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2003 Astro LS
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346 Posts
I look forward to all the Astro Cabbie stories.
... cuz, as you know: "They get all the sex..."
The taxi company was leasing Astro taxis to 2 female drivers that were turning tricks, and fired both of them after one got busted and there were a lot of complaints about the other one and the other drivers leasing company vans threatened to quit. In a town of 33,000 the word got around and it was hurting business.

I'm thankful that female passengers never seemed interested, since about 2/3 of my business was summer tours, which depended on TripAdvisor reviews. Driving a taxi was complicated enough without adding sex that could have risked my permits.

I made sure that women felt comfortable in my van. Detailing it almost every day so that it looked squeaky clean inside and out was one of the reasons.
 

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2000 Lifted 4x4 Astro 92 V8-350 Shorty
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6,240 Posts
Looks good.
Personally, I have NEVER used RTV on a differential.
It is cruel, and unnecessary.. lol
 

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I received a photo message from my daughter this morning. The temp gauge was at the top of the red zone. The VDOT guys had just topped off the empty radiator when I got there, I took the next exit and found a McD's parking lot with an Advance Auto aross the street. I popped the hood, steam comes out, I find a split in a heater hose. Send wife and daughter for a replacement, they are OUT of hoses. Wow. I disconnected the rear heater back when I was too sick to flush the water out of it before a freeze (it split), so I cut a chunk out of one of those hoses. Topped it off and made it home. The check engine light was on, 14, 35, 54 (and still the 83 that I've not looked into). Low voltage on the fuel pump relay, intake leak (I knew about), and high coolant temperature. The headlight for the Malibu is due in today, hopefully I can get it together in time to send her home in her own car.

Roseanna Rosannadana was right. It's always something.
 

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2000 Lifted 4x4 Astro 92 V8-350 Shorty
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Most of you know... I have touted a few products I've had great success with...
  • Seafoam "Trans-Tune" (fixed 2 transmissions of mine with shifting issues)
  • Blue Devil "Head Gasket Sealant" (fixed my 2000 head-gasket leak.. still fixed)
While I believe in fixing things the "right" way.. some times it's not economical or practical... and these alternatives are worth a try. So far the ones above have worked for me.

Well, every Astro I've had have ALL had power-steering fluid leaks at the HYDROBOOST unit. A couple years ago I swapped my hydroboost unit in my 2000 (with a known good one from a spare fleet van). A year later.. the replacement unit also developed a slow leak. It's a steady slow drip past an o-ring seal (not under pressure) and is apparently somewhat common.

Problem with this little hydroboost drip is that is makes a huge mess over time. Additionally in my case, it soaked my driver-side control arm bushings (both upper and lower) essentially blowing them out almost completely. I replaced the upper control arm last year, and have already purchased the driver side lower control arm. (last month I changed the lower passenger side). Once this driver-side lower is changed, then they ALL will have been replaced.

Well before I put a new lower control arm in place.. I wanted to fix this leak yet once again.

Blue Devil makes excellent products, and I heard from people who had good success with their Power-Steering Stop Leak fix. Many of the review people said they tried other products that didn't work, and this one did.

So last week I poured in a bottle of Power-Steering Stop Leak...
Hand tool Motor vehicle Set tool Metalworking hand tool Wrench


Normally I follow instructions (which said to use 1/3 bottle).. but I figured this larger system (with power-steering AND hydroboost) I could use more... so I poured it all in. It's a small 8oz bottle and fit in the reservoir which was already low. I drove locally for about 2 hours around town on highway and everything seemed fine. Parked it until I drove home.

GOOD NEWS: IT WORKED

BAD NEWS: The drive home however, the steering seemed noticeably stiffer than normal. This greatly concerned me, so I immediately flushed out the system and replaced with fresh new power-steering fluid that same day.

Happy to say the steering has improved since.
I have also realized it isn't much stiffer now than my 92, which has a new gear box and pump.

The reviews on this product were quite mixed. Some said it worked perfectly, some said it didn't work at all, and some said it went beyond and damaged and blew out their systems. By design, it expands hardened rubber seals.

I wish I had followed directions and used less... but some people who did follow directions still had issues. I'm happy that I flushed out the product right after I put it in, but it still did it's thing.

Regardless.. the leak is FIXED.

I gunked the area, and it remains bone dry.
For the first time in a while.. my 2000 is now 100% drip-free leak-free.

I don't really recommend this one, unless you're willing to gamble.
Time will tell how it all pans out...
 

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Hey guys I just came back on board, been busy the last 6 months so I went back and caught up on all the post I've missed ...Glad y'all are good
I've been busy building a Subaru FB25 engine for my next "DD" a 2011 Forester. Since selling the Colorado the Astro has been my Daily Driver but after driving it every day I had to address the loud exhaust. The Gibson system I installed during the initial build was just too loud and had too little back pressure for a 4.3 so I took Leanne's advice (y) last week I installed a Quiet Flow Muffler and OEM full system including new cats and O2 sensors. What a huge difference in drive-ability, no more code 420. I can not only hear my self think but also the mid range in my stereo and how the engine is running, love it. I also replaced the TPS to rid a random loss of power so the van now pulls like a 4.3 not a 4-banger and I'm no longer missing the V8 Colorado....Cold weather is setting in here, we had some snow in the higher elevations last night so I'm hoping to have the Suby running by Thanksgiving and the van put up for the winter
 

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Loaded garbage in back of winter van(94), might wait a while till go to town, as is 4 outside.
At least the garbage won't stink. H/L switch died other night, have to fuss with it to get taillights, new switch was cheaper than the new connector pigtail I ordered! Probably won't need connector, but, having to work on it outside, best to have both here.
 

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When my daughter was using the van as her DD one of the heater hoses split while she was on the interstate. It overheated, but thankfully no immediate damage (Maybe the new head gaskets during the engine swap paid off). The highway assistance truck filled it back up with water, I made it to the next exit and found the leak. I wound up using part of a rear heater hose to replace the one that split, the rear heat has been disconnected since the swap. Since the weather has been warm, I hadn't bothered to get any antifreeze into it until last night. I was also planning a flush and intake gasket replacement, since it's leaking oil at the back. I bought 12 feet of 3/4" hose and cut out the old ones. There were tees (well, Y's) and clamps and points of failure scattered about. I got all of that out, and ran the new hose like they used to be run: One line in, one line out, no valve. I moved the flush tee over to where the control valve used to be, burped some air out, and let it run for a while. It has decent heat now, and I'm no longer worried about it freezing on me. I lost the rear heater core to a freeze when I was sick, I was not about to lose an engine too.


 

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I'll hold on to the valve. I figured I'd want it later after seeing several manual valves installed. I'll probably put it back in when I do the intake gasket.
 
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