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2002 Buick Rendezvous Class Action?



  • My 02 had the same problem with the ABS and traction control. It is a pretty easy fix. Order new wiring harness plugs for the wheel sensors. Once I replaced them, no problems. The connector goes bad for some reason.
  • We had to have our manifold gaskets replaced this year as well - cost a bit more than your repair bill. Now, my Traction light is coming on and activating. A/C went earlier in the summer. If we forget to turn off the radio before turning off the car, the radio becomes locked and Security flashes! Has there been a Class Action? Some other postings indicate there was one. We are the original owners and have less than 50K miles on it.
  • I didn't know about this forum. However, yesterday's experience at a GM dealer shop and a phone call today made me search for any information regarding this rendezvous. I bought this truch in 2005 with 46,000 miles on it. I drive is very sparingly, and today it has only 87,000 miles on it. I have not had much problems with it apart from fixing bearings. On Saturday, as l was driving on the freeway, the temp gage just did an Usain Bolt on me to the red and back to zero and again to red, and the coolant overheating alarm started wailing followed by a
    "a change oil" signal yet the oil was just changed about 2 months ago. The truck lost power till it couldnt even go 30 mph. I decided to turn round, and drove slowly back to my apartment. Yesterday morning, l became the first customer at the shop begging for some answers since they are the ones who chnaged the oil. The jury verdic was that "your cylinder head gasket has blown out, and it will cost you $1,900 plus tax to fix it" What? l screamed! How can that happen? I added! Well, thats what it is, added a voice on the other side. I told the guy that please send me the courtesy vehicle to pick me up so that l may come and pick up the truck for keeping while pondering how l will raise the $2000 plus for this repair. I picked up the truck, and its safely in purgatory in our apartment parking lot, courtesy of Metropolitan apartments. Then came a Tuesday phone call! The dealer shop informed me that GM wants to participate in repairing my truck if l agree to pay $500 deductable. Who can refuse such a lucrative offer? I answered yes, and l will take the truck back next week! This phone call sent my head spinning! Really? GM is paying for my repair? The quest for learning more about this offer overshadowed the original excitement. As an engineer, l decided to discover more, and here l am! It seems as if people are having more problems with this truck than l originally thought! God save me because l don't have enough money to even trade it in for something! The other problem l have noticed is wailing of the front passenger door window when being wheeled up and down. And, l will tell the shop! As for now, l leave my truck to God to take care of it since am screwed in this much as long as l still own this truck!
  • spike99spike99 Posts: 239
    edited October 2011
    Hi there...

    Sorry to read about the problems with your 2005 RDV. You are correct, unexpected technical problems (especially high priced repair problems) are a pain. A huge "pain". And, multiple repairs from "weak design" area is a pain as well.

    For my wife's 2003 "1st generation" FWD RDV, I've endured the following repairs:
    - Replaced both front wheel bearings.
    - Replaced both rear wheel bearings.
    - Repalced both front brake rotors (several times).
    - Replaced front suspension bushings.
    If wondering, the suspesnion (bearings / bushings / brake rotors) on the RDV vehicle are the size of many compact cars. Way "too weak" for a heavy vehicle. Thus, these items wear out faster then expected.
    - Refused to replace the AC rad (that has leaky seals). Thus, NO working AC in our RDV. Compressor seal, compressor pump and AC clutch have always been a weak design in GM vehicle brands. Expecially in their mid size cars and mini-SUV product lines.
    - Its ignition key is now starting to stick. re: Must turn the key really hard - like a pin in the steering column is jamming its rotation. This is a known weakness witht he RDV design as well.

    For future repairs on my wife's 2003 RDV, I expect its intake gasket to go. When it does, we'll be trading it in. Will probably buy an Kia Rondo or perhaps an X-Trail. If wondering, we've put enough "repairs do to lower grade engineering design" fixes on our 2003 RDV. Time to try a non-GM product next time around...

    Long mumblings short... I feel for you. My 2003 RDV has high repair costs as well....

