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need help!

jcraft's Avatar

Join Date: Aug 2002
Posts: 355

02-03-04, 09:42 AM   #1  
need help!

Have a 89 Chevy baretta with 6cyl. a/c automatic Not sure what size engine, front wheel dr. the last few weeks when it's been cold when i start the engine it squeels away and the voltmeter shows a real low voltage, lites dim and the power steering is not working. it runs for a few minutes like this and all of a sudden the voltmeter starts to go up to normal the steering comes back and everything is fine. This usually happens when it sits overnight. Now, this morning I drove to work okay I hit a few major puddles and about a mile later the car started shaking and felt like it was going to stall. I pulled into work and let it sit for 5 hours. Now when i start it up it runs good in park but as soon as it gets in drive the whole car shakes and theres not much power when i step on the gas. any thoughts what this could be.

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goldstar's Avatar
Forum Topic Moderator

Join Date: Oct 2002
Posts: 4,286

02-03-04, 02:46 PM   #2  
Sounds like it may be two seperate problems. The squeal is probably the serpentine belt ( fan belt ) slipping when it is cold. The alternator is trying to bring the battery up after a cold start and the belt is cold, stiff, and probably old. If the belt is more than a few years old, it should be replaced.

When you hit the puddles you probably splashed water up onto the engine and it has shorted one or more ignition wires. They will dry in time. One quick check would be to start the engine in a dark place, open the hood, and look and listen. You may see a little spark where it does not belong and may hear the zap.

Drying the bad wire will help and see that it is not touching any metal part of the engine. Again, you may be due for a new set of ignition wires.

davo's Avatar

Join Date: Apr 2002
Posts: 2,417

02-03-04, 03:19 PM   #3  
While your in there checking look real close at the belt tensioner that may be why it squeals when cold.Replace the plug wires getting them wet and then misfiring means they are bad.Drying them out will be a very short term solution as soon as they get wet again you will be at square one.

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