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97 Geo Metro stalls and won't start


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ke012600
New User

Nov 28, 2012, 10:59 AM

Post #1 of 7 (6487 views)
97 Geo Metro stalls and won't start Sign In

1997 Geo Metro LSI / 4-cylinder / 1.3L 2Dr Hatchback / Only 87,5XX miles

Geo started stalling out and wouldn't start. Let it sit for a couple days, then it fired up and drove about 30-45 minutes, stalled out and died. Had it towed back. Changed the battery which had a dead cell, air filter which was pretty dirty, and the fuel filter which was likely somewhat dirty. Started up and ran like a charm for a day and a half. Died again, had it towed back. Day later, it started right up but idled low. Ran for a bit then died again. Towed it back. Changed the fuel filter (which I vow to NEVER do again). Drove it in circles around the block for about 5 minutes, seemed to work great. Next day, fired right up, no low idle, sounded great. Drove it about 20 miles and it died again. Had it towed back. (Insurance company now hates me.) Took the ignition coil and ignition module to Auto Zone and both tested OK. Took the pickup coil off and checked the ohms and it measures a resistance of about 200. Haynes manual says it should test between 140-190 so I doubt that's the problem. I'm at a loss for what to try next. Mechanic friend says the spark plugs would make it die right away OR not start, as opposed to driving until it warms up before dying. ??
I'm a female Blush and I know nothing about cars, so if someone could give me detailed ideas of what to do next, it'd be greatly appreciated!!!


Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
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Nov 28, 2012, 11:51 AM

Post #2 of 7 (6461 views)
Re: 97 Geo Metro stalls and won't start Sign In

YOU said you know nothing about cars, so............ With a problem like this that can behave you or someone is going to have to catch it in the act and determine what is missing most likely either spark or fuel delivery. That mean you could need stuff at the ready just to narrow it down never mind the fix.

Not sure if insurance is going to like another tow but if you can risk the run to get a good code reading it might lead to the problem. If when it ran the check engine light was on there's definitely a code or more stored that could help a lot,

T


ke012600
New User

Nov 28, 2012, 1:15 PM

Post #3 of 7 (6441 views)
Re: 97 Geo Metro stalls and won't start Sign In

Check engine light not on, but had it read anyway. No codes available.
I know it's either fuel problem or ignition problem, but through everything I've already done to it, I still can't narrow down the problem. I've been with it every time it's died and I know all the symptoms. What exactly should I be looking for that will be a determinable factor?


Hammer Time
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Hammer Time profile image

Nov 28, 2012, 1:18 PM

Post #4 of 7 (6437 views)
Re: 97 Geo Metro stalls and won't start Sign In


Quote
What exactly should I be looking for


A qualified repair shop



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We offer help in answering questions, clarifying things or giving advice but we are not a substitute for an on-site inspection by a professional.



Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Tom Greenleaf profile image

Nov 28, 2012, 1:38 PM

Post #5 of 7 (6434 views)
Re: 97 Geo Metro stalls and won't start Sign In

This is tricky if by yourself. You would need even a basic spark tester or in line test light showing that spark is going to even one spark plug when cranking and not starting. The cranking and looking underhood alone can be done but another gadget to crank while under the hood.

If you don't hear fuel pump prime up with just key to run - should give a quick buzz then quit. If you are stuck on a busy street forget hearing itMad Been there done that.

Other for lack of fuel would be to spray some starting fluid into throttle body which requires knowing how to do that, reassemble the parts so they are still spark arrestors and if it makes a quick run and stalls you know you lack fuel but not why yet.

It's not funny as you are still on the side of a road or someplace you don't want to be. A higher end code reading may be needed. Even without a code or check engine light that had been on there could be a code pending.

This stinks. There are more tools and tests that probably will not prove a thing unless you catch it. Same if you take it to a shop and tell the story it might just behave perfectly. No harm in asking if a shop will take this on and just let it run hoping it will happen or drive it till it does IF THERE ARE NO OTHER CLUES AS TO WHY that are found.

Do you have a shop or tech that will take this on? I hate to suggest tossing parts that are on a maybe list that could do this unless dirt cheap but you may hear that as the suggested route and still not sure until is doesn't pull this crap again for quite a while,

T


ke012600
New User

Nov 28, 2012, 2:46 PM

Post #6 of 7 (6422 views)
Re: 97 Geo Metro stalls and won't start Sign In

Did a basic spark test as described by my mechanic friend by inserting a long screwdriver into the spark plug socket and then the metal side of the screwdriver toward the engine. All 4 spark plug sockets had quick orangish sparks.

The fuel pump does engage with the key on. It was engaging even prior to changing the fuel pump out, but since the pump was changed, it is now louder and obviously stronger. No problems there.

Spraying carbeurator cleaner onto the throttle body (my neighbor did that) made it start but as soon as the spraying stopped, it died.

I'm not looking for anyone to say change this part, change that part so I can nickel and dime myself to death. But if there are parts that anyone can suggest that may be part of the problem, that will give me more to research and hopefully more arrows to my answers. Avoiding taking it to a shop because I haven't got $800 in my back pocket and even if I did, I'd rather do the things myself that are possible in my driveway. I'm a relatively intelligent girl, so I have no problem researching this stuff and figuring out how to do it.

Thanks for all your help so far!


Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Tom Greenleaf profile image

Nov 28, 2012, 3:28 PM

Post #7 of 7 (6419 views)
Re: 97 Geo Metro stalls and won't start Sign In

Seems you are now dealing with the lack of fuel delivery. Forget chasing spark for now. Noisy new pump? Hmmm. Pressure test that at fuel rail both just key on run and when engine running. The tester should hold that pressure for a decent time when car is shut off.

Noisy doesn't mean it's working properly or not with the fuel pump. If notably noisy it may need to be replaced again and not even the problem at hand!

I hear you with the nickle and dime thing. It's now 50s, 100s and more. Basic car but the test tools and plain hand tools to have enough could probably buy a new one and that would be at a minimum. Not hard to spend more on some tools than the job would cost to send out but you probably can isolate it. About now I say fuel pressure is dropping off - just the guess du jour for now,

T






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