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Buick Regal



  • tsu670tsu670 Posts: 293
    ["I've changed plugs on my 3800s in leSabres."]

    Now we're talking. Someone with experience!! Thanks!

    I forgot to mention in my earlier (and rather lengthy) response that we should remember to use Anti-seize on the plug threads before screwing them in, and dielectric grease on the wire ends. If installing new wires, put grease on both ends of each wire.

    Actually, even if we don't change the wires, it isn't a bad idea to refresh the grease where they connect at the coil packs, too.
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America I70 & I75 Posts: 21,507
    I did a quick search back--but how many miles are on those wires? They're past due. Get a good OEM quality set from NAPA or your dealer or gmpartsdirect or rockauto. Don't fall for fancy, copper coated, antiarthritis, wires at the box stores. You want OEM level.

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

  • gorfygorfy Posts: 1
    :confuse: i need to replace my rear struts and i'm trying to save to either do it my self or have it done ... i'm trying to figure out the best option but i cant get any... 'solid' estimates. i'm hoping someone can help me with my decision and hopefully and estimate or price for having it done by a mechanic... please help me... my one strut is already busted and i don't know how long i can drive on it before it pops through mt wheel well.... :sick:
    thank you
  • 79customd79customd Posts: 87
    Here is a similar discussion I found on Hope this is what you need :) )

    Replacing the rear struts on these cars is a pain.

    These cars use a leaf spring mounted between the two rear wheels instead of coil springs. There is a special tool that you can use to relieve the tension on the spring or you can just put one jack under the center of the spring and another under the side that you are working on to relieve the tension.

    The struts have brackets attached to them which bolt up to the wheel hub. The bolts are very tight and usually rusted. The top strut bolts can be reached through the trunk if you pull the carpet back.

    The difficult part is that the camber of the rear wheels needs to be set when you tighten the lower strut bolts. The lower strut brackets have slightly oval shaped holes in them and the camber is adjusted by tightening the bolts when the strut bracket and hub are in the proper relation to each other. The problem is that the leaf spring is always trying to push the top of the hub outward while the strut is off and the bolts need to be made very tight (I think factory spec is 125 ft/lb).

    I'm not trying to discourage you from doing the work yourself, just if you do replace the struts yourself you will have to bring the car to an alignment shop to have the camber set anyway. You might as well just have the shop install the struts and save yourself the hassle.
  • 79customd79customd Posts: 87
    My granddad bought a 2002 Buick Centry and the truck sat up for 12 months. That lead to the bad hoses and plugs. Also the 1979 technology wasn't as durable as the more modern stuff and nowhere near as refined.

  • jipsterjipster Louisville, KentuckyPosts: 5,443
    The dealership checked my cooling system, after I brought it in complaining of coolant loss from resevior. I've had to add about a pint every 8 months to a year. They said I had a leak on the upper intake and the water pump. Says its probably burns off before I ever notice it. They "recommended" it get repaired at $1,200. Since the leak is so light, would it harm anything if I just added Dexcool as needed? If I decide to repair...does $1,200 sound like a fair price.
  • yurakmyurakm Posts: 1,345
    It would not pay to repair it if you are going to buy a new car in the near future. If you will drive the same car for the next 10 years, the leak, most probably, will increase, and the repair makes sense.

    I have read several times that fixing the the upper manifold leak costs about $800 at dealerships. However, it looks as the additional $400 is for fixing a separate leak at the water pump.
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America I70 & I75 Posts: 21,507
    A few years back the upper intake manifold AND a waterpump replacement was *850$ at my dealer.

    I'd do just the intake and price shop for somewhere else to do it. Then if the waterpump actually does need replaced I would have it done. It almost sounds like the waterpump is being added to pad the bill while they're in there working.

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

  • jipsterjipster Louisville, KentuckyPosts: 5,443
    Thanks for the feedback. I'm pretty sure the car has had this problem (slow leak) since I bought the car two years ago. I posted a question about this very problem about a year and a half ago in this discussion. I'm going to call an independent shop that we've taken our vehilces to in the past and get a second opinion/estimate.
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America I70 & I75 Posts: 21,507
    Frankly, they'd have to show me the trails of color from the coolant to prove that they needed to replace the intake manifold. A pint in 8 months or a year isn't much. Evaporation and seepage around heater hose connectors or radiator hoses could account for that. I also see some slosh come out the top of the overflow coolant bottle.

    My dealer put pressure on the system and couldn't get it to leak--leaks will be next to the throttle body connection to the intake manifold plastic. No water runs through the rest of it. We coiuld see orange dust from the DexCool in those areas. They also showed me that under the water pump there was a trail of orange from the wick hold that lets water out that gets past the seal at the bearing.

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

  • jipsterjipster Louisville, KentuckyPosts: 5,443
    When I had the cooling system flush and fill back in January, the dealership never spoke of a loss in pressure in the cooling system. So, I find it strange that now they would say there is a leak in the system. I'm wondering if they did the initial pressure test....or if the leak is so small it did not register.

