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Buick Park Avenue Maintenance & Repair



  • I have a '90 park ave that has been giving be some tranny issues and I can't seem to find anybody that has been able to answer my question... :cry: It runs and drives fine except for 2nd gear. When it goes to shift into second gear it will either shift ok and then kick out or it just never engages for a couple of seconds then it slowly engages. If you let off the gas and let the RPM drop then accelerate again it will engage and then drive fine again till you are accelerating and hit second gear then you have to do it all over again. It's a constant thing and I keep thinking that it about has to be something electrical but I don't know. :confuse: I know that this is an issue that buick has had for several years now cause I've known other people (my mother being one of them) that had the same problem with there cars. Not just park ave's. Can anyone tell me what I need to check or what might be causing this? I have had the tranny flushed and new filter and fluid put in and that did nothing to help. I've been thinking clutch but it just seems really odd that so many buicks that I know of have had this very same problem. Any help would be greatly appreciated. I know my way around a vehicle fairly well and I'm on a tight budget. thanks for your time and help. :shades:
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America I70 & I75 Posts: 23,313
    Have the motor mounts/transmission mount been checked by someone knowledgeable?

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

  • cpenneycpenney Posts: 1
    Have a 98 park ave ultra. When i put on the a/c the passenger side is cold and the driv er side blows hotair. Anybody else have this problem or know the cause.
  • 6 months ago check eng light came on. The code indicated a camshaft sensor loss of signal: however, car ran fine. Recently car started to barely run like it wasn't hitting on all 6 cylinders. I left it over night in a parking lot. The next day it cranked and ran okay until 1 mile from home then it acted once again like it wasn't running on all cylinders. I changed the cam shaft sensor and cleared the code. This didn't help and same code came up after repair. Anyone have a suggestion what to do next. Car has 208,000 miles.
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America I70 & I75 Posts: 23,313
    You don't give the year. I've read about camshaft sensors and crankshaft sensors. The crankshaft sensors seem difficult to diagnose. 208000 miles is a great success story for any car to still be running! Buicks and 3800s can do it. I can give you other forum sources for help if you contact my email. Click on the imidazol97 and read the profile for my email.

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

  • The buick is a 91 Park Ave. Keith, I could not figure out how to email you for your assistance. [email protected]
  • mary32mary32 Posts: 1

    I have a 1999 Buick Park Avenue and the front ashtray will not stay closed (up). Any ideas on how to fix this? Since I don't use the ashtray, I would prefer not looking at it all the time. Thanks for your help! :)
  • trymetryme Posts: 1
    I need to know where the crank position sensor is located on my 98 park ave
  • Hi, I just noticed that as of today my power door lock switches from inside no longer are working to lock or unlock. It still locks when going from Park to Drive and such and they even work with the remote but not from inside. What happened??? Is it a breaker or a fuse??? Please help
    1992 Park Ave in OKC
  • gcraiggcraig Posts: 11
    Hi Mary32,

    I have had this same issue on my 1998 Park Avenue. The problem is that the latch is broken on the ash tray assembly itself. There is a little tang on the ashtray that compresses a catch in the dashboard-side of the mechanism to hold the door up. It cannot be repaired by replacing the tang so you 'll need to replace the entire door assembly. I have done this and had the door break again! Poor design. I have yet to locate another good one but keep trying at on-line junk yards. The dealer wants about $75 to fix it and repair shops won't touch it saying, "that's a dealer item". In the meantime the ashtray hangs open! The next time I fix it I am not going to use the ashtray at all for fear it will break again.
    Best of luck to you!

  • 1995ultra1995ultra Posts: 1
    I have a 1995 ultra, which my son now drives. It has been having a problem with the engine faltering under acceleration. I have had it at the dealer who found rust caused pin holes in the return line to the gas tank, which is near the right rear wheel well. New gas lines are not available and the dealer did get a line from a junk yard and pieced it into the system. This seemed to help a little but the problem has never really gone away. Has anyone else had this faltering problem? If so, what is the solution?
  • The check engine light had been on for some time but car ran rough occacsionally but gas mileage was fine. My buick park avenue, 1998, was draining coolant, which we replaced. after several days, I drove a 10 mile drive, waited three hours and white smoke came out the exhaust. I drove to an auto parts place and they added water to the overflow tank. the engine temp had risen to 240 degrees. The car sat for one month and now will not start. though it tries..... Battery is strong for I disconnected it during month of inactivity. any thoughts about what problem may be, and is it worth repairing..... We need this car for a student coming to live with us to drive. link title
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America I70 & I75 Posts: 23,313
    Your car had coolant disappearing and that was warning sign to immediately find the problem. You don't say if you've had the car since it was new so we don't know if it's been repaired before. The plastic upper intake can develope leaks that allow the coolant to get into the air stream that goes into the motor. That may be the cause of the roughness which probably occurred when the car was hot and the coolant was under pressure from the radiator cap and that pressure forces coolant into the intake faster. So the car developes a roughness.

