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02 buick lesabre shocks


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dr.donut
User

Jul 15, 2016, 2:39 PM

Post #1 of 18 (391 views)
02 buick lesabre shocks Sign In

This is a 2002 buick lesabre custom with a 3.8 and about 85,000 miles ,,the wife takes it to work every day and recently she said it drove "bouncy" I tried it out and noticed it didn't drive like I remembered , any bumps are felt kinda hard.mostly from the rear. The rear shocks I replaced not even 40,000 miles ago they are the self adjusters with an air feed from a leveling sensor from what I understand. I also remember hearing what sounded like a small compressor going on for a short time just after start up and I didn't hear that recently ., at any rate it feels more rigid and hoped I could get an idea of what I'm dealing with before taking out the back seat and nosing around, thanks.


Hammer Time
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Hammer Time profile image

Jul 15, 2016, 2:49 PM

Post #2 of 18 (390 views)
Re: 02 buick lesabre shocks Sign In

You easily could have a shock jammed up. Go to the rear and manually bounce the car and see how much it moves.



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Discretesignals
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Jul 15, 2016, 3:17 PM

Post #3 of 18 (386 views)
Re: 02 buick lesabre shocks Sign In

Is the rear of the vehicle jacked up? Seen level sensor arms come off causing the compressor to pump the shocks up to their full height and give you a buckboard ride. Take a side view picture of the car and post it in here.





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(This post was edited by Discretesignals on Jul 15, 2016, 3:22 PM)


dr.donut
User

Jul 22, 2016, 5:08 AM

Post #4 of 18 (352 views)
Re: 02 buick lesabre shocks Sign In

So , I jumped up on the back end of the car and both sides seemed to compress the same (240lbs. of donuts) they seemed stiff but I don't know how they're supposed to react. Got underneath and the arm and wiring for the adjuster looked good with no corrosion , got the pics , drivers sits at 28" and pass at 29" , rear tires are same size at 35 psi ,different maker , I took the air supply off thinking air would come out but that did not happen ,what do yous think ? I couldn't get the pics in ,maybe they are I don't know it's not my thing .


Tom Greenleaf
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Jul 22, 2016, 7:00 AM

Post #5 of 18 (346 views)
Re: 02 buick lesabre shocks Sign In

LMAO - "240 lbs of donuts!!" (Thanks, needed the chuckle)


Is this thing up like in heat or something? That's those adjuster rods OR the dang thing they send signal to the dinky compressor up front.


The height difference is totally possible by different brands of tires brand new. Can be marked the right size and be correct and that far off but is enough IMO for just brand.


IDK - some of these if in heat like I said like it's azz in the air if too much bull on a certain car and parts or controls out of sight expensive I've made them plain one setting air shocks for lift only types not total spring and no longer self leveling which was only both rears not each one separately on tad older stuff by GM,


T



dr.donut
User

Jul 22, 2016, 10:12 AM

Post #6 of 18 (341 views)
Re: 02 buick lesabre shocks Sign In

The problem did occur this summer and today's our hottest day here in N.Y so if the wife complains that they are worse then that could be a factor. The tires are not new but different brands new ones go on in winter.I didn't think one inch difference to the wheel well mattered but included it any way ..Car junky was my first stop so I'll look around some more ,thanks again.


dr.donut
User

Aug 2, 2016, 6:30 AM

Post #7 of 18 (322 views)
Re: 02 buick lesabre shocks Sign In

hammer said the shocks may be jammed, this pretty much what it's like and would add up too because the compressor would go on every time after start up , is there a way to un-jam them ?


Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
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Aug 2, 2016, 7:09 AM

Post #8 of 18 (321 views)
Re: 02 buick lesabre shocks Sign In

If a shock jammed I doubt it would "un-jam" plus probably stay in one spot wrecked and ride like a buckboard already mentioned.


Air pump coming on when just started can be normal. Just temp of air from last use or how it's parked it's already trying to adjust but should quit the pumping up sound. Once driving it delays adjustment for road conditions and you don't hear it anyway.


Just fill up with fuel it adjusts again or more load.


So if you are having trouble isolating if air is the problem, adjuster to that or the shock part maybe take it all out depending on what more you find and put in new air or shock or if both together do it.


You just have to know if it's over adjusted and too high or a broken shock which should be off more than the 1 inch you said I would think?


T



dr.donut
User

Aug 2, 2016, 9:05 AM

Post #9 of 18 (318 views)
Re: 02 buick lesabre shocks Sign In

I can get the conversion pair for just over $100** ,I have to see my trusty mech. yet ,the ones on it are not that old so I'm weighing options ,just looking for normalcy ,thanks again we'll get back.


Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
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Aug 2, 2016, 9:24 AM

Post #10 of 18 (317 views)
Re: 02 buick lesabre shocks Sign In

If those are worth their weight in donuts (smile) then go for it. At some point if no other reason do you really need this thing to self level? Lots of vehicles don't and do fine. If you want a freaking truck buy a truck.


I can see the need or want if you were always changing loads from just you driving to a car full of people and stuff back and forth all the time. Other than that to me it's just another something to cause a headache,


T



dr.donut
User

Aug 4, 2016, 6:27 AM

Post #11 of 18 (301 views)
Re: 02 buick lesabre shocks Sign In

I replaced the air ride shocks with the conversion kit ,a coil over shock . They were not easy to find at auto stores and I would have went on line if I didn't find them at pep boys after some bad info and some running around . With the rear suspension hanging they went right in with the help of a bottle jack to squeeze them a bit and they ride nice ..I thought the old ones might want to expand but they did not , they were seized up ,$300** worth of scrap metal held in both hands ,fantastic .


Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
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Aug 4, 2016, 6:57 AM

Post #12 of 18 (299 views)
Re: 02 buick lesabre shocks Sign In

I can't vouch for what you found just that some vehicles were/are AIR only for spring and or strut so any issue holding air the vehicle fell flat to bottom, some cut up tires of proper size - a problem.


Later as some when newer were insane bucks each! I mean whole car 1,000s of $$s then just coil over "strut" or shock was created and seemed to work fine but can't say from driving those enough to know if character was correct. IDK - other models of same vehicle body were not made that way from new and did fine.


In general hate to deviate from OE but this would be one I'd think about hard for myself or others especially at age and if it behaved properly and could be aligned properly,


T



dr.donut
User

Aug 5, 2016, 6:53 AM

Post #13 of 18 (289 views)
Re: 02 buick lesabre shocks Sign In

It's just the way it is I guess .. Took a short test drive and all seemed good. Next morning dead battery, thought it was an isolated incident ,charged it up and on our way but it was dead again at noon so I got a new battery and all is good for now , funny how other things go wrong when repairing one item ,I think these cars are haunted sometimes ,maybe a reality show in the works .Thanks again .


Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Tom Greenleaf profile image

Aug 5, 2016, 7:07 AM

Post #14 of 18 (287 views)
Re: 02 buick lesabre shocks Sign In

? If no air pressure and level being watched now you do need to know those are NOT using electricity now. Disconnected at least at the pump and maybe at sensors and sealed off from the elements.


Said somewhere I made some just a tire valve to leave at one pressure and change if needed depending on what was wrong with those systems and budget for owners,


T



dr.donut
User

Aug 6, 2016, 6:16 AM

Post #15 of 18 (270 views)
Re: 02 buick lesabre shocks Sign In

I pulled the fuse for the air ride system already thinking they would relax ,the fuse is still out and the supply lines are tucked up out of the way that shouldn't cause any problems , would it ?


Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Tom Greenleaf profile image

Aug 6, 2016, 7:13 AM

Post #16 of 18 (268 views)
Re: 02 buick lesabre shocks Sign In

Just for good measure I'd test any plugs with a plain test light to see if they have power especially when ignition is ON. Some older PITA ones ran with the car off dammit and killed batteries!


If worried or find there's a problem may need to test for a parasitic drain but I really doubt that. I think you are done,


T



dr.donut
User

Aug 7, 2016, 5:34 AM

Post #17 of 18 (263 views)
Re: 02 buick lesabre shocks Sign In

good looking out ,I did have to replace the battery don't know if that did it but I'll check for any voltages on the leveling sensor and such


Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
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Aug 7, 2016, 8:03 AM

Post #18 of 18 (259 views)
Re: 02 buick lesabre shocks Sign In

I sure would hope fuse out and item unplugged and tied away it wouldn't drain battery. It might have many times before this fix and harmed the old one or if old enough ready for a surprise anyway - hard to know that just the odds go up dramatically with age of a battery.


What Buick did for this car will escape me as historically they made so many versions of this model by name. Can't know but think this model would also be huge for the rental car industry which would buy so many they set the specs of features such that there's less crap to go wrong for the customer who doesn't want to be stranded for silly things on a vehicle they are probably unfamiliar with for a rental.


Buick by name again was famous for making I'll say "sleeper" cars that don't attract attention but could have the very latest techno stuff, creature features and remain discrete (blend in) not like an obvious luxo car.


If worried put a voltmeter on its battery known charged that you can see many hours later if it drops with any hood light out if equipped. It might drop from say 12.6V 1/2 hour later and shouldn't with a new battery. Right away it does still draw some current for "X" many minutes not enough to pull down battery but would show up like a drain and be normal.


I really still think you are fine unless something is plain broken about something,


T







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