Non starter suddenly

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Big_Andy
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Non starter suddenly

Post by Big_Andy » Tue May 21, 2019 9:22 am

Hi all

So last Wednesday I replaced my (very dirty) paper air filter with a K&N panel filter. Because of the slack in wires, I didn't unclip the MAF sensor wire, I simply undid the 4 screws, lifted the lid, pulled the old filter out and put the new one in. I made sure the new filter sat correctly, and screwed the top back down. I say screwed it down, but it looks like I'm going to have to squirt some Araldite down the holes and drill and tap as they're damaged and not holding tightly.

Any way, I went to start the car to check everything was fine, and now it's not starting. It cranks, but it doesn't fire, almost like there's no fuel or spark. I can smell petrol after cranking for about 30 secs, although I can't positively say I can hear the pump starting.

The car has sat several months whilst I've done repairs towards the MOT, but I gave it a short run to check the ABS after putting 2 new sensors on the front, and I started the car the day before to straighten the car ready for putting the headlights back in and aligning them.

I have FORscan software and have checked the MAF readings to see if I've damaged the wiring, but it seems to be working as far as I can tell (I'm new to ECU working, but have years of playing with old style cars in motorsport). I've worked logically through what I think is obvious (Fuses, connectors), I've even sprayed electrical contact cleaner into the connectors for the MAF, but I'm at a total loss where to go from here.

Thanks in advance for any help
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Non starter suddenly

Post by red » Tue May 21, 2019 11:38 am

Have you checked the fuel cut off in the passenger foot well?

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Non starter suddenly

Post by grogee » Tue May 21, 2019 2:10 pm

Also might be opposite problem - if it's only been used for very short runs it might be flooded? Take fuel pump fuse out and crank it for a while...
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Non starter suddenly

Post by Big_Andy » Tue May 21, 2019 6:05 pm

Checked fuel cut off as my first thought (should have mentioned that) because the trim is out to get to the OBD port.

I don't think it could be flooding as I never blip the throttle when I turn the engine off, and any normal use any petrol in the cylinders would evaporate where the valves are open.

When I next get chance, I'm going to pull the plugs and check them, and check for a spark. Also starting a project post soon, when I get a minute (I'm a carer for my disabled wife and have an autistic son (13) and daughter (12) to look after as well as all the housework, no garage, so I work on it when I can.
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Non starter suddenly

Post by red » Tue May 21, 2019 9:36 pm

Sounds like a logical next step.
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Non starter suddenly

Post by grogee » Wed May 22, 2019 3:26 pm

Any joy? Hope it's something simple. Might be worth trying a different key, just for the hell of it.
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Non starter suddenly

Post by Big_Andy » Wed May 22, 2019 9:36 pm

Only just got 30 minutes on her tonight, and most of that was jacking her up to take the front wheels off to get new Rainsports on in the next couple of days. Re checked the fuses under the bonnet and found the fuel pump fuse had blown. Swapped it with one of the dipped beam fuses (lights currently out if car) but it still won't start (nor can I hear the pump priming). Swapped the main beam and fuel pump relays around to no avail, but battery needs another charge up with all the cranking I was doing.

I'll check again tomorrow once the battery is charged, but an now wondering if the fuel pump is (coincidentally) dead. No inspection panel under the back seat, so I can't easily get to the pump to run it off a second battery to test. Hmmmm, good design there Ford.
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Non starter suddenly

Post by grogee » Thu May 23, 2019 7:13 am

Yes I mistakenly sent someone looking under the rear seat to get to the fuel pump/sender assembly... got to drop the tank. Well look on the bright side, if you do drop it you can put in a bit more rustproofing while it's off...
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Post by XAF » Thu May 23, 2019 8:23 am

If it’s blowing fuses, it’s the pump 100%.

You can do a quick and temporary bodge which worked on mine and that was to put a 30 amp fuse in. It was enough to get the car to the garage and drop the tank. I can’t say I recommend it though as there could be unintended consequences!
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Post by Big_Andy » Thu May 23, 2019 8:18 pm

Well, it didn't start with a freshly charged battery. Also the new led brake/side bulbs are a bust as they're not earthing. No time for anything else tonight.

<edit> I have a k11 Micra I'm scrapping, so I'm planning taking the rear tank cover and making a template up from the body. If it wasn't a big job, I'd also put the plastic tank in too.
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Post by DOH » Fri May 31, 2019 9:25 am

A useful tip to try.
With a good fully charged battery remove the air intake hose to the throttle body or the maf(which ever is easier). Then spray carb cleaner into the throttle body & crank over .This will help clean off the spark plugs, without the need to remove them (as they can break doing that).
Puma's are notorious for flooding the plugs if they are switched off before the engine has reached normal temperature and covered eg 3 miles or so.

