My car starts different every time. Sometimes it starts instantly but sometimes I have to hold the key over for longer that normal. I wouldn't mind but the inconsistency worries me. There is definitely something that is not functioning correctly. It always starts, just sometimes not right away.
I've had the oil sending unit and fuel filter replaced. I've also had the fuel pump checked and it's working fine. Once it turns over the car runs great. Do you think I am damaging the car by driving it with this problem? I'd love any suggestions. I've taken it to two mechanics and nobody seems to have any idea what the problem is.
Thanks so much.
I have a 2001 Grand AM GT with the same problem. I bought it used and have owned it less than one year. Most of that time I have devoted to solving this problem. I've researched it online, and gone to my mechanic (who is very trustworthy) three times, all of which failed. I even tried a second mechanic for a different opinion, who also could not solve the problem. My conclusion, though I don't like it any more than you probably will, is that no one knows how to fix it. If GM does, they're not telling, as they have refused to reply to my mechanic's emails. The only thing we can do is leave it alone; DO NOT waste money on new fuel pumps, ignition coils, and other parts unless you absolutely have to, as they will NOT solve this issue. My credit card bill can attest to that...
This is the last American-made car I will ever purchase.
I also have had this problem. Had it towed on 2 separate occasions to the local Hires and the problem doesn't duplicate there. Car starts right up for them. I'm thinking the solution(in my case) might have to do with the car being up on the tow truck bed. An airlock that gets cleared? Previous time this happened I let it sit for a week, banged on the fuel tank one aft. and it started right up. Any ideas let me know, as it happened again yesterday.
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Try cleaning your key and lock cylinder with electrical contact cleaner. If this solves your problem, well we no the answer. If the problem still exsists refer your self to my personal qustions. and Iwill try to help you on this.
Product Safety - Ignition Circuit Thermal Events # 04002 - (02/18/2004) 04002 -- Ignition Circuit Thermal Events 1998 Buck Skylark 1998-2001 Chevrolet Cavalier 1998 Oldsmobile Achieva 1998 Pontiac Grand Am 1998-2001 Pontiac Sunfire Due to part availability, this recall is being conducted in three phases. Phase 1 will consist of 1998-1999 vehicles, phase 2 will consist of 2000 vehicles; and phase 3 will consist of 2001 vehicles. When sufficient parts are available to notify customers of 2000 and 2001 vehicles, you will be notified and will receive a new initiation report. Recall - Ignition Circuit DefectCondition General Motors has decided that a defect which relates to motor vehicle safety exists in certain 1998 model year Buick Skylark; 1998-2001 model year Chevrolet Cavalier; 1998 model year Oldsmobile Achieva; 1998 model year Pontiac Grand Am; and 1998-2001 model year Pontiac Sunfire vehicles. If the engine fails to start and the driver holds the key in the "start" position for an extended period, high current flows through the ignition switch, and sometimes produces enough heat to melt internal switch parts. If the switch is damaged, a fire could occur in the steering column, even with the engine off and the key removed. The fire could spread to the interior of the car, which could injure occupants of the car or cause damage to adjoining structures. Correction
CHECK YOUR BATTERY VOLTAGE.IT SHOULD BE 12.5 VOLTS.IF NOT REPLACE BATTERY ALSO .HAVE THE ALTERNATOR CHECK OUT TO MAKE SURE ITS CHARGING.IF BATTERY GOOD.MAKE SURE BATTERY CABLES IS TIGHT AND FREE FROM CORROSION.IF ALL IS GOOD. HAVE THE CAR SCANNED TO CHECK TO SEE IF SECURITY THEFT DETERENT SYSTEM IS DISABLING THE CAR FROM STARTING.
I had the exact same problem, I changed the "ignition switch" because the contacts inside were burned, this is why you see all those troubles coming in and out at different moments. It costed me 150$ to do it myself, buy the switch on an online reseller, must cheaper than the dealer! Now everything is back to normal on my Grand Prix GT 99 exept that my headlights don't light up automatically when starting the car... I have to check my fuse/relay and switch to make sure everything is ok on that side.
Hmm, sounds like starter. Next time it will not start, don't hold the key for almost a minute. Try turning the key several times if no luck, grabb a hammer and LIGHTLY tap on starter. If it turns over normally then, starter is going out.
Is the security light on? If the security light is on sometimes it won't allow you to turn your car on. That is what my Pontiac did. I had to turn my key to the on position but not all the way. I had to leave it there for 10 minutes. Then turn the key back to the off position then start it. The security setting will then allow the car to start.