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DaveE_95Riv
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Name : David Egan
Location : Minnesota USA
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PostSubject: Huge problem now   Huge problem now EmptyWed Nov 13, 2013 5:21 pm

Long story longer, driving to St. Paul, wife overheated my '95 Riv. Radiator blew a crack in the side plastic. She probably drove without a clue for some time...Towed back to shop. noticed a miss, and took car to a mechanic I  trust. Bubbles in coolant over-flow tank. #5 cylinder miss. He called and said the rear head gasket blew out. Needs head gaskets, lower intake manifold gaskets. Not sure if any more engine damage.
Spent almost a grand this summer for fuel pump/fuel filter/and rare gas tank, when pump went out, with the  lock ring tabs were rusted out on the tank.
More money, lots now needed on my old gal. Love her, but now time to to just call it a day??


Last edited by DaveE_95Riv on Wed Nov 13, 2013 5:28 pm; edited 1 time in total
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al_roethlisberger
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al_roethlisberger

Name : Al Roethlisberger
Age : 51
Location : Sanford, NC
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PostSubject: First, sorry to hear that. The plastic rad is a weak spot on these cars.   Huge problem now EmptyWed Nov 13, 2013 5:26 pm

What's the mileage on the car?  Condition overall?

If high mileage and/or the condition of the body and interior is rough.... tough call.

If it is just gaskets, you could do those yourself and save a lot of money.   Gaskets are cheap, and it is just your time at that point.

If you don't have the time or skill/confidence to do the gaskets yourself, it could get expensive from a labor perspective.

If more severe engine issues, who knows....

Sorry if that wasn't very helpful, but a few variables there to consider.

Al
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1998 Riv
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1998 Riv

Name : Dave
Age : 59
Location : In The AZ Oven
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PostSubject: Re: Huge problem now   Huge problem now EmptyWed Nov 13, 2013 5:29 pm

Personally, I would make the decision based on the overall condition of the car, how well is it aging? Paint condition, rust, interior, under body and mechanical, vs what you'd have to pay for these repairs. Do you have an estimate?

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DaveE_95Riv
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Name : David Egan
Location : Minnesota USA
Joined : 2013-06-08
Post Count : 20
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PostSubject: Re: Huge problem now   Huge problem now EmptyWed Nov 13, 2013 6:01 pm

Hi all, Car has 135,000. Body and interior is mint. A gold light metallic with Lt. brown. All options. Before I had major health problems, cancer and a stroke, I don't have use of left arm now. Everyday now is great to be alive.
I have experience in body-work and painting cars. I bought a '70 Charger w/440 six-pack and gave her a complete restoration. Engine (except for machining heads/cylinder walls) electrical, suspension, brakes, carpet and headliner. Bodywork and the paint. 70's Dodge Banana yellow w/black interior/stripes. She was sweet. Towed  her up to Brainard,Mn. Race way for the muscle-car shoot-out a couple years. Great experience. This Riv is real nice, and makes it hard to give up on her.
My mechanic is backing away from it... maybe too much work, he's not a young man, I don't know. I would go with changing the gaskets, for the heads and intake. His worry about rods, and other internals really scare me...
I can't go the new car route, my financials were ruined with my health. I'm on permanent disability now. 2-3 grand in the Riv, or buy another used car...
I'd love to wrench on her, but just can't.
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bigdave
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Name : Dave
Age : 56
Location : Cheektowaga , NY (Buffalo)
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PostSubject: Re: Huge problem now   Huge problem now EmptyWed Nov 13, 2013 6:47 pm

Rather then taking a chance of running into other engine damage from running so hot, a used motor could be the most economical choice. I would think a series 1 sc motor could be had for $500. Find a mechanic that does side jobs to throw it in for another $500 and your back in business. It's a decision only you can make and I wish you the best. Car problems are never fun, especially at what this could end up costing. Good luck to ya Dave!
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IFallsRon
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PostSubject: Re: Huge problem now   Huge problem now EmptyWed Nov 13, 2013 7:01 pm

I'd look for a rebuilt or salvage. I've had good luck with John's in Blaine and the yards in Rosemount. West Cambridge currently lists a couple salvage motors w/o SC.
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matt270avian
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matt270avian

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PostSubject: Re: Huge problem now   Huge problem now EmptyWed Nov 13, 2013 7:28 pm

Instead of a used S1, why not get a used S2/S3? I couldn't imagine much more than 1k for the parts, then whatever labor would be.
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deekster_caddy
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Name : Derek
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PostSubject: Re: Huge problem now   Huge problem now EmptyWed Nov 13, 2013 7:39 pm

matt270avian wrote:
Instead of a used S1, why not get a used S2/S3? I couldn't imagine much more than 1k for the parts, then whatever labor would be.
It's not a direct swap at all.

