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  1. #1 Introduction and a question. 
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    My name is Matthew. Obviously this is my first post but I come here to read a lot. I have a 2001 Grand Prix GT. I have a number of issues that I would like to discuss but have no idea where I should post them. I took my car to Firestone (I know) just to get their spring car care package. Was supposed to be a simple tire rotation and oil change. It ended up turning into a nightmare. They did an under the car inspection and came up issues that cost more than the car's worth. I know they like to pad stuff to make money, but there are some real issues. Only thing wrong with the transmission is the mount, so I know I don't really need to post there. I have scanned the paper work they gave me, plus I have a couple codes from AutoZone. Hopefully I can post all this in one thread.

    Thanks in advance. Off to bed after I pray another night that my car will make it another day.

    Matthew
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  2. #2 Re: Introduction and a question. 
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    Tell us your problems it probably is not as bad as they say
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  3. #3 Re: Introduction and a question. 
    I live here. ericspecullaas's Avatar
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    tranny mont change is easy get your 15mm out after you jack the car up and have the engine tranny combo supported then remove and replace. and welcome we will get you all sorted out with your problems!! she will be back up and running in no time flat
    im a cookie again yay me
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  4. #4 Re: Introduction and a question. 
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    I am hoping to do the stuff myself and/or have some people I know help me. I wouldn't say I'm a car guy mechanically. I have a 2001 Impala with the same engine in my driveway, only problem with it is the fuel intake manifold blew up. And when I say blew up, I mean blew up, it actually blew off the sight shield and the top part that's made of plastic (absurd) is in pieces. Not sure if it was high compression and maybe some coolant leak or what not, no one seems to have heard of such a thing. I was going to get my hands dirty with the Impala and see about getting as close to 3k for it. Anyway, this isn't really about the Impala, only reason I mentioned it is hopefully if it is worth it to take some of the parts out of it to use in the GP. OK, here is goes.

    The AutoZone codes are:

    P0463 or fuel sender, which I could see anyway
    P0440 EVAP or small leak, etc. I did have a loose cap and have recently bought a new one, but never reset the code.
    P0141 or the dreaded O2 sensor. I never tried any trouble shooting on this, could be anything.

    Now for the Firestone assessment. I scanned the list and should be in the attachments. If it didn't work, I will try to post them again.



    Last edited by CycoPuppet; 05-08-2013 at 04:59 AM. Reason: Tried to add photo
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  5. #5 Re: Introduction and a question. 
    GTX Level Member cerick08GP's Avatar
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    First of all, after reading their list I lol’d. Then I thought about it and lmfao.

    I give you my play by play for the list. But first so I don’t forget, you said you pick up a new gas cap. FWIW most non-OEM gas caps are crap. I hate stealerships but you need a factory gas cap IMO.

    Power steering – replace as much of the fluid as you can, and add in some power steering leak stop.

    Tranny mount = eric covered that

    Struts – if it rides OK and your not getting crazy tire wear, you can wait to replace.

    Muffler – its leaking a bit, big deal.

    Rear caliper slides – clean and lube? Wtf? I’d slap the mechanic. Total BS.
    When the rear brakes need replacing, then you lube the slide. Doing earlier it totally unnecessary.

    Valve cover gasket – try tightening the valve cover it first. Check all the bolts for tension, and tightening one flat at a time. Just don’t monkey it down you could make the leak worse.

    Radiator hoses – if they aren’t leaking your fine for now. Replace them yourself if you want, they are easily replaced.

    Oil leak – yup, 12 year old cars tend to leak a bit.

    Tire – well if you need them, they are a wear item no getting around it




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  6. #6 Re: Introduction and a question. 
    GXP Level Member coolone's Avatar
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    You didn't say how many miles on the car... But, If you are mechanically inclined and have a set of sockets, willing to scream and curse a bit, you can do all of this work. Price of maintenance will be high if it's not kept up regularly which seems to be the case with this car.

    As mentioned, some can wait if you need to build funds as they aren't totally critical.

    The oil leak is easy, use degreaser on engine and clean it where oil is. After it dries keep checking to see where leak is from. More likely then not is the valve cover gaskets which even though you have to take some things apart it's not hard to do.

    $1000 for replacing the struts with simple strut assembly's is total rip off! It's literally 5 bolts to take em off and then put them back on. Rockauto.com is your friend here... IIRC about $120 per strut, so half the price, but you get new strut, spring, boot, mounts, all in one. While struts are off and wheels out of way you can lube your guide pins and do the tranny and engine mounts...

    Exhaust is no big deal, get under there and take a look for yourself. There is a cheap putty kit to plug little holes, never used it myself, but it's there. Otherwise, cutting out or removing exhaust pieces isn't so tough. Just match up the new stuff, mark, cut, clamp and done! Search the net again, mufflers are cheaper than what they'll sell you and probably last longer.