  • gmcustsvcgmcustsvc Posts: 4,252
    I am glad to hear that you are working with the dealer towards resolution. Please feel free to keep us posted on your progress and contact us if you have any questions in the meantime. Thank you.

    Tricia, GM Customer Service.
  • How did you get GM to cover that? I bought mine in Sept 09 with 60,000 miles on it. A few months later I had to get a new transmission and transfer case. Then the alternator went. Then new tie rods. My heated seats & my heat needed to be fixed. My ABS light randomly turned off and on. Last month all of the wires under the dash caught "melted together" and its not driveable. Its over 3 grand to fix and thats less than what I owe on the car! I've had nothing but problems with it and insurance doesn't cover this last "fire" because there were no actual flames! It's been headache after headache and it's not because I don't take care of my car!
  • Wow - I am so glad I found this forum.....

    Where to begin....shortly after buying my rendezvous in 2006, my plugs for the phone charger went....then the heat and air con would only work when turned to 3 (no other settings). I was advised that I should change the fuses?????
    The coil springs went.....and, just a month ago it was back in the shop only to find out it now needs a $2000.00 head gasket.
    For the past two days, my ABS, TC lights are glowing all over my dash and when I apply pressure to the breaks the ABS kicks seatbelt sign glows ALL THE TIME......

    What do I do.....who do I contact........I am so frustrated.
  • buddo9buddo9 Posts: 18
    This is all getting to be pretty bad when no one listens!?
    All Buick Rendezvous overheat! It’s a badly designed system with no upper engine compartment ventilation! It’s one thing to save on mileage with a hot engine but another when it’s so hot it burns out all gaskets and seals everywhere! Counter productive to say to least! People are spending tons of money on repairs that are not necessary!
    I bought a 2002 Rendezvous knowing full well that I could fix the overheating problem! I got a good deal on the SUV and bought it knowing it was an easy repair! The previous owner spent a bundle on new head-gaskets and still the overheating problem did not leave! I purchased it knowing full well what the problem "was" !
    I did an inspection on the (engine compartment) The engine sits quite high in there and the heat of the engine has no escape from the compartment. It’s closed off and the engine sits in it’s own heat getting hotter and hotter destroying gaskets and all other heat related injuries ! The cooling fans direct the incoming air to the bottom and out below the problem!
    My inspection shows trails where the heat did escape around the upper rubber seal at two ends over the engine compartment.. Those very small openings were the only means of heat escape, but not nearly enough! The heat there was so intense it started bubbling and blistering the paint on the hood! That was all the information I needed to be confident in the purchase of this 2002 Buick Rendezvous!
    After the purchase I cut the rubber seal down away from the hood at least one inch by two feet from center…I was also careful not to remove the guard area for rain water. The lower section of the rubber guard takes care of that. For a test to be sure I sprayed water over the windshield and not a drop spilled onto the engine…..
    Well it’s been two years and not one over-heating problem since…… I have photos on the work done if you like……
  • spike99spike99 Posts: 239
    edited January 2012
    PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE stop telling people to remove or modify the factory "rubber" from their RDV's engine compartment. Rubbers are there to keep water out. Just like rubbers are installed around doors and rear hatches to keep water out as well. Rubbers are needed to stop the rain / snow and ice sliding down the front wind sheild and landing on top of the engine. If you want people to allow more air-flow cooling, it would me much wise to recommend the person install a hood vent. Have its opening facing the rear (windshield area) and it has a small screen. While driving down the road, air flows into the front RAD opening and out the top of the hood's optional hood scoop - NOT within the clearance gap where a factory rubber was installed.

    If you feel a a rubber should be removed or its size modified, suggest contacting GM and asking them to perform lab tests on all 2002 to 2005 RVDs. If you are NOT an auto certified GM tech, please STOP telling people to remove the factory rubber (from their hood area). The rubber is there for a reason.

