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jbeganny
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Name : John Beganny
Location : Litchfield, Maine
Joined : 2011-09-05
Post Count : 120
Merit : 2

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PostSubject: Late model Rivs   Late model Rivs EmptyWed Oct 31, 2012 10:56 pm

I'm pretty sure this won't win me any popularity contest but here goes. I own two Rivs. One is a 63 which runs like a charm and give me no problems. The other is a 95 that was previously owned by a little old lady. I bought it almost one year ago with 59K on it. I won't go into detail here but it has had issues since I got it. After new wires and plugs it runs very well but there always seems to be an issue. I have been reading this forum for almost a year now and I have come to the conclusion that the 95's are nothing but trouble. I have read about so many weird problems, especially with the 95. And because they went to series 2 in 96, so many of these issues are specific to the 95. It seems like the later models have problems as well but I guess I haven't paid as much attention to them since mine is a 95, I have to ask, if I purchased a 96 or later, will I have better luck? I have friends who own older Caddys and Chevys and none of them have the number of problems that you guys have. Why is that? I really love this 95 but the numerous issues drive me nuts. I'll probably never sell my 63 but this 95 may have to go. What does anyone think? Am I crazy?
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abaucom
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Name : Al Baucom
Location : Ottawa Ontario
Joined : 2010-03-28
Post Count : 225
Merit : 22

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PostSubject: Re: Late model Rivs   Late model Rivs EmptyThu Nov 01, 2012 7:12 am

Interesting topic so hope you get some answers. Can not help because I have a 1998.
Might help if you tell us some of the problems you experienced. Some issues might be because the 1995 was the first run of a new model, some issues might be because the car sat for long periods of time and not maintained. Example: my 1998 has about 68,000 miles but seldom driven. When I drive it is usually only short distances to and from work and my Riv is winter stored indoors late Nov.-mid April. It developed some A/C issues because I seldom used my A/C. Something about fluid draining away from important seals so seals dry out. My mechanic told me to run the A/C even when I don't need it. So now I drive it a little more and run the A/C at least for about 10 mins. even when I don't need it to cool.
From my experience (been driving since 1967 and buying new since 1970) is the first run of some new models tend to have more issues and the bugs get worked out in the following model years. My latest experience is with the Camaro. 2010 models (introduced 2009) tend to have many of the same issues, however, my 2011 model which is more or less identical and was made in the 2nd month of 2011 model production (mid 2010) has none of the issues owners reported on their 2010 models. In other words most of the bugs reported on 2010 models were resolved at start of 2011 model production.
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1998 Riv
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1998 Riv

Name : Dave
Age : 59
Location : In The AZ Oven
Joined : 2007-01-17
Post Count : 4502
Merit : 44

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PostSubject: Re: Late model Rivs   Late model Rivs EmptyThu Nov 01, 2012 9:56 am

When I started shopping for my Riv 5-6 yrs ago, I did a lot of research online to find out what kind of quality/durability/repair history issues these cars had. It quickly became clear to me that I wanted nothing to do with the first couple years models, and ended up looking for 98/99 cars only, since they all were supercharged. Some early model owners seem to have endless issues, others not so much. Besides being a 95, you could simply have a factory lemon too.
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robotennis61
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robotennis61

Name : robotennis
Age : 58
Location : las vegas
Joined : 2007-12-17
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PostSubject: Re: Late model Rivs   Late model Rivs EmptyThu Nov 01, 2012 9:58 am

