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Oldsmobile Intrigue Transmission / Suspension Problems

I recently purchased a GLS from a very good used car lot - willing to fix anything in the first month. Also with a drivetrain and transmission warranty for 2 years or 30,000 miles. Three times now while highway driving the car started to shake and shudder, really felt it in the steering wheel. Felt like a wheel was out of balance. This happened between 40 and 65 mph. They checked it out - no codes. Thinking the engine might be missing I punched it down - only got worse as speed increased. I let off the gas and while approaching a stop the car didn't seem to roll freely - any ideas.


  • We've had both front tie rods & struts replaced so you might have those checked out. Did you do a Carfax report or have a GM dealer print out a repair history for this car? Better see what's been worked on in the past to see if you may get some additional work done on a silent warranty.
  • tres_74tres_74 Posts: 16

    I have a '99 Olds Intrigue GX with an Automatic transmission with 113,000 miles on it. I've owned it for the past 3 1/2 years with no major issues until the past year.

    I'm experiencing hard shifting from time to time (lasting one or two jerks that only happen maybe once every few weeks or so) that gets a lot worse when I'm doing "stop and go" city driving in warm weather. It first got worse for me I want to say it was late last summer. Hubby has a Scan Tool and was able to pull a Code of P0742 - Torque Converter Clutch Stuck On.

    The hard shifting eventually subsided completely when the weather got colder, but now that it's been getting into the 90s, last Wednesday night it got worse again. After the car sitting for several hours while I was at work I drove a few blocks to to pick up a friend, car sat for a couple minutes, drove a few blocks to the park, the car sat for a 1/2 hour, drove a few blocks to drop off my friend, and along the way it started jerking a bit and acting up. In the past, sometimes if I just manually shift the car, it helps to better control the car so that's what I did. However, after I dropped her off, when I was on my way home, it got much worse. I didn't even a few blocks from my friend's house before it was hard shifting no matter how I drove it and it did this for about 3 miles or so. I turned the car around so that I could park it back at my workplace a couple miles away. 30 minutes passed with the car off and my husband drove it home without any trouble.

    I have driven it since with very little problems, and we even drove it on a road trip yesterday (highway miles mostly) taking it about 120 miles from home with little problem.

    Any suggestions, or has anyone else experienced the same thing??

  • margomargo Posts: 6
    Hi Tracy,
    I had the exact thing happen last summer. It shifted incredibly hard and made a "clunking" noise from time to time, always during city driving. I would pull over, turn it off, and restart. Worked every time...but I don't know why. I posted here and it seems lots of people have had this problem. Someone wrote that they heard disconnecing the battery for 30 min or so helped, so I tried it.....oddly enough, I haven't had the problem since. Now, I don't know if the problem will return this summer, but I'd say it hasn't happened since last July. Very odd problem. Anyway, Sorry I'm not much help...but if you figure out the real root of the problem let me know.
  • bayview6bayview6 Posts: 141
    It's call torque converter shudder. Had the same thing happen to me. Added some LubeGard transmission protectant and the problem was gone the next day. You can buy at Napa Auto Parts for about $10. It's in a red bottle.

    You might want to get a transmission fluid and filter change before adding it though if you haven't had that service during the past 3 years.
  • mick1mick1 Posts: 84
    Just letting you know I had the same problem at 110,000mi. The problem is the torque convertor clutch switch. This is an electronic switch. It's true that heat can affect a bad switch from working properly. I had the dealer do the repair for almost $800. I didn't want to possibly damage the tranny or torque converter by not fixing it immediately. If your getting that code don't expect any other recommendations to fix this as it is only wishfull thinking. This morning I went past 152,000 on the original transmission. Good luck.
  • bayview6bayview6 Posts: 141
    Q. I have a 1998 Grand Prix GTP with 75,000 miles on it. Recently I have been experiencing a problem which happens normally after the car is driven 200 miles. The check engine light will come on and the slow speed response is very rough like the engine is about to stall.

    This has happened several times and I have not been able to get it to do it while at the dealer. Today I went to the parts store and bought a code scanner but the check engine light had went off. I connected the scanner anyway and retrieved code P0742 which says something about the torque converter solenoid being stuck. Does this make sense and is there anything you could point to that would help me solve this problem?

    A. Gee, a GM product with a stuck TCC solenoid, how rare. Actually this is very common on GM vehicles. You would think after ten years of problems with it, they would have come up with a better way of controlling the lockup torque converter.