    If wondering... 3.4L engines blow their intake gasket because of the design of the engine's intake and the early gaskets used in these engine were of weaker material. Weak material and Dexcool exposure too long and their gaskets "can" blow. Especially repair risk increase when vehicle was "over stressed" - like towing or driving aggresively. If wondering, my 2003 FWD RDV has its original intake gasket (and factory hood rubber) and it works great. All because its the ligher weight FWD model (compared to the heavier weight AWD vehicle), we drive it like a baby (with NO towing) and we change its dexcool formula every 3 years.

    BTW... If you check repair stats of 3.4L engine intake repairs, you'll discover GM mini-vans (like the Venture and early Montana/Uplander vans), and other GM sedan models blow 3.4L intake gasket as well. It's a common problem with the early 3.4L engines. The problem is NOT isolated to the early RVD model vehicles. Please stop telling people to remove or modify factory "rubbers" from their hood / firewall area. Very, very bad idea. Especially for the folks in north ice/snow winter regions.

  • ray80ray80 Posts: 1,655
    I would agree, its much better to correct the real problem and not try some magic fix. On your 03' you may have the newer intake gasket as it became available sometime that year.

    The intake gaskets cause coolant loss and if not checked and corrected sooner or later they will overheat and blow head gaskets.
  • wgatiwgati Posts: 1
    I have a 2003 RDV and just found out I need a new front Differential. I think I can get away with a fluid flush...also I was wondering if GM covers the cost of this work in a class action suit?
  • ray80ray80 Posts: 1,655
  • Please send photos. We have already replaced the engine in our 2002 Vous and even the new engine gets warm fast. I have noticed some of the newer 05-06 Vous have additional vents on each side of the engine built into the fenders as do the Enclave's. It's too bad they don't have them on my 02. You can send the photo's to [email protected]

    Thank you!
  • spike99spike99 Posts: 239
    edited February 2012

    You still haven't explained why your 2002 runs hot but other 2003s (that use 3.4L engine - like my 2003 RDV) doesn't run hot. It's engine temp needle is steady - directly in vertical postion. Please explain why your 2002 with original factory intake gasket runs hot. And, when folks get their 2002 intake gaskets replaced, they 2002 3.4L engines NO longer run hot.

  • cj170cj170 Posts: 1
    Wow, it sounds like you are describing my car line by line! After so many overheating issues it will no longer hold anything in the radiator; yesterday I noticed a good amount of water coming from the bottom of the engine while it was running, water pump change? Needless to say, now its parked until I figure out what’s next.
  • Hi, I found this forum and thank god I did. I was going to dump a bunch of money into my 2002 buick rend to get things fixed on it and up to par, but it sounds like that would be a very dumb idea.
    Feedback please.
    I have a 2002. It has 140k on it.
    I bought this car 2 years ago, almost 3 for $5,000. I thought that buicks ran forever, good engines, should be a good car…. Really wrong about that clearly. The AC went first, then the Bank One Sensor/check engine light came in about a month in. This is after the dealership I bought it from sold it to me without a spare tire, (VERY IRRESPONSIBLE DEALERSHIP PRACTICES) The car makes all kind of thumps and bumps in the suspension even after I had rear shocks done. The Anti lock light is on, stays on at all times, the braking system comes on at odd times, if the light does ever go off, it comes on immediately when I back up. The engine is eating oil, I have to top it off every few weeks, the heat comes and goes based on coolant levels, (excellent problem to have in February in Michigan) the rear defrost doesn’t work at all- Not a fuse either. The interior lights are dying at a rate of one every 6 weeks….
    This car sucks…
    This car was supposed to last me for 4 years, that was my financial plan. It isn’t even going to make it to 3, I suspect I am going to have a very large repair any day now and I am trying to unload it ASAP.
    Everything I have read is telling me that I am doing the right thing getting rid of this car as fast as humanely possible. I have to pay $3500 to get rid of the loan on it and then I have to find something else and for only $5-7,000 as that is all I can afford for a car loan.
    So a few questions: is there any hope for fixing this car or just unload it?
    Also, what is everyone buying after they get rid of their rendezvous. I need a small SUV, something without these kind of problems and will have relatively low problems in the high miles years.
    Third question: what are dealerships paying out on trade in on these buick P.O.S…..Can I get $2,000 on it? I see some dealerships are still selling these lemons for $5, $6,000 when I search for another car!!!! Are you kidding me!!!!
  • hosflyhosfly Posts: 1
    I had an overheating issue a couple months ago with my 02 rendezvous and was informed to change out the Dexcool with regular antifreeze after a flush. I had that done and it hasn't over heated in a while. I noticed that you said your rendezvous temp indicator stays at the half way point and doesn't move. Mine will stay at the 10 o'clock position while heading down the road. When I stop it will go up to about the two o'clock position until the fans kick on the take it back to the 12o'clock position. If not moving it will float between 12 and 2, do you know how to stop that?

