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Old 06-10-2008, 07:30 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default fuel pump runs, no start.

I have a 2002 OB. Well, my sister does. I am trying to diagnose a no-start problem. I can hear the fuel pump run. But the engine is getting no fuel. I used starting fluid to prove it. It fired right up. I did not check the filter. I work on cars and have never seen a filter completely block fuel flow. I am wondering if there is something specific I should be investigating. It has the V6 engine.


Thanks
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Old 06-10-2008, 08:33 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Welcome. Subaru has never made a V6 in it's entire lifetime.

However...

Did the fuel pump start and then build pressure and then quit? You can tell the best by turning the key to each position slowly and listening.

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Old 06-10-2008, 08:51 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Pardon my thoughtlessness. I meant Flat 6, horizontally-opposed-6, H6.

Yes the pump cycles. I am a very inclined car guy. I can here the pump come on. And it runs when cranking. It ran when I sprayed starting fluid in the intake. No leaking fuel.
I've just never heard of a fuel filter completely stopping flow. The car ran fine until they very last time they tried to start it.
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Old 06-10-2008, 09:43 PM   #4 (permalink)
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So basically, the engine sounds as to fire while cranking the starter? But will not fire on it's own?

TPS?

Ignition coil?

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Old 06-10-2008, 09:43 PM   #5 (permalink)
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break the fuel line going to the fuel rail and see if you have pressurized fuel going to the injectors. You can even just crack the line but be carefull it will make a mess. If no flow then you have a clog somewhere. Work your way back. If you have fuel then your injectors need troubleshooting.......Look in the repair manual, sorry I dont have one.
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Old 06-10-2008, 09:47 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Is it that it ignites every once in a while, sort of sputters, or it simply just does not ignite at all? Just cranks at a same rate. No fuel smell from the exhaust??
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Old 06-10-2008, 09:52 PM   #7 (permalink)
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If it runs with starting fluid why would I check the TPS or coils?

I have a suspicion that there is a clog. I'll probably check the line at the filter 1st though since theoretically, it would create a restriction before anything else.
I wasn't sure if Subs had an issue with the fuel system that could hasten my diagnosis.

Thanks for the input,
Josh
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Old 06-10-2008, 09:56 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by johneracer
Is it that it ignites every once in a while, sort of sputters, or it simply just does not ignite at all? Just cranks at a same rate. No fuel smell from the exhaust??
Yes, it just cranks. No smell. It definitely isn't getting fuel. It started right up and ran smoothly with starting fluid. What threw me off is that I can hear the pump.
She's had the car 2 yrs and hasn't changed the fuel filter. Not sure when it was done last so it's a possibility.
I sure hope so. That'd be an easy fix.
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Old 06-11-2008, 02:51 AM   #9 (permalink)
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I think I agree with the ignition coil. It could be your ignition switch because I know on my truck, there is a bulletin out for a wire in the steering column that can become loose.
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Old 06-11-2008, 08:01 AM   #10 (permalink)
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speedfreak_josh reported that the engine runs smoothly when using the starter spray. shouldn't this pretty well eliminate the ignition and engine mechanicals as the cause?

The fuel pump cycling seems correct, although this does not ensure that the fuel line pressure or delivery rate is correct. Line pressure is mechanically, not electrically, regulated.

A blockage in the fuel line, including the filter, is possible, but I would think less likely given the symptoms. A clogged fuel filter would not be 100% unless it is really bad (in which case the last time the car was used it should have been showing signs) so there would be some fuel delivery -- at the least at the outset, so the engine might start and then sputter to a stall.

Clogged injectors could also be a problem, but I doubt all six would be affected equally all at the same time. Consequently, I would expect very rough idle or at least some sign of ignition, even if the engine does not continue to run. But it sounds as if there isn't even any sputtering attempts at ignition.

Assuming that fuel is getting to the fuel rail at the right pressure, there is still the question of whether the injectors are functioning. They are electronically controlled by the ECM. It might be possible to measure the voltage to the injectors while cranking the engine to see if they are getting the voltages necessary for the release of fuel into the intake manifold.
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