Buick Century Maintenance and Repair



  • doggaldoggal Member Posts: 17
    I had an overheating problem too on my buick century 1994 (41000 original miles). Had the radiator flushed. The light would still come on from time to time. Took it back to the shop they changed the thermostat. They also reflushed the radiator, because after they flushed it the first time they put some kind of cleaner in it and that really cleaned it but at the same time caused a motherload of deposit at the bottom of the radiator, causing it to have only 1/3 actual radiator capacity. After the second flush that all came out and it seems to be doing fine, knock on wood.
  • doggaldoggal Member Posts: 17
    I am new to this board. I have a Buick Century 94 with 41000 original miles. This morning suddenly the front windows do not want to open. Thought may be because it is cold, had the heater on for a while still nothing.
    The back ones do open, but one is very slow.
    Can someone explain what is going on.
    Hope I do not need a trip to the shop. Just spend my Christas money there over the weekend getting the brakes fixed.
    Any help greatly appreciated.
  • tlon7tlon7 Member Posts: 7
    I just got a pristine 1995 Buick Century with a 3.1, V6 engine. I had recently purchased an Interstate MT 34 (Megatron II) for another car, but I'm now getting rid of the former car and wonder if this battery is good for the Century. I looked up the recommended battery list for the Buick Century on the Interstate Battery site and it did not mention this battery. It's a shame if I can't use it because I spent $75, it has a 75 month warranty, :surprise: and I've run it about five miles. The Cranking info and voltage specs seem correct. Can someone help fast! I'm donating the other car to MADD on Tuesday, nov. 28.
  • thatgirl84thatgirl84 Member Posts: 1
    My grandmother gave me her 92 Buick Century. For the most part its been a very reliable car, and she kept it very well maintained. I recently had to get new brake pads and replace the starter and the computer. Other than that, its been pretty good to me. I went out a few minutes ago to go somewhere, and as soon as I started the car, a very loud rattling coming from the belts or that area. I went in checked the belts, nothing seems loose. This isn't something that's been coming on, it just started out of nowhere. I had gone somewhere earlier this morning and it was fine. Any thoughts or suggestions? I really don't have the money to take it to a shop!!
  • lpen41lpen41 Member Posts: 7
    Checked the cooling fan relay and it's fine. The wiring diagram shows a 10 amp in line fuse which I suspect is the culprit. Does any one know where this in line fuse is located? Is it near or above the PCM/ECM behind the dashboard?
    Any help will be greatly appreciated.
  • lpen41lpen41 Member Posts: 7
    based on what you wrote and just a guess. the belt tensioner may be worn. But that is a guess.
    Also, I had an air conditioner compressor pulley go bad and it sounded like a very loud scraping with the A/C off and would go away when I turned on the A/C.
    Just Guessing but I hope it helps.
  • jackccjackcc Member Posts: 1
    Recently, I find my car (2002 buick century) don't start properly after I just turned off the engine. when the engine is cold, every thing is OK. anyone has this problem? How to solve it?
  • cstubbscstubbs Member Posts: 3
    The interior lights continually blow the 10 amp fuse leaving us in the dark. Does any one know how to fix the problem??? I have replaced the fuse several times - that just does not work. Oh yes I have had to replace all 4 window motors - I hope the replacements last longer than the original at a cost of $400. per window. The windows were almost never opened - parked inside every night and never allowed rain inside - yet they failed with less than 30,000 miles (6yrs old). Any help out there with the interior lights (tired of high dollar repairs)??
  • ryan456789ryan456789 Member Posts: 5
    I have a 1999 Buick Century 3.1L V6. It has just over 120k miles on it.

    I purchased it, and didnt even know it had a tick which would occur after the car was running for a minute... and it never goes away. It is harder to hear at higher RPM's (over 2,000) but it's still there.

    I notice a lot of people have problems with engine tick at cold startup, but I have not seen any people post about engine tick AFTER a cold startup

    What is wrong? Is it bad? Easy to fix? Expensive? Will my motor last? What should I do?


