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Buick Lucerne Vibration Problems

wayne55wayne55 Posts: 7
edited April 2018 in Buick
I purchased an 06 CXL in mid June. There is currently 5400 miles on it. The car is a dream with the exception of an annoying vibration between 50 and 63 mph. The dealer has put 3 different sets of wheels and tires on this car and the problem is still there. Has anybody else had this problem and know what the fix might be?


  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America I70 & I75 Posts: 23,705
    What brands were the tires? I'm always partial to Michelins for round-rolling, balanced tires that stay balanced.

    The fact they're tried several other wheels from other cars makes it sound like something else. Did the other cars have a vibration when the wheels, yours or the originals, were on that vehicle.

    I'd say it's a driveshaft or something. Call in the factory rep or try a different dealer.

    2015 Cruze 2LT, 2014 Malibu 2LT, 2008 Cobalt 2LT

  • wayne55wayne55 Posts: 7
    Yes you are right. I prefer Michelins as well. The factory tire on this car is Continental. I am not sure about the others cars. I'll ask. I am 1 hour from my dealer nad 2 hours to the next dealer. I live way up North. Maybe when i get back to California I will see a dealer there. Thanks for your input.
  • b88lazerb88lazer Posts: 21
    A driveshaft in a FWD Lucerne?
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America I70 & I75 Posts: 23,705
    Yeah. Whatever the shafts are called with the CV joints in them these days.

    2015 Cruze 2LT, 2014 Malibu 2LT, 2008 Cobalt 2LT

  • kkrinnkkrinn Posts: 14
    Yeah, I was hoping my new Lucerne CXL came with Michelins, but it came with Continentals. They're fine, though. Love the car!
  • I just purchased an '06 CXL and I'm having the same trouble with tire vibration at highway speed. I also notice it feeling "bumpy" at slower speeds. Seems like the tires pick up every little road imperfection. Took it to the dealer last night - rebalanced the front tires - actually feels worse. The vibration is now noticeable at 40mph and up. Have you had any luck getting this resolved?
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America I70 & I75 Posts: 23,705
    Did they use the Hunter 9700 Road Force balancer that corrects for uneven rolling heights in the tires?

    Another possibility is checking alignment on all four wheels and putting it dead on center of each; none of this "It's within the tolerance range so we're not going to change it." My 03 LeSabre had toe in error on rear wheels for 6000 miles before dealer did that after rebalancing wheels twice and driving the car on a nicely repaved asphalt road that was smooth with a vibration analyzer hooked up tot he seat and to the steering column.

    What brand of tires does the problem car have on it? Michelins are the best for quality and roundness.

    2015 Cruze 2LT, 2014 Malibu 2LT, 2008 Cobalt 2LT

  • It came with Continentals on it. I've never had those - prefer Michelins also. They told us that Buick wrote the specs for this particular tire.

    I'm not sure what they used for balancing equipment --I will be calling the dealer again shortly so I will be sure to find out. Thanks for your help.
  • 62vetteefp62vetteefp Posts: 6,048
    GM always writes the specs for tires. GM has basically the same specs for all tires for balance, uniformity, etc. What is different, depending on the application, is ride, rolling resistance, life, etc. These are tuned using vehicles at the proving grounds. A Corvette has different requirements than the Lucerne for example.

    Michelin and Continental would have to meet the same specs for the Lucerne.
  • Understood -- the actual tire is not really in question (although I would choose Michelin any day) it is the vibration that's causing me problems.
  • 62vetteefp62vetteefp Posts: 6,048
    The tire could still be the issue, do not get me wrong. GM has quality specs but parts may not always meet them. Best thing for your dealer to do is have you drive another Lucerne and you say this car does not have the same problem. Then switch the tires from car to car and redrive and see what happens.
  • Requesting to drive another Lucerne was actually going to be one of my next courses of action. I didn't really think about switching the tires and driving mine again. I'm actually waiting for the service manager to call me back so, we'll see what happens. Thanks
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America I70 & I75 Posts: 23,705
    If your dealer used a Hunter 9700 ask what the force amounts (they use pounds) were. My Michelins were under 10 pounds other than one that was 12. The maximum was something in th middle teens.

    As the tires rolled up toward 25 K miles they seemed to get more even. I suspect the crush in the sidewalls evens out as the tires roll that many miles.

    Early on in this GM was replacing tires on problem cars with Michelins. That was about the time I bought my LeSabre in Dec 02. That's why I'd still suggest Michelins. If they have a car on the lot they're willing to switch wheels with yours for a test, choose one that has Michelins.

    That's my opinion after owning Michelins since 1967.

