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Buick Park Avenue Electrical / Lighting Problems



  • ggeeooggeeoo Posts: 94
    Dear Sir:

    I have a 99 Park it had a 11 year birthday today. Two issues the back up lights
    are not working I have checked the fuse box under the glove compartment the fuse
    looks good replaced the back up light switch a the transmission wit a new one and
    replaced the bulbs still no good any ideas? 2 nd issue is the oil pressure read out
    I replaced the switch above the oil filter checked the connection but the read out
    is wacky rise and falls and rings the alarm. Any ideas?

    Art Levine
  • ggeeooggeeoo Posts: 94
    Ya know I love my PA too. Will Buick ever offer a seat as comfortable and a roomy
    as the PA ultra? I mention to a Buick GM that bench seats in the front are great
    for big guys. He said the bench seat went out with the 8 track. If they do not build
    a model like my 99 park I will drive it forever until the wheels fall off. I bought mine
    new 40 K pearl diamond white it still runs great with some minor electrical issues.
    I just press that window with my thumb when it goes dim with the temp.
  • ggeeooggeeoo Posts: 94
    This is a ongoing thread I am trying to unravel.

    1999 Buick Park Ultra Back up lights failed both of them. Check the fuse replaced it even though it looked ok. Replaced the bulbs even though they looked ok. Noticed
    a broken Green Wire in the bundle that goes up the trunk C HINGE . sPLICED AND REPAIRED still no lights I will report after inspect the entire harness to the lights.
    Any ideas?
  • ggeeooggeeoo Posts: 94
    My back up lights failed because of a green wire that goes up the trunk J hinge. I used
    Tap splicer so that it will not come apart again so easily. I replaced the fuse,backup
    switch and bulbs good that they are new but that was all unnecessary. So word to
    the wise find the fat green wire in the bundle that is the ground make sure yours is
    not cut or broke!
  • rickoricko Posts: 22
    Driver information center on 97 park avenue is not working, could this be a fuse issue or is it dead and need of replacing.
  • My 2000 Park Avenue is having what sounds like the same problem. It does not even turn over when turning the key. When it resets itself, it starts fine and will do so for days or weeks at a time. The machanic could not find a problem because it would not replicate the issue when at the shop. He thought it may be a nuetral switch in the tranny. Took it to the transmission shop where, of course, it would not fail. I am continuing to drive it until the failure is more consistant. Any ideas?
  • jchirdjchird Posts: 3
    Okay, here's what happened with my mother's 2000 Park Avenue. She was having problems with it intermittently "not starting". Her dealer could not fix it after several tries. After the dealer closed, another mechanic tried fixing it and failed, Then AAA towing recommended Al (at Al's Family Repair in Ocala Florida) took a stab at it. He first diagnosed a weak fuel pump. The fuel pump was replaced and it was okay for a week or so until it happened again. This time he came over to the house, BLESS HIS HEART, and diagnosed it while it was not starting...FINALLY. He "renewed the crank" sensor whatever that means and it has been starting for a couple of months without fail. I hope this helps your mechanic! Let me know!
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America I70 & I75 Posts: 21,602
    In jchird's case the car was cranking, but wouldn't fire.

    In sharmon708's case the car is NOT turning the motor over due to the security system protecting from nonauthorized keys.

    One question, was more than one key in the car near the steering column at the time it wouldn't start? I.E., one key in pocket or hand and the other in the ignition? I've experienced this with our Cobalt. Two key transponders reacting when the key is inserted confuses the computer.

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

  • No other transponder was in the car at the time. I assume you are talking about the keyless remote. The key itself does not have the security component built into the key as many other GM products do. My other car is a Buick Regal and it does have such a key. I do not carry the Regal key on my set. The mechanic was thinking that is was related to the security system and kept asking me if the security light was flashing at the time it would not start. The light comes on just as the other dash lights do but it not flashing. What else should I be considering if it is a security issue? How does it get reset?
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America I70 & I75 Posts: 21,602
    >The key itself does not have the security component built into the key as many other GM products do.

    The key does not have the transponder in the head of the key. You're telling me then it has the black chip in the neck of the key that gets touched by two contacts at the entrance to the lock cylinder when the key is put in all the way. I was wrong in thinking it had the transponders...

    If it had the black chip with metal contacts on both sides that's the VATS system. The tiny wires in the steering column connect to the connector at the base of the steering column. Tilting the wheel breaks the tiny threads of wires in the wires and changes their resistance as more of the threads in each wire break. Also the contacts in the lock cylinder may be dirty or worn back and making bad or poor contact.

