Beretta, Corsica, & pre-1995 Lumina Among this grouping, these three cars, while being similar to each other, offered something for everyone, from a sports coupe to a roomy sedan.
Platform: L-Body

1988 Corsica turns but Won't Start, Idles bad in rain

Old May 13th, 2013, 6:06 PM
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Default 1988 Corsica turns but Won't Start, Idles bad in rain

Hey Guys,

I've been having trouble with my Corsica for a while now, not sure if these problems are related to eachother, but I will describe all of the symptoms I've been having.

First, I tried to start the car one morning, it would turn over but would not start. I got it towed to the garage, and the tow truck driver tried to start it out of curiosity after towing it. It immediately started up after the tow, but there was a definite strong smell coming from the exhaust after that start, like it had been flooded. It worked completely fine for two weeks after that, but now it is once again only turning over and will not start.

Second, the car (when it is starting okay) runs really badly in the rain. The car's idle will fluctuate up and down, and it will be very jerky when accelerating. I must be gentle with the gas pedal in order not to stall it. After the weather clears up, it usually runs great. The check engine light will sometimes come on but always goes out before I can get it to a garage to scan it.

Third, this may not be related to either problem, but a couple of days ago i noticed a strong exhaust odor while driving. After parking the car for a while then driving home, the car had a single HUGE backfire (i could see a flash in the rearview mirror) when driving along. It maybe could have been a power transformer or something exploding behind me but I'm pretty sure it was the car.

Any thoughts? Perhaps the car is getting too much fuel sometimes which explains the poor running/occasional failure to start/backfire? Any help appreciated.
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Old June 15th, 2013, 11:32 AM
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Easy way to look for to much fuel is to remove the spark plug and see if it is wet.
Also it will probably smell like gasoline.

I'm thinking something might be wrong with your injectors, but it is hard to tell.

Under the dash in the passenger foot well, the ECM (engine control module) is there Just-in-case, I would check and make sure water is not leaking into the vehicle and into that computer. That can cause issues if that is the case.

But yes, pluged or failing injectors can cause to much or to little gas.

Also, failing coils can cause missfire, which can lead to unburned fuel and flooding of the cylinders.

If you have a junk yard near by, you might want to try swapping out the ignition coils with another set to see what happens.
If its the same, then I'd saw them back as there was no change, then check the injectors after.

Checking the injectors is a bit bigger job than changing the coils. and they cost more money too.

Also check for any breaks or leak in the ignition wires, maybe the spark plugs are old?

I'm interested to see what you find, as I never encountered this specific type of problem before with all the engines like this that I own.
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Old June 16th, 2013, 7:00 PM
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I think I've got the problem figured out. A few days after all of this, the car completely stopped working (would turn over but no spark) the problem was the Ignition Module (the small part that the coils plug into).

After replacing that, the car starts every time and seems to be fine in the rain, although I have only driven it on a couple of rainy days so far.
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