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Old 09-10-2007, 01:21 AM   #1
allen57
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Default engine dies

i was driving my 97 saturn, and it just all of a sudden dies. right before it died i noticed it sputtered then rpms jump all around. i stopped and tried to restart, it cranked longer than usual. then started but kept dropping rpms, i reved it but it dropped while reving. it didnt seemed like a miss, more like it lost fuel. im thinking the fuel filter is bad, because the car sat for a year and the fuel might have geled and got some in the filter. could this be right?

by the way it has 100,000 miles, but a rebuilt 94 engine, that i swapped like a week or 2 ago
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Old 09-10-2007, 02:51 AM   #2
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Default Re: engine dies

It's more likely the fuel pump.

Get a fuel pressure gauge and use it.
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Old 09-10-2007, 04:32 AM   #3
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Default Re: engine dies

Quote:
Originally Posted by amazinghl View Post
It's more likely the fuel pump.

Get a fuel pressure gauge and use it.
I agree, however this is pretty much exactly what happend to my car while driving down the freeway one day a few years ago before it was my car. (It's a 95 SL2)

The problem was the alternator.

I would've never found out if it hadn't failed completely a few months later.
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Old 09-10-2007, 05:51 AM   #4
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Default Re: engine dies

Change the fuel filter. A quickie fuel pressure check would be to turn on the ignition and let the fuel pump pressurize for the 2-3 seconds, find the fuel test valve on the fuel rail and cover it with a rag before depressing it. There should be a healthy spray of fuel coming out otherwise check it with a pressure gauge. If you're in doubt of the fuel gelling after running a few tanks of fuel through since the engine swap you can always drain some fuel via the fuel filter; remove the inlet line to the filter and place the line into a container, turn on the ignition, remove the fuel pump relay and carefully short the relay socket pins 30 and 87 together. This powers up the fuel pump continuously until you remove the jumper. It won't clear the fuel rail or injectors as you'll have to take those apart for cleaning.
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Old 09-10-2007, 10:53 AM   #5
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1995 SL2
Default Re: engine dies

I had the identical problem in my 95 SL2 until this past weekend.
This is what I did:
(just as fdryer said) Turned key to on for a few seconds, listened for pump noise, heard nothing.
Pressed shradder (sp) valve - no spray = no fuel pressure confirmed
Checked/swapped fuse under dash, ok
Swapped Hvac/Fuelpump relay - Bingo!

It might not work for you, but it's worth a shot. It's free after all, and not even messy.
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Old 09-10-2007, 12:20 PM   #6
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Default Re: engine dies

Restricted exhaust, maybe?
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Old 09-10-2007, 04:21 PM   #7
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Default Re: engine dies

oh ya. i started the car a couple hours later and it started up fine and ran fine. also did it this morning and it ran fine again.
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Old 09-10-2007, 04:24 PM   #8
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Default Re: engine dies

Quote:
Originally Posted by oseberg View Post
I agree, however this is pretty much exactly what happend to my car while driving down the freeway one day a few years ago before it was my car. (It's a 95 SL2)

The problem was the alternator.

I would've never found out if it hadn't failed completely a few months later.

i would be pissed if it was an alternator, i was actually fixing my friends car at the moment because he had a bad alternator, it would suck if my car died because of the same problem while fixing his.
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Old 09-14-2007, 01:01 AM   #9
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Default Re: engine dies

well i tried the valve and no fuel came out. i changed my fuel pump and filter, i tried the valve again, and some came out but it wasnt a healthy spray, im still having the same problems, the car will hestitate and sputter, but it doesnt die as often now. what else should i look for. btw i changed my spark plug while doing the filter

more info. i was driving it today, and it sputtered a bit, so i floored it, got to 4grand, and it just stayed there for a few seconds, then caught(service engine light went on when it caught) and went again, shifted at 5500ish when i let off. i got it home, opened the hood,and played with the throttle, if i open it to fast, it would stumble then go not like before, but it would do okish if i didnt open it fast.

