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Old 11-01-2009, 04:54 PM
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1999 bonneville not starting

My sister has a 1999 Pontiac Bonneville with the 3.8 Liter V6. It stalled out on her on the highway and it will not start now. There is no spark and no fuel pressure. I had the ignition module tested at Advance Auto Parts and it tested good. I did some testing with a test light and every fuse I could find in the car tested good. I bought a Haynes repair manual for the wiring diagrams and if I am testing the power wire to the module with the light correctly there is no power going to the ignition module. I would appreciate any suggestions.

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Old 11-01-2009, 06:17 PM
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well no fuel pressure means pump is bad or no power to the pump

checked pressure with a test guage ?

does it prime up for a few seconds when you put the key in run position?

if not then it probably needs a new pump



otherwise, for no spark issue, check crank sensor

they go bad

also the MAF sensors go bad now and then

but rarer

crank sensor is most likely the culprit, if the fuel pressure is good.

these 3800 engines rarely have any problems.

the most common issues are fuel pumps going out,

and a bad injector now and then,

also a bad coil now and then, but less commonly.


nothing else ever usually.

Last edited by fast68; 11-01-2009 at 06:22 PM.
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Old 11-01-2009, 06:28 PM
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Man.. No spark and no fuel ? Thats weird..
I have sisters too. I hope somebody can help you out here..
Post as much info as you can.
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Old 11-01-2009, 08:33 PM
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Well, if i can remeber right, the 3800 series have a solid block that contains 3 coil packs. usually between that coil pack and the mounting plat, is a single grounding plate, that covers up some igintion circuits. sometimes the the outer side of the plate gets coroded, and sometimes causes the no spark issue. remove the coil block, and look at the ground plate. if it is coroded, wire brush, or gently grind it, and see wht that does. The fuel problamo, check the pump, or fuses.
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Old 11-02-2009, 12:34 PM
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If the fuel pump isn't coming on though, the computer will shut down the firing signals. Start with the pump relay, swap it out with another relay on the block. Still no pumping but relay clicks, then it is likely the pump. You say they tested the module? Did they cycle it 3 or 4 times to heat it up to vehicle conditions? Common mistake made at the parts houses.
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Old 11-02-2009, 04:21 PM
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they did test the module three times to let it heat up. Classic Auto you are saying that if the fuel pump is not running it will shut down the firing sequence? Where does the power from the ignition module come from? There is no power to the module. Even when I test the ground wire I get nothing. It is like something else went out and now there is no power to the module. I swapped around the relays along the highway and got nothing. A guy I talked to today was talking about a crash switch. He was saying if the switch went bad it would act if the car rolled over or something and shut everything down so the car would not catch on fire. I got into working on vehicles when I was about 15 yrs old and now everyone calls me to fix their vehicles. How do you tell your sisters no? I don't want her to get the expense of the dealership or a service center but I don't want to keep her without a car and me telling her it is this or this. Help me out guys
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Old 11-02-2009, 04:37 PM
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Check the electric windows and see it they work normally, also see if any other electrical stuff does not work.

Those cars have a ground block under the rug in the drivers side rocker pannel that corrodes. It is a black connector that has a cap on it. If you open teh cap there is a metal blade that connects a bunch of grounds together. The blade will pull out and they are usually all green with corrosion. We have seen this a dozen times in that vintage Pontiac and Buicks. The grounds for almost everything in the car terminate at that block. In order to access it you will need to lift the plastic sil plate and pull the carpet back. The connector is in the area behind the carpeting.

Another symptom is the windows work real slow and the rear window defroster wont work.
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Old 11-02-2009, 05:21 PM
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Bonnie not starting ???

