'93 Sunbird..ok its not the head gasket, now what?

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:confused: I posted a few days ago about my car running crappy;(quick recap) idling rough and the temperature gage going up and down at random times with no actual overheating then after a couple of days of this it just wont acclerate above 15mph and it feels like I'm pusing the gas and letting off over and over. I had the O2 sensor replaced and it ran fine for a week then started again so the mechanic said it was a bad replacement O2sensor so he replaced it again and it ran fine for another week then it happened again. Okay, new question. My friend checked and said that the head gasket isn't blown but isn't sure what the hell it is. Could this be a bad coolant temperature sensor or are the symptoms wrong? I'm sorry if I sound like an idiot but I'm a woman and don't know a thing about cars. Thanks.

posted by  stresstime

hey again, yea that last post got out of hand wouldn't you say?

a bad coolant temp sensor could cause the problem, depending on how drastic the situation really is i don't know. it is easy to mis diagnose faulty sensors. does the car run good when it is cool, and gets worse as it warms up? if so then look into the coolant temp sensor, or idle air system.

if the problem is as serious as it sounds it is probably something a little more drastic. i would first check to make sure all four spark plugs are getting a good spark. is this a four cylinder or 6 cylinder, and is it an automatic or manual?

posted by  carls47807

excellent question!! :clap:

posted by  dodger65

i'm not questioning your friend's methods, but how did he determine that the gasket was not blown? the whole "white smoke...smells like antifreeze" thing along w/ the temp. fluctuations really does sound like a head gasket, but i am also not in front of the car, looking at it... :doh:

posted by  dodger65

It is a 4 cyl automatic transmission. I'm not sure how it was tested, I just know he did something that he said should have spit water out if it were the head gasket. I don't smell antifreeze all the time, mainly it happened after I had to drive it a few times in one day to take my kids here and there. I also haven't seen anymore white smoke come from the exhaust after parking! I think my car just hates me. :cry: I had a Ford Festiva before this piece of crap and I tell you what, they may not be much on looks but I NEVER had to get it fixed during the almost two hundred thousand miles I put on it...except for the usual battery, tires and such. I MISS IT!! Thanks for the replies.

posted by  stresstime

well, i'm sure glad we had the whole 3.1 discussion, then... :laugh :wink2: ing:

posted by  dodger65

You know replacing oxygen sensors on a weekly basis should be telling your mechanic something. A dancing temp gauge should also be telling him something. Coolant will take out an O2 sensor quite easily. Steam in the water galleries will create gauge problems.

posted by  Wally

now i'm not positive, but i think if you take this car to someone who really has a good insight into automobiles they will be able to find the problem fairly quickly. usually a minor miss or small issue will baffle mechanics. if it is as serious as you say there HAS to be some underlying problem your mechanic is missing.

good luck.

posted by  carls47807

Maybe a certain Grand Prix driver is the one working on her car. Wouldn't surprise me at all. BTW, he's mighty quiet today. Do you think he's out bending someone's intake?

posted by  vwhobo

I think I will take it to another mechanic. I only took it back to the same one with the second o2 sensor incident because I was pissed and I was going to make sure I wasn't charged for it. Thanks for all of the help, but if I could ask one last yes or no question I will leave ya'll alone until the next car problem I have lol. If I have a blown head gasket after all would the car show signs of overheating besides the temperature gauge? (like bubbling sound, hiss, steam...) Just wondering.

posted by  stresstime

Maybe. It all depends on how badly it's "blown" and where the coolant is going. Sorry to sound evasive but sometimes a blown head gasket is hard enough to isolate in person, much less online. That being said, all of your descriptions sound like that is in fact what it is. Good luck.

posted by  vwhobo

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