Ran fine last night, now nothing - 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 07-05-2006, 03:59 PM   #1
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Default Ran fine last night, now nothing

Hey everyone,

Here'* the problem. Car ran fine last night. Went to drive to work this A.M., and Nothing! Battery is fine, lights were bright, but when I went to crank it up, there was a click, then nothing. The check engine light came on. Is this my starter acting up? Would a bad starter cause a CEL? Or is this a bigger problem. I just had the U&L Intake gaskets replaced a few months ago, and I just changed the oil. Any ideas? One other thing, the owners manual calls for 4.5 quarts of oil, but I accidentaly put 5 in, is that extra .5 quart going to do any damage? Thanks for all your help.
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Old 07-05-2006, 04:01 PM   #2
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Sounds almost like the battery is toast... Have you tried to jumpstart it or used another battery?

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Old 07-05-2006, 04:07 PM   #3
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Yes, I tried to jump start it, and same thing, one click sound, and then nothing. the voltage meter on the dash reads a full charge.
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Old 07-05-2006, 04:09 PM   #4
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I'd check the cables etc. Ensure good connections. Double check battery like mentioned above..then check starter.

If you have a friend available..you could try the hold the key while the other beats the starter trick. Although like we saw last week and myself a few weeks before (Cfootes car) that doesn't always work.
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Old 07-05-2006, 06:04 PM   #5
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Clean the battery cables at the starter, the main ground, and at the battery. You'd be suprised what a dirty connection can do (or not do in this matter).
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Old 07-05-2006, 06:10 PM   #6
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thanks for the help everybody. i came home from work today, and still nothing. i decided to try one more time before calling it a day, and vroooom...it was like nothing ever happened. I think it may have been the VATS, so i'm gonna use my other key from now on. hopefully this won't happen again and leave me stranded somewhere! thanks again for all your help!
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Old 07-05-2006, 09:24 PM   #7
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You can clean the key pellet with rubbing alcohol on a cotton swap. Or, you could use an eraser.

Just because it worked one time I wouldn't stop researching the root cause.
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Old 07-06-2006, 12:03 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by webbman81
thanks for the help everybody. i came home from work today, and still nothing. i decided to try one more time before calling it a day, and vroooom...it was like nothing ever happened. I think it may have been the VATS, so i'm gonna use my other key from now on. hopefully this won't happen again and leave me stranded somewhere! thanks again for all your help!
But you didn't say that the security light stayed on after the failed attempt to start (it should take 3 tries to start position before it quits completely). I've had some strange one try failure with the VATS on my 98. I think it may be the starter switch not keeping or making contact for power to the VATS computer and causing a no try to start on first attempt.

I also have 138K miles and for a year the starter has been slightly off sounding when starting sometimes--thought it was my 5-6 year old MAXX battery from WallyWorld with 7 year warranty. Found out few weeks ago it didn't crank right for a split second a couple of starts over couple of days then the speed of crank was fine. One night it didn't do anything. Friend even applied power directly to starter terminal to bypass all the cables and nothing. Usually GM starters make it to 200K miles he said.

You could just have starter problem. Rebuilder said the oil on it sometimes gets inside and causes contact failures. Do you have oil hanging on oil pan bolts above the starter?
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