Nissan Forum banner

1 - 20 of 36 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
78 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
First off, hello, this is my first post. I am a member of quite a few different UBB's so I will make some assumptions about how stuff is run here, however feel free to smack me upside the head if I do something dumb.

Yesterday I bought a 1995 Nissan 200SX off a neighbor for $350. It was not running, but I have been working on cars for over 10 years now, so not much phases me. No flaming intended, but most of my experience is in Domestic cars, with the exception of my Honda Del Sol that was stolen a few days ago. The 200SX is my replacement vehicle.

Aside from that -- here's where I'm at. The car has the 1.6, Auto. The car has about 250,000 miles and the previous owner was only so-so with maintenance.

The car won't start, but here's the steps I have taken so far:
1. New battery -- the old one was dead. I cleaned off the terminals as well.
2. I put drygas in the tank because the car has been sitting with 1/8 of a tank for about 3 months.
3. The car had new spark plugs, I pulled all of them, blew them dry (They were wet from gas from trying to start it) and I verified the gap was 0.044.
4. I can hear the fuel pump kick in, and then kick off after the relay cuts out.
5. All fuses, fusable links, and relays are good.
6. Scanned the computer, got code 21.
7. Replaced the distributor, rotor, and cap.
8. Still no go, pulled each spark plug, grounded it, and had my fiancee start it while I watched for sparks. All of them fired.
9. I replaced a very dirty air filter.
10. Still got error 21. I then cleared the codes. Tried to start, but again, no start.
11. I removed the crank position sensor and got 12v on the connector and 180ohms resistence, which is spec according to the FSM
12. The crank sensor was a little loose so I tightened it more when I replaced it.
13. just for the heck of it, I removed the MAF connector and it seemed like it was wet with oil or water (I got the engine compartment wet when I hosed down the battery tray when I replaced it). I used compressed air to blow out the connector and the cavity.
14. I removed the ECM connector and then reconnected it.
15. I had my fiancee look through the oil filler cap at the cam while I started it -- that one moved.
16. I removed the distibutor cap and had her watch that while I cranked it, so that is turning (Am I correct in that that confirms that both cams spin?) She said she saw sparks, but I expected that.
17. For some stupid reason I put the distributor cap back on and didn;t connect either of the two harnesses on it and tried to start it a few times. The computer now gave me error code 11.
18. I put both connectors back on, cleared the codes, and tried to start it again. No luck, but now I am getting code 55, which (I think) means everything is good.
19. I pulled the fuel pump fuse and tried to start it. It actually *kind of* started, and then quickly stalled. Kind of means 200-400RPM for a split second and ran really rough doing so.
20. I put the fuse back in, and tried to start to no avail, so I pulled the fuse again, tried to start, and again no luck. It didn't "half-start" like it did before.
21. Throughout all of this, I tried pumping the gas while starting, I also tried starting with my foot to the floor (I know some EFI systems use this as a way to tell the ECM that it's flooded). Still no avail.

I am going to test the fuel pressure tomorrow, I have a feeling that the fuel pump is not holding pressure even though it is making a whirring sound. I am not suspect of the starter as you can tell that it is working properly.

So.... eh... any ideas?

Are their any other sensors that are involved in just getting the car started? Should I look more into the MAF? Do these cars have a MAP, and would that create this type of problem? TPS? EGR Sensors? I am not sure what to believe as it is getting spark (I saw it) and I can smell fuel....

One other thing. It is a brand new distributor, however I dod check pin5 and it is getting 12v.

Thanks in Advance, and yes, I have done about 2 hours of searching before I posted all this :cheers:
 

·
My ass, your face
Joined
·
3,520 Posts
heres a clue


starter


also...have u tried putting the car in neutral and tried starting it that way? or tried push starting it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
33 Posts
A just had a similar problem with mine today. From what I have read I am leaning towards leaky injectors and that may be what your problem is because the motor was almost turning over (you could see the RPMs bounce from idle to about 200-400rpm) but it would never catch. I could smell gas also and I cleaned the plugs and looked at the gap along with new air filter. Let me know your outcome. Thanks.

Dave
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
129 Posts
On my '92 Sentra (same motor as yours) the engine coolant temp sensor was bad and caused a code 13. pretty much all those sensors affect the driveability and starting of the car. Since you have a code 55 I'd bet they are all good. Check that gas pressure. Could pull all the plugs, pull the fuse on the fuel pump and crank the car over. No, it isn't going to start, but it'll clear fuel out of those cylinders. clean up the plugs and try to start it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
450 Posts
Since the maintenance was so-so, maybe the fuel filter has not been changed for a while. That caused hard starts when I got my car at 75,000 miles.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
78 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Gracias for the suggestions. I know the starter is working, I can see that cams are moving and the tach indicates that it is spinning the engine.

