31st Jul 2003, 06:51

This is a follow-up to my last comment on here.

Since my post, I went to another Pontiac dealership asking for them to repair my stalling problem by any means necessary. I explained to them how it only stalls on long, graded hills, and only after driving about 30-45 min. when the engine gets hot. I also told them how once you get to flat land again, or let the engine cool, it typically starts again.

After hearing this, the technician said they've gotten a bulletin from Pontiac about such a situation, and it suggests a problem with the fuel strainer in the gas tank. He said it apparently is a model-wide problem with those strainers collapsing, causing stalling problems when going uphill and when the engine is hot.

They dropped the fuel tank, and replaced this fuel strainer. He said that my former strainer had indeed collapsed, and would not allow proper fuel to be sent to the engine once the engine heated up and when I got to a hill.

I've been driving it a full week now since the repair without any problems whatsoever. My erratic gas gauge problem also seems to have been rectified with this repair.

The part cost $18.50. I suggest anyone with similar problems attempt to have a dealer go this route before trying anything else, especially if someone recommends replacing the fuel pump. Apparently that wouldn't solve the problem anyway, and you'd be out a stack of cash for nothing.

7th Aug 2003, 11:06

Well, I finally found a bit of information on the exact same problem. Car just stalls with no warning, all dash lights come on, and you have to wait 10 to 15 minutes before the car will start again. Sometimes, it just won't start at all.

Is GMC going to address this problem? This has been happening off and on for over a year, and no mechanic has been able to find the problem. What was the total cost of the repair though the GMC dealer? You said the part cost $18.50, but what did they charge you to drop the tank and repair?


11th Aug 2003, 10:05

Whether GM will make fixing this problem a priority, I don't know. All I know is what I stated in my last post, and that's that the Pontiac dealers SHOULD have been warned about the strainer problem based on the bulletin referenced to me by the service tech. at the dealership that repaired my car.

I still have not had any problem with my car since the fuel strainer was replaced, and I've gone up some wicked hills since then. Right now, I'm confident the problem is gone.

Whether it'll stay gone, I don't know. If there is another condition that's causing the fuel strainers to collapse, then it probably will someday. But if the original factory strainers are the problem, then maybe it's fixed. Or at least that's what I'm hoping.

As for the cost for repairs -- the new in-tank strainer ($18.50) was the easy part. Dropping the tank and other associated labor cost me $111.50 for two hours labor, bringing the total cost to about $130.00. Given that I had to have it fixed, I had no choice, but to ante up and pay it. I'm not sure about an outside mechanic doing it, though. All of the ones I spoke with wanted to put a new fuel pump on it -- NONE suggested the fuel strainer problem.

23rd Nov 2004, 17:01

I have a 2000 Pontiac Sunfire SE. I too, have been having stalling problems. Primarily when the weather changes from Summer to Fall. The colder months and the change in the gasoline definitely effect my car. The car will run and then for no reason stall out and die. Sometimes the car will die if I am just sitting at a light in neutral. Also, at times, it seems to not want to take gas when the gas pedal is pressed. It almost feels like a clog of some sort. Yet no mechanic or the dealership seams to find anything wrong.

Since I have had my Sunfire, I have replaced the head gasket, catalytic converter, alternator, clutch, and I have a wheel bearing going out.

I am so fed up!

Erin of Spokane, WA.

8th Apr 2005, 19:08

I bought a 2000 Pontiac Sunfire SE about a month ago and I was doing research on modifications when I found this site. I purchased my car from a dealer who had acquired it from a car auction. My car was originally a rental / leased car. I was able to get it with low miles (37k) and every mile was accounted for on the car fax report. The report also verified the dealer's statement that it was a leased car. I had one question regarding the car ~ where did everyone else that purchased their car buy it from (if you don't mind telling)? Was it a private owner, a lease (common with Pontiacs), new or used? The prior owner can make a lot of difference in the performance you get and I'd like to compare the results I get. Thanks!

24th Apr 2006, 15:19

I own a 2000 Pontiac Sunfire GT. I have been having problems with the car shaking at idle and stalling on the highways. I drove 4 hours on vacation without any problems, but then the car stalled 5 times on the journey back home. I have been trying to find a solution to this problem for over 2 years now.

2 years ago, I noticed a slight miss every once in a while. Now it shakes whenever it is not accelerating. It stalls on the highway sometimes, after 10 minutes of driving or sometimes longer than 4 hours. I have replaced a fuel sending unit as per the bulletin mentioned earlier.. this didn't fix it. This included the fuel strainer.

I just changed the fuel pump, filter and I have checked the remote control starter in case the wires were causing problems... nope. I am very frustrated. I am now waiting on a new computer for my car because I just found out that they warranty computers for up to 160,000kms. Hey, it is worth a shot.. especially if it is free.

I am thinking the ignition coil, but I really don't know. I hear that may not fix my car either. UGH! I have been to 3 GM dealerships around where I live, and 3 mechanic shops, and still everyone keeps throwing their hands up in the air. I don't want to sell it because I actually like the car. I just hate the major issue I am having. I don't figure anyone can help me, so I am writing just to let you know I too have stalling problems. I just wish I knew why.

27th Sep 2006, 06:14

I have a Pontiac 2000 Sunfire and have been having stalling problems. Had it in to the repair shop all day and it didn't act up at all for them. Went to pick it up, backed out of the parking spot, and, you guessed it - it stalled. The mechanic got in and tried it - it stalled. We don't know what is causing this. The "Service" light comes on. Seems to be idling way too low. It happens almost always when I back out and crank the wheels while backing up, although it did stall once pulling out of my driveway. I have also had to replace a left front wheel sensor, as the "ABS" and "Traction Control" lights were coming on. However, even after the repair, the lights still come on. Had it in to the shop again for this, they put the scope thing on it, and drove around the building (with me inside), all 4 sensors show fine. Anyone have any ideas??