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  • avatar cadillac_luke 12/16/12 9:15 am PST

    I understand diagnosing the problem can be difficult when it's someone else's car.


    The best thing we can do to identify the problem is to look at exactly what happened before the car died, and identify any trouble codes saved by the car's computer.

    If the car felt like it lost power but wasn't shaking/sputtering you may have a bad fuel filter or some other faulty fuel system component. You can cheat with a can of starting fluid (use sparingly) to test if the car will fire up. Remove air filter and spray directly into the vehicle's intake manifold.

    If the car was shaking and sputtering I'd start by checking your ignition system. First look at the spark plugs, what's their condition, age, and proper gap? If those look ok, I'd inspect the wires for cracks or abrasion spots. The coil packs are the last thing I'd change, as they a very expensive.

    Keep in mind these components may be bad even if they look ok.

    If you can get me some more information about the OBDII diagnostic codes, we can help narrow down the problem further.

    Hope is info helps,

    Good luck.


Answers

  • ray80 12/16/12 8:29 am PST

    Was there a check engine light on when it lost power? I consider turning over and cranking the same thing, do you mean it turns over but doesn't seem to 'fire' up? Reply as an answer, not a new question as it gets confusing.

  • gpara 12/16/12 8:28 am PST

    Start with basics, do you hear the fuel pump run when key turns one?
    Make sure security lite goes out and is not flashing during cranking.
    Then you are down to checking for spark and fuel pressure test, reading trouble codes ect.
    It would help to know what year, engine, mileage when posting.

  • cadillac_luke 12/16/12 9:15 am PST

    I understand diagnosing the problem can be difficult when it's someone else's car.


    The best thing we can do to identify the problem is to look at exactly what happened before the car died, and identify any trouble codes saved by the car's computer.

    If the car felt like it lost power but wasn't shaking/sputtering you may have a bad fuel filter or some other faulty fuel system component. You can cheat with a can of starting fluid (use sparingly) to test if the car will fire up. Remove air filter and spray directly into the vehicle's intake manifold.

    If the car was shaking and sputtering I'd start by checking your ignition system. First look at the spark plugs, what's their condition, age, and proper gap? If those look ok, I'd inspect the wires for cracks or abrasion spots. The coil packs are the last thing I'd change, as they a very expensive.

    Keep in mind these components may be bad even if they look ok.

    If you can get me some more information about the OBDII diagnostic codes, we can help narrow down the problem further.

    Hope is info helps,

    Good luck.


  • gatorsvols 12/16/12 3:52 pm PST

    its a 20004 malibu probably around 120,000 miles cant be sure as she is in college 100 miles away. she told me no check engine came on.engine getting fire but wont start. gas tank full but acts like it is out of gas.

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