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Old 12-11-2014, 11:16 PM   #1
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Default 2002 SC2 Cranks but won't start

Haven't been on here in a while but, I have a question. There's a 2002 SC2 for sale I'm looking at and it won't start. The kid that owns it said he was just driving down the road and it stalled and hasn't started since. My first thought was CPS but, it's getting spark. I've seen it and it cranks fine but, doesn't start. He didn't tell me the SES light was on before I went there because it's been on since he got the car. Unfortunately I didn't have my code reader with me.

He's had it to a couple mechanics look at it. The first one didn't know what the problem was but, that it was getting spark and had compression. The second said it was the timing chain. The thing is anything I can think of that would throw the chain off enough to stop the car would have been making all kinds of racket. I asked about that and he said no. Besides if it was timing chain, you wouldn't be able get reasonable compression readings.

Nothing really sounds right. Fuel pressure maybe? What else?

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Old 12-11-2014, 11:56 PM   #2
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Default Re: 2002 SC2 Cranks but won't start

An engine needs three things to run, FUEL, COMPRESSION, SPARK, one of those is missing on that car, If the chain jumped time compression would be low and bent valves would be a result, Compression test, and fuel pressure test needs to be done if you know for sure it indeed has spark.

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Old 12-12-2014, 12:10 AM   #3
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Default Re: 2002 SC2 Cranks but won't start

My moms SL1 had a similar issue a few years back. it stalled out when i was trying to get it out of the drive and we had spark but it wouldnt go. we had to have the car towed to our mechanic who determined the problem to be that the injectors were nearly solid with carbon built up. the pieces he pulled out were solid. so after a good cleaning and an Italian Tune Up, the car started up flawless. About two years later, right before im ready to start another semster at college, im driving and the car stalls on me (this is an AT car), i have to crank the car a few times to get it to start. am able to get it home and trying to start it, it starts and then keeps conking out. i manage to get it to a gas station and get a bottle of gumout Regane injector cleaner and fill the car up with 94 octane gas. after giving it another italian tune up, it has ran fine. it may or ma not be carbon build up

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Old 12-12-2014, 12:12 AM   #4
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Default Re: 2002 SC2 Cranks but won't start

Turn key to run but not crank and listen for 2 second fuel pump prime cycle. If it has an oddball aftermarket filter regulator they fail and low fuel pressure and it does not start either. WIX 33731 works well as a replacement.

Is the yellow security light on the cluster ON?

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Old 12-12-2014, 12:49 AM   #5
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Default Re: 2002 SC2 Cranks but won't start

I didn't think about listening for the fuel pump and I do have a fuel pressure gauge I can use. Again, didn't have it with me when I looked. Having all four injectors clog at once isn't impossible but, I'd call that pretty improbable. Not so sure I'd be that interested in buying it if it's the fuel pump. PITA repair and I'd have to get it towed.

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Old 12-12-2014, 12:52 AM   #6
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Default Re: 2002 SC2 Cranks but won't start

A lot of gen-3s have had fuel pumps die. Shops tend to use the cheap filter/regulator and if it dies low then the car will not start either.

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Old 12-12-2014, 06:29 PM   #7
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Default Re: 2002 SC2 Cranks but won't start

If you go look at it again, take a compression gauge, too. If those "mechanics" can't identify a reason for it not firing, I don't trust that compression is OK...

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Old 12-13-2014, 07:01 AM   #8
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Default Re: 2002 SC2 Cranks but won't start

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If you go look at it again, take a compression gauge, too. If those "mechanics" can't identify a reason for it not firing, I don't trust that compression is OK...
Good thought! Where I live isn't exactly a thriving Metropolis but, that car is waaay out in the middle of nowhere. I had a heck of a time finding it. Need to take everything I can think of to diagnose.

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Old 12-13-2014, 11:26 AM   #9
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Default Re: 2002 SC2 Cranks but won't start

There was also a recent thread about an IAT sensor creating all kinds of funky idle issues, etc. Might be worth checking. We all seem to watch the ECTS like a hawk, then ignore the other sensor that is the same.....

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Old 12-13-2014, 11:45 AM   #10
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Default Re: 2002 SC2 Cranks but won't start

The IAT and/or the TTS rarely fail, they just die of old age. The plastic ECTS cracks in a short time frame and floods out in a conductive solution. The IAT and/or TTS should be good for about a 10 year service life in this application baring mechanical damage.

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Old 12-14-2014, 07:49 AM   #11
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Default Re: 2002 SC2 Cranks but won't start

Well this kid has one of those crappy cold air intakes on the car and the IAT is hanging in the wind but, the sensor is there and it's probably pretty close. It's a 2002 which means the ECTS should be okay and it's a 5 speed so no TTS. Besides the ECTS, TTS and IAT might make it run crappy and set the SES, I've never heard of any of the above stopping it from starting.

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Old 12-14-2014, 09:52 AM   #12
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Default Re: 2002 SC2 Cranks but won't start

Is it flooding out and not starting or the plugs just dry? Dry would indicate a fuel delivery problem.

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Old 12-15-2014, 08:22 PM   #13
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Default Re: 2002 SC2 Cranks but won't start

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Is it flooding out and not starting or the plugs just dry? Dry would indicate a fuel delivery problem.
Haven't been out there again yet. If he's still got it, I'll probably go out Wed. or Thurs. I'll bring a fuel pressure gauge, a compression gauge, maybe a vacuum gauge and a code reader to thoroughly check things out. The thing is there's not that much that will flat out stop it from starting. If it was starting and running crappy, that would be different.

I do know he's done a lot of things that I would call inadvisable like using iridium plugs and putting Restore in every oil change and I think I heard him mention Lucas. I'm not sure how long he's been doing that and those things might cause problems over time. However, none of that stuff will make it just stop without a peep.

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Old 12-15-2014, 08:31 PM   #14
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Default Re: 2002 SC2 Cranks but won't start

A can of starting fluid in case the fuel pump up and died. At least you can see that it will run.

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