Feb 092017

2005 Pontiac AztecMy battery is dead and I can not remove key from the ignition. It wont turn back to the off position for me to take it out.


Can not remove key

The ignition key can only be removed when the transmission is placed in park. The first thing I would check is the boot around the shifter. There could be something cause in there stopping the shifter from fully reaching the park position. If there is nothing, the park lock solenoid may be faulty.

Park Lock Solenoid

The park lock solenoid is a safety device that prevents an inadvertent shift out of PARK when the key is in the OFF position. The key must be in the RUN position to release the park lock solenoid.

The system consists of the park lock solenoid.

With the ignition in the ON position, voltage is supplied to the park lock solenoid. The park lock solenoid energizes through a permanent ground unlocking the shift lever. With the ignition in the OFF or ACCY position the park lock solenoid de-energizes and locks the shift lever in the park position.

Dec 272016

2002 Pontiac Grand AmCar wouldn’t start one morning. It gets fuel and spark. We took it to our mechanic friend where it sat for about 2 months. We got the car back when he wasn’t able to figure it out. It started right away and was fine for a few days then died while I was driving. The dash lights have been on since we got it over a year ago, we tried to bypass the security. We are at a loss. Please help!


The security will shut off the fuel injector pulse. So if you are getting fuel and spark, it has nothing to do with the security. Here is a wonderful no start diagnostic chart that gives you step by step checks to follow.

Dec 082016

1993 Pontiac Grand PrixOn 11/30/16 my car stalled as I was driving in heavy rain. I did drive through some not so high standing water. I pulled to the side and tried to start the engine and it idled for a minute or two but when I tried to pull away it stalled. It would only start if I feed it gas and it did not want to stay running as it did back fire. I had it towed to a small shop where a friend is the service writer. The mechanic pulled about 7 different codes and when cleared they came back. I feel it’s unlikely that all of these different things failed at the same time? The mechanic doesn’t know where to start with all of these codes as it would cost much money. Where would you start? Thanks for your help


I would take an air hose tot eh engine compartment to dry out the engine bay and all around the spark plugs, and electrical connections. Electronics do weird things when exposed to lots of water.

Nov 292016

2001 Pontiac Sunfirerough idle


Rough Idle

When the check engine light is on, have the engine trouble codes pulled and post them below in the comments. Just about any local auto parts store will do this for free. There is a good chance that an engine sensor is failing. Therefore it is difficult to pinpoint without the codes. When the check engine light is not on then the most likely cause is either bad gas or an engine misfire. A rough idle can be due to a large vacuum leak while the vehicle operates just fine at other times.

The misfire diagnostic may indicate a fault due to a temporary fault not necessarily caused by a vehicle emission system malfunction. Possible malfunctions include the following conditions:

  • Contaminated fuel
  • Running out of fuel
  • Fuel fouled spark plugs
  • Basic engine fault
Nov 222016

2009 Pontiac G8I have cylinder 5 misfire code p0305 on my 2009 Pontiac G8 base 3.6L V6. I’ve tried messing with it. I switched the spark plugs and tested the coil pack on cylinder 5, the test showed it was fine. I had a “professional” shop look at it and they told me it seems like the head was cracked and the piston in cylinder 5 was burned. Which is impossible because my car does not over heat at all and turns on just fine. It runs pretty decent besides the misfire no leaks or anything! What could it be?


The P0305 code means that cylinder 5 is misfiring and or is randomly misfiring. Start by checking for intake leaks an if no leaks are found the next step is to replace the spark plugs on cylinder 5. Most common cause would be a faulty coil. Try swapping it with a different cylinder, clear the codes and see if the issue follows the coil. Don’t rule this out just because it passed your test. See if it passes mine. If the problem persist more tests needs to be done to diagnose problem, see “Possible Causes”

Pontiac Code P0305 – Cylinder 5 Misfire Detected

Possible causes

– Faulty spark plug 5
– Clogged or faulty fuel injector 5
– Faulty ignition coil 5
– Fuel injector 5 harness is open or shorted
– Fuel injector 5 circuit poor electrical connection
– Ignition coil 5 harness is open or shorted
– Ignition coil 5 circuit poor electrical connection
– Insufficient cylinder 5 compression
– Incorrect fuel pressure
– Intake air leak

Code P0305 Description

First of all, when a misfire occurs, engine speed will fluctuate. In addition, if the engine speed fluctuates enough to cause the Crankshaft Position (CKP) sensor signal to vary, the Engine Control Module (ECM) can determine that a misfire is occurring.

Nov 162016

2006 Pontiac Grand PrixMy catalytic convertor has been cut off of my 2006 Pontiac Grand Prix. And the check engine light was on when bought. I changed plugs and wires. When I accelerate the check engine light flashing off and on. When I slow down the flashing stops.


