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Chevy Astro Awd/ Gmc Safari Awd

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Old 08-31-2003, 11:15 AM
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Default Chevy Astro Awd/ Gmc Safari Awd

I need to buy a work van and have been looking at these ( used ) They seem to be very popular.
For those of you that have them what are the problems that you have had. What kind of gas milage?
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Old 08-31-2003, 12:12 PM
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I had an Astro rear wheel drive and loved it! I shopped around until I could find one with 355 gears to pull the boat. Did a great job pulling 4500#. What surpised me was the way it went in the Missouri snow. Never got stuck. the only complaint I had was the material on the seats wore out way before it's time. Mechanically, never
had a problem. Was great for hauling.
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Old 08-31-2003, 04:20 PM
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Ive had 3 astros RWD and am extremely pleased with them. They are outdated nowadays but the tow great! With the 342 gear they are rated to tow 5500#, the same as my 1/2 ton 2wd Suburban!? I recently towed my 25' elim to LOTO (430mi) with no problem. it gets 10-11 Mpg though. The sub hauls better up hills and passing plus gets about 14-15 mpg towing, but my astro is easier to manuver and is more comfy. Greg
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Old 08-31-2003, 09:01 PM
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Thanks guys - The van will be for work only. NO TOWING

It will be a service van - HVAC

I have heard that they get about 15 - 17 MPG
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Old 09-01-2003, 10:59 AM
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ttt
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Old 09-01-2003, 09:22 PM
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15ish for 2wd dont buy the 4wd unless you live in the north pole
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Old 09-01-2003, 11:23 PM
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Tink- I did HVAC service out of mine for 5 yrs, 1986 4.3, bought it at 90,000 mi sold it 220,000....put the biggest tranny cooler that will fit in it, if anything the tranny is the weak point, couldnt kill the motor.....sold it two yrs ago.....its still running around!!!.......I was contracting, it was my truck, some of the guys had the AWD versions, didnt hear of any problems with them......harder on gas than the 2WD........Take the stupid stock car tires off the thing and go to a Light Truck Radial for service work...... I know with the wieght that I was carrying and a good set of LTRs on all 4 corners (like a Wrangler or something like that) I could go ANYWHERE in snow, no need for AWD....put good tires on the front cause with the wieght in the back it unloads the front and it wont stop in snow, no problem in the dry or the wet........I have a 2001 version right now, company truck,gas gauge went haywire, replaced under warr, thats it..... we will probably have to add a leaf to the rear springs before too long they lame out if put much wieght back there....the company just got some 2003s.....they sit quite a bit higher in the back so maybe the factory has addressed the problem........the heater doesnt put enough heat on your feet in winter, your feet get cold, my 86 was the opposite, your feet roasted,.....may drill some holes down there or some thing for this winter.......At the place I used to work (contracting) some of the guys are going with the Dodges,somewhat better gas milage, lower initial price, more nimble but their work is light (residential service) if your going to be putting any real wieght back there go with the Chevy, its a full frame truck based vehicale not a front drive car with a high roof.....take care of the tranny (cooler and come to a Complete stop before shifting from reverse to forward) change the oil and you can easily get 200,000 miles out of one wieghed down doing service work.............doug
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Old 09-01-2003, 11:48 PM
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I have a S-10 blazer which is similar to the astros. The truck was extremely reliable up to 150,000 miles. At that point several very expensive fixes were required. We needed to replace the egr valve twice for almost a grand. The fuel pump needed to be replace 3 or 4 times. The first one was almost a grand, the other ones were done under warranty. The spider manifold (fuel rail?) was leaking and was extremely expensive to fix. Otherwise the truck has been very reliable. The trans has never been touched and the engine uses almost no oil. The truck now has 170,000 miles and is still going strong.
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Old 09-01-2003, 11:51 PM
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15-17 is about right, a little lower for AWD.

Note- do not overload or the axle will give up-I have seen them used for delivering newspapers with bent axle housings.

And if you get the AWD you have to be real careful to keep the tires perfectly matched-otherwise big time driveline failures will occur.
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Old 09-02-2003, 06:10 AM
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Are the AWD Astros still using dual front differentials and three driveshafts?
That was the strangest setup I'd ever seen.
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