Engine photos, 1999 122K miles Buick Regal GS 3800

Not open for further replies.
Mar 3, 2011
Hello: I thought I'd post some pictures of my Dad's 1999 Buick Regal GS. This is the 3800 supercharged motor. Dad bought it new in 1999, me helping him pick out this particular car from the new car lot. Dad died two years ago tomorrow (August 10, 2012). He was 88. He was always a car guy (his high water mark a 1965 Pontiac Tri-power Grand Prix). He was a really healthy guy and drove safely until about 6 months before he died. I ended up with his car at that point. It had 88K miles on it. Dad had it regularly serviced by the Buick dealer, including having a yearly oil change using whatever oil they used. Long story short, at the time I was racking up HUGE miles and when I got the car I used it rather than my pristine, low mileage BMW. Inside the oil cap the motor looked fairly clean, but I wanted it even cleaner. I had a large supply of Pentosin 0w-30 VS A3/B4 oil which I started using, changing the oil and filter every 5K miles. Given how much I was driving I did five oil changes in a 12 month period. At 122K miles I decided to replace the problematic intake manifold gaskets (they are prone to cause coolant to leak into the oil). Though a Blackstone UOA indicated no problem I replaced them just to to be safe. The car was in such fantastic condition it deserved the gasket change. The car didn't have a single door ding or rock chip (original paint). No joke. This is what the motor looked like when I opening it up. Once again, this is a 15 year old motor with 122K miles on it. The only thing cleaned is the head surface where the intake manifold sits. The valley, the valve cover, the valve train are completely "virgin" and were NOT wiped clean. Amazing, eh? Scott
Great engine. The boosted 3.8 was one of the best engines ever put into a vehicle. A friend had a 99,same as yours and it could get almost 30mpg highway if kept out of boost. And looks like the oil your using is doing a great job. Keep up the good work
Very nice shape , your dad would be pleased smile . You know , most engines are likely near the same as far as being clean yet we have so many members worry about clean engines who do regular OCI's . I'll bet if more who fuss and worry about regular OCI's had the chance to open their engine up like you did it would be much the same . Good call on changing those gaskets , why wait till it happens ! Sorry for the loss of your dad , my dad passed a year ago last August and he was 88 as well . His last car was a 2000 Taurus SEL with the Duratec , he still loved a car having some zip to it !
Last edited:
Amazing, thats about the cleanest engine internals i've seen. Do you attribute this to the pentosin, or just good oil change intervals throughout?
My guess is that its the base oil in the Pentosin thats making the engine this clean. Less junk in the base oil, better synthetic components, cleaner engine. The calcium/magnesium detergent amounts appear to be about typical. Even with changing oil that often, some oils might not come out as clean. My take anyway.
Sweetness....what was your Dad's OCI? You said a year but I was a bit confused when you said you were using it with huge miles?
Not open for further replies.