Question about 1995 Geo Metro

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I have a 1995 Geo Metro five speed manual. I was driving down a two lane road when all of the sudden the car jerked then the engine died. I tried to restart it but get nothing when I turn the ignition

I was driving down a two lane road at about 35 mph and the car jerked, then engine died and now will not start. The lights work, the wipers work, the heater fan works. When I turn the key to start nothing happens, no starter turning over. Car runs fine, engine has about 40,000 and tranny was replaced with a used one about three weeks ago. Any idea what may have happened?

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  • David Haller
    David Haller Mar 31, 2014

    Also when driving it the past couple of weeks at slower speeds I could hear a ticking sound like a spark was jumping.

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    _-__-___-_ Apr 01, 2014

    spark only jumps, when tune ups are skiped or HV spark wires fall off. the that is NOT a no start, sir that is a NO CRANK, 2 differnent things, if you had parked on a hell, youd have discovered (or learned) that any M/T car can be push starter or more easy, gravity started. so what is bad, that is eays, the KEY LINE is and can only be 3 things,,, Bad key switch (nah) bad clutch switch(big time) and bad starter solenid. i wong bother to mention(lol) that bad wires from point A(ign switch) to point B, the starter solenoid , tops the list on all cars this old.

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    _-__-___-_ Apr 01, 2014

    see it does start, right , gravity started,. so use this page to find it , this page works for most cars on the road, not just THIS car. yoiur car is metro swift.

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    _-__-___-_ Apr 01, 2014

    btw, contrats, the 1s person ever to post tranny type.... shocking...

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    _-__-___-_ Apr 01, 2014

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    _-__-___-_ Apr 01, 2014

    see "Jump the 2 nodes shown below " in page. this is called hot wiring a starter.

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    _-__-___-_ Apr 01, 2014

    some guys get so mad at the the clutch switch they bypass it.

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    _-__-___-_ Apr 01, 2014

    on my cars I have a clutch bypass plug , in the glove box, so im not stranded by it. pre made up, just in case..

  • David Haller
    David Haller Apr 02, 2014

    Turns out it was the timing belt. Non interference engine, lucky me. Belt replaced and running fine now. Thanks for all the suggestions.

  • David Haller
    David Haller Apr 02, 2014

    Found the problem. Timing belt gave up. Thanks for all the input everyone.

  • David Haller
    David Haller Apr 02, 2014

    Oh, the ticking noise really sounds like a spark arching across a field. Not sure where its at but looking into it.

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    _-__-___-_ Apr 02, 2014

    nobody does the 60k, making belf fails common. if the tune up was skipped the wires will arc, all cars ever made with wires. if the wires are good, (there is no test for them, not the insulation, unless you want to light up like a June bug) but you can use a rubber hose to your ear and find all noise. out side and near engine. and other places. works like MAGIC.

  • David Haller
    David Haller Apr 02, 2014

    I know about how to check plug wires and such. The sound was coming from under the hood, sounded like a pepple stuck in a tire at times but was intermitent and increased then decreased with the engine rpms which make me think a plug wire from the coil or something else. Thanks

  • David Haller
    David Haller Apr 02, 2014

    Meant a pebble or small rock.

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    _-__-___-_ Apr 02, 2014

    id bet too , there are lots of bad electric connections on car this old, on our sidekicks this old we check ground like this.

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    _-__-___-_ Apr 02, 2014

    and the power side this. we have this, this happens on metros/swifts and sidekicks, all old cars (not hanger-queens)

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    _-__-___-_ Apr 02, 2014

    your car is really a suzuki, Geo is mostly a BADGE.

  • hotrod10 Apr 03, 2014

    Glad you found the problem. When you said you "get nothing" when you turned the key, I thought it wasn't cranking and I feared the worst. You say it still has the ticking sound? Try opening the oil filler and see if it gets louder. It's a bit messy, but the lifters in those little engines can make a sharper sound than you might guess.



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  • 43 Answers

It could be you've lost the electrical ground connection to the engine. Follow the large cable from the negative post of the battery to where it bolts onto the engine and check if it's loose. If it's not you may have a bigger problem.

I would like to be optimistic, and I hope I'm wrong, but what you describe sound like the engine has seized. You can check by putting a socket wrench on the big bolt in the center of the main pulley at the front of the engine at the bottom. I suggest using a long-handled "break-over bar". Make sure the transmission is in neutral and try to turn it by pulling the handle towards the front of the car. It normally takes some muscle to move it, but if you give it all you've got and it doesn't budge, something's seized up. If it moves but still won't start, I'm all out of guesses.

If it won't move, the next step, if you choose to go further, is to take the timing belt cover off, remove the timing belt, and try turning the camshaft and crankshaft to see which one's frozen.

Posted on Mar 31, 2014


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The fan relay may be malfunctioning (the fan relay is what actually switches the fan on and off and gets its signal from the ECM, which in turn gets its signal from the temp sensor) testing/replacing the relay and temp sensor would be the best thing to start with,... unless you notice any additional (non factory) wire attached to the power wires to the fan.  Sometimes folks, in an attmpt to fix  an overheating or fan relay problem, attach a ignition switched positive lead from the fusebox or other switched source to the positive poer lead on the fan,.. making the fan run whenever the ignition is switched on.   

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SOURCE: 1996 Geo Metro 4 cylinder

look at this post, this may help, I am having the same problem and am going to try to find one of these parts.

Posted on Mar 05, 2009

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SOURCE: car won't start, battery fine, just hear clicks

Even though the lights work, the battery may still be just short on power to turn the motor over thus the clicking. Try charging the battery or jumping, if you still get a clicking it would be the starter solenoid. Considering the year you may just want to replace the whole starter.

Posted on May 18, 2009

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SOURCE: 97 Geo Metro will not start

IF you are able to jump the vehicle using cables connected to another car then it is a power issue, if the vehicle stays running after starter you can most likely rule out the regulator, it sound like the battery is weak and dieing, it can be strong enough to run the radio without having the power to start the ignition.

Posted on Aug 26, 2009

Testimonial: "i will take out and have tested at autozone, thanx"

SOURCE: Turn signals dont work 97 Geo Metro

There is probably something shorting the front turn signal wires; the car is supposed to turn the signal light circut on and leave it on if it detects a burned out light bulb. The flashers, however, are supposed to work normally no matter what happens.
Hope this helps!

Posted on Mar 14, 2010

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