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Cadillac Catera Maintenance & Repair



  • Thanks, Dave and Lou,
    That is what I was thinking. Unfortunately, the GM dealer that installed it is no longer in business. They were a real nightmare (wrong tools, lack of integrity, took forever - they had my car for over one month).
    Is there a way to check to see if the timing is off without taking the whole thing apart again?
  • ssklsskl Posts: 45
    Can you try another GM dealership or search or call for GM help on the internet since one of theirs did the work.
    If the cam is out of time the computer would pick it up immediatly and might shut off fuel/firing on cyls. affected. So the combination of codes need to be analyzed which are only clues to the problem. Manifold and crankcase pressures would be affected which are a sign of valve malfunction which also is picked up by the computer.
    Therefore a $90 analysis at any good shop is necessary before altering anything. If a cam timing problem is evident then you would be assured that the repair needed would be the right one.
  • Thanks for the information. We've paid the $95 several times at a service shop for analysis. They are stumped, thinking it is the computer throwing false codes. The first time, the car wouldn't start, so they replaced a coil. Now it works, but continues to throw codes. (They are not a GM service center)
    After the GM dealer went out of business, we had no GM dealer/service here on the island. A new GM dealer opened a couple of weeks ago. We tried to take my car there, but they said that they didn't want to work on it anyone other than a GM dealer had worked on the car.
  • lou89lou89 Posts: 27
  • Thank you! Will do.
  • jpt109jpt109 Posts: 1
    I checked the one spark plug I could get to because starting has been getting harder, it always turns over but sometimes it cranks for a long time. Starter is O.K. so I suspected either ignition or fuel pump. When I removed the plug wire and looked at the plug there seemed to be oil all around it. Naturally; some cause for concern.

    No engine lights or codes. Can anyone shed some light? I'm not a mechanic and far from it but, it seems to me it is not a good thing. Car runs fine in every other way.

    Your thoughts?

  • Hello gnguru,

    My 2001 Catera has the code below. Can you help?

    Thanks. tt1mich@ ya h o

    PO411 DTC is "AIR System No Flow Detected". If you give me an email address I'll scan the troubleshooting instructions from the '98 Catera Service Manual and send them to you.
  • chaz6043chaz6043 Posts: 1
    Let me begin this by saying like so many before me that " I love this car". With that said I don't know where to go with all the problems I have had. the radiator, security, rear end, brkes, tires, crazy radio, TC/ABS lights and it goes on. My newest problem is, it is running like crap really rough. Almost like a vac line or loading up on fuel. It stinks literaly and is smoking. If you get it out and get on it, it seems to smoothe out. Any good suggestions on where to start?

    Thanks in advance
  • gngurugnguru Posts: 108
    I can sympathize with you and your Catera ( :lemon: ) problems. You should start by going to your nearest Lexus dealership. That's what we did and have never looked back! :) Car runs like a top and only requires an occasional drink and bath. No more headaches.. :shades:
  • How do u go about replacing the ABS module, and where is it located?
  • az_hvyaz_hvy Posts: 30
    I need a breakdown for thermostat in my 98 Catera I know its under the Intake Plenum but I have herd something about torx bolt I need any and all help I can get Thanks Hvy
  • odessa4odessa4 Posts: 1
    Dear Sir Where did you buy oxygen sensors for 1997 Catera. However, I lucked out on the Oxygen Sensors. Dealer wanted $150 ea. But I was able to locate them for $40 ea. please advise,thanks
  • ok so i bottomed out and put a small dent in the oil pan in my catera and now the motor just turns over very slowly when i drove it last the oil pressure dropped so i pulled over and shut the car off to make sure it wasnt leaking oil or i didnt poke a hole in the oil pan so when i turned the car back on it started very rough so for some reason i turned it off agian and it would no longer start will turn over very slow like the battery is dead so i checked the battery starter alternator and they were all fine so i dropped the oil pan and the dent wasnt even close to any of the parts located inside so i am unsure what the problem may be if anyone could help in some way that would be reat
  • gngurugnguru Posts: 108
    Don't know how hard you bottomed out but could you maybe have dislodged the crank and/or cam position sensor? Of course either one of those senarios shouldn't cause the engine to turn over slowly when you're trying to start it! You may have a tough fix there. Maybe get a scanner and see what codes it is showing. Good luck.
  • lou89lou89 Posts: 27
    I did not see a reference that you pulled the dip stick to determine if there was oil in the pan , however you said you dropped the pan , but no reference to draining oil before doing so. If the oil pressure dropped , there is no oil circulating in the engine . Either no oil or damage to oil pump or the pickup inlet such as a screen or pickup pipe is bent or broken to the extent that pump cannot suck up oil . If pump cannot deliver oil, the engine may be frozen or seized ...very bad news...hope not . Your comment that dent was not to the extent it could have damaged the pump system is the hope , but the fact that the oil pressure dropped, totally, I resume sounds to me that the engine was run wit h no oil circulating .
  • 4-21-2011 Cadillace Catera 2000 - 90,000 miles. Engine stalling after short trips. I sit and wait 10-20 minutes and it re-starts. The "check engine light" does NOT come on. Can anyone tell me what might be wrong with it?

