Question about 1998 Buick LeSabre

2 Answers

98 buick lesabre starting problems and coolant leak

I have 98 buick lesabre that just starting having some problems starting. When I turn the key, I hear a click, but the engine will not turn. After a few minutes of trying it starts. I took this to a mechanic who said it was due to a gasket leak (intake manifold, coolant leak) which is causing a problem with the pressure. He also said that unless the gasket and pump are replaced, this problem will deteriorate to the point where the car will not start at all.

The estimated repair is $1500. I have haven't seen any posts on a coolant leak resulting in car not being able to start before. Is this correct, and if so is the estimate I was given a fair one? Also, does this need to be done immediately or can this be delayed - I really don't have this kind of money to put into a 10 year old car. Any feedback on this is appreciated.

Posted by on

  • scorp8175 Dec 08, 2008

    That wasn't me that said it was inappropriate (I rated it helpful). Thanks for your help.

  • kfetterman1 Feb 27, 2009

    I'm having the exact same problem. Don't know if this is related. But, I first starting having problems Mass Airflow sensor. I cleaned it and the problems went away. Later on I notice there was coolant leaks and the engine light kept coming on. I just put extra coolant into it. Now, after about 1 month I my car is not starting. I need to take the car into ths shop tomorrow. I have a 97 Buick Lesabre.



2 Answers

  • Level 3:

    An expert who has achieved level 3 by getting 1000 points


    An expert that got 10 achievements.


    An expert that got 5 achievements.

    Vice President:

    An expert whose answer got voted for 100 times.

  • Master
  • 341 Answers

That is a common problem with upper intake ..when starts going bad usually you will have excessive white smoke out exaust pipe or check oil on the dipstick for milky color oil . if it gos bad it will cause the motor to hydro lock. thats when antifreeze gos into the clyinder causing the motor to lock up.. and as cost most places charge $1100 to $1500 for that repair..most of the time you wont see a leak because it leaks inside the motor. hope this helps

Posted on Dec 07, 2008

  • kelvin smotherman Dec 07, 2008

    how do you think this is an Inappropriate response ???? when i answered all your questions ?


  • Level 1:

    An expert who has achieved level 1.

  • Contributor
  • 1 Answer

I had the same problem and found this article
"The issue is the intake manifold gasket in some GM vehicles. According to CTV, the part may degrade in vehiclesbuilt between 1995 and 2003. In worst-case scenarios, the gasket is failing, introducing coolant to engine oil,rendering the latter ineffective and resulting in siezed engines."

Posted on Nov 07, 2009

  • Ephesians610 Nov 07, 2009

    My car ran rough all the sudden. I checked the oil but no water but the radiator was low. I checked the dipstick and no water in the oil. I refilled the radiator and started it up. It ran for about 60 sec and then sputtered and died. Then it wouldn't sart. The engine seized because water and oil leaked in the intake manifold and filled the piston chamber preventing the pistons from moving. Some times this can be just one or two pistons. So, remove the spark plugs and look for oily/wet plugs. I pulled one plug off and water/oil started streaming out. Once you get the plugs off, you can try to start the car and see if the engine turns over. Mine did and it spewed water/oil like a 1 yr old projectile vomits milk! So don't leave your head under the hood when you crank it. If all the plugs are out and it turns over you may be able to replace the gasket ($50-100) and get it working again. If you hear grinding or noise other parts could have broken inside and might not be worth the fix.



1 Suggested Answer

  • 2 Answers

SOURCE: I have freestanding Series 8 dishwasher. Lately during the filling cycle water hammer is occurring. How can this be resolved

Hi there,
Save hours of searching online or wasting money on unnecessary repairs by talking to a 6YA Expert who can help you resolve this issue over the phone in a minute or two.

Best thing about this new service is that you are never placed on hold and get to talk to real repairmen in the US.

Here's a link to this great service

Good luck!

Posted on Jan 02, 2017

Add Your Answer

Uploading: 0%


Complete. Click "Add" to insert your video. Add



Related Questions:

1 Answer

My 1989 buick lesabre won't start! After having

Not anymore it isn't a nice car
Sounds like oil & coolant come out
into the coolant recovery bottle
You lost a head gasket or thermostat
stuck closed
I think it's time after 24 years to send it
to car heaven & take the tax write off

Jul 28, 2013 | Cars & Trucks

2 Answers

Where is the heat sending unit located in my 98 buick lesabre

engine coolant temperature sensor located on intake manifold under the thermostat housing.

Dec 25, 2012 | Cars & Trucks

2 Answers

I have a 2001 buick lesabre from 2days ago it was getting cold , i founnd leak the coolant but after driving for a while leaking stopped but it get cold coolant leak again? should i replace something or...

When the motor heats up it is expanding thus stopping the leak. You need to have it checked by someone or put in some radiator dye from your local auto parts store and use a black light to determine where the leak is. Is is not hard to warp a hot engine lacking coolant and then we are talking major work to fix it. You could use some radiator stop leak found at your local auto part store such as a product called BARS LEAK which could cure the problem or make it worse by plugging the flow of coolant.You really need to know where the leak is at and get it fixed.

Nov 20, 2011 | 2001 Buick LeSabre

1 Answer

I have a 98 buick lesabre. I am a woman and have no clue whats wrong with it and cannot get straight to the point answers of what is wrong with it. When i drive it, it gets hot, my windshield fogs up,...

your heater core is leaking. It is allowing engine coolant to enter the passenger compartment via the air conditioner / heater ductwork. A cheap temporary fix is to purchase a radiator stop leak product and have someone put it in your radiator. Follow directions carefully, as the coolant can be very, very hot and under pressure. The correct repair can be quite expensive. In warmer climates you can bypass the heater core and run without a heater.

Sep 08, 2010 | 1998 Buick LeSabre

2 Answers

I have a 1998 Buick Lesabre that keeps losing antifreeze.

Buick 3.8's are notorious for intake manifold leaks. If you are sure you are not leaking externally (look under the alternator and on the top of the transmission), it could be an intake manifold leak. I've replaced mine...I didn't think it was too hard a job for an amateur.
It could also be a head gasket, but the intake leaks are much more common.

Nov 05, 2009 | 1989 Buick LeSabre

1 Answer

Trouble Starting 98 Buick LeSabre

Read your comment on 8/18...Kzactly what I thought. always look at the basics...more times than not, you will find problems there, and , by checking, you eliminate false readings when doing other tests.

Aug 16, 2009 | 1998 Buick LeSabre

2 Answers

95 buick lesabre wont start

98 buick lesabre wont crank with key. When I cross the starter it runs great for 10 seconds and dies.

Nov 08, 2008 | 1998 Buick LeSabre

1 Answer

98 lesabre grinding starter

most likely your bendex wheel in the starter is not engaging the flywheel this could be due to a bad solenoid on the starter. chances are it's a bad starter, i would check to make sure all connections to starter are tight and you have atleast 11.5 -12.5 volts of current in the battery. low voltage can cause this problem as well

Aug 28, 2008 | 1998 Buick LeSabre

Not finding what you are looking for?
1998 Buick LeSabre Logo

1,893 people viewed this question

Ask a Question

Usually answered in minutes!

Top Buick Experts


Level 3 Expert

79847 Answers

Colin Stickland
Colin Stickland

Level 3 Expert

22326 Answers

Ronny Bennett Sr.
Ronny Bennett Sr.

Level 3 Expert

6927 Answers

Are you a Buick Expert? Answer questions, earn points and help others

Answer questions

Manuals & User Guides