: weird issues....



b1gwi11
03-18-07, 01:50 AM
hey all.. im new to this forum... hopefully someone here can help me solve my problem....

i have a cadillac brougham 1987, which i bought used

it ran fine for a little while, then all of a sudden, it wouldnt start, so we left it where it was at and came back for it the next day with jumper cables, etc... only to find that it started rite up with no problem....

well ran fine for a couple days.... then as we were driving home one night, all the interior lights went out, and we lost power steering, running lights, wipers, etc..... so we managed to coax it back home and after we turned it off, it wouldnt start again.... unlike the first time, letting it sit did nothing....

so recently, we bought a new battery for it, hoping that would solve the problem.... well the battery worked.... for a day

on the way home lost power steering, running lights, turn signals, wipers... ended up pushing it into a parking space....

so... sorry for the long post, but can any1 help me figure out what may be wrong with it??

bigl83
03-18-07, 02:23 AM
sounds like your alternator is shot. get it tested.

b1gwi11
03-18-07, 11:42 PM
ok... bought a refurbished alternator.... now i just need some instruction on how to replace it.....

what bolts need removed and wat needs to come out, etc.... thanx in advance

The Ape Man
03-19-07, 11:24 AM
You need a factory service manual. Also make sure that you have the battery charged before breaking in the refurbished alternator. Many an alternator can be ruined by charging a stone dead modern battery. Since you have to remove the negative battery terminal for this job, remove the positive also and check mating surfaces carefully for crap buildup. Any corrosion can be scraped off. Re-install battery terminals with a gob of dielectric grease applied. Most chassis lube works fine for this. Stuff cannot oxidize without oxygen and the grease keeps it that way.

b1gwi11
03-20-07, 09:50 PM
thanx..... i got a manual and installed the alternator, with a brand new battery, completely charged......

but now it wont start

it beeps, when i put the key in, so i pump the gas and try to start it, but i get nothing, and after that it doesnt even beep anymore

i am 95% sure i wired it back correctly, but does anyone have a wiring diagram? i couldnt find one in the service manual

Brother_B
03-20-07, 11:02 PM
Well, you are moving quickly on this! It takes me forever to make the progress you have made. But you must not have got a _factory_ service manual, or else you would have a wiring diagram. Look on ebay for the factory service manual.

http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/1987-Cadillac-Deville-Fleetwood-Factory-Shop-Manual_W0QQcmdZViewItemQQcategoryZ34212QQhashZitem 220092736519QQitemZ220092736519QQrdZ1

http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/1987-87-CADILLAC-DEVILLE-FLEETWOOD-SERVICE-SHOP-MANUAL_W0QQcmdZViewItemQQcategoryZ34212QQhashZitem 300091869853QQitemZ300091869853QQrdZ1

The second link is from the same ebay company (Bishko) that I got my FSM from, and I am very happy with the product. It's a little pricey, a FSM is just leaps and bounds better than Haynes or Chilton. There is simply no comparison.

One thing you might check is your ground wires. Clean the surfaces where the ground wires bolt up with a wire brush (battery and alternator ground wires). Get everything super clean and make sure all the connections are tight. Take your time and trace each wire and make sure all of them have solid connections.

buffalo
03-20-07, 11:25 PM
Hooking up an alternator wrong, which seems to me pretty hard to do, wouldn't keep the car from starting. Did you have the original alternator tested? or did you just replace it. And when you say it beeps but then you get nothing, what does that mean, no turning over of the motor from the starter? etc.. In my 72 I had a really cool problem with my starter that liked to kill batteries left and right and would drain any newly charged one quickly to the point of starting sometimes and not starting the rest.

