Intake Manifold Gasket Leak

1999 Pontiac Grand Am (Page 1 of 2)

This problem may be covered under warranty. Ask your Pontiac dealer. Seal Of Avoid Like The Plague


pretty bad
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
108,093 miles
Total Complaints:
32 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. not sure (15 reports)
  2. replace intake manifold gasket (7 reports)
  3. get rid of the car asap (5 reports)
  4. class action lawsuit (3 reports)
  5. manual clean (1 reports)
  6. use fel-pro perma dry metal intake gasket set (1 reports)
1999 Pontiac Grand Am cooling system problems

cooling system problem

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1999 Pontiac Grand Am Owner Comments (Page 1 of 2)

problem #32

Dec 102010

Grand Am V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 60,000 miles


I bought this car from a private party seller in 2010. I had it checked out by a mechanic and was told it just need a new water pump and otherwise it was a great car. Boy was he wrong. 2 water pumps, gasket heads, fuel pump, coolant hoses all needed to be replaced within 3 months of buying it. I couldn't even drive the darn thing the first entire year I owned it. I was just lucky my father is a mechanic who was willing to fix it all for me. Would've cost me over half of what I paid for it to go to a shop to have it all fixed. 2015 comes along, fuel lines and brake fluid lines completely rusted out and needed to be replaced. JUST got it back to passable driving condition this month (6,2017) but it's still a POS. NEVER BUY PONTIAC. It's just an unnecessary headache. All the money I've dumped into fixing this thing could've bought me a newer, better car.

- , Minneapolis, US

problem #31

Nov 052014

Grand Am GT V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 139,800 miles


Damn 'grinch'. That was his nickname, he was green and took ALL my money. It's as if the car sensed when I would actually have some funds (which is rare). From the dreaded year of 2012 in March, to November of last year (2014) he was the WORST piece of crap I ever owned. I now have another used car with even more miles and she is AWESOME compared to that thing!

The first incident was the intakes going up. It happened with EVERY one of these Grand Am's apparently. Years onward I must have easily spent over 2k fixing stuff, mostly coolant related.

On the day I got this other car, the Grinch literally lost all coolant in the dealership parking lot and overheated! And the day BEFORE I had spent another $300 fixing something coolant related!!!

DO NOT BUY A GRAND AM. There are plenty on the road still, which surprised me and I have pity for anyone driving one.

It was THE most stressful thing to own this car. Ugh.

- , taneytown, MD, USA

problem #30

Oct 032004

Grand Am GT 3.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 98,000 miles

my sister bought car new in 1999 almost 20,000 plus dollars nice car good looking. then warrenty expired welcome to the nightmare. this is the fourth time for this problem who ever designed the motor im sure he, she, they will never confess how they got the job must have been on there knees for the whole interveiw. this is why more americans buying foreign. no pride in your work these days. the old timers who developed the old small and big blocks 327,302,350.396,427,454 and so on knew their sh*t. they're still here and will be lot longer than the junk being made today.

- , Victorville, CA, USA

problem #29

Sep 192011

Grand Am 2.2L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 85,000 miles


This car truly sucks a*! The only positive thing about this car is the fact that the ac blows miraculously and is super chilly on 1. However, everything else is terrible, the coolant light turns off and on at random, power windows have gone to hell, power seats work at random. And can anyone tell me why the manifold was made of plastic to begin with, that's moronic, especially with the engine overheating all the dmn time?! I'm really hurt by gm and I want to make sure I am a part of the class action lawsuit!

