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2008 PT Cruiser occasionally stops and shuts off.

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Old 13 Jun 2017, 08:55 pm
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Join Date: Jun 2017
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Default 2008 PT Cruiser occasionally stops and shuts off.

Hi there. I would first like to say that I am not car-savvy at all and I don't know very much, but I will try to be as detailed as I can be.

I own a 2008 PT Cruiser. Whenever I start it up, the car vibrates very hard to the point where you can see the dash vibrating and can feel it on the wheel. Sometimes it will be better to where it won't be vibrating the dash, but a lot of the time it is. It does not do this when I put the car in park, but when I am not moving in reverse or drive it will do this a majority of the time.

Sometimes the horn works and other times it does not. When I first bought the car, it did not work at all. I took it to a shop that said they got it working, but it seems like it only works fifty percent of the time that I press it.

The major problem, sometimes the car just completely shuts itself off. The steering wheel will become very hard to turn, braking is almost impossible if I do not use my e-brake, all the lights will turn off, stereo has no power, and I obviously cannot accelerate. It's just as if the car isn't on.

The car has 103k miles on it. It has been in an accident but it was rear-ended before I bought it. I do not have a warranty for it. I have taken it to a mechanic three separate times who has told me that he couldn't find anything wrong with it.

I'm at a loss and I really need a vehicle. If anyone out there can help me, I beg you. I don't know much about cars, but if you can help me I will try to provide you with any information I can.
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Old 13 Jun 2017, 09:18 pm
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Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Texas
Posts: 15,518
Default Re: 2008 PT Cruiser occasionally stops and shuts off.

Welcome to the forum

The vibration when you put the vehicle into gear could be that the upper and lower torque struts are worn out and need to be replaced. If you took it to a competent mechanic, they should be able to tell from a simple inspection if the rubber inserts in the torque struts are torn.

As far as the horn, try pressing in several different spots around the horn pad.

Do you have information if the timing belt had been replaced on it before you bought it? That, and several other components, should be replaced at about 100,000 miles. It can be anywhere from $900-$1500 to have that work done.
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Old 13 Jun 2017, 09:24 pm
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Join Date: Aug 2014
Location: Thousand Oaks, CA
Posts: 7,495
Default Re: 2008 PT Cruiser occasionally stops and shuts off.

Does your engine light come on? If so post the engine trouble codes?

Your ignition switch might not be working properly cutting off battery voltage to the engine.

Do you have many keys on your key ring?

Have you done a battery load test to verify your battery and battery charging system is working properly.
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Last edited by ptcruisersteve; 13 Jun 2017 at 09:29 pm.
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Old 14 Jun 2017, 06:55 am
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Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Lake Wales, FL
Posts: 5,011
Default Re: 2008 PT Cruiser occasionally stops and shuts off.

First thing to do is take it to your local Advance, Autozone or O'Reilly and ask them to run the engine codes for you. Ask for a print out of those codes and post them here. Not knowing the history of the car, you may just need a good tune up and engine mounts, like rckstein said about the vibration. Steve has good info about the engine shutting down.

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