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Old 07-21-2008, 02:03 PM
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Engine issues on daily driver

Hey I was looking for some help troubleshooting the problems I've been having with my daily driver/parts runner.

Its a 1998 GMC Sonoma 4x4 4.3l...

The issue is after a 5 or 10 minute drive when the engine gets warm after no previous signs of a problem the engine will begin to sputter and die. My guess is that it is something electronic but I have no idea to be sure. It had not thrown a check engine code the first 5x that this occured but this last time it finally did. After letting the engine sit for approx. 2-3 hr its able to start up again...

I've replaced the fuel pump and ignition switch about 6 months ago and the fuel pump seems to keep ample pressure in the fuel rail and i can also hear it running...

any ideas questions or suggestions would greatly help me out thanks!

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Old 07-21-2008, 02:45 PM
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What does the fuel filter look like? It can show correct pressure but not always volume. Then you go look at O2 sensor operation. These are two easy places to start, then you have to look at the EGR system and the coolant sensor. I drowned a throttle position sensor while washing an engine one time - it would run, kinda, but no power and would occasionally die. Then look at the distributor electronics - module or pickup.

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Old 07-21-2008, 02:51 PM
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Those are all good suggestions, but unfortunately it could be almost any of the sensors. Unfortunately you can keep throwing money at it, replacing one part at a time until you get lucky, or you can use a diagnostic tool such as the OTC Genisys to monitor the system while you drive. The Genisys (and others, I'm sure) have a freeze frame feature that records all the sensor data when you press a button. That way if the problem occurs while you're driving, you can go back and look at the data later.

The problem, of course, is finding someone to let you borrow the machine. I ended up buying a used one on ebay, but that was still $600. There may be software you can load into a laptop that will allow you to do the same thing for a lot less money.
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Old 07-21-2008, 06:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 5.0Falcon
Hey I was looking for some help troubleshooting the problems I've been having with my daily driver/parts runner.

Its a 1998 GMC Sonoma 4x4 4.3l...

The issue is after a 5 or 10 minute drive when the engine gets warm after no previous signs of a problem the engine will begin to sputter and die. My guess is that it is something electronic but I have no idea to be sure. It had not thrown a check engine code the first 5x that this occured but this last time it finally did. After letting the engine sit for approx. 2-3 hr its able to start up again...

I've replaced the fuel pump and ignition switch about 6 months ago and the fuel pump seems to keep ample pressure in the fuel rail and i can also hear it running...



any ideas questions or suggestions would greatly help me out thanks!
It sounds like it is running ok until it goes into closed loop and the computer takes over. I would be suspicious of the O2 or a coolant sensor. have you checked the fuel presure when it is dead.

When it dies, have you checked for spark and fuel presure at the rail. I would do this to at least narrow down the issue. If you do have access to a graphing scanner, I would also look at the crank signal when it wont start if it is spark that is missing. If you have no spark and no fuel it could also be a module in the distributor heating up if that has one.

Bottom line you need to find out what is missing and go from there.
You mentioned it had a cel on, what were the codes

Chet
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Old 07-23-2008, 05:04 PM
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Firstly I have replaced the fuel filter with no change in symptoms, however one thing i would note is the thick sludge that came out the clean side of the filter ??? beyond that when it wouldnt start i would use my pocket knife and depress the fuel pressure check valve and would recieve a satisfying spray of fuel everywhere... so i would assume to eliminate the fuel system...

I will be taking it to a friends shop to have the codes run (with the hassle of trailering it there)

however, I was looking at getting a Genisys diagnosis tool but was not sure about dropping that kind of cash do you guys recommend the laptop software, how well does it work and at what price?
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