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Buick Century Maintenance and Repair



  • Junkyard motor? At about 210,000 miles, my '98 had already had intake and head gaskets (heads resurfaced) redone. At about 230,000 miles the camshaft broke. After finding a machine shop that does "line boring" and $1200 later, I found out that GM was so nice that they put hollow camshafts in all of their 3.1 and 3.4 litre motors. All six of the shops told me that the camshaft usually breaks at about 150,000 miles. Finding a "line boring" shop was the biggest chore. Not too many of them exist in NW Ohio. Did you or your friend talk to any machine shops? It's alot easier to change the cam and lifters before it breaks. Knowing what I do about these silly cars, I'll recommend you first, research what I've said and second, take another couple of weekends, pull the motor and replace the camshaft before it breaks. If not, you'll probably find out that the car will just shut off for no appearant reason and not restart. Mine happened on the interstate on my way to work. I'll, also, recommend that you replace the shift solonoids in the transmission at the same. At the GM dealer, I bought all four for mine for under a hundred dollars. It takes longer to remove the side case than it does to change all four solonoids. You'll change the fluid, seven quarts, and filter about forty bucks for the whole deal. Then you can have all of the major Century issues out of the way. I'm at about 350,000 miles now. Hope you find this useful. I wish I Knew some of this stuff before finding out the hard way.
  • I've had this similar prob with Olds, and Buick's inparticular.......depending on the engine, and how many you have, it's been the coil, or coil pack, that was the culprit
  • I broke the entrance key for my 1999 Buick Century Classic. Fortunately, or perhaps unfortunately, the fragment went flying into the snow rather than jamming in the trunk. I broke into my car and can drive it with the ignition, but obviously I can't drive around much longer without being able to lock it. Was curious if you guys have ever removed a trunk lock cylinder? I do not wan't to damage the electronic release or strip it. I also don't want to pay a mechanic to do this if it is a practical task to do myself. Thank You!!
  • i have a 2002 buick century and it has been acting up by surging from a dead stop and i have shifting problems. its almost as if the motor has no power. it doesnt want to accelerate and takes forever to get up to speed. but it didnt thro any codes. it did throw a high voltage code but i was thinking wouldnt it trip the check engine light? also i was told there is two shift solenoids in the trans a 1-2 and a 2-3 but i cant find the 1-2 solenoid anywhere. does any1 have any idea what this would be a solenoid or the tps (throtle position sensor)?
  • sorry new to this site didnt know where to actually ask these questions

    1. i have a 94 century and am looking into new tires. the current ones came off my old non running 95 century size is 185/75/14. i was told they dont make my tire anymore from several tire places. what would be the size i would need then?

    2. i have a two part question here, my car is hardly ever in the shop it is always fixed by my dad. my anti lock brake light is on. hes checked the rear wheels for locking up. hes checked the brake lines and front roaters for rubbing ( dont know what that actually means) hes checked to see if the fuse is bad incase it was a false/positive in the dash lights. the car stops fine and the brakes never lock up. what else should he check to make this light go off? and will the part that needs fixing interchange from the non running 95 century?
  • rjt427rjt427 Posts: 26
    I have a 1991 century with 33,000 miles on it. If the car sits all night in the morning its hard to start,it takes 15, to 20 seconds to start, after it starts its fine for the rest of the day. Only after a long time sitting is it hard to start.This problem just started , I have replaced the fuel pump,and fuel filter. Can someone help me with this problem ? Thanks
  • In July 2011 I inherited a 1997 Buick Century Custom complete with Dynaride and Concert sound... and the car rides smoother and bumps harder than any other car i have ever had. My mom had been storing the car for me to come and retrieve since my grandmother had her license revoked so in order to make sure everything was working well she took it to the Top Gun or Top Flight service center in Orange County, CA. It passed with flying colors something like a 72 point inspection that cost almost 300 bucks. 3 days later my daughter and i began the 7 hour drive home to Santa Rosa By the time we reached the Los Angeles County line the right blinker had gone out, and the indicator in the interior was rapidly blinking. and yet still we continued on our way... We stopped to fill up in Castaic, near the "grapevine" and then again in San Jose when i picked up a buddy of mine to help me drive the rest of the way. About a block away from his house my fuel gauge said i had a quarter tank of gas left. when he got into the drivers seat to begin driving the gas light came on and dinged at me... we flipped a u turn and headed for the nearest gas station, where upon arrival prior to buying any gas the needle of the gas gauge was now reading pas the full mark. AND THIS WAS JUST THE START!!!

