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Buick Century Maintenance and Repair



  • 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-
  • 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.
  • has a component location finder on there site. Check it out.
  • 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 Posts: 127
    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!
  • 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.
  • 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 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 Posts: 127
    Thanks, cstubbs, I'll give that a try. :)
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • 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?
  • the car makes clicking sounds before it doesnt work. Everything lights up in the dashboar.

    anyone know the solution to this problem?
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • This is a common problem. You need to replace the driver side window controller. It's not too expensive.
  • try checking your ignition fuse
  • doggaldoggal 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.
  • 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 :)
  • 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
  • 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.
  • 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
  • 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!
  • 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 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.
  • Hi,
    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.
  • 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.
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