Cranking, but not Starting

Tiny
CDERRICK23
  • MEMBER
  • 1998 NISSAN PATHFINDER
  • 178,000 MILES
A few day ago in the morning, our 98 Pathfinder would crank, but not start. We changed 5 out the 6 spark plugs and it ran fine that night and the next morning until about 20 min. Into driving. Then, the car began to idle bad and acting like it was going to shut off. I arrived at work and when beginning to leave, it cranked and started but again idled bad while in park and drive and would shut off. Tried to have spark plug replaced, but no mechanic was willing and able at time. Attempted to drive home and it shut completely off coming down the road. No smoke, radio and all electronics would work, but would not restart. We replaced the 6th plug and all the wires and it will crank and not start. We listened for the fuel pump with ignition "ON" and you can hear it and clicking under hood. You smell fuel when trying to crank and spark plugs smell of gas. We ran the scanner tool and no codes are found. We tested the spark plugs and there is no fire to at least two of them. We have came to the conclusion it is either the crankshaft sensor or distributor. But My question is if it is the crankshaft, wouldn't we have received a code or could it be the ECU not giving it a code or the distributor rotor (cap looks brand new). Also, is there any way to test the distributor or crankshaft to narrow it down?
Do you
have the same problem?
Yes
No
Saturday, December 3rd, 2011 AT 5:40 PM

5 Replies

Tiny
RASMATAZ
  • MEMBER
When a crankshaft sensor goes bad it will not set a code. Here is a guide to help you see what you are in for when doing the job.

https://www.2carpros.com/articles/crankshaft-angle-sensor-replacement

Here is the location of the sensor which is on the top of the transmission bell housing.

Check out the diagrams (Below)

Please let us know what you find. We are interested to see what it is.

Cheers
Was this
answer
helpful?
Yes
No
+2
Saturday, December 3rd, 2011 AT 5:52 PM
Tiny
CDERRICK23
  • MEMBER
Yeah we have tested the spark plugs and there is no spark. We have turned the ignition and the fuel pump cuts on. The fuses are ok. We need to know how to test the coil on the distributor, cap, or crankshaft. We hooked the scanner and no codes are pulling. I will order the crankshaft sensor
Was this
answer
helpful?
Yes
No
Saturday, December 3rd, 2011 AT 6:10 PM
Tiny
RASMATAZ
  • MEMBER
The Crankshaft Position Sensor (OBD)On transmission housing, facing flywheel gear teeth. You will need to jack the car up

https://www.2carpros.com/articles/jack-up-and-lift-your-car-safely

Was this
answer
helpful?
Yes
No
Saturday, December 3rd, 2011 AT 6:22 PM
Tiny
CDERRICK23
  • MEMBER
It took a while but I got the sensor changed out and the engine started right up YA! Thanks for your help this site rocks!
Was this
answer
helpful?
Yes
No
Saturday, December 3rd, 2011 AT 6:43 PM
Tiny
RASMATAZ
  • MEMBER
Good to hear, please use 2CarPros anytime we are here to help.

Cheers
Was this
answer
helpful?
Yes
No
Sunday, December 4th, 2011 AT 12:00 AM

Please login or register to post a reply.

Recommended Guides