: Maintenance tips for '95 FWB w/ 117k miles?



caddycruiser
01-28-06, 05:35 PM
Since I just purchased the '95 Brougham with 117k on it earlier this month...

Still away and won't be home until the second week in March to see the car again, but I'm trying to get a good idea of mechanical stuff I should watch out for/change soon, considering the mileage:

Going to do/did already:
1. Changed engine oil & filter, as it looked kinda dirty and was more than due, according to the windshield sticker
2. Lubed the front chassis/suspension
3. Fixed 2 oil cooler line leaks
4. Checked over everything else for leaks, including water pump, trans, etc., and all is well
...
4. Getting transmission fluid & filter replaced soon
5. Checking over ball joints, and a few other bits, to make sure they're good

Car drives tight, smooth, and is very strong, so no apparent issues at the moment.

A few things I'm wondering about:
1. The power steering seems a little bit "whiney" in parking lots, etc., so was considering new fluid
2. Looked like a tiny bit of sediment in the coolant tank, but not 100% sure

It has 117k miles on it, and looks to have been maintained as well as possible, but it's my first LT1 car (the 2 others are 350 TBI's), and I'm just trying to get a handle on what I should do soon/watch out for to keep it primo.

Katshot
01-28-06, 07:37 PM
Replace the P/S fluid, that will probably take care of your noise. If not throw some additive in it. Can't remember the name of the stuff I tried before but it DID work well. The timing chain/gears are usually due around 130-140K miles so unless you're very sure the mileage is real on the car, you might want to start thinking about getting those done. Have the cooling system flushed and refilled. Not sure what you did to fix the oil cooler line leaks but I'd replace the lines. They always go bad. There's another major spot prone to leakage and that's the oil filter adapter. Other than that, have fun with it, they're great cars.

caddycruiser
01-28-06, 07:54 PM
Replace the P/S fluid, that will probably take care of your noise. If not throw some additive in it. Can't remember the name of the stuff I tried before but it DID work well. The timing chain/gears are usually due around 130-140K miles so unless you're very sure the mileage is real on the car, you might want to start thinking about getting those done. Have the cooling system flushed and refilled. Not sure what you did to fix the oil cooler line leaks but I'd replace the lines. They always go bad. There's another major spot prone to leakage and that's the oil filter adapter. Other than that, have fun with it, they're great cars.

Yeah, actually, there were two small holes, kind of, on the oil cooler lines where they are crimped (manufacturing mark, I guess). Did fix them with wrap-around clamps, and after more than two weeks of running (I get phone reports while I'm not there), both are still bone dry and not showing a bit of seepage. They seep on our '93 too, but did the same thing, and they've been good for quite some time. How much does it generally run to replace them with new?

Also, the oil filter adapter WAS bad, noticed when changing the oil, and fixed that...in addition to a pretty much shot oil pan plug that was quite torn up.

So, I guess I'll make sure to do something with the power steering fluid and now also the coolant, I guess. Could just have that done when I get the trans serviced, but I'll see.

I guess the only thing that worries me is the whole Opti thing, but the more reading I do on that front, the more I know.

As for the timing chain and gears, never really considered that one. It makes sense, but after having those replaced at 189k on the Roadmaster (wrong fix to another problem from a wonderful (NOT!) mechanic), which we think was the first time they had been touched, it seemed a worthless repair. I'll still keep it in mind, I guess.

JTraik
01-28-06, 11:19 PM
Yeah, actually, there were two small holes, kind of, on the oil cooler lines where they are crimped (manufacturing mark, I guess). Did fix them with wrap-around clamps, and after more than two weeks of running (I get phone reports while I'm not there), both are still bone dry and not showing a bit of seepage. They seep on our '93 too, but did the same thing, and they've been good for quite some time. How much does it generally run to replace them with new?
Hmmm... I would consider that more of a temp fix. Luckily the oil lines in my 9C1 haven't gone yet, but the ideal replacement would be braided lines just because they are easy to work with and it isnt a pressure dependent system. A little more expensive, but they work well and you have a nice car.

So, I guess I'll make sure to do something with the power steering fluid and now also the coolant, I guess. Could just have that done when I get the trans serviced, but I'll see.
Like Katshot said just flush the coolant system, it needs to be done every few years and who knows when the last time it was done. Make sure you use the bleeder on the water pump!
As for power steering... pull out the turkey baster! Use additive in addition to the new fluid, or get a fluid with additive already in it.

