Repair and Maintenance costs on 1996 Oldsmobile 88

How expensive are the maintenance and repair costs for the 1996 Olds 88 LS, given that this is a discontinued model line? What do you think of mechanical reliability especially the engine (gasket leaks) and transmission? Does this car take regular or premium gasoline? And what is the gas mileage like in the city?

by in Corvallis, OR on July 09, 2009
1 answer 2 comments
ANSWER by on July 10, 2009
What type of Engine do you have in your Olds? How many liters is it? Then I can start to help you with some estimates. I would not worry about the fact that Olds is 'no more' because, the mechanical parts are pretty much all the same for Olds, Buick and Chevy. We do have a scheduled maintenance section for Repairpal.com Just go to the Estimate section and choose Scheduled Maintenance under the service type and then choose the 30k , 45k etc. I am well aware of the Dexcool issue and I am glad that you are too. How many miles do you have on your Olds? If is is under 50,000 you can pretty safely switch coolants, if and only if, you are willing to do 2-3 complete flushes of cooling system. I have found less problems with the. The smaller 3.1 and 3.4 liters are really bad. I have seen many, many failures. I used to work at a shop where we serviced a fleet of over 600 Buick Century cars and the first thing that we always did was to flush out and replace the Dexcool and, this was brand new cars! Your Olds should run fine on 87 regular. Actually, it is a Federal Law that all cars made for the US Market have to run fine on regular gas and pass Smog. That is why they have Knock Sensors to limit the Spark Advance. Good Luck!
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COMMENT by on July 13, 2009
The 96 Olds 88 has the 3.8L V-6 engine. One thing I am concerned about is coolant leakage problem. There was a class action suit involving the use of DexCool coolant in GM cars like this one. Coolant leakage can cause corrosion and problems with the intake manifold gasket in particular (both upper and lower). http://www.dslreports.com/forum/r19569981-GM-Dexcool-Intake-Manifold-lawsuit-settlement
COMMENT by on July 14, 2009
"I am well aware of the Dexcool issue and I am glad that you are too. How many miles do you have on your Olds? If is is under 50,000 you can pretty safely switch coolants, if and only if, you are willing to do 2-3 complete flushes of cooling system." This car actually only has 40K on it. It has basically been garaged and driven minimally even though it is a 1996 model. Are you suggesting that I should wait until after 50K to safely flush the coolant? Can I do a power flush of the coolant instead of having to do it 2 or 3 times? What type of coolant would you recommend using instead of DexCool?
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