Tachometer going out.

Buickguy123

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FSM Field Service Manual or Full Service Manual.
Shop ended up replacing CPS and the HB as it was cracked. Yet, the tachometer briefly went out yesterday. Code 56 is gone. Now I still have the SC pulley squeal on start up. Heater core seeems to be leaking since passenger carpet under dash is quite damp. Coolant tank empty. Oil level fine. ATF lines leaking near the ATF cooler. No more shops!! Could be just time to sell it on Craigslist. Somebody with skills beyond mine might keep it going supposedly the engine should be good after they changed the gaskets but I am not sure of what they did? Wires are running in places not there before? Time for a new Buick? Toyota?
 

Mad_Coachman

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Sometimes it's best to cut your losses and move on. You get the chance to fall in love all over again with your latest purchase and hopefully not open another can of worms. I get a "new" one very 3-5 years for one reason or another but with cars this old they're usually an excellent value if you know what to look for.
 

Buickguy123

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Sometimes it's best to cut your losses and move on. You get the chance to fall in love all over again with your latest purchase and hopefully not open another can of worms. I get a "new" one very 3-5 years for one reason or another but with cars this old they're usually an excellent value if you know what to look for.
Although I work on my cars when I can, I wish I could find an honest mechanic or shop in metro Denver? How can somebody work on your car, fix one thing, then hand it back the next day while the car still has issues and problems? I have had it happen way too many times. Pay good money get the car back and then I am out there fiddling with it the next day because they did not listen to me or diagnose all problems. Scum bags! If you asked me where to take your car for service here in Denver I would laugh and say good luck you are on your own pray!
 

BuickGirlFromMars

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Although I work on my cars when I can, I wish I could find an honest mechanic or shop in metro Denver? How can somebody work on your car, fix one thing, then hand it back the next day while the car still has issues and problems? I have had it happen way too many times. Pay good money get the car back and then I am out there fiddling with it the next day because they did not listen to me or diagnose all problems. Scum bags! If you asked me where to take your car for service here in Denver I would laugh and say good luck you are on your own pray!
I double as both my mechanic and gruntled customer so it works out naturally
Boosted yet by my status of human torque wrench
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Buickguy123

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I double as both my mechanic and gruntled customer so it works out naturally
Boosted yet by my status of human torque wrench
LOL you will be disappointed to know that the shop that replaced my sensor and harmonic balancer used the old bolt and did not use a new one charging me $35 when they cost around $8. With that said, the tachometer is still acting up so Monday I will call the shop and ask why my tachometer is not fixed? The engine is running ok but as before the tachomoter is dead at times upon start up and after a few miles it comes on erratic then seems to work fine. The mechanic also left two large pins extruding from the harness into the coil pack. I think this was to test the sensor with a ohmeter or something? Forgot to remove them??? I discovered my neighbor had actually changed the CPS 5 years ago since I have a Autozone receipt for it. Can it be tested not connected to the motor? Maybe it is just fine?
 

Buickguy123

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There is a point in a vehicles repair and costs where the only value left in it is.....
View attachment 30344

*Please note no Buicks were harmed during the making of this movie.
True! Then there are cars in Cuba that are 50 years and they have them running. Maybe Cuban mechanics are better than American mechanics or at least in Denver?
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Mad_Coachman

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True! Then there are cars in Cuba that are 50 years and they have them running. Maybe Cuban mechanics are better than American mechanics or at least in Denver?
They have no choice due to the trade embargo. Many of those old cars have totally different drivetrains now (like Diesel engines). You learn to work with what's available ;)
 

Buickguy123

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They have no choice due to the trade embargo. Many of those old cars have totally different drivetrains now (like Diesel engines). You learn to work with what's available ;)
My neighbor who did work for me but cannot now to age and health, is a really good mechanic, thinks my Buick, in spite of some issues, has a lot of life in it....I agree....I am going to work on it a bit more....weather is good now....cheers.
 

Buickguy123

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Yesterday I spent 4 hours taking the belts off. Removed the alternator. Drained the SC fluid again. Removed the little bypass coolant elbow. The plan was to remove the SC cover and inspect the coupler which supposedly was changed? As it turned out I ended up just tigthening the SC nuts. One was very loose hence the leakage in SC fluid around the coolant elbow. So I also cleaned the pulleys again. Put the belts on and started it up. Car stuttered SES light came on and dies. Then it ran and I drove it around the block before it died on the street then would start and run rough then die. My thinking is that the shop put in a defective CPS sensor. Did not line it up with the HB teeth or as suggested there is a short in the wiring harness somewhere and my moving them around through a short again?? They returned the car with two long silver pins in the ignition coils harness. I guess to test the electrical connections. The tachometer is totally dead now. I drove 4 miles from the shop to my home and the coolant recovery tank was empty as well? Did the drain it? I filled it up and drove the and lost nothing? I will call the shop but they will want more money I think...if I can even drive it over there...pay for a tow again....or donate it to a charity I know of here....both this shop and the other clowns got or are getting some nasty ratings on Google reviews. They are supposed to be professionals are they not? They charge me $169 for a HB that cost $108 where they bought it. Car shop scams! Oh well...
 

