Randomly cuts off

Tiny
JANA98
  • MEMBER
  • 1996 PONTIAC GRAND AM
  • 2.4L
  • 4 CYL
  • 2WD
  • MANUAL
  • 190,600 MILES
It runs and drives great when it wants. Let me explain, I’ll be driving then out of nowhere, all of my dashboard lights will pop up then my car shuts down. After about 10 minutes I’m able to start it right back up and again it drives fine. (I had this problem twice before replacing the battery)



Now, yesterday my boyfriend had the car. It’s cuts off after being on and driving lucky he was at a stop sign. The car did everything I explained above but this time it wouldn’t start. After pushing it to safety and waiting 30 minutes to an hour it again started right back up, I drove it home (about 5 miles) it shuts off again. Marking a total of 2 yesterday alone.

I took it to my mechanic this morning and he literally has no idea. He wants to keep it for a cold start tomorrow but I don’t think it’s gonna make a difference considering it’s not a starting problems. It’s starts fine, it’s the random “shutting off". When this happens, the radio works, the heat works, everything works but it really not start. I tried the resetting of the system leaving it in the "on" position for 10 minutes and repeating.

Since this is my only car and I do have to get back and forth to work for the next months, I’m down to playing Russian roulette. I really only drive it about 10 miles back and forth to work. Tonight after work, I pulled in and again it did everything I explained but this time, I put my car in neutral and switch to the "on" position, I waited 30 seconds and the car started right up but the theft system light was lit up. It wasn’t blinking at all, It stayed on until, I cut the car completely off and restarted it.

After reading similar posts here, I wanna sum it up to an faulty ignition switch causing the theft system to think it’s being stolen. I’m not 100% sure but I do not know what else it could be considering everything is new, the starter, the battery, the fuel pump and injectors, the alternator.

Thank you for your time.
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Thursday, February 13th, 2020 AT 10:30 PM

3 Replies

Tiny
JOETECHPRO
  • EXPERT
Hey JANA98,

Does it cut out instantly or stumble and then shut off?

I would advise you need to first work out whether you are losing spark or fuel pressure (or both) when the fault occurs.

Once it has stalled remove a plug and check for spark as in the link below:

https://www.2carpros.com/articles/how-to-test-an-ignition-system

Do you have spark when the vehicle cranks but will not start?

If you do then check fuel pressure.

If you can access a fuel gauge you will need to route the gauge so that you can see it from inside the car and then monitor the fuel pressure.

Fuel pressure should be 41-47psi

Let us know which you are missing and we can run you though checking the system.

Regards, Joe
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Thursday, February 13th, 2020 AT 11:14 PM
Tiny
JANA98
  • MEMBER
It s an instant cut out. No stumbles. I have about a 30 second warning. The gauges goes crazy then it s instant.
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Friday, February 14th, 2020 AT 6:55 AM
Tiny
JOETECHPRO
  • EXPERT
Hey JANA98,

If you could upload a video of what happens when it stalls that would be great.

Have you already checked for engine management fault codes?

I would advise this is a good starting point if not done already.

Guide below:

https://www.2carpros.com/articles/checking-a-service-engine-soon-or-check-engine-light-on-or-flashing

The OBD II port is shown in the picture attached, labeled as the DLC.

Regards, Joe
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Friday, February 14th, 2020 AT 2:44 PM

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