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pretty bad
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
84,711 miles
Total Complaints:
48 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. replace intake manifold gasket (32 reports)
  2. not sure (6 reports)
  3. re-imbursement of expense due to GM and Dex-cool Corp. deals (4 reports)
  4. gm should replace all models with these problems (2 reports)
  5. replaced engine with used one (2 reports)
  6. replaced head gasket n intake gasket (1 reports)
2001 Pontiac Grand Am cooling system problems

cooling system problem

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2001 Pontiac Grand Am Owner Comments (Page 1 of 3)

problem #48

Jan 122013

Grand Am GT 3.4L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 164,000 miles


I bought this car a month ago for my gf. It ran great when we looked at it but within a week the heat started blowing cold on an off. Then the low coolant light came on so I topped it off. Within a couple days low coolant light came on again and started blowing cold air again. That day it started running a little hot but it would go up and down right above half way. Next day running very hot, not even drivable so I replaced the cheapest things first. Water pump, thermostat and radiator cap. Went to bleed the cooling system spent and hour trying to get the air out but it just kept coming and coming. So now I'm guessing its the intake manifold gasket, some how air is being forced into the coolant system. Its losing coolant but its not leaking on the ground, I checked the oil and it looks fine, no coolant in it. if anyone has any suggestions any help would be appreciated.

Update from Feb 10, 2013: I Replaced the lower intake manifold gaskets today, cost me $50 bucks for the gaskets and 6 hrs worth of labor but car is now fixed. its was a pain to do, a couple bolts were almost impossible to get to.

- , Hamilton, OH, USA

problem #47

Nov 012012

Grand Am GT 3.20L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 55,000 miles

No comments because I wouldn't say nothing that has not been said from all complainers before.

- , Redwood City, CA, USA

problem #46

Jun 032011

Grand Am SE 3.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 62,000 miles

first time 26,000 miles second time 62,000 miles...both times lower intake gasket....1200 dollars to fix..each time...i hate this car and gm should be held responsable for defective product !

- , Olanta, PA, USA

problem #45

Feb 222011

Grand Am SE V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 136,000 miles


bought a 2001 Pontiac GrandAm Se used in 2007. Car started out with electrical problems as soon as I got it home , security light will come on , signals not working sunroof will sometimes open , some of thes were recalls such as signal problems and supposedly repaired by dealer, signals would not work and all you hear was clivcking coming from dashboard where radio is, dealer replaced part flsaher unit,but then after about a yr it started agian and still is , dealer refuses to fix even though it is same aprt that was recalled is bad again, To make matters worse the electrical windows, all except the passnger rear stoped working with regulators all going bad about the same time and then after about 75,000-80,000 coolant light started coming on at times and coolant level will be down having to add coolant, After a while car startted running rough, told tuneup needed , did tuneup cost $300.00 and right after then had to add coolant every day since light constantly was on , .A few times added and right away coolant level went down righy before my eyes, Took car back to mechanic since still running rough and diagnosed with cracked intake gasket , ,Replaced at cost of 900.00 but had to take car back almost every other day,

Finally thought car was fixed and when son driving it ,2 loud pops came from car and once again back at mechanic via tow, Once again gasket was culprit , this time coolant mixed with oil, DEXCOOL,again gasket replaced, coolant drained to reg 50/50 for all makes, Took car home and in a week back at mechnic since once aggain blew gasket while driving, towed back and this time car fialedec engine test, so now new motor has to be put in (used) at cost of 2000.00, Finally told pontiac's were well known for this issue and that Manufacturer knows about it but never recalled,Never agin will I buy Pontiac and told all my friends and they will not but either, Pontiac should step up and do what is right, fix them

- , Lehigh Acres, FL, USA

problem #44

Feb 012009

Grand Am GT 3.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 144,000 miles

Happened to me at a time in my life when I could not afford to buy a new car, so I walked 2.5 miles to/from work every day until I could afford to purchase a new car. I did not buy a GM as I had continuous problems with the 2001 Pontiac almost immediately after the warranty expired. I bought a new 2010 Mazda 3 in Sept 2009 and will probably never buy a GM again...or a Ford for that matter. Worst Car I've ever owned/horrible service from dealership.

