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Hello, I have a problem with my 1998 Acura 3.2 TL which has had no problems until now (226k miles). It dies while it's running, happened about 4 times now. I was sitting in an intersection this morning after driving about 3-5 minutes and it shook around a bit, then died (Gas tank 1/2 full). I was able to start it again and drive it to a nearby parking lot where it is parked right now, I am afraid to drive it again. I JUST replaced all 6 spark plugs as it had broken down previously in an intersection about a week ago - thought I had bad spark plugs, apparently it's something else.
Getting it towed to get it checked out - but my question is - is it worth it to fix? What could it be? Good car, would like to keep if fixable problem.


  • Did you replace the plugs with the same brand and part number that you removed? Has the check engine light come on lately? Does the engine only stall while idling? Does it seem that if the engine were idling somewhat faster it wouldn't stall?
  • It could be a number of things. Make sure you don't let the mechanic just throw parts at it, or it will get needlessly expensive very quickly.

    Unscrew the gas cap and see if that solves the problem. If so, you have a tank venting problem. It's fairly common for venting problems to kill the car when you stop after a long drive.

  • I replaced the spark plugs with ones 'recommended' for my vehicle by an auto store (NGK iridium ones). The check engine light has not come on for about a year (and when it did, it was the catalytic converter going weak). Check engine light turned off and has stayed off for a year or so - but the catalytic converters have not been replaced. The engine only stalls while idling or in very low gears. It easily starts again but will die when shifted to reverse or drive. It does seem that when I drove it faster, it wouldn't stall. Also, when I turn on the car, it makes a very loud spinning/clicking sound that seems to be coming from the right area of the engine - But ONLY after I have shifted into reverse or drive. I know also that there is minor oil seepage coming from the valve cover gasket. I will try the gas cap trick. Thanks for your help!!!
  • sounds like an idle problem. rec. check for a dirty throttle body, if cleaning doesn't work, check the idle control system/valve...
  • It sounds like it could be the ignition switch, not the key lock cylinder but just the switch part that fits behind the key lock cylinder assembly. The symptoms sound typical to me, IMO. If so, it is a relatively inexpensive and not complicated fix.
  • Cleaning the throttle and idle air control could solve the stalling at idle problem. The noise when shifting into a gear may be an engine mount.
  • Fuel pump?
  • fuel filter?
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