    It seems like it is just sticking intermittently so I would suggest a transmission fluid and filter change to see if the clean fluid will clean out the TCC solenoid. If not, it will have to be replaced.
  • dtownfbdtownfb Posts: 2,918
    I had the same thing happen to me back in December and then in January but I had a different code. Mine refered to the MAF. i simply cleaned out the MAF and throttle body and the code has not returned since February (knock on wood).
  • tres_74tres_74 Posts: 16
    Thanks for all the suggestions. I have already tried the transmission protectant/lubricant and anything else I can get my hands on at the parts store. Hubby manages an auto parts store which helps. I also had read a lot about the Torque Converter Clutch Solenoid being problematic for these types of trannies. Hadn't heard of the switch, though. Will keep that in mind. Did unplug the battery for the heck of it, figured what could it hurt. Haven't had a problem since but it's only been a few days. The check engine light has only come on a couple times in the past month, and there have been plenty of hot & humid days in between, so it is pretty intermittant still.

    Going to a local mom and pop tranny place today to get an estimate, so will let you know what I Find out
  • tres_74tres_74 Posts: 16
    He said that the valve body needs to be rebuilt, including the TCC solenoid that is housed within it needs to be replaced. He was confident this would take care of the problem since he has come across this very issue with these particular transmissions on these cars. When he took my car for a road test, although he could not get it to start acting up to pull a code from it, he had it hooked up to the computer and when he looked at how the transmission was running, he could tell from the rpms and some other number that I can't remember the name of that it was, that those numbers proved to be just on the borderline of starting to be problematic. He said it's hard to say how long before I'd absolutely HAVE TO get it fixed, it could be another few months or few years, but that it would eventually need to get taken care of because it's a recurring issue with the type of tranny in my car. He said that with the labor (about 5 hours) and parts along with fluids, etc. that it would cost around $500. I told him that I didn't have the money right now, but would plan to give him a call within the next couple of months.
  • bayview6bayview6 Posts: 141
    tres, how often did you change the tranny fluid and filter on the car?
  • tres_74tres_74 Posts: 16
    Bayview, we changed the transmission fluid and filter in my car late last summer.

    Yesterday my husband talked to the local GM dealer mechanic who said they may be able to "trick" the car into thinking it's running properly by cutting a wire somewhere. The computer is overriding where it shouldn't be or something? It supposedly wouldn't cause the car any harm, except when it would "act up" their wouldn't be any power towards the solenoid, which is causing the problem. Anyone heard of doing this?
  • dtownfbdtownfb Posts: 2,918
    Sounds liek a good maechanic and a good price. he gave some very good information.
  • Hey everyone, I'm riding down the expressway yesterday everything is fine. I start exiting the expressway, and all of a sudden my transmission goes out? 2000 Intrigue GX, no warning, no skipping, no signs of a bad transmission; all of a sudden with a snap of a finger no forward, no reverse, nothing. Any Ideas?
  • bayview6bayview6 Posts: 141
    Check the fluid level.
  • tres_74tres_74 Posts: 16
    I'm SO glad my husband talked to that GM mechanic - - the guy looked up this code in their dealer manual for this car, and all hubby had to do was look up the correct wire in the book, and snip it. I drove it today on a hot humid day and a lot of stop and go driving and it normally would have acted up, and simply didn't. Awesome! And even better, it didn't cost a penny! I even checked with another mechanic I work with and he said there's no reason why that method wouldn't work. I'm very excited! I certainly didn't want to spend 1/2 of what the car is worth when I don't even have it paid off yet. :-)

    ~Tracy :)
  • mick1mick1 Posts: 84
    your fix = lower gas mileage. Let us know if this is the case.
  • tres_74tres_74 Posts: 16
    Yup mick1 that was something that hubby brought to my attention, he said that since the torque converter clutch solenoid wouldn't be kicking in, that would cause the rpms to raise during those times, which would probably in turn cause my gas mileage to decrease. So I did know about that so even though I said it didn't cost a penny...I know in the long run it will because of the likely gas mileage decrease.

    Currently I get about 20-23mpg. I will definitely post in the next few weeks what my gas mileage becomes at this point.

    Another thing we are planning is to install a switch where that wiring is located. That way, in the summertime when I'm having issues with the solenoid due to hot weather, I can flip the switch so the power to the solenoid is switched off. In the wintertime when I don't have issues at all, I will have the switch flipped so that there is power to the solenoid.

    I will keep you posted.

  • tres_74tres_74 Posts: 16
    For my first full gas tank since we clipped the TCC solenoid wire, I got 22mpg. So I'm still well within my normal range. Had several humid days and did a lot of stop and go driving this past week as well. Will keep you updated if the gas mileage goes out of my normal range of 20-23mpg.

