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Chevrolet (Geo) Prizm



  • g56201g56201 Posts: 1
    can i swap a 97 prizm motor into a 98 prizm without a lot of changes?
  • I inherited a 1999 Chevrolet Prizm Base Model from my grandma when she stopped driving in the summer of 2008. At that time, it only had about 28,700 miles on it, and now it has over 39,800 miles on it.

    Here is my question: On September 12th, 2009, when I went to start it to go to work, it did nothing, the instrument panel lights came on (ie. Air Bag, Check Engine, Battery, etc). I turned the key back to "off" and then tried starting it again, and it started up fine. I had no more problems with it until the morning of September 30th. It did the same thing as it did on the 12th but it did something different, however. This time as I was turning the key back to "off" so I could try restarting it, it started to crank, then stopped. I then turned the key back to start and it started up fine.

    I decide then that after work that day, I would take it to the Chevrolet dealer where I have the routine maintenance completed at to have them look at it. They could not reproduce the problem.

    Does anybody know what could have caused that problem, or is it nothing to worry about?

    One other minor thing: Ever since I got the car, the seat belt light does not come one when the engine is started nor does the warning bell. The warning does work because when I open the door with the keys still in the ignition, the bell rings. I am just curious as to what the problem could be.

    One moire question just out of curiosity: The "starting noise" the engine makes when it's turning over, is that the starter making that noise, or is it the engine itself? I know that is a silly question, but it is just out of curiosity.

    The cars still runs great, I take it to the dealer for all the maintenance. The Chevrolet Prizm was and always will be a great car. Maybe someday, with everybody looking for more fuel-efficient cars nowadays, they will bring the Prizm back into production.

    Thanks for your help.
  • Turns out it was the starter shorting out.
  • keithh1keithh1 Posts: 12
    My son broke the driver's inside door handle on my Prizm. Apparently this is a very common occurrence so I thought I'd post my fix. What happens is the weak plastic posts that the pull handle is attached to, and pivots on, snap. So I drilled out what was left of the posts, top and bottom of the body that holds the pull handle, and replaced the two posts with a single 1/8"x1 1/2" (approx) bolt and nut. I had to dremel out the outside ends on both sides of the plastic holder so the nut head and the bolt head would fit, but it worked. I used a dab of superglue on the nut to make sure it wouldn't gradually work loose. I have pictures if anybody wants to see them. I already had the nut and bolt, so $0.00 fix. The local junkyards didn't have any Prizm door handles (all sold out). I could get a new one for only $10.95... but shipping was another $9.00... Anyway, I hope it holds up for another 11 years.
    1998 Chevy Prizm
  • I am looking for tail lights, hood etc. and not sure what other models if any interchange with this car. Appreciate any help on this.
  • This isn't something you can do by yourself, however if you go to a local auto parts store (Napa, Auto Zone, Advance Auto Parts, etc) they can hook up to the car's computer and find out what's wrong, as well as clear the codes so that your "check engine" light will turn off
  • If yours is a four-door sedan, you should also be interchangeable with the four-door Toyota Corolla. I cannot think of any others models off-hand, but that should get you started at least.
  • bm7yubm7yu Posts: 2
    I had my radio stolen out of my 1995 geo prizm, but the really unfortunate thing is that they ripped out the cup holder too. So, I'm looking to get a new one- I hear the corolla has the same interior, and would have the same cup holder. Is this true? I'm seeing a bunch of different looking ones on ebay- anyone happen to have a 1995 prizm they could take a picture of, so I could look at what exactly the cup holder looks like? One of those things you don't notice until it's gone...
  • bm7yubm7yu Posts: 2
    Thanks for the quick reply! Found one!
  • Your gasket between exhaust manifold and exhaust pipe is probably worn out.
    This gasket looks like a fat ring made of metal mesh. the part costs about 5$ at aftermarket store. I've replaced it on my brothers prizm.
  • It't not too hard.
    Remove two or three phillips screws that you see in the panel. Make sure you didn't miss any.
    Starting from the bottom pry the panel off and continue to pull toward your self holding the bottom portion of the panel. There are about 10 clips total that hold it located on sides. When the clips are off lift the panel up to pry off upper panel side.
    Disconnect by prying off a rod cable from the door handle.
  • This code set while driving. I had it pulled and reset by O'Reilly and it has yet to re-occur. Question is, can this be the gas cap on to loose? What else can cause this?
  • degitdegit Posts: 1
    Happy New Year everyone. I was wondering if anyone can help me with my dilemna. I have a 1995 Geo Prizm and the defrost button broke. This is the button that controls the air flow in the car so you can direct it to defrost the car windows etc.Can anyone tell me where I can purchase just this one part? :)
  • My fan control switch only works on the "HIGH" setting. Do I need to replace the switch or is there some type of relay that needs to be replaced, and if so where is it located?
  • my 98 prizm--in the freezing weather-right rear suspension locks up- won't bounce-boot on the strut is shot-but i never heard of a strut freezing up--bought the car this summer -no problem-the first time it happened a brought in the garage with heater on and it loosened up--worked fine for about a week-now its froze up again--i would think if the strut was bad and had water in it it would not work when thawed out--I noticed sway bar and other links--could it be something other than the strut-thanks
  • Hi,

    I would like to get my hands on the manual cause i am looking to fix a few things in my wife's old car.

