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post #1 of 26 (permalink) Old 09-08-2018, 10:24 PM Thread Starter
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Need some help with vibration

I know a lot of guys cross over to the Solstice from here, but thought I would post it here too. For those that don't know me here, I have an '08 Sol GXP with 82k on it. It's dyno tuned, has had the WP at about 58k done, had a HPFP done last year. Replaced my thermo this spring. Now that this is out of the way....

I need help with a NASTY vibraion at 1k rpm....

A bit of background....

I took my car in May to a tire store to have my rim leaks fixed. When I arrived, I told the guy writing it up that there were lifting instructions in the car as I have undercar LEDs on my rails, so they must follow these instructions. No problem...I've had other work done here with my other cars and they've ALWAYS done really good work and have been careful. But this time I made a mistake and left the store because I had other errands to do that day. When I returned to pick it up, the writer was adamant that I look under the car to make sure my floor was okay. No problem I thought, so I did... Looked fine. As I drove home I noticed a new noise that I didn't have before. A high pitch tinging, sound. When I got home I seen that my Solo exhaust mesh hinge joint was failing....or so I thought. As I pulled it in the garage, I noticed a vibration the car never had before. My car, even though dyno tuned to the ragged edge, has always been rather smooth... I thought maybe they took my car out on a test drive and pulled more then 7k RPM because I have no rev limiter and my car gets to 7k in 1st and 2nd in the blink of an eye. Long story short, I took the car to Midas to have the front portion of the exhaust redone (Solo sent me a new part) and I was shown that the exhaust was pushed against the driveshaft tunnel. Hmmmm.....could this be my vibration? Nope. Vibration was still there after I picked it up.

I have done research on my issue and found that other LNFs experienced the same sort of vibration when they had a balancer chain guide failure, but theirs seems to be a bit larger range of RPMs then mine. Mine seems to be very nasty around the 950-1050 mark, every other LNF seems to be 1000-1500 or even 2000 RPMs that has this issue. So last weekend after my radio got alien lettering, I decided that it was time to replace my 10 year old battery. After replacing it, I started the car and the vibration was gone!! Could it have been my battery causing this issue? I drove it the next day and put about 100 miles on it with no vibration. Hmmmm....did a battery fix it?!?!

Nope. I was going to drive it to work on Friday so I thought I would start it and go put gas in it....guess what? The vibration was back, and back with a vengence! It's so bad that it literally made all the plastic joints in the interior squeak as it shook. So I left it idle for a few minutes, then decided to rev it to 2k and hold it there for a few seconds (20 or so I think). After I did this, the vibration was gone!!! It did not rear it's ugly head again during that idle session. So I started it again today and the vibration is back. It is cyclical while it's there... Today I could not get it to go away. I'm at a loss. I need some advice/help and hoping maybe the right person here knows what might be wrong. I really don't want to tear into the timing chain and replace all of that...and I'm NOT paying a dealer to do it...not at $2000 that I was quoted. I'll buy a brand new long block with turbo for less then that and do that myself! So here's what I know:

Vibration is between ~950 to ~1050rpm
Vibration comes and goes, but it's there most of the time at cold start. Seems to go away after the car gets warm but has been there after warmed up.
It was recommended that I replace the Throttle Position Sensor as they can "lose their parameters" and must "re-learn" when they start to fail, and will create a rough RPM range until they do so. The re-learn phase happens above 2k RPM, which would explain why the vibration goes away after it warms up.

So, before I tear up my motor...any suggestions?
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post #2 of 26 (permalink) Old 09-09-2018, 12:52 AM
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Do you feel the vibration in the steering wheel? If you do then this could be in the suspension somewhere but it sounds engine/drivetrain related. This is a strange one Ghost.


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post #3 of 26 (permalink) Old 09-09-2018, 09:38 AM
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Odd set of conditions here. Has me scratching my head too as to what this could be here.

Rough idle during & after warm up. Could be the Throttle Body, cam intake/exhaust, position sensors. MAF maybe?
Vibration: The " floor check " and the exhaust repair, with driveshaft tunnel. No LED's were harmed during this. Legal stuff out of the way.
Exhaust repair might have something to do with it, CAT flange, clamp rubbing somewhere? Drive shaft out of alignment, un-balanced, bad universal joint? Bad Cat?

Battery: Alien lettering. Yup pretty much a tell tale sign there that the battery is kaput. Replacing it, does not explain the rough idle or vibration though.
Safe is better than sorry here. New power, clean connections and piece of mind for down the road. Rough idle & vibrations... No.

WP: Balancer chain guide failure. Nah imo I think it would have been way worse IF that had gone out, no matter what the rpm's were. Timing chain slipped a tooth, out of top dead center, bad compression in cylinders? Seems there would be more issues/problems codes if that was the case.

