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Car occasionally stalls and won't restart for a few hours


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joezapp
User

Nov 1, 2016, 8:22 PM

Post #1 of 25 (1097 views)
  post locked   Car occasionally stalls and won't restart for a few hours  

Hi. This happened 3 times in the past month and needs to be addressed. Hopefully someone has some insight to the problem. Occasionally, the car (1999 Dodge Stratus 2.4) will stall out about 30-45 seconds after it's started. When it happens, the car will then crank fine but not start. After sitting a few hours, the car will start right up as if nothing was ever wrong.

This would be hard for a mechanic to diagnose since it's intermittent. At the same time, the car really can't be driven until I resolve it, because this problem can occur at any time.

Any ideas? Thanks...


(This post was edited by joezapp on Nov 1, 2016, 8:50 PM)


Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Tom Greenleaf profile image

Nov 1, 2016, 11:03 PM

Post #2 of 25 (1086 views)
  post locked   Re: Car occasionally stalls and won't restart for a few hours  

Codes could be telling of what circuit has an issue so suggest you get those read and post codes.


When this happens you should and need to be ready for checks to see what is missing that allows an engine to run or fire at all.


This sequence of checks while it is "All Crank, no start" should be followed by you or leave it for a tech to chase down.


Link to the post on procedures is locked up top right here................


http://autoforums.carjunky.com/...LL_NOT_START_P75655/


T



joezapp
User

Nov 2, 2016, 10:02 AM

Post #3 of 25 (1076 views)
  post locked   Re: Car occasionally stalls and won't restart for a few hours  

Thanks, Tom. I guess what is different about this is the fact that it will start after a few hours. Therefore the condition that caused it to not start after cutting out doesn't remain. I made the mistake of not listening to see if the fuel pump was turning on, so I may have to wait for it to stall again to help rule some things out. As far as codes, I've had a 0442 Small Evap Leak code for a couple years, but it wouldn't be that. I also had a 0401 EGR system code a few months back, but that has gone away. A check this week revealed just the usual 0442. Nothing new.


kev2
Veteran
kev2 profile image

Nov 2, 2016, 10:28 AM

Post #4 of 25 (1072 views)
  post locked   Re: Car occasionally stalls and won't restart for a few hours  

only code ypu see is P0442?
Vehicle is STOCK - no remote starter, mods etc?
You are using a scanner the key trick sometimes will not display all codes.
When it acts up - try spraying some carb or brake clean into TB as someone tries to start this will be a quick ck for fuel, also a spark check, those 2 quick easy should start narrowing this down...


joezapp
User

Nov 2, 2016, 6:51 PM

Post #5 of 25 (1062 views)
  post locked   Re: Car occasionally stalls and won't restart for a few hours  

Hi kev2

Yes, only code P0442 is present.
Vehicle is stock, no mods...there is a remote starter on the key. We really don't use it unless it happens by accident.
I will try those suggestions the next time it acts up.
Thanks so much!


Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Tom Greenleaf profile image

Nov 2, 2016, 10:49 PM

Post #6 of 25 (1054 views)
  post locked   Re: Car occasionally stalls and won't restart for a few hours  

Quote OP ">>Vehicle is stock, no mods...there is a remote starter on the key. We really don't use it unless it happens by accident.<<"
What? Just that you've contradicted yourself. It's messed with and now defaulting no doubt. It's not just some magic key to do that it messes with the car's wiring.


That's a MODIFICATION! Kev2 asked you about that and now it's the likely problem IMO. It would know to kill the engine if operating normally as in if you accidentally asked for it to run it would start and run just so long and shut down by itself.


Problem now is this aftermarket junk even OE junk fails - wouldn't know what codes to send that it's messed up. IMO best thing if you want this car is have the feature removed professionally wired back to OE set up then still real problems that come along you can deal with. That junk you just can't - my opinion,


T



joezapp
User

Nov 3, 2016, 4:43 PM

Post #7 of 25 (1037 views)
  post locked   Re: Car occasionally stalls and won't restart for a few hours  

Hi Tom. I believe the car came with this device on the keychain, but I can't be certain as I'm not the original owner. I considered the possibility that this feature could be the issue, but I don't know that it would have anything to do with the car not being able to start for a few hours. I also don't know that it would cause the car to stall. While this is a possibility, I would need for someone to tell me that they've had similar issues for me to start speculating for that to be the probable cause.

