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GMC Safari/Chevy Astro Starting/Stalling/Idling Problems

cargob00mcargob00m Member Posts: 1
I have a 1998 Chevy Astro, 156,000m this is a recent issue where if it rains heavily during the night my van will not start at all the next morning, I dont seem to be able to hear the fuel pump engaging @ Key on position, I have checked and replaced the fuel pump relay, but still the same problem persists. I am not sure what the culprit could be as the only time i have trouble is when it is very wet out, this has happenned once before after getting to work and trying to leave to go to a jobsite.


  • eatmyinkeatmyink Member Posts: 1
    My Astro just started doing this last night. Does anybody have any ideas?
  • xtremlyfrust8xtremlyfrust8 Member Posts: 1
    I have a 1994 Gmc Safari and I have replace the fuel pump and the fuel filter as well as the fuel pressure regulator I get fuel all the way up into the injector and into the fuel pressure regulator but it still wont start I spray starter fluid into the throttle body it starts until it evaporates then dies DOES ANYBODY HAVE ANY SUGGESTIONS ? :confuse: :mad:
  • jun123jun123 Member Posts: 2
    I have a 1995 gmc safari... they recently change water pump, gas pump and filter but now its leaking gas down the exhaust.... does any one know why this is happening .... my van its been parked on my drive way for too long now and i miss it very much i need to get it running again before starts snowing please if anyone knows i will appreciate any recomendations.... i heard it could be the fuel presure regulator... what u think??? :cry:
  • gilassilvergilassilver Member Posts: 1
    Ok, people. I am new @ this. I am in dire need and I need help. I need a fuel pump for my 1998 GMC SAFARI. Problem is...they are prohibitively expensive and I am a poor parent of 3 children with 1 in college. Anyone has any idea on how to fix/replace the fuel pump in a fashion affordable to me? Thanx so much. Bye.
  • marek416marek416 Member Posts: 1
    My 93 Astro 4.3L quit running one day and won't restart. It has 60 psi of fuel pressure and plenty of spark. It also shows a code 43 which is the electronic spark control system faulty. Replaced the ignition module to no aveil. Anybody have the same problem? :sick:
  • bettyboop4bettyboop4 Member Posts: 1
    I have the same problem with my 2000 astro when it rains the fuel pump doesn't get any voltage. Please if anyone knows why please post it . Thank you
  • fixitrodfixitrod Member Posts: 67
    SO this test is to place a piece of wire or metal(something that will stay in place on it on...like an alligator clip and then hold the boot with a well insulated screwdriver (as in drapped over it ) and gradually move the tip away from the grounded metal surface.(Would insulated pliers help me hold/control it better?---If this is not a good result should I look at new wires or plugs(different brand or premium platinum) that give a better spark or what would help this? Or is there another part which provides this spark. I replaced the ignition coil already.

    If the fuel presssure leaks down before a couple of minutes does that mean the injectors are not providing enough fuel long enough? Could their signal be dropping out too soon or are they bad. Could this be the fuel pump. I heard from another mechanic that this system had lots of problems and has been updated. He was lobbying for work but did say as you that if I am going to do the work myself that to make sure I check everything out before I invest in the updated injectors system. Last time I checked it was about $520.00 and I think its a dealer only item. This current system is CMFI on the 1995 I have. In 1996 they went to CSFI and if it retrofits (and this is the solution maybe I could find a slavage one . The bad news would be if they just changedthe CMFI and only new will work.
    Thanks again...

    On the Explorer I was checking the IAC valve. Since I cleaned it out(carbon buildup) the idle is doing as you describe. It does go to about 1100 before settling down to about 600rpm. It actually was racing up before. I will continue to observe this and if it continues or reoccurs I will clean it again. It may need to be replaced. The TPS (throttle position sensor also had inconsistent voltage but with this improvement it may have nothing to do with the surging/racing idle at this point.
  • electricdesignelectricdesign Member Posts: 681
    "If the fuel presssure leaks down before a couple of minutes does that mean the injectors are not providing enough fuel long enough? Could their signal be dropping out too soon or are they bad. Could this be the fuel pump."