If you can then get the pump to buzz on key switch on, the car hopefully will start for you again
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Non starter suddenly

Post by Big_Andy » Fri Jun 07, 2019 2:03 am

Well, a quick, and not so happy update (for me). My mother went into hospital after a minor fall on Friday 24th May, and what little time I have spare has been spent visiting her. She had a CT scan as part of a minor op she was due to have last Wednesday. The l.p. was to insert a camera through the bladder to check the tubes between the kidneys and the bladder. Unfortunately, the right tube was blocked by a tumour, which they can't operate on because of her age (83). The CT scan has also shown a shadow on her right lung and nodules in the centre of the chest. Although they are hoping to take a biopsy when she's well enough, I'm having to accept that she's not well, and she may not have long to live.

But I have had some time to work, and after waiting on fuses, I blew another fuel pump fuse. Putting a 30A fuse in to try and get the pump working, I still didn't hear the pump. So I started looking towards dropping the tank, and noticed that there is some damage to the sheath that would be under the seat. Note that I say 'would be' as I removed the seats last year along with the carpets etc for autotesting. Then I had a think of what's gone into the rear since then like the high back bucket seats and the new wheels I bought in February coming home from a weekend away with the wife (she is very understanding). I think what I might have done is pinch the wires going into the grommet out to the tank. Need to get the tank down and the multimeter on to the wiring.

I also did something similar to what DOH has suggested, but with WD40 (how I used to have to start my old 125 years back). Nothing. I'll get some carb cleaner tomorrow and try when I get chance, but I have a rally in Kielder to marshal on Saturday, and a local Autotest on Sunday.

I'll write more when I get chance to work.
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Non starter suddenly

Post by red » Fri Jun 07, 2019 8:26 am

Sorry to hear the news of your mum there Andy.

It sounds like you could be on to something with the wiring, good luck with dropping the tank and testing.
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Post by DOH » Sat Jun 08, 2019 7:16 pm

Hi Andy 1) Wishing your mum the best possible outcome.
2) Although WD40 has paraffin in it which is ignitable, it is nowhere as good as using carb cleaner for cleaning spark plugs because it will leave an oil residue on them .Btw, Toolstation did do it but they seemed to had difficulties with supplies of it recently so check stock availability before going to the store.
3) Before dropping the fuel tank.As the exposed to damage wires are likely to be the culprit, remove the grommet from the floor. If it won't budge you can put 1 cut in it to help you using e.g. a Stanley knife. then lever out with a flat screw driver . Then iirc strip back the outer black tape to expose the wires . If your lucky you may see the physical damage and also a burn mark where it is shorting out, or a flattened wire, bare the damaged area and solder if required &/or re tape the damaged insulation.
If you have no joy there then drop the tank.
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Non starter suddenly

Post by Clueless steve » Sun Jun 30, 2019 12:43 pm

Hello all first time on this site so here goes,after parking up my Puma for well over a year the mot had run out and I acquired another ford so I put my beloved puma at the bottom of the drive and left it there awhile as usual with most pumas the wheel arches had rotted a bit so I decided to check under the seats and arches for any more rot .Good news,clean as a whistle so yesterday decided to go ahead with PROJECT PUMA. The little sod won’t start so did all the usual things like plugs listening for pump etc , even resolved to ( I know I shouldn’t have) squirting a blast of easy start down the air inlet and it fired a bit ,so we have ignition Houston.Eventually found what I think is the fuse 10 amp under bonnet at the back and yes it was blown , so as you do swapped it for headlight fuse . Yes it blew that on as well .So going to take back seat out to check any damaged wires .question,how easy is it to get to the fuel pump and check it out???
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Non starter suddenly

Post by red » Sun Jun 30, 2019 2:39 pm

Welcome!

Not as easy as you might want it to be, you need to drop the fuel tank because it's inside and there's no panel under the rear seats etc.

Did you use clean fuel? Might also be wort looking at the fuel filter which is about halfway down underneath the car.
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Post by Clueless steve » Sun Jun 30, 2019 6:32 pm

Thanks for your quick response,I’ve had a look under back seat and it looks fine no visible damaged wiring ,need to get it on some ramps and lower / remove tank. No I didn’t put clean fuel in tank before I attempted to start it tWhat do you think the chance is that with it being stood so long that the muck and dirt in the tank has completely blocked the pump and caused a dead short in the motor ?
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Post by red » Mon Jul 01, 2019 8:35 am

There's quite a few reports of similar issues arising after having been stood for a period of time.

I might be tempted to add some fresh fuel and replace the fuel filter first (just because it's easier)
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Non starter suddenly

Post by Big_Andy » Fri Aug 30, 2019 9:06 pm

Well, finally got around to working on the car, and managed to drop the tank. The pump's knackered, so the answer is found. Using a generic replacement pump off eBay for £24, so we'll see how that goes.
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