Did it start sluggishly before this problem? The starter should make healthy turns of the motor. I just wanna know some more details cause I have had many electrical issues before dealing from charging system to actual short track down. Which random shorts really just don't pop out of nowhere, usually you can track it down to charging system, switches, relays, and the dreaded wiper motors.

b1gwi11
03-21-07, 07:01 AM
brother_b, ur right i didnt get a factory service manual, my misunderstanding... i just got a haynes manual.....

to buffalo, i mean it did literally NOTHING when i turned the key forward.... before it did start kind of sluggishly.... had to hold the key forward awhile....

also, i went and had my battery tested yesterday afternoon, just to make sure it was fully charged.... come home, put it in, and same thing.... beep, then nothing.....

i also tried jumping it to see if it would get it to turn over.... again nothing, although this time it also didnt beep when i put the key in....

this is really frustrating me lol.... starting to question whether its really worth it

buffalo
03-21-07, 08:13 PM
yeah I would check out that starter, your local auto store should be able to test em as well, and worse case they are cheap.

With my bad starter it sometimes made it seem like the battery was dead, so I would charge it and still nothing, put it in gear then back in park to start it again and it would start fine. Funny things a starter can do.

Gwokable
03-22-07, 02:32 AM
1: Charge the battery fully.

2: Pull the battery leads out. Negative first, then positive. Buy a terminal scrubber, use baking soda to dissolve any latent battery acids then wash it off. Take the opportunity to check your battery acid levels. Clean the battery leads.

3: Find the alternator, disconnect any connectors on it.

4: Find the adjustment screw; it's long. Adjust it all the way down so the v-belt may be slid off of it. Inspect the v-belt, you're lucky, if it's bad it's on the outside rung of the water pump pulley and can be slipped over the fan. May be a good idea to replace it while you're replacing the alternator. You may also want to mark where the alternator is on the adjustment bolt with a white marker or chalk so you know where to tighten it to later on.

5: Find the pivot bolt, remove it. Slide the alternator off.

6: Check the condition of the pulley and wiring harness. If either look degraded significantly, replace them. If the new alternator does not have a pulley, you will need to purchase a pulley puller and a installation tool and transfer the pulley over. Pull the bolts off of the new alternator, install them onto the new alternator.

7: Install the new alternator into the car, tighten down the pivot bolt.

8: Install the adjustment bolt, put the v-belt over the alternator, then adjust to the proper tension. The belt should deflect 1/4th an inch in either direction. If she squeals, it's too lose. If it's too tight you'll know because the bearings will go on you in short order.

9: Hook up your wires.

9: Connect the battery.

Start er' up.

b1gwi11
03-22-07, 06:57 PM
thanks for the help every1....

newest update....


so i tried the shift to drive, then back to park and start it thing....

well.... it wouldnt shift out of park, and still wont start.......

now i have NO clue wats wrong with it...

buffalo
03-22-07, 08:56 PM
You might have to have the key in the power position to get it out of gear.. thats the way it is with mine.

b1gwi11
03-24-07, 07:33 PM
You might have to have the key in the power position to get it out of gear.. thats the way it is with mine.

lol.... thanx it shifted now at least.... but still no power at all, and no attempt to start.....

i really need to get a voltmeter type thing so i can check to see if its a power thing.....

also does any1 know if the car has to run to get the starter tested??

im assuming no, but......

425 Dual Quad
03-24-07, 08:05 PM
Hi! if you are getting a sudden deadness of all electrics it is more than likely your battery connections that are dirty.

Clean the batttery posts with emery paper and clean the insides of each connector. really thoroughly. If you can't clean effectively indisde the connector scrape it with a small screwdriver until you get clean metal - but don't take too much off, you don't want a loose terminal. Then tighten them up well. Use decent quality bolts.

Then check the ground cables on the engine and frame.