it also feels like my tranny is acting wierd, it shifts harsh from 2nd to 3rd and if its in normal mode, when i 3/4th throttle it, it will kickdown for a sec, jump back up a gear, then kickdown again then go. i dont remember if this is normal, i havent driven it in almost a year, and im almost alway in performance mode.

i tested my alternator with my multimeter and its putting out almost 14 volts so i know thats good, but i checked my bat. voltage and its at 12.56, i havent load tested it yet, so im not sure if its bad. but i havent had any electrical problems yet.

just trying to write as much as i can so u can help me better
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Old 09-14-2007, 01:08 AM   #10
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Default Re: engine dies

Quote:
Originally Posted by allen57 View Post
well i tried the valve and no fuel came out. i changed my fuel pump and filter, i tried the valve again, and some came out but it wasnt a healthy spray, im still having the same problems, the car will hestitate and sputter, but it doesnt die as often now. what else should i look for. btw i changed my spark plug while doing the filter

more info. i was driving it today, and it sputtered a bit, so i floored it, got to 4grand, and it just stayed there for a few seconds, then caught(service engine light went on when it caught) and went again, shifted at 5500ish when i let off. i got it home, opened the hood,and played with the throttle, if i open it to fast, it would stumble then go not like before, but it would do okish if i didnt open it fast.

it also feels like my tranny is acting wierd, it shifts harsh from 2nd to 3rd and if its in normal mode, when i 3/4th throttle it, it will kickdown for a sec, jump back up a gear, then kickdown again then go. i dont remember if this is normal, i havent driven it in almost a year, and im almost alway in performance mode.

i tested my alternator with my multimeter and its putting out almost 14 volts so i know thats good, but i checked my bat. voltage and its at 12.56, i havent load tested it yet, so im not sure if its bad. but i havent had any electrical problems yet.

just trying to write as much as i can so u can help me better
A bad battery or leaking terminal(positive on mine) will cause all kinds of wierdness starting with the tranny....did you have the code read for the SES light? take the battery somewhere and have it tested unless you can do that yourself......
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Old 09-14-2007, 10:04 AM   #11
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Default Re: engine dies

The next check would be cleaning the throttle body if its not been cleaned. Remove the EGR valve for cleaning also as this may be sticking and contributing to the stumbling hesitation above idling speed. The exhaust port on the engine block may have enough exhaust deposits that can also interfere with EGR valve operation. Some have reported that running with the EGR valve off the block blew out the deposits and helped the EGR valve and engine run better afterwards. The noise will be loud at idle. You might want to try it as long as the EGR valve's out for general cleaning before putting it back on the engine.

The EGR valve's sole function is to help emissions by lowering the combustion temperature to reduce oxides of nitrogen. When the EGR valve becomes coated with carbon from the exhaust it will act sluggish by allowing too much exhaust at the wrong time messing up the air/fuel ratio, stumbling, stalling, hesitation, including erratic transmission shifting that would be misinterpreted as a tranny problem. The infamous cracked coolant sensor does similar shenanigans with the engine and transmission.
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Old 09-15-2007, 09:51 PM   #12
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Default Re: engine dies

well i took it to my old high school autoshop (i just graduated) and used there modis. found out my MAP sensor only had .55volts all the time( suppose to be 1 to 5 volts depending on throttle and load) turned out my MAP wasnt fully connected , now it runs fine. thanks for all the help
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Old 09-16-2007, 10:44 AM   #13
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Default Re: engine dies

Quote:
Originally Posted by allen57 View Post
well i took it to my old high school autoshop (i just graduated) and used there modis. found out my MAP sensor only had .55volts all the time( suppose to be 1 to 5 volts depending on throttle and load) turned out my MAP wasnt fully connected , now it runs fine. thanks for all the help
You Might be wondering what a "Modis" is, below is a description of the $7,700.00 item which can be purchased through Snap-On:
51482.JPG.jpg

Description:
Modular Diagnostic Information System (EEMS300F12IN)

Only the MODIS™ system gives you so many critical tools: Domestic, Asian Import, European* and Heavy Duty* scan tool applications, full function lab scope with ignition, and digital graphing multimeter, all driven by the most expert information in your business. And because the MODIS™ system is designed to grow and expand—to never go out of date—it keeps up with the latest advances in automotive technology.

