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Dan, Technician
Category: Pontiac
Satisfied Customers: 24587
Experience:  Independent Shop Experience, 2 Year Automotive Diploma, & Access to Information Database
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Runs fine idles fine but dies randomly and after it just

This answer was rated:

runs fine idles fine but dies randomly and after it just cranks but eventually turns back on and runs fine until once again dies
JA: How many miles are on the car? What size is the engine?
Customer: 188300. 3.4 v6
JA: What is the make/model/year of your car?
Customer: pontiac grand am se 1999
JA: Are you fixing your Grand Am yourself? What have you tried so far?
Customer: nothing so far
JA: Anything else you want the mechanic to know before I connect you?
Customer: no
Customer: replied 1 month ago.
does it more often after its been running for a while it has time to warm up

Hello, my name is ***** ***** I'm here to help get your problem solved.

Is the check engine light on? How long does it usually take before it starts again?

Customer: replied 1 month ago.
no check engine and sometimes right away and sometimes it just cranks takes up to 6 or 8 times until it starts up again

It sounds like the ignition switch may be failing, next time it doesn't restart right away check to see if pink wire going to ignition module has power with key in start position, if missing power then replace the ignition switch. If it does have power then check fuel pressure during problem, if fuel pressure is low replace fuel pump. If pressure is good and you have power going to ignition module check for spark, if missing spark replace the ignition module. Let me know how it goes or if you have more questions, thanks.

Customer: replied 1 month ago.
another thing that i noticed is that it dies mostly while accelerating why would it run and idle fine then at random not get spark or fuel. if it was either of these causing the problem why arent they acting up at idle or at cruising speeds

Everything is put under more stress at higher rpm "more throttle" so they would be more likely to act up under those conditions. Let me know if you have more questions, thanks.

Customer: replied 1 month ago.
would it be the same if it doesnt happen when its cold and only happens when its warm

No, that is also normal when things fail. They often work when cold then don't act up until warm but above tests will need to be done to know what part is failing, to me it sounds most like a ignition switch or ignition module.

Customer: replied 1 month ago.
because i can run it pretty hard and get to 4-5000 rpms when its moderately cold still and it doesnt die but after say 15min of driving end up at a stop idles fine then being to accelerate and it dies before even reaching 2000rpms doesnt jurk or sputter just dies

Testing is going to be required no matter what, I wish I could give you a for sure answer based on symptoms but I can't and testing pretty much needs to be done always to make sure right parts are replaced. You should be able to test power at ignition module within 5 minutes and test fuel pressure within another 5 minutes. Let me know how it goes or if you have questions, you can reply to this answer at any time without additional fees. Thanks again and please do not forget to rate answer.

Customer: replied 1 month ago.
OK ill test it as soon as i can thank you for the help

No problem, I'm happy to help. Let me know if you need anything, thanks.

Customer: replied 1 month ago.
checking the fuel pressure at idle correct ? also what are the ranges of psi i am looking for, for a good pump and what would be low psi for a bad fuel pump

You will want to check fuel pressure when vehicle will start and compare reading during no start condition. Pressure will probably be fine every time vehicle is starting so you need to check during problem, same with every other test such as as voltage to ignition module and spark test.

Dan and 2 other Pontiac Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 1 month ago.
OK thank you

Let me know how it turns out or if you need anything in the process of testing, thanks.

Customer: replied 29 days ago.
Changed ignition switch still shuts off randomly less then before but now turns on right away after shutting off

Next thing i'd do is clean out the throttle body if that hasn't already been done.

Customer: replied 29 days ago.
Could a bad ignition switch cause other parts to go bad if it was bad for to long

No, if it restarts right away EVERY time I think your throttle body may just be dirty.

Customer: replied 29 days ago.
Ok I will check it thank you

Sounds good, keep me updated. Thanks.

Customer: replied 28 days ago.
While cleaning the throttle body that was very dirty I also took the egr valve off just to take a look and found out that the tube underneath the valve is missing it's screws and is just bouncing up and down
Customer: replied 28 days ago.
My mistake the egr bolts go all the way down to the tube
Customer: replied 28 days ago.
far has turned on every time and has not turned off after an hour of driving seems to have been fixed

Good to hear, thanks for update.

Customer: replied 26 days ago.
Problem came back when I was cleaning the throttle body I noticed oil on and around the air filter could the pcv be causing the problem

It is possible and worth trying. Is it still restarting right away every time?

Customer: replied 26 days ago.
One time it took 3 tries

You are going to need to try and do some testing during the problem, I'd start with a fuel pressure test.

Customer: replied 26 days ago.
Ok I will test it

Thanks, ***** ***** updated.

Customer: replied 17 days ago.
sorry its taken so long to get back to you but havent had lots of time lately to work on the car. fuel pressure was good at idle and every time that i got it to stall out again was when i went full throttle. it doesnt just die anymore and turns back on everytime. fuel pressure was fine every time i tested it. the problem is then i go full throttle, or accelerate really quickly it dies. what could be causing this problem?

That is odd, possibly fuel pressure or fuel pressure regulator. Pressure should go higher under full acceleration. Other thing is possible throttle position sensor or mass airflow sensor but those would usually turn on check engine light. Unplug the mass airflow sensor to see if it helps if so replace. If not then I'd still do the fuel pressure test. Let me know how it goes, thanks.