Wont start when cold outside

Asked by Sep 02, 2009 at 09:29 PM about the 2003 Pontiac Grand Am

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

I have a 2003 Grand Am with the 2.2 L. When it is cold outside the car will not start. After warming up in the sun the car starts right up and runs fine. Any idea what would be causing this

14 Answers


does it start and then stall? you could go to a local auto parts store and have them test the battery for free takes about 10 minutes

2 people found this helpful.

not the battery im sure of that and the battery ls less than a year old


ok sounds like something wrong with the computer system when your car first starts up the engine enters a closed loop system it guesses how much fuel to give the engine until the sensors warmup and it gives out the exact amount but i have no clue on the problem

2 people found this helpful.

2 cans of gas line anti freeze may have water in system

1 people found this helpful.

I have the same problem with same year grand am. We replaced the com and it still will not start when its cold out. Any ideas?

3 people found this helpful.

I have a 2003 Grand Am - 2.2 L and when it gets to negative double digits, it won't start. The first time, I had it towed to a garage. The mechanic said once it warmed up, it started fine. Today is the third time this has happened. I know it's not the batter because I bought a new one, just in case. A retired mechanic told me he believes a sensor could be going bad and when it's extremely cold, just won't start and told me about this closed loop thing. I believe he suggested having the crank or cam sensor checked, but I can just see it now - a female enters a shop and says she thinks the crank or cam sensor is bad, they won't listen to me. Guys at work still tell me it's the battery.

Thw only thing the batter does is run the starter. If its cranking good when you turn the key its not the starter.. Once its running the battery just gets charged by the alternator. 3 things to check with any car issue... Ignition... Compression and fuel.. Ive had the same problem use to have to start my car every day or it would not turn on.. It would crank.. Jumped it once for over 20 minutes trying... Did a tuneup in the summer .. New sparkplugs and wires also a fuel filter.. Have not had the issue yet.. Turn the key to on for a few seconds and let the fuel pump run some before you engage the starter.. Helps but wont fix it.. Also some weird reason a fresh oil change helped me with this issue somewhat i noticed with fresh oil it started better somehow so maybe it could be a bad crank sensor or a sensor going out... Also could be the computer you can unplug it from under by the feet compartment passenger side bring it in warm it up and see if that helps.. All trial amd error but of your cars still healthy ide do a tuneup with new plugs amd wires.. Maybe a fuel filter if you havnt done one and help the pump and ignition work better... Also try some fuel enjector cleaner to clean her out some and maybe even higher octane fuel idk if its just the cold weather.. Might also be an issue with the winter blend fuel they use.. But it sounds to me like spark problems when my car wouldnt start for after i killed the battery and had to jump it for 20+ minutes when i cranked it it smelled like unburnt fuel from the exhaust and it would also backfire and missfire.. So most signs are telling me crank shaft position sensor as well!..

If its cranking good its not the BATTERY****** i ment but yes also obviously not the starter.. Sorry didny proof read.. Start with the cheapest repairs first.. And a new sensor isnt going to hurt neither is new plugs wires and a fuel filter should be changed every so often anywho


I have the same car and have the EXACT problem. As we live in AS if the car sits in the sun it will start with absolutely no problem . If it is cold outside and when I say cold in AZ I mean like 60 degrees it won't start. Someone please please help. Iv read about the same thing with these cars over And over where people replace the comput6 the fuel filter the fuel pump the crank sensor and still no go. Who has got this figured out?????

1 people found this helpful.

fuse 34 under the hood "!!!" it was wrong withr 2004 grand am. last year... it takes a 10# but id put a 15-20 in ...it


I have a 2003 with the same issue regarding outside temp. 40 degree day in my garage and it won't start. I put a heater inside the car, let it warm up and it fired up first crank. So the rest of the car was still exposed to the 40. It has to be something inside the car causing this issue. Not sure where to go from here.

1 people found this helpful.

neutral safety sw some times gets stuck/ battery terminals / / buy a plug in unit to keep vehicle engine warm /you should have atleast 990-1000 cranking amp battery interstate preferred

1 people found this helpful.

Not a bad idea but the battery is good and the car is turning over when It's not starting. I cranked it at least a dozen times. When i heated the inside of the car, it immediately started with no hesitation and started repeatedly after warmed up. My mechanic was very baffled and also noticed it would only start on warm days.

I heard the computer under the dash in my 03 grand am behind the glove box has dirty connection unplug it and clean it than try it. Haven't had the time yet.

Your Answer:

Grand Am

Looking for a Used Grand Am in your area?

CarGurus has 719 nationwide Grand Am listings starting at $1,900.


Pontiac Grand Am Experts

  • #1
  • #2
    Tom Demyan
  • #3
    John Saffrahn
View All

Related Models For Sale

Used Pontiac Grand Prix
14 Great Deals out of 1,756 listings starting at $800
Used Pontiac Firebird
6 Great Deals out of 682 listings starting at $4,700
Used Ford Mustang
266 Great Deals out of 37,717 listings starting at $1,350
Used Chevrolet Camaro
237 Great Deals out of 27,287 listings starting at $2,077
Used Chevrolet Malibu
489 Great Deals out of 51,426 listings starting at $1,995
Used Pontiac GTO
4 Great Deals out of 387 listings starting at $7,900
Used Chevrolet Impala
375 Great Deals out of 25,636 listings starting at $950
Used Nissan Altima
741 Great Deals out of 66,558 listings starting at $1,499
Used Pontiac Bonneville
324 listings starting at $1,900
Used Jeep Grand Cherokee
874 Great Deals out of 76,615 listings starting at $900
Used Toyota Camry
761 Great Deals out of 72,912 listings starting at $1,000

Used Cars For Sale

2004 Pontiac Grand Am For Sale
173 listings starting at $1,900

Content submitted by Users is not endorsed by CarGurus, does not express the opinions of CarGurus, and should not be considered reviewed, screened, or approved by CarGurus. Please refer to CarGurus Terms of Use.