2001 Chevy Cavalier, It will start but wont stay running.


Asked by Jan 29, 2014 at 08:54 AM about the 2001 Chevrolet Cavalier Base

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

Only since it has gotten so cold here in NH has it been having a hard time to even start and now when I start it, it will shut off. Its only done this twice. The first time I was able to start it up again. It was a rough start though. This last time I couldn't get it to re-start at all. It wants to turn over but just wont. Its always been a hard idling car. In the morning when I start it to let it warm up it sounds terrible. spitting and sputtering, eventually going away. Im just not sure what it could be. I changed the fuel pump about 5 months ago. Theres 1/4 of gas in the tank currently.
Any thoughts people!?
Thank you!

4 Answers


If you feather the gas pedal will it seem to run ok? If so it's probably the idle air control valve either dirty or faulty. Could also be the throttle position sensor.


Symptoms of an Idle air control valve not operating properly are loping idle(high then low), high idle, low idle or going dead at idle. If yours is doing any of these things and you can give it some gas and it will seem to run ok then I would check into either cleaning or replacing the idle air control valve.


the first time this happened thats exactly what I had to do to get it started. I gave it some gas and it started. This last time that trick didn't work. it wanted to turn over but just wouldn't. Thanks for tips!!


Mine turned out to be the fuel pressure regulator. (Left front/top of the engine, end of the fuel rail, vacuum line on top). To test, remove the vacuum line, turn the ignition to run (should hear the fuel pump priming). If fuel comes out of the top hole of the regulator, it is bad and needs replaced. Changed mine in 30 min, runs like a champ. $85 part from any auto parts store. Procedure: 1) Relieve fuel pressure - Under the rear of car/passenger side unplug the white electrical pug to the fuel pump. Start the car, if possible, and let it run itself out of fuel pressure. Plug (fuel pump) white electrical plug back in. 2) Remove the negative battery terminal. 3) Remove the Air Intake manifold. Two screws on top, three hose connections (Two have hose clamps, the third is underneath). 4) Remove the (sideways) bolt holding the fuel pressure regulator. 5) Using a large flat screwdriver, I was able to swing the bottom of the retaining bracket out of the way without having to unscrew it. 5) Remove the fuel line retaining bolt from the front side of the engine block. This should let the fuel line that enters the bottom of the pressure regulator move just enough to wiggle it out of the fuel rail. 6) Apply clean engine oil to new O-Rings when reinstalling. Hope this helps someone. 2001 Cavalier Z24 2.4L DOHC 126k miles No computer codes Hard starting, ran fine once started. sometimes took 4 or 5 tries to get it started. Problem was worse after car was warmed up.

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