Question about 1997 Saturn SL

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Car won't start!!

I had to drive to another city today, and I didn't realize that my boyfriend had ran all of the radiator fluid out of my '97 Saturn SL1. He put radiator fluid in it, forgot to put the cap on, found out, and put the cap back on without putting more fluid in it or telling me. I didn't realize this until I called him after the car broke down. The engine is turning, but not cranking over. I know that it has new oil, needs a tune up, and overheated, but after cooling off for two hours it still won't start. Any suggestions? I put more fluid in it, the battery is working, and I smell gas when trying to start while pushing on the gas pedal. Could it be the spark plugs, and if so, why did it wait until it overheated to stop working?!?

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  • AmyLynn001 Nov 03, 2008

    I just realized I blew the head gasket. My boyfriend is an idiot, and I am just as smart to think he knew something about cars. Thanks for trying.

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AmyLynn001, 1st thing, let the car sit for a couple hours (because u smell gas, it's definitely flooded). Turn the key to start (do NOT touch the gas pedal!! Cars are designed now to start w/out touching the gas pedal. If u do, u will flood it, and make it even more difficult to start) When u turn the key, only hold it to turn the engine over for no more than 10 seconds. If after the 10 seconds it doesn't start, turn key off, wait about 10 seconds, repeat. (this is to reduce wear and tear on the starter, and to not run the battery down real quick). It sounds like several problems coming together caused this. U state that the car needs a tune up, it's likely the overheating, need of a tune up (car not performing to optimum efficiency) and pushing on the gas pedal, resulting in flooding, all came together to create this no start condition. Eliminate any one (preferably all!) and u should be able to start the car. So, hopefully just letting it sit and not touching the gas pedal while attempting to start will be enough to get u back on the road, then get that tune up soon. Let me know how u make out.

Posted on Nov 03, 2008

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