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I am looking to buy a 1988 deville. it has 38.000 miles on it. I have no way of knowing what was ever done if anything or how long car sat. Will this car be ok if i get it and dump the coolant? what is should I be looking for when I inspect it?
 

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1990 DeVille
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Two months ago I bought a 1990 DeVille with 21k on it. Here's what I did:

The Vogue tires were okay for tread, but heavily cracked, so I replaced them.
Brake system flush.
One front strut was weak, so I replaced both.
Transmission drain/refill (not flush), gasket and filter.
Installed a Prestone kit and flushed the cooling system.
Sucked out the PS fluid and replaced, several times (not really a flush).
Oil and filter change.
New plug wires.

Inspect belts, hoses and vacuum lines very carefully. I disconnected and reconnected every electrical connector I could find on the car - if you're a nut like me you will use DeOxit on the connector metal. Make sure all rubber seals (around doors, engine compartment, trunk) are properly adhered. I re-torqued everything I could reach easily, under the car and in the engine compartment. Check the exhaust system rubber hangers, engine and trans mounts, for separation.

I then eliminated every rattle and squeak - the car is now totally silent over bumps, etc.

Go to eBay and buy the correct shop manual - it's a huge book in a red cover. I paid $25 or so, including shipping.

If you have any questions, pm me and I'll try to answer.
 

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2010 DTS
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I am looking to buy a 1988 deville. it has 38.000 miles on it. I have no way of knowing what was ever done if anything or how long car sat. Will this car be ok if i get it and dump the coolant? what is should I be looking for when I inspect it?
Russian Roulette.
 

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1990 350 Brougham (The cruiser), 1988 Mark VII LSC (The DD)
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ide stay away from the 4.1s
1988 started the use of the 4.5, so the engine will be fine.

What are they asking for it? If it is a good price I would say go for it. I bought my '88 the same way, it sat for a long time before I got it. It now has 68k miles but is out of commission again because there is a bad bearing in the trans again. The engines are pretty strong and will last quite a while. The first thing I would definitely do is change the coolant though.
 

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1926 Model T street rod, 2000 Jaguar XJ8, 1999 Corvette.
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Do exactly what NOTAGURU said. Low mileage old cars are a potential headache if not serviced completely. I would also check the rear drum brake wheel cylinders for fluid seepage now and a month after driving. Make sure you use the GM sealant pellets as per decal under hood once the coolant is replaced. I also use DELLO engine oil labeled for use in a diesel. These engine required the zinc additive in the oil for cam protection. Diesel oil usually has this additive where as new oils dont.
 

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2010 DTS
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Do exactly what NOTAGURU said. Low mileage old cars are a potential headache if not serviced completely. I would also check the rear drum brake wheel cylinders for fluid seepage now and a month after driving. Make sure you use the GM sealant pellets as per decal under hood once the coolant is replaced. I also use DELLO engine oil labeled for use in a diesel. These engine required the zinc additive in the oil for cam protection. Diesel oil usually has this additive where as new oils dont.
They still have it (ZDDP), just not as much.
 
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