You will need to have the Engine Trouble Codes pulled. This is the only way to know why the check engine light is coming on and or flashing. Guessing is not a good idea when just about any local auto parts store will pull the codes for free. Post the codes below in the comments for more information.

engine light flashing

If The Check Engine Light Flashing

The following may prevent more serious damage to your vehicle:

  • Reducing vehicle speed
  • Avoiding hard accelerations
  • Avoiding steep uphill grades
  • When you are towing a trailer, reduce the amount of cargo being hauled as soon as it is possible

If the engine light flashing stops and remains on steady, see “Check Engine Light Is On Steady” following.

If the light continues to flash, when it is safe to do so, stop the vehicle. Find a safe place to park your vehicle. Turn the key off, wait at least 10 seconds and restart the engine. If the light remains on steady, see “Check Engine Light Is On Steady” following. If the light is still flashing, follow the previous steps, and see your dealer for service as soon as possible.

Check Engine Light Is On Steady

You may be able to correct the emission system malfunction by considering the following:

Did you recently put fuel into your vehicle?

If so, reinstall the fuel cap, making sure to fully install the cap. The diagnostic system can determine if the fuel cap has been left off or improperly installed. A loose or missing fuel cap will allow fuel to evaporate into the atmosphere. A few driving trips with the cap properly installed should turn the light off.

Did you just drive through a deep puddle of water?

If so, your electrical system may be wet. The condition will usually be corrected when the electrical system dries out. A few driving trips should turn the light off.

Have you recently changed brands of fuel?

If so, be sure to fuel your vehicle with quality fuel. Poor fuel quality will cause your engine not to run as efficiently as designed. You may notice this as stalling after start-up, stalling when you put the vehicle into gear, misfiring, hesitation on acceleration, or stumbling on acceleration. (These conditions may go away once the engine is warmed up.) This will be detected by the system and cause the light to turn on.

If you experience one or more of these conditions, change the fuel brand you use. It will require at least one full tank of the proper fuel to turn the light off.

If none of the above steps have made the light turn off, your dealer can check the vehicle. Your dealer has the proper test equipment and diagnostic tools to fix any mechanical or electrical problems that may have developed.

Nov 112016

1994 Pontiac BonnevilleThe car leaks water inside very badly. I understand through reading some blogs that this is a common problem. My guess is that the sunroof leak channel drains are all plugged up. I was told that these drains drain to the fender wells. Can you tell me how to locate these drains in the fender wells so that I can attempt to push a cable up through them to unclog them? I have looked everywhere for these drains and can’t locate them. I really don’t want to have to tear the whole interior apart to get to the top side of them. Thanks!


I am going to suggest a different approach because it may save you some time. Start from the top. Retract the sunroof to gain access tot he drain holes. Using an air compressor and appropriate air nozzle, blow air through the drain holes. In Addition check the seals (weather stripping) around the sunroof itself.  Furthermore you can listen for where the air escapes to help locate the other end of the drains.

If just the passenger floor is wet, it may be due to a leak in the heater core. Check your coolant level to see if it is getting low.

Sunroof Removal


  • Disconnect the negative battery cable.
  • Remove the weatherstrip lace around the sunroof opening (inside the vehicle).
  • Remove or lower the formed headlining, as necessary.
  • Unfasten the attaching screws.
  • Remove the motor from roof by pulling it off of the transmission.NOTE: If motor is removed from vehicle, it must be synchronized before installation.
  • If equipped, remove the express module by sliding it out of the slots in the bracket toward the center of the vehicle.
  • Detach the electrical connector.


Nov 112016

Pontiac Grand AmMy 2000 Pontiac Grand Am will run well, no check engine lights,  etc. It will suddenly just shut off. When you pull over and put it in park wait a few minutes will start back up. Maybe runs a mile maybe another day. It does not spit and sputter, no warning at all. I have replaced the ignition module, alternator, serpentine belt, plugs, and fuel filter, also battery and fuel pump relay. When it shuts off if you try to restart it too soon it sounds like no fuel, but when I turn the key on I hear the fuel pump come on. I’m losing my mind. I got no idea what else to check. This is my daughters car. It has left her stranded several times in the last 2 weeks. Any ideas?


When it will not start you will need to determine what it is not getting.

  • Spark
  • Fuel – Fuel pressure and Fuel Injector Pulse

We know the timing is good because it does run well when it starts so no need to check that. May be as simple as a loose connection. A quick test for spark would be to spray starting fluid in the air filter and if it starts off of that you know it has spark. Now you can concentrate on the fuel system. You may follow the No Start Diagnostic Chart or try the most common failure part, the fuel pressure regulator.