Wheel hub bolts: Could be for vibrations, check lug nuts too? You never know when Fast Eddie will strike your Kappa... it has been known to happen before.
HPFP: I doubt it is this. Un-even fuel distribution? Fuel starvation? Maybe for the rough idle, some vibration maybe.

Fuses; You never know until you check them. Something might be gone there?
Bad gas: Not likely. Water/dirt shouldn't cause that much vibration. Maybe rough idle though.

Banana in the tail pipe: That's it.. it worked in the movie for Eddie.

Have no fear the Kappa community is here. Leave no problem un-solved. We will figure this out. Lot of help around here. Some owner has clues, and solutions to this. Work the problem at hand.

LAC

Last edited by LAC Sky; 09-09-2018 at 09:43 AM.
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post #4 of 26 (permalink) Old 09-09-2018, 12:37 PM Thread Starter
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Should have been a bit more specific. I know that it's motor related. It happens when the car is not moving. And seems to more of a vibration then a miss. So I was on the path of possible fly wheel weight, but, that couldn't be because it comes and goes. And it is horrific this last time. You can hear every piece of plastic squeaking inside the car right now. But once it gets warmed up, it's gone....but could come back. A balancer chain guide failure would have the car doing this all the time and would also be throughout all RPMs...I would think. My other possibility is this. When I did my thermo this spring, I only pulled out about 1.5 gallons of fluid....but the car somehow took almost 2 gallons when I refilled it. My MAF only has about 10k on it, and the readings are rather steady, so I doubt it's that. Camshaft solenoids were replaced last summer with my HPFP

So here's where my thoughts are:

Throttle Position Sensor
"Lazy" Fuel Injector
Alternator not putting out enough of a charge at that RPM range at times
Possible coil going out, but not bad enough to set a CEL
HPFP not putting out enough fuel - my fuel pressure stays the same at 1k as it does at idle of 720. Then it starts to increase.

So those are my thoughts.
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post #5 of 26 (permalink) Old 09-09-2018, 12:50 PM
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Are you sure it's not transmission/flywheel related?
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post #6 of 26 (permalink) Old 09-09-2018, 12:54 PM Thread Starter
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Are you sure it's not transmission/flywheel related?
2 things that have made me shy away from that area. It happens in neutral, or while I have the clutch in while in gear.

Furthermore, it seems to be less of an issue once the car is warmed up. It can come back, but happens a lot less and the vibration isn't as severe once the engine is warm if it comes back.
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post #7 of 26 (permalink) Old 09-09-2018, 01:10 PM
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Originally Posted by The_Ghost View Post
2 things that have made me shy away from that area. It happens in neutral, or while I have the clutch in while in gear.

Furthermore, it seems to be less of an issue once the car is warmed up. It can come back, but happens a lot less and the vibration isn't as severe once the engine is warm if it comes back.
Just thought I'd throw it out there...

It seems like the next step is to put it on a Tech2 and read all of the detailed diagnostic information. Symptoms that severe that "come and go" seem like they should have clues that reveal themselves on the scanner...
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post #8 of 26 (permalink) Old 09-09-2018, 01:20 PM Thread Starter
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Just thought I'd throw it out there...

It seems like the next step is to put it on a Tech2 and read all of the detailed diagnostic information. Symptoms that severe that "come and go" seem like they should have clues that reveal themselves on the scanner...
I don't disagree with you, but being a former service writer I know the routine.... NPF - No Problem Found.

Here's what will happen:

7am - Drop car at dealership and tell them just to "hook it up to the diag machine".
2:30pm - Tech goes out to vehicle, starts car with diag tool hooked up.

Version 1:
2:35pm - No code, no issues found, takes for a test drive
2:38pm - NPF
2:50pm - tells writer there is no issue and NPF
5:30pm - writer calls me and says NPF
5:50pm - I pay $185 for a diag that did nothing.

Version 2:
2:35pm - No code, tries to look at parameters and realizes that vehicle is not standard code in PCM
2:38pm - Rewrites PCM to original GM tune
2:50pm - tells writer he had to flash PCM
5:30pm - writer calls me and says we reflashed your PCM
5:50pm - I pay $185 for a stock tune and vibration still persists


Sorry to anyone that's a writer, but this has been my experience in the dealership world at several dealers now...

Last edited by The_Ghost; 09-09-2018 at 01:22 PM.
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post #9 of 26 (permalink) Old 09-09-2018, 01:31 PM
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Oh, please don't misunderstand me, I never said you should take it to the dealer and put it on the Tech2. You should just do it yourself. You can buy an interface cable and then a subscription to the software and do it yourself at home. In my experience both in the USA and in Europe (sorry, dealers) the factory service centers are untrustworthy and useless at everything except taking your money. Saab owners are experts when it comes to this at-home diagnostics, you can do a lot of reading on saabcentral.com, most of that knowledge applies to all GM makes and models, including the Sky.