    The fuel pressure leaking down means that the fuel injectors are leaking or their is a leak somewhere in the system. The leaking injectors can cause some flooding of the cylinders, depending on how bad it leaks, because the leaking fuel injector never completely closes and squirts some fuel when it supposed to be closed. The Fuel pressure should NOT leak down, but hold the same pressure for several minutes if the system is "tight" and not leaking. Most common leakage is through the injectors, there could be one or more that is not sealing closed due to dirt in the injector or a sticking injector. In these cases, inspection and cleaning of the injectors is recommended. Other sources of leakage (not common) can be leaking backpressure through the fuel pump or and an external leak. Sometimes the injectors short out and don't open, then it makes that cylinder run lean. I'm glad I drive a Ford, you may notice that the Fords seldom, if ever, have any fuel injection problems.

    On your Explorer, the IAC are common to need cleaning or replacement, poor idle is usually IAC or EGR system or vacuum leak.

    On my Explorer, my 2000 V8 5.0L is starting to give me a P0401 DTC, EGR insuffient flow, so I'll be having to clean the EGR and passages, maybe have to replace the Dpfe.

    Good Luck,
    E.D. ISF
  • fixitrodfixitrod Member Posts: 67
    The plan is to continue with the spark quality and further investigate the "leaking " of the fuel injector system after doing a leak down test on the Safari. This van was a freebie out of my father-in-laws shuttle service fleet and with the money I spent on getting it up to speeed I'll have just about bought it. Its probably going on the sale block as soon as I get it running...getting to the diminishing returns level.

    Its been a couple of days since I cleaned the Explorers IAC valve and the idle has been consistent so thats a good sign.

    We also have a 1998 V8 5.0L and I got that code and and it was the Fuel vapor management hose that was damaged. The unit itself broke while changing the hoses.They and the valve attachments are plastic and this truck has over 200K. It would be nice if I can help you with this information.
  • electricdesignelectricdesign Member Posts: 681
    "We also have a 1998 V8 5.0L and I got that code and and it was the Fuel vapor management hose that was damaged. The unit itself broke while changing the hoses.They and the valve attachments are plastic and this truck has over 200K. It would be nice if I can help you with this information."

    That' nice but it's not a problem right now, it can wait a month or so until I have time to get to it. Right now we have all this Christmas stuff going on, and I just don't have time for anything, unless it's an emergency.

    Keep me posted on the GMC cause Im curious at to what you find, since we've been through almost everything so far.

    Good Luck,
    E.D. ISF
  • fixitrodfixitrod Member Posts: 67
    I pulled the intale manifold tunung valve off and as Lindertech suggested it should show carbon buildup inside the manifold but any wetspots would indicate a leak;I see some wetness.
    The leakdown of the fuel pressure was evident. The psi would rise up to 64 and fall back immediately to 58. It would fall to about 56-57 over the next several minutes. It is said that this system needs 60-61psi at a minimum for proper operation. After I rule out the spark as discussed I am going to pull the manifold and have a look at this fuel injection to be sure of the dampness I see. Its so cramped in the engine bay I am only able to view with a mirror.
    On our 98 V8 explorer by the way which is my wifes daily driver she has complained of a "whistling noise" for several weeks. I changed the chain tensioner and idler arm pullys, cleaned the MAF, throttle body and EGR valve, replaced all hoses and lubricated the drive belt. What else could be causing this annoying sound...fan cluth????
  • electricdesignelectricdesign Member Posts: 681
    When does it make the whistling sound? At Idle? While standing still? While driving down the road? Does it come and go or change pitch or volume with a change in engine speed or with road speed? I am trying to rule out wind noises, as they have been a common complaint in the past.

