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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Long story short, i broke down while driving because i started to smell smoke through the vents. Pulled over and told someone to start the car and the car started but the whole serpentine belt assembly was shaking and rattling. At first I was almost certain it was a loose pulley, maybe the tensioner or idle pulley, but I took it to a mechanic and it took almost 3 weeks for them to look at it so it was sitting in the cold for a while. They said the engine was seized, and they could only turn the crankshaft 1/4 a turn. I just don't understand how my engine seized so quick or if its even seized to start with. Any ideas? Thanks!!
 

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There are only a few things that can cause engine seizure:

Overheating due to failure of the cooling system or the lubrication system. With overheating, the pistons expand to the extent they will no longer slide up and down in their bores. Since you smelled smoke, it makes sense to assume overheating. Were you able to drive the car to the mechanic or did you have it towed?

Mechanical lock-up due to a crankshaft connecting rod breaking or coming loose. A broken crankshaft is possible but unlikely.

I have experienced a near seizure due to overheating. A radiator hose had split but I turned the engine off in time and avoided seizure. Also had a conrod come loose once. Fortunately I was in a parking lot going about 5 mph when the car came to an abrupt stop. In this case, the engine had to be pulled to repair it. I did the work myself but needed to get the crank journals ground at a machine shop.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I smelt the smoke coming through the vents so I immediately shut off the car and put it in neutral. The thing is once I was pulled over, someone started the car for me and it started and was running, however the serpentine belt assembly was shaking and it seemed like a loose pulley or something. I took it to a mechanic shop and they took very long to take a look at it so the car has been sitting for about 3 weeks, then they claimed the engine was seized. So once I got the car back because they instantly quoted me for a new engine I boosted the battery and tried to start the car however it wouldn't start, no crank or anything. I just don't understand if the engine is actually seized or maybe one of the pulleys is stuck. The weather here is also very cold, -20C to -30C. Thanks for your help or if you have any further opinions.
 

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The first thing I'd do is remove the serpentine belt, then try to start it. And if it does start, don't run it for long because the water pump won't be spinning, but you've determined it's something in the accessory drive and you can narrow down from there.
And if it still won't start, what does it sound like? If the engine really is seized, there should be a pronounced noise as the starter engages the flywheel that won't rotate.
Next I'd take the spark plugs out to see if it will rotate that way. Could be hydro-locked. Just guessing, but it's very easy to rule that out.
Finally I'd put a socket on the crank pulley bolt and try to turn it with a long breaker bar. If the bolt starts to rotate further in, STOP. It's time to pull the engine.
 
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