Question about 1995 Buick Riviera

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Engine noise on 1995 Buick Riveria SC 3.8 L V6

Noise is at idle goes away at about 1200 rpm. Replaced lower tensioner, idler pulley and both serp. belts. Noise does not seem to affect performance at all (good mpg, acceleration, etc.) but is very annoying (like a deisel motor). How much rotational play should there be on the crank pulley? What could this noise be?

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  • greene_famil Jan 31, 2010

    Checked oil, good. Topped off power steering fluid, rattle/noise seems to be centrifugal (sp?), when I let off the throttle there is a slight clunk kind of sound. The sound does not seem to be internal engine but more external belt/pulley related. Could the pulleys on the crank have a problem?

  • greene_famil Jan 31, 2010

    Checked oil, good. Topped off power steering fluid, rattle/noise seems to be centrifugal (sp?), when I let off the throttle there is a slight clunk kind of sound. The sound does not seem to be internal engine but more external belt/pulley related. Could the pulleys on the crank have a problem?

  • greene_famil Feb 02, 2010

    Moderate vibration at low engine speed (600-1000 rpm). I do not feel any vibration above 1000 rpm. There seems (to me-I don't have any service manual for this car) to be excessive rotational play on the crank. That leads me to the timing chain and gears but the performance is not lacking at all. Could this be the harmonic balancer? Bad bearing in the upper tensioner pulley? Bad bearing on the inner idler pulley (outer changed)? Power steering unit? The alternator did not have any slop at all (I didn't feel any slop in the power steering either).

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Remove the supercharger belt... check for play in the supercharger pulley... there is a plastic coupler that connects drive from the supercharger cone to the main body of the supercharger... these wear out ... it is a problem on both the series 1 (1995) and series 2 (96-99) supercharged 3800 engines

Posted on Jun 27, 2010

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It is most likely the harmonic balancer car is well known for this problem

Posted on Oct 24, 2011

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Could be the oil pump it’s located behind the harmonic balancer on the 3.8 and when its out of tolerance it make a rattling noise. The 3.8 Buick harmonic balancer requires a special puller. But, if you purchase three 4" long, 6mm diameter, 0.1 thread bolts and three heavy duty washers you can use a standard 3 hole puller to remove the balancer. The threaded holes for the 6mm bolts are about 2" inside the access openings that are located on the face of the balancer. You will need to place the heavy duty washers on the 6mm bolts before they are used with the puller. The hex heads on the bolts are to small for the standard type puller and the washers will support the torque required to remove the balancer. The puller must be the type that allows an extension rod to be added to the center bolt of the puller. This extension is needed because the center bolt of the puller is to large in diameter and it is not long enough to reach the back of the through hole on the crank shaft. (it is drilled very deep). Cost about $2.50, This beats paying over $150.00 for the suggested factory puller.

Posted on Mar 12, 2010

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If its a rattling noise this is most likely the tappets. these are basically silencers for the engine.they sit on top of the valves. check your oil levels as these tappets filll with oil in order for them to work propley.

Posted on Jan 31, 2010

  • ballingerdan Jan 31, 2010

    if its a rattling noise this is most likely the tappets. these are basically silencers for the engine.they sit on top of the valves. check your oil levels as these tappets filll with oil in order for them to work propley.

  • ballingerdan Feb 01, 2010

    pulleys dont tend to rattle unless the bolts are loose. does the engine have a lot of vibration?

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