No start condition


New member
1999 Sunfire 2.2L. Sister's car was driven to a location and 2 hours later no start, no crank, no clicking, nothing. Tried to jump and nothing. The only history of issues I've seen with the car is that it would crank for several seconds before eventually starting.

I had the car towed back to my place and cleaned the battery terminals, nothing. I didn't get a chance to measure the battery but the headlights were bright and all the dash lights and radio worked. And the fact that it wouldn't jump I "thought" I could rule out the battery, CMIIW.

When turning the key, I do not get 12V to the starter relay (and therefore nothing to the starter solenoid). I pulled the relay anyway and it tested good. I tested the yellow wire on the ignition switch and I get 12V when I turn the key. I decided it was probably the neutral safety switch and didn't think I could get to it so I sent it off to the shop.

Well, now it's at the shop and they tell me the THEFT light is on and they cant do any other troubleshooting. They asked if I have another key to rule that out not realizing this kind of security doesn't have a resistor in the key. I had no idea this car had such a feature but now that they said it I do remember seeing that light on the dash. No idea if it was there from the beginning though. I had also half installed a new ignition switch by pulling the harnesses so that may have tripped the security too. They were able to start the car by supplying voltage directly to the starter, I can find out if it died right away.

My questions (finally):
1. If the car stays running when they jump the starter, can we rule out a passlock issue?
2. Any idea where I go from here? Does anything jump out as something I missed?


Staff member
If the car is at a qualified shop why are you still pursing a solution?
This shop doesnt know how Passlock works?
Did anybody try a relearn procedure since you have changed the ignition switch?


New member
I'm just not feeling like the shop has made any progress, and then they call and want me to approve more diagnostic charges. They said they tried the relearn procedure but I don't see a mechanic sitting in the car for 30 minutes to do it 3 times which I've read it takes on some cars.
My main problem is that I unfortunately sent it to the shop before even learning about the stupid passlock thing or I would have at least tried to fix that before sending it to them (if that didn't solve the whole problem to begin with).

Thinking if I can figure something out maybe I can help them with some info.

The place came highly recommended, but I'm used to doing things myself, just didn't have the time.


New member
They act like they know the relearn procedure, but it didn't sound like they did it yet, I mentioned it again yesterday and the guy said he was going to do it last night or this morning so we'll see.

Couple quick passlock questions:
1. Will a passlock failure cause a no crank, no click non-starting condition? Because it sounds to me like the car should turn over if this was the only failure.
2. Will a car continue to run if you jump it at the starter with a THEFT light on? Will it start over and over?

Thanks again.