It is raining like crazy today, however hopefully it will let up enough when I get home to test the fuel pressure. I am going to test it through the fuel filter, so that I can see the pressure as delivered to the fuel rail. I did try starting the car in Neutral (Thinking it was a Park-Neutral safety interlock problem) but no go. I am not looking forward to testing the injectors, but if the fuel pump holds, I may pull the fuel rail and turn the ignition on and see if any leak.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
78 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Ok, so I tested the fuel pressure through the oil filter. After relay shuts off I have about 42psi. While cranking it varies between 35 and maybe 45, but for the most part of it, I think that should be good enough to start it. Interestingly enough, to relieve pressure after testing, I pulled the fuel pump fuse and again it actually ran for about 2-5 seconds. Real rough, about 300-400RPM. I put everything back together and then for the hell of it, connected a ground wire from the - batt terminal to the distributor mounting bracket, just in case it had a bad ground. Still no go. My battery is starting to show signs of getting low, but it still cranks fast enough that it should start. I then took off the maf sensor connector, air intake temp sensor, throttle position sensor, and the other 3-wire sensor behind it. I then cleaned the terminals on all of them and replaced them. Still no go. Computer still giving a code 55. I tried it with the parking brake off and in park. Still no go. So, any other ideas? This thing is starting to iritate me.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
129 Posts
Just a thought I had while chattin' with Nostra.... have you, did you check timing on the motor and make sure the plug wires are in the correct order?? I know they are all different lengths, but could be plugged incorrectly. I'm no mechanic and couldn't tell you how to time the motor, we weren't even sure if the car would or wouldn't start if the timing was outta whack. I do know it definately won't fire if the plugwires are out of order. Might wanna grab the FSM and make sure those two things are good to go!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
78 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
Modemagic said:
Just a thought I had while chattin' with Nostra.... have you, did you check timing on the motor and make sure the plug wires are in the correct order?? I know they are all different lengths, but could be plugged incorrectly. I'm no mechanic and couldn't tell you how to time the motor, we weren't even sure if the car would or wouldn't start if the timing was outta whack. I do know it definately won't fire if the plugwires are out of order. Might wanna grab the FSM and make sure those two things are good to go!
Thanks Dave. Yep I thought about that and checked it myself, I meant to add that to my last post, I knew I forgot something. According to the book, the cyls are numbered 1 -4 starting with left hand cylinder and timing should be 1-3-4-2 starting with #1 being on the firewall side of the dist.

I did a lot more searching and figured that I may have got the code wrong as a 12 instead of a 21. For the hell of it, I looked up code 12 on this (and other b14 boards) and it mentioned flooding problems, which may explain why I have spark and fuel, yet no go. So I yanked the MAF and tried to start it with no maf. Amazingly enough it did start, ran like complete crap, after about 30 seconds the check engine light came on and she died about 10 seconds later. I am pretty sure it's the maf. It is getting 12v on the proper power connector. Of course maf's are special order, so it may be next week before I have one in hand.

Also I read saw, that the coolant temp sensor may cause flooding in cold weather. While 55 degrees is probably warm to all on this board, it is about 10-15 degrees colder than normal for us in cali. I checked that and got the following numbers:
2.85k-ohms
4.85v at connector
my crappy garage thermometer said it was 55 degrees F when I tested it, so it looks pretty much in spec.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
129 Posts
55 degrees is a heat wave where I'm from. Last week the temp. never got about single digits, and was buried below zero after the windchill factor. U can take that temp sensor and put it in water of various temps to check it out. It was kinda fun when I played with mine. :)

Before you go and special order the MAF... check and make sure there isn't one floating around on the classifieds section. I know there is one out there... cuz I possibly may buy it! :)

Way to not give up and give in to the dealer. Feels good to make progress on your car and fix it yourself.. doesn't it???!!?! :)
 

·
Mofo
Joined
·
2,225 Posts
You can also try our classified section, in the want to buy, or members selling sections.
Also have you checked out your local junk yards? The Maf's have to be pretty expensive new.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
78 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
Thanks for the tips guys :cheers: I never thought about the classified sections, heh oh well. I did special order one, but I figure I'll try to take it back if it doesn't work. I'll just be very careful with it when I hook it up. If I can fix it with a new $170 maf, and use my old distributor, then the repair will be cheaper because I paid $230 for the dist. I thought about junk yards, but I figured I would get a new one knowing that it works.