I guess the only thing that worries me is the whole Opti thing, but the more reading I do on that front, the more I know.
As for the timing chain and gears, never really considered that one. It makes sense, but after having those replaced at 189k on the Roadmaster (wrong fix to another problem from a wonderful (NOT!) mechanic), which we think was the first time they had been touched, it seemed a worthless repair. I'll still keep it in mind, I guess.
Yes the optis are known to go, but i wouldnt worry about any ignition fixes unless they are needed. If you think its time for plugs and wires then go for them... it will rule out some things if the opti ever comes in question.
Timing chain and gears is something i wouldnt worry about either... maybe when you have her stored for some time I would check them wear and tightness, other than that you should be fine.
We all seem to spend a lot of time on the things that get your car in motion, how about getting it to a stop? When was the last time your brakes were bled? They should be done once a year to keep moisture out of the system and fresh clean fluid in. Got drums? Take them apart, neverseize the star wheels, adjust them etc.
One more thing i dont think you mentioned is the differential fluid. Diff. fluid should be changed every 100k or less. If you have a posi MAKE SURE you use the proper GM additive for it... dont ask why all i can tell you is that only the GM stuff is supposed to be in there!

caddycruiser
01-29-06, 12:07 AM
More good points, thanks:thumbsup:

1. Lines-yeah, I guess it is sort of a "temp" fix, but it one of my father's "magic fixes" that has been pretty much bullet-proof for over 2 years now on the '93, so I'm pretty confident it will hold for quite some time. Some day I will, definately, get the lines replaced, but for as little as the car will be used for now, it can wait.

2. Coolant--yep, sounds like a good idea, and I'll probably have that done same time as the transmission. Power steering--yeah, actually, the turkey baster was what my father told me, "We can just siphon most of it out and then add new", but I wasn't so sure.

On the SS board, one of the guys from here said he did a fluid flush in his driveway, but I'm not sure which to do...fully flush and replace, or just "turkey baste" and add mostly new. I was told once that flushing that would be the same kind of "no-no" as flushing a transmission (rather than just draining and refilling), disturbing too much and likely to cause problems.

3. I'm not overly concerned about the timing chain & gears either, as this isn't going to be driven "the daily grind", and we've never really run into a case of them having to be replaced on any past cars. Any obvious symptoms that they would be going, or is a tear-apart inspection the only way to know?

4. Good points about the brakes and diff--I'll keep that in mind.

ocjmakaveli
01-29-06, 03:50 AM
I strongly advise against trans fluid replacement but it's worth a shot.

It's best to replace all of the power steering fluid, use additives if you like. I used some ps fluid that had stop leak in it but nowadays they all have it i used STP i think.

Lube the doors and door locks, complete your hvac unit replacement with the roadmaster unit :suspect:.

The clamp on the oil lines works fine actually and it's been done on the impala ss forums plenty of times the crimps just get old and the rubber shrinks so it lets oil seep out.

What I did was replace the engine oil lines but i used the hose clamps on the transmission lines since I read the trans oil isn't under a lot of pressure compared to the engine oil lines. oil lines were less than $100 but don't remember exactly

Work on doing the throttle body bypass, get a good intake K&N maybe.

If your mechanically inclined it's a good time to have the front wheel bearings repacked with grease.

An alignment should be done just to make sure the tires don't wear out unevenly.

As for the cooling system you can just do a drain it's sufficient but if the coolant that comes out of the radiator has a lot of crud in it then a flush is a good thing to consider.

Definitely flush your heater core there's 2 hoses up front that go into the water pump on the left just remove these both and flush it with a garden hose both ways.This will improve your heating dramatically.

This is all I can think of at the moment I'm sure I'm missing some other minor details.

Enjoy :thumbsup:

this page will give you some ideas http://impalassforum.com/noncgi/ultimatebb.php?ubb=get_topic;f=6;t=000436#000000

JTraik
01-29-06, 04:00 AM
One other point to make with the LT1... if your going to replace your t-stat the GM 160 deg. is the best option. GL have fun!

N0DIH
01-29-06, 04:07 AM
I put the Lucas PS additive in, it stopped my box leak within the next day or so. I was going through around 1 quart ever 2 months (using the "high mileage" PS fluid), this helped, but it is VERY thick and my PS pump now squeals at cold start when below 50 degrees. I suspect that the Lucas stuff is the culprit. I might change fluid to see if it will stop, but I am afraid of the leak coming back. Not sure which is worse....