    I purchased this car for winter use because I wanted to store my 1999 Grand Prix GTP 3.8L Supercharged V6

  • lpen41lpen41 Member Posts: 7
    You will have to find the short. Never a fun thing to do. You will have take the time and trace all the sockets, wires and switch to check for shorts.
  • lanakiveelanakivee Member Posts: 1
    I am trying to change the thermostat on a 96 Century 3100 SFI V6, but am unsure where it is located. I dont have alot of technical knowledge of engines, but can anyone explain easily where the thermostat is and how to go about changing it? Thanks-
  • ryan456789ryan456789 Member Posts: 5
  • lpen41lpen41 Member Posts: 7
    Have a 94 buick century 3100 sfi. Noticed the temperature gauge up in the very high normal range. Found that the fans were not kicking on. There is no signal voltage going to the relays. The wiring diagram shows a 10 amp in line fuse going to the relay coils. I can't seem to find that inline fuse holder and it's driving me batty. Please, Does anyone know where they hide that thing? Also, it has a temperture sensor, but I can't see if there is also a temperature switch on the engine. Does it have one?
    For the time being I've wired a switch to the primary fan but I really don't like rigging things. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
  • lpen41lpen41 Member Posts: 7
    www.autozone.com has a component location finder on there site. Check it out.
  • pfendleypfendley Member Posts: 1
    I have a 1998 Buick-Century. I discovered a water/coolant leak and the Shell gas station mechanic replaced my water pump after a pressure check. I thought all was well until my car died on the highway (about 2 months latter), towed back to same Shell gas station. Now (same mechanic) he says my engine needs to be replaced or rebuilt,a $1,000.00 to $2,000.00 repair job. He thinks the cause is the head gasket. Was this the problem from the beginning? Is this mechanic culpable for not noticing the leak was still there after he replaced my water pump?

    The blue book value on my car is @ $2,300.00.
    Trade in value is $500.00 which was an offer from one car dealership.

    I don't know if I want to have the engine rebuilt, replaced with a new or used engine or just trade it in for whatever I can get for it.

    Any suggestions?
  • kreuzerkreuzer Member Posts: 131
    1990 Buick Century Custom, 3.1v6 has 101,000mi. While driving the car and most noticably when turning a corner, you can hear a swoosh sound coming from behind the dash. It almost sounds as if the coolant is swishing from side-to-side. Does anyone know what this could be? I've never heard this before :confuse: . Thanks!
  • cstubbscstubbs Member Posts: 3
    I had the same problem with my chevy truck - the problem is the anti-freeze in the radiator is low - fill the radiator up completely and the "swooshing" sound will stop.
  • cstubbscstubbs Member Posts: 3
    What does a short look like? will there be a bare wire somewhere? What could be wrong with a socket? Is there a meter or something that can test a wire for a short?
  • doggaldoggal Member Posts: 17
    I also have a power window problem. Looked in the fusebox in the glove compartment but there seems to be just 1(one) 30A fuse/circuit breaker for all 4 windows, Can't seem to find another fuse for the windows. The front windows suddenly do not work, but the back ones do work. Kinda silly 1 fuse for all windows, or is there a different kind of fuse somewhere else. I ordered the Hanes book for this car Century 1994, but haven't received it yet.
    Any ideas what I can do or look for. I do appreciate any help I can get.
  • kreuzerkreuzer Member Posts: 131
    Thanks, cstubbs, I'll give that a try. :)
  • uhura92uhura92 Member Posts: 3
    have you tryed replacing the fuse? I discovered just yesterday that there is an ignition fuse, (a #10) without it your car will not make a sound.
  • lpen41lpen41 Member Posts: 7
    Yes, it was the head gasket. Known problem in the the 3.1 liter engine and possibly the other v-6's. That mechanic should have known to advise you of that. The head gasket replacement would have ran to about $800.00 to repair. And GM wonders why they are in trouble!!! They knew of this problem for years and still don't own up to it.
  • lpen41lpen41 Member Posts: 7
    A short can be a wire thats pinched by a screw or piece of metal, a dryrotted wire jacket touching ground, bad harness or light socket, frayed wire causing a bridge, anywhere hot is touching ground where it should not. You have to take the time and trace the wires back, never fun to find but sometimes you may get lucky.
  • mrshookmrshook Member Posts: 1
    it will some times idle til you give it gas it acts like it is starving for gas some time it will partially rev other times it just dies I changed the fuel filter, which it was clogged but that does not seem to have fixed my problem. any one have any suggestions?
  • car1648car1648 Member Posts: 1
    the car makes clicking sounds before it doesnt work. Everything lights up in the dashboar.