My 95 has alot of issues too.mostly electrical.I dont think the 95s do very well in the heat disipation dept. I really think adding a external engine oil cooler and trans cooler helps keep electrical connections from baking. I know the manual sez 200deg is the operating temp of our engine,i dont agree that the surrounding components should suffer because of it. Since adding a trans cooler with integral fan,my engine bay temps have dropped significantly.I can now open the hood without getting a blast of super hot air. I also removed the bulkhead rubber seal,the one thats runs the length of the firewall just in front of the wipers,that helped alot with the heat.since the engine compartment is so confined,anything you can do to get the heat out is a good thing.
I also see many 95s with their electrical connections covered in old thick sticky oil and soot. Its a good practice to unhook every connection suseptible to fouling. Spray off the connections with electrical cleaner,dry and give the connections a dab of dilectric grease and reconnect.
I also dont think its a good idea that the OEM plug wires run under the S/C under the alternator and out the back to the rear cylinder head. Running the wires so close together can cause RF problems and maybe other issues.I know jack all about electronics and the such but this was what a tech over at Jacobs electronics told me. I run the wires over the top of the S/C and they are held in place with a set of Moroso steel wire holders well above the fuel rail.
The wire loom out back that holds the oil pressure sensor and knock sensor and a couple others is really in a bad spot. any leak the car develops will drown these connectors in crap. make sure you look those over real good.clean and reconnect.
removing the S/C fancy plastic cover will keep trapped heat from cooking the fuel rails.I wrapped my fuel rails with reflective fiberglass heat tape.works good.
The car runs better now with the measures I've taken.

I should add,wrapping the crossover pipe is a good idea.The pipe runs right under the throttle body where the maf sensor and other sensitive electronic components are. Wrap it real good with header wrap.The 95 headers or maniflods,dont take too well to being wrapped. The header wrap holds down alot of heat, keeping the heat in the pipes and out the muffler, but the chance of the headers cracking is very high.I had mine wrapped and twice they cracked.I got sick of welding them back together.I now have just the crossover pipe wrapped. I dont know if cracking is an issue for the series 2 guys who run SS headers.None of my business because a header is not available for the 95s.
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deekster_caddy
Master


Name : Derek
Age : 47
Location : Reading, MA
Joined : 2007-01-31
Post Count : 7717
Merit : 109

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PostSubject: Re: Late model Rivs   Late model Rivs EmptyThu Nov 01, 2012 11:04 am

Similar to Dave, I was looking specifically for '98-'99 models after reading about all the different revisions over the years. Although I don't have my '98 anymore, my brother is still driving it and racking up the miles heavily. It has not been 100% trouble free (it is 14 years old) but the problems I had were mostly brought on by me, so I was never surprised or let down.
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AA
Administrator
AA

Name : Aaron
Age : 42
Location : C-bus, Ohio
Joined : 2007-01-13
Post Count : 18370
Merit : 241

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PostSubject: Re: Late model Rivs   Late model Rivs EmptyThu Nov 01, 2012 12:48 pm

This is really not that surprising. Just about every model that is completely new to the market (ei. new, special model, not borrowing parts from other models) will have bugs that need to be worked out. Every auto manufacturer works this way: US, Euro, Asian cars included. They use test results and feedback from customers to fix these issues, and to improve the performance and quality of the car. Usually it takes 3-5 years to get things right, or about the sales life for most models.

Example: last gen (04-06) Pontiac GTOs - started in '04 with 350HP, then got 400HP on '05. Had an issue with the suspension where it would wear the edges of the tires, some struts were defective on early models.

Another example: E46 (01-06) BMW M3s - got improved brakes after '02, and had a defective rod bearing design (recall) through '04. These are two very critical areas for a performance oriented sedan like the M3!

Regarding the older Cadis and Chevies, depending on the year, the Cadis usually borrow tried and true technology from the lower marques. When they do try something new for Cadillac, my understanding is, "you'd better be able to afford to fix it." Take the NorthStar engine, for example. Great idea, very capable, but look how long it took for them to get it right. Chevy on the other hand, typically uses technology that trickles down from the higher levels (Cadillac and formerly Olds and Pontiac). Once it's proven, Chevy gets it, often years later, but at least it works. Also, Chevy is a value line and doesn't really need to push the envelope with technology, luxury, or performance, with exception of Corvette. If you keep things simple, there's a better chance of avoiding complications.

