1988 Allante Electronics Problems
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Cadillac Allante Forum Discussion, 1988 Allante Electronics Problems in Past Cadillac Vehicle Discussion; We recently purchaced a 1988 Allante that had 115k miles and ran great though I have noticed the information center ...
  1. #1
    SouthernGypsy is offline Cadillac Owners Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Ozarks of Arkansas
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    1988 Allante Electronics Problems

    We recently purchaced a 1988 Allante that had 115k miles and ran great though I have noticed the information center keeps telling us things such as "Low Coolant Level", "ABS System Failure" (goes right back off), "Low Fuel Something'er other" (can't read it all because display screen is dark in middle), "A/C compressor OFF". You can press the "reset" button and clear them all after about 5 presses (though the ABS one comes back momentarly everytime you hit the brakes with any level of hardness).

    I have checked all of these items and found nothing wrong, all of the fluid levels are fine. Now owning it for 2k later the radio has completly quit coming on at all, and the heater (which worked great when we bought it) wont heat at all.

    Soon after we bought it my wife moved the drivers seat up, now it wont go back, seems only 1 or 2 of all of those seat positioning switches works at all, don't even make a sound from the motors underneith. The passenger seat doesnt move either but you can hear the motors underneith TRYING to move it.

    Yesterday was the last straw, I had a new battery put in it and they apperantly pulled at some of the wires back there in that area just a little and all of the sudden my fuel gauge (which was working fine) is showing no reading (flat empty) and the low fuel warning light is on. I found two wires near the battery that are in a strangely shapped connector together and are not connected to anything so figgured they pulled them loose from the tank sending unit. Only I can't FIND the sending unit.

    Can anyone tell me where the wires connect to the fuel level sending unit and does anyone have any suggestions why this car always thinks fluid levels are low that arn't?

    This car was has been mostly garage kept and still has the hardtop on it (I don't think she hardly ever took the hardtop off actually) but these little problems and annoyances are just really starting to get to us.

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  3. #2
    shavdog is offline Cadillac Owners Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
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    9

    Re: 1988 Allante Electronics Problems

    If you dont already, you need to have the service manual for you 88allante..they are available on ebay and other places....after reading about your problems, which seem like alot, glad i bought a motorcycle..i'd make a list and tackle them one at a time...also go to the allante owners group website, join the organization and ask a few questions...they are very knowledgeable and helpful...good luck....was this car purchased as a fixerupper?..i would look at and resolve your brake issues first....its rather important..

  4. #3
    SouthernGypsy is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Feb 2006
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    Ozarks of Arkansas
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    7

    Re: 1988 Allante Electronics Problems

    Thanks, and no, it wasn't purchaced as a fixer upper at all, it is beautiful and runs perfect. That's the problem, I believe all these "errors" reported by the DIC are erronous. I've checked the reported areas and can't find any faults. It's just very annoying to have it light up that darn warning lamp on the dash and display all this information about "problems" that don't actually exist such as "low coolant level" when it is in fact full both in the main system and in the over-flow bottle, low brake fluid level, when again it's full, etc. ... Just stull like that which it thinks are wrong but when I check them they are fine.

    I'm about ready to just yank the whole darn DIC unit and that ancient radio and put in a DVD screen navigation system with moden CD/Mp3 player/changer to take up the space... They'd be about the right size to fill the space currently taken up by the radio and maybe the DIC as well. Though with my luck the darn car would quit running, having the DIC thing may be a requirement for the cars computer.

    I did FINALLY find the lead wire to the fuel gauge sending unit that was accidentally pulled loose when the battery was replaced. The only thing I haven't figgured out is why the radio wont power on, it seems to be internal to the radio itself. The seats still have an issue with not all of the controls working but I know what the problem is, the switches are just old and have quit working reliably. I need a new pair of control switch sets (though for now I'd settle for a good wiring diagram of the seat).