    Also and much more importantly, the other day my fiance' was driving home and the temp climbed high enough to set off the alarms, so she let it cool on the side of the road and drove the rest of the way, twice as far as she made it before, with no problem at all. Now I'm noticing that the coolant is draining somewhere and I think that it's going into the oil. Do you have any input as to what I can do to make it stop draining the coolant into the oil? Or possibly how to test to see what is going on. I hear that it can either be the intake or the head gaskets. The dealership wants $80 to test it and the gasket kit is around $75. I'm thinking about just putting in new gaskets and seeing what happens but that will probably take me all day to accomplish.
    thanks in advance
  • torr2334torr2334 Posts: 1
    I have the same issue please send me the pics [email protected] thanks
  • silverfishsilverfish Posts: 2
    Problem with water temp gauge reading half way on 2002 rendezvous: 1. Dealer in L.V. changed radiator about a year ago claiming the radiator was not cooling the fluid. Drove off the lot and problem was still there and called dealer on the way back home to L.A.. Dealer said it must be air in the system and everything checked normal at the dealership. 2. Next day went to local dealer and was informed the problem is intake gaskets and had this replaced. Temp still read half and now will go past half to 3/4 before cooling back down to half or little below half. Now the A/C does not blow cold air. Seems like this is a common problem with rendezvous and no clean cut repair procedure. This is us spending money for dealers to learn how to fix common problems with no clear final satisfatory outcome. Anyone have a solution to water temp running higher than normal and A/C all of sudden not blowing cold air?
  • juliaomjuliaom Posts: 29
    Drive it into the closest RIVER and save your self four years of heartache, panic, frustration, and an empty bank account.
    I love my new Murano!!!!!!!!!!! :mad:
  • juliaomjuliaom Posts: 29
    Dump it, you will be money ahead. Four years and $11,000 later I am still paying my credit card bill of $3100 for the blown head gaskets from the dealer. Not to mention all the other repairs.
    I to thought Buick, being an AMERICAN car was Patriotic to buy, however, after purchase the RDV paperwork stated this car was made in MEXICO.
    I sure could have used some of thier Marguarita's but this time.
    I LOVE MY 2007 MURANO, white, four door, beige leather seats, new 18 inch tires, drives like a dream, 58,734 miles now.
    Never again will I buy and American car, even as a Patriot.
  • My grandmother bought her 2002 Buick Rendezvous CXL brand new in 2002. Almost immediately, she experienced problems with this vehicle. The electrical system went out completely. She was actually locked in the vehicle. Computer was replaced. Next was the air conditioning compressor. Replaced. Then, overheating. Head gaskets replaced. Heater won't blow out hot air. Fixed. More electrical problems, to the tune of $3000.00. My grandmother passed away in 2010. She very lovingly willed this car to me. Immediate problems. Overheating, again. Leaking water, antifreeze AND oil. And the air conditioning compressor went out, again. The fans stopped working. The car overheated yesterday, took it back to yet another shop. Cracked head gaskets. $3300.00 to fix. OR $4100.00 for a new engine. Did I mention this car has 71,000 miles on it? What a NIGHTMARE. Why hasn't there been more recalls on this vehicle!!!!! The mechanic told me today this vehicle is known for the head gasket issues. Not happy AT ALL. GM needs to stand behind these cars.
  • billohbilloh Posts: 5
    I'm also a rendezvous owner. Also same problems and repairs. Also was a ford minivan owner with similar problems. Never again American cars. Very sad.
  • I've had the same problem, been left stranded 7 times. also have a problem with the dash lights flashing on & off when I cut the car off. Gotten a new key, had the electrical to the ignition replaced, & the body control module replaced. Still not fixed. If you find a solution please let me know.