Like I said, we don't use the feature. All we use the device for is to unlock and lock the doors. However, a mechanic had the car for a few days and likely pressed some wrong buttons. Therefore it wouldn't hurt to remove the battery on the device and put it back in to reset the device...just in case.

Thanks for the tip!


Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Tom Greenleaf profile image

Nov 3, 2016, 5:02 PM

Post #8 of 25 (1036 views)
  post locked   Re: Car occasionally stalls and won't restart for a few hours  

OK - I just can't be sure if remote start was factory for a 1999 or a dealer installed option. Actually either way something of that sort is just asking for trouble and IMO perhaps only me, a wild safety problem any which way. Can't imagine a car that could start by accident with nobody in it in control of it.


If original or aftermarket the car should have info with it and about it. What if anything resets it or choses a frequency plus all of know of only allow a vehicle to run so long and shut it down so that default kicking in just randomly but noted by time and temperature could be getting incorrect info.


Same investigation, what drops out when it wont start. Spark, fuel delivery or perhaps both? Gotta begin somewhere WHILE it does this,


T



Hammer Time
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Hammer Time profile image

Nov 4, 2016, 3:55 AM

Post #9 of 25 (1032 views)
  post locked   Re: Car occasionally stalls and won't restart for a few hours  


Quote
Therefore it wouldn't hurt to remove the battery on the device and put it back in to reset the device...just in case.


The only thing you can accomplish doing that is to possibly disable the remote altogether. It certainly won't reset anything.



~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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.



joezapp
User

Nov 5, 2016, 9:20 PM

Post #10 of 25 (1009 views)
  post locked   Re: Car occasionally stalls and won't restart for a few hours  

Hi guys. I have an update, including all the times the problem presented itself from the beginning for this 1999 Stratus:

* Last month: Had an occasion that the car would not start, but cranked. 1 hour later, the car started normally.
* Oct 23: Car shut off 30 seconds after starting. Car started back up normally.

Note: Car has not been driven since this episode.

* Oct 24, 4PM: Car shut off after 30 seconds and would not restart. Did crank. Still would not start at 7PM. Did crank. It DID start normally the next morning.
* Car started normally multiple times since
* Nov 5, 10AM: Car simply would not start. Did crank. I VERIFIED THAT THE FUEL PUMP DID TURN ON. Tried also starting with the remote starter (which we never use). Still no start. Car started normally at 7PM as if nothing happened.

My confusion, obviously, is: What condition existed at 10AM that no longer existed at 7PM? What changed between 10AM and 7PM?

Hopefully this narrows it down a bit as to possibilities and where to start with this? Thanks!


Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
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Nov 5, 2016, 10:33 PM

Post #11 of 25 (1003 views)
  post locked   Re: Car occasionally stalls and won't restart for a few hours  

This all points to the remote starter and by now doesn't matter if factory equipped or a good aftermarket fake to look like it or behave as intended now all these years later - stuff just happens.


Any I've ever heard of will default to not allowing engines to run or not for too long be original design.


I can't know the original way this one was supposed to work if it was perfect or what on the list it shuts down so it doesn't run that also includes plain amount of time so has some clock type timer.


You now think you hear or know fuel pump is turning on. Fine but still doesn't mean it delivers fuel. You could spray starter fluid in intake and if it fired know it lacked fuel WHEN it does this. It may have also quit making spark as a default so it doesn't blow up with a known evap leak of some sort you do NOT know is minor and the computer isn't that smart just knows or thinks something is wrong with that circuit.


If not ready with equipment to see what is missing to not run there's no more point and of course it's totally frustrating.


What happens after so many hours and it just works as you asked? IDK - lots of thing including temperature changed, humidity changed to name two things.


You've ignored the evap code for a while. It just might have a time limit on how long it can warn you of that without it being found and fixed or this car isn't going to run with or without certain toy features. I plain don't know. It's a Mopar and they do things like other makes too that are NOT mainstream or common to perhaps most other makes.


It stinks: I have to say since this car if nothing else isn't dependable for you to "Fish or Cut Bait" type thing. Meaning time to send this out to a shop with a tech highly familiar with this car and can find what the thing is supposed to do when it works properly and what isn't when it fails. Could have to find a shop and a tech willing to drive it equipped to make checks while it's acting up.


No telling what's on the minds that design some things. If left to me any vehicle with a code and a remote start system would default to no running but would add wouldn't crank either so save starter but apparently not.