- , Ventnor, NJ, USA

problem #43

Jan 062010

Grand Am V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 92,000 miles

Car has numerous problems with faulty plastic interior parts failure, sunroof malfunction, windows (electric) failed, trunk tensioner fail twice , etc etd.

- , Oxnard, CA, USA

problem #42

Oct 312009

Grand Am SE 3.4L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 99,964 miles


I bought this car about 3 yrs ago, great car for our little starter family! We were 20 yrs old didn't know a whole lot about cars but had owned a 1991 grand am in the past and loved it! So we got another one. BIGGEST mistake EVER!! My husband is in the U.S. Navy and we were driving home (Indiana) from Florida for leave before reporting to our next station. We had gone about 500 miles and the car was great!!! Until we stopped for a break, we got back on the highway and the gage was reading HOT, we pulled over and thought maybe we should check the coolant, IT WAS EMPTY! We walked to the nearest gas station and got some. The engine cooled down so we went on, about 5 miles later it was back to HOT again. By now its 6:30 at night, dark, cold and raining. Did i forget to mention we had our 4 yrs old son and 3 yrs old 110lbs dog with us?? Yea!! We poured water bottles full of water into the coolant tank to try to just get to the nearest town, stopping every 2 to 3 miles. We got the the town stayed over night, replaced a water pump, thermostat, a relay (the fans went out too) the battery (that died and couldn't even jump it) 450 bucks later, after all that it seemed fine. Headed toward the highway, WENT BACK TO HOT!!! SO we ended up towing the car the rest of the way home. 773 bucks just for the tow. Come to find out the intake gasket cracked then by pouring cold water into the hot engine we cracked it!!! :( We still own on it and will NEVER by GM again!!!!!!!

- , Fort Wayne, IN, USA

problem #41

Dec 072009

Grand Am SE V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 121,000 miles

Well my husband and I bought this car in February 09 from a Buy Here Pay Here type car lot. I knew since we bought it from a place like this it will likely have som problems down the road. The first signs of a problem started in August when the car began to slowly leak coolant from the front passenger side of the car. My hubby being the procrastinator that he is decided that it should be ok for a few days when he could look at it on the weekend. Well the weekend came and went and he didnt fix it or even look at it. Monday I start driving to work and the temp gauge rose to 250 degrees when it started to steam half way to work. I managed to make it to the gas station to let it cool off. My coworker came and got me so I could make it to work. I went back on lunch and filled the resivoir with coolant and drove it to work a few miles up the road, it seemed to be ok at that point. A few weeks later the water pump was leaking coolant profusly.

My husband finally got off his butt and replaced that. For a while there it wasnt having any real issues until a few weeks ago when it started overheating and the heater kept going out. I took my daughter to school today and it is a bone chilling 20 degrees, and the heater wouldnt kick in once. Not to mention the giant anitfreeze puddles that have been left in the driveway at home and at work. I have had to put a gallon of antifreeze into this piece of sh*t every couple of days just so it can leak out all over the freaking place! I noticed that there was antifreeze on the engine below where the hose that attaches to the engine is. From what I have been reading on here it sounds like the intake gasket. I was hoping it may be a quik fix like the hose had a crack. I am hoping my husband will just let me take it into a shop so i can have it professionally looked and repaired. But if its a $700 or more fix, I might just say fu*k it and git rid of dam thing, but the worst part about this is I still owe about $2k on the stupid thing. I could probably get the $2k but then I wouldnt have a vehicle.

I am hoping to ride this out until tax time so I can just trade it in and get a toyota or mazda. GM can kiss my ass! I say that everyone who has these problems should start a class action law suit and get their money back and a new car from GM. I dont give a rats ass if they are losing money since nobody is buying their pieces of junk! I dont blame them! What pisses me off more is that they got a f*cking bail out from the govt and they cant help the people they screwed over with their cars!