    I see no "color" from coolant anywhere that would indicate a leak. Two suspect areas where "something" has leaked a bit. But, are dried out and haven't gotten worse. At this point in time I don't see myself spending $1,200 on this. Though will continue to keep a close eye on it. Thanks.
  • vegasladyvegaslady Posts: 10
    I'm looking for input from Regal owners. I'm thinking of selling my overrated Honda and getting a Buick. I only drive less than 5000 miles a year so I really want comfort and reliability. Consumer Guide rates Regal as the best of both worlds but I'm concerned about gas mileage. Can anyone give me some advice. I'm also considering the Century but I'm a little worried about American made cars. I had a Chrysler New Yorker that drove me nuts with repairs and I don't want to go through that again. Thanks
  • bporter1bporter1 Posts: 229
    I own a 99 Regal GSE with the supercharged V6. Gas mileage for me is pretty good, but the engine does require premium gas. That might be a concern since gas prices are high, and expected to be even higher. For me overall the ride, handling, and comfort are good. My father owns a 2000 regal LS, same car just different engine and supension setups. I have driven his car, and there is really no difference except in the power dept at the 30mph to 50mph range. I also have driven a few Century's. Again a good car, softer ride, and another engine entirely. If I had to do it again, I would get the LS with the 3800 V6 non supercharged. A good compromise of power, ride, handling, and passenger/ cargo room. The 3800 V6 is a very good engine, one of GM's best. I hope I helped to answer your question. Good luck, and let us know what you decide to do.
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America I70 & I75 Posts: 21,507
    Some of the GM motors, including the 3800 withou supercharger, have intake manifolds that need to be replaced due to the plastic allowing leaks of coolant. Be sure one you buy has had the intake manifold replaced. Demand proof. The date stamp is on the intake manifold if someone knows how to read it to determine if it's been replaced since the car was new.

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

  • exo425exo425 Posts: 15
    In my opinion, I would deffinately choose the Regal over the Century because the Regal is a step above the Century in refinement as well as ride/handling. I have a 91 Regal with a 3.1 engine and i am very happy with it (no gasket leaks). My advice would be to stick with a newer regal (97-04) as those are all equipped with 3.8 engines while Centurys are all equipped with 3.1s. Regals are also a lot sportier especially if you look into a GS supercharged.
  • jipsterjipster Louisville, KentuckyPosts: 5,443
    I've owned both the Buick Century(1994 wagon with the 3.1 engine) and currently a 1999 Regal LS (with the 3.8 engine)
    The Century was quick off the line, but solely lacked the muscle when it came to highway merging and passing. Anything over 45mph was a chore. The Regal 's 3.8 200 hp engine is much stronger...has all the power I would ever need. That said, it has recently developed a possible slow coolant leak in the lower intake gasket.
  • jipsterjipster Louisville, KentuckyPosts: 5,443
    In doing a "search" in this discussion I've noticed many Regal owners to have had problems with coolant leak and problems with lower and upper intake gaskets.

    One post mentions that there was a recall for all 2000-2003 Regals with the 3800 Series 2 engine. Under the recall GM would replace the engine throttle body fastners with redesigned fastners and add cooling system sealant to the radiator.

    A few questions please: Anyone have this done and what was their experience? My 1999 Buick Regal has the same engine as those under recall...any idea why it may not have been included?

    Would having new throttle body fastners and adding cooling system sealant be an option for me?(see my above posts on coolant leak) Sounds a lot cheaper than the $1,200 for lower intake and water pump my dealer recently quoted me.
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America I70 & I75 Posts: 21,507
    The different bolts connecting the throttle body to the UIM were to change how the force was applied and I believe to spread it out more evenly. The sealant was in the motor on you 99 Regal when it left the factory.

    GM had gone away from putting sealant in the motor from the factory because it tended to leave a crud in the overflow tank after a while or early on. People didn't like seeing that in the clear tank so they left it out. But most motors have it in and it seals miniscule leaks from the factory assembly.

    I added the sealant, two tablets, to my 03 leSabre each time I've changed the dexcool to refresh that sealing material which plugs cracks that _might_ occur. I do the the same for my 98 leSabre.

    If you didn't put a couple of tablets back in you 99 when you changed the antifreeze every two years (I hope you've done that) you should add it now. Buy the packet from your local Buick dealer, take two of the tablets and crush them with a spoon, then add them directly to the warm radiator and take her out of a good run. I drove to Cincinnati one time I did it. I open my hot radiator when it's not over heated but I don't recommend that for others. Do not add the tables to the overflow reservoir; they go directly into the radiator so they can circulate through the motor before they settle out to the bottom.

