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Troubleshooting Basic Problems



as your car ever stalled or your engine cranked but didn’t catch?  Did you try and diagnose the problem yourself? Or, did you throw your head down, pull out your cell phone, or call a mechanic to come tow your car because you didn’t know what to do? If you answered, “yes” to the later then you definitely need to read this article. In this article, we will discuss some basic tips to help restart a stalled car.


Lift the hood and let the engine cool down. Ignition module heat-related problems can be overcome by letting the module cool down.


     Remove the air filter. If the engine is flooded or the air filter is dirty, this will help clear out the unburned gas.

     Pop the gas cap and let the fuel tank breathe. Sometimes the fuel tank vent valve fails, preventing fuel from being drawn from the tank.


     Turn the key all the way OFF before cranking the engine. This might allow your automobile’s computer to reset and might help the computer recognize a failure of some sensor. If this doesn’t help, try disconnecting and reconnecting the battery cable.


     If your engine has a Mass Air Flow sensor, disconnect it when the key is off, which will cause the automobile’s computer to go into a fail-safe mode.


     Remove the oxygen sensor or loosen the exhaust pipe somewhere in front of the catalytic converter to let the exhaust leak out.


     If you have a frozen fuel pump, you can use a drop light to heat it and this will help thaw the water inside of it.


     If you smell gas and your car is flooded, try removing your air filter and let your engine air out for 20 minutes or more. Once you do this, you can crank it over by holding the gas pedal on the floor. This will help clear out the extra gas and let the engine draw in fresh air.


     Put a little fuel in the carburetor to get the engine to fire up


     Stress the module. Remove the coil wire from the distributor, holding it one inch from a good ground. Once the engine is cranked, slowly move he wire closer to the ground until it begins to spark. Repeat as necessary. Once it starts to produce a spark, plug it back in the distributor and start the engine.


     .Get out those jumper cables and connect to another vehicle. Once started, run your auto for 15 minutes at a very fast idle to put an additional charge on your battery. Leave the jumpers connected and try starting your vehicle. Sometimes this extra voltage will make your fuel pump motor come to life.




Now that we have discussed troubleshooting your car, it is very important that you take some life-saving precautions before you begin:


·         Never put your hands near the belt of a running automobile.

·         Never put the car in gear without somebody to hold the brake pedal unless you have the wheels up in the.

·         Never work on a car without taking the positive battery cable off of the battery first.

·         Never stand in line with the fan that cools your radiator when your car is running.

·         Always tie back long hair when working on your car.

·         Never take the radiator cap off of your car while the engine is hot!

·         Never work on a warm car unless you have to.

·         Never work under a car held up by a jack.


Remember the buddy system. It’s better if you have someone working on your car with you, but if you’re planning on working on your car alone, make sure a friend or family members knows what you’re up to so they can check on you periodically. If possible, keep a cell phone nearby in case you need to call for help.


Also see

Your Car's Mechanical Condition

5 Unusual Odors From Your Vehicle -Do a little detective nose work on your car!

What's That Strange Noise?  Common Noises and What They May Mean -what are your ears telling you?

Drip, Drip, Drip.  Diagnosing Your Car's Leaks -Red, Clear, Black, or Green.  What does it all mean? 

What Grade of Gasoline to Use? -Regular, Mid-Grade, or Premium.  How do you decide?




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