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Thread: 94 Buick RoadMaster Estate Wagon LT 1 issues

  1. #31
    Electronic Ignition!
    Join Date
    Jun 2019
    Vilefly, I’ll try and follow your suggestions.

    Since I got the car I have used it to go to work. It’s about 45 miles depending on route each way. 95% highway cruising. Traffic often goes 75-80 for about 20 miles. Then about 55-60 the rest of the way. There are a couple miles at the start and end of city driving so. There is a long grade about 6-7 miles. I don’t know the elevation but traffic still goes 75+ up it. The car could do this easy and I was a left lane cruiser everyday. So it got lots of fast lane use for the first 6k miles. Then the issues started. It never over heated the gage stayed dead center, it never burn or lost oil, never used coolant. Basically a perfect highway cruiser. I was very happy with it.
    Then it developed a miss, slight but it caused a lack of power and the converter and trans acted up. Dropping out of lock up then out of OD. I thought the trans was the issue. I went to 5 well known shops and all wanted expensive trans repairs. However I was suspicious since I was driving the car everyday and had begun knowing it. So I asked if this would definitely fix the issue. They all said the trans was the issue but said the motor was fine. I wasn’t buying this besides there was no guarantee they problem would be fixed.

    So I looked for good shops with OBD 1 scanners. Few had them. Some wanted to charge me to upgrade their stuff. Forget it. I finally found the shop I’m at. He also does trans. He had it for a day and really flogged it. He said the trans was perfect but there were issues with the motor.
    Long story short, step by step issues were addressed before a really complete scan of the motor operating was done. The Opti Spark was full of oil and caused ignition issues. Bad oil seal. It was replaced with new old stock unit. Along with wires and plugs.
    And so on, everything was done with discussion of why this or that needed fixing. Bottom line is today there is nothing showing on his scans and mine using EEHACK except for low manifold vac.

    There is no real anti freeze smell, no oil smoke, just a random puttering in the right exhaust. Scans show the front cyl and the back two on the right bank dead rich. BLM maxed out. The plugs on the right bank are all fluffy black but not packed. We have replaced them three times already.

    So we spent an hour discussing where to go. I have to give him credit for being patient with me and not over charging me. I know he needs to make a living so his time is of value. I have no choice but have someone do my work as I simply do not have a place to work on cars.

    I’m at a loss now so depending on others who really know this system. I’m trying to learn too. In some cases tests simply need to not be done and just fix a suspected problem. Certainly not the best way but economics enter too. I hate this but it’s less Expensive to just do it and look at the cause afterward. Certainly a poor way of doing things.

    If you scan this thing with a parts store scanner it will show nothing wrong. It takes something that scans deeper so enter the SnapOn or Matco or EEHACK. And now we see an issue. Every attempt has failed to fix this. Certainly some were unnecessary. I know this and have to accept this.

    We now are at perhaps what should have been done earlier position. Were it a carb the manifold gaskets would have been replaced early on....I think. I would have done this myself based on carb experience.

    So maybe by late tomorrow I’ll know what happens. Even this I still have misgivings. I can’t imagine real hard parts failing this way. The switching side for side of the problem keeps coming up. But now with the intake issue “fixed” it may point some other direction.

    I don’t like making long post but I like to present the issue as complete as possible.

    I did try to post my scans but I simply can’t from my iPad and down here on the boat our WIFI is very unstable. I’ll take my laptop up to my sons this weekend and see if I can work something out.

    I know y’all are trying to help out so thanks again. I’m listening ...reading.


    Last edited by Bentwings; 1 Week Ago at 10:07 AM.

  2. #32
    Fuel Injected! vilefly's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2017
    I would like to state for the record that I said test the manifold, and not replace anything yet. The small block chevy, prior to the CPI vortec motors, seldom had intake manifold gasket failures when the OEM gaskets were used. When they eliminated the center bolts for the manifold, things began to fail. There is a slight possibility that the gasket rotted out from underneath the metal edges of the ports, but it doesn't happen often. Just make sure the rest of the manifold ports and gaskets are sealing, too.

    Hopefully, there is not a constant hissing sound from the brake booster when you hold down the brake. A leaking brake booster can skew things, too.

