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Buick Rendezvous Maintenance and Repair



  • jk27....

    Yes, it does. Thanks. I guess it's a defect.

    It's a minor annoyance when I'm scanning and look at the HUD when I hear something I like, so I can tune back to the station if I'm too late in canceling the scan. My simple mind was easily confused when I would tune in the frequency the HUD told me, only to find static. Now I know I just have to tune just forward of the frequency I saw on the HUD.

    Thanks for your help.
  • Hi All,
    We are trying to find out if anyone else has had problems like this: engine has died three times when making a left turn after slowing rapidly. Engine has died three times when moving at very slow speeds in a parking lot while attempting to park. Engine has died once while driving very slowly and straight. Dealer has been unable to duplicate problem and I'm beginning to feel just a little bit on the unsafe side.
    If anyone has had any thing resembling this, please email me at
    Thanks a lot!
  • Hello All - it has been about a year since I have posted a message. Sorry about that but been enjoying life with the Rendezvous.

    Last spring I had the wipers on during a light rain. I switched from delay to low. Upon switching back to delay - the wipers continued at low speed. I then switched to high and the wipers went fast; switched again to delay and they were back at normal; in the OFF position they continued at normal speed. I pulled over and turned the Rendezvous off and upon restart the wipers continued to go (while switch in off position). I decided I would drive immediately over to the dealership and present them with this issue and a small list of others (weatherstripping coming unattached; clock losing time; radio volume inexplicably getting louder and/or lower and it seems that I would have to turn the dial from "cold" back to "hot" to get hot heat - it would be just warm until I figured out this little trick).

    So I arrive at the dealership where I purchased the Rendezvous and got to meet the new service manager. I was NOT impressed. Anyway - showed him the problem with the wiper - he moved the switch around ALSO and saw that the wipers would not go off or to delay. I mentioned the other problems to him. I then asked if the car had to be there for any length of time I would like a loaner (as our salesman assured me that I would be entitled to one if the Rendezvous ever had to be in service for a length of time). The service manager looked incredulously at me and said "We don't give loaners". I told him what the salesman told me six months prior and his reply to that was "Well, he's not here anymore and we don't do that". Alrighty then - I went to go sit.

    After sitting for over an hour the SM called me into his office and closed his door - never EVER experienced that before. He asked me to have a seat and began to speak to me like I was a very young, stupid female. First explanation was the clock radio - it is normal to get louder when stepping on the gas and lower when stepping on the brake. My reply: Okay - so why does it do it while at steady speed on interstate? His reply: It doesn't - I must not hear it properly. Next: It is normal for ALL digital clocks to lose time. My reply: I had a Buick for five years prior to the Rendezvous with digital clock and it NEVER lost time. Told him about what I had read at Edmunds re: the clock issue. His reply: Buick is not familiar with this issue and since it's not a Buick message board - doesn't matter. Next: Cannot duplicate the heat issue - bring back another time. Next (and my favorite) Windshield Wipers: Well, Mrs. Snuzone66 - the technician got into the vehicle and noticed that you didn't have the switch in the Off position. When he got in and turned the car on, he put the switch to off and the wipers went off. My reply: MY MOUTH DROPPED!!!! I told him how I tried EVERYTHING and nothing worked and that I had owned the vehicle for over six months and was capable of operating the switch. I pointed out the fact that HE TOO played with the switch. His reply: I didn't turn it back all the way and must be you didn't either.

    I took my keys and left there FUMING. I have NEVER been spoken to in such a condescending manner by anyone in a customer relation-type position before. I called my husband and bit#@% like you wouldn't believe. I called Buick the next day and complained about this so-called Service Manager. They took note but I doubt anything ever happened - in fact I mentioned to the customer relation person at Buick about the Edmunds discussion regarding the clocks losing time and he put me on hold and came back and said there is nothing in their system about clocks losing time.

    Needless to say - anything that my Buick has needed I have relied on my trusty mechanic - which, knock on wood, has only been oil changes!!!!

    BUT tonight it was raining heavy - after driving the Buick for about 15 minutes I moved the switch from low to delay. GUESS WHAT!!!! THE WIPERS WOULDN'T GO OFF. I was kinda excited! My husband was with me and when we got to our destination I turned off the Rendezvous and restarted - wipers still going. My husband came around and played with the swich and believe me - I MADE SURE I TURNED THAT SUCKER ALL THE WAY BACK UNTIL IT "SNAPPED" BACK. The blades still would not turn off. We did our errands and when we got back to the car about 1/2 hour later the wipers were off. BUT on the way home the same thing - after about 10 minutes this time the wipers wouldn't go off.