I agree with others - look for a used Series 1 SC 3800 and go for a motor swap. Should be less money and more reliable fix in the end. Make sure you get the engine from a place with a warranty!!!
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matt270avian
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matt270avian

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PostSubject: Re: Huge problem now   Huge problem now EmptyWed Nov 13, 2013 10:23 pm

I wasn't saying it would be a direct swap, but it wouldn't exactly be indirect either. If I understood right he had the N/A 95, which means it would be a S2 without the supercharger. So theoretically an L67 with PCM would go right in. Even if it was an S1 it's been done before, but then budget comes back into play.
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bigdave
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Name : Dave
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PostSubject: Re: Huge problem now   Huge problem now EmptyWed Nov 13, 2013 11:00 pm

I assumed he had a supercharged engine because he said his car had all options.
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matt270avian
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matt270avian

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PostSubject: Re: Huge problem now   Huge problem now EmptyWed Nov 13, 2013 11:18 pm

No big deal, I always assume that the 95's have an S1. It's so rare to see one with an S2, and I think there's only 1 95 with an S3.
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DaveE_95Riv
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Name : David Egan
Location : Minnesota USA
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PostSubject: Re: Huge problem now   Huge problem now EmptyThu Nov 14, 2013 7:46 am

Wow, thanks for all the interest!! It is the '95 supercharged V-6. My mechanic has had his own shop for 20 years, I have to respect his experience and time in it. He has real concerns in finding more damage once the heads are off, and total cost of fixing could easily double, or more. It Would be foolish to try and fix. A sad day, even the wife cried..
So guys, what are the engines I should look for exactly, that would be best to look for in matching the electronics/fit? Have to be believe there are a lot of 3800's out there. The series one did have a lower deck from what I've read. Finding a series 1 3800 local and rebuilt would be too much to expect I would bet. Although Pontiac did put some out there too.. A series 2 be a problem? I wouldn't think the intake manifold or supercharger would have been damaged by all the heat below them? Although my old intake wouldn't fit down in a series 2 engine.
Having never purchased a engine before, would I have to look in the Mpls/St.Paul area alone, as shipping a 500 pound item would cost so much? Is e-bay an option?
Is it rare that someone selling a re-built engine puts a warranty on them? Thanks again for your help guys, this is new territory I'm in now.
Oh, by the way, I changed the engine oil only about 500 miles ago, Mobil 1 extended performance synthetic. I thought the engine was bullet-proof. Well, super heat, failing gaskets, I guess due to radiator failure can happen. Ouch...now I know better.


Last edited by DaveE_95Riv on Thu Nov 14, 2013 8:40 am; edited 1 time in total
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DaveE_95Riv
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Name : David Egan
Location : Minnesota USA
Joined : 2013-06-08
Post Count : 20
Merit : 0

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PostSubject: Re: Huge problem now   Huge problem now EmptyThu Nov 14, 2013 8:31 am

Also, I don't really know what to expect to look for in prices for an engine. A quick look for time on an engine install, I found around 13 shop hours, does that sound right?
Thanks, Dave.
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AA
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AA

Name : Aaron
Age : 43
Location : C-bus, Ohio
Joined : 2007-01-13
Post Count : 18417
Merit : 245

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PostSubject: Re: Huge problem now   Huge problem now EmptyThu Nov 14, 2013 8:40 am

The engine can probably be found for $600-900, and shipping isn't that bad. To a shop or business, I'd guess $150-200 freight if you check around. The real expense will be paying the mechanic. Probably $1000 at least for the swap, but shop around and maybe you find something less.

3800s are generly bulletproof, but there are a few universal rules. Some engines can run a while with little or no oil, but I've never heard of one that would run long without coolant. Still the #1 cause of engine failure across the board is overheating. Sorry to hear this happened to you. I blew my engine last year, so know exactly how you feel!

_________________
'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


Last edited by AA on Thu Nov 14, 2013 9:00 am; edited 1 time in total
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bigdave
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Name : Dave
Age : 56
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PostSubject: Re: Huge problem now   Huge problem now EmptyThu Nov 14, 2013 8:42 am

Dave, if you trust your mechanic and he is interested in replacing your motor, he should know where to find a motor for you. Most if not all salvage yards will deliver a motor to his shop at no charge. Same goes for suppliers of remanufactured motors.

If going used, I am pretty sure the motor is '95 only, if you want a direct swap. Bonneville, Park Ave and Oldsmobile LS have the same motor as Riviera. Salvage yards will know what fits. Just tell them year and make of your car and VIN 1 (8th digit of VIN is a 1 on sc cars, K on NA). I have replaced a few of these motors with used ones. Never had a problem with any of them. Even with well over 100,000 miles, they have plenty of life left.

