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Help! Won't start

Cassondra McQueen

New Member
Jul 10, 2020
Hello all,
I can't get my 2005 XLR to start. Did get it to turn over once, but it only ran a couple minutes. Which wasn't even long enough to connect my OBD Code Reader to troubleshoot everything else that has stopped working, of which, there are too many to mention.
The convertible top "skin" flew off while in transit and we were never able to find it and I'm now wondering if possible water damage because of that, although unrelated, is to blame even though it was wrapped in plastic immediately after.
I've been following this forum since purchasing my XLR and have bought a new battery and a maintainer soon after buying the car, both of which were those recommended here. (we were having dead battery issues immediately)
*The new battery still has trouble staying charged.
I have also checked/ replaced fuses. It was running fine when last driven, although, as of late, had ran hot on several occasions. But once parked, has not started again since then.
No power is getting to the dash when turning the ignition switch to auxiliary and no "clicking" can be heard when you continue to turn the ignition switch in an attempt to start it and only on the one isolated occasion mentioned has it done so.
I wouldn't think it to be battery or fuse related and wouldn't think it's a starter issue, as it DID start without incident before and once more again since this issue began.
I don't understand why the dash lights, etc. Aren't working if the battery is reading a full charge unless it is water damage as I suspected. If so, what should I look for or replace? I haven't had the possibility of needing to replace any of the relays looked into either, but admit I wouldn't know what I would be looking for while doing so anyway.

Also, I had a mechanic tell me the head gasket bolts were "working out". Should these be replaced or simply tightened back into place? And is there another solution anyone has found to remedy this additional, often common problem with an XLR that would prevent this from happening again in the future?
It's probably safe to say anything that COULD go wrong with this car HAS and at this point can do nothing else until I figure out how to get it started and continue to idle at least long enough to connect my OBD Reader. Until then my only other option is to part it out and take a loss.
I am disabled , retired and on a fixed income so I bought this car thinking a Cadillac would be a dependable vehicle and a worthwhile investment but it has been the exact opposite. I find myself stranded most of the time and all the "extras" included in the outrageous price tag are always broken, breaking or currently "out of order". Don't get me wrong! Even though I'm disappointed (and heartbroken), to say the least, I fell hopelessly in love with her the moment I saw her and I want nothing more than to get her where she was intended to be. I just hope someone out there can help me do this if there are going to be so many problems. I didn't budget in the expenses of a full time mechanic to do repairs when buying this car as I thought I was buying a vehicle with the product quality one expects - and pays for, when purchasing a Cadillac. It's just really a shame.
Luckily, on the brighter side however, she's certainly a looker and I can still at least see her sitting my driveway. Well, once I get the top replaced anyway. : )
Last edited:


Seasoned Member
Apr 5, 2017
North Atlanta
well I would get another mechanic if he said the head bolts were " working out". He most likely does not know what he is talking about .Older northstar engines had a problem with the head bolts back in the 90's .By the time the XLR came out they had been redesigned and is not an issue .they can be a problem if the car has been run hot for an extended period of time. I have heard other so called mechanics when someone said they had a northstar engine they automatically say you better replace the head bolts without even knowing what year they are talking about. This is not an often or common problem at all. However the intake manifold bolts do come loose and simply need a torque of them. You can pull them out and apply loctite but its not really needed or recommended. .Just retorque them and you are good for 3-4 years . If the intake bolts are really loose you can get an air leak which will cause a rough idle when you say it ran hot are you low on fluid? did the light just come on? if it blew a head gasket which would require running it for a while after it was hot ,you could have water in the cylinders. I would start with checking the battery cables and connections. the battery is going to have to have a full strong charge to get it to crank.

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