Hard Start Problem

Tiny
KAIKIING
  • MEMBER
  • 1994 TOYOTA COROLLA
  • 173,657 MILES
My car has a hard-start problem. If the engine remain off for few days. I can start up normally. But after drive then remain off for few hours, I have to press the accelerator for quite some times before it can start properly.

Idling is also very unstable, sometimes it runs normally while at other times it drops too low, causing too much engine vibration.

What is the problem and how can it be fixed?

Thank you.

KaiKiing
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Sunday, September 11th, 2011 AT 4:05 AM

41 Replies

Tiny
PROMECHANIC
  • MEMBER
There are a number of different things that might be causing this. You should first have your codes checked as that might give you a hint as to what might be going on.
Here are a few things that need to be checked.
1) Your fuel pressure. If it is low it might cause a problem like this.
2) Your idle air control valve. It is what keeps your car running then you take your foot off the gas.

Check out this repair guide which can help us fix the problem

https://www.2carpros.com/articles/engine-cranks-excessively-before-starting

Please run down this guide and report back.
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Sunday, September 11th, 2011 AT 4:13 AM
Tiny
KAIKIING
  • MEMBER
May I know how to check the fuel pressure?Can we check it our self?There is no scanner tools at my area that why cannot check for the code.

Thanks
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Sunday, September 11th, 2011 AT 4:30 AM
Tiny
PROMECHANIC
  • MEMBER
You can check it yourself. If you go to an auto parts store just ask for a fuel pressure gauge and tell them what kind of car you have. They should be able to sell you one that will fit your car.
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Sunday, September 11th, 2011 AT 4:40 AM
Tiny
KAIKIING
  • MEMBER
If the problem is because of fuel pressure then what should I do?Which part I need to change or repair?Is it high chance for the IACV to cause these problem also?

Thanks
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Sunday, September 11th, 2011 AT 4:56 AM
Tiny
PROMECHANIC
  • MEMBER
If the fuel pressure is low then it is most likely because of a clogged fuel filter or a bad fuel pump.
There is a good chance that the IAC is bad, but there is no way for me to tell. You could take it off and clean it. That might help.
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Sunday, September 11th, 2011 AT 5:04 AM
Tiny
KAIKIING
  • MEMBER
Please correct me if I've misunderstanding for the IACV location from the photo attached. Any suggestion for the cleaner can use for cleaning up the IACV?
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Sunday, September 11th, 2011 AT 5:27 AM
Tiny
PROMECHANIC
  • MEMBER
I can't quite tell if that is the IAC or the throttle position sensor. It looks like the TPS because it looks like it's adjustable. It might be under that or on the other side.
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Sunday, September 11th, 2011 AT 5:37 AM
Tiny
KAIKIING
  • MEMBER
Am I correct?Please advice me.

Thanks
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Sunday, September 11th, 2011 AT 5:56 AM
Tiny
PROMECHANIC
  • MEMBER
That looks like it.
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Sunday, September 11th, 2011 AT 5:58 AM
Tiny
KAIKIING
  • MEMBER
Did I need to dismantle the whole total body if I want to clean it up?Or just unscrew down the IAV?Anyway to confirm if the IACV is down?

Thanks
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Sunday, September 11th, 2011 AT 6:05 AM
Tiny
PROMECHANIC
  • MEMBER
Just unscrew the IAC. Clean it with carburetor cleaner.
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Sunday, September 11th, 2011 AT 6:11 AM
Tiny
KAIKIING
  • MEMBER
This result consider as idle or not?I've try clean up the Throttle body and also the IACV and get this result better than previous but still have problem with start up. Any other suggestion?
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Friday, September 16th, 2011 AT 11:24 AM
Tiny
KAIKIING
  • MEMBER
Please show me the diagram how to test for IAC on ECM. Thanks
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Sunday, October 2nd, 2011 AT 12:22 AM
Tiny
CHRISP83
  • MEMBER
  • 1994 TOYOTA COROLLA
  • 4 CYL
  • FWD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 129,000 MILES
Same car as my previous post(Air filter housing).

Before I took it in for the engine re-build, it would start "one kick", whether hot or cold, even after not driving it for a week plus. I could even turn the key with my hand through the window and it would start, no revving required.

Now, hot or cold, I have to continuously crank the engine for a bout 5-8 secs, with my foot a bit on the throttle, before it comes to life. Once it does start, there is a rough idle, sort of misfire for about 5 more seconds, then a smooth idle. Thereafter its smooth to drive, plenty power and acceleration.

The mechs say they took the car to a service shop for "tuning" before they delivered it back to me. I'm not sure what this "tuning" exactly was.

Any ideas?
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Friday, October 16th, 2020 AT 10:12 AM (Merged)
Tiny
MMPRINCE4000
  • EXPERT
Check fuel pressure with a mechanical gauge, most Toyota's require a special tool set since they do not have a fuel pressure test port. Also check the fuel pressure regulator vacuum line for the presence of gas, which would indicate a ruptured FPR diaphram.

OR, spray some starting fluid in throttle body and if it starts right up for a few seconds, then fuel issue, if not then ignition problem.

Ask the installer to define what they exactly mean by "tune".
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Friday, October 16th, 2020 AT 10:12 AM (Merged)
Tiny
CHRISP83
  • MEMBER
The "tune-up" was basically checking timing & co emissions etc.

I took it back to the service shop, had to leave it overnight as this problem "can only be solved when the car is cold". The mechanic says he "set" the choke on the car.

When I collected, it was starting perfectly, now, 1 day later, same problem.
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Friday, October 16th, 2020 AT 10:12 AM (Merged)
Tiny
CHRISP83
  • MEMBER
Update....

I shorted pins TE1 and E1 on the diagnosis connector. The "check engine" light gave me a code 24, which is "air intake temp sensor" according to

https://www.2carpros.com/trouble_codes/obd2

I disconnected the sensor, now car is starting nicely. Could be a coincidence, will have to see.

I will drive around tomorrow and see if the problem comes back.

Any harm in driving for a short period of time with the sensor disconnected?
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Friday, October 16th, 2020 AT 10:12 AM (Merged)
Tiny
CHRISP83
  • MEMBER
I am having a tough time finding the air temp sensor. Is there a way to test it using a multimeter?

I would like to know that it is definately faulty (and not a electrical short in the car) before having to order from outside the country.
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+2
Friday, October 16th, 2020 AT 10:12 AM (Merged)
Tiny
KENMORE MAYERS
  • MEMBER
  • 1994 TOYOTA COROLLA
  • 1.5L
  • 4 CYL
  • 2WD
  • MANUAL
  • 254,767 MILES
Hard start on mornings and the rev meter shoots a and trembles in a stuck position. When it does start it not a smooth idle even with acceleration. Seems like something is sticking but I generally have this issue early in the morning
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Friday, October 16th, 2020 AT 10:12 AM (Merged)
Tiny
KEN
  • ADMIN
Have you had the engine tuned up recently? Its sounds like the spark plugs need replacing. Please get back to us so it will help others
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Friday, October 16th, 2020 AT 10:12 AM (Merged)

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