Last post on Sep 19, 2013 at 3:05 AM
You are in the Chevy Express & GMC Savana
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Chevrolet Express, GMC Savana, Chevrolet Express Cargo, Chevrolet Sportvan, Chevrolet Chevy Van, Chevrolet Chevy Van Classic, Van
#143 of 655 Express rates poorly
Feb 07, 2001 (1:09 pm)
I purchased a 1998 Chevy Express Van with 70k miles through a bank that leased the vehicle.
After one month, the first problem became later identified on GM's technical bulletin as a solenoid fault within the transmission. The local Chevy dealer wanted to replace the entire transmission for $1700. Badger Transmission fixed the problem with a torgue converter for $650.
Stalling, hesitation and hard starting seem to be quite common with this van. Indeed, the Chevy dealership wanted to rewire the entire vehicle without knowing the outcome.
I had an independent repair shop examine it. After working on it for a week, they installed a mass air flow sensor for a unit cost of $340 plus labor. That seemed to work for about a month, but the problem returned.
I took it back to the same shop and they later discovered that the computer was corroded. Express owners, please note that the computer is located in the worst possible place for exposure ~ inside the front left fender, underneath the water bottle. The aluminum casing got so hot from electrical shortages due to water/winter salt, it actually fused the copper pins where the wires connect. A new ECU costs about $700. I got a remanufactured one for about $300.
The computer still has to be re programmed at a Chevy dealership. While it was there, the service manager tried to convince the auto mechanic that the main problem was due to a gasoline leak that was following the wires to the computer and that the only way to fix it was to replace the wiring harness. My mechanic knew better. (He's my brother).
I got the van for my dogs. It truly is for the dogs.
#144 of 655 rsmmac -GMC/Chevy 3500 with 8.1 engine
Feb 15, 2001 (9:53 am)
How is your gas mileage with the 8.1/496ci engine? Do you have 3.73 or 4.10?
#145 of 655 Express Van Mirrors
Feb 20, 2001 (12:08 am)
I have a 98 Express van and have had the outside rear view mirrors replaced 3 times. Has anyone else had the same problem? The dealer ruined 2 sets of door pads during re-installation, and want to know if a definite fix to the problem before I have them replaced again.
Feb 20, 2001 (11:45 am)
I forgot to mention what the defect in these mirrors was. When driving they wobble/shake to the point that they are useless. The glass just shakes, the body of the mirror is stable. When driving at night the lights from behind me tend to flash me and catch my eye in the most annoying way. Right after they get replaced it gets better, but as time goes on it worsens.
#147 of 655 who has origenal parts from their gmc full size passeger van
Feb 27, 2001 (9:07 am)
I am looking for the tracks for the rear seat on a 2500 or 3500. I am trying to put the 4 seater to the back of my 1500 so I need the tracks that bolt on the floor. so if anyone has it please sent me an e-mail to chowinihotmail.com. I would like to get it off you.
#148 of 655 Wobbly mirrors associated with bug deflectors--uncovered here at Edmunds!
Feb 27, 2001 (5:47 pm)
jgmilberg has had problems with vibrating side-view mirrors. Another Express/Savana driver in this forum had their mirrors replaced many times. The problem went away after the bug deflector was removed. Seems like the bug deflector redirected the airflow to the mirror or created turbulence causing the mirrors to vibrate. The turbulence doesn't affect a new mirror until after a while when it progressively gets worked more and more loose. jgmilberg do you have a bug deflector?
#149 of 655 RE: #142 GMC/Chevy 3500 with 8.1 engine
Feb 27, 2001 (9:10 pm)
Dear Mr. Long:
I got the 3.73 and I get just about 11 mpg (10.88 to date at 4050 miles) with a rather heavy foot. My old 1500 conversion never got more than 13.5 (it had a 350 and the 3.73), so I am not shocked, although 11 mpg is abysmal when compared to smaller vehicles. Depends on what you want. I've already had 2 "road / day trips" (300+ miles) with 9 other family members (my wife and our 3 kids, brother & sister in law & their baby, grandma and grandpa) & all our stuff. We all have great fun together, so being together for the trips is nicer than taking 2-3 cars.
And I can't deny it - I like to drive, I always liked full-size vans, and I love the big V-8 torque and horsepower.
#150 of 655 vandalybay1-mirrors
Mar 02, 2001 (10:34 pm)
I do have a bug gaurd, but had it put on after I had already had 2 sets of mirrors replaced. It was installed after only 14K miles, so I am unhappy with the design and think if a little thing like a bug gaurd would effect the mirrors in such a dramatic way they would figure out what was going bad and beefed it up. In all reality how many van conversion companies install them before it even hits the dealer lot.
#151 of 655 Savanna 3500 Explorer Conversion
Mar 05, 2001 (2:54 pm)
I have just ordered a Savanna 3500 with a full high-top Explorer conversion and the new 8.0 liter engine. I am told the van won't be delivered to the dealer until the end of April. While I'm waiting, I'm wondering if anyone else has taken delivery of such a van. The primary reason I ordered it was to tow a 7600 pound trailer over long distances. The Express 1500 we have now, with the Vortex 5.7 and 3:73 rear end is just not up to the job.
I ordered the 3500 with a 3:73 locking rear miff. My wife drives the van around town everyday with kids etc. I'm worried that the 3500 will be too tall, too truck like and a beast to drive. Since the dealer can't actually show me one, I'm sort of left in the dark while I wait for this thing to arrive. Any experiences anyone? And if you do have one with the high-top.. how tall is it? The dealer is just not sure.
Mar 06, 2001 (1:28 am)
Here is the site with all the specs on the stock van, www.gmc.com go to savana, then select specs. It is only 2.5"-3" taller that the 1/2 ton. The 3/4 to will do the job but the power of the 8.1 L engine is unmatched, and unfortunatly only available in the 1 ton model. By changing to a 4:10 gear in the rear of the 3/4 ton might make a difference, but no where near the difference of the 8.1L. The 3500 is a really stiff ride in the passenger van version, so I would imagine it would be the same in the conversion. The total height will be determined by your "bubble" top. If your current van has one on it add about 2.5" - 3" to the height. An easy way to do this is to drive it up onto 2x6's stacked 2 high laying flat on the ground, this should give you a really good idea how hard/easy getting in and out will be. Check out the SUV topic under trucks and Yukon XL for more feedback on the 8.1L performance. Find out from your dealer if the Allison 5 speed auto is available, if so for the sake of your wallet get it, it will pay for itself in fuel costs. Adds about 3-4 MPG over the 4 spd auto. Have you considered a Yukon XL? Can get a good ride in the 3/4 ton with the 8.1L and autoride. Just an idea.