    What is steering me away from the fuel injectors not being the reason for the NO START is the fact that you sprayed fuel in the intake and the engine still won't start, even with good cylinder compressions, This leads me to think that the ignition is the reason for the no start. The ignition needs to be confirmed before you tear into that fuel injection.
    If the injectors were not working, the engne would still fire and run for a second by spraying fuel in the intake.
    Good Luck,
    E.D. ISF
  • fixitrodfixitrod Member Posts: 67
    Tested the spark length and consistently less than 1/2 inch some oblue mostly orange not pale. Interesting enough this is with new wires, ignition coil, distributor cap and rotor, So what does this tell me. Has it ever been better or is there a way to improve on this. I was particularly looking at no.1 cylinder since that was the one that was wet.

    Again there is a leakdown going on as the fuel pressure is not holding and an outside vlsual(not the most conclusive at this time)showed some dampness where it should be dry carbon buildup. So I am in the process of removing the intake plenum to get a better look. I will be looking closely at the fuel injection "spider"...one injector feeds six poppets. I am awaiting feedback from a supplier of refurbished unit to see if the regulator could just be replaced or does the entire unit. They sell a kit that includes all pieces. I really don't see any other direction to go unless you think the spark results are significant.(Please see above question...what can be done to improve a weak spark?)
    Taking a while due to the holidays and the stress of moving into a new home and boy do I need this vans space. To be continued....
  • electricdesignelectricdesign Member Posts: 681
    Your spark is too weak. I checked the spark on my 2000 Explorer at terminal #1 of the coil pack, and it threw hot blue/orange sparks up to 1 1/2 inches long. I think your less than 1/2 inch sparks is only good for a lawn mower. You had better check your manual to see how to check and test the ignition system.
    If you can't find the problem, you can pull the cap and rotor, or maybe just pull the whole distributor out and take it down to the Autozone Store and let them test it. They can test the module, the pickup coil and the coil output. Does yours have the coil in the distributor cap?
    Here is the link to the Autozone repair info for the HEI ignition, it has a lot of information:

    http://www.autozone.com/servlet/UiBroker?ForwardPage=/az/cds/en_us/0900823d/80/1- 1/7d/1e/0900823d80117d1e.jsp

    Good Luck,
    E.D. ISF
  • electricdesignelectricdesign Member Posts: 681
    Oh I forgot the other "great way" to test your ignition output voltage is one I found on that fuel injector site that you pointed me to at Linder Technical Services. Look under Bubbas Teknikal Tips, "Ignition Voltage Output Test"! I think if you throw the wrench over 30 feet, the ignition will be OK! The trick is to be sure that you use the Sears wrench!

    Here's the link!

  • fixitrodfixitrod Member Posts: 67
    OK, so the sparks do not appear to be as strong as you describe they should be. SO what would make them weak? All the reading I have done on spark plug wires speaks to the resistence determination of spark. The new set vs. the old set was very close with the new set having slightly more. I changed them since they were the original set on the car when I received it and I did not know their age(GM uses AC Delco and that name was on them.) The only difference was the distributor to coil lead was significantly higher in resistence. Could the ignition switch have an influence even though I am getting a spark

    What should I be looking at now then concerning ignition. There was no mention of advice in your last post...
  • fixitrodfixitrod Member Posts: 67
    On the V8 Explorer the sound is standing still. When the truck was in for a recall the dealer said it was the belt tensioner and idler pulley. Another mechanic listened to it and said the alternator bearings were bad. After having the alternator bearings refurbished at the auto electric outfit I used the whistle remained. After changing the belt tensioner pulley a nd the idler pulley the noise remains. I wonder if the tensioner itself is the culprit...that I did not change?
  • electricdesignelectricdesign Member Posts: 681
    My post was full of advice on what to do.
    Please read it again:
    "Your spark is too weak. I checked the spark on my 2000 Explorer at terminal #1 of the coil pack, and it threw hot blue/orange sparks up to 1 1/2 inches long. I think your less than 1/2 inch sparks is only good for a lawn mower. You had better check your manual to see how to check and test the ignition system.
    If you can't find the problem, you can pull the cap and rotor, or maybe just pull the whole distributor out and take it down to the Autozone Store and let them test it. They can test the module, the pickup coil and the coil output. Does yours have the coil in the distributor cap?
    Here is the link to the Autozone repair info for the HEI ignition, it has a lot of information:

    http://www.autozone.com/servlet/UiBroker?ForwardPage=/az/cds/en_us/0900823d/80/1- - 1/7d/1e/0900823d80117d1e.jsp "

