Question about 1995 Chevrolet Lumina

2 Answers

I have a 1995 chevy lumina sedan, 3.1 v-6 engine. suddenly started knocking LOUDLY when running. (sounded like when an engine has no oil in it.) i checked oil, which is fine, other than just dirty. i noticed a small knock first when antifreeze was low. after adding antifreeze, noise went away. (i replaced the water pump roughly 6 months ago) knocking started again one day while i was driving. seemed like noise got louder when i tried to accelerate. i was afraid to push it, so i just went really slow to get to the nearest gas station a couple of miles away, so i am not sure if there is a loss of compression or not. the car has set ever since, however, since the weather has been so cold. i am fairly handy with working on my car, but this truly has me stumped, without taking the engine apart. i am trying to avoid doing this, if at all possible. i was told that it sounds like one of the rods are bad. if so, what is the best approach to fix this? also, another problem i have had with the car is regarding the antifreeze. it seems to be going somewhere, but i can't figure it out. nothing is leaking that i can tell. there is no leaking up under the dash. (heater core) there is no milkiness in the oil. (cracked head) any help would be much appreciated. i had just put a bunch of money into the brakes, etc. so i want to try to fix it if possible. (and not too expensive.)

Posted by on

2 Answers

  • Level 3:

    An expert who has achieved level 3 by getting 1000 points


    An expert that got 20 achievements.


    An expert that got 10 achievements.


    An expert that got 5 achievements.

  • Chevrolet Master
  • 3,018 Answers

Sounds like we have to things to address. The disappearance of antifreeze and a loud knock. So first the antifreeze. How much are you using? In other words how much are you topping it off with and how often? Now low antifreeze can make the engine overheat and knock from this. If you are absolutely positive that there is no head gasket leak and you are not loosing any antifreeze slowly out of the radiator cap or overflow reservoir then I would check for an intake manifold gasket leak. Often The problem with many mid "90s" vehicles is that GM had just introduced Dex-Cool antifreeze and it literally ate at every seal it came into contact with. A Google search will show you the billions in lawsuits they faced because of it. I can't tell you how many warranty repairs I did because of this.
Now if you car is continually running low on coolant and is heating up they it will ware on the rods and pistons and other engine parts. From what you have explained it does sound like you either snapped a rod somehow or dropped a valve. Unfortunately for this there is no other way to find out other than to pull the head and have a look. If you can fix this then it will be cheap enough parts and your labor. If you need to take it for a mechanic you will want to weight your options. I am very sure in my diagnosis. Anytime the engine knocks like that it is never good and you have to look inside to see how much damage is done. If you have any other questions feel free to ask.
Regards, Tony

Posted on Apr 07, 2011

Testimonial: "this definitely gives me somewhere to start! THANKS SO MUCH FOR YOUR INPUT!"

  • Christa Rohdy Apr 15, 2011

    about the antifreeze usage, i didn't have to add it very often; maybe every few days, depending how much i would drive the car. when i had to add antifreeze, i would only have to add enough to go up to hot or cold line on reservoir.(less than 1/2 a jug of antifreeze, maybe 1/2 a jug at most) usually when it would be low, it would just be a little at the bottom of reservoir. i never let the radiator get empty. i will start off with replacing the radiator cap and taking out the overflow reservoir to look for cracks. i really appreciate your input on this.

  • Iron
    Iron Apr 15, 2011

    It's good to know that you keep the level full. So many people don't. They think an oil change is all that's necessary. However the fact you have to add a half a gallon more than once a year is something to take a look at. You might have that one time that it would get overfilled and you might loose a little out of the relive hose on the reservoir. But you never over filled it so it is going into your engine system somewhere. When a water pump goes bad, when you can hear the bearings grind, it is a very distinctive noise. Where an engine just bangs or clacks real loud a water pump has a loud grind. When your engine is cooled down you can start the car, of course put the emergency brake on, and pop the hood and get right up on the engine and with your hand push back on the throttle. An engine noise you will hear and feel. A water pump you can hear more off to the side where it is located. Sounds goofy but you can also take a long screwdriver and put the handle to your ear and the tip on the suspected area and this will magnify the sound like a stethoscope would. Just don't ware any ties, jewelry, tuck any hair away and tie it up, or loose clothing. Most of the time you will not see an intake manifold gasket leak. Look closely when you change your oil for "chocolate milk." A dipstick will not always show this if the leak is not "too bad." It get's louder when you accelerate because the problem lies within the drive train. You made a good choice shutting her down until the problem is fixed.



  • Level 2:

    An expert who has achieved level 2 by getting 100 points


    An expert that got 10 achievements.