    Since the turned off the car and let it sit, there probably is coolant that had gone into the intake area, onto the valves, and coolant probably was in the oil. The coolant going in after you turned off the motor has probably filled a combustion chamber and hydrolocked the motor. Or if it is turning over, the plugs may have coolant on them keeping them from firing.

    The upper intake is repairable for $500 and less at a local good mechanic. Your major concern is that the coolant in the oil may have damaged the bearings due to the acidic nature while sitting.

    The overheating may be just because the coolant in the radiator was low and should have been refilled. PUtting it into the overflow reservoir doesn't get it back into the radiator immediately.

    You need to have the car towed and checked out if you don't do repairs yourself.

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

  • saw5saw5 Posts: 8
    My son purchased a used 1994 buick pa for a dealership on 7/7/07. It now shuts completely down after about 10 min. of running time. Sometimes it will re-start right away and other times it must set for 20 - 30 min. This is a bad deal since he used all of his cash to purchase the car, only put 10 or so miles on it before this happen and dealership will not take it back.

    Any suggestion on what may be causing this?
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America I70 & I75 Posts: 23,313
    Get the codes scanned at Advance Auto, Autozone, PepBoys, nearby. You may be able to scan codes on that with a paper clip shorting the A and B pins under the dash then turn the key on. I lose track of which cars are OBD I and OBD II that require a scanner.

    Most likely is crankshaft position sensor which doesn't seem to clearly show up in codes from what I've read on other sites.

    I believe someone suggested spraying water on the sensor area behiind the crank pulley at 3 o'clock as a test. That cools it down. You might try visually locating the sensor first.

    Is the fuel pump still pumping when the turn the key on? It should pump for a few seconds then shut off. Is there fuel at the Schrader valve on the motor on the fuel lines? Use a cloth to catch gas and see if it's as highly pressurized as when the car first starts or if it's lost pressure.

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

  • Thanks for a quick response.... I will arrange to get it towed to a reliable, well recommended mechanic..... I appreciate your help.
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    Come back and let us know how it works out.
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America I70 & I75 Posts: 23,313
    Hopefully if it's upper intake manifold leaking it's in time to avoid damage to bearings from sitting with coolant in the oil. You didn't mention anything about coolant dripping from the motor so that eliminates waterpump for coolant loss for me.

    Because I've heard about bearing damage from running a motor with a leak too long in other discussions, I'd recommend having someone check about what's happening. I hope there isn't damage. The good news is the motor isn't hydrolocked (cylinder filled with coolant) because it seems to be turning over. Hydrolocked motors break starters and do other damage.

    Not starting sounds like a friend's car I helped with that had coolant on plugs from an intake that was leaking and repaired. It wouldn't start up after the 4 days because the plugs were wet.

    The chugging sort of diesel like sounds like his car before he replaced the upper manifold.

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

  • saw5saw5 Posts: 8

    Thank you for the help. We check the ign. module first and it was o.k. Pump and relay were good. The car is OBDll so it does require a scanner so we could not jump the circuit. So, after about 4 hours of trial and error we purchase the crankshaft position sensor and we were going to install it Sunday, When my son said he saw one message on another site were a man used the replacement key (2nd set of keys) to start/run the veichle. He was having a similar problem. Like that would be the problem. But, go ahead and try.

    So far the car has not stalled and runs great. I did not know that the chip within the keys could go bad, Or is this just a fluke.
  • The dealer replaced a right front motor mount on my 2000 PA to cure a "clunking" problem. It turns out that the problem is in the transmission and mot a mount problem. Nonetheless, the dealer insists that the mount was bad and the $421 that they charged to replace it was justified.

    I have the old mount and don't think that there is anything wrong with it. I have mot been able to find any specifications for the mount (GM was no help at all!). Does anyone know of a way to check the old mount other than to remove the one that they put in and compare it to the old one?

  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America I70 & I75 Posts: 23,313
    If the chip in the key doesn't make good contact or the wires are breaking in the steering column where it pivots for the tilt wheel, the resistance will be wrong. The car won't crank when you move the key to crank. The third time you try, the VATS will lock out the start for 3 minutes or 4 minutes. After that it will try again to read a new chip in he key.

    If the resistance changes while the motor is running, the system will set a code that there's a problem reading the key resistance and will stop trying to use that as a security check. The security light will be on all the time. But the car will crank and start normally.

    It doesn't sound like your problem.

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

  • coyoterocoyotero Posts: 1
    Can anyone tell me how to remove the passenger side door panel. I have a slow power window and would like to try to lube the mechanical parts.
  • dnr98dnr98 Posts: 2
    I had the same problem, so I drilled a small hole and pulled the needle over the peg to the correct position. It worked fine for a few days. Unfortunately the needle kept moving around erradicaly and had to use the paper clip again a couple of times to fix the needle. I replaced the fuel pump which took care of the erratic needle. When I took out the fuel pump I noticed contact points on fuel arm/float were worn out.
  • Hi,
    I'm getting a GM code P1441..."evaporative emission system flow during non-purge". Car is 1997 Buick Park Avenue with a 3.8. Can you give me any clues as to what is wrong. Thanks for any help, Mike.
  • The engine could not be salvaged for less than $4800 for repairs. I surely appreciate all the advice and encouragement from this forum. The mechanic even tried to find a used engine. My next step is selling to a junk yard or donating to charity. I shall miss this car.
    Thanks for your help.
  • dnr98dnr98 Posts: 2
    I have a 98 Park Avenue that does gives me a multiple cylinder misfire code constantly and does not have any power when I accelerate. I have replaced plugs, wires, module, coils, fuel pump and fuel regulator. I cannot find any vacum leaks which I suspect that may be my problem. The upper plenum was replaced about a year ago. Any ideas on what to check before I take it to a professional?
  • Okay, I have been having problems with my transmission. The service engine soon light will turn on while I'm driving, and by the end of the day it will turn back off.

