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Thread: No start problem

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    41

    No start problem

    Hi
    All the sudden, my 89 SC won't start. I tried to start one morning for work, and it cranked over, gave a little life of start, then just didn't do anything. I turned the key for a little, tried giving it more gas, and everything, still wouldn't start. All it does now is turn over and turn over. I can hear the fuel pump come on, so i know it isn't gas related. I didn't check for spark yet, but am this afternoon. The check engine light isn't on and I didn't check for codes yet because I don't know how if the car won't even start and I dont' have an engine code reader thing.

    Anyone have any idea as to what it would be? Is there anything common on these cars like a fuse or relay that craps out alot? I disconnected the battery and tried it again, still nothing. It wont' even show any life or starting. All the accessories work, so I was thinking it had to be ignition/spark related.

    Any ideas or helpful tricks?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    Canton (Atlanta area) GA
    Posts
    1,089

    Crank sensor? Maybe Cam Sensor?

    Check to see if the upshift arrow is lit during cranking. If so, the crank sensor is bad. Check the balancer to make sure it isn't broke as well. If the arrow isn't on, then the cam sensor may be toast. Try cranking the engine three or four times and see if it catches. A bad cam sensor will let you fire the engine when bad, but it is like "russian roulette" as to when it will line up correctly. (The computer is trying a random pattern to find TDC.)

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    41
    nothing is lit up when I crank the engine
    of course, I'm not sure where to look, is it a clear light or what?
    ill check the balancer and see how it looks
    thanks for the heads up, Justin

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    41
    well i got a code reader tool, didn't pull any codes

    i sprayed starting fluid in the TB, and it seemed to show a small, small sign of life, kinda just sounded like it revved faster when i sprayed that and had the gas to the floor, but still nothing

    i did see the upshift light on as i was trying to start it and it stayed on the entire time, it didn't flash or anything...would this mean the crank sensor is bad?
    i bought a crank sensor and cam sensor and am going to try to replace the crank sensor tomorrow

    anything special i needto know about it's installation? I read the directions in the Haynes book, it sounds pretty hectic as far as lining stuff up and keep the same gap on things, ~~~...

    my question is too: wouldn't a bad sensor, like the crank or cam, trigger the check engine light to come on of course, i guess the car has to be running for the check engine light to come on and woulnd't a bad sensor pull a code for it too?
    Last edited by gerber1125; 05-15-2006 at 10:25 PM.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Los Angeles, CA
    Posts
    19
    Hi, I just went thru similar no start problem with my 90SC. Just my advice you should really check for spark first at least on 4,5,6 and make sure it is firing normal and your fuel pressure. I just went thru replacing all sensors, dis, fuel pump, plugs and wires trying to diagnose a no start that suddenly happend and it ended up being my EEC. Basic symptoms I had was very eratic strong spark, and very low fuel pressure but if I jumped the pump it built up fuel pressure just fine. Code reader was a waste just kept giving me pass codes and going thru the self test like normal but EEC was fried. All I got to say is SIA Electronics solved my problem and made my car run like new for about $100. So like I said check for spark and fuel before you end up spending hundreds of dollars and a lot of downtime. Peace.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    Canton (Atlanta area) GA
    Posts
    1,089

    Crankshaft Position Sensor for sure...

    If the upshift arrow (amber indicator on the instrument panel shaped like an arrow pointing upward) stays on while cranking, your crank sensor is not functioning. It could be the sensor, or the hall-effect vanes on the back of the balancer are not aligned properly (because of a broken balancer).

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    41
    thanks for the info
    ill try changing the crankshaft sensor first, hopefully that fixes the problem
    are they hard to install, do i need any special tools or anything? Anything I need to line up as I change it, or is it just a simple swap?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    Canton (Atlanta area) GA
    Posts
    1,089

    This repair can be challenging...

    Here's a link for starters: http://www.sccoa.com/articles/crankshaftsensor.php
    Get a good manual and do some searching on this site for tips and pointers. If you don't have a good (basic) set of mechanics tools, you may want to get some help. But, if you take your time, document what you remove so that you can get it back in the right place, you can do this...

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Los Angeles, CA
    Posts
    19
    My upshift light stayed even after swapping to new one but if you would like to change it anyway for peace of mind you will need a 5.5mm ignition wrench, 15/16" deep socket I believe for turning the balancer you should check though if you have to buy first its been a little while, 18mm socket, 6" extension, 2ft breaker bar but its not a necessity. That should be all the tools you need. So far as changing it has to be exact take my advice. First disconnect both battery cables, remove belts, remove jackshaft tensioner, remove black plastic balance cover if you still have yours, then you need turn the crank so that the sensor sits in the free space in between the vanes. Then jack car up as high as you can and put on jack stands. Next remove 5.5mm screws holding sensor. Be careful they fall and get lost easy and it is very important for either the same length or slightly shorter screw to be used when you reinstall. Now you have it off, put the new one on but dont tighten the screws all the way. Next turn the balancer so that one of the vanes is directly in the center of the sensor because they are curved and it needs to clear at it highest arc or it will hit. This is what i used to set my sensor gap because it was more rigid and durable than carboard. I used some 8" strips from some old plastic blinds works perfect. So what you do is slide one in between the bottom of the sensor ring and sensor and one on the top. Slide them back and forth a little to get them sliding thru real easy and this will set the gap. Do not remove them until you have finished. Then tighten the sensor down. If you have it lined up right the plastic or carboard strips should come out pretty easy. Now put everything back together and your good to go. I have read many different ways of doing this and most are much harder but this is what worked for me and I can do it in less than a hour including set up now and I got a speeding ticket in my SC this morning to prove that it works. Oh well.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    41
    hey thanks for the tips guys, im gonna try it next week when i have time

    my question is, wouldn't the bad sensor show up on the code scanner i used for the KOEO test? i hooked up the reader and no codes came up, which was odd to me because, if a sensor broke, woudln't that trigger the computer to make a fault code for it??

    thanks, Justin

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    41
    where do i get this 5.5mm ignition wrench?? are they at napa or carquest

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