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Once again car keeps cutting off, AFTER being fixed... ;(

freaksessionfreaksession Posts: 9
edited March 2014 in Pontiac
#1 of 2 A new problem. ;( Car cutting off again, after fixed. by freaksession Sep 24, 2003 (10:50 pm)
At first my problem was it kept cutting off in when it was still like at a stop sign, red light, or in park.

I replaced fuel filter, air filter, and cleaned out the fuel injection unit.

Now about 4 days later, while driving the car will just cut off on me completely. The weird thing is, it will start right back up. At first I was letting it come to a stop then starting in park, but now I learned I can put it in neutral and start it while it's rolling so I am doing that now. Within the last 2 hours it cut off 4 times, but not at all within the last 20 minutes of driving it home.

The only lights that are on is the check engine light & the change oil light. But the oil is full, so I don't know what the hell is wrong.

I'm really hoping I didn't get a lemon. I only had this car for about 2 months and have put over $400 into it ALREADY for repairs (not including over $500 the insurance covered). I am about ready to get my money back already.

Bottom line, I need help, and Pontiac is not too good of a manufacturer when it comes to vehicles. Everybody I know stays away from them. I hope someone can prove this different and help me get to the bottom of it.


  • alcanalcan Posts: 2,550
    What year Grand Am, which engine?
  • swschradswschrad Posts: 2,171
    sounds crazy, but I once had choke and puke issues with my 76 buick that just wouldn't go away. acted just like a badly gunked fuel filter, so I replaced it... and by golly, I didn't get two miles and I had the issue again! called for a wrecker.

    the second fuel filter got it. apparently a bunch of yuck had decided to detach and travel through the fuel lines from the tank.

    those were little thimble-sized things, and your modern fuel filter is much larger, but could be the same thing. there were a lot of jeep posts about a year ago about fuel goop that suddenly appears, and it was apparently old gunk that slipped off the fuel tank and started plugging things.

    it's not impossible that there could be a bunch of crud on the filter sock over the fuel pickup in the tank, too. just for the randy halibut, did you have the car working with a nearly full tank, and now it's down to a half tank or less and isn't getting out of its own way?

    could be a fuel pump going out, too... which is why I think having a pressure test of the fuel rail is a good idea.
  • Yes I just replaced the fuel filter, AC filter, and cleaned out the fuel injection thing which was pretty dirty so I don't think it can be the actual filter. The first filter I had before replacing this one did have a lot of junk in it though, cause when we took it off and turned it over then blew through one end, and lot of stuff fell out.

    I am going to get that diagnostics check done soon by a friend who said he'll do it for $45. I heard autozone does an electrical check free, so I'm about to call them also.
  • When I went to them, they hooked that little handheld code reader to my car and it gave me these problems:

    #1. IAT - B Circuit Malfunction / EGR Temperature sensor circuit

    #2. Fuel System for Bank 1 was too rich (Bank 1 identified the location of cylinder #1, while Bank 2 identifies the cylinders on the opposite bank).
  • alcanalcan Posts: 2,550
    Probably a disconnected or defective air intake temp sensor, or it's associated wiring. Did you get the specific code #'s?
  • For my car it was:

    P1404 = IAT - B Circuit Malfunction / EGR Temperature sensor circuit

    P0172 = Fuel System for Bank 1 was too rich (Bank 1 identified the location of cylinder #1, while Bank 2 identifies the cylinders on the opposite bank)
  • alcanalcan Posts: 2,550
    GM's fault description is:
    Document ID# 288258
    1999 Pontiac Grand Am

    DTC P1404 Exhaust Gas Recirculation (EGR) Closed Position Performance

    The linear EGR valve on this engine can be prone to sticking slightly open from carbon buildup on the pintle. Have it removed and checked for the pintle not completely closing. It will create a lean air-fuel mixture that can cause erratic idle or engine stall, and also cause the P0172 code to set as the PCM tries to compensate for the lean mixture by over-fuelling.
  • I just brought it in to Pontiac to let them do the diagnostics so I can see what the warranty and things will cover.

