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Chevrolet Lumina Maintenance and Repair



  • my DIL has a 96 lumina car. was driving drunk and somehow managed to ram a tree limb up under the car. has had transmission problems ever since. It does not shift correctly. Son, budding mechanic, tried fixing solenoid. not the problem. any ideas?
  • There really isn't too much to replacing it but you have to make sure the system is discharged first. You will need a shop to do this, more than likely. Is is simple after that. You just have to remove the refrigerant lines going to it and remove the bolts on the brackets. Be sure to plug the refrigerant lines with something, so that debris and dirt doesn't get into the lines. If you have a serpentine belt on your model, you will have to loosen the tension to get the belt off of the compressor wheel. After putting the new one on....try and have the same shop recharge the system and check for leaks. I hope this helps some.
  • I`m sure you`ve figured this out by now. I just came across your post. It`s a head gasket, right? And the sound you heard was a piston that had melted and damaged the head. Am I right? It sounds exactly what happened to my `95. I did manage to fix it myself...the only other option was to replace the engine.

  • It was a spun bearing. Re-Built engine came from Northwest Motor Exchange and had approx. 30,000 mile before it spun a bearing. Sold entire car to someone who had engine replaced. Hope they did not get engine from same place and hope they get more than a lousy 30k from it.
    Bought wife a new, used Acura.
  • I have a95 lumina car, and when i start it i hear a clunking noise, when it is in neutral, but when i put into gear, it goes away. Does anyone know if this is the Transmission, or the motor. the car has 216,000 miles on it, and is a v6. thanks

  • 1998 Lumina ; Brake lights do not come on when pressure is put on brakes. Only the light mounted on back window lights up. The rear brake lights work when I turn on the left turn signal. Is this the same issue that someone else here posted. Is the problem the turn signal switch located in the steering colum which will require most people to have a pro replace?
    Thanks !
  • has any one experienced leaking freeze plug on 1996 lumina 3.1 front side of veh. leaking coolant down front side of engine near a/c pump
  • im so lost with my pain in the butt car. can someone please help me.... how do i find an air leak on my 1996 lumina ls? i can hear it leaking from somewhere but not sure where and also if i keepp the car at the same speed for more than maybe ten seconds it feels like its hesitating
  • im so lost with my pain in the butt car. can someone please help me.... how do i find an air leak on my 1996 lumina ls? i can hear it leaking from somewhere but not sure where and also if i keepp the car at the same speed for more than maybe ten seconds it feels like its hesitating
  • need torque specs. for 3.1 engine
  • kmcneishkmcneish Posts: 2
    My dad bought a 2001 Chevy Lumina. Ever sense he got the car the car seemed like it would shift back and forth out of gear to frequently, and when you are going down the highway. The car seems to buck or jerk. Some days it won’t do it some days it will. My dad has had it to seven different mechanics half of them said it did not throw a code on the computer ,the other half said that they didn’t even notice anything when they drove it. Finally my dad took the car into Auto zone and they put a tester on it and it throw a code saying torque converter locking up. He finally said the heck with it and put almost a new transmission and torque converter in it , and the car still does the same thing. Does anybody have any solutions? My dad has thrown close to 3,000 in the car he has also changed the plugs, the wires ,he has checked the coils ,he has replaced the engine temperature sensor, but the car still bucks and jerks going down the highway and it seems like it shifts constantly back and forth from overdrive to drive to frequently.
  • yes, I had the same exact problem happen to me, I had the turn signal switch replaced for $300 at a local garage, and now it works just fine.
  • Thanks to the dexcool extended life antifreeze, I have replaced the intake and cylinder head gaskets, the car had 158K on it. Before the head gasket failed it was throwing a P0401 code. While the engine was torn down I went ahead and replaced the EGR valve too. After cleaning everything out & putting it all back together, after about 1 mile the SES light came on and it is still throwing a P0401 Insufficient flow code. Anyone have an idea what to do now?
  • mcdiarmidmcdiarmid Posts: 13
    First of all, I have 2 Chev products and I don`t believe that Dex-Cool is the reason for the gasket failures. Lawsuits have already been won against GM that implicate the material in the gaskets, not Dex-Cool. I`ve replaced the lower intake and head gaskets on both my Lumina and Impala..... The code your Lumina throws indicates a problem with the EGR valve...since you`ve replaced it, it may be your MAP sensor which monitors the EGR function.
  • I have a 1990 Lumina 3.1 liter, and im having a problem with the rear driver side brake light, the tail light works just the brake light. Ive bought new lights and thats not the problem. Can anyone help me?
  • Hey, does anyone know the access code to reprogram the security lockout?
    I took it to a Mech and he said that the security lockout has to be recoded to
    the key... is there a way to bypass it or something? :sick:
  • troubled2utroubled2u Posts: 2
    I have a 2001 Lumina and well the darn two break lights do not work however the thrid top mount does work. I checked the fuses and the area in which the fuse ets in for corrosion and everything works and looks fine. I put in all new bulbs and still nothing. I checked the wiring harness and well it is working fine too so can someone please help this disabled man out, sure would appreciate it. :confuse:
  • sifuenjasifuenja Posts: 1
    Hi I had the excact same problem look behind your spark plug ignition wires there is a hose that is loose you just have to plug it back in that should fix it. If that does not work make sure you have a good seal on you pcv valve you can go to a near by autozone and they can point it out for you. If you need any pics send me an email to and I'll send over pics.Hope this helps!
  • mike356mike356 Posts: 2
    yo if it turns over, go by some starting fluid, and spray it in the vacuum lines, leave them unplugged and then start it. it should start if not do it again for like 3 seconds and should start then. if not then i dont know. i've got bad fuel injectors and i've tried all the cleaners for fuel additives and so on. they dont help the starting process
    i recomend you buy starting fluid and spray the vacuum lines.. IF it starts, plug the lines back in and she'll run just right.
  • ledzep2ledzep2 Posts: 1
    I can't get a straight answer on whether I need a left front strut,left front axle, ball joints or cv joint. How can I tell which I need or who is telling me the truth? :confuse:
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 57,595
    Well let's see.