I have a MongoosePro GM 2 cable. It was $450, but it was some of the best money I've spent when it comes to car care/diagnostics. You can also buy a Chinese knock-off Tech 2, but I've heard mixed reviews regarding their quality.
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post #10 of 26 (permalink) Old 09-09-2018, 03:58 PM
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Originally Posted by The_Ghost View Post
Should have been a bit more specific. I know that it's motor related. It happens when the car is not moving. And seems to more of a vibration then a miss. So I was on the path of possible fly wheel weight, but, that couldn't be because it comes and goes. And it is horrific this last time. You can hear every piece of plastic squeaking inside the car right now. But once it gets warmed up, it's gone....but could come back. A balancer chain guide failure would have the car doing this all the time and would also be throughout all RPMs...I would think. My other possibility is this. When I did my thermo this spring, I only pulled out about 1.5 gallons of fluid....but the car somehow took almost 2 gallons when I refilled it. My MAF only has about 10k on it, and the readings are rather steady, so I doubt it's that. Camshaft solenoids were replaced last summer with my HPFP

So here's where my thoughts are:

Throttle Position Sensor
"Lazy" Fuel Injector
Alternator not putting out enough of a charge at that RPM range at times
Possible coil going out, but not bad enough to set a CEL
HPFP not putting out enough fuel - my fuel pressure stays the same at 1k as it does at idle of 720. Then it starts to increase.

So those are my thoughts.
Thanks for the additional info. I figured you already had focused in on it being engine related but always good to have a more complete picture with something like this.

What gets me is with that bad of a vibration, what would cause it and NOT throw some P030X codes? It sounds pretty violent. Like you said, if it was a balance shaft issue you'd think that you'd see ti all the time. A plug or coil issue to cause that kind of vibration would certainly trigger a misfire code. Other items like engine mounts should be consistent too but it could be the trans mount got damaged when they were doing the exhaust. A long shot and I don't give it a high degree of probability but you could check it.


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post #11 of 26 (permalink) Old 09-09-2018, 04:46 PM
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A broken engine or transmission mount is actually reasonable, especially given that this appeared to start after a lifting incident.

Damaging an elastic mount could change the resonant frequency of the system enough to cause amplified vibration at 1000 RPM. It would explain the on-again off-again activity and the lack of codes.

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post #12 of 26 (permalink) Old 09-10-2018, 01:13 PM
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I'm going to take another route on this. So, you said after you replaced the battery it went away for a full day. What I'm thinking is that it wasn't the battery that "fixed" the vibration initially, but whatever ELSE you touched to replace the battery. Did you go through the well to get to the batter or did you take the front off? Maybe touching whatever it was to replace the battery kind of seated it for a time and that's why there was no vibration. Pretty much, I would look at anything you did around the time of the battery change, and what related stuff happened that caused it to stop for a day.
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post #13 of 26 (permalink) Old 09-10-2018, 10:13 PM Thread Starter
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I took the fender off to do the battery. Nothing else touched.

My initial thought was the alternator can't/wasn't putting out enough voltage at 1k RPM to "take over" for the battery, therefore the car would run on the battery and the alternator would put a load on the engine because it's straining to give enough power. This still is my thought. I'm driving it to work tomorrow and hope I don't blow up, so going to data log with my Torque app and watch the voltages. Thanks for the suggestion mstrjon32, but I would rather have HPTuners then spend $450 on the same thing, and still not be able to adjust my tune. With HPTuners, I can adjust my tune as required and it's only another $150.
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post #14 of 26 (permalink) Old 09-11-2018, 12:23 AM
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I'm driving it to work tomorrow and hope I don't blow up, so going to data log with my Torque app and watch the voltages. Thanks for the suggestion mstrjon32, but I would rather have HPTuners then spend $450 on the same thing, and still not be able to adjust my tune. With HPTuners, I can adjust my tune as required and it's only another $150.
It might work for this case, but I don't think that HP Tuners lets you have full control over all of the other modules in the car. Which, for me at least, makes the OEM solution more than worth it. It pays for itself after you program some new key fobs and add a passenger seat presence sensor...
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post #15 of 26 (permalink) Old 09-12-2018, 12:51 PM
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I use HPTuners and no, it does not give you the functionality of a tech 2 device.

Ghost, to really "do it all", you'd need HPT and a Tech 2 device. Even then, HPT doesn't give you access to every table in the ECM. I had a former GM programmer who worked on the PCM on the W-bodies hack a tuning program we used so he could unlock tables he knew were there but that the tuning device manufacturer either didn't know or didn't want to unlock. LOL...

SO wish we had that kind of resource for this platform.
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