Replace the P/S fluid, that will probably take care of your noise. If not throw some additive in it. Can't remember the name of the stuff I tried before but it DID work well. The timing chain/gears are usually due around 130-140K miles so unless you're very sure the mileage is real on the car, you might want to start thinking about getting those done. Have the cooling system flushed and refilled. Not sure what you did to fix the oil cooler line leaks but I'd replace the lines. They always go bad. There's another major spot prone to leakage and that's the oil filter adapter. Other than that, have fun with it, they're great cars.

caddycruiser
01-29-06, 11:33 AM
Wow, terrific--even more good stuff to know.:yup:


I strongly advise against trans fluid replacement but it's worth a shot.
It's best to replace all of the power steering fluid, use additives if you like. I used some ps fluid that had stop leak in it but nowadays they all have it i used STP i think.
Lube the doors and door locks, complete your hvac unit replacement with the roadmaster unit :suspect:.
The clamp on the oil lines works fine actually and it's been done on the impala ss forums plenty of times the crimps just get old and the rubber shrinks so it lets oil seep out.
What I did was replace the engine oil lines but i used the hose clamps on the transmission lines since I read the trans oil isn't under a lot of pressure compared to the engine oil lines. oil lines were less than $100 but don't remember exactly
Work on doing the throttle body bypass, get a good intake K&N maybe.
If your mechanically inclined it's a good time to have the front wheel bearings repacked with grease.
An alignment should be done just to make sure the tires don't wear out unevenly.
As for the cooling system you can just do a drain it's sufficient but if the coolant that comes out of the radiator has a lot of crud in it then a flush is a good thing to consider.
Definitely flush your heater core there's 2 hoses up front that go into the water pump on the left just remove these both and flush it with a garden hose both ways.This will improve your heating dramatically.
This is all I can think of at the moment I'm sure I'm missing some other minor details.
Enjoy :thumbsup:
this page will give you some ideas http://impalassforum.com/noncgi/ultimatebb.php?ubb=get_topic;f=6;t=000436#000000

1. I semi-understand the trans fluid change not necessarily being a great thing, but when we first looked at it, the fluid had just a bit of metallic and smell to it, so I still think it would be highly advised. NOT a flush (bad, bad, bad), just a drain and refill with a new filter.

2. Still need to decide with the PS, whether to do a full flush or just get most of it out of there and refill with new. Like I had said, the first few days, I noticed a squeal as it idled after initial startup and also the slight whining, so that's what led me to this.

3. Haha...yeah, the Roadmaster HVAC unit is going in ASAP. The few days I was able to drive the car, it was in the 20's and, well, I just wanted to murder the damn Caddy unit when it came to heat...:mad2: Trust me, that's about #1 on the list now:thumbsup:

4. I'll check again on the coolant situation, along with the heater core flushing.

5. Something like a K&N is a definate, and I'm still looking at things like the TB bypass, etc. Don't want to change a whole lot, as my goal is to keep as much stock as possible, but we'll see.

ocjmakaveli
01-29-06, 03:24 PM
"Stock" is great but I always put performance and reliability above "stock".

caddycruiser
01-29-06, 03:26 PM
"Stock" is great but I always put performance and reliability above "stock".

I do too, I just meant I don't want to do anything major.

Intake, little electronic things (HVAC unit, *maybe* something stereo related, etc.), and a few other things are very likely.

I've seen a bit about it on the Impala board, but never really got in-depth yet, so what, "in short" does the TB bypass accomplish?

caddycruiser
01-29-06, 03:36 PM
On another note, the heat seems VERY toasty, but just as a general rule, what are the more specific steps to flushing the heater core? I did a search, but didn't really get the answer I was looking for.

ocjmakaveli
01-29-06, 03:53 PM
tb bypass function http://www.impalassforum.com/cgi-bin/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic&f=9&t=000197

tb bypass how-to http://home.hiwaay.net/~rayc/tbmod.htm and http://www.geocities.com/im_a_0/TB_bypass.html

for the heater core flush just remove the 2 front pass. hoses going into the waterpump and flush these out with a hose a few times

caddycruiser
01-29-06, 09:18 PM
Little update from tonight's phone call:

1. Kick panel is now fixed, and back in place where it should be.
2. Gritty, slightly bent antenna is now perfectly straight and lubed, and goes up and down as it should.
3. Coolant was "tested" (he used his little ball floater thingy) and said it registered fine, but we'll see.
4. Found the jack in the trunk, then also dug out a "hook" to hold the spare in place, since it was missing, and got that all back to normal.
5. Replaced the trunk light, as it was burnt out.

All I can say is WOW...so nice to have such a crafty mechanic who works for free at home:thumbsup: