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GM's triplets Venture, Silhouette, and Montana



  • bob550kbob550k Posts: 148
    I had the belt replaced at about 60,000 miles. I don't bother replacing hoses anymore, the newer type of hoses just don't seem to fail in the So. Cal. weather.

    What is the lower gasket? Oil pan? Trans Pan?
  • snowman89snowman89 Posts: 36
    With 103,000 and a summer trip planned I think it would be smart to change belts and hoses. The lower intake gasket is the one that is leaking thanks to GM's BS engineering skills combined with DexCool's corrosive factors (never go 5 yrs with it!). Since writing my post I have talked to a local and highly recommended mechanic who tells me that if the lower seal fails completely that coolant can flow into the oil pan and bam, there goes your engine. He gave me a quote of $780 out the door to replace the seal with an updated and more durable one, replace all belts and all hoses, and install a new thermostat since it's a pain to do and he'll be in that area anyway. He will also change out the oil to remove any possibility of contamination, and top off the coolant since some may be lost in the process. He is highly recommended and I have had him do work before so I have this booked with him for next week.
    The transmission issue is the hard shifting problem identified elsewhere in this forum...about 600 last year for that plus about 500 to replace the a/c condensor that cracked. I've also had brakes replaced, and front suspension work- no wonder GM is going under. While Honda and Toyota built quality, they built crap.
  • boga228boga228 Posts: 50
    Their ok minivans. GM is all about corporate GREED!
  • jeddryjeddry Posts: 33
    My 2001 Venture has started making a funny squealing sound when I am driving and I need to give it some gas to get up a hill or anytime it has to downshift and rev up a bit. Any suggestions on what this could be? It almost sound like the belt, when it's in Neutral and I rev it up it make an even louder sound. If it is indeed the this a difficult job to change?
  • chaseschases Posts: 41
    Sorry I could not reply sooner. Hope nothing went south on you.

    Anyway, last year I had two of my pullies bearings go out. When they did they took out the belt and some wiring. Pull the belt off and manually feel all the pullies, and when I say all I do mean all. Give them a turn and wiggle them up and down to see if they have any play. The pullies are all generally easy to change.

    Also.....check your bottom crank pully and your alternator. The crank pully is made up of two metal parts bound together with a rubber piece between them. The rubber gets hard over time and the two metal parts start to separate. If they look misalligned at all you will do yourself a favor by changing it. Mine luckly just ate up a belt first. I have heard of the pully coming apart and really doing some damage to the van. You will need to go through the right side wheel well to change it.

    I have not changed the alternator yet. So I don't know what that entails yet.
  • pbasspbass Posts: 8
    I have a 2000 Venture with 172000 km. The van runs great except for an intermittent problem where the gears shift roughly. This problem started a few years ago. If I turn the engine off and start it up again it'll run fine for about ten minutes and then the rough shifting starts again. Sometimes it takes a half hour before it starts acting up. Other times it does not act up at all. Anyone experience this problem before?
  • atieusatieus Posts: 1
    I have a Chevy Venture Warner Bros. edition and i am having trouble with figuring the audio. Is there a manual or something somewhere? I can only get the audio to play the VCR with the radio turned off.
  • bob550kbob550k Posts: 148
    That's how ours works. Turn off the Radio and the audio for the Video comes on.

    Since my kids get car sick we don't use the Video, but I'm guessing that if the people in back plug in headphones you can run your stereo/CD/Tape through the front speakers only.
  • bob550kbob550k Posts: 148
    One of the front turn signals (lamp socket) on our 1999 Silo is dust. I need a new one. Anyone know of a replacement that's not $67 from the dealer? I figure as long as I'm at it I'll replace all four sockets up front, the 2 turn signals and the 2 side markers. I ordered the replacement light assembly on ebay for $36.10 for a pair! I can't believe the 4 sockets are over $200 from GM.

    It's a plastic light bulb holder for chXXXs sake!
  • chaseschases Posts: 41
    Junk yard it.

    Most junk yards I have visited have let me cut the sockets out that I need as long as the rest of the harrnes is a pain to get to. I think I have pair $5 ea.
  • bob550kbob550k Posts: 148
    $5 each? I'm in!

    if you have more, I'd like to replace both front turns and both front side marker lamp sockets. But I'll take what I can get.