    #1 I said to Check the information at the Autozone website link that I posted, it has ALL the information that you need to check and diagnose the problem.
    #2 I said to Take the distributor down to the Autozone Store and let them check it, because they have the testing tools to check the PICKUP COIL, check the MODULE, and to check the IGNITION COIL.
    #3 You are checking the resistance of the wires and such, but you need to make sure the system components are working correctly to be sure the coil is putting out the Hot Spark that it is supposed to put out, over 40,000 volts. The specific components that need to be indivually tested are:
    B. The MODULE.
    The components can be tested with an ohm meter to see if they are in spec, but they need to also be tested with the proper electronic testers to be sure that they are performing properly. Then, the assembly all put together needs to be tested for total output. The Total Output Volts should be over 40,000 volts, there is a tool # J-26792 for testing the coil output.

    The best thing to do with it is to pull the distributor out and take it down to the Autozone and let them check the whole assembly. Just be sure you have it properly in time when you reinstall it.

    Good Luck,
    E.D. ISF
  • electricdesignelectricdesign Member Posts: 681
    Did they put a new serpentine belt on it?
  • fixitrodfixitrod Member Posts: 67
    I think I responded before I got your last post which as you say was chunk full of good info. Three autozones I called do not test distributors and one mechanic I was referred to says he needs the van..imagine that.

    I tested the pickup coil by (fig 12 on the auto zone site) and according to fig. 13 it needs replacing. I gave a spark with the 4terminal connector dosconnected and as well I found the new rotor I had put on after the no start problems started was also cracked...hmmm.

    The testing of the voltage of the ignition module has me confused No 4"Check volts at "+" and "C" and should I probe both together or probe one and apply the other lead to ground. When I did both methods I got less than 1 volt with the KOEO which indicates to repair wire from module. These two wire swhich connect the Ignition module and the new ignition coil showed .001ohms continuity. Does this appear too low?)but they are not open. I need to do step 5 in fig 13(hopefully my spark plug testor can suffice as a test light?)

    I did not change the serpentine belt when I changed the pulleys ...think I need to?
  • electricdesignelectricdesign Member Posts: 681
    I'm surprised by the Autozone, I apologize for recommending them, I had ignition checked on an HEI distributor years ago, but it may have been another store, they have changed names of the stores around here. Discount is now Advanced and One-Stop is now Bumper to Bumper. I called the Autozone here in St Pete and they said they can only test the module, it has two screws, you take out the module and take it to them and they can test it. I would do that, and then test the magnet at the pickup coil. If the magnet gets weak, it can make the fire weak. You can lightly touch a small metal screwdriver blade to the poles pieces and feel for magnetisum. As far as testing the spark output voltage, the easiest way to do that is by "drawing an arc" like I desctibed before. The longer the arc, the higher the voltage, but be sure to have the battery charger on the battery when you are cranking the engine, because low battery volts will make low spark volts. I would think that if you can draw out an arc an inch or longer while cranking the engine, that should be good. A rough rule of thumb is the voltage is about 10,000 volts for every quarter inch. So a one inch arc should be about 40,000 volts.

    About your question: "The testing of the voltage of the ignition module has me confused No 4"Check volts at "+" and "C" and should I probe both together or probe one and apply the other lead to ground?"

