Cranks but will not start

Tiny
SHANNON WOODWARD
  • MEMBER
  • 1998 PLYMOUTH BREEZE
  • 2.1L
  • 4 CYL
  • FWD
  • 259 MILES
It tries to start, but it wont turn over. I have spark and fuel.
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Wednesday, July 27th, 2016 AT 1:51 PM

6 Replies

Tiny
WRENCHTECH
  • EXPERT
Turning over (cranking) and starting means two entirely different things.
Turning over (cranking) means the starter is cranking the engine. Starting means it begins running.

All "crank, no start" conditions are approached in the same way. Every engine requires certain functions to be able to run. Some of these functions rely on specific components to work and some components are part of more than one function so it is important to see the whole picture to be able to conclude anything about what may have failed. Also, these functions can only be tested during the failure. Any other time and they will simply test good because the problem is not present at the moment.
If you approach this in any other way, you are merely guessing and that only serves to replace unnecessary parts and wastes money.

Every engine requires spark, fuel and compression to run. That is what we have to look for.

These are the basics that need to be tested and will give us the info required to isolate a cause.

1) Test for spark at the plug end of the wire using a spark tester. If none found, check for power supply on the + terminal of the coil with the key on.

2) Test for injector pulse using a small bulb called a noid light. If none found, check for power supply at one side of the injector with the key on.

3) Use a fuel pressure gauge to test for correct fuel pressure, also noticing if the pressure holds when key is shut off.

4) If all of these things check good, then you would need to do a complete compression test.

Once you have determined which of these functions has dropped out,
you will know which system is having the problem.
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Wednesday, July 27th, 2016 AT 3:01 PM
Tiny
SHANNON WOODWARD
  • MEMBER
Sprayed starting fluid into air filter access, and car started. Any idea?
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Wednesday, July 27th, 2016 AT 3:52 PM
Tiny
WRENCHTECH
  • EXPERT
That narrows it down to fuel supply so you need to test fuel pressure and injector pulse next.
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+1
Wednesday, July 27th, 2016 AT 3:55 PM
Tiny
FREEMBA
  • EXPERT
Problem is lack of fuel. First, of course, check for obvious reasons such as out of gas.
Listen to see if the fuel pump is working when the key is turned on [do not start the engine]. Get in the car, close the doors and put on your seat belt so that there will be no chimes when you turn the key on, as the chimes may drown out the hum of the fuel pump running)
Next, check for the presence of fuel and fuel pressure at the fuel pressure access fitting (located at the center of the fuel rail, it looks like the air stem on a bicycle tube). You will need a fuel pressure gauge to accurately check for the amount for fuel pressure your car has. Sometimes these can be rented from your local auto parts store. Fuel pressure should be around 49 psi. Let me know what you find and I will be glad to assist further.
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Wednesday, July 27th, 2016 AT 4:10 PM
Tiny
SHANNON WOODWARD
  • MEMBER
No pressure. No hum from fuel pump. Going to replace pump and filter, see if that helps.
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Wednesday, July 27th, 2016 AT 8:00 PM
Tiny
WRENCHTECH
  • EXPERT
You really should test for power and ground arriving at the pump before condemning the pump. It will power for two seconds when the key is first turned on and again when the computer sees a cranking signal.
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Wednesday, July 27th, 2016 AT 8:02 PM

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