- , Orlando, FL, US

problem #28

Feb 222010

Grand Am SES 3.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 130,000 miles

Well, obviously the 1999-2005 Grand Am's have huge intake manifold gasket problems. I found out a tad too late, and turned out bought the car with the gasket leaking, but didn't have the money to fix it. Just had to constantly watch the coolant level. Finally right before a big snow storm (offf course!) it completely blew out 20 miles from home. All I could hear was coolant rushing out the side and splashing on the ground. Had to have it towed home, and brought it luckily to an amazing repair shop. Talked to the mechanic, told him exactly what was wrong and asked if he minded if I went out and bought my own replacement parts. No problem, so BE SURE if you are going to fix it to buy your own intake manifold gasket and that it is NOT the plastic one GM recommends. It NEEDS to be metal. Got it replaced over a year ago and refuse to put DexCool back into it. Just regular coolant works fine (regardless of what the manual says) and is much less corrosive on the engine. So consult with a good mechanic, and be sure to get the right parts, and good ones. Ever since I replaced the intake manifold the engine has run like a dream. Much better car now!

- , Mooresville, NC, USA

problem #27

Oct 262009

Grand Am V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 155,000 miles

So i went to get my car check out at one of our firestones in town. I had they make sure everything was okay for me to drive it up to Glendale Heights, IL by Chicago. When i got it back he said it would be in my best interest not to because my car was leaking coolant due to the intake. When i bought my car in the summer of 2008 the person wouldn't lower the price due to putting a new intake on it a few months before. So my father and i didn't think it was that. A few friends of mine go to UTI and thought that it was wierd that it was leaking and it could be the water pump, but then noticed the pool of coolant on the block. My car has never over heated just stayed at the normal temp and thats the only problem i have ever had with it.. Will it be worth it to change the intake?

- , Clinton, IA, USA

problem #26

Mar 022010

Grand Am GT 3.4L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 114,000 miles


Alright so I have visited this site many times specifically for my "1999 Pontiac Grand Am"... I bought my car at 89,000 miles for roughly $4,000--Since then my problems I have had that occurred in order are as follows: 1. passenger side window regulator breaks (including glass window itself) 2. break pads wear out followed by (2) front wheel rotors 3. driver side window regulator BEGINS to show some defects (won't go down; struggles to go back up)...I have stopped attempting to use it. Meaning anytime I have to go to the ATM or drive thru of some sort, I am opening my door. Lol 4. Alternator dies...on the night...enough said. Thankfully I am still alive. 5. Engine coolant light begins to cut on and off. Find out there is a leak. Shocking I know.

So that brings me to now. I have probable equaled my purchase price for the car in repairs alone. Never will I buy GM again. I hope one day no one will be driving one of these cars. It's sad how many ppl have had the same exact problems.

- , Toledo, OH, USA

problem #25

Dec 012009

Grand Am SE 3.4L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 124,000 miles

Having the same problem with my Grand Am......again. I am looking into using the perma-dry metal gaskets, but since this is the 2nd occurence I am willing to try anything to make this problem go away permanently. Any suggestions?

- , Muskego, WI, USA

problem #24

Dec 212008

Grand Am 3.4L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 168,000 miles

This business is supposedly a known issue related to the breaking down of the material used to make the gasket. The required repair as per my local mechanic is to replace the intake + head gasket: Parts etc required:

- head gasket - intake gasket - antifreeze (bulk) - oil - oil filter - spark plugs - head bolts - thermostat - p/s power steering fluid

What the... !!

Apparently GM is has been aware of this issue and there has been mention of a class action law suit : see link ->

"This is absolutely not normal wear and tear," said Kirk Robinson, an independent mechanic who worked as a GM service technician several years ago. He also hosts a call-in cable TV show in Toronto, called "Auto Talk".

- , Niagara Falls, ON, Canada

problem #23

Apr 012009

Grand Am ES 3.4L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 85,000 miles

Ok this is my wifes piece of sh*t car we bought when it had 30,000 miles on it back in 2001, was a good car for about a year. started leaking antifreeze from the intake gasket & the alternator went out. I fixed the leak in like 2003 or so by myself & boy what a job that was, have to tear the whole top of the engine down! Thanks Pontiac, ya f*ckin assholes!