- , Omaha, NE, USA

problem #40

Jan 012004

Grand Am 3.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 49,710 miles

I had same problems as all the rest. low coolant light on, leaks under car, both p/s lines have blown, its pathetic.

- , Edmonton, AB, Canada

problem #39

May 212008

Grand Am SE 3.4L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 123,094 miles

Had the car in several times after repair as not fixed, finally they fixed it N/C. But just this April 2009 found out there is a class action lawsuit regarding this defect and the Dealer repair shop never once mentioned the ongoing problem. Seem shady to me. To bad there is no one you can trust!

- , Keremeos, BC, Canada

problem #38

Mar 022009

Grand Am SE 3.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 112,000 miles


My grand am has been a pain in the butt.Coolant has been disappearing for a while now. After reading this website I fiqured it was the intake manifold gasket. Last time I drove it somewhere, when I went to leave it would not start and can now see coolant on block of engine. Waiting for my dad to come fix it may be a while. GM knows about this problem and chooses to do nothing. The next car I get will be foreign. That is sad to say.

- , Griffin, GA, USA

problem #37

Jun 012006

Grand Am GT1 3.4L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 55,000 miles

Needless to say, this was the first of MANY issues with my car. I purchased it from my parents with 33k on the odometer (about four years old) for trade in value of what the car was worth. I thought that I couldn't go wrong as my current ride was an 99' Altima SE with 110k miles. For $4k, I moved up two model years and 75k miles less. My parents don't know the half of the problems I have had with this car...should of kept the Altima (I thought it was going to start nickel and diming me). The Altima did not go into the shop for anything ever (we bought it new) other than normal maintenance. I have typically leaned towards American cars (mostly GM) in the past but now I will be rethinking my future purchases. And yes, I have encountered just about every problem known to this car (two pass lock sensors, ABS wheel sensor, catalytic converter, heater fan switch, turn signal indicator, and another leaking intake manifold at about 95k miles). GM didn't want to do anything either.

- , Columbia City, IN, USA

problem #36

Dec 012008

Grand Am GT V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 95,000 miles

Just another one of the people who have to deal with this same problem. Luckily I have a really cool brother in-law who is willing to fix it for me. If not I really couldn't afford to have it repaired for the estimated $700. What is the deal with the Dex-cool anyway? I see a couple people have listed that they re-filled with normal anti-freeze after replacing the gaskets. Is that really ok to do?

- , Kenosha, WI, USA

problem #35

Oct 152006

(reported on)

Grand Am GT

  • 69,000 miles

i like the car, looks good, handles well, good gas mileage. unfortunately i wont buy American again. GM should know they have a problem with the dexcool and the gaskets. they need to stand behind their products a little better. my Pontiac ends up in the shop every 10,000 miles. i am ready to add a third Toyota to my car family, maybe my mechanic will be able to finally take a vacation!

- , Toms Brook, VA, USA

problem #34

Apr 252007

(reported on)

Grand Am GT 3.4L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 96,934 miles

well guys i got screwed too , i had this car and its had nothing but problems , if any one wants to join up and sue this company for not telling us that its products are useless then lets do it , my head gasket went and at first it was only meant to cost 1500 then they rang up and suggested a whole load of other jobs that they recommend , so basically if you don't do this your not covered in warranty down the road , in other words i couldn't sit down for a week after i got #$@$ in the bum of gm , never buying off them again and i will never recommend a gm grand am gt to any one , rubbish engines made cheap sold for too much , and gm dealers keep inop to them selfs and the service manager didn't know what was going on . peace out

- , Saskatoon, Saskatchewen, Canada

problem #33

Jun 232004

Grand Am GT

  • Automatic transmission
  • 50,000 miles

Noticed that the engine coolant was starting to drop. Added coolant and could not find leak. Had a dealership look at and intake manifold was leaking. This was covered under extended warranty. Still was a pain in the butt and took a week to fix. Warranty didn't cover the oil change that had to be done since coolant leaked into the engine. Engine still running and no other problems except the pass lock.

