1979 Volkswagen Beetle won't start -- strange sound

Tiny
RONDON
  • MEMBER
  • 1979 VOLKSWAGEN BEETLE
  • 4 CYL
  • 2WD
  • MANUAL
  • 15,000 MILES
A real MYSTERY!
This engine has operated well DAILY for the 15,000 miles I put on it since I bought it. Last week s sound like a small electric motor was heard while it was parked, ignition switch off. Could not find the source of the problem. Next morning battery was dead. Jump-start was successful and easy. Drove it 60 miles and parked it. Same sound again, MAYBE coming from bottom of engine, but still not sure. Next day, dead battery. Jump-start unsuccessful. Engine cranks, but will not fire. The FIRST time I clicked the starter, the engine made a very small "puff" sound like as if it fired, but that was the LAST TIME it has ever started!
Engine was rebuilt a year ago in a different state. Not much luck with VW mechanics or interested peresons with the proper tools here.

Please HELP!

RON
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Monday, August 25th, 2008 AT 3:35 PM

2 Replies

Tiny
MHPAUTOS
  • EXPERT
Hi there,

Thank you for the donation,

There is no electric motor on ore near the engine, (normally) there may be an after market electric fuel pump fitted, thats a about all I can think of there, as for the non start, check for fuel at the carby and check for 12V at the Pos side of the coil, take the lead out of the distributor (coil ) and check for spark when cranking. You should have a hot blue spark, it should fore with an audible crack as it fires. Check these and report back your findings.

Mark (mhpautos)
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Tuesday, August 26th, 2008 AT 1:18 AM
Tiny
JALOPYPAPA
  • MEMBER
I believe this car has an anti-diesel shutoff solenoid on the carburetor. I'm wondering if it's sticking. Look for an electrical connection to a thing screwed into the carburetor throat. Remove the valve, ground the housing and and check that the valve seat moves when you turn the key. If you leave it off and plug the hole, the worst that will happen is that the engine will diesel (keep chugging a bit after you turn the key off).

I think it's the only electrical connection on the carburetor other than the choke, which is on the side up near the top of the carburetor, and which is what I first thought of until I remembered the shutoff valve.
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Friday, August 29th, 2008 AT 11:42 AM

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