    When you turn the key ON the security light should come on for about 5 seconds as the theft deterrent module reads the resistance in the circuit to the key. If that resistance is right, the security light goes off. If not, it should start flashing and flash for three minutes as the injectors and starter are locked out.

    Then after 3 minutes the module is ready to read another key chip.

    There are other problems some people have had with various parts of the car security such as trunk lock sensors on H-bodies.

    If your problem is VATS, the easiest fix is to find the two tiny wires at the bottom of the steering column (they're usually inside a larger plastic housing that looks like a single wire itself) and jump them with a resistor pack the same resistance as the key chip (within 10%). Theft alarm installers have resistors that they get already made to the 15 resistances used by GM. They might be an easy way to have the resistor jumper installed for a moderate price even ifyou don't buy an alarm system from them!!!

    Clean the key contacts with a pencil eraser. Use another key if it works better. Dip the key into alcohol and insert quickly into the lock cylinder to try to clean the contacts that rub the black chip.

    If it is the VATS system like on the leSabre and Bonnevilles, the module can fail in 4 ways. One is if it decides it's getting wrong readings for some reason and it goes into bypass mode where it just lets the car start every time. Mine on my 98 leSabre did that. Occasionally the security light would come on while driving and then go off. Occasionally the key chips didn't read right on the first turn of the key. But instead of locking out 3 minutes every time, it would read the key again on removal and reinsertion and usually start. Eventually the system quit turning on the security light or the bulb burned out. I don't know which. That's 2 years ago.

    Good luck.
    Search for VATS on google. (vehicle anti theft system)

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

  • bowfanbowfan Posts: 55
    Imidazol97, that's a very nice writeup on the VATS (I think it's also called the PassKey2 system). I had a friend with a '94 BPA that failed several times while the dealer mechanic just kept soldering up and repairing the wires. I'm sure a 2000 would have the PK3 system, which as you said has the transponder device in the rubber head of the key.

    Sharmon708, the key transponder is not the same as the keyless remote.

    Unfortunately I can't offer any real help to you. I had one car a long time ago, that if you drove it for a long drive would not turn the engine over until it had cooled down a while. I always guessed that the starter was getting too hot as I thought it was by the exhaust pipe, but I can't say with authority.

    I've not heard of a NSS failure on these cars, although I've seen it on Jeep Cherokees.

    *** If you suspect this is your problem, one way you could isolate it would be to wait until it fails again and then put the transmission in neutral and try to turn it over. They will start in either neutral or park, by design. On the Cherokee NSSwitches that I've seen, the copper contacts in the area of the 'park' selection would get dirty or gummed up while the neutral was usually still in good shape. You could test them by one of two methods, either attempting to start in neutral, or pulling the relay for the starter and jumper'ing it to bypass the NSS. I'd recommend a try in neutral to keep it simple.

    If your mechanic has looked at it, I would guess he has eliminated the simple stuff like loose battery cables.

    Hope you find it soon, and please write back if you do, so that others may benefit from your experience. :D
  • The key itself for the Park Avenue does not have any visible black chips built into the neck of the key, it is just a plain key. My 2001 Regal does have such a system but is currently having no issues. All of the talk of the security system has started me to try changing to the other spare key which has hardly been used. I was thinking that perhaps the key is getting somewhat worn and my be considered a invalid key. The original auto mechanic originally suspected a problem with the security system.

    When the problem occurs, the security light is not flashing. Messing with the shifter sometimes seems to reset the problem but it is inconsistant. Removing the key and re-inserting has sometimes corrected it also. The car has 84,000 miles on it and this is the most significant problem that I have had in the 60,000 plus miles that I have owned it. So far, the car has not had the problem in a week an a half.
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America I70 & I75 Posts: 21,602
    Your post is titled, "2000 Buick Regal NO START." ??? :confuse: :sick:

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

  • Hello everyone,
    Here is what happened i was sitting at a stop light and it just died.. So I put it in park and tried to start it but it won't even turn over. So i thought i lost battery connection but the head lights, horn, wipers, radio, and the power seats were still working . So I checked every fuse in the fuse box under the hood. All were ok. So i checked the one located under the back seat and checked most of them and they were good. I bought a used ECM but have not got it programmed yet. I talked to a guy at my work and he said to check to see if i even have power going to the fuse box that is under the hood. My car has a lot of miles which i put a bunch on it my self and have changed a lot of things but its a solid car so it worth it. motor,trany so far . the car its self has 270,000 miles. but i want to get to 300,000 :cry:
    Thanks for your time!!
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America I70 & I75 Posts: 21,602
    edited March 2010
    If the battery under the hood has multiple connectors on the red positive terminal, those can have corrosion between the connectors. Turn off the heater control with the key ON, then turn the key OFF and disconnect the negative and then the positives. Clean between them. Cut back the plastic covering if you need to.

