Leaking Coolant, Cracked Intake Manifold Gasket

2001 Pontiac Grand Am (Page 1 of 4)

This problem may be covered under warranty. Ask your Pontiac dealer.

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pretty bad
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
89,850 miles
Total Complaints:
63 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. replace intake manifold gasket (32 reports)
  2. not sure (10 reports)
  3. replace intake manifold gaskets (6 reports)
  4. re-imbursement of expense due to GM and Dex-cool Corp. deals (4 reports)
  5. replace intake manifold (3 reports)
  6. gm should replace all models with these problems (2 reports)
2001 Pontiac Grand Am engine problems

engine problem

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2001 Pontiac Grand Am Owner Comments (Page 1 of 4)

problem #63

Oct 212014

Grand Am SE 2.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 179,190 miles


Yesterday morning I walked out to my car and noticed a stain on the road right under my car engine. I was running late so I didn't think about looking to see what was wrong with my car. Once I started my car and drove it for maybe two minutes my low coolant light came on and then stayed on for maybe a minute. I didn't think anything of it since I was on a major highway in the middle of rush hour. I continued on my way to work and maybe ten minutes later my low coolant light came back on. I couldn't get out and check because once again I was still in the middle of rush hour getting to work. As before the light only stayed on for a minute and then went off. I made it to work without the light coming on again. Once I went out to my car to leave work there was a stain on the concrete where my car sat. The stain was almost as big as my engine. I popped open my hood and looked to see if I had any coolant left and the tank was completely dry. So I put some coolant in and drove home. On my way home my low coolant light came on three times and went off three times, also I noticed that my temperature gauge was going up. Since once again being in rush hour I couldn't pull over and check my coolant levels every five to ten minutes, I waited to make it home before I checked my engine and coolant. I out a piece of cardboard under my car last night to see if I could see what was leaking but nothing leaked. But after I drove 30 miles to get to my college classes, I checked under my car and low and be hold there was a stain on the concrete under my car and I know it was from my car because there wasn't a stain before I got there. So now I am stuck with a leaking intake manifold gasket and I put over 200 miles on my car in three days. So I really can't have this problem.

- Cassandra B., Pleasant Hill, MO, US

problem #62

Mar 302010

Grand Am 3.4L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 162,197 miles

Again the intake manifold is leaking. 5 1/2 years later and 93,000 miles later. I had the same mechanic (fixed it 2004) work on this problem. I am not happy about the same thing leaking every so many years.

- lcabral, Pinole, CA, US

problem #61

Dec 292004

Grand Am 3.4L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 69,550 miles

I originally took the car into the dealer with the complaint that the thermostat dropped to zero on my way to work and all the way back home. That was about 60 miles round trip. I took the car about 2 pm and by 5:30 pm they are calling stating there is a leak in the intake manifold and needs to be fixed and I needed an oil change. When I asked how much the cost would be, I was given the estimation of $1100. I told the service rep that I would not have it fixed right now and I would be there in about 15 minutes to pick up my car. He tried to argue with me, stating that they had already drained the oil in the car and they had not completed the oil change. I told him that's fine just put the dirty oil back in the car but I will be there in about 15 minutes. He was very unhappy with me, and when I showed up my car was still not ready. Again he tried to tell me how unsafe the car was to drive. I told him I would take of it. I know this mechanic and told him, he told me to bring the paperwork from Pontiac to him to read. I left my car with him and he replaced the intake manifold gaskets, valve cover gaskets, and oil pressure guide. And changed the oil.

- lcabral, Pinole, CA, US

problem #60

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.

- iang, Hamilton, OH, US

problem #59

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.

- cjc.luna46, Redwood City, CA, US

problem #58

Sep 112012

Grand Am GT 3.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 144,340 miles

I am a student on a set income and still owe on the car. I cannot believe all of the complaints with the same problem that is up in Canada to. Overheating and losing coolant. I think GM decided to find something to have individuals to purchase new cars when their cars hit the five year old mark because of the coolant the company decided to use in their vehicles. I am going back to my Chryslers. My La Baron lasted 20 years with around 200,000 miles before it decided to die on me.

- Patricia C., Fostoria, OH, US

problem #57

Apr 072010

Grand Am

  • Automatic transmission
  • 135,050 miles


my low coolant light is always coming on and going back off. i have had it in the shop several times and all they tell me is "its a leak but we can't locate it so we will fill your coolant back up and wait for it to get worse" THANKS!!!

- tiffhoward1984, Marion, IN, US

problem #56

Oct 292011

Grand Am SE 2.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 170,000 miles

My girlfriend bought a 2001 Pontiac Grand Am around October 2008. I told her not to buy the DAMN CAR but she was in a rush to replace her Plymouth Voyager, which was a piece of $#!+ too. It actually ran great until this year. We have both put way too much money in this car, and like complaints on here our Grand Am is having the same problems. I'm all for a class action lawsuit seriously!!! I can't afford to fix it right now and if GM knew about this they should have recalled these STUPID ASS CARS and take DEX-NOT-SO-COOL off the shelf!!!

- kenny d., Columbus, OH, US

problem #55

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 !

- bloomy250r, Olanta, PA, US

problem #54

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

- jrmr1959, Lehigh Acres, FL, US

problem #53

Dec 082010

Grand Am SE 3.4L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 65,000 miles


I have a 2001 Pontiac Grand Am SE Coup that has a class III coolant leak. I've replace the thermostat and It's still leaking. I have to add coolant daily. I've read that this has been a problem with GM and Ford vehicle due mainly to the use of plastic parts instead of aluminum.

- cirrus652-, Killeen, TX, US

problem #52

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.

- atlanticcitychris, Ventnor, NJ, US

problem #51

Dec 102009

Grand Am GT

  • 110,000 miles

This has been going on for over a year. Many, many trips back to the shop, several parts replaced, still not functioning properly. Smoke tested for gasket leak but that came back fine. I am still thinking that is the problem because we have spent lots of money replacing water pumps, coolant, temp gauges, etc. to no avail!!!!

- Susan L., Wallkill, NY, US

problem #50

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.

- Tony O., Oxnard, CA, US

problem #49

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!!!!!!!

- Kara P., Fort Wayne, IN, US

problem #48

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!

- amsden, Omaha, NE, US

problem #47

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.

- Justin S., Edmonton, AB, Canada

problem #46

Sep 082009

Grand Am GT 3.4L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 75,000 miles

Bought a 2001 Pontiac Grand Am GT with 46,000 miles on it. Now at 75K with moderate driving the intake gaskets are leaking. I'm told it will cost $8-900 to fix. Now thanks to a little research on my part (Auto Beef and other sites) I'm realizing that too many others have had this problem and had no recourse. Was there really a class action lawsuit that was thrown out? Are you kidding?!!! This was a defect from the start. If I pay to get this repaired(I don't have a choice. I still owe on the car), how long will it be before I have to do it again?!!! I can't afford this piece of sh*t. No wonder GM has gone under, and the government bailed them out, did they? Who's going to bail me out of this repair cost? By the way, I replaced the pass lock sensor as well, another common complaint and also the driver's side front wheel bearings TWICE! This is bullshit. Can anyone give me any good news? Is there anything I can do? I'm through with American crap. They should have let them all go under.

- Joan V., Long Eddy, NY, US

problem #45

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!

- native1948, Keremeos, BC, Canada

problem #44

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.

- Rhonda M., Griffin, GA, US

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