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Sorry for how long this is, but hopefully you will understand my frustration.
Hi, I'm new to the world of Cadillac and am having a few issues with my 1st one.
I just bought mine from my brother, I knew it had problems when I agreed to buy it from him. One day while me and his wife were driving around, the car was running fine. I stoped at a red light, things seemed fine, but when I took off and looked in the rear view mirror I saw a thick cloud of white smoke. I imediately pulled the car over and inspected it to see what could have possibly happened. When I poped the hood the engine bay was covered in oil. Uppon further inspection I noticed the pully that drives the water pump laying to the side with the piece of the cam that drives it still inside. We had the car towed home and I started the job of replacing the cam. Since the main body of the cam was still intact I knew there would be no serious timing issues. Well, while the top of the engine was torn down my brother offered me the Eldorado for a price I couldn't resist. When I finnished the cam replacement I thought I was home free, not the case. After the cam swap I took her for a test drive and she drove great. The next day I went to take her for a little longer drive and she started to overheat, another trip on the tow truck. When I got her home I noticed water leaking around the radiator. So I removed it and found 3 cracks in the end caps. Then to top things off while removing the radiator I thought I would change the thermostat to be on the safe side and found one bolt to the housing would spin but not loosen. I'm about ready to give up and sell her for parts. I'm just wondering if I'm alone in having so much trouble out of a single Eldorado or if any of these are common problems? Any help or even encouragement while I'm still trying would be appreciated. Sadly Cadillac isn't making that great of an impression with me. MAybe from what I've seen on here things will be better when I finally get to enjoy mine. If I get to.
 

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Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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wewsel said:
Sorry for how long this is, but hopefully you will understand my frustration.
Hi, I'm new to the world of Cadillac and am having a few issues with my 1st one.
I just bought mine from my brother, I knew it had problems when I agreed to buy it from him. One day while me and his wife were driving around, the car was running fine. I stoped at a red light, things seemed fine, but when I took off and looked in the rear view mirror I saw a thick cloud of white smoke. I imediately pulled the car over and inspected it to see what could have possibly happened. When I poped the hood the engine bay was covered in oil. Uppon further inspection I noticed the pully that drives the water pump laying to the side with the piece of the cam that drives it still inside. We had the car towed home and I started the job of replacing the cam. Since the main body of the cam was still intact I knew there would be no serious timing issues. Well, while the top of the engine was torn down my brother offered me the Eldorado for a price I couldn't resist. When I finnished the cam replacement I thought I was home free, not the case. After the cam swap I took her for a test drive and she drove great. The next day I went to take her for a little longer drive and she started to overheat, another trip on the tow truck. When I got her home I noticed water leaking around the radiator. So I removed it and found 3 cracks in the end caps. Then to top things off while removing the radiator I thought I would change the thermostat to be on the safe side and found one bolt to the housing would spin but not loosen. I'm about ready to give up and sell her for parts. I'm just wondering if I'm alone in having so much trouble out of a single Eldorado or if any of these are common problems? Any help or even encouragement while I'm still trying would be appreciated. Sadly Cadillac isn't making that great of an impression with me. MAybe from what I've seen on here things will be better when I finally get to enjoy mine. If I get to.
As far as the problems you're having, it sounds like somebody %&#@ed up a previous repair job or two. The cam doesn't just break for no reason. It would take a pretty sizable amount of force to snap off the end like that. What caused the cam to break?

As far as the radiator cracks, it sounds like maybe the thing was overheated previously or the radiator was somehow abused during a "repair" job. My guess is that it overheated at some point and somebody changed the thermostat to prevent the problem. In doing so, they overtightened the bolts for the thermostat and stripped one of them.

It's not the car you should be losing confidence in. It's whatever bonehead did the previous work on it. Before you get too involved in fixing all those issues, I would do a cylinder pressurization test if I was you, to test the head gaskets. If it's overheated and had several crappy repair jobs to the cooling system, the head gaskets have been abused a bit. Considering all this stuff, the cooling system probably wasn't ever maintained properly in the first place, and that's another mark against the head gaskets.

Gotta take care of 'em, wewsel, that goes for any car. If I was you, I'd go over that thing with a fine-toothed comb and make sure everything is current on maintenance. If your cylinder pressurization test comes up bad, though, it's time to either start looking for a place that can timesert the block and replace the head gaskets or install a new engine.
 

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White Diamond '03 DHS (with DTS floor shift)
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As far as the spinning bolt on the thermostat housing goes, that should be an easy fix. A helicoil should work well in that application to reair the threads.
 
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