28th Jun 2001, 10:50
I have a '98 Safari that has been nothing but trouble. I've had it less than three years, and have dealt with these problems.
1. Had to have a new catalytic converter.
2. Had to have a new alternator.
3. Had to have new window motors.
4. Needed front brakes and rotors turned at 25,000 miles
5. ABS is acting up.
6. A/C just cratered.
7. Fuel pump is fixing to go.
8. Had a front-end problem that cost me two weeks of rental cars, 5 new tires on the right front, several wheel alignments and re-alignments, a 4 wheel alignment before the dealer finally changed out some front-end parts to correct the problem.
9. The rear lid struts failed.
10. The rear A/C switch melted down.
11. The selector switch (for A/C, defrost etc...) is out.
12. The dash vents won't work.
The trade in value must be compared to an Edsel. It will probably be in a junk yard by the time it's paid off.
3rd Aug 2001, 21:54
One car to avoid. My son owned this one, after having a pollution valve replaced, a conn rod came out the side of the oil pan.
So I pulled the engine out (stay away from that job) and replaced the crankshaft and piston/rod.
Went two miles and she quit. Bad fuel pump inside the gas tank.
Neighbor drained all the fuel manually into many containers. Put in the wrong fuel pump and had to do the same job all over.
Now it's running but "missing". No way a home mechanic can fix that.
Slow down for a turn and the engine is liable to quit - with loss of power steering. Exciting.
Took it to a dealer, for $700 plus he replaced the injector system and got rid of all but a minor "miss".
Ran it a few more weeks, when all the oil just flowed out of the transmission. Took it to a transmission place to have a rebuilt transmission installed for $400. Ah ha, he says, you have the ELECTRONIC transmission, that will cost you $1700.
Left window switch failed, which caused the battery to run down overnight, until I replaced the switch.
Broke a heater hose and lost the coolant without knowing it because the temperature gauge had failed long ago.
Tonight I drove 3 miles to a local store and the engine was just smoking due to another yet undefined cooling problem. Enough said.
16th Sep 2001, 08:09
I've had horrible problems with my 1995 GMC Safari.
1. The EGR valve has been replaced twice.
2. The alternator has been replaced twice.
3. The air conditioning compressor has been replaced once.
4. The anti-lock brakes kick in after I go over a small bump and apply the brakes. GMC has a service bulletin on this, but claims it only applied to vehicles built in Flint. Typical problem: Trying to stop after crossing RR tracks or gravel bits caused the anti-lock brakes to engage when the car is not sliding. Would nearly run into the rear of the car in front.
5. Windshield wiper motor does not work many times unless you get out, open the hood, and beat on the motor (or pull the wiper blade out manually). Again GMC has a recall, but will not fix because they say the problem only exists on SUV and pickup models.
6. Brakes wear out very prematurely.
24th Sep 2001, 19:14
Including comments about years other than 1995 in the 1995 section is wrong, unfair to those reading, and provides incorrect results for the 1995 GMC Safari review. They should ONLY be placed in their age group. To do anything else compromises YOUR integrity AND that of the survey. It then becomes just a bitch session for those who desperately need somebody, anybody to agree with them.
27th May 2002, 18:42
I have a 1992 Safari. I bought it about 2 years ago and so far I had to replace a gas line, a muffler and get the AC recharged. Other than that I have not had any trouble with it. This van replaced a 1986 Dodge Caravan and I would not get rid of it. My father liked it soo much that he bought a 1998 Astro. the only bad thing that I have to say about it is that it has a problem called "fish bite".. This is when your going at highway speed and it seems to be jerking. Common thing with GM vans and trucks. I must comment on the other comments listed above- alternators go on most vehicles (some quicker than others) brake pads/shoes/rotors/drums (self inflicted in most cases) AC units (look at the ford line)
24th Jul 2002, 19:10
I purchased a used, low mileage, 1993 Safari AWD. It has been a money pit from the get go. So far I have replaced the brakes, starter motor, catalytic converter, exhaust, wiper motor and have had the A/C repaired as well as new tires and alignment done to solve a mysterious wear problem. I have also had to replace various parts that fall off occasionally during use. All this during my first year of ownership. This thing is THE lemon of mini-vans. One touch I really "love" is that instead of using screws, they decided upon the liberal use of rivets. It makes DIY repairs "Oh, so much more fun!" Next time, it's anything, but a GMC.
The one redeeming feature that I can say is that the AWD worked very well when we had a snow/ice storm. It easily took us up and down our hilly streets, while 2WD cars were all over and off the road.
29th Jan 2003, 16:55
I own a '93 astro with almost 250,000 miles and have not had any problems that I would not expect from a vehicle of that age and mileage. Yes I've had to replace the wiper motor, starter motor, alternator, blower motor, and numerous sensors. The only large repairs made were the trans.@170,000 miles. and the fuel pressure regulator@200,000 miles. Of course brakes & tires go without saying. Yes the engine is a nightmare to work on due to space constraints, but I think you guys are expecting a lot from vehicles as old as you have.
1st Jun 2003, 22:42
1995 Safari Wiper Motor Repair is easy! I had the same intermittent wiper problems discussed here. Take the cover off of the motor box to expose the control circuit board. Unplug the board from the motor, and you will see cracked solder joints on the large motor connection terminals on the board. Just re-solder them, and your problem will go away!
I also had my torsion bars replaced at 46,000 miles when one broke. The dealer would not replace just one side because there was a design change and both needed to be changed together, yet it is not a recall. It was obvious the bar failed from a rust initiated strain-age crack. The service manager commented that there were five Safari's in for the same problem in the last few weeks.
21st Jul 2003, 09:43
I have a 1995 GM Safari Van I have not had a lot of problems with it until last week when I was driving it and the left torsion bar cracked. This is a potentially fatal situation. Had I been on the freeway or had my daughter who is a relatively inexperienced driver been driving this would have been a disaster. As I was driving the left side of the van dropped several inches causing the loss of control of the vehicle. I feel that this is a potentially fatal design flaw and possibly poor grade steel used in the torsion bars and needs to be addressed by GM. This is not normal wear and tear on a vehicle. I would be interested in corresponding with anyone else who has experienced this problem. Please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.