Is it my Sunfire's computer?

Asked by Oct 23, 2012 at 02:24 PM about the 2004 Pontiac Sunfire

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

A family member of mine decided to do me a favor and wash all the bugs off the engine of my 2004
Pontiac Sunfire and now I have a problem. I was on my way to work a couple days after the wash and
I had my stereo on lisening to a CD, however 20 to 30 minutes into my drive I notice a strange sound
from my speakers kinda like feedback from an amp. I turned the music up thinking I blew another set
of speakers, but the sound got louder and when I tried to turn off the stereo it continued even after
the stereo was off. I went and bought another stereo thinking that the factory set was toast, installed
the new one and tried again...at first it didn't make the sound but when I turned the music up to a
certain point it happened again! I turned the car off and it continued! My car does have a cut off
feature that once the drivers door is opened the stereo turns off automatically, so the sound did stop
when I opened my drivers door...but what is the issue? A friend told me that my family member who
washed the engine may have accidentally washed the computer that sits against the firewall on the
passengers side above the fender and now there is a contact that's either corroded or bad...I have
also been told that the computer is fried and something is a miss...Please help me, I don't know what
to do? The car runs Perfectly except for the occasional time when it rains the speedometer gauge will
shoot up to 220kph on the dial and stay there no matter what speed I am actually going, and you
have to turn the car on and off several times to reset the silly thing. Does it matter that I have a
Manual transmission?

Thanks in advance for any help.
Cheers,
Lee

1 Answer

I would have to disagree with the claims that the ECM is bad. If the computer is fried, most likely you would have driveability concerns related to the engine. The radio is powered from the junction box underneath the kick panel on the driver's side. some are even controlled through the body control module as well. I would say that washing the engine didnt cause the abnormal noise you hear from the radio, but what i do suggest is checking your grounds in the engine bay to make sure they are properly seated. loosen them up clean them with a solution like brake cleaner. scrape them with a wire brush and tighten them up.

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