    Sorry for the long story but the thought of that jerk from last year made me mad and I wanted to give you all some background - not that you all needed it. There is another Buick dealership in my area but I had called them once to inquire about something and he asked if I purchased the Rendezvous from them. I told him no and he didn't seem that interested in my call after that - so I'm hesistant to go to that particular dealership.

    Has anyone else had this problem before??? AGain I apologize for taking up so much eye time.

  • melsnymelsny Posts: 35
    To Snuzone66: I've reported that the clock does lose about 1 minute per week. I find that it isn't quite that bad in cold weather. Buick does have my complaint in their system and they've verified that to me. I was told last winter that they would have a fix by summer but they didn't.

    The only problem that I've had with the wipers is when I accidentally installed 24" blades on both sides. The front passenger side needs a 22" blade. That's very important as you can have a potential jam in a rainstorm if you put 24" on both sides.

    The radio is supposed to get louder as you gain speed. You can control this function by setting the radio preference controls. Check your manual.

    I wouldn't put up with that service manager. Either see dealership management or go to another dealership for service. There's no connection between sales and service and I also have a Pontiac which has never been back to the selling dealership's service dept. I regularly take it to another one.

  • cpm1cpm1 Posts: 3
    2002 RDV purchased December 2002.
    When the hvac is set to the vents and the temperature is set to hot the air flow decreases to 25% (decrease of 75%) of when it is on cold and there is excessive noise. It is going through additional venting in the dashboard.
    Brought it in for service and they checked the 2003 units on the lot and found the same issue and the dealership chalked it up to the following. When you switch to hot the air flows through additional venting decreasing the air flow. It's a design problem they cannot do anything about. Why would GM not correct this problem, it is so obvious especially in the colder climates where the heater is used fairly often.
  • cpm1cpm1 Posts: 3
    The rear hatch struts will not automatically raise the hatch in cold weather. You have to push the hatch up manually but it will stay up once it is there.
    The dealer said that the newer units on the lot do the same thing and couldn't do anything further. GM sure doesn't seem to be correcting design flaws.
    Other than these issues the RDV is pretty good.
  • lg616lg616 Posts: 2
    nosuvyet wrote:Anyone out there with the HUD, I'd appreciate if you could try something for me. Whenever I do a radio scan (not a pre-set station scan), most times when the tuner stops on a station, the dashboard will show the correct station, say 95.3, but the HUD will be "behind" showing 94.7 or 95.1, for example. It happens on both AM & FM. A minor annoyance, but I would like to know if it's just my vehicle, in which case it can be fixed, or if it's an unfortunate "glitch" that's common to their HUD system in general.

    I just bought my Rendezvous on Saturday and discovered the same problem. Have you had your service department look at this yet?
  • jess33jess33 Posts: 13
    At 12,000 miles on my RDV AWD CX w/ Versatrak, I was told by the dealer during routine maint. that my tranny fluid was "burnt". They did a complete flush, covered under warranty, and stated that they saw no other issues with the tranny.

    At 14,000 I was driving and began hearing a loud clunking out of the front end of the vehicle, the AWD disable light came on, and a anti-lock brake light. The RDV was picked up by the delaership on a flatbed. Both wheel bearings, pass and driver were replaced. When questioned the service adviser stated they were worn as a result of defective parts.

    The services adviser stated the two issues are not related. Does any one else have another opinion?. This is the vehicles first winter, and it's been a tough one in New England. I cannot disable the Versatrak, it comes off and on as road conditions warrant. I am wondering if this system is reliable. I am seriously considering dumping this vehicle. This appears to be seriously premature wear for the mileage. Anyone else out there with bearing and tranny problems???
  • 2ndrdv2ndrdv Posts: 4
    Hi, new to these forums, not Rendezvous'. This is my second one in as many years. First one got totalled (rear-ended).

    My issue is the HUD (I didn't have one on the '02). When the car is started I get the Buick logo OK then the radio station and speed. But, for the first 2 to 20 minutes the radio will display incorrectly. It will only display the station if the volume is changed and the station it displays is the one that was on when the car was turned off. After the 1 to 20 minutes the correct station will display, without touching any controls.

    I told the dealer about it on my first oil change. After they checked it out they said "it was designed that way". I think the answers bogus. I can't imagine an engineer designing in something like that.

