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Problems anyone??

This is a discussion on Problems anyone?? within the Camaro / SS forums, part of the Vehicle Specific category; Well first off I'd like to say hello to everyone on here, as this is my very first post =) ...

  1. #1
    Cunarder lv_3600's Avatar
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    1999 Camaro

    Problems anyone??

    Well first off I'd like to say hello to everyone on here, as this is my very first post =)

    Second this is regarding my 1999 Camaro Coupe. You see, this car is beyond reparable, or at least several GM dealerships seem to think so - for they see no problems with the car. HA! It is a nightmare, which is really sad. I really enjoy the car, aside from the deadly malfunctions it has.

    So i'd like to list some of the problems just incase anyone has encountered these before, knows anything about it, etc...

    1st. - i have over 50 service invoices regarding a rubbing/moaning/grinding from the rear right end when making right turns/ accelerating
    dealer solution: replaced rear disc brake pad. several other unnecessary repairs to the brakes and trans axle were performed.
    overall, no solution. problem continues. Records indicate that as of December 2000 this problem escalated to GM Engineers in order to "find a fix"

    2nd - Report on volt meter almost going into the red. Idling slow or stopped. Happened more than once, all power inside car - instrumentation, lighting all dies down. Note: little is running within the car requiring electricity.
    dealer: could not find fault
    overall, obviously dealer has provided no solution, SUPRISE!

    3rd - Report on engine surging-bucking on accelleration, lurching. Car jerks on normal accelleration. while driving, nothing has an affect on the accell. You can floor it, take your foot off the gas, absolutely nothing changes this except applying the brake. And by lurching I mean imagine your in your car, on a regular road and u just floor it, then take your foot of the gas again, then floor it, take your foot off, etc... continuing until it decides to stop.
    Obviously a deadly situation, if occured on the highway, not only could i be injured in an accident, but several others around as well.
    Dealer: Could not fault this condition.
    overall, dealer's computer cannot find anything wrong. After offering to drive around with a diagnostic computer attached to the car untill the problem reoccurs, the dealer advised me that they only have one computer and could not comply with this request.

    i hope someone has an idea as to what is going on with this car. In addition, there have been many fuses blown, light bulbs burnt out, everything you can name has probably happened. I really think that the dealerships do not feel the need to spend time with this car. GM obviously knows how to treat its customers good, providing no assistance at all.


    Sorry to those who are members of the team camaro forums, as i posted this there as well. I just want everyones input.

  2. #2
    Ebaaaaaaaaa Speedy_Gonzales's Avatar
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    welcome ......

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    congratulations on becoming a member

  4. #4
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    black
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    my camaro gerked and lunged like that my maf was bad also had short in sensor. gauges would go crazy once in a while. try changen it

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    problems with dealers

    Hey man, Im feeling for ya! Sounds to me like you need a one on one with the mang of that dealership and tell him you would like somthing in writing stating that car is road worthy and safe to drive or tell him to road test and i mean let him take it to and from work for a few days .and if he shys away from signing somthing,tell him to supply you with a rental because they are liable if theve allready worked on it and you were to get in an accident.Last resort find another dealership because their only as good as their mecanics anyways

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    problemswith dealership

    hey man im not sure about his but my 95 supercharged z28 did that surging shit and the dealer didnt wanta bother because of the vortec i ended up finding that my mass air flow was unpluged or bad i can remember .But ya never know good luck guy!

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    problems with dealers

    sorry man, I remeber what is was now,my mass air was pluged in but came loose some how and that why the dealer couldent find the problem. Something else to concider,Think back to the last time you worked on her and back step youre steps like unpluging somthing maybe to get to somthing.Thats somtimes helpfull

  8. #8
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    black
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    well thats 2 people sayen maf change it i got a stock LS1 maf sell to u for 70 plus shipping not the bad one of corse

  9. #9
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    YOU HAVE AN INTERMITTENT SHORT!

    The good news is when you find it, you are fixing the source of 2 major problems, the lurching and the volt meter's low voltage indication.

    The short has to be in the MAF or one of the major contributors to your throttle and performance curve feeding the CPU. (Could be in the O2 sensors, TPS-throttle position sensor, or the EGR circuit. Other as well but I'd start with the MAF, then TPS and work your way back to the O2's.)

    Whe you move begin moving forward under acceleration one of two things are happening...
    1) You have an exposed or disconnected wire moving by inertia into dead metal contact (shorting to ground.)
    -or-
    2) One of these sensing (thottle governing sensor/systems) enters into a higher current stage and shorts against something in the wirig harness or the sensor's receptacle housing, most likely on the sensor's side.

    You can definitely find case 1 by inspection, case 2 could get tricky. But start with a thorough visual inspection. After that you'll need a Meter and a Wiring Diagram.

