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Is the Chevy Venture a good van??

02-02-2010, 03:25 PM
My wife and I have decided to stick with no car loans so i'm looking at 2000-2004 minivans.

Are the Ventures ok? I see a lot of trouble with intake gaskets, any paticular year that was trouble or all yrs on the Venture?

On a side note and I know this is the wrong forum but would you buy a Venture or a Chrysler Town&Country?


02-07-2010, 10:23 AM
I would say the Venture is a good van. It is not the best..... the Honda Oddyssey seems to handle and perform slightly better, but is usually more expensive to buy used. So, imo the Venture does everything a van should do, and does it reasonably well. For the relatively low used purchase price, this is a very good deal.... a lot of van for the money.

As for the Chrysler...... as a former owner of a 99 Voyager with expensive problems, I shy away from Chrysler minivans. Newer Chrysler minivans are better, I'm sure, but I have more trust in GM. :)

02-07-2010, 01:46 PM
Well, I have a '99 Pontiac Montana that my inlaws bought new and I bought it from them in '05. It has had the intake manifold gasket replaced twice, both under warranty, and the second one (replaced at around 95,000 miles with the latest GM version of the gasket) is still holding up. Transmission rebuilt under warranty at around 50,000 miles, and seems fine since then. The van now has 199,000 miles and has been pretty good for us. Had the harmonic balancer replaced, I replaced both front wheel bearing assemblys, tensioner, and various maint. items (front brakes, serp. belt, fluids, filters, plugs, wires). I can't complain for how it has done under our ownership, however, the in-laws had a fair amount fixed (apparently fixed right) under warranty before we bought it. They bought an '05 Grand Caravan new that they have had zero problems with it, now at nearly 100,000 miles. I would venture to guess they would say the '05 Grand Caravan came out of the factory built better than the '99 Montana. It would be interesting to see how their next 100,000 miles will be but I would imagine they are going to trade it in. We will be moving on to something bigger next, as we now have 4 kiddos.

02-09-2010, 02:57 PM
The intake gasket issue was fixed for model year 2003 and newer. I have an '02 Montana and work on several other Ventures and Silhouettes. All of the vans I work on (I own a small one-man shop) have over 100k miles on them (2 of them have over 160k) and they have only needed minor repairs. I don't think you will find a better, more comfortable, better handling, more reliable minivan for the money. Sure, the imports are nice, but they are expensive to repair and believe it or not, they DO need repair every now and then. As for the Dodge/Chrysler minivans I would stay away from them too unless you like spending a lot of money on chasing down electrical issues with the transmissions and TCM's (who's idea was it to put the TCM up under the front-end right in the airstream so every puddle you go through or rainstorm throws water right at the computer?). These are just my opinions.

02-10-2010, 08:49 PM
Chevy Venture is a very problematic van. However it rides nicely, gets great mileage and in general makes a great highway van. If you look through this forum you will find many problems. The good parts is that most problems are documented so you know what to expect and how to fix.

Below is a quick list of a few common problems:

Blower motor resistor
Front Winshield Wiper motor
Rear Winshield Wiper motor
Rear Tail light circuit boards.
Rear hatch handle
Corrosion on electrical connectors under carpeting
Body rusting around rear rocker panels
Headlights get hazed with moisture
Hard shifting transmission solenoid problem
O ring on Oil pump drive shaft
Power door problems

09-17-2010, 10:19 PM
My daughter bought a venture despite my advise against it. She had her reasons why she wanted it, and unfortunately, I have had to pay the price because I am the "mechanic" of the family. It has definitly given me some gray hairs a little earlier than I was ready for.

I have stayed with Astro/Safari vans since 1986, because of the dependable and rugged service we have had with them. Two of mine are over mi, one over mi, and 2 just under mi. All that with only regular maintenance, and mostly minor stuff: fuel pumps, water pumps, altenators, suspension and steering hard parts, T.B.A., and very little else.

I may sound like an advertisement for Astros, and I'm not saying that you can expect to have no problems, but, when you find a winner, and have good success, you gotta stick with it.

As far as brand, I would stick with Chevy.

Good luck finding the truck that is right for you.


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