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Old 06-04-2017, 06:12 PM   #1
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2003 Chevy Malibu

Hi guys. New member here. So as of Friday my malibu lost power while driving. I couldn't tell you if any dash lights had come on because I was trying to get over to the shoulder without getting hit. Car will not turnover at all. At first it made a rapid clicking and I know I killed the battery trying to crank and figure out what was going on. Had a 24hr roadside service come out and the guy tried to jump my car off and no luck. He told me it was the fuel pump. Another guy who works at an auto shop near where I live told me it could possibly be the alternator. So I went and pulled an alternator off of another Chevy model(I double checked to make sure it was universal for my vehicle). And still had not luck getting it turned over even after having it hooked up to another car. Bought starting fluid and it cranked then shut right back off. Any idea what the problem could be? I'm no car expert and I apologize if I wasn't as detailed. Car has been a nightmare since getting it from jdbyrider two years ago. Thanks is advance guys.
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Old 06-04-2017, 10:14 PM   #2
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Re: 2003 Chevy Malibu

First, the terminology.

If the engine started/ran briefly with the application of starting fluid, it fired. In order for that to occur, the starter must be able to crank the engine.

Reading between the lines, it would seem that the electrical system had some sort of failure and the battery power was insufficient to crank the engine, thus the rapid clicking of the starter solenoid.

Some time later it was jumped to a vehicle with adequate power, and apparently cranked without starting, otherwise even a wild guess at insufficient fuel pressure would be irrelevant.

Finally, if the engine did start/run for a few seconds after the application of fuel (starter fluid) it would seem the ignition system is intact and fuel delivery is indeed in question. There can be many reasons for this, from an empty tank or clogged fuel filter to a failed fuel pump or security lockout. It will be essential to get a good, fully charged battery installed (or fully charge the existing battery) before diagnosis can commence.
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