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Discussion Starter #1
Hi all, well my car is in the shop - Head Gasket it looks like and I know there is some other "stuff" wrong with it. Its a 95 Grand Am so its looking like its time for her to go to vehicle Heaven (or Hell but she was a good car) Anyway, I have changed the head gaskets 2 other times since owning her (once was covered under warranty) so Im NOT doing it again.

My question: I have always wanted a New G6 or Hybrid Civic, due to financial circumstances and this happening quicker than originally anticipated, I will have to lower my expectations.
I have been looking for a car that "looks" like the G6 but will cost me half the price per month. I looked at the Toyota Corolla and Kia Spectra LX Convenience. They are both in my price range.

Any suggesstions, comments or perhaps you take on these or any other vechicles I may seek out.

Thanks!

PS: I must be in love with the look of my car - I am that vain, and its important to me. I absolutly love the Grand Am I have now, I am getting teary-eyed just writing this post....
 

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ive seen this 2 times with with grand ams and it was b/c of deck warpage ......the other time head gasket was changed was the head resurfaced?
 

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i test drove a 2001 Toyota Corolla and i can honestly say i was impressed ....and the kia i just plain dislike all kias
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I dont know about the head gasket question - that was 3 years ago and 6 years ago. Been a while. As far as the Corolla - thanks for the info, I will see. I am not sure about the Kia myself.

I just priced out a G6 and perhaps it might just be in my price range if I keep the options down, any comments about the G6 - anyone own one?
 

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I have been a Honda owner for the last 12 years. I can honestly say that the Civic is one of the most dependable cars I've ever owned. I had an accident last week with my 95 Civic and had to junk her, even though I drove her home with no problems. Just purchased a newer car yesterday, you guessed it, Honda Civic!
I'm sorry about your Pontiac, how many miles did you get out of it?
 

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Discussion Starter #7
230000 KMs on it. so it really doesnt owe me much. I am seriously thinking about the Honda too, but seems too little for me, I will have to see what the next car up cost is. My brother had a Civic -traded it in for a Nissan X-Terra and regrests it - he was a truck guy before the Civic so he wanted another "truck" for Southern Ont Driving.

Thanks again for the info: Im off to the Honda site.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Liked the article - am printing it out for amunition against my bro and spouse - they both want me to stay away from Pontiacs.
 

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I got my wife the Element, she loves it. it's basically the family truckster, the lack of carpet and neoprene seats are perfect when you've got a messy 2 yo throwing his milk around...
320,000 kms is like 142,000 miles, you should be able to get at least 200,000 out of a car without blowing a head gasket, right? My Civic (the one I pranged) has 186,000 on it and is still running without losing a drop of oil.
The G6 looks like a nice car, and the price is right. I don't know much about Pontiacs, but they always seem to have great styling.
Good luck & drive safely.
 

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well a head gasket can go at anytime lets say you have a faulty thermostat and driver wasnt paying attention to temperture guage runs hot enough possible head gasket blow ....most likely the radiator hoses would pop first but hey anythings possible.......and i have heard the head gaskets go on grand ams few times its gotta be pontiacs problem .....id call em and see if theres a recall you said happened twice already .....that just seems odd had a bud with one......the mech. he went to said warped head so maybe its bad mating surface .....bad head....i dunno just suggestion ....
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Well I had good news then bad news..... I talked to my mechanic and he said that it was just a heater core (295.00 plus tax) YAAAYYYYYY I was so excited. Then I said R U sure its not the head gasket cuz there was white smoke coming from the exhaust when my bro hammered the gas. he said oooohhhhh. (oops did I forget to mention that....) So hes looking at it again....

Last night it did overheat but not to the point of rad hoses (just the little marker went into the red a bit on the temp guage) My bro is saying now that I may have warped the head... if thats the case, Im still looking for a new car, if its not, I get to keep my baby for another year.

There is supposed to be a "silent recall" on the gasket thingy, we will see if its covered... but I bet ya its not.

The element is too big for me, too boxy, I want something sleek and sporty yet a 30 something type car.... If that makes any sense at all.

Keep up the great ideas, I could use all the advise I could get...
 

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295 isnt a bad price for heater core......and they HAVE to fix gasket problem silient or not they just dont have to tell ya about it is coolant leaking inside car on passenger front seat carpet? that would be heater core or fog comming from vents? might be t stat also if its stuck shut wuill run hot or no coolant or just need a coolant flush and if you didnt drive long when was running hot prolly didnt warp head and the white smoke comming from exhaust could be valve seals going out or burnt rings........oh running hot could also be a water pump or your elec.. fan or fans or thermastatic switch isnt turning fans on or relays for fans might be bad if fans are not cutting on
 

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We just bought a 2006 Toyota Corolla in January and LOVE it. Before that, we had a 1992 Corolla and it died just short of 300,000 miles. From personal experience, you can't beat a Toyota, but that's just my humble opinion.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Well we will see - r u a mechanic? you know so much! WOW. My mechanic said that there is a part on my car so when the heater core does go it will pour outside the car and not on the carpet which is what happened.