One of the easiest motors to swap out that I have ever done. Only one bolt that is tough to get at the first time you do one. Piece of cake the second time. My son and I had his motor out and in, and running in 3 hours once.
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bigdave
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Name : Dave
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Huge problem now Empty
PostSubject: Re: Huge problem now   Huge problem now EmptyThu Nov 14, 2013 8:52 am

AA, can you recant your statement of engines running with little or no oil? I wouldn't want anyone to get the wrong idea. I would say a car without coolant could run safely for 10 minutes easily. A car with no oil? Ten seconds.
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1998 Riv
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1998 Riv

Name : Dave
Age : 59
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PostSubject: Re: Huge problem now   Huge problem now EmptyThu Nov 14, 2013 2:46 pm

Well, there's a difference between running, and running safely. He certainly didn't mean it was safe or a good idea to do so.
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AA
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AA

Name : Aaron
Age : 43
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PostSubject: Re: Huge problem now   Huge problem now EmptyThu Nov 14, 2013 5:05 pm

My thinking is based on percentages of fluids in the system, and the resulting types of failures. With most engines generally you can get closer to empty with oil than with coolant before a catastrophic failure occurs. You're right though, total loss of oil pressure is usually fatal for the engine. Usually but not always. And it takes almost a complete loss of oil for that to happen. But lose just 1/2 of your coolant and things get really hot real fast.

My wife's Toyota 1.8L has high miles and burns oil on long trips. I usually stay on top on it, but occasionally she takes few drives to see the family and it will get low enough that the red low pressure lamp will come on briefly on start-up. When this happens, the oil level is so low that the dipstick is bone dry, and I have needed to add 3+ quarts of oil on one occasion - full capacity is 3.9 quarts for this engine. The car has 180k+ trouble-free miles and runs solid. Other than the oil level issue it's a near maintenance-free engine. I had a roommate in college who drove the same car and was always low on oil. Eventually that engine died, but it took years of abuse.

There used to be a salesman at the county fair, according to my grandfather, who would run a MOPAR 225 slant 6 engine on a bench. The engine had been treated with a product that he said would coat the internals and offer protection against the unthinkable - complete loss of oil. With the engine running, he would pull the drain plug and let all the oil fall into a pan, then he pulled off the valve covers. Everyone could see the old six was still running dry, apparently protected by his magical additive. I think the real magic was in the slant 6 engine's design. Anyone who's owned one (I have) knows it's amazingly robust; running for a few minutes without oil pressure isn't unthinkable.

Compare these cases with a coolant loss scenario. If you lose a gallon of coolant (still 2/3 full), your engine temperature will rise to unsafe levels within a few minutes. If not shut down, the heads can warp or crack, head gaskets blow, possible other terminal damage. By the time you're completely out of coolant, the engine is dead. Maybe there are some engines known to survive overheating better than others, but I'm not aware of any (3800's iron block could be a candidate). I think this is why overheating is named #1 cause of engine failure from what I've read - because an engine looses half it's coolant more often than all of it's oil.

_________________
'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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IFallsRon
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PostSubject: Re: Huge problem now   Huge problem now EmptyThu Nov 14, 2013 7:06 pm

Search Minneapolis Craigslist for "3800 GM Series 2 Engines LOW LOW MILES."
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bigdave
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Name : Dave
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PostSubject: Re: Huge problem now   Huge problem now EmptyThu Nov 14, 2013 7:13 pm

Series 2 engines won't do him any good. He needs a series 1.
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joshuadalegrimes
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joshuadalegrimes

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PostSubject: Re: Huge problem now   Huge problem now EmptyThu Nov 14, 2013 10:14 pm

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joshuadalegrimes
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PostSubject: Re: Huge problem now   Huge problem now EmptyThu Nov 14, 2013 10:18 pm

http://www.ebay.com/itm/95-RIVIERA-ENGINE-6-231-3-8L-W-SUPERCHARGER-OPT-VIN-1-157382-/390551876425?pt=Motors_Car_Truck_Parts_Accessories&fits=Year%3A1995%7CMake%3ABuick%7CModel%3ARiviera%7CSubmodel%3ABase%7CEngine+-+Liter_Display%3A3.8L&hash=item5aeeb4b349&vxp=mtr
http://www.ebay.com/itm/95-PARK-AVENUE-RIVIERA-Engine-Motor-3-8L-3-8-Supercharged-146K-Miles-3800-Vin-1/390664285983?rt=nc&_trksid=p2047675.m1851&_trkparms=aid%3D222002%26algo%3DSIC.FIT%26ao%3D1%26asc%3D261%26meid%3D2710059604941205583%26pid%3D100005%26prg%3D1088%26rk%3D4%26rkt%3D5%26sd%3D390551876425%26
http://www.ebay.com/itm/95-RIVIERA-ENGINE-6-231-3-8L-W-SUPERCHARGER-OPT-VIN-1-/190571610816?pt=Motors_Car_Truck_Parts_Accessories&fits=Year%3A1995%7CMake%3ABuick%7CModel%3ARiviera%7CSubmodel%3ABase%7CEngine+-+Liter_Display%3A3.8L&hash=item2c5ef402c0&vxp=mtr
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joshuadalegrimes
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joshuadalegrimes

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PostSubject: Re: Huge problem now   Huge problem now EmptyThu Nov 14, 2013 10:19 pm

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joshuadalegrimes
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PostSubject: Re: Huge problem now   Huge problem now EmptyThu Nov 14, 2013 10:21 pm

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joshuadalegrimes
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joshuadalegrimes

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PostSubject: Re: Huge problem now   Huge problem now EmptyThu Nov 14, 2013 10:21 pm

thats all i found on ebay for ya. hope it helped
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Sponsored content




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