Q&A - MX-6 Turbo
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Q: I have a number of problems with my 1999 Mazda MX-6 turbo. First of all there is a short somewhere as all the plastic has melted off the shifter cable for the transmission. When looking for the short, I took everything apart and never found it. I put everything back together, the car starts but idles really rough in super low RPM. The car then starts to over-heat, the main air intake sensor valve (something) next to the air filter is unplugged and the car only runs when it's unplugged. If I plug it back in, the car shuts off. The car ran before I took it apart. Please help, thank you.
My car ran stuttering but it never overheated. I never touched the coolant and nothing is leaking. Everything was fine except there was a short that caused my positive battery connector to burst into pieces every time I try to start the car. The alternator went out and I replaced it. I went into the car, under the dash and unplugged every wire from power, including the computer. When I put everything back together, it wouldn't start for a little while. I then tinkered around and now it starts, and it's drive-able, it over-heats halfway until the fan kicks in, and stays halfway. The car only runs only while the massive air flow sensor is unplugged. When plugged in, the car dies in a second. Why does it die when I plug it in?
A: Your shifter cable doesn't have any wiring in it so there is no short and the melted plastic should not make a difference. It isn't causing any of your carís problems. The thing that is unplugged near your air filter or on your intake piping is most likely your mas air flow sensor.
This basically tells your car how to run. It shouldn't hurt your car to drive without it but I'm surprised it even starts. It will probably give you bad gas mileage though. I am sure that your overheating problem is unrelated to it. Check your coolant/antifreeze level and see about having a mechanic change your thermostat. It could be stuck shut not allowing coolant into your engine.
You should also check the grounding wire from the battery to engine and engine to body.
The thing next to the air filter is probably the air sensor. As far as overheating its can be many things such as the thermostat, water pump, or can even be low coolant since you said you took everything apart the coolant probably got drained.