Mad_Coachman

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No matter what auto shop you use they are going to charge you more for the parts than what you would pay through Amazon or Rock Auto. It's not a scam. It's a business model that has been in practice for a very long time. They do this to cover themselves if a job comes back to them due to a defective part. This is just pure business economics. A reputable shop generally has a finite group of parts houses that they rely upon so that they don't get burned using sub standard parts.
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BuickGirlFromMars

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Yesterday I spent 4 hours taking the belts off. Removed the alternator. Drained the SC fluid again. Removed the little bypass coolant elbow. The plan was to remove the SC cover and inspect the coupler which supposedly was changed? As it turned out I ended up just tigthening the SC nuts. One was very loose hence the leakage in SC fluid around the coolant elbow. So I also cleaned the pulleys again. Put the belts on and started it up. Car stuttered SES light came on and dies. Then it ran and I drove it around the block before it died on the street then would start and run rough then die. My thinking is that the shop put in a defective CPS sensor. Did not line it up with the HB teeth or as suggested there is a short in the wiring harness somewhere and my moving them around through a short again?? They returned the car with two long silver pins in the ignition coils harness. I guess to test the electrical connections. The tachometer is totally dead now. I drove 4 miles from the shop to my home and the coolant recovery tank was empty as well? Did the drain it? I filled it up and drove the and lost nothing? I will call the shop but they will want more money I think...if I can even drive it over there...pay for a tow again....or donate it to a charity I know of here....both this shop and the other clowns got or are getting some nasty ratings on Google reviews. They are supposed to be professionals are they not? They charge me $169 for a HB that cost $108 where they bought it. Car shop scams! Oh well...
The bolt shouldn’t have been reused but it’s gonna have to work. The tachometer relies on signals from crank sensor BUT LIKE WE SAID the wiring can be the issue and not the sensor or the tachometer physical stepper motor could be worn out you CANNOT know without looking at live data abs seeing if the reference circuit for the crank sensor comes and goes at the same time as the tachometer stops

if the rpm never changes according to the data and tach cuts, the connection between pcm and ip or tach is suspect. If rpm cuts with tech, sensor or wiring to pcm, or rare case pcm is suspect.
 

Buickguy123

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The bolt shouldn’t have been reused but it’s gonna have to work. The tachometer relies on signals from crank sensor BUT LIKE WE SAID the wiring can be the issue and not the sensor or the tachometer physical stepper motor could be worn out you CANNOT know without looking at live data abs seeing if the reference circuit for the crank sensor comes and goes at the same time as the tachometer stops

if the rpm never changes according to the data and tach cuts, the connection between pcm and ip or tach is suspect. If rpm cuts with tech, sensor or wiring to pcm, or rare case pcm is suspect.
I think it is the wiring. PITA finding the short? Looking at some receipts the sensor was replaced in 2015 and the HB in 2017. Autozone parts. Now the car is throwing codes 18 41 58 and 66. 58 is Vats and 66 is low AC refrigerant. In spite of VATS code the car always starts and Security light goes off after 30 seconds. When the car heats to 220 degrees the fans come on and it dies. 18 and 41 codes could be the cam not crank sensor but those codes were never there before? Did coolant get on that when I pulled that little coolant elbow tube? Those wires are compromised too? The SC is leaking fluid at the bottom still I think from a lose nut I cannot reach without pulling a lot out of the way. That hot leaking SC fluid damaged the wires? A mechanic supposedly changed the coupler. Did he use a gasket or not replacing the cover or did he overfill it? One nut was loose for sure and I tightened that and the leak is not as bad. It seems the squeal has gone away with proper SC fluid levels. For now anyway. Maybe replacing all the wires is the answer? Finding a short is not something I have done. The stupid shop was supposed to fix this!! Ugh!
 

Buickguy123

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No matter what auto shop you use they are going to charge you more for the parts than what you would pay through Amazon or Rock Auto. It's not a scam. It's a business model that has been in practice for a very long time. They do this to cover themselves if a job comes back to them due to a defective part. This is just pure business economics. A reputable shop generally has a finite group of parts houses that they rely upon so that they don't get burned using sub standard parts.
All made in China?
 

Mad_Coachman

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Many parts are made in China today such as the vaunted AC Delco brand and Delphi. Many tears ago I considered Bosch to be a good brand but have had some failures with a fuel pump for my 1997 Olds 88 (sold) and one of there fancy Platinum +4 spark plugs. I would never purchase Bosch again for those reasons. A lot of parts are made in Mexico as well. It's purely an economic decision by manufacturers. For sensors such as a cam sensor or oil pressure sensor I have had good results with Standard Motor Products.