    Cooling system as mentioned... Hoses are easy if needed. Drain system, replace hoses and go get coolant flushed out and replace the dexcrap... Done.

    Codes? Go to autozone or advance auto and let them tell you what codes are and use google!

    With the costs savings you could do even more... Change plugs and wires, oil, all filters, do a tranny pan drop and change filter and fluids and replace all your rotors and pads, probably have enough to do controls arms, sways and bushings all around too... Geeeee. I can't see how the hell they could justify $4000.00. Omg!

    I would've laughed in their face, but that's just me.

    Good luck!
    Overkill BBC Cam, YT 1.8 RR's, Rhodes Lifters, STGII Heads, GenV, Pacesetters, 3" Exh to Tips, TEP Trans. N*, ID 75# injectors/E85 coming soon
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  7. #7 Re: Introduction and a question. 
    Turbo is the way to go. BillBoost37's Avatar
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    Hi..I'm BillBoost.. you may see a few posts by me around here. Firestone is trying to rob, rape and maime you without any lube at all. That paper they gave you can be burned at will.

    Here's my take:
    You have a few leaks. To see/diagnose the proper part versus replacing every single part of the car, you need to clean things down. Pick up a couple cans of degreaser at the parts store and put the car on ramps or jackstands on the front. Climb under and spray the front/back and everything you can get to under there. Then from above hit the rest of the stuff. Follow the directions until things are pretty darn decent. Once it dries..you'll be able to start diagnosing properly.
    Use online discounts and or Rockauto etc to get the best overall deals on parts. Then follow the how to's.


    Power steering. Likely this is a hose or clamp. Check/refill it to the proper level and let's look for the leaks. Once the level is correct, start up the car and turn the wheels back and forth a few times. Turn it off and look for wetness by the pump or on a hose. Get us pictures if you are unsure where it's coming from and we'll help.

    Engine trans mount: Use online discounts and or Rockauto etc to get the best overall deals on parts. Then follow the how to's.
    http://www.grandprixforums.net/motor...ing-46266.html

    Shocks and struts: I would buy quickstruts (mount/spring/strut fully assembled) and bolt them in. I don't have a how to, but there's one here somewhere. Then you bring the car for an alignment.

    Exhaust: If you can't hear a loud noise.. it's them scamming you into an overpriced muffler. If it is leaking a bit.. maybe patch or toss a new muffler on. It's not tough.

    ABS - Likely a wheel bearing going bad. Possible autozone scan will tell you.

    Misc Brake service - Where's this firestone, I'm going to slap this guy myself. That's ridiculous.

    Valve cover gasket set: Piece of cake. We can walk you through this. Overall though it's about $20 in parts. Tightening never helps. The bolts have sleeves and likely the gaskets/grommets are shot.

    Cooling system: Buy two engine to radiator hoses. We can walk you through this as well. Along with the flush and refill.

    Oil Leak, this is covered in cleaning the engine. Once that is done..then we can see where it's coming from. Most likely it's the valve cover they outlined above.

    Tires: Likely their tires are junk. Shop around.

    I'm seeing this as a few parts, the struts being the most expensive part of it all. From there.. most of the work you could do in a day/weekend.
    I drink..so consider that when reading my posts.

    2010 Audi A6 Dual IC's
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  8. #8 Re: Introduction and a question. 
    Killa Bee Scottydoggs's Avatar
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    wow, thats some list. ive changed every last thing on that list, plus more, for less then 1/2 that bill, and that includes a used tranny installed.

    80 something bucks to read a cel light, come on....thats just to scan it, not even to fix whats wrong. the abs scan i could understand, not the cel scan

    theres a "how to" here for almost every last part that needs attention on your car. or you can be walked through it easy enough.

    granted, when i bought my car, i took it to a shop to get it up on a lift and inspected, i knew it needed at least 2500 is repairs, and thats the shop prices i was given. i used all them repairs to get my car for 1/2 what they wanted.

    98 Buick Regal GS, F body brakes, Caddy STS wheels, tinted tails L36 bottom end, lightly ported heads, 1.95 roller rockers, headers, gen 5 N* 3.0 pulley, FSIC, 42 lb injectors, a BrandonHall rebuilt trans, DHP tuned and AEM water/Meth injection https://goo.gl/gpV5kW
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  9. #9 Re: Introduction and a question. 
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    What they all said is its not that bad and its not and most of it you can do yourself as for the steering leak these cars had a recall for that see if it was done and yeah slap the mechanic total bs
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  10. #10 Re: Introduction and a question. 
    Killa Bee Scottydoggs's Avatar
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    the rack recall is only for cars built in 2 plants. you can call any GM dealer with your vin #, they will tell you if your car is one of the recalled cars.

