Q: Chevy G20 1990 Van not starting. Transmission issues addressed. thumping noise during idle. Reservoir overflowed, no oil pressure

asked by on March 23, 2017

Recently inherited a van. 1990 Chevy G20 Van. It had issues from sitting, specifically a transmission blockage. After removing the blockage, a thumping noise was extremely audible. Husband assumed it had to do with a cracked head gasket and attempted to use a liquid fix. Letting it idle as the bottle instructed, he began rev-ing it. It began reading no oil pressure and attempted to shut off. He rev-ed it during the attempted shut off and there was a loud thud. The vehicle shut down, and the reservoir tank overflowed. A bit of steam pour from under the hood, not a ton but a bit. he removed the keys and attempted to restart. The light, air, and console lights came on, but the engine will not turn over. Have attempted to start it twice since, with the same results.

My car has 218000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

Car is hard to start Inspection $79.99 - $89.99 Get a Quote

Hi there. Unfortunately, it’s possible that your husband was correct about the cracked head gasket, but using a liquid "stop leak" product most likely made it worse. What likely occurred is whatever substance that was used to resolve the head gasket leak leaked into the oil galleys, solidified and probably blocked the restriction of oil. This would have caused the oil pressure to decrease and possibly created a worse overheating problem. It’s possible and highly likely that the engine seized up. The only way to determine this is to have a professional mobile mechanic come to your location and complete a car is hard to start inspection.

The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Fair and transparent pricing

What others are asking

heater works for about 20 mins then starts to blow cold air

Check for low coolant level and, if low, there is a possibility of air trapped in the system. Check for collapsed (or soft) hoses. Check your engine operating temperature to see if it is in the normal range of 195...

Transmission problem - electrical problem. 2011 silverado 5.3l

Those are pretty serious codes referring to communications failures between control modules as well as potential failure of the PCM itself. Most electrical failures are wiring related (corrosion, bad grounds, wire break, etc.) and diagnosing this will proceed with those...

I have a 1999 chevy Tahoe that only blow air from the defrost vents. How can I get the air to blow in your face of feet?

The control actuator that moves the door to control this may have a wiring connector issue due to connections at control head and actuator wiring was miss routed and it pulls the harness connector wires too taught. You should disconnect...

When power steering pump cap is removed should there be a slight presure release

You should have the power steering reservoir cap checked to make sure the vent on cap is not blocked. Also make sure the system is bled of excessive air in the system. Once these two things are checked then you...

While driving my car will shut off if you start it again it will act like it's flooded for about 10 minutes then will start?

You should get the fuel pressure checked and the computer scanned. If running too rich then your fuel pressure may be too high or you have a leaking injector. A computer test will tell you if you have a sensor...

Fuel pump noise

A loud fuel pump often indicates either excessive cavitation, or mechanical failure is eminent. Either of these issues will lead to fuel starvation and drivability issues. My recommendation is to have a mechanic, such as one from YourMechanic, replace the...

P0446 Check engine code

Hi there. The system will set the message if it attempts a self test and finds atmospheric pressure in the tank. The gas cap may not be the concern here as this message is directly related to a large leak...

How to disable passenger airbag in work van?

It's always advisable to transport small children in the back seat. However, if your van does not have back seats, there should be an airbag off switch located on the passenger side of the dash. The vehicle key must be...

can i charge my car battery with car cables still connected and charger machine on

You should not have a problem as long as you charge at a low rate and do not turn on the key while charger is on. A lot of people use a trickle charger to keep their battery topped off...

Related articles

How to Buy a Classic Chevy
For experienced car collectors and rookies alike, owning a classic Chevy is a rite of passage. There are multiple decades and styles in which Chevrolet made popular cars. Many of these cars then had a devout following in the years...
2012 Chrysler 200 vs. 2012 Chevrolet Malibu: Which One Should I Buy?
When you are looking for a small-range sedan, you need to get somewhere quickly and inexpensively, and may even need to take a few kids with you. Slightly larger than a commuter car, these mid-size options offer decent gas mileage,...
The 5 Safest Used Cars You Can Buy For Under $20,000
The Subaru Legacy, Honda Accord, Ford Fusion, Chevy Volt, and the Volvo XC60 are five of the overall safest used cars you can buy for under $20,000.