    At that mileage I would guess crankshaft position sensor when it died, but when it wouldn't turn over, that indicates more. Because of the double positives, power may still go to part of the car and not others.

    However, because it died and then wouldn't even crank, that might point to the cables.

    You can test with a meter at the small terminal on the solenoid, while someone turns the key ON and CRANK to see if power is getting to the solenoid to active it and the starter.

    Be careful with live positive wires. But The real test would be to get under the car and use a jumper to see if the thing cranks when you apply power directly to the solenoid small terminal that the key actually applies power to if all the parts are working in between. Then if that doesn't work, apply power to the positive terminal on the solenoid, the big one, and expect a spark. If it cranks then, you know it's a connection or the solenoid.

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

  • bowfanbowfan Posts: 55
    Hi Jon,

    You could have all your accessories work, in spite of the starter not turning the motor over as it (starter) uses a much larger draw of amps. So if you have a loose connection at the battery, that could happen, or if the battery itself has gotten weak it could cause the stall and failure to restart. Alternator working properly?

    Did you try to test the battery strength or jump start? Wiggle the battery cables and make sure they were tight?

    Next would be testing the starter.

    If both battery and starter pass tests and cables were tight, maybe a fusible link, but I'd look at a failure of the intake plenum with subsequent dump of coolant into the engine which can cause it to not turn over. That has happened to my '98.

    But I'd check the simple things first.

    Hope you set a record for high miles! I'm around 280k now, mostly original and shooting for 300k as my next goal too..

    Please let us know how it goes. :)
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America I70 & I75 Posts: 21,602
    >! I'm around 280k now

    What have you had to do to your car for those miles?

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

  • bowfanbowfan Posts: 55
    driveline parts:
    2 intake plenums (also known as UIM / upper intake manifold , the 2nd was a redesigned unit with a metal ring around the EGR pipe water passages, and replaced the original EGR stovepipe with the included reduced diameter pipe)
    1 starter
    1 radiator
    1 oil pressure sensor ( +1 under warranty)
    1' length of plastic hard pipe which connects fuel pipe to fuel rail
    2 sets of Michelin X or X-Plus radials avg 100k miles each.

    the usual maint stuff:
    brake pads & rotors, rear bearings - hubs, valve cover gaskets, air & fuel filters, battery, shocks

    I say 'mostly orig' as A/C, engine, trans, are original (except the UIM). Keyfob & it's battery orig too.

    I try to swap oil & filter at 3 - 4000 miles
    flushed the trans fluid (but only twice... probably not as often as I should)

    I bought it in 2001 with 99988 miles. High mileage for a 3 year old car, but it had regular maint and a glove box full of receipts to prove it.

    misc repairs:
    resoldered resistors in climate control
    installed pin to stop fuel gauge from flipping needle over
    repaired connector to rear defroster
    removed stuck cassette tape from stereo causing it to display error
    took apart dash (huge job!) to replace turn-signal flasher, only to find it wasn't bad
    replaced 1 driver's window motor
    replaced 1 wiper motor

    Looks like a lot, but I don't think so for the age. IMO. ;)

    Sorry for the novel :)
  • Well i cleaned my connections today. And I confirmed that i do have power to the large positive wire going to the starter. So i took my test light and checked the fuses in the fuse box and determined that i dont have power going to several fuses. like SIR PCM IGN . And a few more . So I took loosed the fuse box and flipped it over and removed the plug on the bottle where it seemed that most of the fuses with out power were and the pins on that plug seemed Fine clean not burnt. So I think I'm going to find a used Fuse box. and might try to split my mine apart and see was going on in there .. Haven't a hard time finding a use fuse box . Anybody got one? Also I tried to find a FUSEABLE LINK on my car and no luck i figured it would be on the wire going to the fuse box but mine doesn't have on there. I'm i looking in the wrong Spot?
  • I jumped the starter and cranked over Perfect. I think the battery and starter are fine. I have done the plenum gaskets before. I had a Air leak and made the car run very Lean because the motor was not drawing the air though the intake.. Thanks Jon :sick:
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