    98 Buick Regal GS, F body brakes, Caddy STS wheels, tinted tails L36 bottom end, lightly ported heads, 1.95 roller rockers, headers, gen 5 N* 3.0 pulley, FSIC, 42 lb injectors, a BrandonHall rebuilt trans, DHP tuned and AEM water/Meth injection https://goo.gl/gpV5kW
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  11. #11 Re: Introduction and a question. 
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    Wow, I knew that they were padding it but the way you guys make it sound I could do this for less than a 1/4 of the cost. The list has my mileage at 67k, which is wrong, the guy didn't hear the 1 before it. So yeah, 167k miles.

    I also forgot to mention that I am getting little less than 15mpg city. The guy at AutoZone said something about the EVAP or O2 sensor issue will cause my car to go into "default mode" therefor using more fuel. I know that the GPGT gets 17mpg city, but is there a way to improve it?

    When putting new struts/mounts in, should I get new assemblies all around, or could I just replace the LF mount (making kinda grinding noise when I turn) and then do a total assembly replace on the rear wheels since supposedly the RF strut is fine? Either way, some struts need a replacing. I know he's a salesman, but the guy at Firestone said that they used to install economy brand struts and they fail fast, which is what was in my car, so he says. The struts in there now are actually aftermarket by the previous owner. I am looking at the RockAuto site and there's econo brands that catch my cheap eye, but are they ok to get? I'm not trying to race out my car, but I also don't want a bumpy ride. Coolone says possibly $120 per strut, but there's a bunch under that price that are not econo.

    The power steering was about empty when I got it looked at, since the day or so after I have filled it with fluid with stop leak in it already plus some stop leak itself. The steering feels really nice now, sometimes it feels a little resistant but not much at all. Could just be my driving or maybe the strut, I dunno.

    My exhaust is a little on the loud side, so I will be checking that out.

    About the degrease/cleaning, is there any areas on the engine that this stuff should not touch? Are hoses and such safe if in contact with it?

    To get pictures of the PSP and anywhere else, do I have to remove or lift anything? The PSP and reservoir are pain to get to just to fill it let alone take pictures. Not saying I won't, just wondering what's the best approach. Also, should I do the struts first before the PSP test?

    Is there an order I should follow when doing this. I know it was said above that this could take a day or weekend. Is that including the diagnostic part as well as repair?
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  12. #12 Re: Introduction and a question. 
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scottydoggs View Post
    the rack recall is only for cars built in 2 plants. you can call any GM dealer with your vin #, they will tell you if your car is one of the recalled cars.
    Is there a way to find that out online? I saw a sticker somewhere on my car, I think the driver side door, that said where it was made. If it is one of the recalled cars, does this mean I can get it fixed for nothing?

    EDIT: I read that it's this:
    Summary: Dorman is recalling 979 steering knuckles, dorman p/nos. 697-902 and 697-903, sold under dorman's "oe solutions<sup>tm</sup>" brand name, and napa p/nos. 7-8502 and 7-8503 which were sold for replacement use on the various vehicles listed above. A potential material or design defect could result in the steering knuckle breaking in the hub area.

    Consequence: A broken steering knuckle could result in loss of steering control and a possible crash without warning.

    Remedy: Dorman will notify owners and replace the defective steering knuckles free of charge and reimburse the repair facility or owner for labor. The recall began on february 23, 2009. Owners may contact dorman's toll-free hotline at 1-800-523-2492.

    Notes: This recall only pertains to aftermarket dorman steering knuckles and has no relation to any original equipment installed on vehicles manufactured by general motors corporation. Owners may also contact the national highway traffic safety administration's vehicle safety hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (tty 1-800-424-9153), or go to <a href=http://www. Safercar. Gov>http://www. Safercar. Gov</a>.


    Was there another recall for steering other than that?
    Last edited by CycoPuppet; 05-08-2013 at 04:12 PM. Reason: Found new information.
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  13. #13 Re: Introduction and a question. 
    Killa Bee Scottydoggs's Avatar
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    its a free phone call, they can tell you for sure if your covered or not.

    strut, test them, push on the front fender push it down, does it stop bouncing with in 3 bounces, should stop in one or more.

    strut mounts can be changed, i took my struts off bought new mounts, 30 a side, then dropped the struts and mounts off at the front end shop, they charged me 30 to install the new mounts. you need air tools, and a spring compressor to change the mounts, 30 bucks is the safe easy way to go.

    de greasing the engine, just dont soak the alt down, other then that you can blast the whole engine and trans, top to bottom.

    clean the engine, then determine whats leaking, fix as needed.

    the grinding sound, i dont think thats a strut mount, they knock over bumps, axles or brakes, or a bad hub can grind tho.

