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.

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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
2 / 2
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
111,330 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2002 Buick Rendezvous brakes problems

brakes problem

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2002 Buick Rendezvous Owner Comments

problem #11

Aug 202016


  • 165,000 miles


The vehicle was running for 45 minutes on two-lane paved country roads. I drove the first 15 minutes, with one of my sons driving the other 30 minutes while I was a front seat passenger. We pulled into a parking lot and switched drivers so another son could begin a driving lesson with me. When he began to back out of the parking space he said that the brakes did not feel right and noticed what I thought was steam coming from under the hood. I told him to pull back into the parking space and release the hood so I could check for an overheating engine, even though there were no warning lights on the dashboard and the temperature gauge was in the center of the visible range. When I opened the hood I saw a six-inch wide area of flames to the right of the alternator. I told my sons to get out of the vehicle and asked one of them to call 911 on his cellphone and the other to go to the nearest building, about 75 yards away, and look for a fire extinguisher. In the meantime, I opened the rear vehicle hatch to look for something I could use to put out the fire. Finding nothing useful, I ran to the building my first son had approached for a fire extinguisher and found him inside the outer door of a locked lobby area. We both ran to the next building about 100 yards away where we located a fire extinguisher and returned to the vehicle. I estimate this took less than five minutes. When we returned to the vehicle the flames were about twelve inches wide, still only to the right of the alternator. I was able to quickly put out the fire, but had to aim much deeper into the engine compartment than the visible flame area to stop all flames. When the dealer later checked the vehicle I was told it appeared that a ruptured brake line had sprayed brake fluid on the exhaust manifold and started the fire. There had been no prior leaks or brake issues observed.

- Omaha, NE, USA

problem #10

Jul 152016


  • 15,500 miles
When driving the Buick Rendezvous 2002 home the brakes began to not respond. After arriving home and driving down our driveway, the SUV had smoke coming out of the engine. The Buick Rendezvous was turned off but continued to expelled large amounts of smoke under the engine area. Within 5 minutes the engine area caught on fire. The bozrah fire department was called and by the time they arrived within 15 minutes or so the entire vehicle was on fire.

- Bozrah, CT, USA

problem #9

Sep 072015


  • 117,000 miles
My all wheel drive & anti- lock brakes have gone out. This could prove very dangerous because we live in an area of very harsh winters

- Helmville, MT, USA

problem #8

Mar 202015


  • 108,784 miles


My 2002 Rendezvous almost had a crash because of instant brake failure due to a rapture of the original brake-line. I had the brake line repaired immediately and was told all my original brake lines are corroded and need to be replaced. I contacted GM with this issue, got a case number [xxx], and was told by [xxx]( the highest ranked resolution officer ) GM does not consider this a latent defect issue and will not correct the brake line problem. Information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Cocoa Beach , FL, USA

problem #7

Oct 232014

Rendezvous 6-cyl

  • 155,000 miles
Car stopped in front of me, was room to stop in time, however ABS system kicked in & prevented vehicle from stopping - it only slowed it down. Road was clear & dry, no need for ABS brakes. Brake pads & rear rotors were less than 3 weeks old & front tires were only 3 days old at time of accident. Tested brakes by removing ABS fuse & car stops great - fault in ABS system. Also, air bags did not deploy, but air bag warning light on dash came on solid red & stays on at all times now. Accident was caused by ABS system improper setup or manufacturer.

- Detroit, MI, USA

problem #6

Dec 092013

Rendezvous 6-cyl

  • 130,000 miles
We bought the car from a used dealership in Oct. 2013. Just over a month later we are having problems with the vehicle. The light came on, the dash saying ABS disabled. As this comes if you are slowing down you literally have to pump the brake to stop. This is scary especially when you are trying to come to a stop behind someone and you are not sure if you are going to have enough distance to come to a complete stop before hitting the car in front of you. This light likes to come on while we are driving roughly 65 on the interstate as well, not really effecting driving just stopping. We have already paid to have it fixed in December of 2013 was told it was a bad ABS sensor on the front wheel. Well here we are only a few month later and its happening all over again. We figured we would look into recalls before we go and pay to have it fixed again because it's looking like it's going to be a recurring problem.

