Any GM guys, or techs in general - Chicagoland Sportbikes
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post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old 04-18-2006, 12:04 AM Thread Starter
cornfields are boring
 
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Any GM guys, or techs in general

Hoping someone would be kind enough to lend some advice. My sisters car a 98 Sunfire with the 2.2 has started acting up on her. It stalled twice when she was leaving work. The first time i was not there, but the second i was, i was standing near the back of the car and it sounded like she turned the key off, it just cut off, no stumble, just off, she told me she didn't touch anythying, then it restarted without any problems. Drove the car home, and around the block, could not get it to shut off again. She said the first time it stalled she had just pulled out of her parking spot, when "The wheel got hard to turn, and all the lights on the dash came on" she then turned the ignition off, but she can't remember if the car was running or not, im assuming it wasn't.

This car is new to us, only had it about a month, im really not sure where to go being i cannot recreate the problem, i was thinking ignition module? But the car runs excellent, doesn't miss a beat, but just killed itself. I could really use ideas, would a cam sensor cause this? bad ecm? can i test a module myslelf? I already have the module and the coils out and on my bench but i don't know what to look for or check. Sorry if this is long im just running all these ideas through my head, gonna be reading wiring schematics and crap all night, thanks for any insight.

p.s. im a wannabe mechanic in training so im trying to learn as much as possible, i work at napa so i hope getting parts won't be a problem, i really want to understand why it is doing this, and fix it, ya know kill two birds with one stone kinda thing.

Josh
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post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old 04-18-2006, 12:30 AM
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Coul dbe a number of things. Loose wire, foreign object in gas tank blocking inlet, cam sensor, PCM, ign switch.....

Might be best to take it to a GM dealer. If its electrical, tracing the issues yourself can be a time consuming task.

Better yet, just sell it and never buy a cavalier/sunfire/sunbord again.
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post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old 04-18-2006, 12:45 AM
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OSN says you need a scope.

Moparboyy will chime in eventually, but he's probably passed out between 2 fatties at the moment.

It sounds purely electrical to me, since she lost her power steering and all the lights dimmed. Intermittent electrical gremlins are hell, I had a similar problem for weeks, but only on start up. I replaced the battery and alternator first, then the starter before I gave up and it went to the dealer. It was in and out 3 times before they figured out it was an ignition relay. If only I had that damned scope.
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post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old 04-18-2006, 12:56 AM Thread Starter
cornfields are boring
 
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ha, yeah after reading through some of the other auto related threads i hope to avoid causing any more trouble, and i plan on avoiding the dealer purely due to the fact that she is 16, has very little money and i can get parts at just above cost, so i could replace like a million "things" before even adding up to the cost of the dealer just opening the hood.
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post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old 04-18-2006, 11:12 AM
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Sounds crazy, but I had a bad battery cause a similar situation in a dodge pickup. Only difference is that sometimes it would crank without starting. Turned out that the battery had a "dead cell". If possible check the voltage to the ecm for any sudden drops.
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post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old 04-18-2006, 12:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Red96
adding up to the cost of the dealer just opening the hood.
hey now.. we are cheap over here at the dealer.. its only $95 to open the hood.. and i'll even close it for free!


Onto your problem at hand;

I'm not down with all of GM's little quirks of what it common to go bad on those cars. But if you have any type of scanner that would help out a TON. check for codes, and if you can watch sensors while it dies out that would help out even more. There are way too many things on the car to just start replacing parts.

i would start with the basics.. fuel pressure and spark..

Quote:
Originally Posted by jimzx9r
Moparboyy will chime in eventually, but he's probably passed out between 2 fatties at the moment.
you have me confused with WhiteSeat.. i live by the motto of "No fat chicks"

-Mopar

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2013 Dodge Dart Rallye

Last edited by MoparBoyy; 04-18-2006 at 12:20 PM.
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post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old 04-18-2006, 12:18 PM
CLSB's Florida Chapter.
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dirtbiker
Sounds crazy, but I had a bad battery cause a similar situation in a dodge pickup. Only difference is that sometimes it would crank without starting. Turned out that the battery had a "dead cell". If possible check the voltage to the ecm for any sudden drops.
yup.. used to see that a bunch.. or the it would start and run, but it just woun't hold an idle.. turns out.. dead cell in the battery

-Mopar

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post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old 04-18-2006, 12:33 PM
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Sounds electrical, which SUCKS! Do you have any decent shops in that area? I know of a good one up here, fixed my electrical gremlin for *relatively* cheap. But it's up in Round Lake Beach, that's...150,000 miles from Aurora!

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post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old 04-18-2006, 01:59 PM Thread Starter
cornfields are boring
 
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Good deal $95 to open the hood, Village Pontiac probably wants $95 to show me the release, ha, anyway my buddy is a tech, and has an expensive fancy ass scanner so we're gonna watch the car in real time and try to pick out any sensors that are acting out of line, and i'll read through all the tsb's at work tonight. We're hopefully going to plug it in tomorrow. Whats killing me is i can't get the car to do it again. It won't die, damn thing. I don't want to give it back and have it do it again. I had the module tested, twice, and it passed looking at stupid shit now, the fuse for the ignition looked kinda corroded, so i cleaned that up, cleaned all the connectors to the control module itself, looking for exposed/frayed wires, just agravating i know why they pay the real mechanics so well , anyway thanks for the advice mopar and all, i appreciate it.

Josh
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post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old 04-18-2006, 02:31 PM
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I seem to remember reading that some of those old GMs had problems with the ignition switch being overly sensitive. Try jiggling the key and see if it will die.

-Mike
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post #11 of 15 (permalink) Old 04-18-2006, 02:48 PM
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Yes, Ignition switch...
Does the key have one of those chips in there?
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post #12 of 15 (permalink) Old 04-18-2006, 03:08 PM
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I think it was 97 or 98 and newer pontiacs that have the chip on the key, a pencil eraser will clean it.
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post #13 of 15 (permalink) Old 04-18-2006, 03:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Red96
i know why they pay the real mechanics so well

-Mopar

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post #14 of 15 (permalink) Old 04-18-2006, 07:51 PM
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post #15 of 15 (permalink) Old 04-18-2006, 09:44 PM Thread Starter
cornfields are boring
 
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Thanks guys, i was thinking ignition switch, but was not sure how to isolate it,now that i know they may have had some problems i'll take a closer look at it. no chip in the key but i will try jiggling the key while it is running see if i can kill it that way, i have the column ripped apart because i was looking at the connections at the switch earlier

Josh
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