12th Mar 2009, 13:14

I own a 1998 Venture bought used. I have all the problems indicated in the previous posts. All of them. Now my head gaskets need replaced. Estimate is $1,800. If coolant is found in the oil, I'm told the engine is toast. I find it hard to believe GM let these known gasket problems go on for years. Total garbage and bad engineering!.

Be aware this 3.4 EFI engine is used in many different models including cars. Anything over 70,000 miles and it starts to fail, one uncommon expensive repair after another, non-stop.

I will not be buying anymore GM products even though I have been a GM customer for decades. No wonder they're on the edge of bankruptcy.

They can start to restructure by firing the complete senior engineering staff. Shame on anyone associated with the design of this vehicle.

30th Mar 2009, 13:46

We bought a new '99 Chevy Venture. At 100,040 miles the transmission would shift HARD. We found if we turned the car off for 5 minutes, it worked fine. Another 100 miles and it would have the same HARD shifting. We put up with this until 180,000 miles, and the mechanic sent the transmission to GM for a rebuilt replacement. This transmission did the same thing after 2,000 miles. Another rebuilt from GM, same thing!

Dealer replaced sensors, adjusted engine shifting timing, didn't help! We drove for 2 hours to see if transmission would act up, it did and we drove into Chevy dealer parking area, car still running. Car was checked out and they replaced sensors and timing on engine. Didn't help! Anyone with this same problem, please contact us at dsmmf@sti.net.

9th Apr 2009, 21:12

I own a 99 Chevy Venture. We bought it used in 07. I love the room for the kids and gas mileage on long hauls. We to have had problems with the windows, brakes, gas gage, EGR valve, low coolant, head lights are too dim, replacing often, brake lights going out often, water pump replaced once, shifts hard, and the list goes on.

I really liked the van when we first got it, but it has had its problems. Yesterday we went to the store. During the drive there, everything was fine, no problems, on the way back in the middle of rush hour traffic, the oil light came on, temperature light came on, it quit and would not start back, so we had it towed home and don't know if we are going fix it, or just cut our losses and try something different!

19th Apr 2009, 08:49

I bought our 2001 Venture new. It has 125000 miles on it and is the nicest riding vehicle we've ever had. I did have to replace the intake gaskets because of the orange antifreeze. I flushed the system and switched to the older green coolant. I still had a driveway drip, but adding a bottle of liquid aluminum cooling system sealer did the trick.

The transmission has been flawless. I had the condition of 'nothing' when you turn the key but found a slightly loose starter motor cable. Six clicks from a ratchet wrench and it never did it again.

Our wipers stay in the up position lately after turning them off. If I had lubed the linkage system, it probably wouldn't have happened. In the last year, the gas gage stopped reading accurately. There is a fuel treatment from the dealer that will free up the float, but I just reset the trip odometer and buy gas every 350 miles or so.

It has been my experience that most problems with any machine is due to neglect. People expect cars to be problem free just because they change the oil regularly. Cars are the most complex machines we own. Take care of them and they will take care of you.

20th Jun 2009, 08:01

'99 Venture 110,000 miles On random occasions car will not start. After sitting for 10 min to an hour, car will start. Has never stopped while running. Two different mechanics have put on analyzer, not when stalled, no problems detected. Changed cooling fluid, water pump, no help. Changed temp fan switch. any suggestions would be appreciated. willy1929@yahoo.com.

19th Jul 2009, 15:24

I have a 2001 Venture we bought new. We have had countless problems. (I am on the Internet today to try to fix a high idle problem we have had fixed 5 times.) Now my daughter drives it, but it is such a piece of junk I am not sure I want her to take it to college in the fall.

This was my wife's vehicle until she bought a new car two years ago. You can guess it was not a GM. She bought a Honda Accord and has not had a single problem. I have had similar problems with other GM cars I have bought. Our family was loyal to GM (we bought 5 in the last 15 years) and they failed repeatedly to stand behind their cars. We are done with GM. It is a scandal that we have spent tens of billions of taxpayer money to try to save this god-awful company.

20th Sep 2009, 10:50

I had a problem with moisture in the head lights. I tried the most expensive bulbs I could find. I found very little difference from the cheapest bulbs due to foggy lenses. I then bought fog lights for $80. All issues with visibility were solved.

Here's a tip if your headlight ever burns out. Quite often the bulb will still light up, on high beams. I swear that tip has saved me from getting pulled over on my way to work, a few times.

20th Sep 2009, 17:36

Uh yeah, the bulb has two filaments in it. The high beam filament is used less and thus usually outlives the low beam.

Using your high beams after the low beams burn out may save you from getting pulled over, but will not endear you to oncoming drivers.

2nd Dec 2009, 23:41

I just drilled a couple holes in the bottom of my headlights - problem fixed.

As for the brake lights on my Chevy Venture; there is a fix on ebay.

22nd Feb 2010, 15:17

Have a 2002 Venture, bought it used. going through the same issues. Gas gauge acting up, checking prices for a new sending unit or just the resistor itself from tristar in New York. Changed the intake gaskets to get heat and leaking A/C condenser to stay cool. Bought new headlights on Ebay, good deal. Hope that's it for awhile.

23rd Apr 2010, 07:06

I have a 97 Chevy Venture. Bought it used in 98 approx 50,000 miles on it. Being in the military, I took it to Spain and drove it for 2.5 years with absolutely no problems. I ran it at speeds of 100+ mph on occasion.

I get back to the states and drive it here, and everything started going wrong. The alternator design gives you a reading of 12+ volts and charging on your test meter... after 2 warranted batteries, I asked some questions to my local mechanic, who told me to remove the alternator and have it tested at the local auto parts store. He was correct... It will read 12 volts and charging, but you have no way of telling if the diode is keeping the charge going one way. Easy fix, but a pain in the brain. You must replace the alternator.

Right now I am dealing with a false reading on the engine temperature gauge; I knew it was time to replace the water pump, super easy, have fun getting to the thermostat, must remove the throttle body to get to it.

Keep an eye on the temperature of your engine; you can seize the motor and never get an accurate temperature reading. Service your radiator on a regular basis.