NHTSA — Engine And Engine Cooling: Exhaust System: Manifold/Header/Muffler/Tail Pipe Problems

1998 Buick LeSabre (Page 1 of 3)


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 2
Injuries / Deaths:
2 / 0
Average Mileage:
49,254 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.

1998 Buick LeSabre exhaust system problems

exhaust system problem

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1998 Buick LeSabre Owner Comments (Page 1 of 3)

problem #51

Jan 302008

(reported on)


  • miles


1998 Buick Lesabre with cracked intake manifold. Consumer states that the manufacturer has no intention of sending out a recall for this problem or reimbursing the customers. The consumer stated the manifold was made out of plastic, which caused anti-freeze to mix with the oil.

- Springfield, IL, USA

problem #50

Dec 032007

LeSabre 6-cyl

  • miles
My 1998 Buick Lesabre ltd, 73,943 mi, started to require water to be added to the overflow tank. The car was taken to a GM garage and it was determined that the upper and lower intake manifolds were leaking, causing coolant to enter engine and oil. This repair cost$1200. To correct. Further investigation showed that this is a common problem and GM has turned it's head to the issue. The internet is full of this specific problem.

- York, PA, USA

problem #49

Mar 302006


  • Automatic transmission
  • 75,000 miles
: the contact stated while driving 60mph, the vehicle stalled and the heat indicator gauge dropped to zero. The vehicle was towed to an independent repair shop for inspection. The mechanic determined the plastic intake manifold needed to be replaced.

- Cordova, TN, USA

problem #48

Dec 022005

LeSabre 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 63 miles


Defective manifold gasket. Coolant degrades gasket causing coolant to leak into engine, catalytic converter and exhaust system.

- East Brunswick, NJ, USA

problem #47

Nov 142005

LeSabre 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 58,000 miles
The contact stated the antifreeze was low. He took the vehicle to shop the to have it checked. They found the intake manifold was leaking antifreeze into the engine. This, in turn could have caused the engine to blow up. The intake manifold was replaced. Updated 02/06/06.

- Bedford , OH, USA

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problem #46

Apr 152005

LeSabre 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 54,150 miles
When started vehicle and there was a backfire with a lot O smoke. Care would not start. Took vehicle to Buick garage, and they said it was the intake manifold, and they repaired it.

- New Kensington , PA, USA

problem #45

Nov 102004


  • Automatic transmission
  • 80,000 miles


While driving at approximately 50 mph the plastic manifold burst without warning, causing the engine to lock up. Owner contacted the dealer and the manufacturer, and was told that there was nothing else they could do.

- Burns, TN, USA

problem #44

Apr 232002

LeSabre 6-cyl

  • 23,000 miles
While driving engine light illuminated on the dashboard constantly. Then, engine completely failed. The gaskets had been changed several times. Anti-freeze and oil leaked. Consumer found that it was the intake manifold.

- Little Falls, NJ, USA

problem #43

Sep 032004


  • 57,000 miles
The vehicle failed to start after re-fueling. The engine cranked but wouldn't turn over. The dealership without inspecting the vehicle identified the intake plenum ( manifold) as the problem. There was a small hole which caused the oil to mix in with the water/ anti freeze. This part has been upgraded in the 2002 and later models. The plenum part #FH10095 manifold was replaced.....

- Grass Lake, MI, USA

problem #42

Nov 172004

LeSabre 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
While placing the vehicle in reverse a loud popping noise was heard coming from the rear. Then, vehicle stalled. Consumer was unable to restart vehicle, and had the vehicle towed to the dealer for inspection. Mechanic determined that the intake exhaust manifold system, and a head gasket needed to be replaced.. also, exhaust manifold cover blew off.

- Honolulu, HI, USA

problem #41

Jul 112002

LeSabre 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 88,103 miles


July 11, 2002: We had to have 5 injectors replaced by jordan Oldsmobile-Buick, hot springs, Arkansas. Cost: $709.42. Mileage was 82,260. October 31, 2002: We had to take our car to orr Pontiac, Cadillac, Toyota, hot springs, Arkansas, because the car misfired (or backfired) on us. The work order states: customer states that oil light and temp light came on; car was low on coolant and had to add water, said a lot of white smoke came out of tail pipes and had very bad sulfur smell. Intake leaking, flooding cyl with coolant. replaced : two manifolds, coolant, oil, etc. Cost: $1398.66. Mileage: 88,103. November 15, 2002: Oil gauge goes to red and engine has knock. Diagnosis was internal engine damageI was told that parts of the engine had been made of plastic and this plastic had melted. Complete new engine. Cost: $4174.94. Mileage: 88,821.

- Hot Springs, AR, USA

problem #40

Jan 062003

LeSabre 6-cyl

  • 11,140 miles
While attempting to start the vehicle the consumer heard a load pop then smoke began to fill the cabin of the vehicle. Shortly after the vehicle caught on fire. The consumer requested reimbursement. The problem was due to a leaking manifold.