  • My 2000 Prizm has a mysterious battery drain. The car starts fine for a couple of days then, the battery drains. My mechanic has tested the car up and down w/ no true diagnosis (tried disconnecting the radio, new battery, tested starter, alternator, etc...). Has anyone had similar problems w/a resolution? Thanks.
  • what year of toyota wheels will fit a 1997 prizm 14 inch,can,t seem to find stock wheels at a junk yard so that is why iam wounding

  • I have had (2) 94's and a 2001 Prizm. They all share the same wheel. I also had bought a set of wheels from a guy who took them off of a honda (not sure which model) but they fit fine. Prizm and Corolla are the same car, so no worries about interchangeability there either. Hope this helps
  • I have a 95 prizm that once up to operating temp it dies. I acts likea air or fuel issue. Any tips?
  • How do you know when you have enough transmission fluid as far as reading the
    dip stick. There are 4 notches on the stick.
  • 92passat92passat Posts: 2
    I have a 1994 Prizm. We just replaced the master cylinder and have been bleeding the brakes, but the pedal will not "come up"? Any suggestions. We did bleed the brakes according to the service manual.
  • ruddneckruddneck Posts: 23
    I need the shocks on my 2000 Prizm replaced, and the estimated labor alone was about $300. The mechanic said extra time was needed because the shocks were difficult to get to and the brake lines had to be moved to access them. I trust these folks but am still surprised at the cost. Any one else has a similar experience?

  • geobluegeoblue Posts: 71
    Hello ruddneck,

    Extra time is not needed because it is simpler to replace struts on your Prizm than most cars.The price does not seem to be too much if it is a busy shop.I had my Prizm two front struts, strut boots, strut mounts replaced, and I paid 330 in total for labor only since I brought my own parts.They charge extra labor when you bring your own parts, they do not want to lose from their parts sale. However if you have it replaced at Sears, Walmart or chains like these it will cost less than 150 for 2 struts (labor only).

    Corollas, Prizms are easiest cars for mechanics, most everything is easy to reach thanks to practical Japanese engineering.
  • ruddneckruddneck Posts: 23

    Thanks for the guidance!
  • mirde98mirde98 Posts: 95
    Hello there. I have a 2002 Chevrolet Prizm Lsi 1.8L VVTi 4AT with 124,000 miles on it. Bought it used last month, is in great shape for the age/mileage, i was reading the manual and nowhere says Timing Belt, i search online and in Wikipedia says my engine is all aluminum and has a timing chain instead. Does those need to be changed? How often? I also noticed that uses "Iridium" spark plugs and they should be changed at every 120k, are they expensive? I also have the driver side power window issue, goes down perfectly but sometimes doesn't wanna go back up. Maybe the switch module? :)
  • geobluegeoblue Posts: 71
    Yes, it has timing chain instead.They do not require replacement as far as I know, reading Haynes manual.Iridium spark plugs for your application can be bought from amazon or for cheaper than some other places. check your local auto parts stores too.But do get NGK or Denso (both made in Japan, OEM plugs) brand only, not any other brand.It does not have to be iridium, if it is iridium you do not have to change as often as 30-40K miles with regular plugs. ?ie=UTF8&n=15684181&s=automotive&carId=029 for around 8 dollars per spark plug ss_5?ie=UTF8&n=15684181&s=automotive&carId=029 7.50 per plug _14?ie=UTF8&n=15684181&s=automotive&carId=029 9.55

    If you get it directly from amazon you can get free shipping because 4 plugs cost more than 25 dollars.

    Check your oil level often because earlier versions of Chevy Prizms and Toyota Corollas (1998-2002) are afflicted with oil consumption problem.

    I can check the manual for power window issue later.
  • mirde98mirde98 Posts: 95
    Thanks alot! I went to auto discount got NGK Iridium plugs. New air filter. And Prestone GM DexCool coolant (the red one), flushed the radiator, oil was changed last week. Runs like a champ now! Thanks again for the help!
  • mirde98mirde98 Posts: 95
    My 02 Prizm Lsi has the check engine light on.
    (1) I took it to Auto discount for free scanning, came up as HVAC/Emission, he said most likely the gas cap. Got new one for 10 buck. Reset code.
    (2) 2 days later check engine light again. Got it scanned again, same code, the other guy said O2 sensor, reset code.
    (3) 3 days later Check engine light on again, Autozone guy said could be the canister or a hose.
    (4) Took it for a 4th mechanic who after i explained everything he told me "Not to worry, that would not affect my car, would be a waste of time and money to search for the possible reason, to put a tape or sticker on top of the gauge cluster plastic and forget about the check engine light.
    HELP!!!!! :confuse:
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