Valve seals and burnt rings would also be a do not fix for me. Too much money! I had my seals done once Im sure of it, covered under warranty many years ago... Geeze as I think of all these things I have done, my care is a money pit!!! but I love her....

Anyway, just looked at the Hyundai elantra VE 4 door - Im thinking this just might be my car. Has all the bells and wistles I am used to but its a 4 cylinder. I am use to A V6. I think I can deal iwht that though. Its a 2.0 and I have a 3.1 L. I dont really need that much power... do I ???Anyway, it looks sharp in Black and the front end looks like a grand prix to me (remember my stipulatons)

So any comments on this car?
 

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Hellrazor said:
Well we will see - r u a mechanic? you know so much! WOW. My mechanic said that there is a part on my car so when the heater core does go it will pour outside the car and not on the carpet which is what happened.

Valve seals and burnt rings would also be a do not fix for me. Too much money! I had my seals done once Im sure of it, covered under warranty many years ago... Geeze as I think of all these things I have done, my care is a money pit!!! but I love her....

Anyway, just looked at the Hyundai elantra VE 4 door - Im thinking this just might be my car. Has all the bells and wistles I am used to but its a 4 cylinder. I am use to A V6. I think I can deal iwht that though. Its a 2.0 and I have a 3.1 L. I dont really need that much power... do I ???Anyway, it looks sharp in Black and the front end looks like a grand prix to me (remember my stipulatons)

So any comments on this car?
i guess you can call me a mechanic .....how thick is the white smoke i have added additives in the past and solved those probs ....and why its over heating is clear ...your coolant runs through the core and if its cracked it dumped all of it out on ground like you said so has no coolant......well we bought a hyundai sonata first year they came out and it was a leamon ....so that turned me against those all together ........so your in better shape with that grand am then you thought you were plus while they changing core they have to change the gasket prob for free ....recall and all silient or not.....about the rings need to have a compression check done to see if it was rings i said that as a possible ...prolly not rings so dont worry yet
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Im waiting to hear back right now, will keep you posted. thanks for all your ideas and help, its giving me some questions to ask my mechanic so I sound like I know what Im talking about - I HATE being a girl going to the mechanic, Im pretty smart but they always talk down.... GGGGRRRRR

Oh did I rant there????Lol
 

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Hellrazor said:
Im waiting to hear back right now, will keep you posted. thanks for all your ideas and help, its giving me some questions to ask my mechanic so I sound like I know what Im talking about - I HATE being a girl going to the mechanic, Im pretty smart but they always talk down.... GGGGRRRRR

Oh did I rant there????Lol
i help with cars anytime hey ...moisture in tail pipe can also produce white smoke which is nothing at all as long as it is moisture.....have you had any type of power loss?
 

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Discussion Starter #18
not really, but the last times i had the gaskets changed i didnt notice, realized my coolent was leaking but not going anywhere and brought it in. Its hard to say. Guess play the waiting game....
 

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Hellrazor said:
not really, but the last times i had the gaskets changed i didnt notice, realized my coolent was leaking but not going anywhere and brought it in. Its hard to say. Guess play the waiting game....
no power loss dont worry about piston rings then ....just curious how long did you drive car while needle in the red? are they looking at car right now? tell me everything he says .....i hate the waiting game :) i just dont wanna see anyone get taken by a mechanic .....
 

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Discussion Starter #20
For starters I noticed a burning coolent smell, thinking it was a driver infront of me I passed him, then it didnt go away. I pulled off the highway (oh ya, I was on the highway) towards my destination and at the stop light i noticed the needle was creaping into the red and my check guages light was on. I drove it maybe a mile in the red - thats pushing it. I saw the smoke, turned on my air conditioning to "cool" (dumb idea) then all the smoke came in my vents. Notsure if there was smoke until that point or not - I could just smell burnt coolent - then the needle was just inside the red, so I pulled over, lifted my hood and waited about 15 min to cool down. there was coolent alllllll over the ground at this point.
Usually I keep coolent and water in my trunk but since I purchased pressure treated ties this weekend for my gardens, the water and coolent is on the ground beside my house......

So I drove about 4 blocks to the school i go to at night and parked it. I phoned my bro and went to class. 3 hours later i went out and opened the resivoir (empty as predicted). My bro came and filled up the resivoir - took 1.5 whole bottles of premixed coolent. We then drove it back (so not the water pump) and smoke was no longer coming out of vents inside car. I live 30 mins away from where it was parked. It did not go into the red this time, it would creap up then drop back then creap up then drop back.
Then my bro gunned it (to see what would happen) and white billowey smoke came out of tail pipe. So he did it again so I could see it (agains my wishes) and it did it again. But we did not notice it doing that regularly. So we dropped it off at the mechanics

he called me back and said heater core, he had pressure tested it. I said, are you sure.... bla bla bal. and he said he will look at it again and call... still waiting.

So thats the whole story in a nut shell. I did not notice anything odd before yesterday.
 
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