Won't start after after torrential downpour?! - Defender Source
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  #1  
Old August 15th, 2011, 08:06 PM
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Jiman Khosravan
'94 D90
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Won't start after after torrential downpour?!

So for those of you in the DC/MD/VA area... I think you know what I'm talking about... 5 in of rain in about an hour.

I get in this morning... turn the ignition... all the dash lights turn on.. battery is good......tries to start.. but never rolls over. (am I saying it correctly?) basically just killing the battery and starter. I ended up draining the battery so I connected my van to it and let her charge for a good 15-20 minutes and got the V back up to ~12.5

I read through a few threads... it could be any of the following:

A) Silver relays
Which is for the fuel pump I believe... and many are saying I should hear the pump?
Where exactly should I put my ear?

B) Ignition Switch
Although it's hard for me to think it's this since I get radio at position 1, "all" the dash lights at position 2 and starter kicks in when I go to position 3.

C) ECU
Is the test for this to just swap one out?

Finally
D) Coil
I wouldn't know where to look on this one.


Also, I might add that the door tops were off and all that water did get into the cab... and I'm sure it splashed all around... :/

Thanks Gents,

~Jij
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  #2  
Old August 16th, 2011, 07:44 AM
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J. Michael McCaig
D90 ST, LR110, Series IIa, RRC
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Chances are the coil/ignition just got wet. Check for spark at the plugs. I've told this story before but the same thing happened to me right after I got my 90. I didn't have any tools etc. with me and I was parked in the middle of nowhere on an old farm. I looked around in some sheds trying to find some WD40 to help dry the coil wires and cap...couldn't find any but I did find a leaf blower. It's amazing how quick 200mph wind from that blower dried things out were it would start!
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  #3  
Old August 16th, 2011, 11:05 AM
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Jiman Khosravan
'94 D90
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Alrighty... I'm just gonna replace all of it... and at least have spares.

Can anyone confirm these parts?

Ignition switch:
http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/IGNIT...-/150602431178

Silver Relays:
http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/LR-Ra...-/180197628911


And could someone direct me to ECU and Coil please?

Thanks,

~Jij
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  #4  
Old August 16th, 2011, 11:14 AM
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Joshua
1995 Black ST - Rhinolined edition
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That's a lot for an ignition switch.

http://www.partsgeek.com/catalog/199...on_switch.html

I used Part Number: W0133-1651203 (the bottom one on that page). Remember there are two little screws (you'll need a eyeglass screwdriver) to remove the ignition switch.

And regarding silver relays:
http://www.defendersource.com/forum/...ad.php?t=26333
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  #5  
Old August 16th, 2011, 11:36 AM
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you need to do the following- let it dry out. next time it rains, put a towel and cover all the wires on the passenger side under the hood so water cannot get to the wires going to the ecu. when done raining, i can almost guarantee it will fire right up. the towel will be soaked. everyone thinks its relays or ignition or whatever, but if you put the hood up you will notice that the rubber seal/gasket that runs along the firewall in the gutter area that butts upto the hood when closed- does not actually stretch the full length of the gutter. water easily gets down there and water on the wires will cause it to not fire up.

if i still had my 90, i would show you pictures of the area.
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  #6  
Old August 16th, 2011, 12:02 PM
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Joshua
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x2 what Kevin said, but it's definitely a good idea to have spares of the relays and the ignition switch. Your problem is not complex, just a good drying out needed (happens a lot to trucks left outside). The ECU's are pretty resilient.
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  #7  
Old August 16th, 2011, 12:16 PM
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Jiman Khosravan
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Kevin... it's been a day and a half.. I tried this morning and it still wouldn't start..

I'll wait again til tonight

I hate driving my white van to dc... I feel like all someone needs to do to f* with me is to spray paint "free cookies" on the side and I go directly to jail.

~Jij
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  #8  
Old August 16th, 2011, 12:30 PM
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this happened to me when i first got my 90. It was due to a hairline crack in the distributor cap allowing moisture in.
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  #9  
Old August 16th, 2011, 02:55 PM
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Jake K.
95 D90 SW
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Why in the world would you jump the gun and start replacing parts when all that is most likely wrong is there is moisture under the cap. Check for spark 1st...@ the cap and @ the plugs to start!
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  #10  
Old August 16th, 2011, 07:13 PM
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Jiman Khosravan
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So came home... tried to start it.. same thing... dead...

I go to autozone to feel better I guess... buy this buy that...

Come back... about to test some sparks... and boom... turns on.

Although all of you are right.. and was just moisture... I need to prevent this from happening....

Jake, how can prevent moisture underneath the cap? Put some sealant around the cap door?

Remove each wire one by one, clean them out, dielectric grease all of them to the sparkplugs and cap and coil for starters..

Is it possible the rotor arm inside the distributor has faded out?

I frankly liked it better when it wasn't working so I can get to the root cause... I think i just jinx myself.

