The engine runs great until it starts to warm up and then it seems that the fuel pump gets a signal to stop pumping and,,, kaput! I've changed the water temp sensors, removed and cleaned the throttle body and cleaned all 3 sensors. I replaced the coil assy, starter. The idle air control valves measurement was correct. And I am showing no check engine light.
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Re: car needs help,, so do i!!
Its not a sensor of any sort its just your Fuel Filter that hasn't been replaced for a long period of time. Try changing that and you'll be good to go. Let me know if this helps and anymore questions feel free to express it.
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year/make/model???? It is possible the IAC motor can cause this problem, however, it should act up in the warm as well. You may have coolant temperature sensor sending false readings to the computer The temp sensor lets the computer know the engine temperature and the computer will supply the fuel needed accordingly for the out side temperature. You may also have an issue with a dirty throttle plate causing minimum air flow to be off. You can check the throttle plate by removing the air hose from the air filter box to the throttle assembly and look inside at the plate. It should be a clean silver color. If it looks black and gummed up, use carb spray and a toothbrush to clean it up to see if it corrects the problem
You can't rule that out, a computer failure, but some testing would have to be done to truly determine the cause. The computer should send a signal to the fuel pump relay to turn the fuel pump on, both at key turned to on, and when key is in start-cranking the engine over. If you have to use starting fluid for hot restarts as you described (will it stay running then after starting it with the fluid?)...then it seems to be a fueling problem. I would say check fuel pressure, auto parts stores rent or loan them. It may be, for whatever reason, the pump is not being turned on through the fuel pump relay when it won't start without starting fluid.
First check fuel pressure with engine cold, and hot at engine side of fuel filter. There shouldn't be any difference. If you get a significant pressure drop after running engine until warmed up, replace fuel filter and check results again. If that still doesn't help your fuel pump might be on the blink. This is assuming your car is in good tune(plugs,wires).
I would go with the injector pump first, if it's older than 10-15 years, and then the fuel pump would be my next guess. Check first to see if the fuel pump is actually pumping fuel before doing either.
The car may be hard to start because it may need a normal tune-up. If the spark plugs are pretty used, they will slowly stop burning as much fuel because the spark slowly gets lesser and lesser. On a cold day the fuel is harder to ignite with a small amount of spark.
Normal idle when its cold means that your cars idle is probably too high. If you lower the idle, the choke on a cold day will keep the idle a little higher until the motor warms and then it will kick back off. If the idle is too high, it will run very rich, smothering itself with fuel, and causing the idle to stay low. When the car warms, its creating better spark when its warm, and with the idle being too high its running at a fast idle.
The car wont start sometimes can be the cause of a few things. If the ground is bad on the fuel pump, it wont make a good connection sometimes for when you turn the key on, the fuel pump dont pump the fuel to the engine. Another one can be that your accessory switch can be loose going to the fuel pump. I think its your ground though. Good luck! Hope this helps.
Have a nice day.