Sounds like you have more than one problem, but mostly it sounds like you have multiple Electric related problems. Have you checked connections on Ignition COIL, that will cause car to caught-off, especially if you have a Bad, Ignition COIL Wire. Replace all your wires, distibutor cap, and rotor, if they are due. The DCL light is an INTERNAL electrical problem, supposedly a loose connection between the Electronic Display Dashboard panel, and the PCM, which is the cars computer. That needs to be traced behind the Dashboard, and the whole damn thing needs to be removed. But this is a common problem with cars or this age, the wiring trunk stretchs/contrats overtime, causing these problems, that creep up over time.
Probably a coincedense, that it just happened, my Check DCL is always coming on, but it does not interfere with the operations of the car, just the display information is all screwed up, such as Trip, DTE, economy/mileage estimates on display.
If you get no readings after hooking up a diagnostic analyzer to the car, its probably because Power to the PCM/car computer is interrupted. It will not give any codes without any power, if the PCM or any relay prior to the PCM relay in the circuit, such as an Anti-theft relay will interrupt power. I had a similar incident with a Ranger, my brother-inlaws, he pulled a relay out, killed the truck, took it to Pep-Boys, they could not read anything from the Computer. I studied the Schematics, and analyzed the problem was either with the Starter Relay, Starter Interrupt Relay, PCM Relay, or finally the Anti-theft Relay in that order from the Power distribution panel.
It turned out that it was the PCM relay, that killed the car computer, it could not get power.
I hope this helps, I am not an expert, but have worked on several cars, read a lot of repair manuals from Hayes and Chilton, and do most if not all of my own repairs. But NOT by choice, but by necessity. === Alfredo Alaniz
Sunday, May 10th, 2009 AT 9:02 PM