MODIS features
• Proven Windows CE operating system expands system, accessory, and communication opportunities
• Shop tough ergonomic design features impact resistant 7” color full VGA display, rugged housing and rubber end grips
• Modular Scanner™ and lab scope plug-ins with independent processors provide simultaneous data acquisition
• Classic Y and N buttons for intuitive navigation
• Modular design with VGA, serial, USB and infrared ports plus two Compact Flash® slots
• Screen capture capabilities from all diagnostic applications make building a reference library easy

Scanner™ Vehicle Communication
• Global OBD with nine OBD-II modes for all vehicle makes
• 1980 and later enhanced coverage for GM, Ford and Chrysler
• 1983 and later enhanced coverage for 13 Asian Import makes

Fast-Track® Troubleshooter Software
• Domestic Driveability Fast-Track® Troubleshooter
• Domestic Transmission Fast-Track® Troubleshooter
• Asian Import Driveability Fast-Track® Troubleshooter
• Asian Import Transmission Fast-Track® Troubleshooter
• Anti-lock Brake Fast-Track® Troubleshooter

Fast-Track® Component Tests
• Coverage as far back as 1979 for over 30 vehicle makes
• Vehicle-specific component tests provide MODIS™ instrumentation with Fast-Track® information:
- Test procedures
- Technical tips and best practices
- Test lead hook-up instructions and pictures
- Connector diagrams
- Component locations
- Pre-configured scope, graphing multimeter, and digital meter instrumentation
- Reference waveforms

Lab and Ignition Scope
• Lab scope captures 6 million samples every second across four channels
• Ignition scope includes 5-millisecond multiple secondary parade, raster, superimposed, and single cylinder views
• Digital readouts display voltage at any selected point on the waveform along with minimum and maximum values
• Snapshot continuously saves up to 263 sweeps into a buffer for review
• AC coupling enlarges the alternating current (AC) component of a signal for closer examination
• Invert flips the waveform to provide flexible hookup options and easier viewing
• Auto-find preconfigures the vertical scale automatically
• Factory and custom presets provide automatic configuration for common sensors, actuators and circuits tests

Digital Volt-Ohm Meter (DVOM)
• Auto scaling, high-impedance measurement system
• Pinpoint measurement of DC volts, AC Volts RMS, Ohms and Continuity with audible beep
• Out-of-calibration condition turns display red
• Min and Max capture displays drop and peak values

Options
Rev up the power even higher with these options!
• European Vehicle Communication Kit including BMW, Mercedes-Benz and Volkswagen/Audi
• Heavy Duty Vehicle Communication Software Kit provides codes and data for medium and heavy duty trucks over 14,000 lbs. GVW
• Flexible 5-Gas Analyzer offers BAR97 accuracy for fuel system diagnostics
• Technical Service Bulletins
...
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Old 09-16-2007, 10:54 AM   #14
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Default Re: engine dies

Quote:
Originally Posted by allen57 View Post
well i took it to my old high school autoshop (i just graduated) and used there modis. found out my MAP sensor only had .55volts all the time( suppose to be 1 to 5 volts depending on throttle and load) turned out my MAP wasnt fully connected , now it runs fine. thanks for all the help
Timing is everything!

I just saw this post for the first time and almost didn't read through it before replying. I had the identical problem earlier this year after overheating the engine. Turned out to be a bad MAP sensor. The thing didn't throw any codes either until I had changed a number of other parts.

Glad that you got it solved.
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