    An expert that got 5 achievements.

    Vice President:

    An expert whose answer got voted for 100 times.

  • Expert
  • 693 Answers

As for oil not milky , this could still have a crack or bad headgasket just going through the exaust port in the head. As for the loud KNOCK may be your oil pump quit working, Really hard to say, Hopefully it's not ready for overhaul. Best of luck to you.

Posted on Apr 07, 2011

Testimonial: "thank you for the info. i will check it out. :)"

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

a 6ya expert can help you resolve that 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.
the service is completely free and covers almost anything you can think of (from cars to computers, handyman, and even drones).
click here to download the app (for users in the US for now) and get all the help you need.

Posted on Jan 02, 2017

Add Your Answer

Uploading: 0%


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



Related Questions:

3 Answers

1995 Olds Silhouette rattled badly, died while running

I think you had better have a local shop inspect this for a failed engine connecting rod.

Aug 23, 2012 | Oldsmobile Silhouette Cars & Trucks

2 Answers

99 chevy lumina oil light came on it started to knock right then and then started to chug. turned it off and then checked the oil, its full. it will start but it chugs really bad.

Sounds like the oil pump has given out or the pick up screen could be clogged up. You will lock up the engine if you try to run it this way. Have the oil pump checked as well as the pick up screen.

Jun 18, 2011 | Chevrolet Lumina Cars & Trucks

1 Answer

My Lumina is making a knocking noise from the top of the engine. Sounds like the overhead cam has a problem. Two questions: I unintentionally added too much oil due to the low oil light. Would that...

I wouldn't run the engine more than you have to until a repair option or replacement is found.

That noise means that the engine could get worse. I would park it until fixed.

Sep 18, 2010 | 1995 Chevrolet Lumina

1 Answer

When the 1995 chevy lumina runs the motor blods down like its out on time and it will not start back up until the car sits for one hour

First of all, what engine size? Is check engine light on? Is it using coolant &/or oil? When was last tune up? Plugs,wires & filters? Always start off with maintenance first.

Jun 06, 2010 | 1995 Chevrolet Lumina Apv

1 Answer

Valves, lifters/engine noise

Sounds like you ran your oil pretty low my not be lifters but connecting rods. Was it a tapping sound or knocking?

Jan 12, 2010 | 1996 Chevrolet Lumina Mini

1 Answer

1995 chevy lumina makes terible loud noise like rods knocking when started. It has oil and water in it. what could be the problem?

it could still be a rod even if its full of oil. carbon build up inside the engine can cause a knocking sound but its probably a rod. does it go away after it starts?? if it only does it while starting, it could be leaking water in a cylinder after you cut it off and the next time you're cranking it, its trying to compress the water

Oct 03, 2009 | 1985 Chevrolet Chevy

3 Answers

1995 lumina cranks but will not start

Does it have the anti-theft system, if so check for the two wires that go to the ignition switch and make sure they are not broken. If they are they will need to be fixed in order to get it too run again

Mar 23, 2009 | 1995 Chevrolet Lumina

1 Answer

My daughter has 1995 Chevy Lumina with a 425 engine (?) that leaks oil. The intake valve has been replaced and it still leaks oil. The mechanic says he can't place the origin of the leak because the...

I had a '93 Chevy Lumina (sedan) with the 3.1L V6, and it was also leaking oil badly enough to coat the underside of the car with an oily sheen. A mechanic pointed me in the right direction. There is no distributor on this car, but there is a blank-off plate installed where the distributor used to be. The oil pump drive shaft runs off a gear meshed with the cam under this plate, which is also what the distributor used to be driven from. All I had to do was remove the plate, replace the gasket fitted between the plate and the opening, and oil could no longer seep through there. As I remember, I had to remove the air horn from the intake plenum to get at this plate. Hope this helps.

Aug 12, 2008 | 1994 Chevrolet Lumina

1 Answer

Signal displaying

That is the check engine light, it is either a fault in the engine oil or cooling, or the emission system, consult the owners manual, it explains these indicators, in any event don't drive the car until you are sure there is not a fault with the engine, if it is just the emission fault light then you can drive it for a while.

Jul 25, 2008 | 1997 Chevrolet Lumina

Not finding what you are looking for?
1995 Chevrolet Lumina Logo

566 people viewed this question

Ask a Question

Usually answered in minutes!

Top Chevrolet Experts


Level 3 Expert

75822 Answers

Colin Stickland
Colin Stickland

Level 3 Expert

22156 Answers

Jeff Turcotte
Jeff Turcotte

Level 3 Expert

8215 Answers

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

Answer questions

Manuals & User Guides