    Anyone else have similar problems?
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America I70 & I75 Posts: 21,319
    Whenever they say "they all do it" or "it was designed that way,"
    ask to check out one of the new ones in stock. Take it for a drive...,
    take it home for the evening or weekend, could be suggested to let them
    know you're serious about really checking into the validity of their

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

  • nosuvyetnosuvyet Posts: 72
    Haven't brought it in for just that. It's on the list for next oil change time. In a month or so. I'll let you know. And vice-versa I hope?
  • lg616lg616 Posts: 2
    It sounds like this is happening to a few of us. It's a little disheartening to have something go wrong within 2 days of owning the car (even if it is rather minor)! This site was so helpful before deciding to purchase the car. I'm hoping all this problem sharing will help get all the little glitches taken care of as well! Sounds like you might be due for service before me. I'll be curious to find out what they say!
  • cfocfocfocfo Posts: 147
    "Hi, new to these forums, not Rendezvous'. This is my second one in as many years. First one got totalled (rear-ended)."

    2ndrdv, it speaks well that you got another RDV after the first one was totalled.

    Question, did you have the third row seat in the first RDV ? And if yes, was anybody in it at the time of the accident ?
  • 2ndrdv2ndrdv Posts: 4
    Yes, it had a 3rd row seat. No, no one was in it. I usually have (had?) it down and just use it as needed. I'm real glad there wasn't anyone there as I'm sure they would have been hurt pretty bad. As it was, all 3 kids got admitted for minor bumps, back pain, etc. but we all walked away.

    It seemed to take the hit pretty good. We were hit by a pickup with a plow frame at about 35mph. I saw him coming in the rear view mirror.

    It was weird having an opportunity to look for another car so close behind the first purchase. The Pilot wasn't available the first time around (I had a '96 Odyssey). I looked at it on Edmunds and figured it was worth a test drive. Went to talk to my local Honda dealer and they told me I could try one in about 6 weeks.

    After further research, I decided that the Buick still fit my needs best: size; AWD; mileage; comfortable ride (36k on the '02 after 13 mos). I was willing to put up with GM's issues like the HUD and passenger side tilt mirror. Most of the other things seem to be OK.

    My wife says it's ugly, I say at least it's not an Aztec.
  • cfocfocfocfo Posts: 147
    You seeing him coming in the rear view mirror ... there's nothing worse than that split second before impact !
    I hope the insurance companies treated you right.

    Regarding your "opportunity" to look for another car so close behind the first purchase. Opportunity ? For me it's a research chore that I'm happy it only has to be done twice, (1 is to aid my wife) every 8 or 9 years ....... sans an accident, knock on wood. Also, a BIG thanks to EDMUNDS for this forum and research tool !

    Happy to hear that you and your kids were OK.
  • tmakogontmakogon Posts: 74

    02-07-30-039; Firm transmission shifts, shudder/chuggle, transmission won’t downshift on deceleration, service engine soon light illuminated, DTC P0742 Set (perform diagnostics and replace TCC PWM Solenoid); 2003 Buick Rendezvous with 4T65-E Transaxle


    02-08-49-011; Console air deflectors inoperative, broken or missing, door latch broken (replace appropriate component); 2002-03 Buick Rendezvous

    02-01-38-004; Air conditioning is not cold enough (replace condenser); 2002 Buick Rendezvous

    02-01-39-008; A/C compressor inoperative, a/c cycles too often, insufficient cooling, DTC P0530 (replace a/c high pressure valve); 2002-03 Buick Rendezvous with Mitsubishi air compressor

    02-08-44-022; Static noise heard in radio speakers (install capacitor into rear differential clutch check valve circuit); 2002-03 Buick Rendezvous with All Wheel Drive
  • 2ndrdv2ndrdv Posts: 4
    I think I have seen this posted here before. The issue is when the passenger side mirror tilt in reverse feature is turned on the mirror, over time, will not return to its original position. This was a BIG problem in my '02 (may it RIP). After 3 or 4 days you would be looking at the sky.

    The dealer replaced both the mirror and sending unit, to no avail. I got in the habit of hitting the memory button to reset it.

    Now my '03 is starting to do it. It was OK for the first month or so, but now I notice it's out of alignment after a week, or so.

    Of course, this is a non-reproducible problem at the dealer's. I have sat there going from drive to reverse 15 or 20 times and it won't happen. Ignore it for a couple of days and you're scouring the skies.

    I have always wondered why when you unlock the door with the fob it doesn't reset it. The manual says that the fob will reset everything to Driver 1 or 2. The dealer hasn't a clue.

