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oxygen sensor?


carlsdad's Avatar
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08-02-03, 12:57 PM   #1  
carlsdad
oxygen sensor?

1988 Chevy Cavalier Z24 2.8 v6 multi-port fuel injection - If I barely touch the gas pedal I can get my car up to about 2000 rpm's. As soon as I press down on the gas it really bogs down (but doesn't die). I can't get my car over 20 mph. I am getting code 44 from the computer. Can this be caused by a bad oxygen sensor, or is it just a symptom of a bigger more expensive problem?

 
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08-02-03, 02:36 PM   #2  
autotech156
Yes it could be caused by a bad O2, it could also be:

1> Plugged fuel filter - changed it lately?

2> Fuel pump getting tired, very tired! Do a pressure test.

 
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08-02-03, 10:02 PM   #3  
code 44 means "lean exhaust"

either the oxygen sensor is reading a true lean exhaust condition and that means something else is starving the engine for fuel, or the sensor has gone bad and is sending a 'lean' signal to the computer all the time

i've seen both

take a digital voltmeter and backprobe the oxygen sensor, when the car is warmed up and idling, it should be switching between .1 and .9 volts. if it's stuck at .3 or less all the time, rev the engine a few times, you should see black smoke---time for a new sensor.

if it's original---time for a new sensor too.


autotech156 is right, if you see NO black smoke when revving, you could very easily have a clogged solid fuel filter or a fuel pump on it's last few minutes of life, you would need a fuel pressure guage to determine that correctly

if the fuel filter is original---way past time for a new one!

how does it drive if you hold the gas pedal on the floor


let us know

 
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08-02-03, 11:29 PM   #4  
carlsdad
Just changed the fuel filter when I started having problems, but it was pretty ugly when I did. I'm sure it wouldn't hurt to put another one on. Didn't think about the fuel pump, that makes sense. Let me guess it is in the tank, eh? When I put the pedal to the floor it all but kills the engine. Even a half of an inch and it is instant loss of power.

 
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08-02-03, 11:54 PM   #5  
fuel filters are normally dirty on the outside, it's what's inside that counts. when i change one, i usually put my fingers on both ports and shake it up, then pour it out of the inlet side to see what comes out---sometimes clear, sometimes solid black.

fuel pump should be inside the tank, i'm not the most knowledgable when it comes to GM, if you are going to do it, do it when the tank is almost empty---much easier. i'd put a fuel pressure guage on it before i'd replace anything though, because your description of the problem is the same for a clogged cat converter, and a new fuel pump won't fix that.

if your fuel pressure is very low(on the guage) pinch the return line after the regulator with needle nose pliers, to see if the pressure bumps up, if it goes close to 100--time for a regulator, if pinching it has no affect--likely a pump, provided it's getting 12 volts and a good ground.

a clogged cat--feel at the tailpipe for low airflow at idle and reving it

 
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08-03-03, 04:40 AM   #6  
Joe_F
I agree with Mike.

Yes, the fuel pump and strainer are in the fuel tank. Replace them with only AC Delco parts if they are the problem.

 
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08-03-03, 09:04 AM   #7  
unless you are driving two identical cavaliers and both are broke at the same time, try posting ALL your symptoms in one thread.

they MAY be related and save you and us some time!

 
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09-18-03, 11:07 AM   #8  
carlsdad
FYI - I finally broke down and paid to have someone hook a computer up to it. Turns out that over half of the fuel injectors were bad. So the O2 sensor was working, it really was running lean. That was due to the faulty injectors though. $275 later, it is running great! Not too bad for all 6. These were reman and I was cautioned that they typically do not last long. However, with the alternative being over twice the price, I figured I could stand to let these get me by for a while on a car that I don't plan to last 10 more years. Thanks everyone for your suggestions and insight!

 
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09-18-03, 11:08 AM   #9  
Joe_F
Good for you and thanks for the update.

 
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