Found my ETC - OBSERVATIONS and Question
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  • 2 Post By Caddydrummer67
Cadillac Seville / Cadillac Eldorado Forum Discussion, Found my ETC - OBSERVATIONS and Question in Past Cadillac Vehicle Discussion; Well, I snagged an ETC. Black on Black 2001. 49,000 miles. Here are some observations from my experience in shopping ...
  1. #1
    Caddydrummer67's Avatar
    Caddydrummer67 is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
    Automobile(s): '01 ETC 49,000 miles 2002 F55 STS 63,000 miles
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    Found my ETC - OBSERVATIONS and Question

    Well, I snagged an ETC. Black on Black 2001. 49,000 miles.
    Here are some observations from my experience in shopping for one.


    1. You have to act quick on these. Clean ones go fast. You really don't have time to research the particular car to the nth degree and get every last detail from the seller because in the meantime, some other buyer will show up with his check book open. Particularly if you are searching on the internet and buying long distance.

    2. You'll never find a perfect one. I imagine if there was one out there, It would cost a fortune. There's always some compromise which is true with the purchase of any used car. I wanted Black with Shale, sunroof, under 50,000 miles. I settled for Black on Black. Mine is a one owner, very clean, interior immaculate. I attached one pic. I will do the obligatory fluid changes, brakes, etc. The driver's door panel is loose and needsto be re-attached. Other than that I'm pretty happy with it. Drove home 1,000 miles with no problems. A/C works great. No apparent suspension issues. No codes. Engine runs very strong...sounds perfect.

    I do have a question though. It came from a part of the country where they salt the roads and it does have some rust on the undercarriage. How much of a concern is this and how can I tell if there are any structural issues. How bad does it have to be before it is a safety issue? I'm thinking I will take it to the local dealer and have them look at it.
    Of coure, they'll probably tell me it needs $2,000 worth of new parts.
    Now that the car is in a very dry part of the country, will the car continue to rust just at a slower rate?
    Maybe I'm just freaking out over nothing. The thing drives perfectly. Aren't the suspension components aluminum?

    Could the rust really be that bad in 13 years and 49,000 miles?
    It seems bad to me, but I'm used to cars that have been in the SW, California, and very dry places like WY and SD, so I haven't seen much rust.

    I'll see if I can post some pictures of the rust.
    Attached Images
    amunderdog and Cadillac R like this.

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  3. #2
    Cadillac R's Avatar
    Cadillac R is offline Cadillac Owners Member
    Automobile(s): 1996 Cadillac Eldorado ETC, 2001 Cadillac Deville
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    Re: Found my ETC - OBSERVATIONS and Question

    Nice! I have owned two of these, a crimson red 96 and a diamond white 96. If it's just rust on the exhaust and suspension components it's not a big deal but if you see rust on the floor pans underneath that could be a problem. I don't think light surface rust is anything to be concerned about.

  4. #3
    Ranger's Avatar
    Ranger is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: Found my ETC - OBSERVATIONS and Question

    Quote Originally Posted by Caddydrummer67 View Post
    It came from a part of the country where they salt the roads and it does have some rust on the undercarriage. How much of a concern is this
    With only 49K, not much.

    how can I tell if there are any structural issues.
    Unlikely, but you;ll have to get it on a hoist to inspect it.

    How bad does it have to be before it is a safety issue?
    Very bad. Much, much worse than you could have.

    Aren't the suspension components aluminum?
    Yes

    Could the rust really be that bad in 13 years and 49,000 miles?
    It's possible, but only a visual will tell. I wouldn't be too concerned though.

    If you find rust that you are concerned about, there are many rust stop products that you can paint it with that will stop or slow down the process.

  5. #4
    drewsdeville is offline Cadillac Owners Master
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    Re: Found my ETC - OBSERVATIONS and Question

    In the scope of this topic, mileage determines little - but age can. Lots of rotten garage queens out there.

  6. #5
    basscatt's Avatar
    basscatt is offline Cadillac Owners 10000+ Posts
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    Re: Found my ETC - OBSERVATIONS and Question

    double check all the steel brake lines and flex hoses -

  7. #6
    stoveguyy is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    Remove plastic shield covering brake lines under drivers feet area. Check for trapped dirt and rusted lines there.