Now here we are in 2009 & the same leake is there again & has been for over a year now with 89,000 miles on it, only now the leak is very bad & you have to fill the res. tank before you go anywhere & it will all leak out after a 20 mile drive. The cap on the res. tank is a total piece of sh*t that cross threseds when you try to put it on & has to be practically pried off. This car is on it's 3rd alternator & the gas gauge stopped working a couple years ago, I fixed that too, the wiper on the sending unit wears out on ALL these older GM vehicles including the trucks, the only way to fix it is to get a new fuel pump or a sending unit part form the dealed for like 150.00 bucks! A new fuel pump will run you over $200.00. Anyway so I have been putting off replacing this gasket again but I have no choice now if she wants to use the car like a normal person should. I hate this damn car! There are so many of these Grand AM junkers on the road & I feel sorry for the people that own them. Why oh why has GM f*cked so many people with this intake gasket problem & done nothing about it? I f you EVER have to replcae your serpentine belt you should ALWAYS check the idler pulleys for lubrication, the plastic sh*tty one on the tensioner melted idling in the driveway due to dyring up of the bearing, & shreaded the belt! To the shadetree mechanic out there in repairland USA: You can always lubricate ANY idler pulley on nearly ANY vehicle in your garage. Just pull off the seal with a pick or sharp instrument & you usulally won't damage it & force some grease into the bearing & spin it then replace the seal, you can usually push it back on with your fingers & if not then use a socket or other smooth edge tool slightly smaller that the diameter of the seal to tap it back into place, this wiil save you a lot of moey, time & headache. Hey GM: Your 3.4L V6 engine SUCKS ASS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

- , Casper, WY, USA

problem #22

Jul 312008

Grand Am SE 3.4L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 109,000 miles


So yah, as soon as I got one problem fixed, I had this same intake gasket leak, just like everyone else. Luckily I knew it was coming because I had just started using this site a couple of months previous to my problem. Get rid of your 199 Grand AMs ASAP! I'm going to get myself a new car now that my transmission is slipping more and more now too.

- , South San Francisco, CA, USA

problem #21

May 012009

Grand Am GT 3.4L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 113,000 miles

Not really here to rant and rave about the problem but rather to offer a possible solution to the lower intake gasket failure problem. If you have the dealer do the repair, they are going to use the same plastic gaskets that originally came on the engine, and if you require that they use a different part (gasket) then they most likely will not warranty the job, however the long term fix is to replace the OEM plastic gaskets with Fel-Pro perma-dry metal gaskets (which have rubber inserts for the galleys). Along with this modification you will NOT want to use the DEX-COOL orange coolant when refilling the cooling system.(it is alleged to have a corrosive effect on sealing components of the cooling system) ///

Now to the problem of the window guides breaking, yes in deed they do, and while I haven't seen the fix in a store in package form, the answer is to fashion two metal retainer brackets to fit on the inside and outside of the plastic window guides, I've got'em on my Grand Am and have had no problem since installing them(over a year now).

- , Norfolk, VA, USA

problem #20

Mar 012009

Grand Am GT 3.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 130,000 miles

The intake is really a pain in the ass. I wish I could make GM go bankrupt. I've replaced the whole upper and lower intake and spent so much money that I could scream, and its still not 100%. Listening to people around me about American cars being so good, I should have not listened to them and stuck with foreign cars. They actually take time to perfect their defects in their products. The Grand Am GT's engine must have been designed when the engineers came back from a club drunk.

I hope a class action lawsuit will be filed so they can reimburse me for all the money I have spent, which is enough to purchase a whole other car. Please keep me informed on the class action lawsuit.