    The only other problems are just simple poor design issues in the desgn of the floor console, the plastic has cracked from people leaning their weight on the arm rest as they get in and out. Only way to fix it is a new armrest, I think the later models had a better design, I know I seen a '92 that looked like the floor console was better built. I do need that plastic piece that goes in the center top of the windshield with the lights in it but again, that's just age, the plastic has cracked so it no longer holds the vistors in the position you put them in so they (at least the passenger side) just falls back down to a hanging position.

    We did find an article on adjusting the "pull down" for the hardtop and soft top and it worked great, they both now pull down like they are supposed to without it continually recycling like it had been. We both think it's cuter with the black soft top up than it is with the hardtop installed.

    You know we originally set out to find a nice '96-'98 Eldorado ETC. Maybe we should have stuck with that plan

  5. #4
    carnut is online now Cadillac Owners Master
    Automobile(s): 1988 Allante' (sold), 1984 Eldorado, 84 Sedan DeVille
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
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    california
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    Re: 1988 Allante Electronics Problems

    Usually you can clean the seat switch contacts with RADIO SHACK tuner cleaner. The switch is easily removed from the seat to get a better shot at it. I would highly recommend having the brake fluid flushed. Should be done yearly. Do a search for allantesource.com. His web site details the checking of the ABS system. The brake warning light should NOT come on during a quick stop, only when you hit them hard enough that a wheel might skid. Given the mileage, I would think the ABS accumulator is weak, not holding reserve assist. Sometimes rebooting the radio restores it, gain access to the reciever with the glove box liner removed. The actual radio is behind the glove box, you will see the antenna lead going to it. Remove the plug -in wiring to it, clean it, apply dielectric grease to the connector and reinsert it. These cars tend to get corroded connectors, so unplugging connectors applying the dielectric grease helps this from re occuring. Also cleaning the body grounds is important. one is on the block just above the starter, another is shock tower right side, and a hidden one is just above the park brake once the lower panel is removed. You will see multiple wires joined on a single stud. Remove the nut, remove the wires and shine them up and reinstall. Also one more ground on the alternator stud, again, remove the wires, clean and reinstall. dielectric grease is sold at any auto parts house, its primary use is on spark plug wire connectors and boots.

  6. #5
    SouthernGypsy is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Feb 2006
    Location
    Ozarks of Arkansas
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    7

    Re: 1988 Allante Electronics Problems

    I have dielectric grease and keep TV tuner cleaner around for use on my other classice cars. I did go out and remove the glove box and didn't see anything that looked like it would be a part of the radio beyond the lead from the antenna which was not plugged into anything, just hanging back there.
    There are also two cables with some very thin green and white wires coming out of them that just end, no plugs on the ends and they're not connected to anything... the previous owner had an under-dash CD player installed directly under the glove box so those wires may have been a part of that though they look like they could be factory.

    I had plans of cleaning my seat contacts, I actually want to totally remove the seats to shampoo the carpets good underneith (something I do to all my new aquisitions) and well as get to the under seat connections and clean them. But I can't get to the bolts to remove the seats if I can't move the seat forward or backward. I don't suppose you know which two wires I could jump across on the backside of those switches to make the seat move backwards? I have already had the switch pulled out as far as the wires would allow and tried but couldn't find any of them that would make the seat move at all. So right now that's my biggest concern because being 6'2 and having a seat slid 2/3 - 3/4 of the way forward makes the car a bit uncomforatable to drive and much more so just getting in and out of it. If the steering wheel didn't tilt and telescope forward and upwards I wouldn't be able to get in it at all.

    I have searched the web and can't find any wiring diagrams for it except on pay sites, I've never had a car before that I couldn't do a search for the cars name + wiring + diagram in a webcrawler and get some hits back on sites with scaned copies available online. The local stores don't have any shop manuals for it, and the ones on eBay are outragiously priced in comparison to most manuals and will still take over a week to get.

  7. #6
    Dom D'Allante is offline Cadillac Owners Member
    Automobile(s): 87 Allante
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Posts
    20

    Re: 1988 Allante Electronics Problems

    There is an exit button on the drivers seat control. That should push the seat back. I have an 87 that sometime gets stuck.

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