View Full Version : 96 firebird v6 3.8L acting up...

03-15-2009, 05:48 PM
got a question on my v6...hopefully you v6 guys can help me? it has 177,000 miles on it, automatic, and it has an intermittent problem.

it's been very moody for the past few months...so now i have it sitting in the driveway. there is no SES light on. sometimes the starter will crank but the motor won't turn over, tho sometimes it cranks right up and runs perfect. and even then sometimes it'll stall when coming to a complete stop during driving. i can still hear the fuel pump every time i turn on the computer, which means the pump is working, but sometimes it'll start and sometimes it just won't -_- i have tryed working with the weather and seeing if it was the florida heat, but it also does it in the cold

any ideas for me guys? i'd really appreciate it! thanks

03-15-2009, 06:16 PM
Any other symptoms??? Have you tried the fuel filter? Also try the oil pressure sending unit...... just a couple of options.

03-15-2009, 08:21 PM
hmm, sounds like a tough one. Let me welcome ya to the forum though!

03-15-2009, 09:28 PM
fuel injector's clogged? checked your spark plugs? i'd say opti but you're lucky and dont have one lol

03-15-2009, 09:49 PM
There could be quite a few different options. i would start with the cheapest and work your way up. First thing i would do is get a fuel pressure gauge and test that, out pumps have a tendency to die off slowly sometimes. If that checks ok, i would then start looking at sensors. I would first clean the maf real good. My next option would be the Crank position sensor ( a very common failure with our cars. that acts like described). Their are a few things to start with. I would also consider taking it to get scanned anyways, as some codes have been known to set without showing a light. Hope this helps.

03-15-2009, 10:55 PM
gsometimes the starter will crank but the motor won't turn over

do you mean the starter turns, but the motor does not? Or is the motor turning but not starting up.

If it's the former, it is missing teeth on the flywheel.

03-16-2009, 03:10 AM
thanks for the input guys!
didn't mention before but i got this car last week from my buddy, he shipped off so i figured i would fulfill his legacy lol...
the fuel filter was replaced about a month ago
started it up in the middle of the day today and drove it for 10-15min with no problems, parked it, turned it off, and it started right back up. but then let it sit for 30 more min...and won't start for me. :banghead:
came home about an hour ago at 2am and it's about 55 degrees, car cranks right up and drives perfect :confused:
haha a tough one indeed...but i am getting the feeling it has to do with the engine temp...something is getting too hot and stops working when the car sits after running maybe?

and i meant the motor is turning but not starting, sounds like it realllyyyy wants to, but doesn't quite make it.

thanks again for all the suggestions, hopefully this v6 will be up and running healthy soon, stoked to kill some v8's(slowstangs) with a v6 bird instead of my ls-1:dood:

03-17-2009, 10:07 PM
well now, i've experienced the same consistent symptoms. the car will not start after it has head soaked, if it does it dies under load, or i can try to rev it up and the revs will be jumpy and it will die on me.

this does seem to match the symptoms of a bad crank position sensor, which is sensitive to heat. i got a home made noid light to touch on sensors and ground to test if they are getting power. everything seems to work but i can not find the crank position sensor to test it. i thought it was the connection i found on the driver side top, on/behind the crank pulley, but i'm not sure what that is, and it doesn't match pictures i've seen of the crank position sensor. of course it had a nice caked layer of oil leakage on it, so i could be wrong.

does anyone know where the crank position sensor is?

03-18-2009, 08:48 AM
To quote a couple of the guys here.....pics or ban!!!!!

03-18-2009, 09:15 AM

03-23-2009, 09:34 PM
this diagram is either upside down or incorrect all together...

03-23-2009, 09:38 PM
It is upside down. Note how the water pump is at the bottom of the photo instead of the top, and the top of the photo resembles a crankshaft moreso than a 3800 intake plenum.

03-24-2009, 10:13 AM
ah, i see. one last question...
when i replace the crankshaft position sensor will i have to do a case relearn?

04-09-2009, 09:47 PM
well after full diag it ended up being a bad ignition module. thanks for your input guys

04-09-2009, 09:54 PM
just curious but how can you tell if you have a bad ignition module? also, where can you find one?

04-10-2009, 08:55 AM
i beileve he is talking about the icm.

04-11-2009, 09:25 PM
yessir. the ignition control module found right below the coil packs.

04-14-2009, 07:01 AM
I never did like the location of the coil packs right on top of the valve covers.