'Nuther Won't Start Thread - Defender Source
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  #1  
Old April 15th, 2009, 10:17 PM
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Don Bunnell
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'Nuther Won't Start Thread

I've been searching the f'n archives and trying the different things I've read but I am still stuck.

The 90 had been running fine and driven daily. I then went away for a week, came back home Monday night and took the it for a drive to the store - it started no problem. On the way back (and thankfully only a 100 feet from my driveway) it just stopped running. Towed her up the driveway and have been trying various things. Info so far:

-Turns over fine just won't start.
-All dash instruments seems to work - although the Tach goes all over - up to 5k. Gas guage works.
-The Check Engine light also comes on for a moment then goes off.
-Checked the connections on the coil. All seemed fine. I had an issue with the connections last year but the local garage tighten them a bit and used dielectric grease. I put a voltmeter on each of the studs and it read 11.4 while at key position II and then dipped when I started cranking to around 8.
-Checked all plug wires - they seem connected well
-Pulled distributor cap - looks clean and dry.
-Pulled the fuel pump relays and was able to find 1 new one at the local euro auto store (same Bosch #). I was going to order another new one (just to make sure that is not the relays) but when the key is turned I hear the click.
-Checked what I think is the Inertia Switch on the firewall (it's near the center top right?). Button was in and pressed it to make sure.
-I then pulled the fuel line on the "out" side of the filter. Turned key and gas came out for a second then stopped. It seems to come out strong as well.

So I'm stuck. Seems like it's getting fuel and the relays and filter are fine. Could a coil just crap out and stop working? Why would the tach bounce all over on the turn over? If anyone has any insight I'd love to hear. I could just have it towed to the local garage but really want to learn more about this trick and figure it out myself - not to mention save some money.

Thanks in advance!
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  #2  
Old April 15th, 2009, 10:25 PM
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Sounds like when I lost my coil one time. Check to make sure fuel in the line, but brings back memories for me.
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Old April 15th, 2009, 10:34 PM
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Don Lang
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Got spark? with the tac jumping to 5000rpm while cranking something not right there... bad diodes? I have herd they can cause problems but not too sure... Diesels don't have electronic problems like this...
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  #4  
Old April 15th, 2009, 10:45 PM
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One thing I learned to try on my non-starting journey was to unplug the engine coolant temp sensor and try to crank it over. Mine always started with one of the sensors unplugged. Some sort of default ECU mode.

Not much solving help, but it might get it started.


bill
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  #5  
Old April 15th, 2009, 10:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by exmod110
Got spark? with the tac jumping to 5000rpm while cranking something not right there... bad diodes? I have herd they can cause problems but not too sure... Diesels don't have electronic problems like this...
I was going to pull a plug tonight but couldn't find the spark plug socket. It's on my list to check tomorrow. I'll search on diodes as well. Would love to have a diesel conversion - it's on the wish list

Follow-up Post:

Quote:
Originally Posted by kolvedic
One thing I learned to try on my non-starting journey was to unplug the engine coolant temp sensor and try to crank it over. Mine always started with one of the sensors unplugged. Some sort of default ECU mode.

Not much solving help, but it might get it started.


bill
Thanks. I'll add this to the list.

Follow-up Post:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hoosier
Sounds like when I lost my coil one time. Check to make sure fuel in the line, but brings back memories for me.
I was thinking of just getting a new coil just to rule it out especially since I'm not so sure the history on the one in the truck now. How can I check for fuel after the exit of the fuel filter?
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  #6  
Old April 15th, 2009, 11:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kolvedic
One thing I learned to try on my non-starting journey was to unplug the engine coolant temp sensor and try to crank it over. Mine always started with one of the sensors unplugged. Some sort of default ECU mode.

Not much solving help, but it might get it started.


bill
Hey, that is always my suggestion, but I unplug the MAF.
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  #7  
Old April 15th, 2009, 11:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by evilfij
Hey, that is always my suggestion, but I unplug the MAF.
Just went out and unplugged the MAF and tried turning over. Still no go. Smelt gas, and tach is still bouncing all over between 3-5k.
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Old April 15th, 2009, 11:28 PM
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First, are you getting spark at the coil wire? (hold it near metal and you will see the spark, use gloves to not get shocked). If so, unplug the alternator. Tach should be dead, but see if it starts. If not, it is something in the ignition system, probably the ignition module.

edit: does it catch at all? Like fire a little bit? How about does it catch at all when you crank it foot to the floor?
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  #9  
Old April 15th, 2009, 11:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by evilfij
First, are you getting spark at the coil wire? (hold it near metal and you will see the spark, use gloves to not get shocked). If so, unplug the alternator. Tach should be dead, but see if it starts. If not, it is something in the ignition system, probably the ignition module.

edit: does it catch at all? Like fire a little bit? How about does it catch at all when you crank it foot to the floor?
I'll give this a try first thing in the morning. Rest of the family is asleep and don't want to wake them :D But I'm anxious to try. Didn't check the coil wire spark today so can't say.

