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My 2008 Cruiser died this morning. Won't start. 20 below zero.

 
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Old 01 Jan 2014, 12:01 pm
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Default My 2008 Cruiser died this morning. Won't start. 20 below zero.

I had a very sad start to my new year. My cruiser has died. Literaly died in my parking lot. It's been running great all along, there were no warnings, nothing. Got in it this morning and it wouldn't start. Made a weird grinding noise, a clicking noise and I heard the fuel pump come on. I tried several times and it still wouldn't start. I even tried jumpstarting it, and it still wouldn't start. After all that, now I get no noise at all when I turn the key, except for a slow clicking noise. I don't hear the fuel pump come on anymore or the starter trying to turn over. So I think I did even more damage to it than what was already there. It's ruined. I definitely killed any life that may have been left in it. The battery can't be dead cuz the radio, lights and everything else works perfectly, and since a jumpstart didn't work either, then it has to be something else. It just won't start. It was about 20 below zero this morning and I had tried the remote starter to start it up. And apparently it never started. So, I tried with the key and that's when I found out it died. I am so angry! I had a car that was a 96 ford aspire and it started up without fail, no matter how cold it was. So I know it can't be the weather. My car is a 2008. I know it's gonna cost a fortune to fix it and I am not rich. I refuse to save up every penny I own and be broke for months, trying to save up the money to fix it, only to have it break down again in the future and drain my bank account. So, my question is this. How much do you think I could get if I scrapped the car for scrap metal? I could try selling it, but I don't think anyone is gonna want to buy a car that don't run, especially if it's gonna cost a fortune to fix. So anybody have any ideas or advice for me? It would greatly be appreciated. I live in Maine, by the way.
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Old 01 Jan 2014, 01:24 pm
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Default Re: My 2008 Cruiser died this morning. Won't start. 20 below zero.

Quote:
Originally Posted by hellokittycruiser View Post
I had a very sad start to my new year. My cruiser has died. Literaly died in my parking lot. It's been running great all along, there were no warnings, nothing. Got in it this morning and it wouldn't start. Made a weird grinding noise, a clicking noise and I heard the fuel pump come on. I tried several times and it still wouldn't start. I even tried jumpstarting it, and it still wouldn't start. After all that, now I get no noise at all when I turn the key, except for a slow clicking noise. I don't hear the fuel pump come on anymore or the starter trying to turn over. So I think I did even more damage to it than what was already there. It's ruined. I definitely killed any life that may have been left in it. The battery can't be dead cuz the radio, lights and everything else works perfectly, and since a jumpstart didn't work either, then it has to be something else. It just won't start. It was about 20 below zero this morning and I had tried the remote starter to start it up. And apparently it never started. So, I tried with the key and that's when I found out it died. I am so angry! I had a car that was a 96 ford aspire and it started up without fail, no matter how cold it was. So I know it can't be the weather. My car is a 2008. I know it's gonna cost a fortune to fix it and I am not rich. I refuse to save up every penny I own and be broke for months, trying to save up the money to fix it, only to have it break down again in the future and drain my bank account. So, my question is this. How much do you think I could get if I scrapped the car for scrap metal? I could try selling it, but I don't think anyone is gonna want to buy a car that don't run, especially if it's gonna cost a fortune to fix. So anybody have any ideas or advice for me? It would greatly be appreciated. I live in Maine, by the way.
Yes weather will be a factor. If you think there is a car out there that will never fail, please let us all know. I want one. First Did anyone check the fluids? Oil antifreeze ect. Was there any heat to determine if it started and died or just never started? When was the battery terminals cleaned and how old is the battery? Mileage on the pt? You could have a number of things that are of little cost compared to the drastic steeps you mention. $400. scrap roughly. So worth way more as a non runner. But you're getting way ahead of yourself here. Remove the battery and charge and clean the terminals first. And go from there. Are you using a block heater? This is common in your area.
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Old 01 Jan 2014, 01:26 pm
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Default Re: My 2008 Cruiser died this morning. Won't start. 20 below zero.

I'm pretty sure all you have is a dead (really dead) battery. You also have to check the cables from the battery to make sure there's no corrosion on the ends. The other parts of the car that work (radio, lights etc. take very little voltage whereas the starter needs to be fully charged to turn over the engine.

You can put the battery on an overnight trickle charge till it gets up to full strength or attach the jumper cables to a running vehicle with the engine revved up for a few minutes to get enough voltage into yours to start.
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Old 01 Jan 2014, 03:11 pm
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Lightbulb Re: My 2008 Cruiser died this morning. Won't start. 20 below zero.

Once you determine that the battery is good & charged...If it is still 'grinding' and/or 'clicking',there's a chance that with -20* temps,the starter solenoid plunger is sticking(not popping out!),you may be able to make it pop out by tapping/banging on the top of it with a broom handle,piece of wood,or similar;I had the same thing happen after that little cold snap amonth ago,and it only got down to a low of 37*,here in S. Texas!And once I banged on the solenoid,while at the same time having someone turn the key,my PT fired up.
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Old 01 Jan 2014, 04:30 pm
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Default Re: My 2008 Cruiser died this morning. Won't start. 20 below zero.