    -- Occasionally when I start the car and put it in drive it won't move, until I accelerate between 2000-3000 rpm.

    -- Also, every once in a while, when I approach a stop light, the engine vibrates and shakes while I'm holding the brakes down, until I put it into neutral. This doesn't happen as often as it used to.

    -- When I'm accelerating from a low to high speed the car feels like it chugs...chugging my gas away. This seems to happen under 30 mph.

    The transmission has been rebuilt about 10-15k miles ago (when the problems started). I've used a computer: two codes saying "torque converter switch stuck". I've had the car taken in to the mechanic who rebuilt the transmission. After three months of stalling, he said there were filings in the radiator, and so he flushed them out. Obviously that wasn't the problem because the light keeps coming back.

    Can anyone tell me what the problem is, whether or not I'd have to take the transmission out, and how much this might cost?
  • pau03pau03 Posts: 14
    I have a 2003 Park Avenue Ultra and the "service stability system" diagnostic message pops up every time I drive the car. It doesn't happen at the same time, each time. It is somewhat random. I haven't been able to determine if it happens on rough roads or in heavy turns. It just seems to turn on whenever it feels like it.

    I've put voltmeters on the steering position, yaw and lateral acceleration sensors. All seem to be giving reasonable readings while driving. I was expecting one of them to go to 5V or ground if it went bad. Nothing seems out of the ordinary, although I'm not exactly sure what the relationship is between the two channels of the steering sensor.

    I'm wondering if there is an intermittant inside the brake control module that I can't get to. Does anyone have any ideas? Thanks.
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America I70 & I75 Posts: 23,313
    Are the 17 inch rims factory quality rims? If not, they may be contributing.

    You are on the right track, in my opinion, with the change in temperature observation. The tire pressures change with ambient temperature and with the medium (tire) temperature which changed the internal air pressure as well as the behavior of the rubber portion.

    Go to this page and read about road force balancing.

    It will explain that while a wheel and tire may be balanced off the car, when it's rolling with weight on the tire the crush amount of the tire varies. That causes the wheel to move up and down and you reach a speed where it begins to resonate with the previous bounce force and increases.

    You may have a rim which tests as off round and a tire may be imperfect. Sometimes a knowledgeable tech on the Hunter 9700 will move the tire relative to the rim so the forces cancel each other out. The problem here is something many companies have had, not just GM. GM may have been early with the Aurora chassis and its stiffness. When you have very light components, like A-arms, they rreact more to up and down motion from the wheels rolling. The stiffness of the frame (unibody) transmits this.

    The solution was to have Michelin tires because they are the best made for uniformity. Many manufacturers are way behind the quality standard needed by today's cars. Then find a dealer of Buicks or Cadillacs because they have worked with this problem. Find one where the people seem interested in finding your problem and fixing it. It may cost more but be less trouble than working with low Joe at the local discount tire store who bought a Hunter 9700 as a profit center. Be aware some tires were replaced on Park Avenues with Michelins as I recall to try to troubleshoot the problems. I bought an 03 LeSabre with Michelins because it was essentially the same car as the STS with Michelins at the time (there are differences in quality, I know).

    The alignment is also a factor. My service manager started life as the alignment person, so he knows alignment. He tweaked the alignment on the 2nd visit for some road feel vibration. I told him on long upslopes on smooth fresh asphalt on interstate it would begin to vibrate but at the same speeds with no pull on the wheels nothing happened. The slight pull changes the front wheel positions and alignment.

    Found the Rear toein was off. Set fronts at perfect setting--not just within specs. It has to be at the optimum. And the vibration from the Symmetrys was gone. As the tires aged after 15000 they seemed to become more even. I suspect the belts change with age and flexing those miles.

    There's a search page on the hunter page that will help you find all the local stores who have Hunter 9700s.

    Good luck. I don't know about the quality of Khumhos that you have. I know the Goodyears are not up to snuff at the time in 03 when my service manager was fixing mine. I beleive that's what was on some Park Aves originally.

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

  • pau03pau03 Posts: 14
    Thanks for the detailed reply. The Kumho's were fairly inexpensive and they got fairly decent reviews from most people. There were a few complaints about flat spotting and I do get that problem too. Even when the balance seemed OK I still had to drive about 10 miles on the highway before the bad shake went away.

    I think I'll give the road force balance a try. It just seems kind of expensive to have to pay $60 to get 4 wheels balanced. But if it solves the problem it will be worth it.
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