    Your question is about Figure 12 steps 3 and 4. If you look in FIGURE 11, it gives you the answer. Those + and C wires go from the module to each side of the coil. The coil is fed "Hot" from the ignition switch and that same connection goes to one side of the coil and also to the "+" wire. Therefore the "Hot" wire from the switch feeds one side of the ignition coil and also the "+" wire, which feeds power into the module. This means the "+" wire should always show power when the ignition is on, I would assume it should be near battery voltage. The test says it should read above 10 volts, with the connector unpluged, measure from the "+" to ground with the key on for your reading.
    The "C" wire goes from the module to the other side of the coil from the power connection. This tells me that this is the wire that "Fires" the coil, by electronicly grounding at the instant the coil is suppose to fire. Everytime this wire grounds and then opens, it lets current flow through the primary of the coil, the coil builds up a magnetic field, then the instant the wire is opened (switched) by the module, the magnetic field around the coil collapses and creates the high voltage in the secondary coil. The module is an electronic switch that switches the "C" wire to ground On and Off. So to test the "C" wire, with the ignition on and the connector unpluged measure from the "C" wire to ground with the key on for your reading. The test says it should be over 10 volts. The voltage you are reading is what is coming through the primary winding of the coil. With no load on the circuit, the voltage you read should be the same or very close to the voltage you read on the "+" wire.

    What you are calling in fig 13, step 5 is step 4. Connect a 12 volt test light between the Tach Terminal and ground. The Tach terminal is exactly the same connection as the "C" wire, the "load" side of the coil. They call for the light to be steady when you crank the engine, to verify that there is no votlage drop across the primary coil as it is firing. If there IS blinking of the light, that means the primary has voltage drop everytime it has load placed on it, which means the coil is bad. An ordinary 12 volt test light will work for this, the most common electrical tool that there is.

    About the serpentine belt, the belt on my 97 used to make noise and would slip a little when it got wet, yet it looked ok. I put on a new belt, the the difference was like night and day, it's been perfect now for 4 years, no noise, no slip.

