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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have had my 2003 Impala Base 3.4L for about a month now, and got the Intake done a couple weeks ago. My check engine light has been on since I got it (had scanned and is a bad egr), but it has been doing great on gas until this week (I would guess I have driven 60 miles and used 1/3 tank of gas!), but a tank has been lasting 2 weeks up until now) I have noticed a pretty major loss of power since the intake was done (maybe related, maybe not), but it has been running fine. I have also noticed it seems to hesitate when it shifts, especially when it is cold. The rpms seem to get higher than normal, and it kind of hesitates into the next gear. The most noticeable is from 1st to 2nd. (it could just be me though, my last car jerked hard into every gear, this one is still much smoother) I am wondering if the egr is causing all of this, or if something else is up. (I don't know if this is related either, but for a few days after the intake was done, the exhaust looked somewhat smoky/hazy and had a really strong, lingering chemical odor, something like bleach or fertilizer. It went away though.) It has a new oil pressure sensor (a few days after the intake gaskets), new valve cover gaskets, and resonator removed (catalytic converter is still in place though) The car has 163,000 miles. Currently not leaking or burning any fluids.
 

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Get that EGR taken care of and see how it is after that, its probably all thats wrong. The haze and odor from the exhaust was probably crap that got into the cylinders when the intake was done, now its burned off.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I will get it cleaned/replaced soon, most likely next weekend or so. The car seems to be running fine, it runs smooth and starts good, it just doesnt seem to have much power and is using a TON of gas. I noticed tonight on my way home from work, if I really get on it it seems to shift fine, I nearly floored it getting on the expressway, and it shifted as smooth as ever. (I don't usually drive like that, I am usually VERY easy on the gas pedal, I just wanted to see what it would do)
 

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I will get it cleaned/replaced soon, most likely next weekend or so. The car seems to be running fine, it runs smooth and starts good, it just doesnt seem to have much power and is using a TON of gas. I noticed tonight on my way home from work, if I really get on it it seems to shift fine, I nearly floored it getting on the expressway, and it shifted as smooth as ever. (I don't usually drive like that, I am usually VERY easy on the gas pedal, I just wanted to see what it would do)
fix it quick other wise you will have even more issues

such as damaging the catalytic converter
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Hopefully it will be fixed next weekend (I get my check on friday), but I have a funny feeling the catalytic converter may be going bad as well. This might not be much to go by, but the exhaust smells like a vehicle that does not have a converter (strong, lingering odor, like a lawnmower), not what a normal car smells like. I will get the egr fixed first and see where it goes. Hopefully that will take care of it.
 

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Mr. Handy
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With 163k miles the cat is likely plugged anyways. Have that replaced and clean/replace the egr valve AND tube. I guarantee your gas mileage will go up after that.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Will start with the egr and go from there. I'm not on an unlimited budget, so I am only going to do what os actually needed, not just start dumping parts in it. If the egr doesn't fix it, I will look into replacing the catalytic converter (would just remove it completely, we don't have inspections in Michigan, but I don't want the check engine light on for all eternity)
 

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Mr. Handy
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^^ FYI: No exhaust shop will remove the cat and weld in a pipe. It's against the law and they will not do it. You could do it yourself but, that will still require an 02 emulator to trick the computer into thinking you have one. You'd prob be better off having an exhaust shop just weld in a new cat converter if your going on the cheap. You're cat is likely plugged. These cats don't last much longer than about 100k miles.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Won't a bad catalytic converter set a code on the check engine light? The check engine light is on (because of the bad egr), but when I had it scanned (the day after I bought the car), the only codes were for the bad egr (3 of them?), but the battery has been disconnected since then, and the check engine light comes back on in about 20 minutes.
 

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Mr. Handy
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Won't a bad catalytic converter set a code on the check engine light? The check engine light is on (because of the bad egr), but when I had it scanned (the day after I bought the car), the only codes were for the bad egr (3 of them?), but the battery has been disconnected since then, and the check engine light comes back on in about 20 minutes.
Yes it will. But, a bad cat usually takes a while to set a code. The downstream o2 sensor takes a while to recognize the difference and then set a code. I have a plugged cat and have unhooked the battery before also. It usually takes about 1hr for mine to come back. Since only the egr codes come up on yours I would get the fixed first. Then, clear codes (unhook battery) and drive for a while. See if others come up.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Ok, the EGR is cleaned and working, it seems to be actually running a bit better, most of the power has returned, but I drove around town for about an hour or so running errands, and on the way back home, it started jerking into gears, it did that for about 6 miles varying between 25-45 miles an hour. I went back out a bit later with my Dad to show him what it was actually doing, and it only jerked once, and only after it was warmed up really well. We bought transmission fluid, a transmission filter, and transmission pan gasket, and we are going to change the fluid and filter tomorrow afternoon. Hopefully that will fix it, I really dont have the money for major transmission work :(
 

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Mr. Handy
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Ok, the EGR is cleaned and working, it seems to be actually running a bit better, most of the power has returned, but I drove around town for about an hour or so running errands, and on the way back home, it started jerking into gears, it did that for about 6 miles varying between 25-45 miles an hour. I went back out a bit later with my Dad to show him what it was actually doing, and it only jerked once, and only after it was warmed up really well. We bought transmission fluid, a transmission filter, and transmission pan gasket, and we are going to change the fluid and filter tomorrow afternoon. Hopefully that will fix it, I really dont have the money for major transmission work :(
How dirty was the egr? Pretty bad?

