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car runs like crap

This is a discussion on car runs like crap within the General Help forums, part of the LSx Technical Help Section category; Just bought a 99 convertible Trans Am. It spits and sputters after 4500 rpm in first. I ran it with ...

  1. #1
    Member tg580's Avatar
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    1999 trans am

    car runs like crap

    Just bought a 99 convertible Trans Am. It spits and sputters after 4500 rpm in first. I ran it with a Gtech and it wouldnt break into the 14's. Where should I start?

  2. #2
    Senior Member Redphoenix1998's Avatar
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    1998 Pontiac Trans Am

    unless you have done it, do a full tune, plugs, wires, fuel filter, air filter. Fuel filter is important, a lot of people forget to change that thing

  3. #3
    Slow'er'Ass Mr. Luos's Avatar
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    I agree about the fuel filter.

    Also, I disagree with any times the 'g-tech' spits out. Take it to a real track and see how it does.
    2008 Trailblazer SS
    Yank PTB3600, Kooks 1 7/8" LT's, 4" intake, E-fans, Magnaflow, Sonnax kit, tranny cooler, tune.
    Lowered, HID's, tinted.

    1999 Pontiac Trans Am WS.6 #1747 SOLD
    531.1 RWHP 481.3 FT/Pounds all motor.

  4. #4
    Member tg580's Avatar
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    1999 trans am

    Well, I took it to the dealer and he says that the catalytic converters are bad. He wanted $1500 to replace them. Luckily I know someone who owns a shop and he is replacing them along with putting a magnaflow muffler with crome tips on it for $500.
    Last edited by tg580; 06-19-2008 at 06:03 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by tg580 View Post
    Well, I took it to the dealer and he says that the catalytic converters are bad. He wanted $1500 to replace them. Luckily I know someone who owns a shop and he is replacing them along with putting a magnaflow muffler with crome tips on it for $500.
    You could just forget the cat converters & go with a long tube set up.

  6. #6
    Member tg580's Avatar
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    red
    1999 trans am

    Well, the new cats didn't work. They helped a little bit. It ran 14.80's on the Gtech. What else should I try?

  7. #7
    Senior Member slims00ls1z28's Avatar
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    How many miles? Probably as suggested a full tune up though. Then try cleaning out the MAF.

  8. #8
    LTX N20LT4's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tg580 View Post
    Well, the new cats didn't work. They helped a little bit. It ran 14.80's on the Gtech. What else should I try?
    Have you performed a tune-up on it yet?

  9. #9
    Member tg580's Avatar
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    1999 trans am

    The car has 71000 on it. You'll have to forgive me for my ignorance here. I really dont know a whole bunch about cars. What is a MAF and how do you clean it? Also, What all should I do for the tune up?

  10. #10
    Sarge for AAG Emperor hutch1999's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by N20LT4 View Post
    Have you performed a tune-up on it yet?
    +1 sounds like some basic tune up work would help out

  11. #11
    Moderator Cutlass's Avatar
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    2001 Silverado Z71

    I agree. Get the car caught up on maintenance as described above.
    The MAF is the Mass Air Flow sensor. It is located between the airfilter and the throttle body. Looks like this:

    If your car is using a K&N type air filter and it is over oiled, the oil can get sucked into the MAF and contaminate the sensor and skew its readings. Basically the computer thinks there is less air flowing into the engine then there really is and the computer doesn't add the correct amount of fuel and the engine runs lean and crappy. Do a search on how to clean it.

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    Ebaaaaaaaaa Speedy_Gonzales's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tg580 View Post
    Well, I took it to the dealer and he says that the catalytic converters are bad. He wanted $1500 to replace them. Luckily I know someone who owns a shop and he is replacing them along with putting a magnaflow muffler with crome tips on it for $500.
    buy some CRC MAF cleaner

    Last edited by Speedy_Gonzales; 06-20-2008 at 09:34 PM.

  13. #13
    Member tg580's Avatar
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    red
    1999 trans am

    so I should pull the MAF and just spray it down with the cleaner?

  14. #14
    The Bandit Wesman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tg580 View Post
    so I should pull the MAF and just spray it down with the cleaner?
    Correct. Let it dry for a minute, reinstall it, and then plug the harness back in.

  15. #15
    Member tg580's Avatar
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    red
    1999 trans am

    do you think that a dirty one could actually make the car run about a second slower than it should?

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    Member tg580's Avatar
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    1999 trans am

    What about a Hypertech power programmer?

  17. #17
    The Bandit Wesman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tg580 View Post
    do you think that a dirty one could actually make the car run about a second slower than it should?
    In a one word answer, yes.

    The MAF tells the computer the volume of air that is coming into the engine. If the MAF reports that less air is coming in than what actually is entering the engine, it will run lean, sputter, and just plain run like crap. Easily resulting in your full second of 1/4 mile time lost.

  18. #18
    Member tg580's Avatar
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    1999 trans am

    its not really sputtering. I tjust seems like that it is not pulling real hard and revving that fast

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    Junior Member niterunnr's Avatar
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    do the tune up ALL 8 plugs and wires and dont forget the fuel filter... it could be clogging and starving for fuel that will cost u about 120 bucks for all of it and check the air filter also dont know how much that is but it shouldnt be much since u can get a k & n for about 50 bucks

  20. #20
    Ebaaaaaaaaa Speedy_Gonzales's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tg580 View Post
    so I should pull the MAF and just spray it down with the cleaner?
    spray the needle DO NOT TOUCH IT.......spray and clean up the thottle body and spray 3 seconds into intake (you can buy thottle body cleaner if you like or use MAF cleaner for both)

    Quote Originally Posted by tg580 View Post
    do you think that a dirty one could actually make the car run about a second slower than it should?
    my car with a dirty MAF was running only 7 lbs of air. Clean it should run around 22 lbs...cleaning mine made a huge difference

    Quote Originally Posted by tg580 View Post
    What about a Hypertech power programmer?
    waste of money

    Quote Originally Posted by Cutlass View Post
    ^^^^ Not true. Its 2000 to 2002 only on that extended warrenty
    He appears to have a 1999
    I stand correctd will edit post
    Last edited by Speedy_Gonzales; 06-20-2008 at 09:35 PM.

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