    anyone know the solution to this problem?
  • buickmommabuickmomma Member Posts: 4
    I have the same problem with my 1999 Buick Century whenever I have my tires changed or rotated. I was told that this was a "typical kink" with the Century models. To resolve your issue, you just have to get your system reset. The major issue is finding a mechanic who know how to reset it. The reset is not "common" knowledge.
  • buickmommabuickmomma Member Posts: 4
    Your head gasket was probably not the first issue. There is a "S" curve hose under the manifold that probably had the leak. If the problem persisted, you probably blew the head gasket. The water pump probably didn't need to be replaced. You should try and get your money back.
  • buickmommabuickmomma Member Posts: 4
    It is undeniably your dimmer switch. Get ready to pay. The part alone will run you about $270.00. There are some online sights that have the part for $240.00.
  • buickmommabuickmomma Member Posts: 4
    This is a common problem. You need to replace the driver side window controller. It's not too expensive.
  • uhura92uhura92 Member Posts: 3
    try checking your ignition fuse
  • doggaldoggal Member Posts: 17
    :confuse: Thanks for the info. Can I do this myself? If so how do I go about it. I recently purchased the Haynes GM automotive repair amnual, but there is nothing in there about window repair. What is this controller suppose to look like?
    Can I get info on the web or so? I know it's a lot of ??? but i hate to go to the shop if I can do it myself even if it takes me hours. Any help appreciated.
  • noodlesknowlesnoodlesknowles Member Posts: 15
    I'm having an issue with my lights(inside and out) and I'd like some input.
    I was attempting to install a new tailight lens on my car, and afterward discovered that for some reason the lights on the rear passenger side were brighter than the lights on the rear drivers side.
    So I went back to Advanced auto parts and they told me they didn't know, so I grabbed some fuses and a new flasher. I traded out the appropriate fuses, changed the flasher, and the lights now work, but for some reason its as if they are always on as bright as they can possibly go, and when I turn my right signal on, the entire car flashes, all lights front and back, my radio lights and some of my dash lights!
    Keep in mind this may have been an existing problem before I changed the lens as this is a new car to me, and had been sitting previously for around 6 months. Any help would be appreciated, thanks!! :confuse:
    P.S. My neighbor seems to think maybe a ground came loose somewheres and is screwing with everything, I'm hoping thats all it is :)
  • noodlesknowlesnoodlesknowles Member Posts: 15
    ok so I figured out that the tail lights are supposed to have a couple different bulbs, a fact that the good people at advanced auto parts apparently have no clue about, anyway the single filament bulb was in a double filament spot, relaying the electricity back through the car and therefore making all of my lights blink at the same time, lol, stupid easy problem, fixed! :D
  • tdk2007tdk2007 Member Posts: 1
    On my brand new 2001 century, already had a click.
    The dealer shop and every service technician i have spoken with about it since, says this is nothing to worry about.
    Just a nuisance!
    Also, brakes have always squeaked a little in humid conditions.
  • eorourkeeorourke Member Posts: 1
    I can not find any books on my Buick and I am have problems with wiring can some one provide me a diagram for a 1993 buick century
  • noodlesknowlesnoodlesknowles Member Posts: 15
    weird I almost have my car on the road and then when I started her up the other day I am having the exact same problem as doggal, my back two windows go down super slow and my front windows won't open at all, I want to know the same thing, can I do this myself?? I got my car for free so I am not really interested in spending a ton of dough on this, but I love tinkering and can handle lots of different electrical work, thanks for any info!
  • mrkris8912mrkris8912 Member Posts: 2
