Last post on Mar 01, 2013 at 9:56 PM
You are in the Chevrolet (Geo) Prizm
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Chevrolet Prizm, Geo Prizm, Sedan
#1408 of 1443 Vibrations in prizm
Apr 11, 2011 (9:51 am)
I have a 1995 Geo Prizm. It has run 99K miles. The car is vibrating now and different mechanics suspect different problems about the car. I got one mechanic who asked me to replace the following parts
1. Rack and pinion.
3. Lower Control Arms.
The estimated cost was around 1000 bucks. is it worth getting it fixed with a uncertified mechanic for 1000 bucks, from a dealer for 2300 bucks or is it worth selling it off and buying a new one?
#1409 of 1443 vibrations inprizm
Apr 11, 2011 (10:30 am)
I have had three of these things and never replaced a rack and pinion or lower contol arms. Unless the rack is leaking or the control arms show serious visible wear I cant believe those are your the problem (My last one had 250,000 hard miles before it retired & my current one has 160,000 hard miles on it). The fact that his guess is that "wild" tells me he does'nt know what is is and may be wasting your money by trying a shotgun approach to fixing it.
most likely (depending on when the vibration occurs) it could be struts, or a bad cv joint (drive axle) or potentially a wheel bearing (but unlikely). For that matter it could simply be bad or out of balance tires (or if you live where it is muddy or snowy mud or snow can pack up on the inside of the wheel and throw the balance off making it vibrate), If it had more miles on it and the vibration only occurred at really high speeds it could be transmission output shaft bearings (but this is probably unlikely).
If you hear a kind of slight clunky noise or feel more viration when turning the wheel it might be a cv joint.Take a look at your front tires for uneven wear patterns. this can indicate a bad strut. If you feel the bumps a little harder than you think you should, or hear clunk when you hit potholes then most likely Struts. (struts will also sometiems leak oil when they are bad) There are a lot of little things as well that can cause vibrations.
Find someone who has a good idea of how to troubleshoot your problem.
I definitely wouldn't spend $1k on speculations. These are pretty good cars. take the time to figure it out. Mechanically this car is an exact twin of a toyota corrola (except for body and trim)and when taken care of can easily exceed 200,000 miles.
I hope this helps.
#1410 of 1443 Re: Vibrations in prizm [ucfknight1]
Apr 11, 2011 (4:03 pm)
Vibration is felt exactly when? While driving slow? Driving fast? At idle?
It might be engine mount/s if you see the engine shaking when it is running.
But like the previous message said, these cars run forever if you do the basic maintenance. When something breaks it is usually easy/cheap to fix.Things do not break easily.
#1411 of 1443 A/T Drain Plug
Apr 11, 2011 (4:06 pm)
Now my question:
What is the size of automatic transmission drain plug? What is the tool to use for drain&refill service? An allen wrench? Sockets?
Car is 1994 Geo Prizm with 4 speed auto. (158K miles).
#1412 of 1443 Re: Vibrations in prizm [ucfknight1]
Apr 12, 2011 (6:21 am)
It almost sounds like you took it to a Tires Plus store - as they always manage to "find" problems with every car that comes in!
I have a 1999 Prism with over 275,000 miles on it, and have never had to replace any of what you've been told.
I'd take it to a reputable mechanic (if any still exist today) to get it checked out.
Either way, I would not spend $2300 to get it fixed... I'd use that money to find a newer used car.
#1413 of 1443 Re: Vibrations in prizm [ucfknight1]
Apr 12, 2011 (6:32 am)
If you can feel it in the steering wheel at high speed (55+ mph), chances are it is a badly worn tire or a bent wheel. Start with the cheap and easy fixes first.
#1414 of 1443 Re: Vibrations in prizm [ruddneck]
Apr 12, 2011 (8:37 am)
Also could be a wheel bearing.
May 15, 2011 (4:32 pm)
I have a 94 prizm with the 1.6. While driving it will just shutdown, starts right back up, and will be fine. Just never know when it will do it. It has a complete tuneup, new fuel filter and fuel pump. Check engine light has not come on. Any suggestions? Thank you
#1416 of 1443 Re: stalling out [hubbsy176]
May 16, 2011 (10:01 am)
It happened to my 1994 Prizm too.
Mine was related to corroded battery poles. Just get a battery post cleaner (wire brush), clean the rust, then add a a few drops of hot watyer+baking soda mix over the rusty part, clean the residue and then tighten the battery cables. I hope it solves your problem too.
May 16, 2011 (1:54 pm)
Thanks I will try that.