New here & with engine problems. - Impala Tech
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post #1 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-01-2009, 02:42 PM Thread Starter
 
 
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New here & with engine problems.

I have a 2003 LS with the 3.8v6. Just about a month ago I had a tune up (plugs, wires, fuel filter & thermostat because it was bad). It is not quite up to snuff as yet. It is sluggish. No acceleration unless I pump the peddle. At about 4500rpm it spits and sputters like still needs a tune up.
I have several possible problems:
Cam sensor
Crank sensor
Mass air flow sensor
Ignition coils
Vacuum leak

I would sure appreciate any insight that may be helpful. I sure don't want to need to replace the mas air flow sensor (it is one spendy part!!!).

Thanks to all who respond in advance.
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post #2 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-01-2009, 03:17 PM
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Have you cleaned the MAF? When the get dirty, they can cause problems. They sell a spray at auto parts stores for doing that. Cheap to try, just be gentle with it.

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post #3 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-01-2009, 05:08 PM Thread Starter
 
 
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Thanks, I will check that out!!!!
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post #4 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-01-2009, 05:30 PM
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You really need to hook up a scan tool to it and go into code history and the freeze frame data to see what's going on. All of those parts are good suspects, but it could be a loose connection or bad wire, etc.

Don't listen to me, what do I know? I've only been doing this for 30 years.
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post #5 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-01-2009, 07:25 PM Thread Starter
 
 
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I will need to find somebody with the proper scanning tool. Autozone only used an Actron Pocket Code Scan tool which I suppose is limited in its capabilities. If this helps the result code was P0300.
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post #6 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-01-2009, 07:35 PM
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I had a temp sensor go bad in a 3.1 v6 in my Beretta. It caused the engine to do the same thing only when it was hot. It basically told the computer the engine was cold and was trying to run the engine in closed loop (choke).
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post #7 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-01-2009, 07:52 PM
BA.
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I'm a betting man,..... and with essentially not much info I'm going to suggest a clogged catalytic convertor.

also,...double what dcairns said.....and be careful touching the MAF sensor!

HOW A NOVICE REBUILDS A 66 IMPALA CONVERTIBLE:
http://www.impalas.net/forums/blog.php?u=1432
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post #8 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-03-2009, 09:43 AM
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ALERT!! 3.8 V6 is highly succeptible to intake gasket/upper plenum failures that result in coolant getting into the combustion chamber. Once they start to leak, the vehicle will gradually run worse and worse until failure results in engine hydro-locking after shut off. Good news is that it is relatively easy to repair if caught in time. P0300 is engine misfire and a good scan tool can indicate by misfire history data if the miss is relegated to one cylinder or various cylinders misfiring. Usually an intake gasket that is starting to fail will affect more than one cylinder.
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post #9 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-03-2009, 07:16 PM
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You're very right Steve. Usually, the upper intake needs to be replaced because the heat from the heat riser distorts the plastic intake, which is why they start to leak in the first place.

*NOTE!!! The PCV valve DOES NOT come installed in the upper intake. DO NOT assemble the upper intake without installing the PCV valve under the map sensor. If you do, the car will run fine, but it will whistle and will shut off if you remove the oil filler cap with engine running.

............ask me how I know that little tid bit.

Don't listen to me, what do I know? I've only been doing this for 30 years.
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post #10 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-10-2009, 01:29 AM
 
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Hey i am also new here but i would say that you should go to the dealer
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post #11 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-10-2009, 03:44 PM
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Randy, you got this fixed yet?

HOW A NOVICE REBUILDS A 66 IMPALA CONVERTIBLE:
http://www.impalas.net/forums/blog.php?u=1432
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post #12 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-13-2009, 03:34 PM Thread Starter
 
 
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Not yet. Gotta wait till after Christmas to bring it to a dealer. But before then I am going to try cleaning the MAF sensor. I just need to purchase one of those security type of Torx wrenches. It appears to be the T27 but not sure.

As an aside, a week before Thanksgiving the dealer had a sale. My youngest son found a 2003 Imapala for a good price. He purchased it (one of those "as is" types) and a couple of days later it started acting up. Well, the dealer towed it (free!), determined it was the ignition switch and replaced it (also free!!), a couple of days later it started acting up in the same way. The dealer then found out the MAF was acting up. And then they also replaced the MAF (all free again!!!). I am thinking it should be a decent place to bring mine.
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post #13 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-13-2009, 05:52 PM
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WOW!!! Not too many places sell cars "as is" and have service like that!!! Outstanding!

Don't listen to me, what do I know? I've only been doing this for 30 years.
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post #14 of 19 (permalink) Old 01-07-2010, 02:30 PM Thread Starter
 
 
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Well, I got it fixed. Brought it to the previously mentioned dealer. Catalytic converter. $680 plus to take care of it. Brought it to my local mechanic. $225.
When I went to pick it up the battery was dead. had it jumped. Drove it home. This morning I was going to take it to work and the battery is acting dead. What else is going to flake out next????
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post #15 of 19 (permalink) Old 01-07-2010, 11:35 PM
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I like to think of that as "this car is getting more reliable with every new part I put on it!".


HOW A NOVICE REBUILDS A 66 IMPALA CONVERTIBLE:
http://www.impalas.net/forums/blog.php?u=1432
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post #16 of 19 (permalink) Old 01-12-2010, 10:12 AM Thread Starter
 
 
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When I picked the car the other day I asked what could of caused the converter to get plugged. One of the reasons mentioned was anti-freeze getting into it. Back in February 2009 the serpentine snapped and it was about 6-10 miles before I could get it off the freeway and close to a town. It was -30 at the time. Could it be possible that some anti-freeze got squirted when the engine was getting quite hot and not having the water pump working? Oh, and by the way the battery was kinda bulging on both ends. I think it was the original.
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post #17 of 19 (permalink) Old 01-12-2010, 05:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BA. View Post
I'm a betting man,..... and with essentially not much info I'm going to suggest a clogged catalytic convertor.

also,...double what dcairns said.....and be careful touching the MAF sensor!

Quote:
Originally Posted by twoimpalas View Post
Well, I got it fixed. Brought it to the previously mentioned dealer. Catalytic converter. $680 plus to take care of it. Brought it to my local mechanic. $225.

Hey I finally got one that BD didn't! lol! Ouch! twisted my arm patting myself on the back!

HOW A NOVICE REBUILDS A 66 IMPALA CONVERTIBLE:
http://www.impalas.net/forums/blog.php?u=1432
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post #18 of 19 (permalink) Old 01-12-2010, 06:48 PM
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Under no circumstances should antifreeze get in the exhaust. Not even if it gets hot. If there was, the chief suspect would be the afore-mentioned intake gaskets.

Cold temps have a way of finding all the stuff that is getting weak. Batteries are no exception.

Don't listen to me, what do I know? I've only been doing this for 30 years.
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post #19 of 19 (permalink) Old 11-29-2011, 06:07 AM
 
 
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Had the same issue with my impala, got it fixed at a shop. I wanted to do it myself but in the end I went to them cause it was too hard for me to fix it.

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