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New here--Rough Idle & Weird Smell

 
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Old 27 Mar 2015, 09:38 am
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Default New here--Rough Idle & Weird Smell

I checked all the other recent threads on rough idle and while some had similarities, they didn't answer my question. I have a 2008 PT Cruiser standard base model that I bought from a used car dealership February 7th this year. It has 93K miles on it. We've had a few issues since we bought it and up to this point all my answers were found on previous threads. We replaced both components of the ignition switch since we got it and have it getting a new timing belt and water pump next month when it's a little warmer. When we had below zero temps, I noticed it didn't like to start and it was pain until it got warm. Now for the last three days every time I start it, the idle would sound rough but once I got on the road, no problems. I just thought it had to do with the cooler temps at night lately as I had issues with the idle during our cold snap and figured it's just a car that hates cold temps. But this morning I started it and within 30 seconds the idle got really rough and shaking and then the check engine light came on. It sounded like it was going to stall, so I just shut it off. Waited a minute, started it again and same thing happened as well as a really rich smell coming out of the exhaust. Did the key code and nothing came up. Took it to NAPA and O'Reilly's to have them check it and no codes as well. Need help as to where to start looking. I need this car to get me to and from work and this just makes me too nervous. I'm ready to hand it over to hubby and take his truck from now on.

Thanks for any help.

Jennifer
2008 PT Cruiser Cool Vanilla
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Old 27 Mar 2015, 10:34 am
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Default Re: New here--Rough Idle & Weird Smell

Hate to say so Jennifer but I think you might have an internal problem. You might have a small crack in the head gasket. Are you loosing any coolant? That smell could be coolant mixing and burning in one of the cylinders. That's only guessing on my part so you need to have some tests done like a compression check or cylinder leak down test. That will either confirm or rule out internal damage.

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Old 27 Mar 2015, 10:41 am
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Default Re: New here--Rough Idle & Weird Smell

Gosh I hope it's not the head gasket. That would be a disaster. There is nothing leaking. It's just a super rich smell from the exhaust. So to do those tests can anyone do them or do I need to take it in to a garage? My dad and uncle are mechanics but they know more about the older cars before computers took them over. My uncle has had three PT Cruisers and knows how to do the timing belt and water pump along with a few other issues but never had a head gasket situation. Thanks for the reply and I'll go the welcome section like you asked.


Jennifer
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Old 27 Mar 2015, 10:46 am
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Default Re: New here--Rough Idle & Weird Smell

That rich smell (probably unburned fuel) could also be a non-functioning sensor (IAC or TPS), one that's located near or on the throttle body. Those test should be easy for your dad or uncle if they have the right equipment.


IAC = Idle Air Controller

TPS = Throttle Position Sensor
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Old 27 Mar 2015, 10:52 am
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Default Re: New here--Rough Idle & Weird Smell

And there is the key words, right equipment. I'll call my dad on break to see if they have the equipment needed and I guess go from there. I'd hate to take it to Chrysler but that just may be where it ends up. I really wish car dealerships were more honest about used cars. I would rather pay a little extra for the car knowing everything was fixed or get a reasonable price with a list of repairs needed than being blindsided by this. Every thing people told me about disaster stories with Cruisers is starting to come true. It's always something. Granted some issues super small, but I haven't had one week of just peaceful driving yet.
Really frustrating as I am paying a lot of money for it.

Jennifer
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Old 27 Mar 2015, 11:14 am
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Default Re: New here--Rough Idle & Weird Smell

If you bought it in February & are making payments...isn't there some kind of warranty..??
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Old 27 Mar 2015, 11:28 am
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Default Re: New here--Rough Idle & Weird Smell

No warranty except the 1 million mile power train warranty. In Minnesota, if the factory warranty has been exhausted, used car dealerships don't need to offer a warranty. Lemon Law doesn't apply either. I just made the first payment on this car last week.
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Old 27 Mar 2015, 06:01 pm
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Default Re: New here--Rough Idle & Weird Smell

A MILLION MILE POWER TRAIN WARRANTY Where can I get one of those?
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Old 27 Mar 2015, 06:21 pm
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Default Re: New here--Rough Idle & Weird Smell

Quote:
Originally Posted by JenR1974 View Post
Gosh I hope it's not the head gasket.
I would not think it would not be that drastic! Find a local shop that has a DRB 3 or equivalent (Snap On). Have him check the fuel trims... easy
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Old 27 Mar 2015, 06:45 pm
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Default Re: New here--Rough Idle & Weird Smell

Check engine light is still on so hubby chanced it and went to auto parts store to have them try and get the codes. My dad thinks Cam sensor. I hope that's all it is. The dealership we bought it from offers million mile power train warranty on all used cars with less than 100K miles. It was a big perk for us. Plus we've done business with them for over 30 years.
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