Just bought a car, upkeep question


Asked by Apr 03, 2013 at 06:31 PM about the 1999 Suzuki Esteem 4 Dr GL Sedan

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

Couldn't refuse the deal on this running car!  its been sitting in a friends basement/garage: 5 Sp, hot battery started right up with little smoke from exhaust, looks like no rust/no leaks, drove around the neighborhood gears changed smoothly, engine sounded ok, looks structurally sound, a little smoke around gasket when i got back to the house-no fluids dripping or flying out from anywhere; front manual doors don't open from inside.  What should i look for/consider as i get this ready for the road? I've only had American made cars previously.

4 Answers


Change the fluids and filters, get an inspection done by a local mechanic you can trust to check the brakes and other potential issues. Fix the leak around that gasket and the door linkage.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

You probably have a mechanic give to an inspection. Take note of what items need attention and the price. Look up the KBB.com value and lower it by how much it will cost to get the car in shape.


Suzuki has left America. Meaning that they no longer sell cars here. This means that third party part supplies here will dry up eventually. The good news is that Toyota will keep offering Suzuki service for the time being. That said, the door handles are an easy fix if you have the skills. The door skin needs to be pulled and either the door handle rod has come loose, the plastic clips have broken or the plastic handles themselves are broken. all these parts are pretty cheap and easy to find. If I were you, I'd have the valve cover gasket replaced eventually if the smoke doesn't stop.. it might just be old spilled oil burning off. I would do a complete belt, fluid, and filter change to everything on the car and then drive it and enjoy it. Suzukis are pretty solid under the hood, although the skin, the trim bits and interior plastics are cheap and will crack or break.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

Gratitude to the guru guys again! Tylander, u picked up that i like to do things for myself ;-) Tenspeed, looking out for me like family; i've found an incredible trustworthy mechanic so whatever it needs will be done! this is an incredible blessing that i got for under $500! Money for tax/insurance/plates maybe stereo...its clean might even fix and sell! bidding on my Cavalier very encouraging, it should be gone tomorrow. Might fix my Jeep or sell for another Jeep! CarGuru's Rock!

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