Nov 052016

2001 Pontiac Grand AmMy 2001 Pontiac Grand Am 3.4L started dying while driving down the road head scan done through an EVAP code and a random misfire code replaced ignition module all three coil packs spark plugs and wires and problem persisted had mechanic friend put a fuel pressure test iron it and it was way off Granite 47 PSI idling supposed to be I think 52 and while driving when you press on the gas the fuel pressure would actually go down so I replace the fuel filter just got done now car will not start turn the key and you can hear the fuel pump kick in and you can hear the relay click over but car still will not start this is my work vehicle I need help


After you replace the fuel filter you need to cycle the ignition key ON and OFF 10 times. Each time holding the key in the ON position for 5 seconds and repeat. This will prime the fuel system since the new fuel filter is installed empty. It should run after that but the fuel pressure should be rechecked. If it still goes down like before, you may need to replace the fuel pressure regulator and or the fuel pump itself.

Fuel Pressure Regulator Replacement

Removal Procedure

fuel pressure regulator

  • Relieve the fuel system pressure.
  • Disconnect the fuel pressure regulator vacuum line.
  • Remove the fuel pressure regulator attaching screw.
  • Using a shop towel to catch any spilled fuel, lift and twist the fuel pressure regulator in order to remove the fuel pressure regulator from the fuel rail.
  • Remove the retainer and spacer bracket from the rail and discard.
  • Remove the fuel pressure regulator from the engine fuel return pipe.
  • Remove the fuel pressure regulator inlet O-ring and the fuel return pipe O-ring and discard.
Installation Procedure

Warning! Connect the fuel return line before tightening the regulator attaching screw in order to prevent the regulator from rotating. Rotation of the regulator could damage the retainer and spacer bracket and lead to a fuel leak at the regulator inlet.


• Do not use compressed air in order to test or clean a fuel pressure regulator as damage to the fuel pressure regulator may result.

• Clean the fuel pressure regulator filter screen with gasoline if necessary.

• Do not immerse the fuel pressure regulator in a solvent bath in order to prevent damage to the fuel pressure regulator.

•Inspect the filter screen for contamination. If contaminated, replace the fuel pressure regulator.
•Lubricate the new pressure regulator inlet O-ring with clean engine oil and install on the regulator inlet.
•Lubricate the new fuel return pipe O-ring with clean engine oil.
•Install the fuel return pipe O-ring.
•Connect the fuel return pipe to the regulator.
•Install the new retainer and spacer bracket into the slot on the fuel rail.

Caution! Use the correct fastener in the correct location. Replacement fasteners must be the correct part number for that application. Fasteners requiring replacement or fasteners requiring the use of thread locking compound or sealant are identified in the service procedure. Do not use paints, lubricants, or corrosion inhibitors on fasteners or fastener joint surfaces unless specified. These coatings affect fastener torque and joint clamping force and may damage the fastener. Use the correct tightening sequence and specifications when installing fasteners in order to avoid damage to parts and systems.

  • Install the pressure regulator to the fuel rail.

Tighten the fuel return pipe fitting to 17 N·m (13 lb ft).

  • Connect the fuel pressure regulator vacuum line.
  • Install the pressure regulator attaching screw.

Tighten the pressure regulator attaching screw to 8.5 N·m (75 lb in).

  • Inspect and verify that the retainer and spacer bracket is engaged in the slots in the fuel rail. Grasp and pull on the regulator to ensure that the regulator is properly seated.
  • Connect the negative battery cable.
  • Inspect the fuel leaks using the following procedures:
  • Turn ON the ignition, with the engine OFF for 2 seconds.
  • Turn OFF the ignition for 10 seconds.
  • Turn ON the ignition, with the engine OFF.
  • Inspect for fuel leaks.
Oct 272016

2001 Pontiac SunfireWhere is my throttle position sensor, TPS sensor location?

The TPS sensor location is on the side of the throttle body. An air intake hose attaches from the air filter to the throttle body.

TPS Sensor Location – Throttle Position Sensor Location

TPS Sensor location - throttle position sensor

Throttle Position Sensor Replacement

Removal Procedure

  • The air cleaner outlet resonator needs to be removed.
  • Remove the TP sensor attaching screws (1).
  • Remove the TP sensor (2) and seal (3).

Installation Procedure

  • With the throttle valve in the normal closed (idle) position, install the throttle position sensor (2) and seal (3) on the throttle body assembly.


Install the new TP sensor attaching screws when replacing TP sensor.

  • Install two TP sensor screws (1).


Tighten the screws to 3 N·m (27 lb in).

  • •Install the air cleaner outlet resonator.