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Debbie Harris's 1969 Grand Prix

2022 September
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'99 Bonneville died 10 sec. after starting, now won't start.

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This morning I started my car, (started fine) pulled out of the driveway, got about 10 feet into the street and the engine completely died.

Headlights and radio work, but, no dash lights and it doesn't do anything when the key is turned.

About 3 weeks ago I tried to start it and it wouldn't start, no dash lights, but, headlights and radio worked.

After checking the internet and finding out it could be corrosion on the battery cables my husband cleaned the cables and it ran fine up until today.

He checked the battery cables today and doesn't think that's the problem this time (mainly because it died while it was running).

A couple of months ago he had to bypass the VATS, the car has barely over 60,000 miles on it. I've just about had it with this thing.

Any ideas on what could be wrong with it NOW....?

Thank you.

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Does it start with a jump?

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For this time I would check all your fuses. Mains in the engine bay, panel by the driver's foot well, and panel by the front passenger's foot well.

Check the battery ground wire that's bolted to the unibody next to the battery.

Also check your ground buses for excessive corrosion. There's 2 that can cause all sorts of electrical issues. One on each side of the car, where the carpet meets the front of the front door sill. They'll be wrapped up in electrical tape.

Location on the driver's side:




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I support 95nasTA's recommendations.

Another thing - has your husband checked or taken the battery to your local auto parts store and have it load tested? it is possible that the battery has a bad cell in it. If it is starting to fail, it can still run the low voltage things like the headlights and radio, but high voltage / high current draw like the starter, it then fails. It may also fail to re-charge completely.

Any idea how old the battery is? If it is approaching 4 or more years old, it may be failing or starting to fail.

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If you had a lot of corrosion on the battery terminals, that's almost always caused by a leaky post seal. As the battery charges and discharges, it off-gases and those gases are what cause the corrosion. A junked battery can pull the voltage down enough that it won't start from a booster while the dud is connected.

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Thank you for the responses, he checked most of the fuses (just has to check the passenger side still).

He'll check the the ground buses.

He said there wasn't a lot of corrosion on the battery cables, but, the website where we found that information said it didn't take much corrosion to prevent the car from starting.

We know it's not the battery because we took it out and used it for another car, and there was no problem with that.

Thank you, again for the suggestions.

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Fuses are all OK, and there was no corrosion on the ground buses .....

Power seats, headlights, interior lights all work, but, nothing on the dash is working - no warning lights, no dash lights, no radio, heating or air conditioning...

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I know you said fuses are all ok but that grouping sounds like one of the main fuses in the engine bay popped. Theres 2 groups of large fuses on either side of where the positive side of the battery connects at the top of the engine bay.

It might be different on your 99 but on my 95 on the group closer to the driver's side, it's the 60A fuse 3 positions from the connection to the battery.



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Thank you 95naSTA, he checked those fuses (and swapped them out to be sure).

It cranks with a remote starter, but won't turn over.

Is there any chance of a fusible link between the battery and the ignition that he is not aware of (he asks).

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All fuses in the engine compartment test good.

The passenger side fuse box has no power to:

misc. engine controls (OBD II)

fuel pump


power control module

Driver's side fuse box has no power to:

fuse 1A passkey

1D ignition (run/crank)

7E misc. engine controls (non OBD II)

5A automatic air conditioning control

All other fuses work.

It seems I'm missing something between the engine compartment fuse boxes and the interior fuse boxes.

Triple checked ground wires from battery to body - 1 larger and 3 smaller - all connected, no corrosion.

Headlights work and if left on when opening door chime from dashboard sounds.

Radio and air conditioning don't work.

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  • Founders

This is why I love my old cars. Maybe 100' of wire in the entire vehicle.

There's probably 100' of wire in the trunk of the Camaro

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