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Discussion Starter #1
Hi all,
I have a 2002 ZTS with a weird problem... A few days ago my car started fine, but then shut off as i was backing out of a parking space. Then it happened again a few days later under similar conditions just after i had staarted it. I have had trouble starting it in the past few days and i figured it was the battery as it's getting cold up here. Today, i couldnt start the car at all, but the engine would crank. I got a jumpstart and the car ran fine. I figured it was a battery and replaced the battery. Now the car will crank but not start. I can hear the fuel pump stir as i turn the key. The car seems less likely to star the longer i wait since the last time it ran, but again, i replaced the battery with no luck.

Any help?

Thanks,
Joe

PS, i thought this may be a sparkplug issue, but dont know if that could be a cause for the car (once on) shutting off randomly. Also, how would jump-starting the car help to start it if the battery is not the issue?
 

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JoeH

Have you gotten a check engine light? Have you check your wires? Have you check you ignition coil? I myself am stumped with this issue because I'm having almost the same problem.
Let me know if you get this problem fix. We might have the same problem and we might come across something that we overlook. Keep us updated

Thanks[wrenchin]
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I think i did have a check engine - unfortunatly i unplugged the battery so it reset everything, including the codes. I should have checked those first. Im going to try replacing the spark plugs and wires tonight.
 

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troufleshooting
4 Engine hard to start when cold
1battery discharged or low

2 fault in fuel or electrical systems

5 Engine rotates but will not start
1fuel tank empty

2fault in fuel injection system

3battery discharged (check operation of battery components

4battery terminal connections loose or cooroded

5FUEL PUMP inertioa switch disabled fuel pump faulty

6 excessive moisture on or ,damage to, ignition components

7 worn faulty or incorrestly gapped spark plugs

8 broken, loose or disconnected wireing in the starting circuit (very unlikely)
9 broken , loose or disconnected wires at the ignition coil or faulty coil.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Got it started yesterday by replacing fuel pump fuse but had to jump it since the battery had worn down with all the attempts. Drove it around for a while but it ran pretty rough. Turned it off and on a few times to make sure. This morning, it wont start again. It cranks, but wont turn over. Fuel pump fuse is fine. The battery wore down in just a few minutes (i assume it had a low charge since i only drove it about an hour the day before).
Could this still be a battery issue and i just happened to blow the fule pump fuse when installing the new battery which, since it still wouldnt start, led me to believe it was not the battery? Im leaning toward fuel pump - will check to see if i can hear it tonight.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Got it started with a jump again. So i put in a new battery again and it started fine several times over the course of a few hours. I can hear the fuel pump turn on each time i start the car. The car shut off while driving at low speed again, this time it had been on for about 30 minutes before shutting off. I don't get any error codes on by OBDII - could this be a clogged fuel filter (just read the sticky about it). I'm afraid its the fuel pump but it doesn't make sense that the car has trouble starting cold but not hot (if it were the fuel pump, i would think it would be the opposite?). Any help???

Thanks,

Joe
 

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Have you had a complete charging system test, i.e. checked to make sure the alternator is supplying enough power? That may be why your battery keeps tanking.

When's the last time the fuel filter was changed? I would definitely check the fuel filter out before thinking it's the fuel pump. When you have the car on a freeway or something, does it ever feel sluggish like it needs more fuel?

There's a TSB out:

05-9-16 MAY 05 Engine Controls - Long Cranking Time/Hard Start

However, I don't have access to it, so I really don't know if this one will help. I just pulled the title from alldatadiy.com. Need to subscribe to get the full version.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I started it this morning but i had to hit the gas hard to do so and had to keep it above idle to keep it alive. When i let it idle, it died within 15 seconds. I then had trouble restarting it. I could not hear the fuel pump when first starting it this morning, but after i got it started and it stalled, i heard the fule pump again. Couldnt get it started after this though.
The battery was fine, and im not sure what other electrical systems need to be maintained as the car is on, but that could be it. The car only stalls when at low speeds. It has been starting fine in the afternoon as the air temp warms up (it gets below freezing at night).

Heres what i consider the facts:

If it is an electrical problem, it does not involve my battery (new battery, works fine) and is affected by the overnight cold air temps or 7 hours of inactivity (doesnt sound electrical to me unless condensation buildup causes a short somewhere?)

My gas tank is full and i added premium fuel and STP gas treatment yesterday to try to fix any water in the gas/line.

Need to step hard on the gas to start, and can keep it at 3k-4k rpm no problem - after stalling though, cant get it to start again easily, even stepping on the gas.

If it's the fuel pump, then it is intermittent and it more affected when the pump is cold than hot - car seems to have little/no trouble with hot starts.


I'm going to take it in for a new fuel filter tonight if i can get it started and ask them to check the electrical system. I dont think the fuel filter has been changed since i bought it 2 years ago (and who knows how long before that). I live in VA and i believe they do use 10% ethonol in many gas stations here - heard that could be a source of clogs.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Forgot to mention - after the car stalls, if i try to turn the key, nothing happens (except a bunch of lights on my dash including the engine light and a Check Gas Cap light). I can not get car to crank for about a minute, then it will crank again but not necessarily turn over.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
oh also, even though i eventually heard the fuel pump today (after the first start and stall) it was much more faint than yesterday. Could barely hear it sometimes.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I think ive solved this - Initially, the car would stall as i was driving. Then it refused to start... a jump worked, but the car stalled again later... I think it was a loose ground wire to the battery caused by engine vibration. I changed the battery not knowing this when the car refused to start. In the process, i blew a fuse on the fuel pump causing more confusion since the car still would not start. Replaced the fuse and car started but died... Finally cleaned corrosion off ground wire to battery and tightened it up a bit, has been starting up fine since.
 
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