, full alignment.

    A good shop should check the parts in the steering and suspension. In some salty areas a few H-bodies have had a toe-in adjustable link on the _rear_ suspension break, but people usually find the car feeling floppy over bumps because of the lack of control on the toe-in for the rear.
  • Eventually it turned out to be only the belt problem.
    I tried removing the lubricants from the belt with a coarse brush, then windex and bounty, while the engine was idling. Actually it eliminated the noise for a while, but not for long and then it came back only worse.
    Then, one morning I started the engine and while starting it made some snapping sounds. I drove straight to my mechanic and on the way there the engine started making continuous rattling noise, like the belt fibers were breaking and beating around. However, when I got to the shop and we removed the belt, it looked absolutely perfect, without any cracks or excessive wear.
    Anyway, we replaced it and since then the engine runs smoothly without any noise.

    Moreover, I just made two round trips to Cape Cod (1200 miles totally) in a week recently and noticed that my gas-mileage improved significantly. If previously it was making 18-19 highway mpg, now it makes 27-28 mpg. Can it be related to a new belt?
  • jlbpajlbpa Posts: 1
    I'm trying to replace the outer boot on a 90 bonneville but it's not obvious to me how to get the joint separated from the axle so I can slide the new boot on. I was expecting to see some sort of clip but I don't see one. I've read and seen on the internet that some joints are removed from the axle by whacking it with a hammer in order to overcome a "circlip" . Is that what I must do.....force the joint from the axle? Or is there a snap clip some where that I need to remove with snap ring pliers????

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