    98 Buick Regal GS, F body brakes, Caddy STS wheels, tinted tails L36 bottom end, lightly ported heads, 1.95 roller rockers, headers, gen 5 N* 3.0 pulley, FSIC, 42 lb injectors, a BrandonHall rebuilt trans, DHP tuned and AEM water/Meth injection https://goo.gl/gpV5kW
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  14. #14 Re: Introduction and a question. 
    Turbo is the way to go. BillBoost37's Avatar
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    I wouldn't suggest replacing only the RF strut. Do all four, get the alignment once and you'll be much happier. Plus the old spring vs new etc. May make the car sit funny etc. On the cost. Anything under original ride quality is what I'd recommend, the Raybestos ones appear to be about $90 each. Personally though, Raybestos is known for brakes, not struts. I'd go with teh monroe or moog.

    PS and degreasing. It would help if you had the passenger front tire off.
    I drink..so consider that when reading my posts.

    2010 Audi A6 Dual IC's
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  15. #15 Re: Introduction and a question. 
    Killa Bee Scottydoggs's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CycoPuppet View Post
    Is there a way to find that out online? I saw a sticker somewhere on my car, I think the driver side door, that said where it was made. If it is one of the recalled cars, does this mean I can get it fixed for nothing?


    Was there another recall for steering other than that?

    no thats a dorman recall you found, this is a dealer warranty, the recall is for some cars that were built in 2 plants, between such and such years. you need to call a GM dealer to know for sure.

    98 Buick Regal GS, F body brakes, Caddy STS wheels, tinted tails L36 bottom end, lightly ported heads, 1.95 roller rockers, headers, gen 5 N* 3.0 pulley, FSIC, 42 lb injectors, a BrandonHall rebuilt trans, DHP tuned and AEM water/Meth injection https://goo.gl/gpV5kW
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  16. #16 Re: Introduction and a question. 
    Turbo is the way to go. BillBoost37's Avatar
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    ^^ What Scotty is saying is write down your vin and call a dealer or the GM 800 number and mention that you recently purchased the car and would like to confirm that there are no outstanding recalls on your car.
    I drink..so consider that when reading my posts.

    2010 Audi A6 Dual IC's
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  17. #17 Re: Introduction and a question. 
    Killa Bee Scottydoggs's Avatar
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    thats call a dealer 3 times, i hope he gets it by now......lol

    98 Buick Regal GS, F body brakes, Caddy STS wheels, tinted tails L36 bottom end, lightly ported heads, 1.95 roller rockers, headers, gen 5 N* 3.0 pulley, FSIC, 42 lb injectors, a BrandonHall rebuilt trans, DHP tuned and AEM water/Meth injection https://goo.gl/gpV5kW
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  18. #18 Re: Introduction and a question. 
    Turbo is the way to go. BillBoost37's Avatar
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    Hey ... Cyco.. you came up with an ingenious way to say you were nuts..

    We can only say "call the dealer" so many ways.
    I drink..so consider that when reading my posts.

    2010 Audi A6 Dual IC's
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  19. #19 Re: Introduction and a question. 
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    So when you say dealer, do you mean the guy I bought it from, or the actual dealer he bought it from? And my car didn't come with VIN numbers, they are scratched off as a way to de-badge or stealthing the car.


    Geez guys, I got it after the first reply I am mechanically challenged, not mentally challenged. I just ask questions to be certain, I'm very inquisitive with a bit of CDO. It's like OCD, but with the letters in alphabetical order - like they're supposed to be.

    Anyway, about the struts, my GF thinks I should just get the mount and deal with a bumpy ride. I don't think that's good for the car let alone me. I am tempted to rip them out of the Impala and put them in myself.

    I'm gonna be degreasing/cleaning my car this weekend, hopefully, and see what's really going on in there. Should probably call that dealer guy too.
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  20. #20 Re: Introduction and a question. 
    Killa Bee Scottydoggs's Avatar
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    call any GM dealer, you have your vin, its on your registration, and the title to the car, as well as on the lower driver side of the dash, you look at it through the windshield.

    buick, caddy, chevy, even a gmc dealer could help, its just them looking up your vin #, it tells them everything.

    or google up the GM 800 phone #.

    98 Buick Regal GS, F body brakes, Caddy STS wheels, tinted tails L36 bottom end, lightly ported heads, 1.95 roller rockers, headers, gen 5 N* 3.0 pulley, FSIC, 42 lb injectors, a BrandonHall rebuilt trans, DHP tuned and AEM water/Meth injection https://goo.gl/gpV5kW
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