Engine is cranking but won't get fired

Tiny
TOMMYSCHIRMER
  • MEMBER
  • 2000 JEEP CHEROKEE
  • 150,000 MILES
My 2000 jeep Cherokee Sport has trouble starting. I can tell that it's a fuel problem but I need to know exactly where the problem is. When I turn the key the engine comes close to starting but won't turn over. After a few tries, the engine will turn over but it dies immediately unless I press on the gas a little bit. After this happens I can keep the car running by continuing to give it some gas, but it still will not idle and the rpms decrease until it dies. If I get the jeep started by giving it gas while the engine turns over and keep it running by consistently applying the gas for a few minutes, the jeep will continue running fine until I turn the engine off. After it has been driven for a while, I can turn it off and start it again without this problem occurring. I attempted to look at the fuel pressure, fuel filter and all of that stuff but I'm pretty sure that it is all located inside the gas tank on this model of jeep (2000 Cherokee sport 4x4). It also shows signs of electrical problems that seem to be related to the first problem. Sometimes the lights dim and the stereo turns off and on either while I am attempting to start the jeep or right as it is dying. Also, about 1 out of every 5 times I try to start it, there is a clicking sound after I try to start the car and fail. The clicking noise begins after the engine stops trying to turn over.
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Friday, September 23rd, 2011 AT 10:52 PM

6 Replies

Tiny
FIXITMR
  • MEMBER
How old is the battery? Have you checked for good corrosion free tight connections?
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Friday, September 23rd, 2011 AT 11:06 PM
Tiny
TINATASTIC
  • MEMBER
I'm having the exact same problem with my 96 Cherokee Sport. I've been having issues with my battery cables and had to clean them and readjust them to get my car to turn over on occasion. On Monday after a re-adjusting them, my car would turn over but them would stall out. I kept giving it some gas and then put it in drive and left for work. Had to adjust my cables a couple of times again and then Friday night it happened again where it stalled gave it gas for about a minute put it into gear and took off. Now I have a Check Engine Light that I am going to get read tomorrow, hopefully I can get it to Autozone.
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Saturday, September 24th, 2011 AT 6:53 AM
Tiny
TOMMYSCHIRMER
  • MEMBER
My battery is in pretty good shape, less than a year old. At first I thought this was a battery problem, but I cleaned the terminals throughly, replaced the screws and nuts, and re-connected the battery very tight. After this, I noticed that without the car running, the headlights, radio, and all of the other electrical functions of the car worked fine. The engine comes close to turning over when I try to start it, and when I give it a little bit of gas it catches and starts up. But once it starts, it will attempt to idle at about 400 rpms and eventually die, unless I rev the engine. Once I rev the engine a couple times and lightly push on the gas for about a minute, the car seems to recover and will idle Normally at about 1000 rpms. This is what makes me think there may be a clog in the fuel line or something? Or maybe a bad fuel filter or a sensor?
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Saturday, September 24th, 2011 AT 5:56 PM
Tiny
FIXITMR
  • MEMBER
No cel maybe get codes read anyway? IAC is idle control. TPS is fuel control. You could have pressure gauge attached when you go thru process of starting see what happens to pressure. If I runs ok once going the filter is ok. Maybe MAF sensor needs cleaning.
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Saturday, September 24th, 2011 AT 6:38 PM
Tiny
TOMMYSCHIRMER
  • MEMBER
Today I was preparing to test the jeep with the pressure gague, but now it will not start or turn over at all. When I turn the key halfway, some of the electrical comes on, such as the dash lights, but the radio doesnt turn on. When I try to start the car, there is a fast and continuous "clicking" sound. No other sounds can be heard from the engine, and it doesnt even begin to turn over. Some lights still come on inside the jeep which leads me to believe that it is not a battery problem. Could it be the alternator?
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Sunday, September 25th, 2011 AT 6:43 PM
Tiny
FIXITMR
  • MEMBER
Usually the starter solenoid does the rapid clicking. Usually from NOT enough current flowing LIKE a bad connection. That sounds like a weak battery if it is clicking. As far as the lights dimming when it stalls, that is normal because the alternator isn't producing power any longer. As far as the idle issue, a weak battery or bad connection can cause it. Check to make sure the battery terminals are clean and tight. Also, check to make sure the main ground from the battery to the engine block is clean and tight. If the problem continues, have the idle air control valve checked and check for vacuum leaks. Both will cause a bad idle and stalling.
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Tuesday, September 27th, 2011 AT 1:19 AM

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