Happened to me once at a toll booth!

regards
Nick

b1gwi11
03-26-07, 07:10 PM
thank you all again for all your help

i got it to run now

i checked the fuses, none were blown...

then i moved on to the battery terminals

they were kind of loose, so i just cleaned em, and tightened them, and that appears to have fixed it

thanx every1 again who helped me

b1gwi11
03-26-07, 09:56 PM
sorry for the double post but.... the alternator apparently isnt working........

on the way home from drivin around... the no charge light came on... had to jump it to start it....

went to advance for the alternator testing, but... they said their machine was broken

so im drivin home, no turn signals, headlights, running lights, nothing.

so made it home, but... yea....

any ideas on what could be wrong with the alternator?

buffalo
03-27-07, 12:16 AM
well if the alternator is new, its just those terminal connections... clean them well with a wire brush, both the terminal head and the wires that are bolted into the terminal head unless otherwise a one piece.

Brother_B
03-27-07, 12:49 AM
And make sure that you got correct tension on the belt. Your Haynes manual should tell you how to check the belt tension.

b1gwi11
03-28-07, 05:44 PM
thanks once again...

belt tension is correct

i have another squealing belt now however, guess i should probably replace that...

and on to the next problem.....

it starts, alternators working, however

sumtimes it wont start, but the battery is full.....

it tried to turn over a few times

then eventually it just gives up

i would get the starter / alternator / battery test done at advance, but...

ironically theyre machines broken

so any other potential ideas?

Brother_B
03-28-07, 10:11 PM
Well, you probably can't use your Haynes manual to verify that your wires are all hooked back up correctly. I think the removal/installation instructions probably just say "disconnect wires, reconnect wires", right? And there is no wiring diagram. If you get the Factory Shop Manual on e-bay, you will have better instructions and a wiring diagram that you can puzzle out to verify that it is hooked up correctly.

Other than that, you followed buffalo's advice, right?

Other than THAT, I would actually _replace_ any of the wires that you can. And once again, make sure all connections are tight and that you have a very good ground. I have starting problems myself. Last time I tried to start mine, the ground wire running from my alternator to my battery started smoking and the insulation melted. And that was after I spent some time cleaning everything up and replacing all wires that I could. (So maybe my advice is not worth much, eh?!) Anyway, I am just saying it is easy to overlook something, but it seems that you either have more cleaning to do, or have something wired up wrong.

b1gwi11
03-31-07, 04:03 PM
well.... heres the latest....

battery terminals are clean

advance says the alternators doin its job supposedly ( went to another location to get it tested )

however..... the battery still wont stay charged, so.... im just about clueless

Motorboat
04-01-07, 10:31 AM
Turn off ALL the accessories on the car. Disconnect the positive terminal on the battery and with a multimeter, determine how much draw there is. There really should not be any but if it is major, something is not shutting down.

z06bigbird
04-01-07, 12:58 PM
hey all.. im new to this forum... hopefully someone here can help me solve my problem....

i have a cadillac brougham 1987, which i bought used

it ran fine for a little while, then all of a sudden, it wouldnt start, so we left it where it was at and came back for it the next day with jumper cables, etc... only to find that it started rite up with no problem....

well ran fine for a couple days.... then as we were driving home one night, all the interior lights went out, and we lost power steering, running lights, wipers, etc..... so we managed to coax it back home and after we turned it off, it wouldnt start again.... unlike the first time, letting it sit did nothing....

so recently, we bought a new battery for it, hoping that would solve the problem.... well the battery worked.... for a day

on the way home lost power steering, running lights, turn signals, wipers... ended up pushing it into a parking space....

so... sorry for the long post, but can any1 help me figure out what may be wrong with it??


You are losing power steering and power brakes because engine has quit. Sounds like a ground wire. Until you start locating various ground wires, you could run a 10 gauge wire from neg post to frame on car, and then to body.

Ed

z06bigbird
04-01-07, 01:03 PM
well if the alternator is new, its just those terminal connections... clean them well with a wire brush, both the terminal head and the wires that are bolted into the terminal head unless otherwise a one piece.

New alternators and starters purchased at high vol discount stores like Autozone, Advance, Oreilly, etc are, in my opinion, junk. Many failures right out of box.

