Friends car

Hello I am active duty USAF and had a friend let me use his car while he is deployed for a year. Well of course while I was driving it to keep the battery charged, it died the engine stop. It was running great up until that point. I had it towed back home and checked for spark, fuel and it turned over. The next day I tried to start it again and after a few tries it started, so I took it for spin and made it about 5 miles and it died again. I let it cool off for a few hours and it started. Could be an electrical problem with something heating up? A relay maybe any ideas? I would like some ideas so when I take it to a shop I don’t feel like I am being taken. It’s a 1986 turbo. Thanks, Douglas

Need a lot more info. Is there fuel or spark when the engine dies? Does it crank just after it dies? Is your buddy a kinda guy to put in a anti theft device that would do this? Like turn off the engine after 5-10 min?

Thanks for the reply.
? Fuel: yes, and it?s fresh. I did check the fuel flow the pump works fine.
? Spark: yes
? When the engine dies? Does it crank just after it dies? Yes it does
? Is your buddy a kind of guy to put in an anti theft device that would do this? No, I have been driving the car to and from work (5 miles) a couple times a week for the last three months.
? Like turn off the engine after 5-10 min? It will not start after a few min, it has only started after about 2.5 hours.
If you have any more questions please ask. THANKS

Sincere thanks to both you and your friend for serving. Your plight brings back memories of '72-'73 when I rotated overseas and gave my car to a fellow airman to care for.

It sounds like it’s losing fuel. I’m unfamiliar with the specifics of this car, but will offer a few generic suggestions:

  • fuel pump growing weak
  • fuel pump relay heating up (located in underhood relay box perhaps?)
  • fule filter clogged
  • gas tank developing a vacuum as the gas in pumped out due to a plugged canister or vent line.

Thanks for the reply, and thank you for your service!

  • I haved ordered a new fuel relay and fuel filter I hope it fixes the problem.
    Is there anyway to test the relay switches??


A relay can be bench tested. Generally, the solenoid will ectivate with 12VDC applied (that can be verified usually by reading the side of the relay) and the individual contacts can be resistance checked (you’d need a schematic for this…it may even be printed on the side of the relay). Beyond that the only way is to plug it in a try it.