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Pontiac Bonneville General Maintenance and Repair



  • mlm4mlm4 Posts: 401
    I think your dealer just ordered another panel (maybe the one in your car is damaged). There is also a service bulletin on how to secure the panel better.

    As for the column-mounted shift lever blocking the radio and/or climate controls, that's a problem I've seen in lots of cars and trucks, present and past, some worse than others. Most Bonnevilles have the console shifter. Just as bad as the shifter blocking the radio is the steering wheel blocking the odometer (at least from my seating position). It's just one of those details that make the Bonneville just less than great.
  • Problem with engine is that it stumbles on acceleration during driving, almost hesitating with no power. Any advice would be appreciated, thanks.

    1990 Bonneville SSE
    350,000 km
  • I was having that problem with my 95 SE in February of this year. On the advice of people at this forum I changed all the spark plug wires. That did the trick (so far). There's quite a few posts in this forum that might cover your problem.
  • Ok, seems like the problem was a cracked wire for most part as well as the cam sensor magnet... the code was 41 which is for the sensor but does not tell you it's the magnet... the mechanic also suggested that the timing chain be replaced since the car had high km's and that I'm going to keep it... total with parts and 4 hours labor was $750...oh well, now it's good to go for a while (I hope), thanks.
  • I have a 94 Bonneville w/3.8 litre non-supercharged engine w/109,000 miles on it. In recent weeks the "Service Engine Soon" light has come on at times and then gone off. My local mechanic checked the trouble codes and it showed a problem with the EGR Valve system. He said that the tube leading from the manifold to the valve can get clogged up with carbon and may need cleaning out. He said if I need a new EGR valve that it would be about $300.00. Cleaning the system out to see if that fixes the problem would be about $100.00. It involves removing the throttle body and some other hardware.

    Is this something I could do myself or is this better left to him? Has anyone else had experience with this? Car has run a little rough at times. I've replced plugs and checked all vacuum lines. The only other code he got was for the cruise control position sensor. Cruise has not worked for months. Does anyone know whether the servo unit is repairable or that I just need to buy a new one?

  • New to the board. have a 99 SE. Have read many of the messages that seem related to my problem. I see people going through multiple alternators and before I start down that path am wondering if anyone has found a more direct solution that addresses why multiple alternators are failing. I read several posts where people have replaced alternators only to have the car completely die shortly after. Am worried about that result.

    My problem is that the car has become noticeably somewhat harder to start. Still starts after it makes a little effort (2 to 3 seconds) but just a short while ago would fire up at the twist of the key.

    At this same time I have noticed that after I drive for about two to three minutes, I will be stopped at a light (Same ones, either near my house on my way to work or near my office on my way home.), and the tach will drop to 0 for a split second as if the car has died and then surge over 1500 for a second as if the ignition switch has been turned on. The car tries to lunge forward but luckily my foot is firmly planted on the brake (and I don't tailgate!). This has happened about a half a dozen times over the last month. Then yesterday the car died as I pulled on to a freeway on ramp by my office. I pulled it over and it started back up, again with a couple of seconds of effort, not the flip of the wrist I had been used to. In this same time frame I have noticed some minor sputtering and surging while cruising down the highway.

    I get no check engine lights and my dash amp meter reads as it always has. Is this an alternator going bad? What else should I be looking at?
  • When I had a surging problem it turned out to be the transmission. It felt like the tranny was searching for the gear during acceleration, and then it would surge. If you look through the past posts, you'll see that the transmission has been somewhat problematic with this car. Hopefully you're still under warranty.
  • Thanks, I had a system check run today and the electrical and charging were OK. Thought it might be the throttle position sensor but that checked out ok too.

    This doesn't seem like a tranny problem, but I could be wrong. Seems more like some type of sensor or something. Doesn't feel like its searching for gears. I'm thinking i'll turn my search to the fuel, air, emissions sensors(?)

    Of course it's out of warranty now at almost 44K so I'm hoping its not the tranny. I plan to have that serviced at 50K so I'm hoping I can find a simpler solution before then.
  • I've seen a lot of posts about intake manifolds made of composite material and subsequent problems with coolant in the cylinders (shesfyne I read the horror story in the headgasket problems board) but the problems look like they occur on 97's and older. Is this still a problem for 99's or was the manifold issue addressed by then?
  • . Is this still a problem for 99's or was the manifold issue addressed by then?

