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 Prospective 95 owner

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zuccoja
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Name : joe zucco
Age : 63
Location : Pana Il.
Joined : 2010-01-01
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PostSubject: Prospective 95 owner   Prospective 95 owner EmptyFri Jan 01, 2010 9:29 pm

Hi all.My name is Joe Zucco and I hope to by an immaculate 95.I checked your FAQ for a lot of info,but what I'd really like is a check list of items my mechanic should look for specific to these cars.I always liked this last gen.body style and this is rust free with an interior that really is flawless.The milage is 112K.I just don't have any Riviera gearheads where I'm located to help me look for possible trouble spots on this SC car.Any help would really be appreciated.Thanks Joe Zucco.
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albertj
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albertj

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Location : Finger Lakes of New York State
Joined : 2007-05-31
Post Count : 7407
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PostSubject: Re: Prospective 95 owner   Prospective 95 owner EmptyFri Jan 01, 2010 11:10 pm

...best bet is to use 'search' function on these pages and make a list of the issues people have posted about the '95s.

...since your '95 is/sounds so clean, I suspect your biggest issue will be non-availability of various parts.

You've been around a while so you probably know the following, so it's for the benefit of those who don't.

Like any car you're buying used you might consider making the bill of sale "subject to mechanics inspection" and have a mechanic *other than* the dealer run diagnostics. Just be sure to write 'subject to mechanics inspection' on the bill of sale. Before you sign it.

This does not mean let the house mechanic pull the codes, it means to have an independent mechanic give the car a 'safety inspection' (such as your state - Illinois?) may require or that they may offer for marketing, *and* that they connect the car to a Sun (by snap-on) or similar diagnostic machine and run a set of diagnostics. The diagnostics would likely include:

Cranking start/warm-up test including battery cold-cranking and total amps, as well as startup emissions; these tell you if the battery/starter are OK or if there is unusual load at startup, too-high emissions, and such.

Cruise tests including alternator output, emissions, air/fuel ratio; these tell you if there's issues with alternator, fuel supply or metering (maybe the throttle body is just dirty).

Idle test: look at emissions, electronic and mechanical operation at idle, and (again) emissions.

Base Timing Screen: RPM gauge; measurement of timing and engine temperature. Basically this is to see if the car's base timing has been set off-spec. *why* that might be is a different kettle of fish, but at least you'll know.

kV test: This checks the output and timing of ignition operation. If nothing's wrong with the PCM and the coils this will be in spec.

Power balance: This stells you basically of the engine is wearing evenly.

You also should to have the mechanic do a compression test and a cylinder leakdown test - they turn off ignition, crank car and see how long the cylinders each hold compression. Tells you if the engine is worn to the point of needing rebuilt. Unfortunately I don't know the compression the series I or series II normal-aspirated 3800 engines are supposed to have but I suspect someone else can post this.

It should cost under $200 (maybe as little as $50 depending on the shop) to do this set of diagnostics.

If any of the diagnostics are off spec then (at least in Pennsylvania or New York) you can renegotate or cancel the sale because the car failed mechanic's inspection (had parameters out of spec). In practice however what usually happens is the dealership repairs the problem(s) if they have their own shop, or gives on the price if they don't.

Good luck.

Albertj
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robotennis61
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robotennis61

Name : robotennis
Age : 58
Location : las vegas
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PostSubject: Re: Prospective 95 owner   Prospective 95 owner EmptyFri Jan 01, 2010 11:25 pm

all of the above. don't forget the suspension. the front struts go quick on these cars as do the rears.(quick is relative of course) my rears took a dump @ 125 or so,i ran them allot longer before swapping them out. my fronts died around the same time and there too i rode quite a time before having the $ to change em out. in my experience with the car, the air idle control valve gets filthy quickly and needs cleaning. the s/c oil need to be checked also periodically too.
the don'ts. don't have the tranny flushed. ever. just change the filter along with new oil and you'll be fine. don't run anything but premium.ever. the riv loves synthetic oil. indulge her.
last but not least,tuck her in at night,otherwise she might not indulge you with a morning start..... beer
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playa
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playa

Name : Mark
Age : 41
Location : Newberg, OR
Joined : 2009-03-17
Post Count : 338
Merit : 10

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PostSubject: Re: Prospective 95 owner   Prospective 95 owner EmptySat Jan 02, 2010 1:10 am

My advice Joe would be if possible, go to a later year model. Some would disagree but 98/99 by far had all or most quirks dealt with and alot less problems.

That said, with your car here's what to look for. Supercharger coupler is probably on it's way out if it hasn't been dealt with previously. They normally go 100k miles or so - check that out.

Coolant- Look to see the condition. The GM red stuff has been known to gunk up pretty bad and I've heard it's from air in the system or from blending different types of collant but make sure that's in good shape.

I'm not sure why you don't do a flush on the tranny? I do one every 15,000 or so and do a filter drop every 30,000 so. Hopefully I'm not messing mine up:(

Premium gas a must, sysnthetic oil not necessary at this point with that mileage (I've always heard you either start with synthetic or don't - you can't go half-way).

Check (meaning google) all the bulletins and recalls on 95s and see what the issues were - give's you a good idea of what to expect
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robotennis61
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robotennis61

Name : robotennis
Age : 58
Location : las vegas
Joined : 2007-12-17
Post Count : 5561
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PostSubject: Re: Prospective 95 owner   Prospective 95 owner EmptySat Jan 02, 2010 1:38 am

tranny flushes can be done provided they are done from when the motor is new and thereafter. the possibility of the cleaning solvents involved in a tranny flush loosening the remaining friction material from the older clutch discs go up. don't do it if you don't know the history of the car.
contrary to public opinion syn oil can be done at any time during the life of the car. go regular for a few thou..go syn for a few thou..don't have the money..go back to reg...then you have money ,go back to syn..and so on. the slickness of syn oil can lead to seepage if the gaskets are somewhat failing. this is less frequent with reg oil....
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