Time to make a choice. Do you want to spend some bucks on this car if a shop will even take this on? As I see it, it's just not usable the way it is not knowing when you'll get stuck.


High bet cost in time alone to chase this down would exceed value of this car but may be worth it or not and may not know till you fix what's known wrong all first and find it still has this problem lurking unknown if it behaves for a few tries you'll get it back with codes gone and this still at large.


Decision time and it's yours not mine to do that. I'd get rid of this car if you gave it to me - nothing personal but wouldn't spend free time of my own chasing this ghost and move on. You do what you want,


T



joezapp
User

Nov 6, 2016, 10:38 PM

Post #12 of 25 (989 views)
  post locked   Re: Car occasionally stalls and won't restart for a few hours  

Thanks so much, Tom, for the commentary. Yes, this car isn't worth giving to a mechanic to chase down the problem. My feelings exactly. As it turns out, the first episode in September I wrote off as a "one-off" situation because it then went problem-free with that issue for 2 weeks. I then had a lot of front-end work done. If the starting problem had resurfaced before I had the front-end work done, the car would certainly be bye-bye already. But since I invested the money, I'm hoping that someone out here might say, "I have seen this particular starting issue happen many times, and most of the time it's..."

I was rescued on here last year when no mechanic could figure out why the Stratus was repeatedly going into 2nd gear after 30 minutes of driving. Most felt it was the transmission. One even did for a tranny service which didn't resolve it. Then someone came on here and said, "Your car is going into limp mode. 50% of the time changing the crank position sensor resolves it. It's a cheap fix. Give it a try." I put one in myself, and sure enough, it resolved it. So I guess I'm hoping for the same luck with this situation.


(This post was edited by joezapp on Nov 6, 2016, 10:41 PM)


Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
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Nov 7, 2016, 12:11 AM

Post #13 of 25 (985 views)
  post locked   Re: Car occasionally stalls and won't restart for a few hours  

Always your call. Do make sure you get a crank sensor properly in and wiring all checks good.
Time and temp sensitive things that are intermittent are a plain b*tch to KNOW it's really fixed when/if all checks proved correct BEFORE you fixed it if so just taking a shot at the likely stuff which also can add up.


Now just story: Got a freebie from a nephew - (candy for a mechanic for fixing up to a dependable "beater car") if you will. Dang thing would cut out like yours for hours not restart. Noting with me and unaware this was it's history (nephew left that part out) so the hunt is on. Old, pre OBDII for code help. Left all tools on engine on suspect items and a push button start (made for techs) so could watch it when dang thing would strand me and came up with choices of 3 item that could do what I found costing me at cost for parts $650 at the time? Thought hard - junked it. Wish now I kept it and paid that but got $350 for the metal of it so wasn't out anything.


Tis the game you play with intermittent problems you can't prove what causes the issue then when fixed same game is knowing you really fixed it. That's annoying and can only say some chosen period of time with it not happening again then you can trust.


Your call. I suggest think of it like you don't have a car now at all and would you take this one with known issue and invest or not. You said you are unwilling to send it out for higher end testing which may or may not prove an answer is found either so always your call,


T



joezapp
User

Nov 7, 2016, 5:52 AM

Post #14 of 25 (974 views)
  post locked   Re: Car occasionally stalls and won't restart for a few hours  

More terrific commentary and food for thought. Obviously I'm leaning towards scrapping this car soon, as you did with yours.

I'll spray starting fluid in the intake if it happens again. probably even learn how to "check for spark".

One final possible clue...When I've had the car start I've heard an unfamiliar, intermittent but regular, vibrating or pulsating sound coming from the base of the steering column on the floor behind the brake pedal. I'll soon upload a photo of the area it's coming from. It's where the base of the steering column enters the floor. It could have something to do with the brake system (the brakes had to be bled with the front-end work), but MAYBE it has something to do with my starting issue. It IS something that I haven't heard previous.


Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
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Nov 7, 2016, 6:51 AM

Post #15 of 25 (970 views)
  post locked   Re: Car occasionally stalls and won't restart for a few hours  

Spark tester you leave on and watch it picture below if it shows,

If no show, Google Images of spark testers..........
(edit) It showed for now. Other types more adaptable for assorted applications but about anything that uses a spark plug and spark plug wire. Just plain, not a tester for how far spark jumps would be another test but you would be able to leave it on the car! The right type of this you can so can watch it not work is the first info you want or I would.