  • di99di99 Posts: 18
    99 Intrigue GL 3.5L w/ 95K miles and the same thing is happening w/ the transmission.
    A bit nervous about the transmission only because the tranny went on my old Delta 88 at 95K!!
    Interestingly enough, I also had the transmission fluid replaced etc (brother did that for me so not exactly sure what was done) last December.
    Seems like the car jerks when the car shifts.
    I bought some Lucas product to this as good as the Napa product?
    I figured, it can't hurt and might even help. Should I have my mechanic try this wire-clipping trick too?
    Don't want to replace the transmission!
    Thanks for any suggestions,
  • tres_74tres_74 Posts: 16
    When your car does this, does the Service Engine Soon (SES) Light come on? The wire-clipping deal will ONLY possibly work for you if:

    a) Your Service Engine Soon (SES) light comes on
    b) Your mechanic retrieves a code from a Scan Tool
    c) The code retrieved is one of the 2 codes that the dealer manual suggests to do the wire clipping "trick"

    My husband does mechanic work on our cars so he was able to do the wire-clipping once he checked the book to see which exact wire that it was - - but only AFTER he gave the code we got from hubby's Scan Tool to the dealership mechanic, who told us about the wire-clipping.

    Hope that helps. Good luck!


    P.S. - A "side effect" of the wire-clipping of course is that since there is no power going to the TCC Solenoid, the car recognizes this and therefore the SES Light is on all the time now. But as long as my car runs smoothly then we don't worry. Since hubby has a Scan Tool we can also check the codes from time to time as well.
  • donp9donp9 Posts: 29
    What were the codes retrieved by the GM mechanic for this particular problem. Thanks

    Had to replace the lower control arm vertical bushings on my 2000 Intrigue GL at 150,000 km's. GM parts guy was suprised they had only lasted that long as this was the first time he had ordered these parts for an Intrigue (Winnipeg dealer). Pain in the butt to replace as you have to remove the entire control arm. Took about an hour for both sides but overall not too bad.
  • di99di99 Posts: 18
    Thanks for the info Tracy.
    Service Engine Soon light does not go on.
    Guess that's a good thing!
  • di99di99 Posts: 18
    Back again - I had a mechanic put the 24oz bottle of Lucas transmission "helper" in a few days ago, but the tranny is still bucking. I thought it was going away, but when it warms up, it is really noticeable with every gear shift.
    So! I have a question. Has anyone else experienced the phenomenon of having the transmission go soon after having the transmission flushed, etc? Maybe it's just dumb luck/coincidence, and my other Olds lost the transmission at 95K, too.
    How will I know when it is imminent? Right now it isn't slipping, just clunking, and it is intermittent. Is there a diagnostic "code" for "your transmission is about to quit"? Seems as though I heard someone mention one (seriously).
    PS Should I add another bottle of Lucas?? I really can't afford for the tranny to go now.
    Any input is welcome :o)
  • bayview6bayview6 Posts: 141
    If you had your tranny power flushed, and then started having problems, I would change tranny fluid and filter, and add a red bottle of LubeGard tranny additive. LubeGard is the ticket.
  • di99di99 Posts: 18
    Thank you for the feedback. It sounds logical, and I will try just about anything to save this transmission!! Will be back here posting again if it works :)
  • di99di99 Posts: 18
    I'm b-a-c-k...Well, haven't had time to change the transmission fluid and filter yet, and add the LubeGard, but, checked my receipt for the transmission work in Dec 05, and they did not power flush it as far as I can tell.
    Good news, the tranny is not shifting as hard since the Lucas was added; actually, seems to have gotten better gradually. Still does not like getting hot (hot weather/driving an hour or so, would start jerking into gears).
    Bad news, yesterday a new "thing" happened. Twice, when I was starting up after a stop light, felt like I was running over railroad tracks (this is what happened right before my '87 Olds Delta 88 lost it - the tranny, that is).
    Think the writing is on the wall, but just wanted to give an update.
    Wish I had answers to some of the other problems people are posting :confuse:
  • I have a '99 GL. I sufered brain fade the other day and ran over a parking space curb. It broke my sway bar. The shop where I buy tires quoted me $550 to replce it. He said it's hard to get at. I crawled under, and it looks like it may be. Does anyone have experience with changing one? Does the sub-frame have to be removed?

    By the way, I have the flickering lights problem. It happens only when it's cold, 35 degrees or lower. And the steering shaft has been replaced on warrantee. That was good for about 60k miles, then the clunking happened again. The dealer said he squeezed some grease into the shaft. I have the impression a spray can may not get it done.
  • di99di99 Posts: 18
    Don't know about the sway bar, and thankfully, have not had many electrical problems or the flickering lights issue...oh wait, I do recall now having to have the driver door controls worked on because the windows would not open, but that was right after I bought my GL.
    Anyway, still think we might be able to use the aerosol lithium grease...others have, and I will post after I try it. You have to use the little red tube that comes on the can and slide down the rubber tubing that covers the shaft. Think positioning yourself under the steering column to do it is the trick. We shall see :)
  • Good luck. Hope it works. If so, I'll do it myself next time.
  • (Firstimer)I have a 2000 oldsmobile Intrigue (110,000 miles) Can anyone (you) tell me which wire to cut (color and possable location), because I have the same issue. It meets all the items I read in forum #896 check engine light comes on, 2 codes from scanner tool. I erase and after a while it comes back on.I also read I could flush the transmision fluid and that might fix the issue.
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