  8. #7
    Caddydrummer67's Avatar
    Caddydrummer67 is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: Found my ETC - OBSERVATIONS and Question

    OK, here are some pics. I need everyone's opinion. How bad is it? and if it's bad, what are the options to deal with it?
    Is it likely to be unsafe? Is it likely to be nearly impossible to adjust the alignment or change out the brakes?

    Basically, the worst seems to be the rear sub-frame, particularly the suspension mounting points. The front lower control arms.
    The brake caliper hardware looks bad as well. The rear shocks are pretty well rusted but still work fine. They hold air and ride height is correct.
    There are a few spots on a couple of the brake lines. Rear anti-sway/stabilizer bar is rusted pretty bad.

    What are the best options to slow down the rust? Can it be sandblasted? I assume everything would have to be taken apart. Might as well replace
    stuff in that case.

    Exhaust is fine, floor panels look ok. Anything that's aluminum is fine, of course. Engine compartment is spotless.
    Mechanically, there is nothing wrong.
    Attached Images

  9. #8
    Caddydrummer67's Avatar
    Caddydrummer67 is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: Found my ETC - OBSERVATIONS and Question

    I've got more, but it won't let me post em. Over the total limit, I think.

  10. #9
    amunderdog is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    Re: Found my ETC - OBSERVATIONS and Question

    Look over the fuel and brake lines carefully.
    For the other stuff maybe study up on rust converters and encapsulators.
    http://search.eastwood.com/search?w=rust
    http://www.therustdoctor.com/how-to/index.html

  11. #10
    basscatt's Avatar
    basscatt is offline Cadillac Owners 10000+ Posts
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    Re: Found my ETC - OBSERVATIONS and Question

    Quote Originally Posted by Caddydrummer67 View Post
    OK, here are some pics. I need everyone's opinion. How bad is it? and if it's bad, what are the options to deal with it?
    Is it likely to be unsafe? Is it likely to be nearly impossible to adjust the alignment or change out the brakes?

    Basically, the worst seems to be the rear sub-frame, particularly the suspension mounting points. The front lower control arms.
    The brake caliper hardware looks bad as well. The rear shocks are pretty well rusted but still work fine. They hold air and ride height is correct.
    There are a few spots on a couple of the brake lines. Rear anti-sway/stabilizer bar is rusted pretty bad.

    What are the best options to slow down the rust? Can it be sandblasted? I assume everything would have to be taken apart. Might as well replace
    stuff in that case.

    Exhaust is fine, floor panels look ok. Anything that's aluminum is fine, of course. Engine compartment is spotless.
    Mechanically, there is nothing wrong.
    ========================
    WOW -
    the bottom sure doesn't match the top -

    all your questions/concerns are valid ones -
    but NO ONE can ACCURATELY answer them from a couple pics -

    HOPEFULLY it LOOKS worse than it really IS -

    from a SAFETY point of view -
    I wouldn't be too concerned with surface rust on the solid metal bars -
    I WOULD carefully inspect ALL of the much thinner stamped steel pieces -
    but is sure does look ugly -
    ---------------

    if this was MY car -
    my suggestion would be -

    IF this is a car you are planning on keeping for a long time -
    you have a LOT of work ahead - to clean it all up -

    the PROPER approach would be to - disassemble -
    sandblast - paint/powder-coat - or replace parts - then re-assemble -
    this will take forever - and cost a fortune - besides NOT being "fun" -

    the easiest solution might be to buy an entire rear suspension assembly -
    from a rust-free zone - and swap the entire unit -

    west coast - desert areas - or southern states would be best -
    many junk yards are "linked" and will ship to each other -
    start your search here - http://car-part.com/ -
    or here - http://lkqcorp.com/

    --------------------

    I just bought an 02 Deville DHS with 125K miles on it -
    FORTUNATELY it was a "southern" car - Missouri/Arkansas -
    and the underside doesn't even look very dirty - much less rusty -

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