Average Life Expectancy


LuminaPat
11-27-2005, 04:59 PM
Just wondering what you guys think the average life expectancy is of the 3.1's. I have a 98 in average shape (soon to be great shape) at 190k and was wondering if it can reach 300k. Anybody out there with a 3.1 getting close?

northwichita
11-29-2005, 08:28 PM
I own a 95 buick century with the 3.1 , 296,000 miles , still runs strong, has minor oil drip, and an occasional (?monthly) odd backfire in the intake, that blows off a vaccuum hose when I start it. It was a college owned car, so I know it's maintenance, and the engine has never been opened.

jeffcoslacker
11-29-2005, 08:35 PM
Just wondering what you guys think the average life expectancy is of the 3.1's. I have a 98 in average shape (soon to be great shape) at 190k and was wondering if it can reach 300k. Anybody out there with a 3.1 getting close?

I don't see why not...you'll probably end up needing a timing chain and tensioner before then, but who knows? Long as the oil change is regular and you don't overheat it, I could see it.

My '97 has over 120,000 now and still runs the same as it always did since new, and doesn't use any oil, so I expect a lot more use out of it.

LuminaPat
11-29-2005, 09:49 PM
you'll probably end up needing a timing chain and tensioner before then....

Thats good to know. When I asked about service and repair in a different thread paulfischer gave me some advice on where to start repairs. Should I add changing the timing belt to the list below?


1. change plugs, wires, air/ fule filter. Use only ac delco plugs. (on my 3.8, anything else car runs like crap) and get good wires.

2. Replace PCV valce.

3. Run some seafoam or gm top end cleaner through it.

4. do coolant flush and refill. I'd repalce the hoses, all of them. Radiator and heater hoses.

5. Replace the thermostat.

6. As for tranny, at 100,000 miles I just changes the fluid and filter, and put in a bottle of LUBEGARD ATF PROTECTANT, and I have not had any problems. I stayed away from the "flush", too many bad stories.

7. I would change the belt also.

jeffcoslacker
11-30-2005, 11:01 AM
You have a chain, not a belt, it's internal and is more involved than a timing belt. Seems like they usually break or skip sometime around 175,000, so if you just got the car it may have been done already.

But then again, sometimes you get one that'll run to the grave with the original chainset. Sometimes the chain and gears are still fine, but the tensioner falls apart...you never know.

Water pumps are rael easy to put on, I can do one in about 30 mins on the 3.1, so I put one on mine for piece of mind at 70,000, even though it was still OK. I'll probably put another one and a new thermostat in it at about 130,000, like I said, overheat is what I'm most paranoid about, just takes once to ruin an otherwise perfect motor.

jeffcoslacker
11-30-2005, 11:03 AM
PS I'm with Paul on the tranny flush...bad news.

botteman
12-16-2005, 10:20 PM
PS I'm with Paul on the tranny flush...bad news.
Me too on the flush. After I did a power flush on '90 APV at around 100k miles, the torque converter clutch stuck. I disconnected the electrical connector for it (over 300k miles ago) and haven't looked back.

My 3.1 had 287k miles when the timing chain broke. Overhauled the engine and the van now has 423k miles, with original unserviced tranny.

They can last a long time with proper maintenance. (I've used Prolong oil treatment on both engines.)

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