- , Brownsville, TN, US

problem #19

Feb 102009

Grand Am GT 3.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 103,000 miles

hAD TO REPLACE THE head gasket last year and then today the car spits out the coolant. I've been told the intake gasket has a leak. There appears to be a problem that GM is aware of but refuses to address it. If anyone knows how to get their attention, please speak up

- , Hollywood, FL, US

problem #18

Dec 062006

Grand Am SE 3.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 100,000 miles

There is a class action law suit for this exact problem with Pontiac Grand Ams and a few other GM cars. The web site to check out is

Good luck, and if you qualify, get your claim in by October 27th, 2008

- , Lewiston, ME, USA

problem #17

Mar 102008

Grand Am SE 3.2L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 112,000 miles

After we replaced the alternator, battery, brakes and many window brackets I thought the problems were over! WRONG!! on so many levels. I had to replace the intake manifold gasket and where did my heat go? I lost my heater in the car! Now on top of everything else, I had to replace the ignition switch and change keys for it because the DAMN thing wouldn't turn over. Left me stranded again! This is getting OLD FAST! Then the damn car started to cut out when I was at a light and not wanting to start. This car is the worst car I have owned besides the Freakin' Buick Century. I want to get rid of it, husband doesn't want to. Any suggestions?

- , Leavittsburg, OH, USA

problem #16

Aug 052008

Grand Am GT 3.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 72,000 miles

Im 26 yrs old, ive owned 3 cars...all gm, the last 2 i had lasted 130,000 miles + worth the money, now im screwed..i bought a grand am intake gasket goes out. find out that im not the only gm customer service. apparently the gasket is too thin and is*t. so i call and figure a highly known manufacturer such as gm would b more than happy to help their loyal customers...but no..i got a load of BS, pretty much "yes we understand theres been problems w/ the gaskets goin out...sorry and good luck." Funny thing is i worked for a company that supplied parts directly to GM. and when we sent 1 part out of millions that didnt look just right...a firm ass chewing phone call w/ more cursing then u could possibly imagine...and lasted all of 10 min followed by a hang up. We'd end up sending a group of people (paid for by the company i worked for..not GM) go to the Gm plant take an ass chewing for several days by the GM engineers, management..treated like retards and eventually told to leave when we proved there was nothing wrong w/ the part..(btw if any of u read this....go to hell). and now i sit here...with my busted ass car...and gm wont do a damn thing to fix there screw up...i no longer work for that company but its almost irony...i bought a gm car..because i saw there determination to get it right.....and now....they don't give a sh*t when its costin there customer $$$ now i know..there all assholes who don't give a damn about their customers....wave..goodbye buyin a Ford from now on.

- , Hannibal, MO, USA

problem #15

May 292008

Grand Am GT 3.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 145,000 miles

this seems to be a common problem. there is a class action lawsuit on many gm cars it is dexcool settlement .com. however it has to done with in 7 yrs or 150000 miles. so doesn't do me any good. this has been a pretty horrible car. whats a fair price to replace the lower intake manifold gasket?

- , Glendale, CA, USA

problem #14

Jun 012006

Grand Am SE

  • Automatic transmission
  • 30,000 miles

This is recall worthy in most people eyes, because i've heard this happens a lot and is a recurring problem. Basically it overheated and needed a new intake manifold, and they replaced it but periodically it keeps leaking coolant even though I already fixed it. To be fair I haven't really paid much attention to it since the second time I fixed it and it hasn't overheated even though I bet one day it might just explode on me. I think the only solution is to sell it to someone or drive it to the junkyard and get a reliable (non GM) made car.

- , North Hollywood, CA, USA

problem #13

Feb 142008

Grand Am SE V6 3.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 115,000 miles

Over a month ago, my car overheated out of nowhere. At first, I was told it was simply the thermostat so I had it replaced. Well the idiots who replaced it used the wrong part and installed it upside down so I had MY mechanic do it the right way. This still didn't solve the problem however, and I have wasted countless hours and days for the last month of my life trying to get the problem fixed. The intake gasket has been replaced, but after seeing this site, I realize it will just go again. Ive come to the conclusion that its better for me to just get rid of the car because it become a huge pain in my ass and is no longer worth my time or money. Absolutely an item that should be a GM recall, but I won't count on that ever happening. A terrible car that I never should have bought in the first place. I will never EVER buy from GM again.

- , Buffalo, NewYo Rk, USA

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