1998 z24 Cavalier, Stalling Issues

Question: I have a 1998 z24 Cavalier 2.4 Twin Cam, when im driving the road after about 20 mins it will stall out an die randomly. No back fire, no fuel smell, nothing. The gauges going crazy an it shuts off. Itll start back up after about an hour, but before it does it just trys turning over. Its not having any issue with loosing horsepower. Can someone please help me.<br>

Answer: It sounds like you have a fuel pressure or no spark problem.

You are going to need to check for spark at the spark plugs when it stalls and does not restart. If there is no spark, you could have an ignition module or crank sensor going bad. If you do have spark, the next thing is to check the fuel pressure.

It is harder to check fuel pressure on older Cavaliers since they do not have a pressure test port. You would need a gauge and adapter hoses. Or at least listen for the fuel pump in the gas tank to hum when it is cranking.

As always, as scan of the computer for trouble codes can also help. Even if the check engine light was never on when the car was running, there may be a code stored.

These older Chevy Cavaliers also had a problem with water getting into the computer and causing problem. It is located inside the passenger side wheel well behind the shield. Unplug the connectors and look for corrosion. Also look for it around the computer housing.


I have a question about my car yesterday I was cleaning the outside of my car at a car wash and got in it and ever since then I started smelling like a WD-40 or like when you spray your house for bugs smell coming from my car I don’t know if that’s possible for the car some how to smell that way or maybe it was like something in the water or soap but I still smell it today not constantly all the time but like a light smell of it every so often.

Answer: Yes, if the water got under the hood it would give off a smell.
Ig the car was running at the time, you may be smelling the exhaust. If the car is running lean, it could do that. Also, if the catalytic converter is starting to go bad, that could be your problem as well.


Question: We are planning a trip to Phoenix Arizona which from where we live is a 5 hour and 51 minute trip, 406 miles away. Will my ’99 Chevrolet Cavalier (273027 mileage) make it there and back or is a rental better? It is automatic, with a 2.2 trim.

We got a new battery in 2014 and we have had to change the gas pump just last year, about two months ago. It runs smooth and it only starts getting shaky when I go 85 miles per hour. The heating and cooling system work just fine and the gas and brake work perfectly.

Answer: This is a hard question to answer. Anything can go wrong on any car at any time, especially with such high miles on it. There is really no way to tell.

The shaking at higher speeds is most likely a bad tire or a wheel out of balance. Without knowing the overall maintenance of the car it is a hard thing to guess. I personally would not take a car with that many miles on it on such a ling trip, especially if you are going to be driving in wide open areas where help is a long way off.

Just because the battery and fuel pump are new does not mean something else even more major will not go out soon. Like possibly the transmission, timing chain, headgasket (common on the 2.2L), brakes, wheel bearing or any number of other things.


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