  • Sorry, I can't help you only to say that I went ahead and dumped mine shortly after that post. I really lucked out and got like $3k trade in on it at a B lot, this guy sells rendezvous for a buttload of money in Mexico I guess and had a Texas connection to get them across. I ended up with a Ford Escape a couple years newer than the buick. It was a good choice. Love the escape, minus the fact that this one has a bit of rust as it is a Canadian car... The only thing I miss on the Buick was the stadium seating in the back seat and it was slightly roomier, but otherwise, the transition to the Escapae was great. I paid off the lien, got the $3k trade in and financed a few k from the bank and it was still probably worth it to not have to dump major money into the buick.... good luck.
  • wjeterwjeter Posts: 1
    I am having major issues as well. I bought my Buick 2011 and every since I had this car there has been issues. I have replace the drums, the radiator sensor, my electrical wiring is acting up. The windows get stuck and sometimes do not want to come back up. Now I am having issues with my differential and transmission. I am still stuck in this loan and owe more than 3,600 dollars. I am so angry and frustrated with this. This needs to be looked into for a class action lawsuit or something. I should of read the complaints before I found myself purchasing one. This is crazy!!!!!!!
  • nmatamorosnmatamoros Posts: 2
    I am going through the same thing. I have a 2002 Buick Rendezvous CX, purchased in 2006. I have had one problem after another since I purchased it. For the last three years I have had to go without any air conditioning. We have replaced the condenser twice since it purchase. Most recently, I called the BUICK dealership to report my latest nightmare with the car. I was traveling on the freeway at 65 miles per hour when the lights in the instrument panel went off. Every light imaginable started going off. The needles on the odometer, gas gauge, and temperature malfunctioned. The horn then went off and the radio displayed the word LOCK on the front. My windows would not roll down, the radio shut off. My hazard lights would not work as they were already flashing from what I think was the alarm system going off. I had many people honking at me. I did not know what to do. I started losing power as if the system was shutting off on me. Mind you, everyone is traveling 65 mph or higher. If it were not for some of my window already being down due to no air conditioning. I would have been killed. I placed my arm and hand out the window motioning for people to let me get into their lanes so I could pull over. This took almost four minutes. The worst four minutes of my life. I thought it was all over for me. BUICK said they have no RECALLS out and that my Warranty is expired. This does not seem right. It is a SAFETY issue as far as I am concerned. Any help please. I have been told it is a Body Control Module. Please advise. Do I call BBB?
  • Thank goodness you weren't in an accident! I just went on a 700+Mile RT and about 100 miles into it all of my gauges and needles were going haywire just as you have described. All the dash lights blinking on and off, needles moving right to left. I drove a couple of times briefly at night and when this happened the headlights would also blink on and off. When I parked and locked the car a few minutes after the alarm system would go off. I have it in at the shop right now and they suspect a loose ignition switch and are replacing it for $275. After reading these posts I am afraid that is not the problem and I will have to pay that regardless. Last year I had the over heating problem. Cost over $3000 to repair. It was a cracked head. I bought my rendezvous brand new in 2002 and have been very happy with it otherwise.
  • Update on my 2002 Rendezvous electrical problem...after reading the post #284 by nmatamoros I called the service department and told them to check the Body Control Module and not to replace the Ignition Switch. Turns out it WAS the Body Control Module! It will cost nearly $600 to replace but thank goodness I read this post or I would have had to also pay $275 for the ignition switch which I did not need. Why don't the mechanics read this forum? All I did was google my issue and landed here. I really know nothing about cars!
  • I had my body control module fixed and I am still having the same problems. If you read posts here you will see lots of people have replaced the body control module and it doesn't fix the problem.
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