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Looking at 98 T/A need opinions

This is a discussion on Looking at 98 T/A need opinions within the Firebird / WS6 forums, part of the Vehicle Specific category; New to the board and figured i would look here for advice. Im looking at a 1998 blue green chameleon ...

  1. #1
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    Looking at 98 T/A need opinions

    New to the board and figured i would look here for advice.

    Im looking at a 1998 blue green chameleon T/A. Non WS6 All stock. Guy is asking $6900 for it. Hers the link.
    http://www.use.com/4041c5e997172b343c41#photo=1

    The car has 71,000 miles on it and i got the autocheck on it and it checked out good. Scored 75 where similar cars scored 36-66 so im assuming thats good. Car looks to be in pretty good shape. Dash had the famous cracks in it but there were no other issues with the interior that i saw. Only a couple issues with the paint but ive seen alot worse. The power windows, doors, hatch, power seat, and everything else worked. A/C was good and stereo was good. The windows didnt roll up real fast but they worked. There are some issues with the car though and i wanted to discuss them here before i go any further. I drove the car today and i noticed at idle the oil pressure was anywhere from 10-20 and when i got on it the most it got to was about 50. Is this normal? Im assuming the car has 5w30 in it and was thinking by going to 10w30 the pressure would go up? I popped the hood and the oil was where it should be on the stick. Here are the other things i noticed

    1. Steering didnt feel normal, car wasnt hard to turn but it definitely didnt feel right... thinking the power steering pump is either going out or about to. Is this a common issue? How much to fix?
    2. The shades for the t-tops were missing. Not a big deal but something i would need to replace asap cause its hot in texas.
    3. Passenger side lights would not pop up. More $$$ but should be an easy fix.
    4. Left blinker apparently wasnt working cause i was damn near rear ended turning. It showed a steady green light on dash and not blinking. Probably a cheap, easy fix.

    Any other issues with the car were cosmetic and expected for a 12 year old car. The guy wants $6900 for it but im thinking its too much. Any suggestions out there on what i should offer? The cars inspection sticker was out at end of May so hes gonna have to get the blinker, headlights, etc in working order to get the sticker. That is unless he knows someone who will do it anyways.
    So, what should i offer? Im not sure how much he's willing to come off the price.

    Thanks
    CC
    Last edited by nochey; 06-17-2010 at 11:07 AM.

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    Looking for f body


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    offer then 6,000 for it and explain to them that the repairs will cost you 900$..and it may very well cost that much. thats what i do when i buy a used car. and if they say "well we can fix that no problem." then tell them too piss off. and find a new one.

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    So $6,000 out the door with tt&l?
    I was thinking this too

  5. #5
    Yeah baby! Yeah! silverWS6's Avatar
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    Oil pressure seems VERY low My 2002 has 725xx miles and the pressure never drops below 40, not even at idle and my 1998 has 196xxx miles and the pressure on that one never goes below the 30ish area. I wouldnt trust a car with oil pressure that low. Next thing you know your oil pump goes out and you find yourself with a seized up engine.

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    Wink

    Silver,
    what weight oil do u use? I think this one is running 5w30. Could that cause low pressure compared to 10?

  7. #7
    Spaz is My Mentor SMWS6TA's Avatar
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    I got my 98' T/A, was stock like this one for $6500 last yr. Had 105k miles. Still was a good deal. This one I'd ask for 6k also.

    Quote Originally Posted by nochey View Post
    1. Steering didnt feel normal, car wasnt hard to turn but it definitely didnt feel right... thinking the power steering pump is either going out or about to. Is this a common issue? How much to fix?
    Not a common issue, check the reservoir, look for milky color or air bubbles, smell it, if it smells burnt it needs addressing.

    Quote Originally Posted by nochey View Post
    2. The shades for the t-tops were missing. Not a big deal but something i would need to replace asap cause its hot in Texas.
    Replacing these can be an issue and they are not cheap.

    Quote Originally Posted by nochey View Post
    3. Passenger side lights would not pop up. More $$$ but should be an easy fix.
    Motor is either burned out or the gear has loss some of it's teeth. It will take an hr or 2 to fix, but you can do it. Does cost some $$$, but would not make me walk away from deal.

    Quote Originally Posted by nochey View Post
    4. Left blinker apparently wasnt working cause i was damn near rear ended turning. It showed a steady green light on dash and not blinking. Probably a cheap, easy fix.
    Bulb is either burned out or the wire is not connected. Easy fix.

    Pay real good attention to how it shifts with it being an A4. Get underneath and look for leaks.

    Use this link. It provides a real good list of what to look for when buying an F-Body.
    Guide to Buying a Fbody


    Good luck!

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    Yeah baby! Yeah! silverWS6's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nochey View Post
    Silver,
    what weight oil do u use? I think this one is running 5w30. Could that cause low pressure compared to 10?
    I use Pennzoil platinum synthetic 5w30 on both my cars

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    pennzoil!?!?! you are a brave man.

    mobil 1 or valvoline for my car....and for truck, whatever i have left over in the garage.

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    autoconnectionllc.com 02transamce's Avatar
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    Pennzoil platinum is highly recommended,but I still use mobil 1.
    Posted via Mobile Device

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    i'm more of an Amsoil guy.

