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Chevrolet Venture, Pontiac Montana, Oldsmobile Silhouette, Van
#960 of 1617 Piston slapping Montana
Nov 01, 2004 (1:52 pm)
Bought a 2000 montana earlier this year despite a cold start noise. I was focused on DGC but decided on the Montana because it was thousands less than anything else, rode and looked new with lots of equipment.
What an idiot move I made!
So I start my quest to find out about the rattle, by now I had an idea it was piston slap. Service manager at one dealer shrugged his shoulders and said they all sounded like mine. Next I call Pontiac customer service and after some haggling low and behold they gave me an extended warranty for the engine for 100K/6 years. I was pretty happy but turn out this is standard procedure for GM. I have to say I was one year out of warranty window so I was pleasantly pleased.
Another dealer was reluctant to take on my cause fearing his own liability after he tears into the engine. Also he said he could not guarantee the noise would not return later.
I am a shadetree mechanic with previous experience about piston slap but ONLY with high miles so GM's claim of this being a nuisance issue only is IMHO corporate arrogance at it's best. In my judgement the two dealers I visited were not prepared for this type of heavy engine repair. Do they have clean rooms for assembling this stuff and are today's techs really experienced- yes Mr. Goodwrench I am talking about you- in the craft of engine repair?
Other than the rattle our van seems to run OK, uses no oil from 30K to 40K and about 18-19mpg in the city and about 23mpg on the road at 70-75 mph.
The rattle lasts about 2-3 minutes after coldstart and less if it just sits for couple of hours.
Has anybody accumulated substantial mileage yet on their rattlevan in suburban/city driving? I know there has to be others!
Or has anybody had their rattler repaired at a dealer with good results?
Does anybody know if GM fixed this issue yet whether it is a matter of piston design or machining the block or whatever??
I am aware of a TSB in regard to polymer coated pistons but I am not certain that if that would be the fix here.
Thanks to those who posted the airbag light fix of moving the seat up, it worked for me!
Hey on those flickering dash lights you can install the alternator ground screw yourself but it is a bit hard to access. It took me 20-30 minutes but I was too cheap to pay the dealer $80 to install a machine screw. BTW the only difference seems to be the new screw comes w/ a wavy washer under the head.
#961 of 1617 Re: Piston slapping Montana [alien10]
Nov 01, 2004 (3:14 pm)
98 Montana with 106K miles. Clatters for the first couple minutes however if the outside temperature is 60 or less, noise is less pronounced. Plus doesn't do it all the time. Still using 5W-30 Mobile 1 changed at 4K miles and living in Arizona. Occasionally pull a Coleman pop-up weighing 2800lbs. GM rebuilt the engine at 30K per a TSB that was susposed to address the problem. Kind of helped for awhile but over time the noise has returned. If you got GM to extend the warranty I'd drive it and not worry. I'd be more concern over the lower manifold gasket leaking. Keep a frequent check on your coolant level.
#962 of 1617 HI PERMORMANCE BRAKE PADS?
Nov 02, 2004 (1:40 pm)
is it worth it to get hi performance brake pads, I was at Autozone and saw a brochure on EBC brand premium brake pads and rotors, my 2002 silhouette is going to be about due soon for a brake job, these promise "better brakes, less dust", anyone have experience in this brand or other brands of high-performance brake pads and/or rotors?
#963 of 1617 Re: Piston slapping Montana [n7don]
Nov 02, 2004 (1:42 pm)
Thank you for your reply n7don.
Our van exhibits the rapping sound steadily every cold start. In our kind of driving the van gets a lot of cold starts, or at least where the engine has cooled down some.
I am thinking about running it thru the winter here in the Midwest and then pursuing repairs.
I have yet to see how it sounds at 10 degrees!
I am curious how long did your van stay quiet after the rebuild?
I keep pretty close tabs on our vehicles so hopefully I will be able to catch the intake gasket early if -or should I say when- it starts going.
#964 of 1617 Re: Oil life monitor [just4fun2]
Nov 02, 2004 (1:44 pm)
I have an '03 Silhouette with 37,000 miles. I changed the original factory oil to Mobil 1 at 5,000 miles and have used nothing else since. I get between 8,500 - 10,000 miles per oil change based on the monitoring system.
#966 of 1617 Re: Piston slapping Montana [alien10]
Nov 02, 2004 (5:54 pm)
Right after the rebuild there was slight but perceptable noise that most people would overlook. There wasn't a period where it dramatically increased. As a general statement at 70K that is 40K after the rebuild it was consistently evident there was a startup clatter. I'd say the noise level has stabilized over the past 10-15K miles.
The TSB used on my engine addressed noise caused by wrist-pin fit. If the tolerance of the hole was high and the pin low, the stackup would be a noise source.
#967 of 1617 Gabriel Highjackers install
Nov 09, 2004 (2:39 pm)
I have the Highjackers air shocks and the compressor spring upgrade ready to install, but have a question concerning the air lines. Can the stock air lines
be cut at the shock connectors and then have the connectors for the Gabriels spliced on? The stock lines seems like they're the same size as the lines for thr Gabriels. This would make things so much easier if it's possible. Any comments would be appreciated
#968 of 1617 Re: Gabriel Highjackers install [veestar]
Nov 11, 2004 (5:21 am)
That's what I did when I replaced a leaking OE air shock on the Montana with Highjackers.
#969 of 1617 Re: Gabriel Highjackers install [n7don]
Nov 11, 2004 (5:46 am)
Thanks for the reply Don. I changed the connectors as you did. Turned out to be a very simple job. Well, everything except removing the
air compressor for the spring upgrade. I never did get that thing out. Everything seems ok without the upgraded spring so I'll play it from there. Thanks again for the response.