Question about 1991 Buick Riviera

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Ignition Sometimes, not always, when I turn the ignition key to start, absolutely nothing happens, I turn it back to the off position, then back to start, and it starts up. When that problem occurs, once in awhile it will take 2 or 3 turns of the ignition key (back and forth from off to start). I have thoroughly cleaned all connections at the starter, including the mating face of the starter to the bell housing. Any help will surely be appreciated. Thank you, Mark Gwynn Cleveland OH

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  • igiveafack Jan 28, 2009

    i have the same problem has any one found a solution?

  • pjm1234us
    pjm1234us Sep 10, 2012

    I also had a 91 Riviera years ago. I loved that car. Then one day I went to start the car and the security light was flashing and the car wouldn't start. I didn't realize it at that time, but everytime I turned the key to off and then tried to start the car it would reset the security system. I later read the manual and discovered that I had to wait 10 minutes for the security system to clear. It got to the point that it was doing this everytime and I got tired of waiting 10 minutes. I took it in and they ended up replacing the ignition and keys. The chip in the key had stopped working and cost me $600 to repair.

  • pjm1234us
    pjm1234us Sep 10, 2012

    Years ago I had a 91 Riviera and had the same problem. I would turn the key and the security light would flash. I would turn it back to off and the security light would still flash. After reading the manuel I discovered that the security system had been triggered and I had to wait 10 minutes for the system to reset. Everytime I turned the key on and off it would reset the time to 0 and have to wait another 10 minutes. I eventually got tired of waiting 10 minutes to start the car. I took it in and they had to replace the keys and ignition. The chip in the key stopped syncing to the car. It cost me $600 to replace.

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Years ago I had a '91 riviera. I had the same problem, and took it to a mechanic and was told it was the wires in the ignition corrode and eventually break from be turning so many times from starting the car. I didn't have this fixed because of the cost and it didn't do it all the time. the steering column has to be taken apart to get to it. I eventually sold it and sold it to my brother who is now having the same probably but it has not quit working altogether but eventually it will quit completely. Hope this helps!

Posted on Feb 13, 2009

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I was having a problem with my 91 riviera and talking to some automotive electrical guys and they said something about the key being dirty if you clean the key and arround the computer chip it should start hope this helps.

Posted on Jan 31, 2009

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Did you get a answer about your buick i have a simmler problem if so my email is wiz2kds@yahoo.com thank you

Posted on Nov 09, 2008

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Ignition


he ignition switch generally has four positions: off, accessories, on, and start. Some cars have two off positions, off and lock; one turns off the car, and the other allows the key to be removed from the ignition. When the key is turned to the accessories position, certain accessories, such as the radio, are powered; however, accessories that use too much battery power, such as window motors, remain off in order to prevent the car's battery from being drained. The accessories position uses the least amount of battery power when the engine is not running, which is why drive-in movie theaters recommend that the car be left in theaccessories mode during the movie.

The on position turns on all of the car's systems, including systems such as the fuel pump, because this is the position the ignition switch remains in while the car's engine is running. The start position is spring loaded so that the ignition switch will not remain there when the key is released. When the key is inserted into the ignition switch lock cylinder and turned to the start position, the starter engages; when the key is released, it returns to the on position, cutting power to the starter. This is because the engine runs at speeds that the starter cannot match, meaning that the starter gear must be retracted once the engine is running on its own.

Either the ignition switch or the lock cylinder may fail in a car, but both circumstances have very different symptoms. When the ignition switch fails, generally the electrical wiring or the plastic housing develops problems. The car may not turn on and/or start when this happens. Also, the spring-loaded start position could malfunction, in which case the starter will not engage unless the key is manually turned back to the on position.

When the lock cylinder malfunctions, however, the operation of the key itself will become problematic. If the tumblers become stripped, the lock cylinder may be able to turn with any key, or you may be able to remove the key when the car is on. If the tumblers begin to shift, the lock cylinder may not turn. Sometimes the key can be wiggled until the lock cylinder turns, but it is important to remember that this is only a temporary fix.

Replacing an ignition switch can be tricky business, particularly in newer cars, because of the anti-theft devices used in cars. Once the ignition switch is separated from the back of the lock cylinder, the car can be started with a screwdriver, making it vital that this switch be difficult to get to. It is important to consult a shop manual before attempting this kind of repair, as the anti-theft devices may require special tools; attempting to remove an ignition switch without the proper tools can render the car inoperable.


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Sometimes when starting the car the key does absolutly nothing. Car is in park, steering locked with no preasure, foot is on brake. Key will not turn. I try moving steering wheel, tapping on key with...


It sounds like the ignition lock cylinder has worn out. This is the part you put the key into. It has tumblers that can wear out and when this happens, the key no longer pushes the tumblers in the correct sequence or position to allow the cylinder to turn at all.

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My '98 Buick Regal won't start randomly but fires right up when it does. randomly when you turn the key to start it does absolutely nothing. No warning lights or clicks - absolutely nothing. All the...


It dosent need a new steering column. But It very well may need an ingnition position sensor. It is a sensor that identifies what position the key is in. Obviously if it was malfunctioning it would not recognize you have the key in the start position, and when it does it suddenly fires. I had a 95 Regal that had the same problem, not a cheap one but pretty necessary.

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Turn the ignition key and nothing happens. turn it


when it won't start, use a test light on the solenoid wire (the small gauge wire) in the start position, you should have voltage. Also check your shift linkage to make sure the shift cable isn't keeping it from going into park position. try it in neutral position as well... that's a clue to a trans selector switch

Aug 22, 2009 | 1999 Toyota Camry Solara

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My 98 max wont start sometimes you turn the ignition nothing happens, eventually it sarts, sometimes immediately, sometimes 10-15 mins later it starts


sounds like ignition cylinder has gone bad, try sliding key in and out while turn key and if key slops around cylinder is bad

Jul 07, 2009 | 2000 Nissan Maxima

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Some it starts


my 97 geo metro will not start when I turn the ignition key. The radio will work, buzzer etc. I can jump it with another car and it will start and run. If I turn ignition key to start, there is absolutely no crank, no click, no nothing. Could this be ignition module, bad battery, voltage regulator, starter?

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Engine will not always start. Battery replaced.


can you hear the start relay under the bonnet clicking when you turn the ignition on?.

if you can...then I suspect your starter motor is dodgy.

Dec 30, 2008 | 2000 Ford Mustang

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Won't start - Starter or ignition or what?


It could be the ignition going out. To test the ignition you would have to get a volt meter and find the hot wire to the ignition. When nothing happens when you turn the key, test the hot wire going out of the ignition that eventually goes to the starter. Your ignition is just like a light switch, just a little more complex. You will have to find the wire that connects the switch to the starter to see if the switch is working properly. If when you try to start the car see how many volts you are getting. It should be at 0 until you try to start the car. then it should jump up to either 12 or 24 volts depending on what your start used to start the vehicle. A lose wire from the battery can cause these same problems however. I would start with that and make sure you have good clean battery posts and connections. Then check to make sure they are tight. Then get into the ignition switch checks.

Nov 11, 2008 | 1996 Buick Park Avenue

1 Answer

When turning on car turn key all the way nothing happens, then I turn back the key jiggle it then turn it on again it starts up. Told it was the ignition switch, trying to find info. on how to replace this...


On the back of the ignition switch is a plastic casing which retains a spring to return your key to the correct position once the car has started. The plastci casing wears and the spring does not work sufficiently. You need to replace the ignition switch casing/back end.

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