Last post on Nov 11, 2013 at 5:16 AM
You are in the Pontiac Bonneville
What is this discussion about?
Pontiac Bonneville, Auto Repair, Sedan
#2 of 236 '96 SSE - No Start
May 24, 2006 (6:34 pm)
Hope someone can help me with a real bugger. My son's '96 SSE locked up at a light last Nov. before he shipped off to Iraq. Thinking he ran low on oil, etc. the car sat until I decided to look into it this week. Pulled pan - ok..Found it to be hydro. locked on #1 (egr pipe came out of plenum, which melted through coolant passage). Pulled all plugs & checked compression - all around 150 with fair battery. Replaced intake manifold gaskets, plenum & all other related gaskets. Now, engine won't start. Occasionally get random firing, that's all. I have spark, injector pulses, 45psi fuel rail pressure. Checked & rechecked for a connector I missed. Any ideas? I'm thinking stale gas would still allow car to start. Hoping I didn't jump a tooth on the timing gears, but don't know if I would have this much compression. I should note the security light is on, but it was on with car running ok last year. Any way to disable that? Thanks!
#3 of 236 Re: '96 SSE - No Start [boschler]
May 25, 2006 (2:12 pm)
1) You said "no start". Does engine crank or not?
2) Security Light probably not thee issue as you have fuel pressure.
#4 of 236 Re: '96 SSE - No Start [azu]
May 25, 2006 (2:27 pm)
Hi, thanks for the reply.
1. Yes, engine cranks like crazy. If I open up throttle wide, it sounds like it wants to catch, bu no dice. I just bought a can of starter fluid (in case gas is stale) & gave it a shot in the intake rubber between throttle body & air cleaner - no difference.
2. Yea, I opened up the owner's manual & learned the same thing. Ignition key can't be it either as it cranks.
I'm starting to worry that the sudden stop of crank either allowed cam to jump a tooth, or perhaps the vibration dampener slipped(?) That is where the tone wheel is for the crank sensor, no? I worked for Oldsmobile up to '88 & remember something about them, but have forgotten a bunch as well...
#5 of 236 Re: '96 SSE - No Start [boschler]
May 25, 2006 (2:41 pm)
I think you may have answered your own question. I would suspect in order of probability;
1) Damage to vibration damper
2) Timing chain and/or sprocket damage
3) Failed Crankshaft sensor
4) Failed Camshaft Sensor.
5) Failed ECM
#6 of 236 Re: '96 SSE - No Start [azu]
May 25, 2006 (5:59 pm)
I guess I was hoping for a solution other than my suspicions. I'm having a hard time believing timing chain jumping just one tooth. Normally, the cam gear strips & all hell braks loose.
One thing I'm going to do is pull the dampener to check the crank key. That would seem to be the weakest link in the picture to me. I'll post whatever I find. I'm taking the night off of this one...
#7 of 236 Re: '96 SSE - No Start [boschler]
May 29, 2006 (2:51 pm)
Well, after spending this morning pulling timing cover & finding everything ok (all steel cam gear btw), I put (front 3) fresh plugs in & removed the springs from the cat. convertor pipe just in case the antifreeze got in & plugged the catalyst. Engine started right up, ran rough for a bit, then cleared. Re-connected cat. & still ran good. Even though they looked good & having checked plugs on two cylinders outside the engine while cranking, I figure the electrodes were shunting in the cylinders. Rule of thumb - never ignore the simplest measures......
#8 of 236 another "no start" problem
May 25, 2006 (8:29 pm)
I have a 97 Bonneville. I tried to start it. The security light flashes, but it will not crank. I have checked the battery cables, the park-neutral security switch. I have jumped the starter and it works fine. I bought a new key, but it still will not crank. I read an earlier post that it could be a starter enable relay control switch, but I can't locate that under the dash. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
#9 of 236 Re: another "no start" problem [bozbl]
May 26, 2006 (2:57 am)
The flashing security light should go off in 3 minutes. Then you can try the key again. It means it read the wrong resistance from the chip in the key. And when you try to turn the key to start three times it locks down everything for three minutes.
It would be broken wires in the steering column, it could be dirty contact wires in the ignition lock, it could be...
You can put alcohol on the key chip area and put it into the ignition lock several times to get alcohol in there to clean the contact wires. It may help.
There is a way to cut the wires going up into the the steering column and replace the key at the top with a resistor at the bottom to make the box read the right resistance.
Was the tilt column moved up and down a lot? How many miles on the car?
The resistance system is called VATS if you want to search for info on the web.
#10 of 236 Re: another "no start" problem [imidazol97]
May 27, 2006 (7:37 am)
Thanks you for the information.
The car has 117K.
I did try the alcohol with no result.
It could have been the tilt wife was the last one to drive the car... I know should not have let her get behind the wheel...
I will check out the VATS system on the internet.