1989 Pontiac Grand Prix Engine not running

Tiny
PHANTOM01
  • MEMBER
  • 1989 PONTIAC GRAND PRIX
Engine Mechanical problem
1989 Pontiac Grand Prix 6 cyl Two Wheel Drive Automatic

I have a 1989 Grand Prix with a 2.8L. It recently quit on me while accelerating out of a parking lot into traffic. Now it won't stay running. Has new fuel pump, is getting spark, checked the TPS, IAC, MAP, ECM, all is good. It gives a MAP code but I tried a different MAP to no avail. It will turn over and start but runs like it is on 2 cylinders and as soon as you give it gas it quits.I am pointing toward timing issue now but I cant find a timing mark on the crank pully so how do I check the timing. Any thoughts?
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Friday, July 24th, 2009 AT 3:05 PM

24 Replies

Tiny
MMPRINCE4000
  • EXPERT
Start by checking fuel pressure with a mechanical gauge.
Also check the fuel pressure regulator for gas in the vacuum line.
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Sunday, July 26th, 2009 AT 8:08 AM
Tiny
PHANTOM01
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I do not have a fuel pressure gauge but I just put a new fuel pump on it thinking that was the problem. Checked vacuum lines also, no fuel in them. Is the timing marks four circle indentations on the pulley?It really acts like it jumped time, How do I check that?
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Sunday, July 26th, 2009 AT 2:25 PM
Tiny
MMPRINCE4000
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Timing mark on balancer should have a dab of white paint on it or a "nick" on the pulley.

Timing is set by grounding terminals A and B of diagnostic link. Then check timing with inductive timing light.

If you cannot find TDC #1, then remove #1 spark plug, rotate engine by hand with socket and ratchet on balancer bolt, put finger in #1 hole, when you feel air coming out you are approaching TDC and timing marks should align. Use some chalk or paint and mark them.
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Monday, July 27th, 2009 AT 8:42 AM
Tiny
PHANTOM01
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Ya, thats what I thought, so I did that and put a mark on the pulley but now the thing won't run to check the timing.I can't think of anything else to check. Hate to tear into it for timing chain and that not be it. Allready wasted my time and $100 on the fuel pump.
Like I stated earlier when it does start it just chugs and studders like on 2 cyclinders for about 15-20 seconds and quits or when you give it gas it quits.

It's getting gas and spark, just acts like jumped timing. Any other thoughts. Thanks
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Monday, July 27th, 2009 AT 5:48 PM
Tiny
PHANTOM01
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Unplugged all the sensors(thinking the ecm might be froze) and still getting same result. Just trying anything here. Any thoughts?
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Tuesday, July 28th, 2009 AT 11:13 PM
Tiny
PHANTOM01
  • MEMBER
Do you have to remove the starter and oil pan to do timing chain?
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+1
Tuesday, July 28th, 2009 AT 11:26 PM
Tiny
MMPRINCE4000
  • EXPERT
When you connect A and B terminals of ALDL it will move the IAC to the fully closed position and remove all computer advance from the ECM. The idle will drop to about 500-600 rpm, but car should run.

I would take the IAC out and clean it and the base it fits into, as well as the EGR valve. EGR flow at idle will kill the engine.

I doubt it is a timing chain issue, although it could be loose, and may affect timing a degree or two.
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Wednesday, July 29th, 2009 AT 7:56 AM
Tiny
PHANTOM01
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I cleaned the IAC. Can't get the thing to run to connect the A and B terminals.I tried unhooking the EGR vac line and ECM connect, no help.
I will try taking it off and clean it
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Wednesday, July 29th, 2009 AT 2:02 PM
Tiny
PHANTOM01
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Cleaned the EGR, didn't help.
However I went back and rechecked ignition and found the spark is orange not blue.(First time I checked with a spark plug and was getting spark. So I thought that was good)
Does that mean ignition module?
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Wednesday, July 29th, 2009 AT 5:33 PM
Tiny
MMPRINCE4000
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You can have the module testes at most autoparts stores for free, have them run the test at least twice.

It could also be the coils, spark should be blue.
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Thursday, July 30th, 2009 AT 8:31 AM
Tiny
PHANTOM01
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Coils all checked good as well as the module
what is the cause of orange spark? Only thing left is the cps
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Friday, July 31st, 2009 AT 6:30 PM
Tiny
MMPRINCE4000
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IF coils and module are good, check grounds to block. Plugs ground to block and if ground is bad, they will either not fire or fire will be weak.

Also check wires, high resistance will cause weak spark.
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Saturday, August 1st, 2009 AT 7:46 AM
Tiny
PHANTOM01
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Have checked all the grounds. What are the chances all 6 plug wires go bad at same time?

Getting the orange spark on all wires
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Saturday, August 1st, 2009 AT 11:53 AM
Tiny
MMPRINCE4000
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Check resistance on wires, most factory wires are about 5000 ohms per foot.

If resistance exceeds that, then replace them. Wires like anything else in engine compartment go through thousands of heat cycles and do fail.
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Sunday, August 2nd, 2009 AT 7:47 AM
Tiny
PHANTOM01
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All check good
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Sunday, August 2nd, 2009 AT 3:18 PM
Tiny
MMPRINCE4000
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How many ohms did the wires read?

Have you checked all ignition connections to the coils, and module for frayed wires?
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Monday, August 3rd, 2009 AT 8:53 AM
Tiny
PHANTOM01
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Checked the crank postion sensor today. It was reading.3-.6 volts while cranking engine
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Thursday, August 6th, 2009 AT 5:08 PM
Tiny
MMPRINCE4000
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If you can get your hands on a scanner, use live data mode to check rpm while cranking, if none or erratic, then crank/cam sensor.
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Friday, August 7th, 2009 AT 8:08 AM
Tiny
PHANTOM01
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It checks good on the meter.I'm thinking timing chain/gear
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Wednesday, August 12th, 2009 AT 2:36 AM
Tiny
MMPRINCE4000
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If equipped with a distributor, then remove cap and hand rotate engine first clockwise then counterclockwise, while watching rotor, if chain is loose you will see a delay in rotor movement.
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Wednesday, August 12th, 2009 AT 9:25 AM

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