    I have run out of gas at least 5 or 6 times and i know this is bad for the car but its almost impossible for me to calculate the gas mileage im gonna be getting with this car, and it gives no warning im lucky if i can even get it to the side of the road. I have even started having anxiety attacks at red lights. Ive also noticed that sometimes in the morning my interior dash lights will "appear" to be on only a block later ill hear a pop sound and then they come on all the way. RIght now my ABS and Emergency Brake lights in the dash are on and they have stayed on even though i never use the ebrake because it hurts my back. A month after i got the car my front right blinker and daylamp mysteriously fixed themselves on their own accord,,, no new bulbs fuses or anything, however as of today they are out again and this time ive tried new bulbs and fuses. And STILL THERES MORE

    twice since i have had the car it has refused to first i thought it was the starter but i wasnt too worried since it had only happened twice.. My dad is an amazing mechanic, specializing in custom fabrication and repair, so i stopped at his house about a month ago because it was having a hard time starting, he again checked all my fluids, and fuses. The battery was really low, and didnt seem to hold a charge according to the voltage reader so he put it on a charger and we let it fully charge before we left, He took out the glove box and hood lamp bulbs to conserve energy and suggested i buy a new battery as soon as possible. 2 weeks ago i went to pick my daughter up from her grandmas house, car started just fine in my driveway but when i tried to start it at their house all it did was click. Thinking it was the battery this time i had my sister in law attempt to jump start my car with hers. And still all we got was a click click click. we disconnected the jumper cables and pushed my car back in the driveway all of 3 feet and the darn thing started right up. My clock had reset itself but my radio stations were still programmed. For the last three days i have had to jump start my car id say like 75 percent of the time in order for it to start, my cables are clean and are not corroded. None of my fuses or bulbs are blown. I make sure everything in the car is off so as not to drain the battery. my dad said he thinks that if its not the battery that its probably the starter not getting enough juice from the battery because all of the lights, radio, door locks, interior dash lights, power windows seats and doors work...

    Anyone got any ideas.. seriously any ideas on what we should try to fix this problem, other than a new battery cause right now im getting ready to walk to my house cause guess what my car wont start!!
  • i have the same issue but the cause of this issue is the overdrive celonoid which is 30 bucks at oreilly auto parts, the catch is you have take apart the transmission to get to this celonoid so it will end up costing you tons of money. heres a tip if you dont like the jerk when it starts from a stop shift it into 1,2, or 3rd then when you get rolling shift it back into overdrive
  • STOP....TAKE A DEEP.. BREATH,,,,,,,lol YOUR STARTER HAS A FLAT SPOT...on the can get away with this issue for a period of time b4 you have to replace.. the starter, by a few tips ,,,, first of all I assume your a manual trans...? rolling the vehical almost wrks everytime... ,as well as turning key ,back and forth prior to starting your vehical , if auto trans...key on shift lever up and down

