View Full Version : car died on highway last night

05-17-2008, 12:45 PM
alright, so i'm doing about 70mph (keeping up with traffic) last night on the highway. first thing i notice is my radio shuts off (never did that before). then a couple seconds later my engine completely cuts out. i coast over to the shoulder and notice smoke coming out of the engine bay. everything gets power, but engine will not crank over. oil level is normal. coolant level is normal. i've got 200,000 miles and it NEVER gave me a problem (only things i've had to change.... clutch and alternator) till now.

any ideas?

05-17-2008, 12:59 PM
what did the smoke smell like? Oil or plastic?

I'm guessing its electrical.

05-17-2008, 01:03 PM
i say alternator....try jump cables to start it....then after a while disconect ...if the car dies after some time it means the alternator is not charging the battery

05-17-2008, 01:27 PM
^alternator was brand new and charging fine. according to the meter anyway.

what did the smoke smell like? Oil or plastic?

I'm guessing its electrical.

couldnt tell. it was too dark and windy. checked the wiring though. everything is fine.

05-17-2008, 02:06 PM
maybe the battery arked to something but it happened to m z cuzz the battery's side post terminals were too close to the engine bay.. just a thought

05-17-2008, 06:29 PM
sounds like your alternator over heated

05-17-2008, 06:35 PM
same thing happened to my gf the other day, but no smoke.

car woulnd't crank anymore. they pushed started it, she drive it acouple miles right before she got home, radio turned off, then engine turned off, she got her battery replaced and everything was fine, i thought it was her alternator, but they got a new battery, left it running for about 30 minutes and everything seem fine, they took it to a shop to let them check the alternator and it seem to be fine as well, the car is running fine now i guess? it made it 200 miles from SD to here just today.

gl with your problem, try swaping out batterys with a buddy of yours :)

05-17-2008, 08:52 PM
Check your battery terminals. My car did the same thing. Terminal was loose.

05-17-2008, 10:05 PM
and your alternator fuse check that too.

05-17-2008, 10:11 PM
i dont think you sufficiently tested the life of your alternator. bring it to a shop and they can tell you in a split (and even rebuild it often). Osal's advice is also good. car does not require the battery to idle, just to crank the starter.

this is a shot in the dark too but hows the grounding on your alternator?

05-17-2008, 11:21 PM
maybe somthing is shorting out the alternator? if you have any gauges that have the steel braided line, they might be touching the alternator and shorting it out. an easy way to fix it is to just wrap the line in cloth tape or electrical tape where its touching. if the smoke doesn't have a distinct smell, it usually means electrical.

thats what happened with me, except it happened to the starter.

i need tires
05-18-2008, 11:32 AM
this same thing happened on my buddies mercedes, and it ended up being his power wire from the battery to the harness had fried