Where Do I Find The Test Articles?

Finding the right information to troubleshoot the misfire condition on your GM 3.8L car or mini-van (Buick, Chevrolet, Oldsmobile, Pontiac) can be quite a time consuming process. So I've tried to make this ordeal a little easier by providing a lot of reliable and proven testing information (although you may still need a repair manual and other online sources of info). The links below will take you to specific tests to find out what causing your misfire condition:

  1. GM 3.8L Ignition System Tests (at: easyautodiagnostics.com).
  2. GM 3.8L Engine Compression Test.
  3. GM 3.8L Fuel Injector Noid Light Test.
  4. GM 3.8L Bad Fuel Injector Test.

You can find a complete list of GM 3.8L diagnostic tutorials here: GM 3.8L Index Of Articles.

What Tools Do I Need To Test The Misfire Code(s)?

Having the right tools to test and diagnose a misfire condition or misfire codes will make the difference between throwing money and time down the drain or saving money and time. With the right tools, you'll also save a lot of frustration.

Depending on what the root cause of the misfire is, you'll need several tools. Most of these you can buy online, none of these will break the bank and I'll make some recommendations on them. Here's a guide to some of the basic tools that can be and are used:

  1. Ignition System Tests:
    1. Spark tester.
    2. Multimeter.
    3. 12 Volt test light.
  2. Fuel System Tests:
    1. Noid light.
    2. Fuel pressure gauge.
    3. Multimeter.
  3. Engine Mechanical Tests:
    1. Compression tester.

Now of course, you'll also need basic hand tools like: screw-drivers, ratchet wrenches, sockets, etc. You'll also need a generic scan tool to retrieve the diagnostic trouble codes (DTC's) from the computer's memory. Keep in mind that using the right tool for the job will save you time, frustration, and /or keep you from damaging the component that you're testing.

To help you troubleshoot the issue on your specific vehicle, each article, presented here, will tell what tools you'll need and where to buy them.

Is This Something I Can Do? Or Do I Need To Take It To A Repair Shop?

Most of the tests that you'll need to perform on your GM 3.8L 6 cylinder equipped car or mini-van are simple and easy. Even someone with little practical ‘wrenching’ experience can easily accomplish them.

The deciding factor, to either troubleshoot the car or mini-van yourself or take it to an auto repair shop, is if you have or don't have the necessary tools and the time required to perform the tests. Here are a couple of questions to consider:

  1. Do I have all of the required info (such as repair manual, online testing info, etc.) to diagnose/troubleshoot the vehicle myself?
  2. Do I have the patience to work on my own car?
  3. Do I have the time it will take to diagnose and repair the vehicle myself?
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Buick Vehicles:

  • Century 3.8L
    • 1993
  • LeSabre 3.8L
    • 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005
  • Park Avenue (& Ultra) 3.8L
    • 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005

Buick Vehicles:

  • Regal 3.8L
    • 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004
  • Riviera 3.8L
    • 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999
  • Skylark 3.8L
    • 1993

Chevrolet Vehicles:

  • Camaro 3.8L
    • 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002
  • Impala 3.8L
    • 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005
  • Lumina (& MPV)
    • 1993, 1994, 1995, 1998, 1999
  • Monte Carlo 3.8L
    • 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005

Oldsmobile Vehicles:

  • 88 (& 88 Royale) 3.8L
    • 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998
  • 98 Regency 3.8L
    • 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996
  • Achieva 3.8L
    • 1993

Oldsmobile Vehicles:

  • Cutlass Ciera (& Cruiser) 3.8L
    • 1993
  • Intrigue 3.8L
    • 1998, 1999
  • LSS 3.8L
    • 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999
  • Regency 3.8L
    • 1997, 1998
  • Silhouette 3.8L
    • 1993, 1994, 1995

Pontiac Vehicles:

  • Bonneville 3.8L
    • 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005
  • Firebird 3.8L
    • 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002
  • Grand Am 3.8L
    • 1993

Pontiac Vehicles:

  • Grand Prix 3.8L
    • 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008
  • Trans Sport 3.8L
    • 1993, 1994, 1995