1984 Chevrolet Celebrity



January, 3, 2012 AT 7:34 AM

Hello, I was wondering if the problems on my car are worth selling to another person or is it better to scrap the vehicle?

Problems include:
Messed up Choke in Rebuilt Carburetor
Both CV Joints and boots are bad
Needs new shocks and struts
Brake Rotors thin
Oil leak out of Rear Main Seal
No Catalytic Converter
No Air Conditioning
Some Dash Lights dont work
Clunks into gear at idle
Has high idle
Gets around 15 mpg
Takes around 10 minutes to warm up to drive or else it will die taking a corner.
Washer Pump does not work

Good Things include
Excellent Transmission
New Fuel Pump
Excellent Power Steering System
Excellent Electrical System
Comfortable Interior
Tough Car in a fender bender lol
Good Tires
New Spark Plugs
New PCV Valve
Very good heater
Good Wheel Bearings
Good Muffler

Also, I am wondering if I will get in trouble if I take to this car to a mechanic(i.E. Firestone). I am wanting to get a mechanics word on this car before I sell. Will I get in trouble if I take it there with no catalytic converter?


3 Answers



January, 3, 2012 AT 7:50 AM

It is illegal for a mechanic to remove the catalytic converter. Owners can play stupid and say they know nothing about it. The problem only comes in states that have emissions testing.

GM front-wheel-drive cars are killer cars in a highway crash. Late '80s through '90s models are the worst. The other stuff you mentioned can be left up to a buyer who likes to tinker. Personally, I would rather drive your car than have a new one given to me. Oh, wait. I drive a rusty trusty '88 Grand Caravan and let my two newer vehicles sit. (One has 4,200 miles).

Chokes can be fixed.

CV joint boots are common on any car and yours are relatively easy to replace.

Shocks and struts go bad on all cars. Nothing unusual there.

Most people don't understand the serious legal implications of rotors that are worn or machined under the published minimum thickness. It's good you know they need to be replaced, but you're going to find they aren't very expensive.

High idle and low fuel mileage can both be caused by a vacuum leak. Poor fuel mileage can also be caused by an exhaust leak ahead of the oxygen sensor.

Washer pumps are high-failure items on GM products and can be purchased from all auto parts stores. They aren't very expensive. The switches fail often too and many aftermarket suppliers make replacements that just plug in.

The rest of the stuff is common failure items on any car. It's normal to have to fix things when you buy a used car from a private party. The fact you're disclosing the known problems will make for a better transaction and two happy parties.

If you can't get at least $300.00 for the car, you'll get about that much for it at a scrap yard. You can also donate it to a community college with an automotive program. You can deduct the true value on your tax return. The value to my college was more than what a junkyard would give you.



January, 3, 2012 AT 8:02 AM

What about fixing the rear main seal leak?



January, 3, 2012 AT 8:19 AM

That requires removing the engine or the transmission. If the leak isn't real bad, it's cheaper to just keep adding oil.

If you have time and you want to address some of these things before selling the car, consider having the work done by students. We were always looking for live work for the kids to get real-world experience. We also had about a dozen people in the community who would sit on a broken car until it fit what we were teaching. We charged $10.00 per hour for the time the job was supposed to take, and we got parts at a real good discount and marked them up ten percent.

You can expect the rear oil seal to take at least a week, depending on how they schedule their classes and how much time is devoted to shop work. My students were in the shop five days a week for 4 1/2 hours each day. Any work they do must fit what is currently being taught. We would not do the oil seal in Electrical class, for example. To do so would take work away from the businesses that hired our graduates.

Be aware too that as I used to tell people on service calls to fix their tvs, you won't get your money out of most repairs when you sell or trade. As I explained with their broken tv, it might be worth $50.00 on trade for a new one, but if I fix it first for another $50.00, they would be lucky to get $75.00 on trade. Cars work the same way at dealerships. They expect to take your car in with things that need to be fixed and are going to value it accordingly. Having a lot of recent repairs done isn't going to do much to the value of your trade-in. It's just going to cost you money.

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