Is 20 below zero the coldest temp you have tried to start your PT? Do you know the oil viscosity that was put in your car last? If it is a 10w20 or 10w30, it will be harder to start than 5w20 or 5w30. -20F is the low limit of 10w-xx. Also a partially charged battery may not be enough to engage the starter, though enough for radio, lights, etc.

Last edited by Gold2006; 01 Jan 2014 at 04:33 pm.
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Old 01 Jan 2014, 05:13 pm
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Default Re: My 2008 Cruiser died this morning. Won't start. 20 below zero.

All good comments ^^^^^

Nothing good happens in January to cars!
PT's battery is hidden by a duct, so it's EZ for cables to get corroded and be unnoticed.

After years of owning old cars, when it's below zero, it's always the time for something to go bad, partly because conditions are extreme, and partly because nothing good happens in January to cars!
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Old 01 Jan 2014, 05:59 pm
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Default Re: My 2008 Cruiser died this morning. Won't start. 20 below zero.

Sounds like the battery wasn't strong enough to turn over the car, buy a new battery and clean the battery terminals.

How many mile on the PT, how old is the battery, I hope your running synthetic oil, Mobil 1 AFE 0w-30 is your friend when it gets cold.

How old are the plugs and wires, cars that are in tune start easier?

Don't throw the car out with the bath water.

BTW if you own a house, buy a trickle charger for the battery, will keep it fresh and on cold night can keep it fully charged. Another trick is plop a drop light with 100W bulb and plop it in the engine bay to keep things a little warmer.

See you have a remote starter, big no no on canbus system, check that out, could be source of the problem, monkeys hack those things into the harness and the electronics on the remote starters can take adump when get cold!
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Old 02 Jan 2014, 06:12 am
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Default Re: My 2008 Cruiser died this morning. Won't start. 20 below zero.

Hello kitty, Don't be bummed out. Your not alone. 20 below starting is asking a lot to ask from a vehicle if it is not prepared for real cold weather. A lot of good suggestions have already been given.

PT batteries are physically small so you need to get a premium grade or a circular cell type with lots of cold cranking amps.

5w30 synthetic for cold temperatures is better than regular oil. Check your owners manual to see if 0w30 synthetic is ok to use.

I am not a fan of trickle chargers, other than for storage. Buy a six amp charger with an ammeter on it. If the battery is low, it will start charging at maybe 5 amps and slowly drop down. When the ammeter shows 1 or 2 amps, the battery is pretty well charged up. With an almost dead battery, it may take 8 hours to recharge it.

I am not a fan of remote starters unless I am close enough to the car to hear the car actually start.

Upgrade the large starter cables [both neg. and pos.] to the next larger size. And keep the battery terminals and the large starter stud connection corrosion free and greased [protected].

As to your immediate problem, if you heard a grinding sound, it's possible that the starter drive wasn't engaging due to the cold. A new or rebuilt may be necessary, and the flywheel teeth should be looked at while it is out.

None of this is terribly expensive. Let us know the outcome. Good luck.
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Old 05 Jan 2014, 08:23 pm
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Default Re: My 2008 Cruiser died this morning. Won't start. 20 below zero.

Thanks everyone for all your help. I got a new battery put in, unfortunately, I got screwed over royally by Wal-Mart mechanics. My power door locks don't work anymore, I have no radio, and no lights on the instrument panel in the middle of the dashboard. They denied breaking that stuff, and refused to fix it. I got a refund for the battery which was 80 bucks. But now I'm left with a car with a bunch of broken stuff in it. I am furious! Wal-Mart is nothing but a bunch of lying crooks. I will never let them near my car again. The manager in the auto center laughed at me when I told him they broke that stuff. Litterally laughed at me, and said they didn't do it. I even threatened to call the cops on them and they still denied breaking anything. I did call the cops and they told me they couldn't do anything cuz it was a civil matter. Civil??? I would think that it would be more along the lines of criminal, since they broke things that weren't broken before I brought it in there. I asked them to replace the battery, not break my damned locks and radio and dashboard lights. In the end, the store manager gave me a refund for the battery and I left. Now I'm stuck with a car with a bunch of things that don't work and a free battery. Ive been told by a few people that it's a fuse problem, but I have no idea how ot put them in and I don't know anyone that knows how to put them in. And I went to VIP to ask them to put some in or at least sell them to me, and they said they don't even have a list that tells them what kind I need. So I'm thinking it may not be fuse related? Any help would be greatly appreciated here.
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Old 05 Jan 2014, 09:13 pm
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Default Re: My 2008 Cruiser died this morning. Won't start. 20 below zero.

Kitty,

Sounds like it IS a fuse problem and it sounds like they (Wal-Mart) might have grounded out the positive cable while changing out the battery. Looking at a chart of the 2nd generation cruisers, the fuse for the radio is No#10, Instruments is #21 (but that might be the gauges themselves and not the lights) and No#20 is for the radio. To me, it wold be more like and IOD (Ignition Off Draw) fuse that might have blown which covers a number of different items but unfortunately there's a couple IOD fuses to be checked out.

All I can say is to try and find someone that can check out your IPM (Integrated Power Module) which is what they call the fuse box in the engine compartment. Just needs someone with a voltage meter and an hours worth of his time. A garage that does mechanical work ought to do it. Just tell him a short story of what might have happened when the battery was changed and you need the fuses checked out.
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