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sehrhardt1

Need Help Fixing My 1989 Buick Reatta

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Hi i have recently acquired a 1989 Buick Reatta and there are some problems with the car. 1 problem is that when ever i turn the car on the headlights come up and they wont retract. 2nd the car can't idle and when i had a diagnostic run it said there is something wrong with the computer reley. 3rd problem is when i run the car and use the gas peddle to keep it running there is a knocking noise which my father and I diagnosed as the lower pulley/ harmonic balancer being loose. Any suggestions on how to fix these problems would be great. Thanks Steve.

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Benefits of AACA Membership.

If I remember, the '89 has a headlight actuate/ retract switch. Help me out, guys. I know the '88s do, and the '89s are pretty much the same.

Is there a CHECK ENGINE lamp lit?

Harmonic balancer failures are starting to show up more frequently lately as they age.

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The check engine light is on and yes there is a button that should retract headlamps but when ever you push the button they dont retract. can still put them down manually but its a pain in the butt to do considering ever time i turn the car car on the headlamps pop up . any idea on how to fix the harmonic balancer?

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If a bulb is burnt out they won't close. If bulbs are ok then you may need a diode. Common problem. I have the diode if you need it

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Harmonic Balancer removal:

Harmonic Balancer Bolt Removal - Reatta Owners Journal

Change the crank position sensor at the same time.

Pull diagnostic codes and report:

How To Access ECM, BCM & CRT Codes - Reatta Owners Journal

May just need to clean or replace the IAC:

IAC Cleaning Instructions - Reatta Owners Journal

Headlight problem may be the headlight switch, retract prevent switch, module. Will need to figure out why they are being commanded to go up.

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i will try cleaning the iac tommarow to see if that fixes the problem and how would i figure out whats causing the headlamps to automaticly pop up and not retract.

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Diode is in harness in console by fuse panel. It won't cause the headlight doors to open. It is just there to prevent the headlamp retract lockout switch in the console switch panel from turning the headlights on when activated.

Only way headlamp doors open is either the headlight switch in the left pod is triggered, the lamp retract lockout switch in the console switch panel is activated, or the module is defective.

Are the headlights themselves on all the time, or can you control them on and off with the headlight switch in the left switch pod? That will confirm if that switch is working. To see if the console switch is the problem, it would be easiest just to disconnect it and see if lights go down. If not, then you need to replace the module under the windshield washer tank.

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Why buy ? The 89 Factory Service Manual (FSM) is online at Reatta.net.

Also the logic in the console switch is open (or keep open) headlight doors. When switch is off off they may retract if all else is proper. In other words the switch can force open or not force open. It cannot close.

ps if it is the module, one from a 87-88 Fiero has worked for me.

Edited by padgett (see edit history)

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Or you can go to a You Pick yard and look for Firebirds with pop up head lights. They are in an easy to remove spot on the fire wall near the master cylinder. I was walking with Jim Finn one day in my local yard and showed him where they were and grabbed some...

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I don't see why replacing the headlamp motor module should be something suspected immediately that's faulty. It's doing this out of ordinary scenario when it's receiving ignition power, not headlight switch action. Sounds like the previous owner rigged it to do this as some sort of way to comply with local laws or laziness. Any chance you can contact the prior owner to see what was possibly done?

Without turning the ignition key on and you press the headlight button and turn it off. What do the headlight motors do in that scenario?

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okay so ive now fixed the headlight problem and now i just have to figure out why the car wont idle at all , also my father believes the starter is stuck because of how much power its sucking from the battery when i try to start it.

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okay so ive now fixed the headlight problem and now i just have to figure out why the car wont idle at all , also my father believes the starter is stuck because of how much power its sucking from the battery when i try to start it.
Please share with us what fixed your headlight problem so it might help others who have the same problem in the future.

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Learn how to use your diagnostics to look for codes and the operation of the sensors.

We can't tell from here how your engine is running when it runs, so it's hard to guess if your having an ignition, air, or fuel problem that's keeping your engine from idling.

After looking at trouble codes reported, would be looking at ED01 TPS, ED21 MAF, AND ED22 IAC values for starters.

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