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Boondockian
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Any opinions? Its a V6. Thats all I know. I've been without a vehicle for a while and someone I know just spotted this and is even offering to put up some of the money. I'm supposed to go look at it tomorrow. I really want a full size truck and have found several for decent prices so I'm really looking for reasons not to get it.
 

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The 3100/3400 is bad for intake gaskets. I did the LIM gaskets on a 3100 which is basically the same motor as the 3400. As long as they have been done you should be ok. Check the color of the oil and look at the bottom of the oil cap. If there is a white cream that tastes somewhat sweet then its coolant in the oil. If it has no taste then its condensation. Other then that these GM V6s are good motors and you can get a ton of miles out of them.

I heard the Alero/Grand am have sealed transmissions but I cannot be sure. Basically that means there is no dipstick/fill tube. So if it has a leak your average joe drives it until it blows up.

These cars are said to be hard on brakes, but who knows, I think that varies from person to person.

If it has Dex cool make sure to fill the coolant with only Dex cool (orange) and never top it up with the average (green) antifreeze. I have seen a few that had this mix and resulted in gasket failure.
 

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My boy has one with the 2.4... not a bad car, he's put about 40k on it .

We did brakes when he got it, and one axle seal. I checked the tranny fluid then. Yeah.. no dipstick, but no leaks, no worries:rolleyes:
 

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GC/carpenter
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Millworker said:
The 3100/3400 is bad for intake gaskets. I did the LIM gaskets on a 3100 which is basically the same motor as the 3400. As long as they have been done you should be ok. Check the color of the oil and look at the bottom of the oil cap. If there is a white cream that tastes somewhat sweet then its coolant in the oil. If it has no taste then its condensation. Other then that these GM V6s are good motors and you can get a ton of miles out of them. I heard the Alero/Grand am have sealed transmissions but I cannot be sure. Basically that means there is no dipstick/fill tube. So if it has a leak your average joe drives it until it blows up. These cars are said to be hard on brakes, but who knows, I think that varies from person to person. If it has Dex cool make sure to fill the coolant with only Dex cool (orange) and never top it up with the average (green) antifreeze. I have seen a few that had this mix and resulted in gasket failure.
You don't really taste the oil do you?
 

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Boondockian
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·

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GC/carpenter
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Millworker said:
It may seem weird on here but it is common in the car enthusiast world. Your not the first to be shocked by this ;) Trust me I am a big auto buff and the only time my vehicles see a garage is for a oil spray.
What's an oil spray?
 

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I started drinking brake fluid a few years ago. I was underneath my truck bleeding the brakes and a couple drops sprayed right in my mouth and you know what, it tastes fantastic. It turns out that it feels great too. So I got real into it, and I'm up to a couple pints a day. My favorite is Castrol DOT 3. A lot of people get real judgmental when I tell them about it, but here's the thing. I used to have a real problem with alcohol and screwed up my life pretty bad and I still go to meetings. But when I'm on the brake fluid . . . I can stop any time I want.
 

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steex said:
I started drinking brake fluid a few years ago. I was underneath my truck bleeding the brakes and a couple drops sprayed right in my mouth and you know what, it tastes fantastic. It turns out that it feels great too. So I got real into it, and I'm up to a couple pints a day. My favorite is Castrol DOT 3. A lot of people get real judgmental when I tell them about it, but here's the thing. I used to have a real problem with alcohol and screwed up my life pretty bad and I still go to meetings. But when I'm on the brake fluid . . . I can stop any time I want.
Keep on keeping on :thumbsup:
 

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I saw your other thread about the potential vehicles.

Let me offer some advice, not based on specs, but experience...

My whole life I have loved Volkswagens. When I was just out of high school, I bought (with a loan) a 2002 VW GTi 1.8. Awesome car. Awesome. A little more than halfway through the loan, thinking I knew all there was to know about life, I traded it in, and rolled over the remainder of the loan for a 2006 VW GTi 2.0. Once again, I ended up with an awesome car, but I also ended up with a stupid $367/mo payment.

At the time, I was working as a laborer for a pretty substantial commercial contractor (Google: Kids for Cash) and thought life was just grand.

Needless to say, after acquiring tools, becoming a carpenter, and trying to do jobs on the side, hauling all of that around in a "sporty" hatchback is a major pain in the backside.

All in all, if I were you, I'd rather have a truck and have to worry about getting things like ladder racks and tool boxes, with some maintenance, than driving a coupe or hatchback.

Go with the truck.
 

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Boondockian
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I saw your other thread about the potential vehicles.

Let me offer some advice, not based on specs, but experience...

My whole life I have loved Volkswagens. When I was just out of high school, I bought (with a loan) a 2002 VW GTi 1.8. Awesome car. Awesome. A little more than halfway through the loan, thinking I knew all there was to know about life, I traded it in, and rolled over the remainder of the loan for a 2006 VW GTi 2.0. Once again, I ended up with an awesome car, but I also ended up with a stupid $367/mo payment.

At the time, I was working as a laborer for a pretty substantial commercial contractor (Google: Kids for Cash) and thought life was just grand.

Needless to say, after acquiring tools, becoming a carpenter, and trying to do jobs on the side, hauling all of that around in a "sporty" hatchback is a major pain in the backside.

All in all, if I were you, I'd rather have a truck and have to worry about getting things like ladder racks and tool boxes, with some maintenance, than driving a coupe or hatchback.

Go with the truck.
I wish it was that simple. Someone else is loaning me the money for this and they want me to get the car...
 

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Boondockian
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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Turns out the daler selling the a car know what he was talking about. Its a 2.4L 4cyl.

Its got the plastic trim along the bottom of the sides and is pretty rusty in that area. The rear up in behind the bumper is pretty rusty as well. Ended up putting a down payment on it and will be getting it towards th end of the month. Not that I'm entirely happy with it but it gets me a car. mechanically is seems very good although I did see some trans fluid on the underside of the. Apparently the connectors on the transmission lines had rotted out and the mechanic has just replaced them. New brakes as well. The person who is more or less giving me the money for it seems is happy with it and shushed me any time I voiced any problem I saw.:blink:
 

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Head Grunt
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The 2.4 is a good motor. The 3.4 has more to worry about.
Unless your putting a water pump on it or you have a misfire requiring you replace the whole engine cover. Newer engines you could replace the water pump without monkeying with the timing chain as they had a splined shaft but the older engines such as the 99 required breaking into the timing cover to replace the water pump. Other issues with grand ams were strut bearing/insulator problems, sway bar end links, wheel bearings and brakes usually did not last long. Never saw too many tranny issues and yes, they were a sealed system.
 

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Coil pack housing is only $38...


Water pump is ridiculous on that engine.
 

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Head Grunt
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Shows how long it has been since i wrenched on one of them, $38 for a coil pack housing :laughing:. I remember them being a couple hundred back then. Junk would come in with a misfire but no obvious problems like bad plug or carbon tracing so you basically had to shotgun the cover at it and hope you got it right.
 

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If you lived in Ontario Canada you would know about oil spray's
Helps keep them from rusting out in 5 yrs.
Been there done that. ;)
 
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