    I went back and looked at that petition. I noticed that it appears to run through the years 95-2000. So I'm guessing that no, the problem hasn't been resolved.
    But, the part they are using for the repair is metal, not plastic. So for your 700 bucks it looks like you get the part that was meant to be on there in the first place.
  • I have replaced the left side outer tierod end. It was definitely worn out at under 40,000 miles. Pontiac changed these production parts in '99, 2000, and '01, which tells me they can't get 'em right. That took the slop out, and it worked great for 200 miles. Now the steering grabs and jerks, especially when turning left. There are no obvious loose or worn or broken components in the whole front assembly. Is there any effective way to lubricate the steering knuckles on the steering wheel shaft above the rack. How about lubing the rack and pinion. It feels like something needs lubed. What can I do to make this steer smoother? I am not aware of a single grease zerk on the whole car. This car was priced like a BMW and built with Sunfire parts.
  • alcanalcan Posts: 2,550
    Disconnect the tie rods and rotate the steering knuckles/struts left to right. Any bind indicates a worn upper strut bearing. Check the condition of the serpentine belt and tensioner. The belt might be slipping. Check the condition of the p.s. fluid. If it's turning black there's oxidized aluminum particles in the fluid from the rack and pinion's valve housing, requiring r&p replacement.
  • I just bought a 96 Bonneville and the drivers side lower seat belt retractor does not work well. What is the warranty on Seat belts? I heard it ws lifetime!!
  • mlm4mlm4 Posts: 401
    I have the same problem with the steering on my 2000 SSEi, which still has less than 10,000 miles on it. I notice it on low-speed maneuvers, such as in parking lots or backing out of my driveway. I'm also experiencing the steering wheel shake and it seems like the tires are flat-spotted but warming them up doesn't improve things. I'm starting to wonder if the tires are the problem (factory Goodyear Eagle RS/A).
  • My EGR woes continue. Local shop recommended cleaning all the passages feeding the EGR valve on my 94 Bonneville to see if that would fix the problem of the Service Engine Soon lite on. Code reader was reading and EGR problem. Had passage cleaning done Tuesday for $100.00. Light back on yesterday!!!. New digital GM EGR valve and gasket is about $140.00 from AutoZone or Advance Auto. Just as a last gasp attempt, can the valve be dissassembled and cleaned with something soft like a toothbrush to see if by chance that might do it? Maybe some carbon trash inside the valve? If so, what and how do I clean it with. Any tricks or cautions. It's not working right now so I figure I don't have much to lose as I'll be buying a new valve anyway.

    Any thoughts.
  • Has anyone had significant shrinkage of the Bonneville weatherstripping? Mine appear to have pulled away from the upper right hand corner of the door jam by about 1 inch - on all 4 doors. This has been pointed out to me in the process of trying to source the water leaking in under the carpet. My Bonneville is a '93.

    I appreciate your comments.
  • I recently noticed on my 2001 ssei that the trans. appears to shift into the lock mode at low speed ie. the tac indicates about 11-1200 rpm and at that low rpm the car will labor. It always did do that since new to some degree but appears to be more frequently. Is this normal.
  • Hi: Got a 2002 Bonnie Se brand new on my fourth, guess the laws of average caught up with me cause I never had problems with the other three. Anyway why should my trunk leak in heavy rain? not the whole thing just the right side of it. In love with my dealer, so I think I'll ask him to check the weather striping? Son took it in 2 weeks ago but they couldn't find the problem.
  • mfahey1mfahey1 Posts: 419
    Fisher Body has lost a lot of its ability to deliver a good product, IMO. My 2000 is due to go in shortly for the 3rd time for the trunk leaking and it turns out, it is a very common problem with these cars. I mean, how hard can it be to keep water out of a trunk after building cars for close to a century? This time, I'm going to tell the dealer to not give it back until they have actually tested it, not just think they fixed it. GM has identified 4 different areas that can be causing the leak so be persistent with the dealer and don't let them tell you it is fixed unless they have tested it for themselves. Absolutely be sure to check the spare tire well because the water collects there.
  • The remote transmitters on my 94 Bonneville are dying. I think the operational guts are still good but since I won't pay GM $75.00/transmitter, I plan to buy an aftermarket keyless entry system. Can anyone tell me where the receiver module is located in the car so I can just hook the new one up at the old location instead of having to trace wires?


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