Heh yay, $crew the dealers -- Last time I went to a dealer was in '98 when I bought a Camaro Z28. They told me $2000 worth of crap was wrong with it, so I took it home and tested everything they said was wrong -- None of the things they said was true. Just a bunch of loosers expecting me to be the next idiot walking into the service dept. For those who care, it's the Okemos MI Chevy Dealer.

The MAF comes in this tuesday, so until then I will not have any updates. Not to take the thread into a different direction, but I did order and receive my clear corners because the stock one was broke a little. They look nice :)

Also FWIW, if anybody here has any LT1 powered Camaros, I have two and Know quite a bit so feel free to ask. One of mine does the 1/4 in [email protected] (With a horrible 2.4 60')
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
78 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
Update

Ok Well, got an update. Probably worse off now, but anyway here goes:

1. MAF Came in -- no go still doesn't run, so I took it back because I didn't need it. On a hunch, I took off the coolant temp sensor. It actually ran at this point. Crappy, but it ran as long as you didn't touch the gas.

2. Replaced the Coolant sensor, tried my old dist. No Go, so I put the new one back on. Now it ran much better, but still chugged and didn't like to run above 4k RPM. If you "pedaled" it, you could get to 5k, but you could hear a lot of misfires, so I shut her down.

3. Waited till she cooled and plugs had white insulators (They are new) however had a bluish tinge on the electrode (Not the center, but the ground one). I should say all but cyl #4. Hmmm. So I replaced the fuel filter (Just in case) and threw new wires on. It ran better, but still not great. Figuring it may be old or bad gas, I let it rev for quite a while until I got a lot of smoke from under the hood.

4. The smoke was from caked on oil on the bottom exhaust pipe, but the real problem was the bright orange glowing CAT in the manifold. I immediately shut her down.

So Now what? Besides the fact that I am prolly out $500 for a new cat, what could cause this? I'm guessing lots of fuel in the exhaust, but WTF is causing it to run rich? Could it be from all the other times I tried to start it, or do we think it is still running rich. Remember it's got a new dist. so they all should be getting spark. Once it's cooled down, I'll pull all the plugs again and see what I can find. One other thing...no check engine light :(

Only other thing I can think of is timing -- before I pulled the old dist off, I marked the alignment of the old dist, so it should be pretty close. I've got a timing light, but where is the timing plate on the engine, I haven't seen it anywhere near the crank. Is it hard to get to, or see? Plus I wouldn't think the timing would be off much -- is it really possible to get this bad of a problem if it is off a degree or two?

Also -- one last thing. If anybody has a cali manifold with working cat they want to get rid of, I'm all ears :)

Thanks in advance.
 

·
TwiztidKidd
Joined
·
807 Posts
I know it sounds weird but I'd try a jump from another car... also check the 180 signal on the distributor.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
78 Posts
Discussion Starter #17
Excellent, Thanks Nostrodomas! Is it easier to read from above or below the engine? It looks like those pics were taken from the top.

Twiz - A great idead as well (Regarding the 180 signal. I'll give that a shot tomorrow). As far as jump starting -- I actually had to do that for a while because the new battery got pretty drained from me trying to start it. Now that it does start and run, it does get charged when I start it, but I try not to let it run too long because I don;t want to mess with the cat until it I know it idles better. Unfortunately I have to go OEM with the CAT if it goes because of the smog laws I have to deal with out here, otherwise I'd just get me a nice header and throw on a high-performance cat and call it done :)

I sat down with a paper and pencil trying to think of what I checked and what I didn't. Because it runs like crap from a cold start, I am thinking it has to do with a sensor of other device that is used in closed loop. I think that eliminated the o2 sensors. I talked to the previous owner and they told me that when it died on them, they were driving down the freeway and all of the sudden the engine would not rev higher and it slowly lost power until they pulled over and then it died. They took it to a shop and the shop thought it was the dist., but I am not sure what else they messed with.

Tomorrow I plan to look at:
1. Timing
2. IAC sensor (I can't find it -- stupid haynes book doesn;t really show where it is)
3. I will check the dist. 180 as mentioned.
4. I will check fuel pressure
5. I will check fpr to see if the pressure rises when I remove vacuum
6. I might check engine vacuum just to see if it fluctuates, or if it is too low in case it has a leak.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
78 Posts
Discussion Starter #19
Excellenet -- I thought that was it, but it looks nothing like what the haynes had. I owe ya a :cheers: big time. Now I pray I didn't cook my cat!
 
1 - 20 of 36 Posts
Top