    Good Luck,
    E.D. ISF
  • fixitrodfixitrod Member Posts: 67
    Well: I went through the guidelines in fig 13(fig 11 is for the 4cylinder) and approached from a "no spark" as oppossed to low spark because in box No.1 it says..."a few sparks and then nothing is considered no spark." Got a big spark from the ignition coil even with insulated tools. Reolaced rotor that was cracked. Got more than 10 volts from "c" and "+" but got 1-10 with tach lead to ground which indicates to replace module. Well I took your advice and had mine checked and it passed so I'm thinking maybe passing still does not mean able to do its job fully but I regreased mine...frustratted at this point and thinking of just getting a new distributor but I continued to put the parts back to gether and redo some of the tests. Specifically the crank test in step 4 fig 13 and the engine sounded like it wanted to turn over. I hooked all the wires back up and doggone if it didn't start. Purring like a kitten. God only knows cause I don't.
    Now mind you I had started pulling wires off to take off the intake plenum so it ran with the TPS and MAP sensors disconnected and I think it caused some codes; the Chk engine light is on now so I hooked them back up but the light is still on. I'll watch this. I did have a couple of plug wires crossed and after rearranging them the engine smoothed out. The saga continues but for now I see a bit of light....Thanks so much to you my friend. Oh; got a drive belt for the wifes' V8 Explorer.
  • electricdesignelectricdesign Member Posts: 681
    Figure 11 is for the 4 cylinder engine, but the electrical drawing is the same, the pickup, module and coil and wiring is basicly the same for all of them.
    I know why the engine started, it's because of one of two things:
    1. either because you replaced the cracked rotor (it could have been leaking off the high voltage)
    2. or removing the module and replacing it could have cleaned and refreshed it's connections (it could have had resistance or corrosion in the connections to the module).
    Wow, So ends the Saga of the GMC Safari Van that wouldn't start! That was quite a lot to go through to find that problem, as we have been at this for over a week it seems? I'm glad the effort paid off, I was sure it would start, I was just hoping it would start before Christmas, So let this be a Christmas present to you! Stay in touch.
    Merry Christmas & Happy New Year,
    from Electric Designer In Sunny Florida
  • fixitrodfixitrod Member Posts: 67
    I would agree that refreshing the connections make sense because out of habit a cleaned them a little with a screwdriver before putting it back together. The cracked rotor also as well possible.
    Wow is right but I sure learned a lot and goes to show two heads are better than one. I need to do a top end clean of this van but I am glad you suggested I hold off on the fuel investigation. I am hoping that by having the intake and throttle body extension off while running the engine is what gave those TPS and MAP sensor codes and that once I get everything put back together they should reset. I'll check those circuits anywaay just to be sure.
    Hows your residential electrical? I get the idea you're an electrician. I need to install a couple of outlets in the new basement. Do they have a forum for that? I amrodslack@mindspring.com if not.
    Happy Holidays to you and yours!!
  • electricdesignelectricdesign Member Posts: 681
    Your Welcome and Merry Christmas
  • crzmn1crzmn1 Member Posts: 2
    i have a 95 safari that just quit. it will turn over but wont start. replaced the feul pump and steering column checked the fuses and pump relay. now for the funny part everything works execpt for the fuel pump head lights and interior lights. did a test on the wiring at the back of the fuse block and found that a fuseable link wire was testing as grounded. if i jump power to the fuel pump fuse it will start any ideas would be nice as it is my grandparents van and they are handicapped thanx
  • electricdesignelectricdesign Member Posts: 681
    That fuseasble link is testing as grounded because it IS connected to GROUND THROUGH THE LOAD. The problem is you have lost your SOURCE of POWER to that FUSEABEL LINK. Go back to THAT point and toubleshoot from THAT point, UPSTREAM towards the BATTERY and you WILL find your problem. Being that all the lights are out and the fuel pump is out, the problem must be at a major connection towards the battery, and because this fuseable link carries so much load, it must be electrically near the battery, drawingwise. In other words, the fuseable link is usually connected very close to the battery, so you must be close to finding the problem.