    Anyone else have this problem?
  • wws2wws2 Posts: 23
    There were some helpful postings on the recalcitrant auto-tilting passenger mirror on this board a year or so ago. To fix, one has to go into the DIC and reset the mirror logic. Perhaps someone can find the post? It worked like a charm in our RDV.
  • olrdvolrdv Posts: 53
    For a 35k car with the trailing package, I was surprised that it did not have the hitch. Dealer asked for almost 700 dollars for hitch and installation including taxes.
    I place an order the for $228.20 + 20% SH.
    Does anyone here have installed a GM hitch? Any instructions or figures? All the GM sites just show pictures of installed ones.
    Thanks for your reply.
  • 2ndrdv2ndrdv Posts: 4
    I have found most car makers that offer "trailering packages" only include wiring and oil and transmission coolers. I know that's the case on this car. I think you've already found the best bet, a Hidden Hitch, or some other brand. My dealer arranged to have it installed, the cost was the similar to the figure you mentioned.
  • Karen_SKaren_S Posts: 5,095
    Enter 46 in the "Go to Msg#" box.

    Edmunds Manager UGC Click on my screen name to send a personal message. Need help navigating? Check out Getting Started in Edmunds Forums.
    Need help picking out a make/model, finding inventory, or advice on pricing? Talk to an Edmunds Car Shopping Advisor

  • Has anyone changed their fuel filter. Where is it located? Also, has anyone had problems with the turning knob on the side of the drivers seat falling off? We have had it in the dealer once for it and it still doesnt stay on.
  • fedlawmanfedlawman Posts: 3,118
    I just took my RDV in for an oil change and had some warranty bugs addressed.

    These bugs included the falling lumbar adjustment knob, slightly confused memory mirrors, and a wandering compass. I also have a buzz in the passenger side of the rear cargo area over textured pavement and road "dots"...I'll fix that one myself.

    Broken clips on the knob caused it to fall off and a new knob is on order, as are new motors for the power mirrors (per TSB). The compass simply needed to be recalibrated (drive around in a circle three times).

    I also have a slow clock, but rather than risk opening pandoras box, I prefer to just set it 2 or 3 minutes ahead of my wristwatch whenever I notice it's more than a few minutes biggie.

    Oh yeah, my wife backed into a partially concealed electrical breaker box last month and put a nice mark on the rear bumper (good thing the plastic is grey underneath the paint)...and then last week, her mom ground the front bumper into a yellow painted concrete post. Thank goodness for polishing compound.

    29,000 miles and going strong...
  • mnfish1mnfish1 Posts: 14
    hi just took my 2003 rdv in to local mn dealer john hirsh cambridge...found a little rock that was making the scretch is a wonder what those great mechanics can do....wonderfull!!!
  • rdv has 6500 miles, absolutely love the ride and space but all four windows have a tight fit and have scratched and etched marks in glass from putting windows up & down. You can actually hear the windows getting scratched as they move. Anyone else notice this problem?
  • jk27jk27 Posts: 244
    I definitely do not have that problem. If I did I would certainly make an appointment with the dealer for repair/replacement -- sooner than later.
  • aehoppaehopp Posts: 3
    Does anyone else have a car that sounds like a wind tunnel? I purchased mine in Feb, it's been in the shop 2 times. I have a high pitched wind noise coming from somewhere around the top of the frame or windows. It's driving me crazy. They've tried adjusting the doors, checking the window seals and putting filler goop around the door seals. No solution. Any suggestions? This is my first Buick, and I'm very disappointed with their definition of "luxury".
  • jk27jk27 Posts: 244
    I have had very few problems/glitches with my 2002 RDV CXL, however the lumbar adjustment knob did fall off (and apparently it has for several others of us). I'll have this fixed at the next service appointment.

    Anybody experienced the sunroof stuttering/stopping when it opens? It doesn't happen all the time (seems more prevalent in warm weather).
  • philly88philly88 Posts: 45
    With regards to the wind noise, I've noticed it too, but only sometimes. A high pitched wistle. I find things like this annoying too. But with the radio very low the whistle is all but gone. I've had wind noise on other vehicles and know that the dealers rarely can get to the bottom of it. It doesn't seem to always be there. I am thinking that it may have to do with the direction of the wind and possibly a result of the body clading or mirror rather than the rubber seal. My seals seem good and tight.

    All and all it isn't detracting from my fondness of my new ride. Its GREAT.
  • aehoppaehopp Posts: 3
    I think my whistle is more of a "fluttering" sound... it's intermitten too. But now I'm always listening for it and can't stop obsessing! My seals are good, I think it's an engineering flaw in the design. Any idea what GM's return policy looks like? ha ha ha.
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