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

  • exo425exo425 Posts: 15
    This is true, the 3.1 does lack a lot of midrange and upper range torque but it can spin the tires from a start. My friend has a Grand Prix with the 3.8 and i like it a lot better than my Regal's 3.1. Thats not saying i dislike the 3.1 engine, it has been reliable and i am closing in on 200K miles. As for gasket leaks, I have heard a lot about it but i haven't seen it yet. I have heard the older engines didn't have this problem until the mid 90s. Apparently, the Dex-cool wasn't designed to run up to 100K miles as advertised.
  • mwdreammwdream Posts: 91
    I have a regal GS. I average 21 mpg. I don't always run 93 octane. When it is colder out I'll run 89. Usually 91 is fine. I don't get on the gas too much.

    Go Regal LS, if you don't need supercharger. Reliability has been pretty good. I've owned for 5 years now.
  • mwdreammwdream Posts: 91
    Did you notice a strange smell outside of the car, from possibly the coolant burning off ???

    Has anybody noticed this?
  • jipsterjipster Louisville, KentuckyPosts: 5,443
    I've never noticed the smell of coolant in the 2 years I've owned my Regal.

    A recent two hour interstate trip yielded no signs of coolant leakage.
  • maijoshmaijosh Posts: 2
    I have a weird noise coming from the front end of my car also, it's not a rattle noise, it sounds like a the fan belt is worn, but it's not. I've taken the car to 3 auto shops but no one can tell me what the noise is. I was told to change the belt to a gator back belt; I got new belt but not the gator back belt. I was told to change the water pump, I changed that, I was to it was the pulley, I changed that, I was told to flush the engine and add heavy oil, I did that, I have spent about $650.00 and still can't get rid of that annoying noise. Someone, Please help me...: confuse:
  • ejm0808ejm0808 Posts: 1
    Thanks for that tip on the sealant tablets. I had asked Buick in Detroit about that, and they said, yes , a good idea to add them since they were part of the recall. I have had no problems with my 00 Regal, and will change fluid now at 75,000 mi.
  • jay100jay100 Posts: 3
    I just bought a 95 Buick Regal with the 3.8L non-turbocharged engine. I've looked and looked and can't find the PCV valve. Auto Zone looked it up on their 'puter and gave me a verbal description - it plugs into the intake manifold somewhere on the top passenger (serpentine belt) side of the engine. Still can't find it. Does anyone know where I can find a FREE repair manual with drawing showing me exactly where it is online? Can someone give me a better verbal description? Do I have to take something apart to get at it?
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America I70 & I75 Posts: 21,507
    Look for a little circular tube coming up from the intake manifold with a cap on it. It probably doesn't have electrical wires to it in that year model. I believe you push down and rotate the cap like a childproof medicine bottle cap.

    If I come across a picture I'll post it. It's at the end of the motor with the belt. It's on the back corner of the tubes that carry the air through the intake.

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

  • tsu670tsu670 Posts: 293
    Please view message# 1289. Has step-by-step instructions for a '99. Hopefully your '95 isn't much different.
  • jay100jay100 Posts: 3
    Thanks & kudos to imidazol97 & tsu670. With yor help I found and replaced it. FYI - I had suspected it might be hiding in the little black tube and had even jiggled its cap a little to see if it would come off but was too chicken to try twisting hard without knowing it was the right thing.

    Some notes on the procedure:

    1. On my engine the cap dosen't have to be depressed to turn it counterclockwise about 1/8 turn and pull it off. There is, however, a spring inside, apparently holding the PCV valve down in its socket, that pushes up on the cap. So when the cap is replaced it has to be pushed down to comress the spring while turning clockwise.

    2. The black cap has, in the tiniest of raised letters that anyone will probably find obscured in dust & oil & are therefore useless, "PCV" in two places on its top. It does not have a presure sensor or wiring harness on it as mentioned in message #1289 for a '99 engine (mine's a '95)>

    3. I think message #1289 mentioned an O-ring on "said part" (the PCV valve). Ther is also a larger orange O-ring on the bottom of the cap not mentioned and the spring. I found both very loose so be careful... they may fall off.

    4. From top to bottom the assembly includes: black cap, large orange O-ring, spring, PCV valve with small O-ring on it.

    5. I had to use needle nosed pliers to get ahold of the top of the ole PCV Valve. Fingers are just too fat to get at it. The PCV valve with small O-ring has to be pushed with not too much force to get it to seat in its socket at the bottom of the black tube the cap sits on top of.

    5. At 175000 miles, the old PCV valve was in excellent condition and didn't need replacing - but I did anyway. Maybe the guy I bought the car from had it replaced sometime. Like tsu670, I did laugh a little but cursed some too. Tsu670 is right - the beer on the deck helped soothe the pain. I paid $2.99 for it at Auto Zone.
  • maijoshmaijosh Posts: 2
    I have the same problem with my 2000 Regal LS, I am still looking for answers
  • jay100jay100 Posts: 3
    Anybody know where I can find a free repair manual online?
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