Hi 85,,, Alot of those cars relied on oil pressure to put volts to dist and fuel pump...Check your oil... Good Luck 327/350hp
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Old 11-02-2009, 05:37 PM
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called the sister and got some new information. She said when she was driving the car her check gauges light came on then the car stalled out. She told me that she has been leaking oil and that her baby's daddy told her that he though it was the rear main seal. So if that finally went out and wasn't pumping oil to the sending unit would that cause it? I don't know about the 3800 v6 but I am pretty sure on the 350's the sending unit was one of the first things that got oil pressure.
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Old 11-03-2009, 05:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crussell85
called the sister and got some new information. She said when she was driving the car her check gauges light came on then the car stalled out. She told me that she has been leaking oil and that her baby's daddy told her that he though it was the rear main seal. So if that finally went out and wasn't pumping oil to the sending unit would that cause it? I don't know about the 3800 v6 but I am pretty sure on the 350's the sending unit was one of the first things that got oil pressure.

Check the grounds I mentioned. they will cause all kinds of issues.
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Old 11-04-2009, 06:47 PM
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Ok guys get ready to laugh and say what a *******. My sister sat along the freeway for an hour, missed two days of work, had to travel about 60 miles and tow the car, removed the gas tank to replace the fuel pump and she also had to borrow my mothers blazer to travel back home and continue her life without her car for now, all over a 20 AMP FUSE!!!!!
There is a fuse and relay center underneath the hood and a fuse panel underneath the drivers side dash. But wait there's more. I was chasing wires down and decided to remove some plastic underneath the passenger side dash to access the computer to see if there was any melted wires or bad grounds or anything like that underneath there. As soon as I removed the plastic panel I seen another fuse panel that had a popped 20 amp fuse. I removed the fuse and replaced with a new one and the fuel pump kicked on and I also now have spark.
I told my sister that if she would have had an owners manual in her car I would have known that the panel was there because it would have been in the owners manual.
So to change the subject of this post. Why did the fuse pop? Do they just wear out and get weak after awhile, she said that she drove through enough water that she could hear it against the bottom of the car. So did she just get something wet and ground it out eventually and popped the fuse. Or is something drawing to much power. Should I just replace the fuse and see what happens and if it pops again then worry about tracking something down?

Thanks for the help guys.
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Old 11-04-2009, 06:57 PM
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I would check those grounds like Tbucket23 was saying. I think a bad enough ground could cause enough heat to burn a fuse. If they are all corroded then it is certainly not helping anything.
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Old 11-04-2009, 07:36 PM
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Is this a Bonneville SSEI with the supercharged 3800?

I have a 98 GTP that just stalled deader than a doornail.
It would re-fire and run VERY briefly.

The culprit turned out to be a ceramic resistor which sits low on the frame by the RH front wheel (IIRC)

It's function is to supply more fuel during boost conditions, but like I said ... "deader than a doornail" when it fails. Perhaps an intermittent failure might pop a fuse?

Click here for more info and pictures.
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Old 11-05-2009, 06:23 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crussell85
Ok guys get ready to laugh and say what a *******. My sister sat along the freeway for an hour, missed two days of work, had to travel about 60 miles and tow the car, removed the gas tank to replace the fuel pump and she also had to borrow my mothers blazer to travel back home and continue her life without her car for now, all over a 20 AMP FUSE!!!!!
There is a fuse and relay center underneath the hood and a fuse panel underneath the drivers side dash. But wait there's more. I was chasing wires down and decided to remove some plastic underneath the passenger side dash to access the computer to see if there was any melted wires or bad grounds or anything like that underneath there. As soon as I removed the plastic panel I seen another fuse panel that had a popped 20 amp fuse. I removed the fuse and replaced with a new one and the fuel pump kicked on and I also now have spark.
I told my sister that if she would have had an owners manual in her car I would have known that the panel was there because it would have been in the owners manual.
So to change the subject of this post. Why did the fuse pop? Do they just wear out and get weak after awhile, she said that she drove through enough water that she could hear it against the bottom of the car. So did she just get something wet and ground it out eventually and popped the fuse. Or is something drawing to much power. Should I just replace the fuse and see what happens and if it pops again then worry about tracking something down?

Thanks for the help guys.
I have seen that fuse blown once and sorry I didnt think of it. Oddly enough the car I saw it blown on had gone through water. I believe that is the main power for the ECM
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