Stalling & Loss of Power

Reply

  #1  
Old 04-04-08, 12:40 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 3
Stalling & Loss of Power

I have a 1995 VW Cabrio which I dearly love. It has about 69,000 miles on it and I have had no serious problems over the years.
I now need to make a decision...either repair what ails it...or buy a new car. I would rather repair it, if it's a reasonably cost-effective fix.

Here's the problem
While driving, the car will suddenly begin to lose power, and stop. In fact it feels as though I pulled my foot off the accelarator pedal.
(Sometimes when I accelerate or I'm just driving I hear a slight whining noise as the tachometer struggles with RPM variations.) Once it "catches" it seems to jerk a bit.

When it does stall, it might start again in 5 to 15 minutes, or not at all. It does not matter if the car is cold or heated up...stalling is just random. One day I can drive ten miles in a snowstorm and the next day it will not start in the garage after sitting overnight.
When I try to start the car, it sounds like it wants to turn over (no clicking), but just won't catch. All the electrical stuff (radio, lights, heater work).

My friendly foreign car repair guy has replaced the spark plugs and fuel filter and swears that he has checked all electrical. In fact, he thinks that the only screw that might be loose....is in my head. Right! He's not the guy waiting for a tow truck every week.
Any advice?
 
Sponsored Links
  #2  
Old 04-04-08, 01:37 PM
Banned. Rule And/Or Policy Violation
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Wisconsin
Posts: 8,629
Once it stalls and you are able to start it by 15 minutes, - if you then again drive it right after this, will it stall again in a bit?

If the lights are on and the blower motor is on, does that seem to kill it faster? Do the lights go dim at night? There are lots of things it could be; just starting with this, that's all.
 
  #3  
Old 04-05-08, 09:34 AM
Speedwrench's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Oklahoma
Posts: 1,698
have him drive it until it quits, could be fuel related or electrical, Also is it a manual trans or auto? One thing to try is install a fuel pressure guage in the line to the injectors and duct tape to windshield while driving so as soon as a problem appears you can check pressure. Tell him to check the basics. Fuel pressure, flow, compression
speedwrench
 
  #4  
Old 04-05-08, 11:36 AM
the_tow_guy's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: SW Fla USA
Posts: 11,588
Clogged cat?
 
  #5  
Old 04-05-08, 11:45 AM
Gunguy45's Avatar
Super Moderator
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: USA
Posts: 21,023
When my cat gets clogged, I give it fish oil....

Sorry, morning humor......need.... more..... coffee....
 
  #6  
Old 04-05-08, 12:18 PM
Banned. Rule And/Or Policy Violation
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Wisconsin
Posts: 8,629
Originally Posted by the_tow_guy View Post
Clogged cat?
A cat came around me today without foot. A footless cat. For real.

Anyway, it is good that all these suggestions keep coming in. Hope more do. Someone is bound to be right.

I chose to go electrical due to fact the guy also can't get the car, then to start, also. That sort of is what influenced me over say just a fuel pump or something else.

Years ago, I was on I-94 with my parents and their car suddenly started to have no pedal response at first and then just coasted to a stop. It was at night and lights dimmed also. It was his alternator. Now sometimes, if the battery is good, the battery can charge itself back up again to some degree.

I'd sure like to learn what it is causing his problem. Hope the poster comes back.

..................

Although - now after rereading his OP, I noticed he said that it will turn over,without even clicking, but just may not start. Hmmm. If the battery wore way down, it be doubtful it could then spin over good enough like that. Sounds now more to me like a bad electrical connection somewhere in primary or coil. The heat generated in 15 minutes run time might be expanding some bad electrical contact or pulling apart a broken coil winding wire maybe.
 
  #7  
Old 04-05-08, 01:05 PM
the_tow_guy's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: SW Fla USA
Posts: 11,588
Yeah, I caught that description, too, and was a little puzzled as I'm not sure if he meant that it wouldn't crank when he turned the key, in which case a clogged cat wouldn't apply.

Seems like as repeatable a problem as it appears to be that it would be easy for a garage to diagnose.
 
  #8  
Old 04-05-08, 01:45 PM
Banned. Rule And/Or Policy Violation
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Wisconsin
Posts: 8,629
Coud be a sporadic out of gas condition too (various causes depending on pump type and carburetion type).

Yes, this should be easy to figure out. Check for fuel pressure (or try starting fluid if he can) and check for spark, when the problem crops up next time.
 
  #9  
Old 04-06-08, 01:27 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 3
Thanks to everyone who answered. Someone asked if it was an automatic... answer yes! It stalls randomly. The battery is never affected (everything works). Someone suggested that it might be the solenoid??? Others think I need a relay switch? What to think?
 
  #10  
Old 04-06-08, 01:38 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 3
Thanks to everyone who answered. Good suggestions!

Someone asked if it was an automatic... answer yes!
Another question... It stalls randomly, no matter if I've driven 1 minute or 2 hours (that's the irritating part).

The battery is never affected (lights, radio, heater...everything always works).

When I said that I turn the key but do not hear that "clicking" sound.... I just wanted you to know that I did not think it was the starter.

Someone suggested that it might be the solenoid??? Others think I need a relay switch? What to think?

If I ever get this figured out, I'll pass along the findings.
 
Reply

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Display Modes