    2015 Cruze 2LT, 2014 Malibu 2LT, 2008 Cobalt 2LT

  • I have driven a CXL and A CXS. While each felt a little different, I did notice that both picked up too many vibrations over some surfaces. My old Taurus wagon did a better job on the same surfaces. Perhaps it's the lower profile tires 55 and 50. I am interested in the Lucerne because of its interior comfort, but I want to drive again before buying. I wonder if the the base model with 60 series tires is smoother, albeit less sporty.
  • 62vetteefp62vetteefp Posts: 6,048
    Not sure I understand your question but the CXL has less "sporty" handling than the CXS which means that usually the CXL will have better impact harshsness and a more comfortable ride. One Caveat here is the new magnaride suspension on the CXS which is amazing the way it lets the car handle and a comfrotable ride.

    One note, my neighbor just bought a CXL/V8 and he loves the ride. He just got out of a SRX and is a lead foot but the car is making him very happy.
  • I bought the CX and am really glad that I did. I test drove both the CX and CXL more than once.

    It became clear to me that the CX was the kind of ride I
    prefer as it had the perfect balance between too firm and too soft. It better isolates you from road bumps and
    is a pleasure to drive. The CX has 16 inch tires that compliment this type of suspension. Buick calls this "Premium-Ride". I think of it as providing a "Luxury" ride for less than $ 26,000 MSRP.

    The "sportier" CXL does not give a harsh ride. It gives a slightly firmer ride and more road feel,with it's 17 inch tires and re-calibrated struts. Buick calls this "Ride and Handling." CXL offers more control so one can take exit ramps faster and practice accident avoidance maneuvers more often!

    Leather is not available in CX but that is ok with me because I hate leather.( I know some must have it)

    Leather cost about$1,000 more,(Hidden in the cost of CXL) Leather is hot in Summer and feels cold in Winter. Car makers must agree because options are readily available.

    Another $500 can be spent on heated seats to fix the cold Winter problem and another $500 can be spent on heated/cooled seats to fix the hot Summer problem! OR, just take the cloth seats that come with CX.

    Cloth is best described as neutral, not hot in in the Summer nor cold in Winter.

    I loaded my car with the 3 major option packages Lots of toys for less than $2200 additional. Dual-Zone auto climate control,theft alarm, "Rain-sense wipers etc.etc. add to the convience.

    Each of us have an opinion of what is the "best" ride. Some will loudly dissagre because they know what they like, I'm glad I chose Lucerne CX over the Toyata Avalon and Hyundai Azera. Now with 5 year 100,000 mile warranty it's even better.
  • capriracercapriracer Somewhere in the USPosts: 884
    This sounds like the tires have a flat spot from either shipping or storage on the dealer's lot. (The key to this diagnosis was that you could feel it at low speed.)

    Replacing the tires with anything that hasn't been mounted before will probably fix the problem.
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America I70 & I75 Posts: 23,705
    Doesn't that flatspotting smooth out after driving and warming up?

    I noticed my dealer drove my 03 Buick before rebalancing and that's in the TSB for the use of Hunter 9700 troubleshooting the out-of-round rolling.

    Too, my Michelin Symmetrys seemed to become smoother after 15000K or so. Do they tires "relax" or become softer and become more even in their crush around the circumference from the factory as they're used?

    2015 Cruze 2LT, 2014 Malibu 2LT, 2008 Cobalt 2LT

  • evandroevandro Posts: 1,108
    I'm afraid that GM hasn't rid its full-size platform of the susceptibility to tire roundness. I've experienced the same issue on my '02 Bonneville and I still live with it, though to mitigated by expensive tires.

    Those interested can follow my saga, going through 3 tire brands, starting here.

  • vic10vic10 Posts: 188
    Read some of the tire posts on the 300C page. That car (I own one) comes with the Conti Touring. Lots of complaints of noise, handling, alignment drifting as well as early wearout. Mine drives like the have flat spots for the first 2 -3 miles, regardless of outside temperature. Can't wait till I can justify replacing them.....
  • I have spent the last few weeks arguing with Continental about their tire (Touring) and the finally admitted that the tire has a vibration in it. They sent my dealer 4 new ones (not Touring) and I traded them in immediately for Michelins. It is an entirely different car (better). No road noise, no vibrations at any speed.
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America I70 & I75 Posts: 23,705
    Which Michelins did you put on?

    You reinforce my tenet that the quality of the tire makes a difference and Michelin usually has better quality for the rolling characteristic.

    2015 Cruze 2LT, 2014 Malibu 2LT, 2008 Cobalt 2LT

  • evandroevandro Posts: 1,108
    Which Michelins did you put on?