Not a wasted thing if you have other things in your life like a gasoline mower, blower, trimmer etc., it will test for spark on those too!





^^^^ Was there?


Ask or I'll keep trying for what works and can be seen while engine runs properly. With some adaptors these come with can place on coil packs or plugs as best needed or possible.


Starting fluid would allow an engine almost apart to fire if the rest was OK and it so much as pharted well greatly rules out a spark problem but watch out and don't let it blast you in the face or cause a fire. Put intake parts back on which would arrest a stray quick fire.


Idea is to zoon in on which is missing or both then re-zoom in on why as you rule things out one by one.


Then if that is complicated or way too expensive you have a clear chance to make the right decision on the fix or if impractically too costly can make the choice that works for you,


Tom



(This post was edited by Tom Greenleaf on Nov 7, 2016, 7:48 AM)


joezapp
User

Nov 7, 2016, 4:23 PM

Post #16 of 25 (952 views)
  post locked   Re: Car occasionally stalls and won't restart for a few hours  

Thanks, Tom. The pic of the spark tester came through fine. Looks like a handy tool to have. I will get one. Thanks!


Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Tom Greenleaf profile image

Nov 7, 2016, 8:25 PM

Post #17 of 25 (947 views)
  post locked   Re: Car occasionally stalls and won't restart for a few hours  

Sorry to add but I'm now sure the best of that type (one shown is sold in many similar types) was bought at a NAPA auto parts store. Handy as said shows that spark it there AND allows that plug to fire. Memory guess was under $15 bucks. A must have item for those intending to DIY a problem of this sort. Good luck with the tool behaving as it should for you then can move on from there,


T



joezapp
User

Nov 7, 2016, 9:53 PM

Post #18 of 25 (943 views)
  post locked   Re: Car occasionally stalls and won't restart for a few hours  

An inexpensive price for a valuable tool. Thanks so much for passing the info along!


Hammer Time
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Hammer Time profile image

Nov 8, 2016, 8:19 AM

Post #19 of 25 (927 views)
  post locked   Re: Car occasionally stalls and won't restart for a few hours  

I like this one better as it is adjustable and you can measure the strength of the spark.






~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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 8, 2016, 8:50 AM

Post #20 of 25 (923 views)
  post locked   Re: Car occasionally stalls and won't restart for a few hours  

Totally true: That type measures strength of spark. The exact one I tried (wasn't exact) is easy to leave on engine indefinitely so quickly check but need to be able to crank it either helper or yet more tools! It's pest - need multiple types and sizes of so much it gets nuts and costly to dig deep into issues,


T


joezapp
User

Nov 8, 2016, 10:21 PM

Post #21 of 25 (912 views)
  post locked   Re: Car occasionally stalls and won't restart for a few hours  

That looks like an interesting tester, Hammer Time. Thanks for that!


Wrenchly
User

Nov 17, 2016, 2:03 PM

Post #22 of 25 (871 views)
  post locked   Re: Car occasionally stalls and won't restart for a few hours  

Drive the car with a fuel pressure tester hooked up to rule out a bad fuel pump.


Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Tom Greenleaf profile image

Nov 17, 2016, 2:24 PM

Post #23 of 25 (870 views)
  post locked   Re: Car occasionally stalls and won't restart for a few hours  

Already mentioned in 2nd post for all crank, no start conditions here. Wenchly - take some time and learn how this forum runs please. Suggestions welcome but use some discretion please....... Tom


This > http://autoforums.carjunky.com/...LL_NOT_START_P75655/


joezapp
User

Nov 17, 2016, 10:17 PM

Post #24 of 25 (847 views)
  post locked   Re: Car occasionally stalls and won't restart for a few hours  

Thanks to everyone who had some input for me. I sold the car today to a mechanic and bought one for just a few hundred more with many less miles and none of the issues. I never like to part with the car I already know and has treated me well, but there comes a time to weigh it all out. Thank you, Tom, for helping me come to that decision. I really appreciate all that you guys do to help us here on carjunky!


Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Tom Greenleaf profile image

Nov 17, 2016, 10:39 PM

Post #25 of 25 (846 views)
  post locked   Re: Car occasionally stalls and won't restart for a few hours  

OK - let's sew this up for archives and YOU may ask to open it by asking any moderator.


Good luck with new vehicle, Tom






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