doity

Car stalling when driven in warmer weather 88'

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doity    12

Hi, I have written on this before as it has been a recurring problem since I bought my coupe 10 years ago.  The car stalled soon after buying it and I seem to remember throwing parts at it, and it turned out that it was a bad CPS.  I have had issues with it stalling and it most always occurs during spells of hot weather.  The car will usually do this as it did tonight....after driving about 25 minutes or so (mostly freeway miles) the car stalled while in motion.  I was able to start it up eventually and got it about a block more when it stalled on the hill going up to my place.  Wore the battery down cranking it and had to call for a jump start and then it started right up.  The guy tested the alternator and it was charging.

 

Like I said, this happens predominately during hot weather and it is not too frequent but enough to be a hassle.  The car JUST got out of the shop after 3 months where they fixed the intake manifold gasket, thermostat, lots of electric issues, etc.  I was reading the forum and these symptoms seem to be a common issue with the Reatta.  Some things that I will look at is the IAC and maybe the Ignition Control Module, but it has not thrown any codes (see video below) so I doubt that it is that or the O2 sensor.  In my opinion these cars put out an excessive amount of heat underneath the hood which might contribute to some of these problems.  Is that plausible?  Well, I guess I have to park it again and after spending 2k on the latest issues I am starting to think I have a screw loose for putting up with this!  BTW, the car has 80k on the odometer.  

 

I hope someone who is having these issues also will be able to get some answers from the replies as the problem seems to be fairly common to this car.

 

 

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tcsNdZjtkIY&feature=youtu.be

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DAVES89    344

It's not the IAC as that controls the idle, however a cleaning would not be a bad idea.

 I would bet on the Ignition Control Module as they have a history of failing. Your description of your problem is a classic sign especially when you talk of the tow operator coming to jump the car which allowed the module to cool down. The Ignition Control Module issue will not throw a code.

 I would start there.

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doity    12

Thanks Dave.  I will get a new ICM and hopefully that will be it as I am slowly loosing my enthusiasm for this car.  But I am too far in to turn back now :)

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89RedDarkGrey    252

That oil pressure didn't look healthy, and with the idle fluctuating on the high side- it appears to be a vacuum leak. I do agree that a AC Delco upgrade would be advisable, just for the sake of a stronger ignition & better MPG. Even though your Shop performed 3 months (?) and $2k worth of work- the problem remains. I would definitely do a smoke test, at an independent Shop, to check for leaks- engine cold and hot. I would also avoid telling the independent Shop the prior history; so they aren't set out on "finding out what the other guy did" and waste your time and money. A smoke test should be around $50 for diagnosis- a repair would be extra, of course- but then you'd have definitive proof of that circuit of causes either yes or no.

 

Ask them to show you the test in progress. It usually takes about 10-15 minutes. To familiarize yourself with the procedure, and what to look for- please watch THIS VIDEO and THIS VIDEO.

 

While our 3.8L are considered "bullet proof" due to the simplicity and built-in redundancy of it's systems- even the touted "AC Delco" type ignition can do strange things, enough to make 2 seasoned Techs scratch their heads, but through definitive testing- they do come to the conclusion in THIS VIDEO, and it shows excellent ways to test our coils (AC DELCO) and ICM. 

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doity    12

Yeah, I was definitely going to get the Delco.  The work the shop did was mainly in tracking down a inoperable instrument cluster and CRT  and associated backlighting.  They ended up installing a new BCM, 'new' instrument cluster, CPS, etc.  They did not get into any tune-up work and the only engine work was the new gasket for the intake manifold.  I believe that they also changed the oil and of course new antifreeze.

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89RedDarkGrey    252

A "vacuum leak" isn't always an intake manifold. Usually- when you button up one, it goes to the next weakest link. A smoke test is the best definitive course. Any false air (unmetered by the MAF) will cause the O2 to see a lean condition, dump in extra fuel, then abruptly cut it when it sees rich, making the IAC hunt. Put the engine under load (going uphill) and the spark advances- but the increase of throttle makes a larger air leak, weakening the mixture beyond O2 control, and it stalls. Warm engine, foot on brake, in drive, give it half throttle. What happens?

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doity    12

Well let me see what happens 89Red, but it might be awhile.  My other car is now having cooling problems, as in a massive coolant leak that is leaking god knows where.  And that car just got out of the shop too, with a tranny swap and new tires.  The hits just keep on coming :(

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doity    12

Is there a good place to get a new Delco ICM?  I called my local Buick dealer and they quoted over $600 I think it was for a new Delco ICM and coil pack.  The ICM by itself was something like $420 :o

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89RedDarkGrey    252

If you buy the ICM and coils from the ROJ Store- a small percentage goes towards keeping it going for all of us, who refer to it for all of the compiled knowledge it has to offer, to keep our Reattas going:D

 

ICM   3 COILS   MOUNTING BRACKET (RockAuto)

 

Some have gotten the whole setup pretty cheap from "U-Pull It" Yards, but sometimes you can't tell if or how long they will last:unsure:

 

I chose a completely new setup from RockAuto.com. (see photo, click to enlarge) I got it for a 1991 Buick Reatta- but you must still order the MOUNTING BRACKET. When you get it- take the ICM, Bracket, and a Coil with you to your local hardware store, and get long enough 6 self-tapping screws (the bracket holes have no threads, and it's soft aluminum) to attach coil - to - ICM - to - bracket. You will also need 3 Stove Bolts, 3 washers, 3 nuts to attach bracket to engine ignition bracket (the 3 square holes in bracket plate).

 

When you are done- this is the plug wire routing you must follow: 

 

598d61dd08bf6_SIMPLEFIRINGORDER.thumb.jpg.376744a03ff451070ae93e37056e1254.jpg              598d536136cff_ROCKAUTOCOMPLETEIGNITION.thumb.jpg.71332c855022805cdbba0585e2bf30a7.jpg

 

That Dealer price is ridiculous:angry:

Edited by 89RedDarkGrey (see edit history)

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89RedDarkGrey    252

How are the plug wires and spark plugs? Along with a more powerful ignition unit, now you can benefit from a spark plug that will fire VERY EASILY, and reliably. I chose THESE plugs and THESE WIRES and have had great success with them so far. For our ignition systems- I would advise to not use any regular (silver) "anti-seize" on the threads, but only use this- for corrosion prevention and maximum electrical conductivity.

 

598dbc4ec8d7a_COPPERGREASE.png.19404aabe607d8b62e043907edc529c3.png

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padgett    432

I have had very good luck with Rapidfire #14s and the Delco ignition, Were a lot of 3800s in yards during the "cash for clunkers" program and could always tell a new one. Last time I bought a complete unit was $40.

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89RedDarkGrey    252
1 hour ago, padgett said:

Were a lot of 3800s in yards during the "cash for clunkers" program and could always tell a new one. Last time I bought a complete unit was $40

 

What year was that? Must've been like Christmas in FL for rust-free parts.

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padgett    432

Originally in 2009. Problem was the program required destroying the engine internals. OTOH external components (like the ignition assembly) were good.

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