  • wbollwboll Posts: 1
    10 degrees out today, temp gauge goes from cold to hot in 3 miles,heat not working,mechanic says possible head gasket, how could that effect heat an temp guage so fast Not loosing fluid, not smoking.??what is stuck, is it really overheating in 5 minutes or am I getting false readings from my temp gauge?? Can you advise, thanks, WES
  • Yup, probably head gasket. See my post #1558 and all my previous. That's what finally fixed my '03. Just wish I had the valves done at the same time.
  • bob550kbob550k Posts: 148
    I guess my windshield washer pump going out in our 99 is pretty insignificant compared to that... I just have to figure out how to get it out of the plastic bottle.
  • Purchased a 03 with 60,000 km's on it, this past September. Few concerns dealer has not been able to rectify. Traction Active system comes on even though tires aren't spinning (huge safety concern) they put new brake module in problem seemed to have gone away but is back again. Also when pushing heated seat button on drivers side, loud buzzing noise casuing rear passenger door light to come on and then the seat turns off? Again dealer changed power seat module still problem exsists.

    Any idea's?

  • I want to give back to the message board as I used it to assist in diagnosing some issues that were happening in a 2000 Chevy Venture van I bought to resell. The van had 120k miles on it.

    The first thing was the blower motor would only work on speeds 4 & 5. The fix offered here worked. Replace the blower resistor behind the blower motor with a new part. It was around $30 or so from Rock auto. The screws that hold it in are tough to access, but it can be done.

    The second thing was the fuel gage would be erratic and not maintain a steady level. As mentioned on the board, the fuel sender in the tank was bad. Since I was just fixing it to resell, I only bought the sending unit. Later it will become obvious why you should replace the fuel pump/sending unit as a unit if you are planning keeping the van as your daily driver. To drop the tank and remove the pump module unit is not real hard, but it is messy and time consuming. One note, the serrated ring that holds the pump module to the top of the tank is threaded and screws on and off like a normal nut. Finding a tool to adapt to the purpose of unscrewing that will require some clever thinking. I used a thin pry bar that had a 90-degree bend. With the 90-degree edge in one of the teeth, I tapped it w/a hammer breaking it loose. When retightening, I reversed the process and broke out a section of the plastic ring. It was tighten enough at that point.

    The third thing was replacing the crankshaft position sensor. I’m not sure now, that it was the problem. The van had all the symptoms described here, so I bought a new sensor. This is a pretty big job if you do not work on cars and have access to some special tools. The harmonic balancer on the crank shaft must be removed. The bolt that holds it is high torque and the pulley is a press fit to the crankshaft. To remove the bolt, an access cover on the bottom, backside of the engine block must be removed exposing the flywheel. You will have to stick something strong and thin in the one of the teeth of the flywheel and let that react against the engine block so you can develop enough torque to break the bolt free on the harmonic balancer. Same is true to retighten when done. Finished torque is 76 ft/lbs. The bolt is a 12mm x 1.5 pitch.
    Now that the bolt is off, you have to pull the harmonic balancer off the crankshaft. A special puller is required. I’m not going to explain the puller, just go order one, or rent one from a auto parts store. Note: this tip will save a lot of heartache. When pulling off the harmonic balancer with the puller, take the bolt already removed and remove the big heavy washer that came with it and set it aside. Now take that unwashered bolt and screw it back into the crankshaft until it stops, finger tight. Now place the puller to the pulley and secure the (3) 3/8” holding bolts to the harmonic balancer. The drive screw should center in the head of the bolt you just installed. That bolt provides a perfect surface to screw into. With the flywheel still locked, you can drive the screw on the puller until the pulley comes off. This will take awhile since it not a tapered shaft, so the whole distance is resistance.
    I my case, I did not install the bolt into the crankshaft and drove the puller screw into the threads of the crankshaft and buggered them up good. I then bought a tap, (that’s how I know what size the bolt is) to chase the treads so I could then screw the bolt back into the crank and start the process over again.
    Now remove the sensor and replace. Getting at the connector and freeing it from the bracket it’s clipped to is another opportunity for the profanity center of the brain to be well stimulated.

    Another lesson was when putting the harmonic balancer back on, the original bolt is not long enough to engage the crankshaft. I bought several different length bolts, 12mm x 1.5, x 65mm and shorter, that would get screwed in many turns before making contact with pulley. It is a lot of force to push that pulley back on the crank, so you need adequate thread engagement so as not to strip them. The flywheel still needs to be secured. As the pulley is pulled on, a shorter bolt must be used until you can use the original one. Of course, each time you do this, the big heavy washer is used on the bolt.
    My rinky dink flywheel holder would come free each time I reversed the screwing direction. Once the bolt/washer is installed, a final torque of 76 ft/lbs (103NM) should be applied.

    Now put everything else back together.

    After all that work, the van really did not start any better when warm. At higher revolutions, it would misfire some and it turned on the check engine light. I disconnected the battery trying to turn off the light, twice, but it remained on. Now comes the expensive part of the story. I have to punt and take it to a shop that could plug into the computers and diagnose what is turning on the light. $400 later, I have an answer.

