Need guidance

  • 1.8L
  • V6
  • FWD
  • 141,000 MILES

I was recently given this car by my brother who has had it sitting for 2 years w/o starting it up. His daughter had it for a year and a half and he was tired of putting money in it so he parked it, it was running fine at the time although he mentioned that sometimes when she would go out there the car wouldn't start and/or take a long time to start. Only one time it didn't start after a few minutes and they ended up towing it but it didn't completely stop working and he never checked to see what the issue was. We ended up having to fix a 3 way pipe and replace the fan because the red temp light was on and it had coolant leaking while it had been sitting. We also replaced the battery as it was completely dead. Hibdon did a courtesy check and the only issue they found was the coolant issues that we fixed. It has been driven for the past 3 days and the check engine light came on the first day it had been driven (Tuesday) consistently and has stayed on. The other day it didn't want to start right up but after a few minutes just like my brother said it finally did. This morning same thing however someone had the idea to jump it and it actually worked but of course later in the day when it was turned off for a minutes it didn't start back up and currently won't. Suggestions. Please
Friday, August 26th, 2016 AT 3:01 PM

1 Reply

  • 20,758 POSTS
If you haven't already replaced the battery, that should have been the first thing after sitting that long.

The "check engine" light is an indicator for a system that monitors many electronic functions in the system, also called the "malfunction indicator lamp" (MIL). It can come on for any of hundreds of different causes from any of the systems that the computer monitors. Some are very important and can lead to further component or engine damage and some are emissions related not as serious but still a problem and need to be repaired.

Your first step is to have the computer scanned to retrieve the trouble codes that were set when the check engine light came on. Those codes will give you specific information about what the computer saw and will get you pointed in the right direction to find your problem. With a 1996 or newer and some 95 cars and you have an AutoZone or Advanced auto parts in your area, they will read them for free. Once you have these code numbers, we can be a lot more specific about what your problem may be.
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Friday, August 26th, 2016 AT 3:30 PM

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