    FWIW, I put MXV4+ on my Bonneville, but its size is pretty rare: 235/55R17.
  • I am having the same problems with my Lucerne and thought it might be the tires. I just bought my car two weeks ago and had to have a new battery installed within the first two days. I also had to have the intermediate shaft replaced in the steering wheel as well as a shim, supposedly to stop the drifting to the right. I would like to know if anyone has heard noises coming from the fuel pump. Mine sounds like air escaping accompanied by a fuel line noise.
  • Here's the latest on the vibration issue my '06 Lucerne has been having. We have taken it to the dealer two more times - they rotated and rebalanced all of the tires. We took it on vacation and it rode horribly. We just took it back again, they let me drive another one to confirm that it does have a problem (which I already knew it did, they just are not interested in fixing it). They are trying to tell us now that it is a "drive line vibration" and they will need to contact GM to find out what to do about it. Anyone heard of this with a Lucerne? I really don't trust this service department!
  • 62vetteefp62vetteefp Posts: 6,048
    Very possible it is a driveline problem. Did they switch the tires/wheels with another car to see if the problem went away?
  • No. I practically begged them to fully check the tires and wheels but to my knowledge, the only thing they have done is balance and rotate. I noticed the vibration more and seemingly in the back of the car after they rotated --that's why I'm questioning driveline. They said rotating the tires just brought it out more but I'm not sure I understand why - shouldn't all four tires be the same?
  • 62vetteefp62vetteefp Posts: 6,048
    It is possible a different tire has different characteristics that would change the driveline vibration slightly. However I still would ask to try a known good set of tires/wheels on your car.
  • dmathews3dmathews3 Posts: 1,739
    I have test drove 2 Lucernes and neither one of them had the least bit of vibration as I have made a list of problems here and when the time comes to purchase my 07 you can bet I will go through it to make sure nothing is wrong.
  • evandroevandro Posts: 1,108
    My Bonneville was darn smooth when new too, but after a couple of thousand miles, the vibration started. Anyway, I told my whole saga about it below:

    Part 1
    Part 2
    Part 3
    Part 4

  • rake2rake2 Posts: 120
    How many times have you had it in for this problem? In many states, there are Lemon Laws that cover this. For instance, in Pennsylvania, after 3 attempts to fix the problem, if the problem exists then the car is considered a "lemon" and the manufacturer must replace it. Assuming, of course, that it's a serious problem and the problem first arose within 12 months or 12,000 miles, whichever comes first.
  • rake2rake2 Posts: 120
    Just thought of something. Is it possible that the torque on the lugnuts is off? I seem to recall my service manager indicating that such a scenario could have caused the "problem" when it felt like the rotors were metal on metal for me.
  • 62vetteefp62vetteefp Posts: 6,048
    Possible but it sounds like they have been rotated and hopefully the same mistorque was not repeated.
  • That's exactly what I was thinking. I have had it in three times and we're scheduled to take it in again tomorrow so they can start working on the driveline, which makes me very nervous because they don't seem to know anything. I'm not sure how "serious" the problem is but I figure we shouldn't have this much trouble with a brand new $31,000 car. I actually do live in Pennsylvania so you've just confirmed what I saw yesterday as far as the Lemon Law. Have you had first hand experience at using it? I hate to blame the car - it's great - I think it's the service people that are :lemon:'s
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America I70 & I75 Posts: 23,705
    Switch all four wheels with a car that drives without vibration after it's warmed up on the road.

    2015 Cruze 2LT, 2014 Malibu 2LT, 2008 Cobalt 2LT

  • rake2rake2 Posts: 120
    I once forced Chevy to buy back a Camaro w/ over 40,000 miles on it for all but $300 of the purchase price, plus another $10K in attorneys fees and costs. And it doesn't matter if it's a service problem, you go against the manufacturer, not the dealer.

    Double check the warranty info on the car, because there's probably a requirement to use a BBB forum, as I recall. If you have to go that route, BBB will send an independent expert to inspect the car, who may actually say it's a serious problem. Here's a website to look at on PA Lemon Law.

    Note that in the definitions sections, a "nonconformity" is defined as:

    "A defect or condition which substantially impairs the use, value or safety of a new motor vehicle and does not conform to the manufacturerÍs express warranty."