Have you cleaned the MAF sensor lately. Could be the source of the jerking. But, changing the trans fluid/filter is not a bad idea either. How long since the last trans fluid replacement, that you know of?
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
The egr had quite a bit of sooty stuff in it, but cleaned up well. No, I haven't cleaned the maf sensor at all, but it was taken out when we did the intake. I don't know when (if ever...) the transmission fluid was last changed, The previous owners had it 7 years and bought it from a GM dealer. We changed the fluid and filter, the fluid was reddish brown and smelled nasty, and the pan had some gray goo in the bottom. That was all cleaned thouroughly, and refilled with new fluid. I drove it around the block, and it seemed to shift smoother, but then I didn't drive it far enough to warm up. I have to go to work at 2:30 so I will see how it does then (6 miles each way).
 

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X2 on cleaning the MAF, believe it or not the MAF plays a roll on how everything else eith the car is controlled. A dirty MAF will put out off readings and in turn effect the way eveything else is ran. Take it out a spray it good with MAF cleaner only, DO NOT touch the wire inside the post. You can spray it but do not touch it physically, after that let it dry before you put it back in.
 
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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Well I'm back from work, apparently the trans. fluid was way overdue to be changed. It is shifting better than it has since I bought the car. It shifts super smooth and doesn't "search" for the gears. It goes directly into overdrive/4th/5th/ whatever the last gear is at highway speeds, which it didn't do before, I would have to let off the gas several times before it would engage (most of the time it wouldn't engage at all under 65-70 mph unless it was really warm) I am glad that it wasn't a major problem, and I am thrilled with how the car is running now! I might clean the maf sensor, but it seems to be fine now.
 

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Mr. Handy
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^^ I would still recommend cleaning the MAF sensor. I'd be willing to bet it will run even better and get better gas mileage. MAF sensors are a common thing that don't get near as much attention/maintenance as they should. And they play a huge role in your performance.

As said before: Use ONLY a spray maf cleaner and do NOT touch the wires inside. Let dry and re-install. Also a good idea to unhook battery before doing so, as this will reset the PCM.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Ok, I figured I would post an update- After about a week, It still has plenty of power, but is randomly shifting a bit hard, not all the time, and not jerking, but I can feel it shift out of one gear, pause, then shift into the next gear. After cleaning the egr, and resetting the check engine light, I drove about 6 miles, and the check engine light came back on as I was getting off the expressway. I havent had the codes scanned yet, but probably will sometime in the next couple days. Obviously my main concern is the transmission at this point... Am I in immediate danger of the transmission crapping out, or should it be ok for a while? I am planning on taking a trip in a couple weeks, about 4 hours each way, and I don't want to end up on the side of the road somewhere.
 

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Mr. Handy
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I would have the codes read immediately!! It could be failing shift solenoid or pressure solenoid and could cause MAJOR transmission problems.
 

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I have had my 2003 Impala Base 3.4L for about a month now, and got the Intake done a couple weeks ago. My check engine light has been on since I got it (had scanned and is a bad egr), but it has been doing great on gas until this week (I would guess I have driven 60 miles and used 1/3 tank of gas!), but a tank has been lasting 2 weeks up until now) I have noticed a pretty major loss of power since the intake was done (maybe related, maybe not), but it has been running fine. I have also noticed it seems to hesitate when it shifts, especially when it is cold. The rpms seem to get higher than normal, and it kind of hesitates into the next gear. The most noticeable is from 1st to 2nd. (it could just be me though, my last car jerked hard into every gear, this one is still much smoother) I am wondering if the egr is causing all of this, or if something else is up. (I don't know if this is related either, but for a few days after the intake was done, the exhaust looked somewhat smoky/hazy and had a really strong, lingering chemical odor, something like bleach or fertilizer. It went away though.) It has a new oil pressure sensor (a few days after the intake gaskets), new valve cover gaskets, and resonator removed (catalytic converter is still in place though) The car has 163,000 miles. Currently not leaking or burning any fluids.
Stop playing kiddie games on here Dustin !! us hard working Impala mechanics have better things to do than to chase your ghosts !! OK ?
 
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