    Good Luck,
    E.D. In Sunny and Warm Florida
  • harrisdharrisd Member Posts: 1
    i'm having the same problem, and i replaced the fuel pump and fuel relay and fuel filter, but when i replaced the fuel pump it ran for 1 day and now won't start any suggestions?
  • 90astro90astro Member Posts: 1
    I have a 1990 astro with the exact same problem I have carbon cleaned,changed the fuel filter,fuel relay,temp.control valve,injector cleaner I can't figure it out have recieved any advice? :confuse:
  • fixitrodfixitrod Member Posts: 67
    Happy New Year! well the van came in handy moving and as such I am still in the mode of unpacking . The van broke again on the last mode. I thought it was "skipping" and my first thought was the distributor was somehow not aligned properly(I removed it to check it during the last diagnostic...wish I hadn't now. It was marked and seemed to align back up to the marks I had for guidance and it crank? ) but if so it would not have crank at all...am I correct? Nevertheless the OBD1 showed TPC(throttle position sensor), MAP and IAC sensor codes. Both the MAP and IAC sensors have been manually cleaned and were chunk full of deposits and thus it still broke again. Does it appear as I should start changing out these sensors or does it appear that something in the timing may be the culprit..your thoughts as always appreciated.
  • cmiller78cmiller78 Member Posts: 2
    Forgive me but I am a female and I may not know what some things are called but I do work on my cars. I had the same problem. First the altenator went and killed the battery. Replaced both. Simple enough. Then a few days later it completely stopped. The battery was low and I had to continuously charge the battery. Then finally no gas. Changed the fuel filter, the fuel relay, and finally the whole sending unit. Still no gas. Decided to look at the carburetor. I took some hoses and lines off to get to the carburetor. I could physically see that there was no gas going to the carburetor. I could feed it starting fluid it would start then die. So it sat in the driveway. Three months one of my other Chevy's lost the driveshaft. So I started working on the 11994 Chevy Astro. There is another module next to the fuel relay, upon inspecting it, there was very little power, replaced that. Also, on the cap of the fuel tank where the wires go to the sending unit, I had pulled one off, okay I pried it off with a screw driver. It was yellow, i had reattached it the wrong way. After all that, I finally heard the fuel pump humm. So now it is working, but I have some other issues. I had taken some lines off from the carburetor cover. Its a cirle piece and there is a line behind it CAN ANYONE TELL ME WHERE THIS LINE GOES?????
  • cmiller78cmiller78 Member Posts: 2
    Also, what is it called?
  • mauriciommauriciom Member Posts: 3
    Fuel punps range around 25.00 dollars for your vehicle?
  • mauriciommauriciom Member Posts: 3
    What do you mean leaking gas down the exhaust?
    You might have a gas line that is leaking inside the top intake cover. It is comon on all safari's. Aroung 250 in labor.
  • mauriciommauriciom Member Posts: 3
    Does any one knows how to get compression on all cylinders without taking it to the shop? Any special liquids?
  • mbeachmbeach Member Posts: 1
    my 1998 astro van was fine when i went to work then that night, i went to go home and poof! it hasnt worked since. we got it home the next day but then it was towed to a auto parts store in town. they replaced the fuel pump and filter for a small (HA!) price and it still didnt work. they then replaced the ignition control module saying they go bad in astros and today we found out that didnt work. we want to know if anyone has had this problem and what you did to get it corrected & how much. the van has over 150,000 miles on it.the parts shop said it is in the scurity system somewhere they think but they dont know for sure. they do not have the equipment to test it and see what is wrong and where. ANY HELP IS GREATLY APPRECIATED!!!
  • cargomancargoman Member Posts: 1
    my idle on my astro van 1995 is so rough when i am stopped at the light it turns off sometimes and when it is parked it is also very rough, i do not know what to do but when it is moving it is very smooth. can some one please help thank you
  • houseapehouseape Member Posts: 2
    First off get the van out of that shop ASAP and do not pay them a dime as they have not fixed anything. They are just throwing parts at it until it starts. This method will cost you big time.