- Taftville, CT, USA

problem #5

Mar 112011

Rendezvous 6-cyl

  • 90,000 miles


1st occasion (3/11/11): I was driving East bound on a freeway, in the right lane, and at a speed of approximately 45 miles per hour. I also had my two young boys (ages 4 and 7) in the car with me. I had to brake suddenly when traffic backed up unexpectedly and it was at that moment my brakes failed and I had to veer off the right shoulder and up onto the embankment and fortunately did not crash into another car. I had minimal brake power. My regular repair shop was about 3 miles away and was able to very slowly drive my car there. The brake line on ABS pump to right wheel had to be replaced. 2nd occasion (2/28/13): I was driving East bound in the right lane of a busy road during rush hour traffic. I was going about 30 miles per hour. I had to brake hard for traffic backed up at an intersection. Again, my brakes failed and fortunately there was enough distance for me stop before hitting the car in front of me. I had minimal brake power. At the intersection I turned right, heading South bound and then was able to safely pull into a parking lot and park my car. This time I had to be towed to my repair shop. The same brake line failed the brake line on the ABS pump to right wheel had to be replaced again.

- Dearborn, MI, USA

problem #4

Nov 272013


  • 70,000 miles
Had battery replaced during routine maintenance. After two days the car would not start battery was dead. After the 3rd battery we took the cat to the dealer. Thet checked everything said it was the battery again!!! so we had it replaced at that time. We also had them fix the ABS for the 3rd time in 5 years. The car was at home two days later would not start! had it checked this time it was a module and then the dash cluster wnet out while they were fixing the car. Still same problems took the car out again this time after GM called us. They kept the car for three weeks, said it was a short in the stereo. Now 1 week later car is dead again!!!!!

- Mansfield, OH, USA

problem #3

Jan 032012


  • 110,345 miles
Got ABS & tcs lights and either "traction system active" or "service traction system". two dtc codes C0036 & C0245. Ck'd left wheel sensor per Buick service manuals by disconnecting connector at wheel hub & ck'd ok. No problem again for more than a year. Recently got same lights abt & tcs and master light (ck traction system). Also, concurrent got a thumping sound from left front of vehicle over bumps & when applying brakes. Also, when turning left/right the ABS pump would turn on (felt thru steering wheel). Scan tool confirmed left wheel solenoid activated during test drive. Ck'd the front wheel sensors ac voltage out put per Buick service manuals & found left wheel sensor output at 150 mvac and right wheel sensor at 120mvac for "approx" same wheel speed; spec is 100mvac when "spinning wheel" (no speed of wheel in spec!). other sensor cks (open, shorts to ground, short to voltage, shorted together) all ok. During long trip (400miles) problem (ABS, tcs, etc) lights never came on. Problems that occurred during local/short trips totally went away during long trip"??? sooooo what to do??? plan to change left front wheel hub as thumping in front end during braking (bearings") hasn't gone away.

- Milford, DE, USA

problem #2

Aug 172012

Rendezvous 6-cyl

  • 165,000 miles
Note: "service traction system soon" "anti-lock", and the "traction" lights lights began to come on, then off. Ocassionally, there would be a vibration on the brake pedal when the brakes were applied. I had my son-in-law drive it but none of these things occured. Nest time I was driving all these lights came on then off and the brakes made the vibation. I drove it to the garage where I buy my tires and where they do service vehecles and asked them to check out all these problems. He drove it around the blocks but no lights came on nor did the brakes vibrate. He pulled a wheel but could not find anything wrong. A few days later the lights came on again and when I applied the brakes, the brakes would not stop the car and caused me to rear-end the car ahead who was stopped at the red light. My SUV was totalled but thankfully there were no injuries but after my problem, I discovered a forum on line and there are blogs describing the ABS, traction system problem in the Buick SUV so why did GM fail to recall these vehicles" I wonder if there have been any major injuries or even deaths as the result of the brakes failing"

- Lady Lake, FL, USA

problem #1

Jul 302010


  • 98,000 miles
The contact owns a 2002 Buick Rendezvous. The contact was driving 35 mph when the anti theft warning light illuminated. The contact also stated that a grinding noise emitted from the vehicle after the brakes were depressed. The vehicle was taken to a local repair shop. The manufacturer was not notified. The vehicle was not repaired and the VIN was unknown. The failure mileage was 98,000 and the current mileage was 102,000.

- Olean, NY, USA

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