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Old 10-10-2006, 10:17 PM
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Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Al
Posts: 41
Make: Pontiac
Model: 92 Grand Am
Engine: 2.3 Quad DOHC
2.3 Quad 4 engine problems

A while back I had a cracked head on this car a 92 Grand Am. I replaced the head, timing chain gears. Several thousand miles later I had a problem with a noise that turned out to be a lose timing chain slapping the cover.
This problem I never really figured out. The gear on one the new cam gears was worn really bad. I replaced the chain and gears. Several thousand miles later I have a rattling in the motor. After it warms up the oil pressure drops and rattles worse. I parked it.
Now I am wondering if maybe all this was caused by problems with the cam bearings. This may be the reason the cam gear was eat up. Now loses oil pressure due to bad cam bearings.
This car only had 90 something thousand miles on it. During this process of fix or repair monthly was only about 8000 miles.

Any ideas or similiar experiences? It is hard to find a good quad 4 engine?

Thanks!
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  #2  
Old 02-23-2009, 01:02 AM
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Join Date: Jul 2005
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Make: Pontiac
Model: 92 Grand Am
Engine: 2.3 Quad DOHC
Anyone near north Alabama need this car?

Never got the problem fixed. Soon after it started losing oil pressure after it warmed up. Been setting up a while and now won't crank. Has new tires, struts, brakes. The A/C was working when it ran.
If someone needs a parts car let me know. I liked this car when it run but don't have time to fix constant problems.
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  #3  
Old 02-23-2009, 07:34 AM
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Make: 2.3 quad 4 w41
Model: oldsmobile
Engine: calais
Mike Godzwon has this problem with his achieva, hes running straight 40 weight to get the oil pressure up, without enough oil pressure, the tensioner for the timing chain cant work properly.

If you really want to sell the car, you should list where your located.
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Old 10-13-2010, 07:15 PM
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Make: Pontiac
Model: 92 Grand Am
Engine: 2.3 Quad DOHC
Just now getting around to fixing this car since this post. How to you get the steel water tube off that goes under thr oil pan? It seems impossible to ge the two bolts off that hold it. What's the deal with the balance shaft, oil pump, ect. Never worked on one of these so I have no idea what's under there. Somewhere on here it said there was a left hand bolt. What does the balance shaft do? Also how can you tell if the timing chain plunger that keeps tension on the chain is good?
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Old 10-13-2010, 07:49 PM
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only 1995 and up engines have balance shafts. All your 92 has is the oil pump. two bolts hold the pump to the block. two bolts hold the pump pickup to the block. these bolts are accessed by removing the oil pan. the oil pan is removed by taking out all of the oil pan bolts.
In my experience, i also drop that side of the subframe and just let it sag under its own wieght. this will allow the pan enough room to drop down and clear the oil pump, so the pan can be removed from the car/bay.

also, the water pump pipe that goes under the oil pan can be removed by snaking your 8mm socket down in between the exhuast runners. if that doesnt work, you can also reach under the manifold from the top and use a 1/4" drive ratchet with 8mm socket to get them. you can do it. just try.
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Old 10-14-2010, 03:00 PM
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Make: 2.3 quad 4 w41
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Engine: calais
franken post, but atleast by the OP.
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  #7  
Old 10-16-2010, 08:15 PM
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Model: 92 Grand Am
Engine: 2.3 Quad DOHC
Getting to the oil pump

Still in the process of getting pan off. Did manage to get the water tube off. I have the one bolt with the spacer that blocks getting to the oil pan bolt at the transmission. The bolt has a hex stud on it and it has already rounded off trying to back it out. Tried a couple of jam nuts but they wouldn't hold. Guess when I start back I will grind it out of the way with a radiac wheel on an air grinder. It will have to live without that bolt.
This motor loses oil pressure after it runs a while. it's sounds great until then.
I was told the oil pump may not be pumping enough oil to spring the timing chain tensioner out and making it sound bad. Do I need to replace the timing chain tensioner? The timing chain and gears have been changed not long ago. The timing chain guides have a little wear. Guess they will be ok.
I'm hoping the oil pump is the oil pressure problem. The car doesn't smoke or use oil when it runs. I was told the main bearing could be the reason the oil pressure drops. Could that be true if it runs good and doesn't knock?
I have found with these cars you are pretty much on your own as far as getting help. Most mechanics just say get rid of it as soon as you can. Guess it has just become a quest for me to get it running just because of all the negativity.
Thanks to all who have had answers.
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  #8  
Old 10-16-2010, 08:25 PM
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i would think that if the bearing(s) is gone it would knock....but im not 100% sure
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Old 10-17-2010, 08:55 PM
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Engine: 2.3 Quad DOHC
Got the pan off. Had to drill holes in that last bolt with spacer and chisel it out to get to the last top oil pan bolt. When I got the pan off I was able to screw what was left of the stud with vice grips. Found that the timing chain tensioner had come apart. The clip that holds the ratchet on the tensioner was in the oil pan. Got new oil pump and timing chain kit that comes with guides, gears, chain and tensioner. Hope this solves the problems.

Is there anyway you can tell if the oil pump is bad by looking at it? Do you all prime the oil pump or put petroleum jelly or oil in it for start up? Will it damage the valves if you rotate the engine the wrong way when putting the new timing chain on?
Anyway thanks for the help here.
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Old 10-18-2010, 07:19 AM
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Make: 2.3 quad 4 w41
Model: oldsmobile
Engine: calais
You can rotate the engine some with the timing chain off, but not much and you must be in the correct position. The service manual describes this properly.

The oil pump can be checked for tolerances with a feeler gauge. IMHO if the teeth are still on the fiber gear your pump is fine. Never had one lose tolerances to cause low OP.

No need to prime the pump for restart. just crank over with the IDI removed so the plugs dont fire until you have OP. Sometimes OP wont build unless you fire the motor, which you might have to do.
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