  3. #33
    Electronic Ignition!
    Join Date
    Jun 2019
    I have not checked the brake booster but I’ll do that. The brakes are very good on this big car. Very light pedal.
    The motor doesn’t make much noise even with the hood open. I have heard no “hissy” sounds at all. I’ll have to ask as I don’t remember. Early on the EGR was looked at and serviced if not replaced. There was a problem with the vacuum line or something. I’ll ask him.

    I missed calling him Fri so I called done, finish tomorrow. He is really busy I know that so I’m trying to be patient. The weather is turning early I think this year. Miserably cold and driving cold rain and wind today. Got soaked then had to go back out and snap down the rear canvas on the boat.

    I still have an uneasy feeling thatbthis gasket job isn’t going to fix it. I’ll be totally lost. I asked him to take a look at the valve action, possibly a flat cam. Also look down the ports of use the bore scope at the intake valves and see if they may be really carboned up. I’ve seen some really bad ones that only caused a little loss of power.

    So more later.


  4. #34
    Electronic Ignition!
    Join Date
    Jun 2019
    Long story short I wasn’t able to contact him until this morning.
    The intake is still on and he hasn’t don’t anything productive. I should be fuming by now maybe a melt down is in order. However I need this car, shortly winter is coming and I don’t want the el Camino in the salt bath winter, besides its nearly as bad as my truck for traction.

    So he wants to do more external stuff. What the H ..... more can be done? I’m going to go out there shortly it’s a long drive but I can go to the shop where I work just down the road and make Something for my boat I need the time on the boat more than chasing this car.

    I’m going to ask to remove the valve covers and check over the valve train as close as possible. Valve seals are not real easy to see but possibly they can be seen better with his fancy bore scope. If a doc. can see inside my a.... surely a snap on scope can get close to the valve springs and seals. Next watch and observe the valve action. Flat cam? Don’t think so but failed lifters maybe. The ‘scope may be able to be poked in the casting openings to look over the top of the lifters.
    Next I was out with my dog and thought maybe by pulling the injectors it would be possible to look down this hole right at the valve. They maybe massively carboned up. It only had 100k miles when I got it so in 25 years so that’s only 4 k a year.
    I want to revisit the EGR from the note above. I don’t think the knock sensors have been looked at or were ok according to the scans. Also I want to do the BLM reset by disconnecting the battery. There was another test that was quicker. I’ll request we try that too.

    Question here, with EEHACK, the BLM can’t be reset. So by disconnecting the battery does this enable a reset or is it automatically reset? Do I need to disconnect my OBD 1 cord during this process?

    I also want to do another scan with EEHACK on my lap top. Speaking of which I need to be able to send these by email. I’ll swing by the Apple Store and see why I can’t do this.

    Digressing a moment, I was in the hospital ICU after a fall in the snow. I had blood on the brain. It was a very hard fall, face plant. The doc said I know what happened but there should not have been a couple symptoms I noted during the operation. I’m going to do an angiogram to look further. Normally you would be clear to recover but I don’t like these things and I need to do more work. Then asked for the usual signature. He went ahead then showed me what he found and repaired. It was so small he needed a microscope on the probe to see it. But this is what is lacking in auto repair shops today.

    That’s not many trips to the grocery store and it was never driven in the winter. So these are tests that I dreamed up in the last hour and a half with my dog.

    Now it’s not a lot of RR but a lot of screwing around testing “is it this or that” then find the intake is still questionable. Taking the intake off is part of a valve job so it's already partway there, if looking in the ports and a problem is seen you can continue with productive work. You should be able to identify leaking gaskets external or internal probably both. I’d say do this. Then if it doesn’t fix it then were I the mech I’d have to tell the customer that “I give up, we have done everything, tried not to throw parts or work at it, but the problem persists. I simply do not have the extra knowledge to fix this, let me help you find someone else.” I would respect this instead of ongoing, “ didn’t get to it today, have it done tomorrow, multiple times”.

    I m searching the local area for another shop too. Frankly most are rip off places, there are few really honest places. Most will not listen to what has been done nor thoroughly scan and check things. I found this with the trans. shops I originally visited. I also asked my streetrod friends where they go and why. Many no longer do a lot of work on their cars as their health simply does not permit this labor.

    I want to revisit about everything you guys have noted above. Either myself or with external help.

    I just looked at a new Edelbrock ProFlo 4. It’s been a very good system with good tech support. It would be a stretch to install this, just dreaming.

    Thanks everyone for the help. I hope this thing gets fixed soon.


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