    Here is the outcome and explanation that made sense to me. The issue was high of back pressure in the exhaust system. The catalytic converter was partially plugged up and creating to much back pressure. The Oxygen sensors, there are 2 here that come into play, were also not performing and that was sending bad info to the engine control computer. He explanation of why the catalytic converter failed makes sense, as that is not a part that should not fail. When these vans have their predetermined intake/head gasket problem, coolant gets into the exhaust system. The severity of the leak, how long you ignore the problem all matter as to how much damage is done to the catalytic converter as this coolant sticks to the catalysist beads in the converter and plugs them up. It also messes up the O2 sensors and that is why they fail. So there was no getting around the problem, it had to be fixed.

    While at the shop, $100 gets diagnostic readings on several systems. The fuel pump, though still running and not sending a trouble code, is on its way out. The next owner will have to deal with that, but that is why I mentioned above to fix it and the sending unit whenever the first one fails as unit. The fuel pump leaks down internally, and that is why the van is little hard starting when warm.

    I hope others will benefit from that data.

    David King
  • I also have a 2003 Denali with the same traction control issue. I just push the button to deactive, but it is a nuisance.
  • CapeCodCapeCod Posts: 117
    edited March 2010
    1998 Olds Van
    Driver's side power switch will lower the passenger side window...
    but will not raise it. Passenger side switch will raise the window.
    Before I start replacing switches and possibly screwing up what does work...
    Is the problem likely the switch or a window motor issue?
    I ask because the driver;s side window works fine from the left switch.
    Right now I can get the pass window back up with pass switch...
    although it could be a bit slower than before???
    Are switches a simple wedge out and replace or does trim have to come off?
    Should I buy new (Switch Doctor) or do the Junkyard dance???
    Thanks !
  • bob550kbob550k Posts: 148
    The driver side switch went bad on ours and did the same thing. It worked fine from the passenger side but not so well from the drivers side.

    These cars are "Snap Together" cars. Just pull up the small plate the switch rides in (pry it up with your fingernails), unplug it, put in the new one and snap it back together.

    The switches are very inexpensive on ebay, I think it was about $30 with shipping included. Might not be worth messing with the junk yard.
  • CapeCodCapeCod Posts: 117
    Do I have to also remove the trim plate that seems to set around the switches?
    My wife has the car right now so I can not go out and look...
    I think I remember a oval trim plate ???
    I will ebay search fro the switches. Thanks.
  • bob550kbob550k Posts: 148
    The plate is probably 6" long maybe 2" wide, sort of oval, the window switches, door locks and mirror all sit in it (I think) Just pull that whole part up with your fingernails, it just pops out. You will see how it goes together inside. It couldn't be easier.

    Good luck.
  • cach22cach22 Posts: 12
    edited May 2010
    Last year we had the inevitable head gasket problem on our 2000 Venture. Then this winter the "Service Engine Soon" light came on. I checked the code and it was indicating the catalytic converter. Well, I did some research and came across several places indicating that the catalytic converter often needs to be replaced (as usual this forum had the most information) after having the head gasket issue. I purchased a direct fit catalytic converter. It comes in two pieces and no instructions. The pictures show only one piece. I purchased a direct fit because I thought no welding was involved. To me the toughest part of replacing the catalytic converter seemed to be getting enough room under the van to be able to work on removing the bolts. Now I am not so sure. Does the direct fit catalytic converter require any welding? I do not have the equipment nor the know how to weld.
  • Degreased engine and sprayed it with water hose. Let dry for three days, now engine won't start. Completely dead, no click, nothing. Pulled starter and had it checked, starter was fine. Anyone had this problem?
  • dirkdaddydirkdaddy Posts: 313
    always good to start engine after washing to dry it out and stuff. I'd check battery connection in this case but sure you got going by now! ;)
  • hhua1hhua1 Posts: 41
    2000 Olds Silhouette 103K miles has been having the dash lights and the head lights flickering many months, most noticible at idling, at high rpm it hardly noticible. I was thinking replacing the alternator, while searching the "how to replace the alternator..." last night. I went out to check the obvious loose connections first, no loose connections found. I tested the alternator with a simple device brought from local automotive parts store and the lights registered 14.0V out put, which is normal. I decided to apply a few light taps on the back cover of the alternator while the engine running. The head lights stop flickering immediately. I think something (relay, voltage regulator, switch, loose connection) inside may have been sticky and was loosen by the tapping. This morning I restarted the car and so far the flickering haven't returned. You may want to try this first before spending the money. Good luck!
  • hhua1hhua1 Posts: 41
    Ours 2000 Silhouette did the same (only rough upshilt). It happed more in the warm and hot temperature. Searched the webs and found the similar information below, I went to the hardware store and only bought the steel spacers (sorry I forgot the dimensions of the spacers) and fixed myself, it was not all that bad. The spacers seems to fixed ours problem so far (about 4 months).