    Step one is it not getting fuel ? Or is it no Spark ? An easy way to test is will the van run on ether (staring fluid). If it runs then the problem is no Fuel. If it doesn't then it is spark.
  • aouelletteaouellette Member Posts: 1
    I have the same problems. Whenever it's damp outside, the van will not start. I have brought it to the mechanics several times and still have not figured out the problem. As I can see, this is a problem with the safaris and the astro vans. Has anyone been able to diagnose the problem?
    If so, please respond because I have 4 kids and I need my van!
  • jateegeejateegee Member Posts: 1
    Okay, I'll try to keep this short, but i dont want to leave anything out.
    93 Safari Engine Code Z. Bought for four hundred bucks 2 years ago, never laid down on me till last wednesday. best vehicle i have ever had.

    Stalling at idle and low revs

    It just quit on the way too work. Pulled over, looked for obvious under the hood. Nothing. Magically it restarted. I drove to work. That day on the way home, it quit. Did not restart. Got a ride home. The next day i went back to where I left it. this was 12 hours later. it started. I drove it back to work and left it in the heated garage. i will mention that temps have been just around the freezing mark, but this seems to have no bearing on it. At work I park in a heated garage where temps are around 60f. At home I park outside. I removed the doghouse, spent the afternoon poking around. Never started. Not once. This was after I drove it back to work that morning. The next day, I brought my mechanic friend in. He figured it was the fuel pump. It only seemed to prime intermittently, and the the mallet on the gas tank trick didn't really work. I had it towed home. Luckily i have a large shop where i live. Assuming it was the pump. I proceeded to remove and replace the pump, sending unit, tank (I had a brand new one laying around) and the filter. Yippee!! All done!! Its starts!! yahoo!! STALL!!
    Next. Now it wont start again. I then proceeded to flight test some of my tools. Hmmmmm. Having a closer look, we noticed no fuel spray at all from the injectors when the starter is engaged. OK. Check the voltage. I have 12V at the injectors, but no pulse. I do not have a noid light but i dont think i need one. We unplugged the idle air controller. BAM!! it starts, runs, does not stall. Let the engine get good and hot, plug the IAC back in, idles down real smooth and nice. now it will restart when i Shut it off with the IAC plugged in (I should mention I had a recent oil change, new plugs, cap and rotor. And the van has been exhibiting these symptoms of stalling for a few weeks before any of that, or the fuel system work was done.)
    So i had a used IAC. Tried that, seemed to work for a bit but in the end it still is stalling. My buddy works at a GM dealer, so he orderd me a new one. I drove to his place of employment this morning onmy way to work to pick up the new IAC. By then, the engine is good and hot. I put the part in right there. Idles down nice and low drove the LONG way to work. About a half hour. Never stalled once. I went out to the garage several times today and it started every time. Five oclock i got to leave. Start, reverse, STALL.
    Tom the security gaurd, was watching. He found it rather amusing. I didnt, I lost it. I unplugged the IAC started it, left a strip of rubber about forty feet long in our newly surfaced indoor parking garage, said a bunch of things to Tom that even going to church would never excuse. Boy, am I ever gonna have to apoligize to him tommorow. Yikes. I dont think I have a vaccum leak either, not totally sure, but I left the van over night on the weekend, and first thing I did in the morning before trying to start i was to unplug one of the hoses (small one) from the cruise control servo. It was holding there any way.
    I was starting to think this was a hot/cold engine problem but it doesnt seem to matter wether the engine is hot or cold.
    Someone help.
    I just had a brainstorm. Do i need to unplug the ecm fuses inorder to clear any fault codes before the ecm will recognize the new IAC? I do not have a scanner, just the little metal key. Is there any web pages that give you what the engine ligh flashing sequences are?
    :confuse: :mad: :sick: :lemon:
  • scol01scol01 Member Posts: 1
    I've had a 98 Astro for 4 years and first had starting problems 6 months after I got it. After changing numerous things, the problem was fixed with a new cap and rotor. Apparently the vent holes in the distributor base get plugged up so there is no air flow inside the cap. This allows moisture to build up and it is hard to start. Before you install the new cap and rotor, punch out the small screens in the vent holes to allow air to circulate. Hope this helps!
  • gquigleygquigley Member Posts: 1
    i am having the same exact same problem. does anybody have any
  • crivercriver Member Posts: 2
    My 95 safari did the same thing. A heat gun on the engine for 10 minutes allowed me to start. I'm thinking electrical. Changed the cap and rotor, which looked bad, but same problem. I sprayed a little water here and there, (cover removed, job-and-a -half that is) and as soon as the coil got a bit wet the engine died. Bought a $40 coil and she starts fine
  • crivercriver Member Posts: 2
    I had the same problem this rainy winter. Changing an ugly rotor and cap did not help but changing the coil cured it. They seem to absorb moisture after time and weaken the spark. About 40 to 50$ if you change it yourself. Getting the engine cover off is a chore the first time.
  • bnbthlbnbthl Member Posts: 1
    I am having the same problem. Mechanic has not figured it out. Is your problem resolved and what was it..?
  • 19771977 Member Posts: 5
    I had stalling problem and check engine light appeared w/'95-removal/clean EGR corrected both after using 2 pronged metal key.
  • 19771977 Member Posts: 5
    Cleaning the EGR valve worked for me.
  • 19771977 Member Posts: 5
    Could the fuel pump "hum" be heard when ignition was first turned on before you decided to replaced it-no hum no pumping.
  • lightning5lightning5 Member Posts: 2
    I have same problem with stalling with my safari 93 code Z. I got a trouble code 53 low fuel pump voltage. I have no problem with starting, it stall when I take my foot off the gas peddle. It run rough. Can anyone help? I change fuel filter, fuel pump relay, spark plugs, ignition cable, distributor caps and rotor. It will run if I keep my foot on the gas peddle.
  • mountain_man1mountain_man1 Member Posts: 1
    I have same problem with stalling with my 92 Astro code Z but I did not get a check engine light. The symptoms started with stalling when you would shift it in gear and
    two months later the car would slightly rough idled when the car stared but when the car engine go up to temperature the van would completely stall out. You would have to pump the gas to keep it going.

    I started by replacing spark plugs, leads, distributor cap, rotor, ... but none of it made a difference.

    What I had over looked was that the vacuum elbow that connects to the carburetor and goes to the PCV value was cracked. When I went to check all of the vacuum connections it crumbled. Old Car!

    So I bought some tube and replaced the elbow and the tube connection to the PCV value just to be complete.

    The van runs great now! :)
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