    Let me know if you have any questions about it.
  • Thanks for the info. Hopefully I won't have to go that route but it almost seems easier at this point. I am a bit concerned that they will not consider this a serious enough problem. Although, there is also something going on with the steering wheel -- feels wobbly when making turns or rounding bends. I'll see what happens after the service they do tomorrow. That will be the official third time it was in for the same thing.
  • rake2rake2 Posts: 120
    good luck with it. it really is a nice car when working properly.
  • Was it the intermediate shaft as it was in mine? Apparently GM has had problems with them including in the Cadillacs.
  • Are you referring to the steering issue? It's currently being serviced again so I don't know yet what explanation they'll give me this time. Do you know if there is a service bulletin out about that since it's a known problem? They told me last night that they are going to get GM involved since this is the third (actually fourth) time it's been in for the same thing (vibration). Twice for the steering. They said they hadn't even looked for service bulletins on it yet. Seems like that should have been one of the first things to do after it came back the second time.
  • Yes. I have a friend who works for a Cadillac dealership in the service department, and he said there has not been a bulletin issued. However, people have complained of the steering and how it feels. It is not a noise just a sensation. At the service department I go to, the service manager drove my car and tested the steering himself. He felt the same thing I did so they replaced the intermediate shaft. This was the second time I took it in for a steering problem.
  • Thanks, I'll pass that info. along to my service dept. It's hard to say what they're doing to my car -- GM gave them four bulletins to complete today. I hope they fix it this patience are wearing thin. Oh, just want to mention how much I'm enjoying the Chevy Cobalt rental/loaner I have... :( Thanks GM, appreciate the first class treatment.
  • evandroevandro Posts: 1,108
    Was it the intermediate shaft as it was in mine? Apparently GM has had problems with them including in the Cadillacs.

    Actually, the popping feeling and/or sound when turning the wheel has been an issue on so many GM mid-size and full-size platforms, from Chevy to Cadillac, that it's not funny anymore.

    BTW, have I said that I had my Bonneville serviced twice already to address this very same issue?

    GM has no fix, though there are plenty of TSBs about it. Even replacing the intermediate steering shaft doesn't solve it, it's a failed design. What others have found to work is to lube the steering shaft spline every couple of years or so. That is, you learn to live with it. :P

  • I agree with you. Thanks for the "lube" info. I am keeping track of all the complaints and helpful ways of solving various problems. As for the Continental Touring tires, I am still in the process of determining if they are causing my drifting problems, etc. Apparently, my dealer did not do a very good job at balancing the tires after putting the shim in. They said that they aligned it, etc. I had to take it to a tire place, and they found the problem. Since I have had it only three weeks, they are going to talk to the dealership and have them pay for it. Has anyone complained about the noise that the fuel pump makes?
  • dmathews3dmathews3 Posts: 1,739
    Why are you blaming GM for your loaner. That is the most stupid thing I have heard. What happened. Did Rick Wagner call your service guy and say if so and so comes in for repairs, stick it to him, give him a Yugo. Maybe you should blame your dealer as they are the one who gave you the car. They are just like every business, independantly owned. When I buy a car and take it in for repairs I ask then demand a vehicle that is comparable to what I bought. Your beef is with your dealer.
  • I put on MXV4. I have just finished a 3000 mile road trip in the last 2 weeks and even though the car is much better with the new tires it is still not 100 percent. My wife's Envoy is smoother at 55 to 65 than the Buick. At 80 mph this car is excellent. However, it still drifts right at any speed and it has developed rattles all of a sudden from the rear. I am taking it into a dealer next week. I'll keep you posted.
  • jbrichjbrich Posts: 23
    Atually, it is and isn't the dealer's fault and it IS partly GM's fault. The dealer promised a loaner from their lot but it wasn't back in time so they arranged for an Enterprise loaner. GM will reimburse the rental car company through their warranty program but ONLY IF THEY RENT A GM VEHICLE. This rental company did not have another GM vehicle available. Had GM allowed them to rent me anything else, there were many other cars on the lot that would have been fine. But you are correct in one problem IS with the dealer...if they would just fix my car I wouldn't have a loaner.
  • jbrichjbrich Posts: 23
    Thought I would let eveyone know what finally happened with our vibration problems. I think it is finally gone! Solution: new MICHELIN tires. After they made adjustments to the road force and rims it was improved but not perfect. They came back to us and said that GM felt that the remaining vibration was due to the tires (which I told them from the beginning)and they agreed to replace them with whatever we wanted. We got Michelin MXM4. It's like a whole different car. As long as we have this car, it will have Michelins. Now maybe I can start to enjoy my new Lucerne! Thanks to everyone who gave me were right! :)
  • newguy6newguy6 Posts: 34
    This has been a GM problem for years. I had A '01 Intrige that was a great car execpt for that thumping noise when hitting any little bump in the raod at low speeds. The car was taken to the dealer seven times, everything you can thinhk of was replaced but nothing fixed it. I don't really think anyone could figure out what the problem was then and apparently they still can't.
  • I'm leaning toward the purchase of a 2006 Lucerne CXL-8 and the vibration issue is a concern. I have test driven it and noticed the noise of the Northstar v8 engine (a little diasappointing I must say) more than any vibration and also some drifting and and that is expected when wheels are not aligned perfectly. Any advice from those that have experienced these problems would be welcome.
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