    I'll report back with what they find. ;)
  • It turned out to be

    bad vacuum hose

    bad E.G.R. valve
  • It's a 99' Car and this is the 3rd time I had to fix things already and it hasn't been two months. I am probably going to return it soon and trade for somemthing else, and if that won't work I'll have to bring forth an attorney. The warranty is supposed to cover a lot of stuff they are refusing to cover some people are telling me.

    I am going to have to stay away from Pontiac, because I keep hearing sooo many horror stories about them, and I put WAYYY too much down to be dealing with this already.
  • burdawgburdawg Posts: 1,524
    Welcome to the world of used car ownership! BTW, how many miles?
  • It's currently at 77,950.

    I purchased it at I believe 76,4??
  • swschradswschrad Posts: 2,171
    and it generally starts between 60,000 and 80,000 miles. on the cars I've had, there are bunch of niggling little $100-180 issues, and then things levelled off for me until sometime after 100,000.

    that's really just life with older cars... sometimes the previous owner doing all maintenance exactly when due will postpone it a little, sometimes not.

    if the history of the car has been basically a surprise every other month from 20 or 30 thousand miles onwards, that's a clear sign it's time to trade it, or win the lottery.

    your local pontiac dealer may be talked into looking at the recorded service history of the car in the GM computers... but if most of it was done elsewhere, that won't show much. also some companies may delete those things after warranty is way over. he can certainly check the VIN to see if there were any recall jobs done against the car, those have to be saved forever, and is at least one indicator of whether the previous owner(s) ever gave a hoot. unperformed recalls, if any, is a clear indication the previous owner(s) not only didn't give a hoot, but probably neglected the machine completely.

    I would not expect any, but if you're really looking for some peace of mind at this point, it can't hurt to ask 'em to look the data up.
  • Thanks a lot for that feedback. When I went to pickup my car earlier today, the people that ran the test said everything else was fine except for those 2 things. I am wondering if any of that ties into what autozone's codes pulled up.

    Judging from how I speak of these things and all, I'm guessing you'll can tell I'm pretty young and new to the car thing. Well... I'm in my VERY early 20's and this is my first car (to call mine anyways) so I'm practically new to everything about it. I just learned how to change my oil recently with pops. ;)

    I have the attitude that a car should be able to just ride... well... forever, but hopefully this is the last problem I have for some time. I guess I just learned a lesson, don't put your heart into it too much (unless it's a racing car you built or something of that nature) and dont get dependant on it TOO MUCH cause when it's down... WHEW!! It's like my whole life just stopped at once the minute I couldn't just hop in my car and drive with no worries. I'm still spoiled though, cause I don't EVER want to stand around waiting on a bus again. Especially depending on it for school... man... when it rains (thunderstorms and such) and/or it's cold, or even both... + limit on days you can be late or miss class = very hard time in my studies indeed.
  • swschradswschrad Posts: 2,171
    it would not be a real bad idea to have one of those dollar ponchos, an umbrella, older and possibly ratty at the edges set of warm outerclothes, gloves and a hat, stuffed under a seat in a bag, or slipped into a corner of the trunk if you get let down by the car someplace.

    these days of near-universal cellphones, you always have a friend nearby... especially if last year's yellow pages are also stuck in that bag.

    in 34 years of driving, I have been stuck at the side of the road five times. got myself going twice again, with help of a few friends mysteriously encountered in the depths of South Dakota at 11 PM in a sleetstorm once more, but that's life. one of those times I had to replace a thermostat housing gasket, another an oil filter, and once a flat tire due to wayhacks who let my air out at 20 below. but that's because I carry a few tools and supplies, and it's a lot easier (if more expensive) to call somebody else and ride a warm tow truck. had to do that once for a timing set that wore out.

    what I'm really saying is keep an eye on the car, especially the fluids, check them regularly... and if your schedule gets blown away once in a rare while, well, screw it. be safe, stay alive, don't have a heart attack over the small stuff... I've already done that for ya ;)
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