And it hasn't caught at all - nothing with all the times I've tried. Even tried the pedal to floor.

In the meantime I'll search on ignition module. Thanks!
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  #10  
Old April 16th, 2009, 01:11 AM
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Sounds like no spark. Just follow the spark and it will become obvious. IE if you have spark at the coil, do you have spark at the plugs. There are a limited number of components that have to do with spark. BTW, I forgot my best tip, buy a second defender and swap parts between them until you figure out which one is bad
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  #11  
Old April 16th, 2009, 04:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by evilfij
Sounds like no spark. Just follow the spark and it will become obvious. IE if you have spark at the coil, do you have spark at the plugs. There are a limited number of components that have to do with spark. BTW, I forgot my best tip, buy a second defender and swap parts between them until you figure out which one is bad
Yup, no spark at plugs. Checked 2 seperate ones and nothing. There is spark at the coil wire going into the distributor cap. I unplug the alternator this morning - nothing. Plugged it back in and the tach seems to be in the normal range now. Ignition Module then?

Would love another Defender especially a 110. But would probably go diesel powered if that ever happened.
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  #12  
Old April 17th, 2009, 11:47 AM
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I'd have to go out and check this to confirm, but if the ignition module (on the side of the distributor) goes you wouldn't have spark at the coil either.

Maybe it's your plug wire going from the coil to the distributor? Take the wire off the coil side and turn it over. You should hear some serious arcing. If you've got spark there, try taking the wire off the center of the distributor (while plugged into the coil) and seeing if you have spark at that end of the wire.

If you do, then I think it's a pretty solid diagnosis that the problem lies within the distributor.

Follow-up Post:

Hmm just reread your post and it sounds like you've already done that test pretty much. I'm going to put my money on something in the dizzy. Have you popped the cap off?
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  #13  
Old April 17th, 2009, 12:06 PM
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Probably a bad coil wire. Swap it with one of the pulg wires and see if it starts on seven cylinders. Also check to see that the cap is not cracked or the rotor broken.

To replace the coil wire call mike at LR west chester (or your favorite dealer/parts house) and tell them you want the coil wire with the boot on it that goes over the base of the coil. If they don't know what you are talking, call a different parts place.
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Old April 17th, 2009, 03:30 PM
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Ok - I tightened the connections that coil wire end (after swapping a plug wire and the coil end seemed a little loose). Pulled the cap and cleaned connections, same with rotor. Finally saw a spark @ the plug but not sure if I missed it before.

So seems like I have fuel (plugs were a bit 'wet' when pulled) and spark. Maybe the spark isn't strong enough? Got the battery on the trickle charger now. Any next steps?

And thanks for the help so far - I really want to figure this out myself/d90 experts rather than the local garage.
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Old April 17th, 2009, 03:35 PM
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If it is flooded (it seems it is) try starting foot to the floor now. It could have been a connection issue at the coil. If you don't get any attempt at firing, it is probably a coil or ignition module.

Ron
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  #16  
Old April 17th, 2009, 04:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by evilfij
If it is flooded (it seems it is) try starting foot to the floor now. It could have been a connection issue at the coil. If you don't get any attempt at firing, it is probably a coil or ignition module.

Ron
Just tried and still nothing. Local parts store has the iginition module so I'm thinking of just running there and picking it up.
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Old April 17th, 2009, 04:44 PM
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Worth a shot. Assume if the tach starts acting funny that the alternator will kill the new one too and should be replaced.
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Old April 17th, 2009, 04:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by evilfij
Worth a shot. Assume if the tach starts acting funny that the alternator will kill the new one too and should be replaced.
I was thinking that. Will definitely keep an eye on it. Thanks
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  #19  
Old April 19th, 2009, 09:52 PM
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New coil and ignition module and nothing. I am missing something and might just bite the bullet and have it towed to the local euro garage. Once it gets sorted I'll post an update. Thanks again - I really appreciate the help in the posts although I feel like setting it on fire as my next step.
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  #20  
Old April 19th, 2009, 10:07 PM
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Did you replace the silver relay for the computer? Try swapping them and see if the fuel pump still runs.

Ron
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