Emergency mechanical problem...gearheads needed - GM Forum - Buick, Cadillac, Chev, Olds, GMC & Pontiac chat


1992-1999 Series I L27 (1992-1994 SE,SLE, SSE) & Series II L36 (1995-1999 SE, SSE, SLE) and common problems for the Series I and II L67 (all supercharged models 92-99) Including Olds 88's, Olds LSS's and Buick Lesabres Please use General Chat for non-mechanical issues, and Performance and Brainstorming for improvements.

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Old 08-21-2004, 01:41 PM   #1
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Default Emergency mechanical problem...gearheads needed

Hi everyone. I'm actually not asking this for myself (hence why it'* in the 92-99 forum) I'm asking for Nathan (my friend with the 96 SSE who'* been here a few times).

Right now he'* stuck at a convenience store because his car died while he was inside. He'* going to need it towed anyway, I'm sure, but if it'* a quick fix he'll bring it home, and if not, he'll get it to a mechanic. Here'* the deal. It will turn over, but not catch. A couple of times he got it to catch and run for a second or two, but then it just died. He had only driven it today to the store ( less than a mile from home), and it was fine (seemingly) before. Any ideas?

Is there anything I should ask him to help diagnose? I'm at a loss here. Poor guy. :(
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Old 08-21-2004, 01:57 PM   #2
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Coolant levels ASAP. Maybe change the oil and see if there is coolant in it. he has an L36 wich is prone to having the upper intake failure. If you suspect anything is wrong, at all, which is probably 90% or higher the cause of this you shouldn't start the car at all anymore.

Maybe he'* just outta gas? (shot in the dark)
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Old 08-21-2004, 03:16 PM   #3
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Well, he'* going to check the upper intake, but as it was replaced last year (with the problem you described) we're thinking it'* something else. He'* going to pull the alternator and bring it down to someone who can check...

Other suggestions?
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Old 08-21-2004, 06:40 PM   #4
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Could be a fuel delivery problem...
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Old 08-21-2004, 07:47 PM   #5
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Find the schreader valve (looks just like a tire valve) on the fuel rail. Turn the ignition on to energize the fuel pump and pressurize the fuel system. Press the valve in just like your letting air out of a tire (hold a rag over it so you don't get a gas shower). There should be about 45 psi there. If you get nothing or just a trickle, either the fuel pump relay or fuse is bad or the fuel pump is shot. You can also put an ear to the open fuel filler pipe while someone turns the key on. You should be able to hear the fuel pump run for about 2-3 seconds. It will shut off if the engine is not started then turn on again when the engine is cranked. This should give you a good indication of whether it is a fuel delivery problem or not.
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Old 08-22-2004, 02:21 PM   #6
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This is Hailey,
Thanks for all the help.
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Old 08-22-2004, 06:22 PM   #7
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Default Update question...?

Okay...we're thinking after checking the alternator that what we have is a fuel delivery problem, as people have suggested. We're hoping that it'* a problem with the "fuel pump relay" but we don't know where is it in order to replace it. Forgive me if that'* exceptionally vague; we're trying to do this over cell phones while he'* standing in a parking lot at a movie rental store.

Anyway, suggestions? Thanks!
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Old 08-22-2004, 06:25 PM   #8
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Default Re: Emergency mechanical problem...gearheads needed

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hailey
Hi everyone. I'm actually not asking this for myself (hence why it'* in the 92-99 forum) I'm asking for Nathan (my friend with the 96 SSE who'* been here a few times).

Right now he'* stuck at a convenience store because his car died while he was inside. He'* going to need it towed anyway, I'm sure, but if it'* a quick fix he'll bring it home, and if not, he'll get it to a mechanic. Here'* the deal. It will turn over, but not catch. A couple of times he got it to catch and run for a second or two, but then it just died. He had only driven it today to the store ( less than a mile from home), and it was fine (seemingly) before. Any ideas?

Is there anything I should ask him to help diagnose? I'm at a loss here. Poor guy. :(
crank sensor could be related but more then likely i would agree with the fuel problem since i experienced it myself
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Old 08-22-2004, 06:27 PM   #9
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Default Re: Update question...?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lictalon
Okay...we're thinking after checking the alternator that what we have is a fuel delivery problem, as people have suggested. We're hoping that it'* a problem with the "fuel pump relay" but we don't know where is it in order to replace it. Forgive me if that'* exceptionally vague; we're trying to do this over cell phones while he'* standing in a parking lot at a movie rental store.

Anyway, suggestions? Thanks!
This is from my 93 diagram. Should be pretty close to the 96:

Relay center positions:

A-K
B-J
C-H
D-G
E-F

A-Unused
B-LH front door isolation (RPO AU0 only)
C-Rear defogger (SSE & SSEi) Fog lamp cut-out (SE)
D-Trunk release (RPO AU0 only)
E-Retained accessory power #1(RPO KP2 only)
F-Interior lamps (RPO C97 only)
G-Fog lamp
H-Fuel pump
J-Retained accessory power #2(RPO KP2 only)
H-Unused
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Old 08-22-2004, 10:23 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ranger
Find the schreader valve (looks just like a tire valve) on the fuel rail. Turn the ignition on to energize the fuel pump and pressurize the fuel system.
Hmmm... While you're at it, with the engine _off_, pull the vacuum line off the fuel-pressure regulator and see if it pees gasoline at you. If so, that'* your problem; the regulator has sprung a leak in its diaphragm. Inability to do a warm start, while having no problems at all with a cold start, is a classic symptom of that. Been there, done that, got the T-shirt.
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