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I bought a 1996 STS which is my wifes car. Off white with neutral interior. She & I both love this car ...she has her 96, I have a 1999 Black STS with Oatmeal interior with sun roof, extra wood package...a drop dead beautiful car. My wife's 1996 has the dreaded oil consumption problem..using about 2 qts at 1800 miles. Recently, the coolant level indication light came on and sure enough it was very low. Put in antifreeze and OK..next the oil light came on...2 qts low at 1,000 miles. My mechanic says that the old model STS's (he worked at a local Bham Caddy dealer and for a local Mercedes dealer and now on his own) had two problems, oil use and the aluminum engines actually would have bolts stripped by the large torque. Anyway, to fix the problem adequately he said we need to put in lower block seals, redrill bolt holes(helical glue?) and put new rings in. (I am an insurance agent and not mechanically inclined so I think I have missed some things) This my friend is a very expensive proposition for a car with 114,000 miles. Blue book is 4200, repair would probably be that much. I am thinking of giving my wife the 99 STS and buying a used 2002-03 STS but also must consider a Lexus LS430 and Lexus GS430. I have looked at the Mercedes CLK500 Coupe and boy is it fast but I fear expensive parts. Both the Lexus and Mercedes are in the mid to high 30's for a 2003 model. I have had excellent luck with my 1999.
Would appreciate your input. Thanks again for this forum. It has been helpful.

RS
 

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I'm biased but i'd stay with Cadillac. In the early 90's my dad had a Lexus company car. It had horrible leg room in the back (even for me as a kid!) and even now he has never had good things to say about that car. I'm sure they've come a long way since then. at least I hope so.
 

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I had the lower seal fixed when I put a new tranny in my 96 STS. I love the way the car drives so i invested the money to keep her going. I drive her hard, but she is running like a champ.
 

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You need to look into your problems further before you do anything rash. Oil consumption is normal. Have you been doing your WOT therapy? Doing so every once in a while will free up your rings and help the consumption issue a little. Also check your pcv valve. It has been posted before that if this very inexpensive item isn't working properly, it will increase oil consumption.

Two quarts low at 1000 miles? Are you sure that 7.5 quarts were added at the last oil change?

You have added some coolant. When was the last time you had to do that before this time? Have you checked completely for leaks? There is a known problem of head bolts stripping threads. However, it isn't happening to every car out there.

Shed some more light on what you have done as far as maintenance.
 

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rontide said:
I bought a 1996 STS which is my wifes car. Off white with neutral interior. She & I both love this car ...she has her 96, I have a 1999 Black STS with Oatmeal interior with sun roof, extra wood package...a drop dead beautiful car. My wife's 1996 has the dreaded oil consumption problem..using about 2 qts at 1800 miles. Recently, the coolant level indication light came on and sure enough it was very low. Put in antifreeze and OK..next the oil light came on...2 qts low at 1,000 miles. My mechanic says that the old model STS's (he worked at a local Bham Caddy dealer and for a local Mercedes dealer and now on his own) had two problems, oil use and the aluminum engines actually would have bolts stripped by the large torque. Anyway, to fix the problem adequately he said we need to put in lower block seals, redrill bolt holes(helical glue?) and put new rings in. (I am an insurance agent and not mechanically inclined so I think I have missed some things) RS
Sounds like you need to take her out on the highway and kick it in the tai la few times at Wide Open Throttle. This should help seat your rings, and as long as you continue to do the exercise 2-4 times per month, you should see dramatically less oil consumption. As stated above, the low oil is really not reason for a large concern, very rectifiable. I had to pay for an oil change last time around because I wasn't local, and sure enough, they only used 5 quarts - need to make sure the jiffy lube folks realize the Northstar needs 7.5 quarts of lube.

I'd keep an eye on the low coolant. Have you done a Dexcool drain/refill with GM supplement tabs at 5 yrs/100K? If not - get on that. You could possibly have a minor gasket leak at your water pump causing the slow drain of coolant. The tablets should remedy that.

I wouldn't worry about your head bolts being stripped unless the engine has had a head gasket replacement.

Get her out on the road (and your '99 too) and do some WOT therapy - the car will appreciate it, and you can save $30K on a new ride.
 
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