We are replacing our manifold gasket for the 2nd time... an $800 fix each time. Where is the recall?
I own a used car lot and these vans are a constant headache for me as well. I frequently see wipers not returning to the usual spot after shutting off, and airbag lights coming on for no reason. Warning lights on the dash seem ongoing. I'll avoid them at the auction as though a plague is coming.
We have had nothing, but problems with our Montana. We paid too much for it and now we cannot trade it because we owe too much. Our lights are always burned out and the air conditioner is always leaking in the van. The back windows never did open and we always have noises that are unexplained.
It sounds like most people have had trouble with light bulbs. Although this is an annoyance, these are things that you can easily address yourselves without the cost and inconvenience of having a mechanic fix it. Changing light bulbs only involves a screwdriver, after all.
When you get the old bulb out, just spray some WD-40 in the socket to displace the water moisture, and even take a piece of steel wool to wipe out any rust.
The guy with the idea of drilling a hole in the bottom of the light assemble, that was a good one. Also for the people with water filling up the assembly, try sealing it with a gasket of blue Permatex to keep the water out.
Really, folks, these are minor problems that are surmountable.
I have owned a 1999 Montana for 3.5 years, and have replaced the headlight bulbs (they should be done in pairs), the passenger side parking lamp bulb, and the passenger side brake light bulb.
Our fuel gauge will swing wildly, or show a full tank when it gets below half a tank. That's usually a good thing for both drivers to discover together, rather than get stranded thinking the other driver filled the tank...
The outdoor temperature display is often wildly inaccurate. My wife and I get a kick out of the "Ice" warning on hot summer days.
Just recently, the HVAC fan started blowing high with no key in the van, while no one had been near it for several hours. I pulled the high-speed hvac breaker to stop it, and we just don't use the fan on high (5) for the moment. This also happened on a friends 2003 Suburban, so I suspect it to be a known issue with GM.
I'm wondering if it all may be related to a bad ground connection. I found this review while googling Montana electrical gremlins.
We've had fairly minor issues mechanically over the period we've owned it.
We've had to replace a wheel bearing.
Also, the typical intake manifold gasket, which I've done on several vehicles I've owned. It would be nice if GM acknowledged thier screwup and recalled or fixed the intake problem free.
The motor is not powerful, but it's adequate and can tow a 1000lb camper trailer as well. The van's handling is excellent.
Other than those bizarre glitches, the van has been excellent, and my wife will not give it up.
I bought my 99 Pontiac Montana in January of this year.. A mistake I will not be making again. In 24 hours, my front right blinker, ALL inside dome lights, and ALL automatic locks went out. And NONE of my fuses are blown. We checked... twice........... I have strange, unexplained noises, my husband thinks I'm crazy. And this morning, I went to roll up my window on the drivers side, guess what... IT Doesn't ROLL UP. My other window does. Are there any recalls on this kind of stuff? If anyone knows PLEASE LET ME KNOW.
I am getting tired of hearing complaints about the Pontiac Montana.
We bought a 1999 used with 20K miles on it and I have found that trouble with these vehicles only exists in one of four general areas:
1. Anything between the front of the front bumper and the rear of the rear bumper, and
2. Anything between the bottom of the wheels and the top of the luggage rack.
3. Anything electrical, and
4. Anything mechanical.
I hope this helps anyone starting to trouble-shoot problems with their GM piece of crap.
We just pre-emptively replaced the notorious gaskets that allow coolant to spray onto the cam-shaft (great quality control GM) and have been told that my 98 Grand Prix GTP has the same issue. It is sad that our family will never again trust an American car manufacturer… Not just because of these issues mind you, but because of the overall faulty engineering of the vehicles coupled with the "So what" attitude once the consumer walks out the door of the dealership. The cavalier attitudes of the billionaire suits in these corporations not only screwed their companies out of a future, but also the American workers that can only work with what they are given.
I too have experienced the disappointment of the Pontiac Montana. At 60,000 miles:
The front wheel bearings had gone bad, (I was actually told this was normal at that many miles).
Brake lights and turn signals have burned out frequently.
The rear door leaks which shorted out the rear hatch dome.
Several warning lights are on at all times.
The fuel gauge is useless.
Driver side window rolls up with great difficulty.
Have had to replace window controls on driver side
...that's all I can think of for now.
My advice is avoid GM products all together; there are other companies that have a reputation of producing quality vehicles, why risk all these problems with GM.
1999 Pontiac Montana.
I'm only commenting on a couple items, not to complain, but to assist. I have my issues and complaints, but just don't want to pile on here.
First: The headlights leak and gather moisture (to the point of 1-2 inches of water inside them).. I tried drilling holes and this drained the water, but did not solve the moisture problem. I tried using sealant around the O-ring of the bulb, but it still did not solve it. I finally solved the problem by buying a new headlight assembly ($120) per light and the moisture was still a problem. So I dried it out with a hair drier and then put CPVC cement (glue) around the entire edge of the light assembly where the light is glued together. It solved the problem fully. The problem here was that from the factory the lights do not come sealed and water goes right into them, causing the light bulbs (hot) to get wet and blow.
Second: Mysterious noises: We had a terrible rattle that we could not explain nor find for well over two years. Finally.. my daughter pinpointed the sound over her head in the back seat and upon stopping I found that the luggage rack tightening screw was loose. I tightened it and we've never had any mysterious noises since.
There are many other issues, I just don't have the answers for them.
We bought a brand new Montana in 1999. It wasn't long before the electrical problems began to start up.
The traction control/ABS lights go on & stay on. It was diagnosed as a faulty sensor. GM decided to house this sensor in the wheel bearing, so the entire bearing had to be replaced to change the sensor... 3 times so far. Now it goes on and stays on, and goes out and stays out. I give up.
The radio at times just starts up on its own... without the car running. Most of the time the radio just shows bunches of crazy letters, frozen.
The air bag light continued to go on, and twice we've replaced wiring under the plastic step plate into the van. Great place to put sensitive wiring. The wipers have a mind of their own. They stop mid windshield if they feel like it. The locks on the sliding doors stopped working a long time ago.
And the newest kick is... the car will lock itself - driver's side... all by itself. Don't leave the keys in the car... you may be locked out.
Given all this... the van has been a workhorse for our family. We still have it and continue to maintain it. It always starts & we will keep it until it dies. GM screwed up big time in the 90's. The new cars coming out are better engineered and getting good reviews. GM has to fight back with good cars, or they will lose out to the Japanese real soon.