    My digital odometer in the dash area will not light up anymore, i can't see it nor can I see the gear selection I am in. Does anyone know if it is a LED light that went out or if it is something that can be replaced? All other warning lights and instrument lights work.
  • molerjmolerj Member Posts: 9
    I was having a similar problem. I replaced the dimmer switch. It is about an hours labor & the cost of the switch, 250 to 300 dollars. I got a used steering column from a salvage yard & removed the dimmer switch. It cost me $80.00. Replacement of switch involves disabling air bag, (very easy). Removing air bag, steering wheel & trim covers.
  • sbarkersbarker Member Posts: 4
    I also have that problem and had it checked by a transmission expert. He said it's a common problem with the
    2000-2002 buick century's and other gm cars that use the same transmission. The only real fix is to remove and replace the transmission with an upgraded unit. The cost is 2500.00 but comes with a 100,000 warrenty. I know it's a big cost but 2500 is cheaper than 20,000 for a new car
    my Buick is a 2000 with 46000 miles.
  • samuel5samuel5 Member Posts: 1
    My car after startup heats up like normal but the guage goes right into the red doesnt appear to be overheating but the fan doesnt kick on either, i changed the thermostat, flushed the radiator and filled i changed the temp sensor is there anything else to check besides the relay and possibly the fan is broke that would cause this problem and if it were the relay where is it located thanks for any help.
  • caroline2caroline2 Member Posts: 5
    I too am having a difficulty with my 96 Buick Century (Custom.)
    One day, a few months ago, there was a puff of smoke coming from the steering column. Immediately, my left turn signal was gone. For a time, I managed to tweak the exposed wire, and the signal would work. (This only happened after the car had warmed up.) Now this does not work, and few people know what a hand signal looks like! As I truly believe in signalling, I have got to get this fixed. Inspection is next month, Is this a minor electrial problem? My other signal works fine.
    Thank you in advance for any helpful advice! I just pray this is not a major fix, as our car has cost us plenty, especially since she was paid off.
  • noodlesknowlesnoodlesknowles Member Posts: 15
    does it blink at all? or does it just stay solid? sounds like maybe you need a new signal arm or maybe just need a little rewiring??
  • caroline2caroline2 Member Posts: 5
    Thank you noodlesknowles!
    When it worked, it blinked. It now now longer works.
    It seems to not be making contact. I hope it is the rewiring.
  • mprdavemprdave Member Posts: 3
    My 1993 Century 3.3L with 47000 miles also ticks after warm-up and does not stop. When I listened close to the motor it sounds like its coming from the intake somewhere. Have you heard from anybody on what this is.
  • noodlesknowlesnoodlesknowles Member Posts: 15
    I googled them and found my diagram for my 94 v6, I can't seem to find the website so you might have to look a bit but you can get it for free, if you can't find it msg me and i'll scan mine for ya, its a 94 but it should be the same :P
  • ryan456789ryan456789 Member Posts: 5
  • ryan456789ryan456789 Member Posts: 5
    went to a dealership they think its either bad piston slap or a rod... they said it could last 5 days or 5 years, but so far it really hasnt gotten worse and its been about 2,000 miles since the post.
  • crisamagcrisamag Member Posts: 1
    Hi, I have the same problem...the vibration..please,,,if you have a solution...please send me an e-mail with your opinion...thank you sir...
  • drumarodrumaro Member Posts: 2
    yea man thats just gm
  • drumarodrumaro Member Posts: 2
    yea i gotta 02' century and it does the same thing. i've had it re'aligned, new shocks, balanced and rotated tired and pretty much all i can come up with is the cv joint. cause it only does it when you accelerate or when your turning left. and if someones in the passenger seat then its alot more noticable. this may not be the same problem as yours but it sounded similar so i thought i'd put it out there. does it sound familiar?
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