Engine turns over but won't start
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  1. #1
    AVH
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    Engine turns over but won't start

    Four times over the last few weeks my 1.8t has been hard to start. It sounds fine while it's turning over, but just won't catch. When I give it some gas, it starts, but this is after it's been turning over for a while.

    Every time it's happened a couple hours after I've taken a short trip.

    I suspect the battery. Could a bad battery turn the engine over, but not get it to start?

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  3. #2
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    its not battery, if the battery was dead, your car would have hard time or would not turn over at all

    most likely cause would be a coolent sensor, if you say that its after taking a trip (cheap fix, should be under $15)

    if not
    I would suspect fuel delivery (fuel pump, cluged filter, dirty injectors) or ignition, (spark plugs, coil packs), does your car start at all?, dispays a CEL? ... did you have any issues before hand (misfires, loss of power?)

    also, could you give more info? what year an how many miles?

    btw... which part of SJ are you from?

  4. #3
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    Funny, I've had a similar problem just recently. My car is at the shop now. I have a 2001.5 Variant V6-Tip with just under 20,000 miles (wife never drives!)

    Started it up on Sunday and it was really rough, felt like a mis-fire and I thought it was going to stall. It didn't and I drove it. CEL comes on and stays on. Of course, I have my first DMV inspection this month and they won't even look at the car if the CEL is on!

    Take it in. Diag says misfire and they want to replace the ignition coil, coolant temp sensor, plugs, and clean the intake manifold/throttle body. Plus clean the air filter area (for $200!!!).

    I agreed to ignition coil and sensor. Plugs I can do myself, cleaning throttle body probably isn't necessary, and forget the air filter "cleaning"!

    But I still have the feeling I'm being had. . .

  5. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by SausageRocket
    its not battery, if the battery was dead, your car would have hard time or would not turn over at all

    most likely cause would be a coolent sensor, if you say that its after taking a trip (cheap fix, should be under $15)
    I would try the coolant sensor first. I had very similar starting problems and they were always after a short trip. I replaced this part and the problem has gone away. Besides at $15 it is pretty cheap.

    BTW, what year car do you have? Mine is a '99 AEB.

  6. #5
    AVH
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    I've got a 98 AEB.

    I live in Almaden and work in Milpitas

  7. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by AVH
    Every time it's happened a couple hours after I've taken a short trip.
    When you say "short trip" - just how far are we talking? 1 mile, 1 block, etc.?
    I've had the 1.8T and now the V6 engine. If I would just back the car out of the garage and turn off the engine, I was almost certain to have trouble starting the car after that. For whatever reason, both of these engines do not like to be started and turned off without running for at least a minute or two. So, I try to remember to let my engine idle for a couple of minutes, even if I just need to move the car a very short distance. This has been brought up before by others so it's not an isolated incident. On the other hand, if you're version of a 'short trip' is a 5 minute/2 mile trek, you're probably not dealing with the same issue.

  8. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by GWillikers
    If I would just back the car out of the garage and turn off the engine, I was almost certain to have trouble starting the car after that.
    This was my exact situation(V6). Could that have caused a misfire code (MIL light on) and enough damage to warrant replacement of the ignition coil?

  9. #8
    AVH
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    My problems have been after I run a quick 1 mile or so errand during lunch. The starting problem comes later in the evening before the commute home. So far it's always started, eventually.

    Why can't it not start at home so at least I'm not stuck at work?

    I figured out the type of temp sensor that I need. I'll order that tonight.

    Thanks

  10. #9
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    make sure you get the updated version, I think it was the green one that replaced the black one but it might be the reverse. If you have the blue one, then get another blue one. I had the same problem with my 99 AEB, it would also start revving higher at idle, like go to 2300-2500 rpm when I had the car in neutral (5 speed) and was really hard to start sometimes.

  11. #10
    AVH
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    The new coolant temp sensor seems to have cured my warm start problems.

    Thanks for the tips!

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