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GM's triplets Venture, Silhouette, and Montana



  • fear_hopefear_hope Posts: 90
    There are some things to love about this minivan:
    POWER-it doesn't hestitate when you step on the gas
    STEREO-great sound for a stock system
    TRIP COMPUTER-on the standard package
    POWER SLIDING DOOR-great when its raining or hands are full(mine or others)
    ALLOY WHEELS-on the standard package
    SIZE-comfortably seats 7 with plenty of cargo space
    25 GALLON GAS TANK-goes for 100's of miles without a fillup
    Then there are the things to put up with:
    The exterior's lack of style
    All the cheap plastic on the interior
    The noisy engine
    The difficulty in handling(Odyssey is same size but handles like a much smaller van)
    The wind noise
    The road noise
    GM's attitude that fair to good is good enough, excellence is not required
    and the PROBLEMS!
    Things that went wrong:
    All six fuel injectors were replaced-4 trips to dealer
    Complete ignition assembly replaced-3 trips to dealer
    Ignition security module replaced-2 trips to dealer
    Front end clunk-3 trips to dealer and no resolution
    Driveline clunk-dealer can't duplicate and if they could would tell me it is "normal" (according to TSB)
    Piston slap-heard right after warranty expired (wouldn't have received anything except an extended warranty on the engine that wouldn't have been honored unless the engine blew up)
    Temperature and compass that give erratic readings whenever they feel like it-"fixed" 12/01 and continues to be a problem
    Stinky air conditioner/vent-fix was completed, smell is better but not gone
    Hard shifts-not yet diagnosed
    Air bag light on repeatedly while driving-both front airbag modules replaced-3 trips to dealer

    Bottom line:
    If you don't mind a lot of quirky problems, and some major problems and trips to the dealer(maybe you like to visit with the service writers) and you really love the van's virtues, then purchase with an extended warranty.
    If you want a reliable vehicle and peace of mind with few repairs try a Mazda MPV.
    My 2 cents worth...
  • steverstever Posts: 52,683
    How many miles on your van now?

    SUVs, Vans and Aftermarket & Accessories Message Boards
  • fear_hopefear_hope Posts: 90
    54,800 miles, out of warranty since 12/01.
  • shifty4shifty4 Posts: 53
    I seem to remember someone having found a place to buy the pair of pollen filters which reside just behind the glove compartment at a price much better than that available from the GM dealer. For the 97 Silo the Delco filter number is 52470574 and requires two. If anyone remembers this post I would appreciate help in finding it. Thanks.
  • steverstever Posts: 52,683
    mizeuml Mar 30, 2002 2:30pm

    hmmm, on second thought, maybe this one:

    offham Mar 29, 2002 2:14pm

    SUVs, Vans and Aftermarket & Accessories Message Boards
  • shifty4shifty4 Posts: 53
    These were the cabin filter posts that I was looking for. I scanned the board for over a half hour last night and couldn't find them. Thanks for your help. You are the main reason this is such a great forum.
  • Try this website
    I saw them there for $24
    BTW, how often are you supposed to change these
  • ems1ems1 Posts: 48
    Regarding the piston slap: My '98 Venture developed the piston slap at about 25,000 miles. The dealer pulled the engine rebored the cylinders and fitted new pistons. I think they may have been redesigned, but not sure. I know they had problems getting the parts. The van was in the shop for a week. I have over 50,000 miles now and the engine makes a little noise on cold startups but goes away in about 15 seconds. I would prefer no piston slap but I can live with the slight noise I have now. It was a loud tapping before the repair and lasted for about 1 minute. I just had an oil analysis done and it showed no internal problems.
  • greg32greg32 Posts: 48
    We had our Rack and Pinion steering unit fail at 59k miles. A cap was broken where the steering column bottoms out. This failure has 18 complaints at the NHSTA site! I'm sure other people have had this problem. The mechanic thinks its a bushing inside the rack and pinion unit that is failing. This Chevy mechanic has had to replace a number of rack and pinions lately. NHSTA and Chevy are investigating the problem Be careful since this problem can cause the steering to lock up and potentially cause an accident. We had problems steering to the left. Our Van is a 97 Venture Extended with 59k miles.

    If you have had the problem please complain to the NHSTA so Chevy will fix this defect.
  • edmdanedmdan Posts: 4
    Hello to all, I have been reading your conversations for a while now and finally I Have ask if anyone else has this problem. On my 2001 Venture (45,000 km) the rear shoulder belts do not allow the user any slack, in fact they continually cinch themselves tighter every time you move until they are so taunt that you have to undo them, retract all the way back and then it will allow you to pull the belt out enough to put it back on! I have tried a couple of "clips" intended to prevent the belt from retracting but they slip, and when you are not using the belt it is hanging in the way/ out the get the picture...
    Oh yes, it was suggested to check my manual, but this was a lease-return and the manual was missing...AND THE DEALER has yet to get one! or at least let me know it has arrived. So basically I am flying blind with operation and details about my van.
    Other comments, this van runs SO Quietly...I have a hard time telling if the engine is running or not,
    unfortunately there is a wind howl above 100 kph from the windshield passenger side and some scary creaks from the body in cold weather but otherwise I am extremely happy with it.
  • montanafanmontanafan Posts: 945
    The belts should only go into cinch mode if they have been pulled all the way out first. I am very large, and if I ride in my brother's Montana, I can put the belt on fine. If I lean forward, I pull it all the way out and then it goes into cinch mode. If yours are working differently, there may be a problem and the dealer shoudl replace the ones with problems. Also I think if your search for Helm, Inc you can order the manual yourself. Good luck.
  • tomekktomekk Posts: 310
    You probably have air leak (winshield not glued in properly or a seal proble) - this should be fixed under warranty. I'd go to the dealer with it.
    I often drive 75-80mph and there are no wind noises from the windshield...
    Good luck -
    2000 Venture / 31000 miles
  • autolover3autolover3 Posts: 53
    Anyone see information about ordering 2003 Ventures (colors, options, etc)? It's not on the site yet, but I wondered if it is anywhere else to view. A dealer told me the information is already available to them. Thanks in advance.
  • jpc47jpc47 Posts: 62
    Has anyone had thier oil analyzed? I'm thinking about doing mine, specifically to see if any antifreeze is in the oil
  • bob550kbob550k Posts: 148
    Little beads of anti freeze will build up inside of the oil filler cap if there is anti freeze in with the oil. Just take off the cap and have a look on the bottom of it, it should be pretty easy to spot they are just oily little beads.