As far as your latest code the cam sensor is easy to replace. It was one bolt and one connector on my last Buick (2001 Lesabre Limited). Easy peasy.
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Buickguy123

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Many parts are made in China today such as the vaunted AC Delco brand and Delphi. Many tears ago I considered Bosch to be a good brand but have had some failures with a fuel pump for my 1997 Olds 88 (sold) and one of there fancy Platinum +4 spark plugs. I would never purchase Bosch again for those reasons. A lot of parts are made in Mexico as well. It's purely an economic decision by manufacturers. For sensors such as a cam sensor or oil pressure sensor I have had good results with Standard Motor Products.

As far as your latest code the cam sensor is easy to replace. It was one bolt and one connector on my last Buick (2001 Lesabre Limited). Easy peasy.
Correct! As well the cam sensor is easy to replace I can see that but this code 41 only showed up two days ago. I disconnected the little coolant bypass hose to check for leaks and coolant oozed out and I was not expecting that. It may have gotten the cam sensor wires wet? What I suspect is that, again, when I was moving the wires around taking out and filling SC fluid the short in the wires is acting up? Hot SC fluid leaking has also destroyed the cover of some wires in places. Gator covers? So if the cam and crank sensor wires are compromised split broken whatever I get no tach and these codes? Bad wires? I dunno...the shop just charged me a lot to change the CPS and the HB. Their "diagnoses" did not find a harness issue? They want me to bring it back...not sure it will make it..another tow charge? I do not trust them... A new cam sensor is cheap I could try one...where does buy a FSM? Ebay?
 

Mad_Coachman

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Sounds like a good place to start your search. Just be prepared to dig in and get your hands dirty. Considering that you've already had a shop do a lot of work I don't really think that an FSM is the answer. You need tools and most importantly the ambition and patience to take on your car issues. In my case I have the tools but I just don't have the same ambition and patience that I had even 20 years ago. This is why I do my due diligence online and know when to move on and buy a car with "good bones" rather than buy something even older than I already have and wind up with a restoration "project" that isn't going to appreciate in value like a classic car or muscle car would.
 
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BuickGirlFromMars

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C
Correct! As well the cam sensor is easy to replace I can see that but this code 41 only showed up two days ago. I disconnected the little coolant bypass hose to check for leaks and coolant oozed out and I was not expecting that. It may have gotten the cam sensor wires wet? What I suspect is that, again, when I was moving the wires around taking out and filling SC fluid the short in the wires is acting up? Hot SC fluid leaking has also destroyed the cover of some wires in places. Gator covers? So if the cam and crank sensor wires are compromised split broken whatever I get no tach and these codes? Bad wires? I dunno...the shop just charged me a lot to change the CPS and the HB. Their "diagnoses" did not find a harness issue? They want me to bring it back...not sure it will make it..another tow charge? I do not trust them... A new cam sensor is cheap I could try one...where does buy a FSM? Ebay?
Code 41 on early 3800..not sure when the cut off happened... was almost always a result of the magnet on the camshaft breaking off it’s plastic holder which means no matter how much you replace on the wiring or sensor, it will not resolve. The engine runs without the camshaft sensor but 1/4 or 1/6 firing events will be improper. But it will not affect the engine beings able to run or drive etc. it will not make the engine sound bad either. I know because my first car has an LN3 and has that issue. Runs good.

all wiring on the side of the engine should be insulated wires running into a single loom wrapped in tape (vinyl) and plastic conduit. At the ends, for the sensors, the wiring should be either terminating into a weatherpack or a Merrimack which are rather resilient connections.
To my memory, the only connections in the timing cover should be a large harness that goes down from either in front of the motor by the ICM and connects to the crank sensor amd the camshaft sensor and possibly a single connector for an AC Purpose. Up top, it branches to the ICM Andnthen over the top engine into a main harness which groups injectors, sensors, egr,etc.

So unless you see physical damage to your harness and connectors, I do not have reason to think your wiring is bad. The way it’s routed and secured keeps it from abrasion and harsh chemicals unless it was monkeyed with. Can you show us some pics of what we are talking about? You have a lot of questions but you aren’t showing us anything.
Your sc fluid shouldn’t be hitting wiring in enough quantity to cause damage. It’s 5w30 with animal fats. It’s on the corrosive/degrading side but I don’t see insulated wiring protected by conduit being harmed.
Your tach will work with crank sensor only. The camshaft sensor is used to provide your ICM the best amd most accurate signal for firing your plugs it uses math in place of cam sensor.

show us some pics of your concerns
 

BuickGirlFromMars

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Your vast list of problems makes me hunk you have a grounding issue or PCM a issue not what we are discussing.
 
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