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Died while driving - 2007

 
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Old 11 Apr 2019, 10:38 am
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Default Died while driving - 2007

On my PT cruiser 2007 convertible base model - driving home last night the car jolted and then died. I pulled over and had headlights for the longest time but before the wrecker arrived the headlights would not come on. I am getting three codes that all have to do with the camshaft position sensor.

The other weird thing is now if you take the key out of the ignition all the lights stay on. It says door ajar but the door is closed.

Could it be the alternator? The wrecker guy said it was the alternator for sure but I am never seen one die going down the road doing 70 mph.

I am not knowledgeable enough on this car to determine the issue but I wanted to ask here.

I called a mechanic and he said the car was most likely running off battery alone and that's not enough to run the computer.
I'm just making sure that sounds right. I am the second owner and to my knowledge this is the original alternator from it being new 80,000 miles ago.
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Old 11 Apr 2019, 12:26 pm
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Default Re: Died while driving - 2007

Your mechanic likely got it right. The PCM will act very screwy under low voltage. It's likely either the alternator or a dead battery. Last year, I lost a battery like this while stopped at a stop sign. It all just went at once and I found that my high-dollar Optima battery was toast but the alternator was fine.

Have him check the alternator and the battery. To properly check the battery, it will need to be charged and then load tested.
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Old 11 Apr 2019, 01:05 pm
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Default Re: Died while driving - 2007

Thank you so much for your reply. It's been a fun car. Only thing that has gone wrong until now is the oil pressure switch. I will charge the battery and do the load test and report back.

I have never heard of a battery dying going down the road but I am no mechanic by any stretch of the imagination. I am a wannabe ASE LOL

I'll test with the multimeter and report back.
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Old 11 Apr 2019, 01:13 pm
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Default Re: Died while driving - 2007

Thanks for the help!
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Old 11 Apr 2019, 03:29 pm
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Default Re: Died while driving - 2007

So I pulled the codes and I have P0340 and PO1634. Would the camshaft position sensor go out going down the road and cause this?
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Old 11 Apr 2019, 04:38 pm
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Default Re: Died while driving - 2007

Yes. The camshaft position sensor can cause the engine to quit, but that's about all it will do. And many of the late model PT's will continue to run in a sort of rough-running "limp home mode".

A bad camshaft sensor usually won't cause the other electrical issues you have. But low voltage can trigger a camshaft sensor code. Plus the P01634 indicates low voltage in the ignition. If me, I'd check the alternator and battery first.
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Old 11 Apr 2019, 04:49 pm
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Default Re: Died while driving - 2007

P1634 is low voltage. I think the alternator and battery issues fit that. The cam position sensor will not generally kill the car. They will go into a sort of limp home mode and not top 2200 rpm or something similar. At least that was my experience. You posted another full thread asking about compression. This doesn't sound like a compression issue to me, but it is easy enough to check.
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Old 11 Apr 2019, 05:10 pm
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Default Re: Died while driving - 2007

Was on the side of the hwy with all lights on trying to crank it for about an hour. I guess the po1634 could be from that?
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Old 11 Apr 2019, 06:32 pm
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Default Re: Died while driving - 2007

I would suggest first fixing the camshaft issue before looking at the generator. You only got the code for the camshaft sensor circuit issue. Just fully charge the battery, reset the codes with an OBDII tool, and check for codes again.

Usually if the alternator had failed your battery light should have come on. You should have also gotten a code for it.

The confusion about the possibility of the alternator not working is the battery being drained by leaving the headlights on and trying to start it for an hour.

If you don't have an OBDII tool you need to get one to reset the codes otherwise the original codes will come back.

Check the wiring going to the camshaft sensor. Post what you find out.

Also check the battery cables at the battery. Make sure they are making good contact and tight.
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Last edited by ptcruisersteve; 11 Apr 2019 at 06:36 pm.
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Old 12 Apr 2019, 04:59 am
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Default Re: Died while driving - 2007

Quote:
Originally Posted by shultzee13 View Post
Was on the side of the hwy with all lights on trying to crank it for about an hour. I guess the po1634 could be from that?
Sounds like the battery/alternator was ok. I'd check the timing belt.
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