    good luck
  • did you ever find out what the problem was? I have a similar problem with my 95 buick century.
  • did you ever find out what the problem is? I'm having very similar problems with my 95.
  • Did you ever find out what the problem was? I'm having the almost exact same problem with my 95 Century. please let me know asap thanks.
  • When going from Park/Neutral to Reverse there's a loud 'clunk' and it jerks into gear. Does the same 'jerk' going into Drive but doesn't 'clunk'. All shifting in Drive is very smooth. This is my second transmission (professionally installed about 100,000 miles ago). Is the tranny going out or could it be something else (like the torqure converter.....etc)?
  • Not yet....I am going to take it in to either a transmission shop or repair shop (owned by a guy who worked as the head mechanic for our local Chevy dealership) sometime in the next 2 weeks. I'll post the findings.
  • sounds like its loseing presser mybe the presser reg u should check it ....or hook up a fuel presser gag and check the psi and let it sit and see if it losses
    presser right off hand could be a few things as well
  • We have the same issue with our Buick same as yours and a 98. We still have the problem and have tried both keys that came with the car. Even our mechanic friend is perplexed. Any other thoughts on what could be the issue? We got it turning over but it won't fire. We changed the ignition switch and the starter even added a push button switch in it and still won't fire. Any one have any suggestions?

  • All that is needed to replace the torque strut is to remove the bolt going through the hole in each end, then lift it out. To replace it, put the new part where the old one was and put the bolts back through the holes, then put on the nuts and tighten them. If memory serves, you will need a 13mm and a 15mm wrench to loosen and tighten the bolts and nuts.
  • I have a 2002 century. Last year I blew a head gasket, and replaced them as well as the LIM and UIM gaskets, and while i was there, i replaced the thermostat. Then this year, the car started over heating so I replaced the radiator and cap cause it was full of rust, as well as the water pump. Next day, I blew the LIM gasket. So I ripped it all apart again and replaced the gaskets again, including the heads again since i was right there. Now it's all back together, and i'm still over heating, and i have no heat out of the vents. If i step on the gas and get the rpms up, the heater kicks in and the car cools back down, as soon as i let off, it starts overheating again and i lose heat in the cabin again. I'm left with just a couple possiblilities i can think of, before i rip things apart again. Is it possible that the belt if too loose, because when i rev the engine, everything kicks in and works properly, or is it also possible that the thermostat is clogged or bad because of the rust that was in the radiator and flowing thru the system for the last year now, and one more thing, once the car comes up to temp, i open the bleeder valve on the thermostat housing and mostly only get air and steam out of it, if i rev the engine, i get coolant eventually come out. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated and sorry for the long winded explanation.
  • I also have a 2002 Century that was bought new in 2002. It sounds like you still have air trapped in the cooling system. Also you must still have rust and maybe even some motor oil in your cooling system. even a small amount of air in these Buicks will cause cooling problems and the heater to not work right. I hope you did not use cheap discount store gaskets to do your repair. Fel-Pro are some of the best and are recommended by many expert mechanics. You can use liquid Cascade automatic dishwasher soap to clean your cooling system before putting new fresh green anti-freeze back in the system. I do not recommend the Dexcool stuff that came in it. There were problems with it that were causing gasket problems. The green stuff works just fine and is cheaper. After you put the dish washing soap in your radiator drive it for a few days if it is not freezing where you live yet. after a few days drain it out then refill with plane water and drive a few more days to wash the soap out. Then fill with green anti-freeze and burp and bleed all the air out of the system with the 2 bleed screws. It is best to have the back wheels lower than the engine to get all the air out. This will cause the air to travel to the front of the engine where the bleeders are located. You may have to try several times to get all the air out , but it works this way. I wish you luck with your Buick.
  • No, I definitely used FelPro gaskets. And I need to replace one of the bleeder screws, the one on top of the water pump, I broke the head tightening it back down. And I will try the cascade thing to clean it out. Thanks for the info
  • charles_tcharles_t 512 shadow lane rdPosts: 2
    edited June 2016

    Where can I find 3 more of these rims they will fit on my 94 Buick Century but I have to get a suspension upgrade for it to utilize the P225/75/R15 since it bangs the fender flares so instead I have to get lower profile tires or same perimeter of the stock tires P185/65/R14 but the front tires won't need to be as wide as the rear end because the front axle is a bit wider than the rear axle, which is weird because I believe the short wheelbase for the rear axle is what's causing the car not to handle well on dirt roads.
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