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Q: What could be the cause of my car not starting?

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In my attempts to start my car this morning it did not start until 15 minutes into my morning. It is not the battery for sure because everything is on including the radio. When I turn the key it sounds as if it starts, but then the engine "lurches" and does not enter into its cycling. I tried to give it gas, but then there is a noticeable "pop" as if air is leaving a pressured area or valve. It started eventually, but then upon shutting it back down and trying to start it again it would not start.

My car has 115000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

A: Hello there, thank you for asking about you...

Hello there, thank you for asking about your 1999 Pontiac Grand Am. This car’s engine is known to have a problem with engine speed sensors like the crankshaft and camshaft sensors. The fuel pump is also known to have issues with not giving fuel pressure. Before anything can be isolated, the engine fuel pressure should be tested and the computer scanned to see if there are codes that could help diagnose the no start. If you have good fuel pressure and no codes then disconnect the mass airflow sensor and try to start it. I have seen this sensor cause problems and not even set a code. If the vehicle starts and runs halfway decent, then have a certified technician from YourMechanic replace the mass airflow sensor.

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