Alternative, get it rebuilt locally. Most towns and cities have a handful of people who rebuild those parts, and generally do a good job because that is their living. They want repeat business.

Ed

DaveSmed
04-07-07, 03:33 AM
A voltmeter would certainly be handy, but for some other things to check: main connections down at the starter. The big battery cable (sometimes they corrode, terminals get bent and start to break, etc.) and the fusible links. (though your car may use a bright red junction box somewhere for the majority of them) Check them all out. Many mechanics have a habit of stabbing thier test light through the insulation of a wire to check for power, which can come back to be a problem in cars as old as these as corrosion starts.

If you can get your hands on a voltmeter, there's a lot more tests that can be done. In the mean time, turn the headlights on and crank the car. Do they almost go off? Do they dim a little bit? Do they stay fully bright?

b1gwi11
05-12-07, 04:45 PM
ok.... after a looonngggg time

new updates

i got a voltmeter so i can test things..... unless im doing something wrong (probably am) everything looks fine

also, when i turn the key to start it, 1 of 3 things happen

1. it starts just like its supposed to
2. it clicks, and doesnt try to turn over or anything
3. nothing

as always any help is appreciated

Old Fleetwood
05-12-07, 05:00 PM
Might you have nothing more than a crappy IGNITION SWITCH?
The symptoms are exactly what I had on my Dodge B250 van/wagon.
>When the NO Start condition happens, can you get it to start by JIGGLING the key in both the ON and START positions?
>Is there any looseness in the entire ignition lock?
>Has the car ever been stolen so that the Ignition lock might have been replaced improperly after being yanked out, jimmied or screwdrivered?

b1gwi11
05-12-07, 05:12 PM
nope... its something more than an ignition switch.... although mine is kind of loose... im pretty sure its not the problem

Motorboat
05-12-07, 07:36 PM
Try moving the gearshift while the key is in the start position. Often the neutral safety switch either goes bad or needs adjustment.

b1gwi11
05-26-07, 07:26 PM
thanks again for all your help guys...

i finally broke down and took it to a garage.....

heres what they said:

the alternator was installed properly, worked great, belt was approptiately tight, however

the belt goes from alternator to the fan, not the crank

the one going from the fan - crank - somethin else was slipping, hence it wasnt charging properly

also, the reason it was having major difficulty starting, was apparently attributed to a dirty air filter...... (completely forgot to check that one..... *duh*)

CDV478
05-27-07, 02:33 AM
Was the garage able to get it going for you? I have had several Cadillacs exhibit the same symptoms, and cleaning the terminals, double checking your work, and everything else that others have suggested are good things to check. While I have had alternators go bad, they exhibit different symptoms than you are experiencing; things go out progressively, not instantly. It sounds like the negative or positive terminals have corrosion inside the insulation, causing your car to behave very much as if the terminal connections were dirty. Replace the battery terminals. I have done this on 3 cars and it resolved the problem on each... I hope it helps you.

Aaron

b1gwi11
05-28-07, 12:24 AM
Was the garage able to get it going for you? I have had several Cadillacs exhibit the same symptoms, and cleaning the terminals, double checking your work, and everything else that others have suggested are good things to check. While I have had alternators go bad, they exhibit different symptoms than you are experiencing; things go out progressively, not instantly. It sounds like the negative or positive terminals have corrosion inside the insulation, causing your car to behave very much as if the terminal connections were dirty. Replace the battery terminals. I have done this on 3 cars and it resolved the problem on each... I hope it helps you.

Aaron

oh yea definitely, they changed all the belts, charged the battery... been workin ever since

and my batter terminals.... cleaned the s*** outta them..... all nice and shiny, so no problem there... that was one of the first things suggested to me lol

z06bigbird
05-30-07, 12:50 AM
Look at it this way: You are now or will soon be an expert on starting problems. I recall similar problems with a 64 SDV when I was your age. Life is fun.

Looks like you are getting some good advice here. Hang in there, man.