    STRUT --You can bounce up and down on the left front of the car, listen for noise, or compare the resistance to the other corners of the car. You can also shine a flashlight on the strut and look for oil dripping out of it.

    AXLE -- there is no way NO WAY to visually tell if an axle CV joint is bad unless you disassemble it. But you can see if the axle boot is torn, which may only mean to replace the boot, not the whole joint, and you can drive the car in very tight left or right circles and listen for a steady clunking noise which appears in a regular rotational sound of clunking, and goes away as you straighten the wheel. For a bad LEFT axle CV joint, you'd make tight RIGHT circles.

    BALL JOINT -- a jack can be placed under them and the wear (slack) in them can be measured or estimated. Anything more than 1/8" play up and down is probably too much. If you can't see it move, then no sale.

    If a shop cannot demonstrate to you the basis for their diagnosis, other than crystal ball, intuition, or dart board, then don't believe them.

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  • I gotta 92' chev lumina euro 3.1 and the engine doesn't idle and when we took the vacum tubes off the carb gas seems to be leeking out as soon as you turn the key so its been flooding the engine we think its the fuel pressure regulator but not totally sure someone wanna help out?
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 57,595
    Don't think you have a carburetor on that puppy.

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  • well carb control intake whatever
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 57,595
    Multi Port Fuel Injection

    You could have a sticking injector. Maybe this description will inspire you a bit:

    The fuel supply system begins with gasoline in the fuel tank. An electric fuel pump, located in the fuel tank with the fuel level gauge sending unit, pumps fuel to the fuel rail through an in-line filter. The pump is designed to supply fuel at a pressure above the pressure needed by the injectors. A pressure regulator located on the fuel rail keeps the fuel available to the injectors at a constant pressure. The unused fuel is returned to the fuel tank by a separate line.

    The ECM uses voltage inputs from several sensors to determine how much fuel to give the engine. The fuel is delivered under several conditions, called "Modes." All modes are controlled by the ECM, and are described below.

    Starting Mode:
    When the ignition is first turned "ON," the Electronic Control Module (ECM) turns "ON" the fuel pump relay for two seconds, allowing the fuel pump to build up system pressure. If the engine is immediately started, the fuel pump will continue to operate. If the key is left in the "ON" position, but the engine is not started, the ECM will turn the pump "OFF." The fuel pump will remain "OFF" until the ECM detects the crank signal, or in the case of a faulty fuel pump relay, the oil pressure switch detects approximately 4 psi of oil pressure which will then bypass the fuel pump relay.

    Fuel delivery from the port injectors (which deliver fuel in all operating modes) is controlled by changing the amount of time the injectors are turned on or "pulsed" by the ECM. The ECM checks the coolant temperature sensor, throttle position sensor, and the crank signal, and determines the proper air/fuel ratio for starting. This ranges from 1.5:1 at -36°C (-33°F) to 14.7:1 at 94°C (201°F).

    Clear Flood Mode:
    If the engine floods, clear it by pushing the accelerator all the way down. The ECM then turns "OFF" the injectors. The ECM holds this injector flow rate as long as the throttle stays wide open and the engine rpm is below 600. If the throttle position becomes less than 65%, the ECM returns to the starting mode.

    Run Mode:
    The run mode has two conditions, called "OPEN LOOP" and "CLOSED LOOP."

    OPEN LOOP: When the engine is first started, and engine speed is above 400 rpm, the system goes into "OPEN LOOP" operation. In "OPEN LOOP," the ECM ignores the signal from the Oxygen sensor, and calculates the air/fuel ratio based on inputs from the coolant temperature, throttle position, and the mass air flow (MAF) sensors.

    The system will stay in "OPEN LOOP" until the following conditions are met:

    1. The Oxygen sensor has a varying voltage output, showing that it is hot enough to operate properly. (This depends on temperature.)
    2. The Coolant temperature is above a specified temperature.
    3. A specified amount of time has elapsed after starting the engine. CLOSED LOOP: The specified operating conditions vary with different engines, and are stored in the memory calibration module (Mem-Cal). When these conditions are met, the system goes into "CLOSED LOOP" operation. In "CLOSED LOOP," the ECM calculates the air/fuel ratio (injector on-time) based on the signal from the Oxygen sensor. This allows the air/fuel ratio to stay very close to 14.7:1.

    Acceleration Mode:
    The ECM responds to rapid changes in throttle position and air flow, and provides extra fuel.

    Deceleration Mode:
    The ECM responds to changes in throttle position and air flow, and reduces the amount of fuel. When deceleration is very fast, the ECM can cut off fuel completely for short periods.

    Battery Correction Mode:
    When battery voltage is low, the ECM can compensate for the weak spark by:

    1. Increasing the amount of fuel delivered.
    2. Increasing the idle speed.
    3. Increasing the ignition dwell time.

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  • So how do you think i should go about fixing that how would i do it?
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 57,595
    I guess you could start by checking fuel pressure at the fuel rail using a fuel pressure gauge, to see if it's too high. You probably need a workshop manual if you're going to tear into the fuel injection system on your own.

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  • Well what are the odds that its the fuel pressure regulator compared to the odds of it being a sticking injector?
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 57,595
    That's a good question. I don't really have the experience with that car to answer with any legitimacy.

    Why don't you re-post your original question, with all the details, to our Answers Department? Maybe one of the technicians who visit there has a better idea for you:


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