    You may want to search more about the issue on the webs.

    Below is the extract from a site found on the webs, a Chevy site. Good luck:

    i got the transgo sk4t65e kit and changed accumulator springs and spacers, works great, really easy to do. drop pan, unbolt accumulator housing, pull out piston, replace spring with ones in kit and reinstall. takes about 160 bucks and about an hourCan someone give me the names of the places I can get this kit for my 2005 impala,my solienide was done 5 times in 3 years,I'm in Canada and would like to know where to buy the kit and how exactly is it installed,I saw a post on here about it 3 months ago but can't find it noe,also i think someone may have had pics posted of how to install the kit.

    i found the kit by going to and search "transgo sk4t65e" you can buy it from there or any tranny shop should sell them most likely at an inflated price

    I found it easy to do. If you can change your tranny filter you can install this.
    You will need about 9 qts of tranny fluid
    I used seafoam for transmissions in the car for about 100 miles before I did the job, its suppose to clean out everything
    Install new filter and fluid after installing the kit
    I used just the stuff for the accumulator housing, this kit comes with a lot more stuff I didn't use. Some people like some of the other kits, which just come with the plastic shims instead of metal. I have not had any hard shifts since I installed the kit.

    I am not a mechanic, but this is how I did it and found info on the specs, double check just to be sure

    1. disconnect battery
    2. drain tranny fluid
    3. take off tranny pan , keep the gasket because it is more than likely going to be the reusable type ( metal lined)
    4. Unbolt accumulator housing, there are 4 or 5 bolts that mount the accumulator to the tranny, but all of the bolts for the accumulator need to come out sooner or later.
    5. It will have 3 lines going to the accumulator housing, they just slip out with a little finesse
    6. Open up accumulator housing and you will see a gasket, which can be reused, and 2 pistons
    7. Pull those out along with the springs, you will reuse the springs on top of the piston, but not below the piston
    8. The transgo kit uses 3 springs in the 3rd position along with a shim above and below the piston (It will tell you this in the kit)
    9. 2nd uses 2 springs with a shim below the piston.
    10. The rods in which the pistons ride on will fit into the bore at the bottom of the accumulator housing
    11. Clean gaskets and bolt everything back together, make sure the 3 lines are secure and fully installed into the housing
    12. 8mm bolts - 8 ft lbs, 10mm bolts- 18 ft lbs

    I think the whole job cost me about $150 and took about 2 hours. 1 hour to do the job and another to set up and clean up. I have seen people changing the PCS and having the same problem over and over, but the shift kit seems to do the trick from what I have read.
  • bob550kbob550k Posts: 148
    It's time to let our 1999 Old Silo Premere go. The for sale sign is on the window. This has been an excellent car and was siginificatly trouble free for 120,000 miles. Great car, loaded like crazy, good power, good MPG and the interior is better than the 2010 Chrysler T & C Limited I just bought to replace the car. Last year I did have to put a tranmission and head gaskets in the car, but at 122,000 miles that's okay since I did very little else to the car in the past 10 years. The paint still shines, the car drives and runs perfect, the leather is still nice and free of tears. This is still a nice car. No real reason to sell it other than it's 11 years old and we got a new one. This forum was very helpful to correct the minor issues we had with the van. To bad GM doesn't make Vans anymore, I probably would have bought one. The interior of the Limited just doesn't compare in utility or function to the Premiere.
  • surendransurendran Posts: 2
    edited June 2011
    Hi, I would like to know if you fixed your wiper issue ?. If yes, it would be great if you could share what it was and how did you fixed ?

    My 1999 Chevrolet Venture also have same issue. After a snowy day it only works on high speed, and it is not parking.

    Thanks in advance
  • hhua1hhua1 Posts: 41
    The head lights flickering returned, I decided and replaced the alternator.

    Based on my observation of the old alterernator, the issue can be the corrossion of the connections between the alternator and the voltage regulator which is mounted right behind the alternator. It should be very easy to unbolt and clean them all once you have the alternator out side.

    To totally remove the alternator, I have to lossen (I don't have totally drop the engine) and lower the sub-frame 1/4"-1/2", which wasn't as bad as I thought. There is absolutely no room to remove the alternator without lowering the sub-frame, even when the wiper arm is disconnected.

  • viv5viv5 Posts: 1
    Will rack pinion steering from 2000 Venture fit a 2002 Montana.
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