_________________
'98 SC Riviera • 281k miles • 298 HP/370 TQ • 0-60: 5.79s • ET: 13.97 @ 99.28 • 4087 lb • 20.1 avg MPG • Nelson Ledges Lap: 1:30
3.4" pulley • AL104 plugs • 180º t-stat • FWI w/K&N • 1.9:1 rockers • OR pushrods • LS6 valve springs • SLP headers • ZZP fuel rails
KYB GR2 struts • MaxAir shocks • Addco sway bars • UMI bushings • GM STB • Enkei 18" EV5s w/ Dunlop DZ101s • F-body calipers
EBC bluestuff/Hawk HP plus • SS lines • Brembo slotted discs • DHP tuned • Aeroforce • Hidden Hitch

^^^ SOLD ^^^ frown

'05 GTO • 85k miles • 0-60: 4.8s • 16.9 avg MPG • Nelson Ledges Lap: 1:26
Because fun


'70 Olds Ninety-Eight Holiday Coupe • 116k miles • 455 Rocket V8
Because cool


'95 Celica • 152k miles • 0-60: yes
Because free
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http://www.cardomain.com/ride/657082/4
Riv95SC
Enthusiast
Riv95SC

Name : Riv95SC
Location : Nashville, TN
Joined : 2010-05-30
Post Count : 115
Merit : 5

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PostSubject: Re: Late model Rivs   Late model Rivs EmptyThu Nov 01, 2012 10:36 pm

Sorry to hear you've had so many problems, jbeganny.

I have to say, though, I don't think all '95s fall into that same category. Mine has been pretty reliable, and it's an early-production unit--built spring '94.

Although not completely trouble-free (it just lately needed a water pump), in general I'm satisfied with it. And as deekster says, these cars are 15 years old and some normal wear items are inevitable.

Probably, as so often with GM, there was just variability in the quality--you might have got a "Monday car" as they used to call them--that was supposed to be the lowest quality build day.
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albertj
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albertj

Name :
Location : Finger Lakes of New York State
Joined : 2007-05-31
Post Count : 7570
Merit : 153

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PostSubject: Re: Late model Rivs   Late model Rivs EmptyThu Nov 01, 2012 11:51 pm

jbeganny wrote:
I'm pretty sure this won't win me any popularity contest but here goes. I own two Rivs. One is a 63 which runs like a charm and give me no problems. The other is a 95 that was previously owned by a little old lady. I bought it almost one year ago with 59K on it. I won't go into detail here but it has had issues since I got it. After new wires and plugs it runs very well but there always seems to be an issue. I have been reading this forum for almost a year now and I have come to the conclusion that the 95's are nothing but trouble. I have read about so many weird problems, especially with the 95. And because they went to series 2 in 96, so many of these issues are specific to the 95. It seems like the later models have problems as well but I guess I haven't paid as much attention to them since mine is a 95, I have to ask, if I purchased a 96 or later, will I have better luck? I have friends who own older Caddys and Chevys and none of them have the number of problems that you guys have. Why is that? I really love this 95 but the numerous issues drive me nuts. I'll probably never sell my 63 but this 95 may have to go. What does anyone think? Am I crazy?

whether you're selling or keeping the 95 you might want to fix the issues, might want to start by posting a list of your issues in response to this message. IIRC most of the 95s issues can be solved with elbow grease, know-how and know-what from this forum, and a sense of humor.

Albertj


Last edited by albertj on Fri Nov 02, 2012 12:26 am; edited 1 time in total
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robotennis61
Guru
robotennis61

Name : robotennis
Age : 58
Location : las vegas
Joined : 2007-12-17
Post Count : 5561
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PostSubject: Re: Late model Rivs   Late model Rivs EmptyFri Nov 02, 2012 12:11 am

....particularly a sense of humor
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sniperdude
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sniperdude

Name : Mike
Location : Chicago
Joined : 2012-06-04
Post Count : 250
Merit : 18

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PostSubject: Re: Late model Rivs   Late model Rivs EmptyFri Nov 02, 2012 5:56 pm

If you think these cars are bad electrically...

I had a 92 Mercedes Benz 500SEL. Gorgeous frickin' car, v8, 300HP, etc, etc.

