Huge win for car owners! All TSBs to be made public. The Center for Auto Safety just made the NHTSA (US Government) make public the full text of all TSBs from now on. They are the same organization that has petitioned the NHTSA & filed lawsuits to protect car owners over exploding gas tanks & other major safety issues. Whenever you drive in your car, you are safer thanks in part to a lot of work over the years by this small but very effective consumer advocacy group.

Please take a moment & say thank you by donating $5 or whatever you can to the Center for Auto Safety.


really awful
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
30,572 miles
Total Complaints:
1 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. rusted brake lines and rotors replaced (1 reports)
1999 Buick Regal brakes problems

brakes problem

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1999 Buick Regal Owner Comments

problem #1

Nov 012003

(reported on)

Regal LS

  • 30,572 miles


My wifeís 99 Buick Regal, with less than 31,000 miles, bought new 12/99, suddenly experienced a partial brake failure during the first week of September. Fortunately, when the brake pedal almost went to the floor and the brake warning light came on, she was traveling on our rural road, rather than the Interstate or heavy city traffic.

Investigation revealed brake fluid was leaking slowly through a rusted out metal brake line resulting in the master cylinder reservoir to drop to a dangerously low level. Further examination revealed other severely rusted (but not leaking) brake lines plus severely pitted, corroded and rusted rear brake rotors.

Buick was contacted prior to having the repairs undertaken (request # 1-137192830). Despite numerous communications with Buickís Special Policy Assistance Program, Buick Customer Services, and the local and servicing GM dealer, there was not only no assistance forthcoming, but no interest nor any concern was expressed that there might be a safety issue here. I have been politely told, in so many words, to go away or we are not interested - by everyone in Buick (most of which has been documented).

All repairs were completed by a private repair center. They replaced the rusted & leaking brake lines, rear rotors & brake pads for a total cost of $412.31. All replaced parts were given to me at my request. I have photos of same.

A filed a complaint with the NHTSA (ODI # 10037573) and the BBB Auto Line (Claim # CC1 BUK0353370). However Buick and the BBB informed me I had no recourse with them because the car is out of warranty.

Bottom Line: OK, I take a $412 loss, that is no longer the issue. What is the issue (and now incredulous) is Buick has refused, despite my requests, to even examine these prematurely rusted brake lines and rotors to see if there is any potential safety issue that may cause an unexpected and sudden brake failure. They are simply not interested.

A couple of observations:

  1. The body of the car is guaranteed against rust through for 6 years. You would think the metal brake lines would last as long, in fact you would think such a critical safety component was made of stainless steel or similar material to last the life of the car.

  2. The rear rotors on my 2000 GMC truck also rusted but that was discovered while under warranty and the dealer replaced them without question.

  3. We are not casual GM customers, I have owned many fine and dependable GM vehicles during the past 40 years and we continue to be a GM family. Recent family purchases include 4 new GM vehicles since 1998 and a used 1999 Buick LaSabre Limited. I surely donít feel like I was treated as a loyal customer.

I believe GM/Buick needs to explain why critical braking components deteriorate so rapidly. But no one is listening in Buick; they wonít even take the time to examine the parts. Are there other Buicks or GM cars out there with rusting brake lines that could fail suddenly? I hope the ghost of Harley Earl is listening.

- , Clarks Summit, Pa, USA

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