98 GS shuts off when using turn signals


mj585
03-15-2011, 05:11 PM
Hello, first post, so first wanted to thank you for great tips I found on the site :smile:

My 1998 Buick Regal GS 4d sd turns off when using the turn signals (either left or right). Here are the "symptoms" I'm finding with the problem:

- The problem is not constant, it's happening at greater frequency recently but it doesn't always happen.

- If I start the car, then turn on Right/Left signals, usually (but not always) the car would turn off.

- When the car does turn off due to signalling, it can start again but the same problem happens (shuts off if I try to activate a turn signal). So what I do is engage and disengage the parking brakes several times then I try to start the car again. The car would then start and the turn signals would work just fine.

- Whenever this happens, the dashboard would reset the display options I had (like trip distance and what not).

- One time when this happened (and only one time), I noticed that the temparature control was reset to Fahrenheit (I had it on Celsius)

- Twice now the car wouldn't start, I only hear a hissing sound but doesn't ignite. (Turn signals are not involved in this, they're off) .. It starts again after taking key out and back in few times, activating and deactivating the parking brake several times, and few kicks on the steering column.



I did search the forum (but did not want to post in old threads) and found similar issues, and it seems every comment/suggestion on the web is pointing towards the ignition switch module being the problem.

A mechanic who is a friend of mine, however, seems to be convinced that it's the turn signal switch saying that it's a very common problem. I searched and searched to find anything suggesting the same but if anything I keep finding people saying they've replaced the multifunction switch and the problem (while may initially looked to be solved) returned --until they've replaced the ignition switch.

So what I'm wondering is, as I don't have any experience with car repairs myself, how can I test whether it's one of those two (or could it be something else? PCM?) without having to fork $600+ for changing the turn signal switch only to find out it wasn't really the problem?

Based on what I've read already I think it's the ignition switch but I'm a bit confused about the relationship with some of the symptoms like the dashboard reset. Battery is fine though.



Thank you for your help in advance.


ps. I should mention that I used a DTC scanner and got zero codes.

inafogg
03-15-2011, 08:01 PM
just curious,have you ever tried starting with the turn signal on??

richtazz
03-16-2011, 04:32 PM
your issue is with the ignition switch harness, another common problem on these cars. The contacts where the igniton switch hooks to the vehicle harness get weak with age and start to arc. When you change the electrical load (ie turn on the blinkers), it robs power from another circuit, and this is why the car stalls and the DIC resets.

mj585
03-17-2011, 11:33 PM
Thank you for the replies! That makes sense to me.



@inafogg: I have not done so before no, but I tried tonight and the car wouldn't run. Same problem as the last bullet in my list of symptoms on the first post. Playing around with the turn switch (up, down, away, towards, twist.. you name it) nothing helped. After a bit of kicking, and I think I pulled the ignition cylinder towards me while turning the key, the car started.

However, I can't say for sure it was because of the turn signal that the car didn't start because the two times it has happened in the (very recent) past the turn signal was Off. I'll try later few more times maybe the car will be in a different mood.



Thank you again

BNaylor
03-18-2011, 01:35 AM
I agree with Rich. Bad ignition switch. I just replaced one recently with the exact symptoms. Also, made this DIY tech procedure to replace it. Got the switch through Rich at a very reasonable cost. See link below.

Click here (http://www.automotiveforums.com/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=1054152)



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mn_1
04-30-2011, 09:42 PM
I agree with Rich. Bad ignition switch. I just replaced one recently with the exact symptoms. Also, made this DIY tech procedure to replace it. Got the switch through Rich at a very reasonable cost. See link below.

Click here (http://www.automotiveforums.com/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=1054152)It was the ignition switch on mine..............

irbf
05-15-2011, 01:27 PM
Mine as well. It caused some bizarre electrical problems. I think the bill was around $300 plus a tow. 2000 Regal GS

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