car won't start?

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  #1  
Old 10-10-03, 04:36 PM
jcarbone
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Unhappy car won't start?

Hey guys first time on here. i really need help. i have an 88 buick regal v-6 3.8, automatic 4 door. Here's the problem:

The car won't start meaning the lights come on and radio works fine but the car doesn't even turn over at all. nothing at all. i brought it to my mechanic. he thought it was something with the starter and he replaced it...it was not.

It does this. i drive it, turn off, come back, and it doesn't start. i waited one time for an hour it started. another time it took 2 days! it happened again and its really frustrating me. my mechanic says he has no idea but thinks it might be the old alarm system on it. What do i do and what do i check? By the way he told he doesn't "do" alarm systems...is he being shady or could be a good possibility? just to let you know...i know next to nothing about a car so the more you can dumb it down for me the better. i don't even know what a starter is so its hard to find!

i just wanted to add this. if you could tell me how to disable the alarm system maybe i can start from there. i don't care about keeping it so if all i have to do is take a hammer to it i would have no problem doing it. it might even let me relieve some of this stress over the car.
 
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  #2  
Old 10-10-03, 05:25 PM
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You said, " ...i know next to nothing about a car ...".

Lets put that remark to the test. What is the voltage reading of your battery ?
 
  #3  
Old 10-10-03, 05:28 PM
jcarbone
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my mechanic tested the battery, put a new starter in, and tested the alternator so it prolly won't be any of those. what else could it be?
 
  #4  
Old 10-10-03, 05:42 PM
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Without knowing some facts, it c o u l d be anything and everything 'else'. Sorry I couldn't be more helpful.

Stick around a while and let the other guys here read your post. Perhaps someone here could give you a list of parts that you could replace, as was the starter. Eventually you will replace the right part and it will be fixed.
 
  #5  
Old 10-10-03, 05:59 PM
jcarbone
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i was thinking instead of going on a "wild goose chase" for parts, maybe you guys could tell me steps i could take to narrow down possibilities. Sorry maybe i should have posted this first.
 
  #6  
Old 10-10-03, 06:03 PM
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If you have an "added on Alarm" the first step is go to a shop that sells and installs alarms.

Ask them to completely remove the starter interrupt and put the starter wires back to the orginal configuration. see what that nets.

This needs to be done to determine if it's the alarm or the car.


Larry
 
  #7  
Old 10-10-03, 06:12 PM
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One step you could take would be to get a battery voltage reading.

Would it be safe to say that the battery cable to the starter is in good condition too, since the starter was just replaced ?


Mmmm, you did say that the problem is not in the battery, alternator nor starter. So if we eliminate those right off the bat, along with the battery cable, then that leaves me completely stumped.

As before, perhaps one of the regulars here can figure out why your car won't crank with a good battery and starter and cable.
 
  #8  
Old 10-10-03, 06:59 PM
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When you try to start the car, but it doesn't start; Do any of the dash lights come on? Does the engine even try to turn over?
Turn theheadlights on, then try; Do the headlights dim while the key is in the "start" position?
The area I'm leaning towards is the ignition switch. Not the "key and tumbler" but the actual electrical switch that's activate when you turn the key. It's somewhat common to have the switch burn on the terminals that actually feed the starter soleniod...
 
  #9  
Old 10-10-03, 08:38 PM
jcarbone
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the dash lights do not dim and no the engine does not turn over at all. Is an alarm system a common culprit for something like this? Thanks for the help so far guys. I'm surprised people responded so quickly. Great site!
 
  #10  
Old 10-11-03, 07:46 AM
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Jcarbone,

I know that you don't or won't want to check the battery voltage, and you say the battery is good, but the fact is that you have a bad battery. You can take it to AutoZone (trademark of Joe Cool !) and get it tested for free, and you can exchange right then and there in the parking lot yourself for a new low price battery. It just can't get any easier than that. Do it first thing this morning and you'll still have time to get to church this Sunday morning and give thanks.
 
  #11  
Old 10-11-03, 08:19 AM
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I come across this problem many times, intermittent no start, no noises, lights and every thing works except the starter.

First to check is if it has aftermarket installed alarm. Almost all of theses have a starter interrupt. They take the starter wire off the ignition switch and cut it. They insert a "bosch type" universal relay using the normally closed contacts (terms 30&87A).

It could be the Bosch relay or usually the poor workmanship on the wiring of.

Your wasting time and money if you don't have the starter wire put back to it's orginal state.

If the problem still exsists after the starter interrupt removal you have a car problem. If the problem goes away you had a Alarm problem.

Most of the time it's an Alarm problem when your dealing with non factory Alarms.

From experience when you have problems always look to what some added thats not factory. Most of the time it is either directly related or indirectly related.

Larry
 
  #12  
Old 10-11-03, 09:35 AM
mike from nj
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larry---that makes two of us.

i unplug that relay and put a jumper wire in it's place, this eliminates the entire alarm system, then i can go on my way of diagnosing the 'intermittent' problem(which is usually fixed by now)




unpluggin the alarm module won't fix it, it will keep the relay 'off' all the time and it will never start.

some alarms are so cheaply made(or so butchered in their installation), they only last a few years til you have problems like this
 
  #13  
Old 10-11-03, 10:29 AM
jcarbone
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Well i had it towed to an auto shop that knows how to work on car alrams if that's what it is. They are looking at either monday or tuesday. I will post back and let you know what they found.
 
  #14  
Old 10-11-03, 07:02 PM
Joe_F
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I think you mean a 2.8 in this 1988 Regal OR a 1998 Regal 3.8?

No one's stealing this one, no need for an alarm. Throw it out. Useless device and as mentioned, the likely source of the problem due to hokey installation.

Have the basics checked while it's there. Everyone has mentioned good points. I'm with Larry on this one.
 
  #15  
Old 10-11-03, 09:31 PM
Y Vlad
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Joe_F i had same question, but it does not matter in this case.
Larry and Mike i am with you if it is non factory alarm system.
But if Joe_F is right and it is 1998 it is different story.
 
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