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1992 Pontiac Grand Am:
Cracked Cylinder Head - Recall/TSB

Alex Steele
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I just bought a '92 Pontiac Grand Am with a 2.3L four cylinder engine. I was told by a friend that there was a factory recall on this car having to do with a cracked head. Is there a recall and what should I do?




There's no recall pertaining to the problem, but there is a Technical Service Bulletin (#57-61-26A) along with a Special Policy. The bulletin addresses a crack in the rear of the cylinder head near the exhaust manifold which causes an external coolant leak.


The vehicles involved are 1992-'93 Buick Skylarks, Oldsmobile Achievas, and Pontiac Grand Ams with the Single Over Head Cam 2.3-liter four cylinder (VIN Code 3) engines. Due to a factory defect these cylinder heads were cracking left and right so General Motors sent out letters announcing the extension of the manufacturer's warranty to cover this particular condition for seven years or 100,000 miles whichever comes first.


I don't know the mileage on your Grand Am, but you're coming down to the wire on the seven-year time limit. So open the hood and take a look at the rear upper portion of the cylinder head. The crack will be clearly visible and surrounded by a greenish coolant residue; if it's there get to a dealer quickly to see if they can slip you in under the special policy.


If there isn't any crack then don't bother. This was a Service Bulletin, not a Recall. If you don't have a problem they don't want to hear about it.

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15 Jun 2015, 09:06
RE: Terrance G. Gegard,

This is all about how much you like the car. If your wife likes the car and the vehicle is in really good condition then it is up to you to what you want to do.

I wouldn't get a used engine; all you are doing is inheriting someone else's problems.

Price out what another car would cost then compare the cost of this car for its repairs and then decide what you want to do.

I recommend a remanufactured engine. This is basically a new engine and if there were any modifications made to the engine through the years then it would probably be done on the new engine.

The cost could be two to three thousand dollars but compare the cost of another car. If your wife likes the car and it is in really good condition then it would be a no brainer.

Terrance G. Gebard
14 Jun 2015, 21:46
We purchased our 1992 Pontiac Quad 4 new, It's always been my wife automobile. The head gasket was replaced at 79,000 miles, then the timing chain tensioner went bad, according to the sound of the engine. It now has 80,000 on the engine, But several mechanics without seeing the engine, say a quad 4 is not worth repairing. It has set four five years. Is it worth repairing with only 80,000 miles? The automobile looks somewhat like new. It has never been driven hard. BUYUSEDENGINE.COM wants $350. for the same Quad 4 with 116,000 miles. Should I junk it or not? Thanks for your Service.


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