My 98 Monte Carlo z34

Messages
876
Location
US
I just bought the 98 Monte Carlo z34 with 109,000 at a charity auction. It is the 3800 Series II One owner So Ca and it seems to have sat for 2 years. I was actually able to talk to the owner prior to buying and he said he did all the maintenance (yet 2 old open recalls were not done-steering and engine fires) so I don't really know. He also said the emergency flasher button broke and the blinkers stopped working. I took the car to chevy for the recalls and an oil change Do I do a transmission flush or a change? (I know old bmw's-they say not too as they start to slip) Do I do a coolant flush or change Issues:The car gets stuck in park and I have to pull up the console cover and push down that button. The button on the shifter seems to be working fine. I read here about unplugging the solenoid. Will that work in my case? The blinkers...Any thoughts? Thanks, Steve
 
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8,306
Location
Grand Rapids, MI
We have the same shifter issue with our Grand Am. Usually if we just push the brake and the shifter button really hard we can get it to release after a while. I'd love to know if you figure it out.
 
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12,925
Location
Northern Kentucky
Yes and Yes to the transmission fluid/coolant. The coolant i would flush and replace with something new like Zerex G05 or Motorcraft Gold after you get all the old stuff out. Transmission fluid, i would do a pan drop/filter change and refill with Valvoline Maxlife Dex/Merc synthetic ATF. Does the fluid have a good color to it still? If fluid condition appears good that 1 pan drop should last 30k, but if its nasty or dark or burnt smelling rinse and repeat again in 1,000 miles with new fluid, and a 3rd time in another 1,000 miles.
 
Messages
36,475
Location
ME
Drop pan and change fluid. You "should" be able to get it out of park with the key in ACC, the solenoid comes on with the key fully on (running) while the anti theft cable is only with the key off and out. Of course all this stuff can get out of whack. I'd go after that devil solenoid with whatever smashing stick you have handy. wink
 
Messages
25,975
Location
MA, Mittelfranken.de
Steve already PM on the fluid so i will just address the shifting from park issue. Feel free to post my PM if you think someone might find it useful. There is a small white solenoid in the steering column near the ignition switch, take the upper and lower covers off (you can weasel them without pulling the wheel) and remove this little solenoid. Just leave the wire in there, it has an insulated connector. This cures the issue forever the only thing is you can shut it off in drive or neutral and take the key out. It does not disable the park interlock system, once its in park. Not a real issue but be aware of it. You can of course replace the little doodad with another short life replacement PITA.
 
Messages
4,942
Location
Kansas
Somewhere DEEP in my brain, I seem to recall that changing the alternator in a 3800-engined Monte Carlo is a royal PITA. I guess if you never have to change the alternator it shouldn't bother you. But since you have right at 110K miles on your car, I just thought I'd bring up the subject....
 
Messages
10,008
Location
Upstate NY
One last thing: The petcocks on the radiator like to freeze into place, and then not seal once removed. I'd drain/fill through the radiator cap instead. That will get most of the coolant out of the system. For the ATF, dropping a very long line down the dipstick tube to pump out the pan is a lot easier and less messy than dropping the pan full of ATF. I'd consider adding a Trans-Go shift kit to help with the PCS issues that transmission is bound to have sooner or later at that mileage. For a specific ATF, Valvoline Max-Life ATF is great in those transmissions.
 
Messages
4,112
Location
Central Virginia
Originally Posted By: Merkava_4
Fluid flushes is a gimmick; just drain and refill. Use 50% distilled water and 50% coolant. DO NOT USE TAP WATER.
GM says it's OK to use tap water.
 
Messages
17,501
Location
Clovis, CA
Originally Posted By: Silverado12
GM says it's OK to use tap water.
For as cheap as distilled water is at Walmart, I don't use tap water. I've seen what tap water does to a radiator; it clogs it up full of calcium.
 

clarkflower

Thread starter
Messages
876
Location
US
After some wd 40 the shift has not locked up all day Got a radio for 100. Freon worked on the ac. Got smogged. I just found that the third brake light in the rear window works. Would it work if it was in the steering column?
Originally Posted By: ThirdeYe
We have the same shifter issue with our Grand Am. Usually if we just push the brake and the shifter button really hard we can get it to release after a while. I'd love to know if you figure it out.
 
Last edited:
Messages
11,384
Location
Phoenix
Originally Posted By: clarkflower
After some wd 40 the shift has not locked up all day Got a radio for 100. Freon worked on the ac. Got smogged. I just found that the third brake light in the rear window works. Would it work if it was in the steering column?
Originally Posted By: ThirdeYe
We have the same shifter issue with our Grand Am. Usually if we just push the brake and the shifter button really hard we can get it to release after a while. I'd love to know if you figure it out.
A lot of cars from that era would still flash the 4 ways but light up the third brake light solid if you hit the brake. It sounds like your hazard switch might be stuck halfway between on and off or missing some type of a connection. It's known bad (physically broken) so I'd replace it and see what happens...if it were me.
 
Messages
25,975
Location
MA, Mittelfranken.de
Originally Posted By: Silverado12
Originally Posted By: Merkava_4
Fluid flushes is a gimmick; just drain and refill. Use 50% distilled water and 50% coolant. DO NOT USE TAP WATER.
GM says it's OK to use tap water.
Can you provide a link to where GM makes that blanket statement?
 
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