    I need my little luxury car. :shades:

    I have had the car since 2006, and had no problems until here lately. Just had the valve cover gaskets replaced, and the radiator, which I consider to be normal maintenance. Also, this winter the ABS and Traction control lights came on, and when it does the Speedometer does not work. I've been told that is usually a clog in the lines and those lights are triggered by air and that debris gets into the hoses around and about the brakes.
  • Where did you find these oxygen sensors at? Please help me I'm in Muncie, Indiana.
  • micldarmicldar Posts: 7
    If the problem (running de car) happen when you stop and switch off the car, and after you try to start it, then it may be the Neutral Safety Switch (NSS), installed over the transmission (very easy to remove). Try disconect this device making a direct connection to the starter (same cables that runs from neutral switch). Drive your Cadi. This work can be done by an electromechanic (30 bucks).

    The Neutral S. Switch is a security device, please read about it. With the NSS the car start only in Parking (P) and Neutral (N).

    Good luck!
  • lou89lou89 Posts: 27
    I read your reply to hubbasmom re NSS switch . I have an 89 which has had a restart problem . No problem over winter months. but two days this spring tem hit 90 and after errands around town, attempt to restart will have to raise hood and let air cool down engine compartment for about 15 min, then restarts . our thoughts . Over years dealers cannot find anything in diagnosis, because after hauling in or after fact , nothing evident..." bring it in when the problem occurs "...duh . Thanks
  • lou89lou89 Posts: 27
    edited April 2011
  • dit79dit79 Posts: 2
    I just purchased this car it sat for over a year when I picked it up it started up and drove it home almost 70 miles a way It hesitated but I thought it was bad gas so I put 93 octane and some dry gas and drove it almost 70 miles it hestitated while I drove it home but made it I started playing with it I disconnected the battery and reconnected it then it wouldn't start I tried everything I left it on the on postiton and it sounded like some kind of fluid was rushing through the enginge then make some kind of noise then sounded like it blew some air then I started it up it started for like 5 seconds then it would die. Please help!
  • lou89lou89 Posts: 27
    I do not have firsthand Catera experience with your symptoms, but with the car sitting over a year, the fuel would have gone bad, or a fuel filter clogged, or both. If there is sediment in the tank from old fuel and the intake line has a "sock" type filter in the tank, as the fuel pump pulls in fuel for the cylinders, sediment can build up on the filter clogging it, cutting the supply off to the engine. After sitting awhile, the sediment resettles to the bottom of the tank. It could restart after that and the clogging cycle begin again. There could also be an inline fuel filter. A lot of if's in this which can be eliminated by flushing the fuel tank and line through the injectors by a mechanic. Boy, don't know what the noises are. Check the radiator and heater hoses; could have dry rotted. The cooling system builds up pressure when at running temp.
  • dit79dit79 Posts: 2
    thanks for your help lou89. I put a scanner on the car and 4 codes came up. p1790, p1890, p0650, and p0100. need help getting this car going.
  • lou89lou89 Posts: 27
    go to an auto parts store,ex.Auto Zone, and they may be able to pull up and ID these codes for you. Usually do not charge for this service.
  • I have a 97 Catera with a wierd problem. When first running the car the TC warning light will start flashing and the car will lose power. Turning of the traction control system fixes the problem. I need to know the sensor that controls the traction control or what could be causing this. Any help wold be appreciated.
  • hubbasmomhubbasmom Posts: 3
    It has already been fixed. It was a Crankshaft Position Sensor. I bought it at the Cadillac-Chevrolet Dealership for a few dollars less than O'Reilly's Auto Part store. Now, my radio is intermittent and the ABS Traction lights are on and my Speedometer, Odometer and Cruise Control don't work. I pretty much already know what it is on this forum, but I cannot afford to have it all fixed. I just run my radar detector. Thank heaven for everyone on this forum because practically no one knows how to diagnose these cars. :surprise:
  • I drove it last time but I had to stop because of the smoke. Oil was leaking from where the 2 sets of 3 spark plugs are. Now I can still crank it but it runs only for 2 seconds and stops ( it runs smooth though so hopefully it's not a major problem). I know the valve cover gaskets need to be replaced and probably the spark plugs too. I am not sure how to fix it ( what do you guys advise me to do ?) My car leaks , is this normal ? Please I take it to a much are we talking here to fix it ???
  • catera97catera97 Posts: 5
    Just bought a 97 Catera today for 375 bucks....its got 124k miles on it runs and drives really good...Drove it home 95 miles, but here's the thing that freaked me out...Got on the highway and for 10 miles or so white smoke blew out the exhaust pretty bad..I told my wife omg it has a blown head gasket, but my wife said its not overheating just keep going...The guy I bought it from said it was burning oil, and it's been sitting for a couple of months because it needed tires so bad...Too make a long story short after the 10 mile smoke fiasco the smoking stopped, and its seemed to run better the more I drive it? LOL I don't understand this, but since I bought the car it has not gone over halfway on the coolant level on the dash and it moves so it works...The antifreeze in the reserve is crystal green nothing mixed in...Any ideas???
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