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Jim Grant Tech Tips Jim Grant Tech Tips
A collection of helpful articles based on reader submissions
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Below is a collection of Jim Grant's Tech Tips sorted by Vehicle Make. These Tech Tips were answers to questions submitted to Jim by users over the course of many years.
If you have any questions, please feel free to email us.



Lincoln - Mercury
  Jim Grant's Tech Tips

97 Pontiac Grand Prix, Check Engine Soon, Problems In Italy
Q: My friend (who is stationed in Italy) is hoping that you might be able to help her with a problem on her '97 Pontiac Grand Prix. The "Check Engine Soon" light came on recently and she took it to a garage there and they were able to do a diagnostic test on it and told her that it had a "Code 258-Evap Canister Purge Control Solenoid" problem. She canít get parts for it there and wants me to send her the part but really wants to know from you if...

  • #1 This is the cause of the problem,
  • #2 Where is the solenoid located and finally,
  • #3 Will it harm her engine if she keeps on driving with this problem???

By the way it is a 6 cylinder, with about 70k miles on it. Thereís not a Pontiac dealer to be had where she's at and she really hopes you can help!....Lloyd

A: Something got lost in the translation. The Code "number" you provided doesnít work well for an Evaporative Canister Purge Control Solenoid problem. Also donít send any parts overseas just yet. When a vehicle computer sets a Diagnostic Trouble Code (DTC) for a computer problem it doesnít mean, with authority, that the component or part has failed, it only means the system is not operating within the designed parameters. With this in mind the answer to your first question is maybe. The GM diagnostic procedures found in the ALLDATA Information System notes that when servicing a purge solenoid DTC, it is important to check the canister fresh air vent, vacuum switch and integrity of all purge hoses prior to servicing the solenoid. Basically other problems can make the wrong part look bad. As for the location- there are 3 different 6 cylinder engines available for that vehicle. I need engine info to answer that. Will it harm the engine? Without proper diagnoses there is no way to answer that from this side of the ocean. What your friend needs to do is find someone who can diagnose the problem and pin down just what is needed to make the correct repair. Tell your friend to send air line tickets and Iíll bring my diagnostic tools, Italy is just about the right size for a test drive.

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