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Hello,

I'm new to this forum and I need help. I love my solstice and it's been a great car. However It’s been idling very rough and I have had all kinds of error codes. The battery is new but it doesn't always hold a charge. If I jump it, it may run for 20 minutes but then the traction control light, ABS light, battery light, and the engine light comes on. Then it idles rough and I lose my brakes and stearing and it dies and won't start. Then I turn the key and it says - ENGPWR REDUCED, SERVICE TRACTION - SERVICE ESC and change oil (even if I already have). I took it to my mechanic and they determind it was the alternator. It ran fine for 2 weeks and started again. I took it back and they changed a fuse and I made a left turn and it happened again. I took it back and my mechanic said take it to the Chevy dealer. I did and they didn't listen and they checked and filled the battery and the brake fluid. I said the battery is new and it just had service and the fluids were topped off. When I picked it up the ABS light came on and they took it back and cleared the code. I drove it 2 weeks and it happened again driving on the freeway with my daughter going to a family Easter get together. The dealer then says it's the alternator. So they convinced the warranty company to replace the alternator again so my mechanic did since he had already replaced it. I drove it home and made a left and the same issues. I got my money back from the clowns at the dealership and my mechanic says he is done with it. So my black beauty has sat all summer. Any ideas? :
 

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If it seems to happen when you turn left I would start to think something loose and/or a wire being pinched. If I were you I would take it to a shop in your area that specializes in auto electrics if you have one. Electrical gremlins can be hard to chase down and shops that specialize in that if they are any good can end your headaches much more quickly sometimes.

By the way, you didn't mention but anything aftermarket/modified electically on your car? Like maybe and aftermarket head unit? If so, you might want to start there.
 

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What are the error codes from the CEL? There is a ground wire on the front left of the motor (driver's side). Make sure that is tight. If you need to "see" it, let me know and I will take a pic and post it. It sounds like something is shorting the alternator and that might be it. If it is loose/dirty, fix it and see if it helps. If it does, replace your battery...these cars when the battery dies produce all sorts of electrical gremlins.
 

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What you are experiencing is usually an indication of an electrical issue.

My recommendation is that you start with the simple things to check and then move on to the more complex.

You changed the battery but have you replaced the battery cables and connectors? Pull the battery connectors and verify that they are in perfect condition both on the mating surfaces and where the connectors mate to the cable. Apply dielectric grease to ensure good contact. Verify the condition of the bolt/nut that clamps the connector to the battery. Apply force to the post to ensure that the battery is mechanically sound. Check the ground end of the ground cable to ensure it is not corroded where it connects to the chassis

Go to the engine ground on the head. Its on the top toward the front on the left side. This has been an issue on several cars. It can trap moisture and become corroded at the mating surface. Pull it up and off, clean it with a wire brush, apply dielectric grease and reinstall. Check the torque value to ensure its properly seated.

Your alternator has been replaced. But to be thorough, check the ground on the alternator to ensure its sound and not "noisy". Good grounding of the alternator is essential. Check the plus side of the output for corrosion and apply dielectric grease to the mating surfaces just to be certain its not an issue.

There are known instances of Kappa's that after being in-service for several years and sitting in a humid environment has experienced intermittent fuse connectivity issues. Starting with the BCM, pull up the passenger carpet in the foot well. Pull out the foot rest under the carpet. Pull back the carpet and with a strong light, carefully inspect the BCM and the connecting wiring. You are looking for any kinking or signs of wear, damage or corrosion that might result from the foot well being exposed to water. If the car has experienced flooding or even a serious rain event with the top down or the window open, water can accumulate in the foot well and flood the BCM. This is not likely the case, but with the issues you are experiencing its something you want to positively eliminate. There are some large cable bundle connectors there and individual wire connections. Inspect all visible connections and connectors. If you are ok with it, pull the large connectors slightly apart and reconnect them. These should not fail but you should not be having the issue you are experiencing.

While you have the BCM visible, use a fuse puller or needle nose pliers to remove each fuse, inspect it for condition (not burned out and not corroded on the pins) and if it looks good, reinsert it. The remove and replace cycle will work to clean out any connectivity issues that can accumulate over time. To be CERTAIN, you can apply a very light coat of dielectric grease to the fuse before reinserting. Just make sure you don't bridge the gap between the pins. Very LIGHT.