- , Colby, KS, USA

problem #32

Mar 042008

Grand Am V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 83,000 miles

Add me to the ever-growing list of Grand Ams leaking coolant. My temperature gauge would quit working for a day or two and then resume working. Then the Service Engine Soon light came on. This is after I had the car in the shop for a $300 fix to repair the heater fan. And that was after the windshield fluid reservoir and turning signal connections were repaired ($250). I once heard that 75,000 miles was the limit for Grand Ams, but I did not take the comment seriously. $1500 over a 6-month period has convinced me otherwise. PLUS my front tires leak air, even though the tire shop could find nothing wrong with the tires themselves. I was told the rims somehow attract debris and gradually the dirt wedges a space, which allows air to leak. I only drive an average of 12,000 a year - that's hardly enough to take a toll on the car's engine, in my opinion.

- , Wooster, OH, USA

problem #31

Jan 282008

Grand Am GT 3.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 84,310 miles

click to see larger images

leaking coolant, cracked intake manifold gasket leaking coolant, cracked intake manifold gasket leaking coolant, cracked intake manifold gasket leaking coolant, cracked intake manifold gasket

Intake Gaskets were leaking Anti-Freeze, a common problem with this motor due to the Dex-Cool GM uses. Anyway I went to change the gaskets and found the coolant passage on the head closest to the firewall on the pass side clogged with this really hard crystal like substance. Thats where the gasket broke. Replaced intake gaskets and seems to be fine now. I went with the new Antifreeze that can be mixed with any color any type instead of the Dex-Cool.

- , Burlington, KY, USA

problem #30

Jun 012007

Grand Am SE 3.2ll V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 92,000 miles

Just Don't Buy A Grand Am. Always something wrong. Now I have a car I don't need and never drive, with currently a small leak. However, I can't sell it. Without the leak, it has a good body, still runs fine. I was offered $3,000 for a car that should be at least $5,000. Everybody knows that the manufacturer screwed up and will not recall to repair. I don't have money to sink into this car and no one else wants to either. No wonder foreign cars are selling so well in the United States. I may become a Honda fan.

- , Fostoria, MI, USA

problem #29

Oct 192007

Grand Am GT 3.4L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 57,916 miles

Unfortunately I made the biggest mistake that a person can make when purchasing a vehicle. I trusted the dealer. The asking price was high but I figured it was worth it considering the low mileage. I drove the car home twenty minutes later after my fathers hundred point inspection he found oil in the radiator. I took it to a shop and the mechanic said that it was most likely the intake manifold gasket. Luckily, the car was still under warranty so I made an appointment with my dealer, drove the two hours and then waited all day till my car was fixed because their insurance does not allow loaner cars. Two weeks later still oil in the radiator. My dealer refused to give me my work orders( which is unlawful) and said that the car was fixed. I demanded that he drain and refill my radiator. This time I left the car there for two weeks. Yes It took them two weeks to do this one simple task. He gave me an extended warranty for intake manifold and head gaskets because he was positive that this was not the problem. I got the car back and surprise surprise their was still oil in the radiator. I told my dealer that he was an incompetent idiot and the car was not fixed, and of course he was flabbergasted. At this point I began to wonder if their really was anything wrong with my car. I took it to my own mechanic who diagnosed that why their was still oil in my radiator was because it was never drained and refilled by my dealer. So at this point I wanted to shove the car where the sun doesn't shine. I paid to have it done properly and guess what it is fixed. For now that is, but their is a larger issue here that thankfully because of this site I know that its not just the car. It's the coolant. The 50/50 Dex cool that is recommended by GM is currently eating away at my car and the same problem will occur again in the future. GM is full aware of what this coolant is doing. So why do they continue to use and approve of it? Because they manufacture it. So if you currently use this coolant, get it out of your vehicle now before it causes costly repairs. Or to save thousands of dollars in the long run just pay extra money for a Toyota, Subaru, or Honda. Their is a reason these are not GM made vehicles.

- , Avoca, New York, USA

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