    You are looking for emulsification, I hope you don't find any.
  • fear_hopefear_hope Posts: 90
    In the last six weeks my '99 Chevy Venture has been experiencing hard shifts.
    Mostly on upshifts, but occasionally on downshifts also. This rough shifting is
    intermittent. Last week I had transmission service at the dealership where I
    purchased the vehicle, filter and gasket change and about 5-6 quarts of Dextron
    III transmission fluid. My auto has 55,000 miles on it. Does anyone have any
    ideas? What should be my next step in resolving this? Thanks in advance!
  • rayt2rayt2 Posts: 1,208
    There was a Tech Service Bulletin for harsh shifts issued a while back by GM. If you failed to mention this to dealer prior to warranty expiration or the problem just started it is now an out of pocket expense for you unless you have a good repor w/service manager. Good Luck

    Ray T.
  • offhamoffham Posts: 344
    Edmunds has the 2003 posted and very little change other than a new model called LT Entertainer which after a quick glance, does not seem anything more than a name.

    I see leather heated seats are available, which I recall was only available on one of the others Silo.
  • autolover3autolover3 Posts: 53
    I'll give it a look, Thanks.
  • I have a 94 Pontiac Transport (110,000 miles). The engine has started cutting out when accelerating (at 10 to 25 MPH. I had the fuel pump and filters replaced. Still stalls. Garage is perplexed and do not know what to do. Computer does not seem to have any answers. It also seems to be starting out in high gear, rather than low. If manually shift gears, accelerates better but watching the tach can still see needle dropping as engine keeps trying to stall.

    I saw a similar problem posted in the other forum. Any help?

    I used to be RailraodCPA but lost my password and had to re register. I finally got my 2002 Thunder and love it. Only 5000 miles now.
  • Does anyone have the full text to these TSB's:

    00-00-89-027A JAN 02 Interior - New Odor Elimination Product
    01-01-38-011 OCT 01 A/C System - Proper Use to Achieve Maximum Cooling
    02-08-56-001 FEB 02 PASS-KEY III - Revised Relearn Procedure
    00-08-64-007 JUN 00 Front Door Window - Inoperative/Slow or Noisy

    If so would you post here or e-mail to me at
  • jpc47jpc47 Posts: 62
    I'm going to have my oil changed Monday and I'm going to send a sample off to Blackstone. The reason is I thik the oil is getting dirty too fast. It's also losing a half a quart between oil changes.
  • Everyone~
    Do your gears shift very smoothly? Or do you feel the gear changes? Is it sometimes a little bump or is that really abnormal?
  • catamcatam Posts: 331
    My Venture provides seamless tranny gear changes unless I have the gas pedal on the floor. I wish it had a tach so I could more easily tell what gear it is in.
  • offhamoffham Posts: 344
    I have just come back from the UK and saw a real mongrel.

    It was the LWB version with TRANSPORT on the back with the front grille of the Pontiac, but embossed in the bumpers was the name Chevrolet.

    It was left hand drive, but if I recall it was a version sold in Europe, even under the old dust buster look as well.

    As info, the SWB version was seen in manual format with the UK GM brand Vauxhall, but believe this GM stopped importing from the USA, when a home grown variety was produced.

    Plenty of Town & Country's as well as PT Cruisers on the roads over there in right hand drive configuration.
  • edmdanedmdan Posts: 4
    Thanks again,for your help on my little problems. I did take the van into the dealer for the windshield noise AND a leak (our drought finally ended) only to have them say that it was an after-market item, not installed by GM and so was not covered under new car warrantee! AND so much for "optimum quality" used vehicles (sales gimmick) Local glass shop says they'll reseal for under $60. Also dealer finally grabbed a owners manual from another van so now I can figure the right way to work the seatbelts or change headlamps etc. Again thanks for your quick and accurate replies.
  • jpc47jpc47 Posts: 62
    The tranny on my 98 Venture is not seamless. It's not rough either, I don't think there is a problem.
  • dirkdaddydirkdaddy Posts: 313
    You didn't say what interval you were changing your oil, but even 1quart in 3-4000k miles is not excessive. Newer cars have less grippy piston rings for less friction and greater economy/power, but more oil remains on the cylinder walls and gets burned. You can ask about any dealer of any brand and they will tell you the 1/2 quart use is pretty good.

    You have no problem.

  • jpc47jpc47 Posts: 62
    Guess I'm just used to not adding any between oil changes. I'm more concerned with any antifreeze in the oil. Just sent a sample to Blackstone.
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