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Unread 08-03-2009, 11:59 PM   #1
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Default Car sometimes won't start - Knocking

Sometimes when starting the car the lights will come on and the radio works but it won't do anything when turning the key. Absolutely no noises at all. (However the fuel gauge does dance back and forth.)

This has only happened twice so far. One time (When I wasn't with the car) it stalled on the highway and made a bit of white smoke. Then a while later started just fine. (After only looking at the coolant and oil.) Today I forgot to put in the clutch ( ) when coming to a stop and the car didn't do anything when I tried to start it. A couple minutes later it started just fine without doing anything.

The oil light also flickers when idling and the engine makes the weirdest knock when at anything above idle. I'll record a video of it tomorrow.

And in case you didn't know, I have a 87 2.8L V6 Camaro.

Edit: Actually, here's a video of the exhaust, you can hear some knocking then.


Last edited by The Free Man; 08-04-2009 at 12:02 AM.

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Unread 08-04-2009, 12:13 AM   #2
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a oil sensor leak can cause the light to flicker but you may have a oil pressure problem if the vehicle has a knock please make a video. the starting problem your describing sounds like a dead spot on the starter or ignition switch under the collum
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Unread 08-04-2009, 10:08 AM   #3
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Yeah i'm thinking something with the starter too for the starting problem.
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Unread 08-04-2009, 11:51 AM   #4
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yeah sounds electrical
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Unread 08-04-2009, 05:33 PM   #5
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The oil light didn't flicker this time, in fact it was idling pretty high which it tends to do unless I drive it. Most of the time when coming to a light it'll sometimes excessively shake the car (Without any revving.) or sometimes rev so low that I don't even know if the car is on.

Take note that the car was no tachometer so I don't know the RPMs.

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Unread 08-04-2009, 08:56 PM   #6
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Definetly a head problem sticking or stuck valve rocker or spring problem it's time to pull the valve covers and inspec for damage. If the lights coming on when it drops to idle when stopping this could be because the oil pressure is to low when the rpm's drop that low I would first replace the sensor it's located on the oil filter housing and cost about ten bucks. If that solves the problem were good the only thing that worries me is I'm hoping the Valve problem wasnt caused by low oil pressure lets cross our fingers.

This is defenetly not related to the startring issue.

How many miles?

Last tune up?

Is it a TPI 2.8L?

Any signs of over heating under the hood like rusty water stains? Pic would be great!

What Wieght oil are you running?

Do you have a digital multimeter automotive style or know anyone who does?

We need to inspec the heads for sludge build up restricting oil flow and valve damage thats why the valve covers are a necessity to remove wil need new gaskets.

See if you can figure out which head the niose is coming from and start with that one.

The idle issue is something unrelated also don't panic we will help she sounds health and salvagable just need more info.

The staring issue is 95% your starter or ignition switch. Start with the ignition switch since reman starters on a car this old sometimes are worse then the one coming out.
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Unread 08-04-2009, 10:23 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lautinjr View Post
Definetly a head problem sticking or stuck valve rocker or spring problem it's time to pull the valve covers and inspec for damage. If the lights coming on when it drops to idle when stopping this could be because the oil pressure is to low when the rpm's drop that low I would first replace the sensor it's located on the oil filter housing and cost about ten bucks. If that solves the problem were good the only thing that worries me is I'm hoping the Valve problem wasnt caused by low oil pressure lets cross our fingers.

This is defenetly not related to the startring issue.

How many miles?

Last tune up?

Is it a TPI 2.8L?

Any signs of over heating under the hood like rusty water stains? Pic would be great!

What Wieght oil are you running?

Do you have a digital multimeter automotive style or know anyone who does?

We need to inspec the heads for sludge build up restricting oil flow and valve damage thats why the valve covers are a necessity to remove wil need new gaskets.

See if you can figure out which head the niose is coming from and start with that one.

The idle issue is something unrelated also don't panic we will help she sounds health and salvagable just need more info.

The staring issue is 95% your starter or ignition switch. Start with the ignition switch since reman starters on a car this old sometimes are worse then the one coming out.
198448 Miles

Last tune up - No idea. I haven't had one done since I got it either. (A month ago.)

Yes, it's a TPI.

Here are some pictures.





While taking the pictures I noticed this, a little pool of oil on the block.



Oil - 5W30

Don't have or know anyone with any kind of digital multimeter.

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Unread 08-04-2009, 10:43 PM   #8
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Might wanna put a bolt in that hole
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Unread 08-04-2009, 10:47 PM   #9
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Looks good for 200K. The oil is leaking from the intake. Your car is MAF so any vacuum leaks after the MAF can cause your idle problem, plus the tape around the intake tube needs to be fixed and sealed properly with MAF thats a real problem. From the looks of it I would also replace the PVC gromments, elbow, and valve they can leak causing your idle issue. Also the MAF wire taped to the rad hose is a no no the hose heats the wire and raises the resistance changing the voltage being seen by the ECU. The PCV groments will be a cake walk on your car with the valve covers off but the covers them selves are a *****. The engine set up you have is a good one not prone to many problems but if the intake is leaking oil it could also be leaking vacuum and coolant this could be a issue. The smoking your seeing some times sounds lie a valve problem also.

The big ? is is it worth the tear down because ultimately it's a head job to fix the car right and a head job on a car with 200K is usually a bad idea at that piont you might as well replace the motor that would solve alot of issue's that are liabel to be there still after the head job.

Although old the car was well kept by some previous ownber it's hard to tell now but the evidence is there. If it were my car I would pul the intake and valve covers clean the heads around the springs of burnt sludge build up replace all gaskets on the intake and valve covers pull the oil pan clean the pan inspect for damage or particles floating in the pan and replace the Oil pump. Then and this will sound bad but fill the engine up with 3.5 quarts 5w30 castrol GTX and 1 quart Dexron III run for 15 minutes at idle then change oil and filter agiain with 4.5 quarts High mileage 5w30 run for 500 miles then change again to help clean the engine out. This will also probably take care of the Smoking and ticking unless there is major head damage. Please dont attempt to do this with out pulling the valve covers because if it brakes up some deposits they can clog other oil passages and cause serious damage.
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Unread 08-04-2009, 10:49 PM   #10
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I wanted a auto Digital multi meter because you can read the rpm's and see just how high it's idling.
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