After returning the BCM and foot well to stowed condition, move on to the engine bay fuse box. Above and forward of the battery is the second fuse box. As with the BCM, check all the connectors, inspect the fuses and relays. Pull them and reinsert them. The relays are probably not at fault but it cant hurt to R&R and inspect them for damage.

Put everything back together and test start the car.

If you still have an electrical issue its time to go to the more esoteric issues.

Basically what you are looking for after the above are the very unusual or hard to find issues.

You may have a damaged / pinched cable that is causing an intermittent short. This means you will need to play detective and do a thorough inspection of the wiring in the engine bay and where its accessible through out the body.

I am assuming that previous to this series of events the car performed normally. Have you had any engine or chassis work done on the car that may have contributed to this problem? Did you purchase the car used and if so when and where?

Knowing its origin can help to eliminate potential issues. A used flood car can have much different issues than a car purchased from a reliable source with no history of damage.

If the car is "new" to you, go to GM and have them pull a maintenance history from their GM database. It may tell you that the car has had work done that might have contributed to the current issues or that it came from a location that could have been exposed to water damage.

Good luck and let us know how your search progresses.
 

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Very thorough, Rob.

I did not see mention of the chassis ground on the frame rail just behind the RH headlight. I know that has been a source of problems.

Prior to pulling and re-seating all of the fuses and relays in both fuse blocks you might first try simply pushing on all of them to re-seat them. They have been known to vibrate loose.

As already asked: Where are you?
 

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Like the other responses mentioned, you need to check ALL THE GROUND CONNECTIONS...and I mean all.Even to the point of removing the nut, sand or scuff the mounting area. Also check the connections to the starter; spray PB Blaster on the connections prior to loosening the nuts - and make sure to disconnect the battery before doing this!!!
From what you described certainly points to a ground issue.
 

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will be changing my battery soon and am wondering if I need to use a memory saver to insure i don't lose any computer functions. If so, can I just use my battery tender which is already hard wired to the upper battery cable terminals?
 

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A puzzling thread .......... from 5/7/18, the OP'er narry(sic) a word since his first post. But, a tremendous effort from a lot of knowledgeable forum members. In defense of the OP'er, could have met with some serious circumstances. We wish him/her well.??
:willy:
 

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i'm guessing he's one of those guys that doesn't spend a lot of time on the internet. probably hit this forum as a "last resort" and one of you guys nailed his problem. he probably tightened his battery terminals and everything was fine. we won't see him again until the next problem his mechanic can't solve. i'm just the opposite. i spend too much time on the internet. it gives me expensive ideas.
 

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My solstice would still be stock profreak if it wasn't for those expensive ideas & spending a lot time reading about the latest mod to add to the car. I now have to keep the solstice as i will never come close to getting what i have put into it . I guess that maybe a good thing. As Rob says there is never enough mods.
 

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Pinging this thread a year later because it came up in a search for my problem.

I had the same issues. I assumed it was an alternator because I was only getting 10.6 to 11.6 volts depending on how long since the battery was on a charger.

Replaced it and all was well for about 50 miles. Then it hit limp mode almost instantly - on a freeway.

It went away after a while and we drove home. Still got the light the next day.

Ordered ANOTHER alternator since the tester at Autozone showed this one failed everything (New ACDelco alternator)

Put that one in and still low voltage.

I was hoping to find out exactly where the ground straps are - and this thread told me of two of them. Both removed and cleaned - same problem. Thanks to you guys for the detailed descriptions.

Now, I know that to test an alternator, you should check the voltage at the alternator bolt. That's pretty tough on a 2.0 solstice, so I just went to the battery. Long story short - GET A LONG PROBE or something to reach in and check it at the alternator stud. Turns out I went through a lot of install / remove cycles when I really just need a new power cable to run from the alternator to the starter. Apparently this one just - gave up. With the alternator out, I decided to check the voltage drop across that cable and there it is. Only 5 volts there when it gets 12v to the starter.

I bought a 4 ft cable and ran it from the alternator back to the fuse block / battery and now I get 14.6v to the ECU.

Now - one more thing to do - get that cable repaired / replaced and get rid of my rigged cable.


Just wanted to post this here in case anyone else is having similar symptoms.
 

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Run - thank you for adding to the thread. It's nice to have it all in one "stream" so others can read through options and the possible multiple causes for the issue.
 
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