    The noise your hearing from the right rear is probably the shock, but not necessarily the right one. I'd start with a visual inspection here as well, check the control arms and suspension for damage. (This is where I'm wishing I could re-read your post while I type!) Anyway, this is almost certainly the case if the noise is the worst under acceleration while in a turn. And would be nightmarish if also on a rough road. Even at bone-stock these cars just have awholelotta torque (:, enough wheel hopping take-offs alone can cause this damage. {Something is impeding on the carriage and rear drive normal motion, most likely shortening the upper or lower end of travel, as a wheel increases it's rate of rotation it experiences what is called MOI-moment-of-inertia, meaning the tire effectively has more mass (more weight) when spinning, the drive train is also experiencing the same effect, the drive shaft and the rear gearing. This means this is the point where more work is going on, add in a turn and the unequal displacement of the cars mass across the rear end, and the torque and forces that are coming into play are not being properly handled by the suspension (unequal and limited dampening through the entire range of the wheels UP and DOWN travel and relation to the chassis.) This is effecting your Limited-Slip rear and these act together to cause the vibration and the design of the wheel well and the F-body's hatch area will make a real nice speaker to report this vibration to you!

    Being tired of my wheel hopping I go out today to change the rear shocks, control arms-while repositioning, and I'm putting on 305/30/R18's (SST wheels and Kuhmo rubber.) (So some wheel-well metal is getting relocated as well!) I'll keep an eye out for probable points of damage that relate to your problem!

  10. #10
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    youre the man

    Shit, sounds like you hit it right on the button. BOW Tied i couldent have said it any better even if ide tryed LOL youde the man!

  11. #11
    We'll be back... GatorSS's Avatar
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    When did you buy this car? I would want to know the history of this car first. I know of several vehicles that exhibited similar electrical problems. All were purchased at auction. Turns out they were "hurricane salvage" vehicles that were cleaned up and "reconditioned" before being sold at auction.

    Maybe that's why the vehicles were named Ivan, Dennis, Katrina and Rita.

  12. #12
    I have a need for speed! jigger1166's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BowTied View Post
    YOU HAVE AN INTERMITTENT SHORT!

    The good news is when you find it, you are fixing the source of 2 major problems, the lurching and the volt meter's low voltage indication.

    The short has to be in the MAF or one of the major contributors to your throttle and performance curve feeding the CPU. (Could be in the O2 sensors, TPS-throttle position sensor, or the EGR circuit. Other as well but I'd start with the MAF, then TPS and work your way back to the O2's.)

    Whe you move begin moving forward under acceleration one of two things are happening...
    1) You have an exposed or disconnected wire moving by inertia into dead metal contact (shorting to ground.)
    -or-
    2) One of these sensing (thottle governing sensor/systems) enters into a higher current stage and shorts against something in the wirig harness or the sensor's receptacle housing, most likely on the sensor's side.

    You can definitely find case 1 by inspection, case 2 could get tricky. But start with a thorough visual inspection. After that you'll need a Meter and a Wiring Diagram.

    The noise your hearing from the right rear is probably the shock, but not necessarily the right one. I'd start with a visual inspection here as well, check the control arms and suspension for damage. (This is where I'm wishing I could re-read your post while I type!) Anyway, this is almost certainly the case if the noise is the worst under acceleration while in a turn. And would be nightmarish if also on a rough road. Even at bone-stock these cars just have awholelotta torque (:, enough wheel hopping take-offs alone can cause this damage. {Something is impeding on the carriage and rear drive normal motion, most likely shortening the upper or lower end of travel, as a wheel increases it's rate of rotation it experiences what is called MOI-moment-of-inertia, meaning the tire effectively has more mass (more weight) when spinning, the drive train is also experiencing the same effect, the drive shaft and the rear gearing. This means this is the point where more work is going on, add in a turn and the unequal displacement of the cars mass across the rear end, and the torque and forces that are coming into play are not being properly handled by the suspension (unequal and limited dampening through the entire range of the wheels UP and DOWN travel and relation to the chassis.) This is effecting your Limited-Slip rear and these act together to cause the vibration and the design of the wheel well and the F-body's hatch area will make a real nice speaker to report this vibration to you!

    Being tired of my wheel hopping I go out today to change the rear shocks, control arms-while repositioning, and I'm putting on 305/30/R18's (SST wheels and Kuhmo rubber.) (So some wheel-well metal is getting relocated as well!) I'll keep an eye out for probable points of damage that relate to your problem!
    Most of the time, a short will cause the Service Engine Soon light to come on.
    Does the light work/does it come on when you first turn the ignition on? If not, it may have been disconnected. Check the PCM for Diagnostic Trouble Codes.
    It sounds like the place you're taking it to, doesn't know what their doing.
    JIGGER RACIN'
    2000 Camaro SS, vert., auto., LS6 intake manifold, SLP lid, K&N filter, SLP LoudMouth II, C5 Z06 replica 17x9.5 rims
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    Either can give you a light. It depends on the system limits and normal operating impednace range, out of range is out of range. Many (some would say most) shorts turn into opens. If a circuit is protected (having a fuse, thermistor, varistor, etc.) the circuit opens opens when a short occurs. In unprotected circuits a short turns into an open because it burns out a component or wire. In higher impedance circuits that are unprotected a short can exist without resulting in an open. (I've never had another engineer tell me we had to deign in short-circuit detection, it is rarely confronted. But then most engineers are a-holes that don't care a bit about the poor sluff who will have to troubleshoot the system!)