The car was plagued by computers that were way too sensitive - with age the harnesses degraded and the car would go into limp mode for anything that would trigger the ASR fault checking computer.

Tried working on it on my own, 12 different mechanics, nobody could figure it out. Ended up trading it off. The early models of that car are a disaster, but the 94+ aren't an issues, since they got rid of ASR with a different chassis monitoring system.

Long story short, early models were usually plagued with wacky shit.
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abaucom
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Name : Al Baucom
Location : Ottawa Ontario
Joined : 2010-03-28
Post Count : 225
Merit : 22

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PostSubject: Re: Late model Rivs   Late model Rivs EmptyFri Nov 02, 2012 7:10 pm

Agree, and will never buy another 1st year new model (see post above regarding my Camaro). Bought new (preordered) a 1996 Chrysler Sebring LXI coupe. Introduced 1995. 1995 -96 Sebring coupes had issues. All issues resolved with 1997 models. I fought and documented from day one of delivery my issues with my 1996. In the end Chrysler totally fixed my 1996 after warranty expired because I had documented issues.

My aunt, when she died, left me her most recent 1998 Riviera. She had been buying white Rivera’s since the mid 1970's when I first drove up with my new 1976 Eldo white convertible.

Her last 1998 Riviera purchase was not sweet. First 1998 Riviera she heard a buzz. Dealership said they could not hear the buzz during test drives. Aunt called me and said the Riv. had a buzz sound and dealership could not find issue. I got on plane and traveled from Dallas TX to Florence SC and drove her Riv. Yes, strange buzz sound. Dealership no help, I contacted regional. Long story short regional rep test drove her Riv., I then explained do not mess with my old lady aunt. GM replaced her Riv with a new one at no expense to my aunt. No buzz sound with the replacement Riv. I now own.
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sniperdude
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sniperdude

Name : Mike
Location : Chicago
Joined : 2012-06-04
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Merit : 18

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PostSubject: Re: Late model Rivs   Late model Rivs EmptyFri Nov 02, 2012 7:18 pm

They replaced the whole car? Holy shit! LOL
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turtleman
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turtleman

Name : Codith
Age : 32
Location : Villa Park, IL
Joined : 2007-02-08
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PostSubject: Re: Late model Rivs   Late model Rivs EmptySat Nov 03, 2012 5:05 pm

From what experiences I've had with this generation riv, the engine and trans are great no matter the year. The electronics and modules that control them and the rest of the car (hvac, security, interior lights, remote,seat controls, anitlock brakes & tcs,etc) are something I worry about. Mid 90's not really a great time in automotive technology to have all the features the car has. Every year has pretty major changes and because of that different parts so even when you have gotten your automotive controls engineering degree so that you can diagnose the problem that dealership master techs will be clueless about, you still have to find the right part to fix it. Alas I have at least 3 electrical/control issues with my car that I've been kinda trying to fix, some of them for a few years now and I'm not exactly an idiot with this stuff. IMHO it's almost more luck than strategy for this car. Plenty of totally problem-free 95's on the road, plenty of newer models with random issues like mine.
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abaucom
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Name : Al Baucom
Location : Ottawa Ontario
Joined : 2010-03-28
Post Count : 225
Merit : 22

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PostSubject: Re: Late model Rivs   Late model Rivs EmptySun Nov 04, 2012 5:05 pm

Yes, GM replaced my aunts 1998 Riv. after 2 months. Aunt and Uncle had been buying Buicks at same SC dealership for 30 years. When my aunt bought her 4th white Riv she heard a buzz. During the first month dealership said they could not duplicate. I contacted GM South Carolina regional office from my home in Texas and said do not mess with my old lady aunt in SC. Bottom line, GM replaced first 98 Riv with another 1998 Riv. and it did not cost my aunt one cent.
Best not to mess with old Southern ladies and best not mess with their Texas nephews.
Vin research indicates I have one of only three 1998 Rivera’s with my options and color. Wonder what happened with the other two matching 1998 Rivera’s?
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