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Car has a hard time starting


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megatalker93
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May 16, 2010, 10:52 PM

Post #1 of 17 (4121 views)
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I have a 1994 Chevrolet Beretta with a 2.2l engine. Ever since I bought the car 4 months ago I've had a hard time getting it to start with the engine cold. It doesn't matter what kind of day it is if the engine hasn't been run for more than 3 hours it will have a hard time starting. It's even worse on wet days, but it will start. To get it to start I have to hold the gas pedal to the floor for about 10 seconds and then it will finally start and the engine will stutter for about a minute while it's jumping around in the engine compartment. After that it chills out and runs like brand new. I don't really know what to think about it. As far as engine repairs I have replaced the fuel pump, fuel filter, catalytic converter, head gasket, and it has new spark plugs and the right 5W-30 oil in it. What could be causing this issue? Before I bought the car the previous owners let it sit outside for a couple years so I don't know what could have possibly gone wrong in that time. This is truly irritating and I'm afraid that it will just fail to start one day. Could it be something electronic or would it have something to do with the fuel system? Any suggestions? I have a very limited supply of money so I can't be spending a ton on having it tested at a dealer or anything.


nickwarner
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May 16, 2010, 11:51 PM

Post #2 of 17 (4118 views)
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You say you replaced the plugs, but no mention of wires. They might be a problem. When you pull them off look for rust on the coil pack terminals. When the boots of the wires get bad they allow moisture to get at the terminals and the rust will give you a bad spark quality.


megatalker93
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May 17, 2010, 5:45 PM

Post #3 of 17 (4110 views)
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I checked the wires over when I replaced the head gasket. Everything looked good. As far as this car goes there's very little rust or corrosion on anything really. I was reading online and was wondering if there was a sensor or something that could be bad. There were a few mentions of a MAP sensor and an Oxygen sensor. Any ideas?


megatalker93
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Jul 11, 2010, 4:55 PM

Post #4 of 17 (4057 views)
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I replaced the wires again, just to be safe. The car now starts well on wet days, but still has trouble if it's been sitting for awhile. The engine will start just fine, but it'll stutter for about 20 seconds as if it wants to die. The same thing happens if I start it and only let it run for a minute or so, then start it again. The engine will stutter and then die causing me to have to restart it. At that point it won't start unless I press the gas pedal all the way to the floor. I read somewhere online that this could have something to do with leaky injectors or injector o-rings... Is there a way to diagnose that without pulling off the fuel rail?


mikesheldon
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Jul 12, 2010, 12:57 AM

Post #5 of 17 (4051 views)
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I think the is still a problem with your fuel pump or spark plug .This is normal problem which any car faces after 5-6 years. If the cars will not get any fuel before igniotiuon the cars will not start and also look out the moisture on the spark plug because it also causes major ignition problems.

(This post was edited by Hammer Time on Jul 24, 2010, 8:06 AM)


Hammer Time
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Jul 12, 2010, 5:58 AM

Post #6 of 17 (4046 views)
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Quote
I think the is still a problem with your fuel pump or spark plug .This is normal problem which any car faces after 5-6 years. If the cars will not get any fuel before igniotiuon the cars will not start and also look out the moisture on the spark plug because it also causes major ignition problems.


This will be the third time I have asked you to refrain from giving advice on subjects you have no knowledge in.




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megatalker93
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Jul 12, 2010, 11:51 AM

Post #7 of 17 (4037 views)
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ok, well does anybody have some REAL advice about this? I want to fix the car before everything is replaced in it. Is there any sensors I should replace or does someone recommend a cheap additive for gas that I can use to clean the engine out or something? I know for a fact that the intake on that car is pretty dirty due to the previous owner running it without an air filter, but after running several cans of injector cleaner through it and cleaning all the sensors I thought I'd be ok.


Hammer Time
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Jul 12, 2010, 5:49 PM

Post #8 of 17 (4026 views)
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There is no such thing as "Mechanic in a Can". You can't fix a problem with additives. Most of them are just snake oil and many do more harm than good. Injector cleaner is fine as a preventative but nothing but a profession pressure cleaning is going to clean a dirty injector. I would start out checking the fuel pressure in the morning while your trying to start it. Being even a little low would give you symptoms like that. A bad vacuum leak will too.




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megatalker93
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Jul 12, 2010, 8:16 PM

Post #9 of 17 (4022 views)
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It does it any time of the day... even when I drove it to South Dakota and it sat in the sun all day in 102 degree weather when I went to start it in the afternoon after not running for 4 hours it does the same thing... rough idle for about 20-30 seconds then it levels out and runs perfectly.


Hammer Time
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Jul 12, 2010, 8:42 PM

Post #10 of 17 (4018 views)
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It doesn't matter, same answer

You may end up having dirty injectors as you suspect but you have to see what the fuel pressure is during the failure first.




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megatalker93
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Jul 12, 2010, 9:49 PM

Post #11 of 17 (4014 views)
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I checked the fuel pressure... it's fine... it actually doesn't change between when the engine is stuttering and when it's running like it should. As far as vacuum leaks, what is the best way to check for them? I know I have a good vacuum on every one of the lines, but if there is a small vacuum leak how could I find it? Are you sure that none of the sensors could cause something like this?


Hammer Time
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Jul 12, 2010, 9:51 PM

Post #12 of 17 (4011 views)
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What is the fuel pressure?




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megatalker93
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Jul 12, 2010, 10:17 PM

Post #13 of 17 (4007 views)
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I checked it where it said to check it in the Chilton book and it was about 8.5psi and the Chilton book said between 7-9psi for that engine... so I would assume I'm good? It is a brand new pump and filter so I would assume it's ok...


Hammer Time
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Jul 12, 2010, 10:20 PM

Post #14 of 17 (4004 views)
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No way..........
The spec for that engine is 40.5 to 47.0 psi (key on, engine off) 3 to 10 PSI less when running.




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We offer help in answering questions, clarifying things or giving advice but we are not a substitute for an on-site inspection by a professional.



(This post was edited by Hammer Time on Jul 12, 2010, 10:21 PM)


megatalker93
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Jul 13, 2010, 2:16 AM

Post #15 of 17 (3998 views)
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That's what the Chilton book said... at least where I was supposed to be checking it... It's a low pressure system. That's even what the specs said on the original fuel pump when I pulled it out. Unless I'm supposed to check it inside the engine at the injectors or something that's what it says.


megatalker93
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Jul 13, 2010, 2:24 AM

Post #16 of 17 (3997 views)
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I've decided I'm just going to live with it... I'm sick of replacing things that don't need to be replaced! I've been dealing with this issue since I bought the car last November I'm sure I can deal with it until it completely dies. Obviously NOBODY knows what's wrong with it and I have a VERY limited supply of money to even bother to try and figure it out.


Hammer Time
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Jul 13, 2010, 5:24 AM

Post #17 of 17 (3993 views)
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No, if you gave me the right info on the car, then I gave you the right fuel pressure spec. Low pressure systems are for TBI systems. Your engine should be ported injection as determined by it having 4 injectors.




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We offer help in answering questions, clarifying things or giving advice but we are not a substitute for an on-site inspection by a professional.





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