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    Auto Painter RyanJM's Avatar
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    I like the color that's a major plus. Hell I wanted a 6spd SS to go with my TA but if you don't want this TA I'll take it and fix it up for a DD.

    I use 10w30 in TX since it's hot here and the only time I run the car it's hard and I use whatever synthetic is on sale. I think $6k is a great price car needs a few things but overall it's a good place to start.

    I don't use my T Top shades anymore I just had my friend use 5% tint on them when he did the hatch over for me. Works great even on a hot sunny day and looks getter than those cheap pop in covers.

    I fixed my passenger headlight motor was cheap fix just hit a auto zone or OReillys and grab a motor.Takes a little time but not a hard fix.


    The steering I can't help with I have 85k on my 98 and no issue with that yet.
    Blinker is eaither a bulb or maybe a new socket either way a cheap easy fix.
    1998 Trans Am 85k miles.
    Bolt ons, MS3 113LSA cam, Circle D Stall, Tune, Modified WS6 style hood, Full Suspension, 6000k HID's, Clear Side Markers w/ Leds, Led 3rd Brake Light and 18" AR Staggered Killer Wheels w/ BFG KDW NT's.- Weekend Toy/DD
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    Did anyone notice the front driver side wheel is different from the rear driver side one? I wonder what's up with that. I guess the only real serious thing that bothers me is the oil pressure

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    Yes that oil pressure sounds low...STAY AWAY...RUN AWAY. Move on and find a different car

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    Auto Painter RyanJM's Avatar
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    I'm not sweating the oil pressure issue. I'll just drop my block from my car in since this fall I'll have either a forged 346 or 383 setup for a big shot of nos and some stage 2 heads and a medium cam. I want a nice cruiser and a 200 or 250 shot for the track. Super and turbo setups are expensive and I don't need power all the time anything over 420hp to the wheels is fine for street cruising and the bottle will make up for the rest at the track.

  16. #16
    Senior Member Schmalgar's Avatar
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    As others have touched on, the blinker is an easy fix. It's also a common, infamous, problem with 4th gen TAs. The bulbs run hot and crack the casing, which allows water to get in which shorts out the bulbs, often ruining the sockets. The bulbs are just a few bucks, the socket if needed is only about 10 bucks. But it will happen again. And again. Get used to it. Add ALOT of dielectric grease to the socket with the new bulb and that will help prevent it from shorting out again, but from my own experience it's not a guaranteed preventative.

    The headlight not popping up is also quite common. As someone said, it'll be either the motor or a gear. I've read that some folks replace the cheap plastic gear with a brass gear to prevent it from going dull/broken again. On my previous 98 TA both motors went bad and had to be replaced, cost me something like $300 each I think...

    Regarding the screens for the t-tops, I think the 98s didn't come with them? I think it's not missing them, it just never had them right?

    If the windows are going slowly now, they will stop moving soon. Slow motion was the first stage before my window motors failed on my 98. My old man memory doesn't really go that far back, but I think it was a ridiculously high amount to replace. If you are mechanically saavy you might want to try replacing those yourself.

    So those issues on a 12 year old TA aren't any big surprise. Others who know more than I do have spoken about the transmission and the oil pressure, I have nothing useful to add there. But 70k miles on a 12 year old car doesn't suck. As to the price, I've recently seen 01/02s with half the miles going for anywhere from $15k on up. $6900 sounds fair to me. Doesn't hurt to offer less though. Wave $6,000 under his nose, he'll probably take it. But the main problem I see is that this is on a small used car lot. They tend to be the 'iffiest' sale points, where they may be more likely to swindle you. Used car salesmen have a well earned reputation (apologies to you used car salesmen here). Might be worth your time and money to take it to a mechanic/shop and pay for a full inspection...

    -----

    Ok I just looked at the ad. The car looks pretty sweet! I love that color, and it looks good with the windows tinted. And it looks to be in pretty good shape body-wise, inside and out. I've never used autocheck, so not sure about that numerical rating. But as you say, if other similar vehicles have lower ratings, take it as a good sign...

    My question now is, how much does he want for that black Firehawk/Raptor behind it?? Can't see enough of it to tell if it's a real 'hawk or not (probably not), but I can see enough to know that I like it! And he has another chameleon green TA too! I never saw 3 or more TAs at small lots back when I was looking...
    Last edited by Schmalgar; 06-19-2010 at 02:12 AM.

  17. #17
    Auto Painter RyanJM's Avatar
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    I saw that I doubt it's a real hawk since it has what look like cheap aftermarket wheels on it but I do like the color and it does look like a hawk hood though. The raptor are a little taller but hard to tell in that little pic.

    The 98's do come with the T Top covers. I have mine. Just took them outta the plastic a year ago before I tinted the T's with 5 and put them back away. too much of a pain to take them in and out not to mention the ended up getting dirty finger prings when I was doing some work and then threw them back on so I gave up on them. 5% makes it dark if that's not enought use 2 layers

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    I would scratch this one off the list with that oil pressure.

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    I've been looking around and seeing that 10 psi per 1000 rpm is good. I'm gonna go drive it again and take it to a mechanic I know to look at it.

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    Auto Painter RyanJM's Avatar
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    Worth having it checked it is a GM after all could be a bad gauge. Maynot read excact. My volt gauge is a joke. I plan on putting a pod in when I do the stereo and cam some I can keep better track of the oil, voltage, and not sure what the 3rd will be yet.

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