~Jij
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  #11  
Old August 16th, 2011, 07:28 PM
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Jake K.
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Diode grease every connection under the hood and even the plug for the ECU. Pull one wire off the cap at a time and squirt some grease down in the hole and put it back on and then go to the other end of the wire and fill the boot and stick it back on the spark plug. Don't forget the coil wire. In terms of the cap...you can silicone it on but, that makes for a pain when you need to remove it for service. Just rub some around the lip and clamp it back down. Keep a can of WD-40 in the cubby just in case. Glad it was a simple fix. I hate it when they fix themselves. The rotors usually work or don't work.
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  #12  
Old August 29th, 2011, 04:42 PM
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Jiman Khosravan
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So DC's having all the fun... Earthquake then Hurricane this past week.. and my D90 decides to not run again.

I thought i had dieletric'd it enough.. but clearly not... (dis cap and coil).

Kevin, top left green circle... is that the area you are reffering to where wter gets in allt he time? Besides pre-emptively protecting it when it rains, what's the fix for it?


And anyone know where I can get a mallory disibutor capa nd rotor arm?

(the picture attached is one i found online...,not of my truck since she's at home and I'm at the office)


Quote:
Originally Posted by NoVaKevin View Post
you need to do the following- let it dry out. next time it rains, put a towel and cover all the wires on the passenger side under the hood so water cannot get to the wires going to the ecu. when done raining, i can almost guarantee it will fire right up. the towel will be soaked. everyone thinks its relays or ignition or whatever, but if you put the hood up you will notice that the rubber seal/gasket that runs along the firewall in the gutter area that butts upto the hood when closed- does not actually stretch the full length of the gutter. water easily gets down there and water on the wires will cause it to not fire up.

if i still had my 90, i would show you pictures of the area.
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  #13  
Old August 29th, 2011, 05:40 PM
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Craig Dickson
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If your truck is like mine, I have about a 1/2" gap where the hood is supposed to meet the top of the fender. As you can see from the picture when it is windy it would be easy for water to splash in on the coil.
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  #14  
Old September 1st, 2011, 01:23 PM
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Jiman Khosravan
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How can you tell if the fuel pump is bad?
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  #15  
Old September 1st, 2011, 07:39 PM
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Jiman Khosravan
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I'm just gonna write... and hopefully someone can shed some light cause clearly i'm in the never ending tunnel to hell...

At first it looked like a moisture issue... so after 2-3 days... it finally started... This happened twice in the past 2 weeks, with the huge downpour and the hurricane.
2 days ago I had replaced the silver relays and even replaced relay harness and the truck started right up. Crimped all the connections and sealed them. I made those water tight as can be.
Even wd40'd the distributor cap and dielectric grease'd all the cables to the plugs and coil, and even the ECU connections.

It's been sunny and 80+ the past 5 days... so absolutely no moisture anywhere... (I did wash her 3 days ago)
But this morning, I turned her on... 3 minutes later, it died and then just wouldn't restart. Tries and tries.. but nothing. Killing the battery. So I'm back to square one.

To add insult to injury, and add more elements to the equation, the car does suddently stall when coming to a stop... so when coming up to a red light, when I press on the clutch to put her in neutral, the revs go from whatever it is... 2-4k rpms to 0 and she dies. This happens once every couple of days. I then restart her and she comes right back.

So right now, most likely there won't be spark ( i bought of the those spark testers and will try it out )
I don't know where to look... it's just becoming frustrating now when everyday you pray she turns over and runs :/

I think I just teared a bit.
~Jij
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  #16  
Old September 1st, 2011, 08:48 PM
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Charles Galpin
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Ok, lets start here. Grab a tissue and dab gently around the eyes. Careful not to poke yourself in the eye.

Now, get someone to help or be in a quiet area and turn the ignition key to the "on" position. The dash lights should come on, and you should hear the whirrr of the fuel pump for a few seconds before cutting off. If necessary have someone go to the back of the truck and listen for a noise by the fuel tank. If you don't hear it, then double check your relay work, otherwise it might be time to replace your fuel pump. Justin from L8 showed me a trick recently that might help in this case - have someone turn the key to start it and simultaneously give the skid plate a whack with a BFH about 1/3 from the left side and about 1/3 from the rear. In theory this jars the motor on the pump to start.

If you hear the fuel pump come on, check again for moisture *inside the distributor cap as well* and check for spark.
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  #17  
Old September 14th, 2011, 09:58 PM
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Woody
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Mine had exactly the same problem during those rain storms. The bottom of the bad relays had visibly corroded.
The silver relays were replaced with some relays stolen from my lights, runs fine now. I will be ordering some replacement silver relays soon.
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  #18  
Old September 15th, 2011, 01:40 PM
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Jake K.
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Are there no codes stored?
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  #19  
Old September 19th, 2011, 06:41 PM
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Jiman Khosravan
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I opened the box to look at the display... led's are blank.

It doesn't turn on at all... no numbers.

Is that normal? Shouldn't it have a number showing up at all times.. even if all is swell?

~Jij
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  #20  
Old September 19th, 2011, 06:43 PM
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Chris Snyder
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No. The LED's will only turn on if there is a fault code to display... What do you mean you opened the box?
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