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2000 firebird 3.8 v6 problem

This is a discussion on 2000 firebird 3.8 v6 problem within the General Help forums, part of the LSx Technical Help Section category; Hi, I'm new so I'm not sure this is the right place for this post. Anyway, I have a 2000 ...

  1. #1
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    Midnight Blue
    2000 Firebird

    Post 2000 firebird 3.8 v6 problem

    Hi, I'm new so I'm not sure this is the right place for this post.


    Anyway, I have a 2000 Pontiac Firebird 3.8 v6 I've owned for a year.

    It has a bit of a hard start since I've owned it, so small I dismissed it...
    Until now. Since about 3 months ago, I have been experiencing a progression of the same problem getting worse.
    Now the car rarely starts on the first try, and I have to hold it for a good 5 seconds or so before it will finally start up.
    It lopes around with a rough idle at first then smooths out after about 30 seconds or so. It has a noticeable miss but I'm not sure that's
    directly related to my problem at hand.

    So, after I get it started and warmed up I get in and start driving. It will go just fine for about 45 mins to an hour, however I've noticed that the car hangs at low rpms, and pressing the accelerator slowly doesnt raise the rpms. i have to almost floor it, shifting to a lower gear, to get the rpms back up. (best way I know how to explain that one) But after driving about 30 miles or so, the engine shuts off. I lose breaks, power steering, and everything.
    And it will not start until it cools off or whatever. Usually after 20 minutes or so. Anyway, most of the time the "Trac off" light is my first indicator, followed by sputtering out of the tailpipe like a "putt, putt, putt" sound. I'm stumped here. Ive had mechanics look at it. I just want to get it running right again.

    Recap:
    1. long, hard start
    2. rough idle with miss
    3. strong fuel smell (forgot to mention. the cats were removed)
    4. trac light off comes on, car sputters then dies
    5. will not start back until it sits for a while
    repeat step 1

    What I've done so far:

    Replaced fuel filter
    Replaced EGR valve
    Replaced mass airflow sensor
    replaced plugs and wires
    replaced ICM
    Replaced Crankshaft sensor (didnt have it reset, could be my problem. idk)
    Replaced Temp Sensor
    Replaced battery and alternator
    Replaced Serpentine belt
    Removed throttle body and cleaned it inside out
    Replaced air filter
    Checked fuel pressure
    checked coils for fire


    I don't know what else it could be, other than the fuel pump.....

    I appreciate anyone that takes the time to read all this and for any ideas.

  2. #2
    Senior Member theorangeguy's Avatar
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    Black / White
    '00 T/A M6/'15 Hemi Truck

    is the car throwing any codes? I dont remember what its called, but the controller for the coil packs was an issue with a 3.8 I had a while back...it caused all kinds of issues. We really need some codes to narrow it down tho...the traction control light coming on when the motor shuts off is a weird one...have you checked all the grounds for the car? I know that can be a lot but if you have a bad ground it could kill the car pretty easily.

    almost forgot...have you checked the fuel pressure at all? fuel pressure regulator or the pump itself could be an issue but cant know for sure until you check the pressure.
    Last edited by theorangeguy; 06-30-2014 at 07:10 AM.

  3. #3
    Senior Member theorangeguy's Avatar
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    '00 T/A M6/'15 Hemi Truck

    I also just noticed you had the Crank Shaft Position Sensor replaced...I've read a few places that this issue can be caused by that sensor getting heat soaked. So even if you replace that sensor it may not fix the problem.

    Heat soak send bad or no info to Modual under coils Thus Over heating it
    And it goes out as well. Random misfire. Lean bank 1 Will show
    just b4 it all dies. When it does die for last time is sends mass of High voltage
    spark form coils Back thru system to ECU and Camshaft position sensor.
    it seems that this is a pretty big problem with the 3800 which is interesting because I know these cars pretty well and I have never heard of it. Maybe I just got lucky...

    http://www.carcomplaints.com/Pontiac...comes_on.shtml
    Last edited by theorangeguy; 06-30-2014 at 07:15 AM.

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