    Opens are just far more common that shorts, the problem could be an open, but then there is a better chance there are 2 problems rather one. (The other causing the voltage dip.)

    Either way we all agree where the problem most likely lies. And you look for an open or short the same way. We also agree the shop he is taking it to has a loose colection of idiots. If we were standing around the car we'd find the problem within a 1/2 hour or so.

    Camaro's have a PIC (or PIC-based processor). And these are simple to work with, most of the engine sensors are analog and these feed an AD convertor (which are normally passively protected) having about a 2200 ohm resistor or larger. Having no more than 13.1V top battery voltage the most you can produce is 6mA. So the value being read by the processor is really a voltage level...the program then decides what is out of range.

    I have to get a wiring diagram this week (because I want to manipulate some of my sensors.) I have a friend that has some manuals on CD. I think I can reference these, do some other research, take some measurements and layout some diagrams (with values) in OrCAD or AUTO Cad and I will email these to anybody that wants them.

  14. #14
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    Mine started to lurch on acceleration, like a bad miss. Turned out to be oil from the K&N filter on my MAF sensor wires. Cleaned them up and the car runs fine.

  15. #15
    Cunarder lv_3600's Avatar
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    All i have to say is wow you all are great !
    (unlike some other people over on other camaro forums)
    well let me try to respond to everyone, i know it has been awile, sorry.
    Everyone who responeded, thank you so much, i really appreciate the fact that you at least had the time to post some similar problems you have had.
    BowTied, thank you for including so much detail. I will try everything you suggested

    GatorSS, I ordered the car in Dec. 1998, and picked it up in '99. and no i don't think my car is not named Katrina

    No service engine light either, and the light is still fuctioning. And yes i do beleive that GM dealerships don't know what they're doing, as well they are too busy to really care about the deadly problems a car might have.

  16. #16
    Ricekiller z28punk's Avatar
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    at my dealership this wouldnt leave the shop until its fixed. if we cant re-create the problem, the service manager drives it until it acts up.
    find another place to bring it to. try finding a dealership that services a lot of corvettes. those ones MUST keep their customers happy or they would lose a lot of money just from the corvette customers. thats the way my dealership is. it may seem bad, but corvette customers get better treatment. those dealerships treat newer f-bodies with the same care.

    also-not all shorts will throw an SES light. if the voltage is within a specified range, it wont throw a light. those specified ranges can be pretty broad.
    Last edited by z28punk; 02-14-2007 at 10:37 AM.

  17. #17
    Cunarder lv_3600's Avatar
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    Well the dealer i went to services a majority of pontiacs and cadillacs. After i took it to another private service repair shop, this guy, who is one of the best in Canada. He was successful in re-creating it but he had no clue where to start in order to fix it. His saying was that he would have to tear apart the entire car peice by peice to find it.

  18. #18
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    How long have you had the car?

    How many miles does it have? How many have you put on it?

    Have you modified anything?

    Most importantly...did you perform any maintenance to the vehicle just before the engine problem started?

    My thinking:
    If the MAF itself (internally) is the problem, you probably throw a code and the diagnostic would have found it more than 90% of the time.

    If the MAF connector or wiring is giving you an intermittent short or open for a small period of time (as your problem seems) diagnostics won't find it when not in that condition. The thing to think about is these nearly always have to be physically damaged to get to this state. (Did you change the air filter lately or take it somewhere for an oil change? Because they would check your air filter.)

    The only sensor wiring that can readily get jacked up without human hands is the O2 system. Heat and/or road debris. But these are a bit easier to inspect...the damage would be more obvious.

    Do you have a multi-meter?

    Also consider non-Chevy centers to find this. Places that work on general servicing, work on transmission (won't name here), work on suspension and exhaust (won't name here.) These guys often have better trained eyes for visual inspection and usually have guys who are going to school and they haven't been made mentally lazy by diagnostic equipment. But I'd only go to oe offering a free inspection or engine check light service. (But if you go somewhere for routine maintenance you can ask them to look around while they are doing there work.)

  19. #19
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    I would look at the low voltage issue..bad ground possible which could cause unusual problems.. Alternator..maybe MAF, surging is common when the sensor is dirty(like from oil from a K&N filter), but you have to watch out when cleaning the thin wires or you will ruin them. I use a maf cleaner spray. But, I would think it is related to the voltage issues not the maf. Take it too a automotive electrical shop and have them look at it.
    Sounds like the rear may just be worn out. You should be able to pick up a good used rear end for cheap(under $200) if all else fails. Also, check your panhard bar.. my stock one was a little loose on 1 side and my car made all sorts of sounds and drove me crazy trying to figure it out. Took it to a local shop and they spent a hour tightening all the bolts on the rear of the car and was the panhard bar. I also broke a weld in a aftermarket lower control arm that was not visible while on the car and made strange banging sounds when turning and hitting small holes or dips in the road.

  20. #20
    Cunarder lv_3600's Avatar
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    p.s. i should mention the rear noise started maybe 3 months after i recieved the car :S And the voltage/lurching started probably around 2-3 years after, maybe before from the date i recieved the car.

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