- Berea, OH, USA

problem #39

Oct 072004

LeSabre 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
While driving, in inclement weather windshield wipers come on and off intermittently. The consumer was able to drive the vehicle to the dealer for inspection, and the mechanic determined that the windshield wiper motor needed replacement. This vehicle was not on a recall and the warranty expired. The plastic intake manifold leaked water without unknowingly and would blow out and ingest all of the water from the radiator and also the overflow into the motor.

- Texas City, TX, USA

problem #38

Sep 192004


  • Automatic transmission
  • 76,787 miles
1998 Buick Lesabre- check engine light went on, stopped at gas station, car would not start after stopping, intake manifold had failed, causing engine coolant to get iinto the engine, because the engine was locked up the starter also broke when trying to restart the car, was stranded 60 miles from home, to get towed and get car fixed cost over $2000 dollars. It seems the intake manifold has a defect.

- Naperville, IL, USA

problem #37

Jan 232004

LeSabre 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 77,522 miles
On January 2004 an independent repair shop replaced the intake manifold at consumer's expense of $1, 1000, five months later, the consumer received NHTSA recall #04V090000 which stated that vehicles equipped with 3800 V6 (L36) engines and certain delphi fuel pressure regulators, the regulators have a much higher than usual rate of fuel leaks. A leak can allow fuel to enter the intake manifold through a vacuum line. The manufacturer indicated to the consumer the recall was the fuel pressure no the intake manifold. However, the mechanic determined that a defective fuel pressure broke the intake manifold. The was attempting to stall while in motion, when the vehicle reached home the vehicle died. The engine turned but did not start. The intake was leaking coolant into cylinders.

- Lawton, OK, USA

problem #36

Aug 242004

LeSabre 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
Consumer was concerned about reimbursement from the manufacturer. Consumer received recall notice 96V116000 concerning intake manifold failure. Consumer had recall repairs done. However, recall repairs failed. Consumer informed the mechanic that this problem occurred more than once, and had not been resolved.

- Saint Joseph, MO, USA

problem #35

Jul 012004

LeSabre 6-cyl

  • miles
While driving vehicle started to lose power. The vehicle gradually lost more power and quit. The consumer was informed that the upper intake manifold was cracked in one of the passages, which required a total replacement of the engine.

- Heyburn, ID, USA

problem #34

Apr 122004

LeSabre 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 63,468 miles
Our 1998 Buick Lesabre limited, April 2004 our upper & lower intake manifold's & gasket were replaced due to a leak and the car only had 62,000 miles on it. This cost us over $2000 the web has hundreds of similar complaints from other GM owners. Upper intake manifold leaked, causing loss of coolant. Vehicle taken to independent repair shop. Oil and oil filter had to be changed, spark plugs were replaced and cylinder's [engine flushed] had to be cleaned out. Also broken starter replaced. My car had to be towed over 110 miles back home at a cost of $ $236.50 [my wife was visiting her mom and had 2 grandchildren with her when car broke down in a remote area, lucky for us she had her cell phone with her and some nice folks at a near by ranch took care of them] my mechanic advised intake manifold leaked, and starter was bad [housing broke] starter housing broke due to trying to start hydro-locked engine. Question: Why is Buick allowed to use a plastic intake manifold? as this is an area that gets very hot. It's obvious, Buick made a big mistake by producing engines with plastic man- ifolds. The intake manifold on the engine is made out of plastic and has the egr tube running through it, causing the plastic to heat up and allow antifreeze to run into the engine. When my mechanic called the local dealership to order parts, the sales clerk told him, "yes we have those parts on hand it happens a lot" also that the upper & lower intakes had been re-designed and that both manifolds need to be replaced as a unit..(contributed by mike & della rico) ps. Also, transmission is now acting up [shudders on take-off at times] I understand that these problems [manifold & transmission] are mainly going on with cars having K in the VIN. Do you have any information on this? thank you

- Paso Robles, CA, USA

problem #33

May 222004


  • 116,000 miles
While pulling out from a stop light the vehicle began to accelerate and suddenly the engine locked and stalled. The vehicle was towed to the consumer's house and it was found that the upper intake manifold was corroded. This problem caused water and anti-freeze to enter the engine, which caused the vehicle to over heat. Please provide any additional information.

- Illiopolis, IL, USA

problem #32

Feb 192004

LeSabre 6-cyl

  • 59,627 miles
Vehicle failed to start when the key was turned in the ignition. Vehicle was towed to a mechanic. Mechanic indicated that the intake manifold degraded around the erg distribution nipple and the fuel pressure regulator diaphram ruptured leaking fuel into the engine through the vacuum hose. This was the same defect as described in the fuel pressure regulator recall 03V473000, but this vehicle's model was not included in the recall although it had the same type of engine.

- Oxford, IN, USA

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