Question about 2001 Mercury Sable
My 2001 Sable starts up most of the time with no problem. But lately it will intermittently not start. It bucks for a few seconds and then cuts out. If I wait an hour or so, it will then start. The mechanic kept it for over a day and was able to start it many times. However, several days later, it would not start and I had to have it towed. Then it started working again with no problems. Mechanic says that it could be many things and can't fix until it breaks again.
I have read that the fuel pump could be the problem. I recently had my cam position sensor and synchronizer replaced. Battery checks out fine.
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Posted on Jan 02, 2017
There is a condition called thermal breakdown in ignition parts( ie: spark control modules). Pretty common really in older stuff. Why does it happen only after shutdown? because of a condition called heat soak. underhood temps rise higher than ever right after shutdown. Your ignition module is mounted to the side of the distributor. If practical when the problem happens pour cold water on the module give it one minute and see if it starts(wont damage it) if it starts right up you proved it bad. Hope I helped Thanks
Posted on Apr 06, 2009
You describe this as an acceleration problem however, if the car does throw a check engine light it should be recorded in system memory so it can be pulled by scanning with and OBDII scanner. It sounds as if the car is being starved for fuel on acceleration. Check the fuel lines for kinks as well as check the fuel pressure. The problem could be a faulty fuel pump that has yet to completely die.
Posted on May 21, 2009
check the fuel pump relay! It sounds like it is one of your relays. If it was an electrical or sensor problem, the check engine light would be on.
Posted on May 22, 2009
SOURCE: My 94 sable 3.8 will
(fuel, spark, compression)? ---
engine needs three key ingredients to operate: 1) fuel (there has to be something to burn), 2) a spark to ignite the fuel, and 3) some way for the fuel to meet the spark and ignite a fire--this is the compression. Compressing fuel in a confined cylinder inside the engine, then introducing a spark from a spark plug will produce a small explosion. This explosion process is what generates horsepower.
What are the things that cause the engine to turn over? The battery and the starter are the two most important. If the headlights are on and are bright, then we could probably assume the battery is up to snuff and doing its job. The starter takes electricity from the battery and turns the engine over to start the piston explosion process I described earlier. So in this case there is probably a problem with the starter, or something is hampering the electricity from the battery to the engine or starter (maybe burned or damaged wiring or a bad ground connection).
The other type of "no start" occurs when the engine turns over like it is trying to start but will not start. So the battery and the starter are doing their jobs, but we are lacking one of the main exploding ingredients. Is there fuel? Look at the gauge first (we still get cars towed in to the shop and the no start correction is adding gas to the tank!) Do you have compression? Does the engine sound like it is turning over fully, or does the engine sound like it is turning over too fast or too slow? A broken timing belt or timing chain will cause the engine to turn over very easily and very fast because the compression process is not taking place.Is there spark? This is not as easy to determine as it sounds, and can require some tools and experience to test. Now you probably don't care to "do it yourself" from here on out, but at least you have ruled out the battery, the starter, and a lack of fuel in the tank. This little bit of effort on your part saves the mechanic a lot of time trying to guess what happened and why, and you might actually find the problem yourself.
Is the car in PARK? I have been to many roadside assists only to find out the car is still in DRIVE. The engine will only start in park and neutral. Do you have an anti-theft device, and is it working properly? If it is a stick shift, do you have the clutch pedal depressed? Are the front tires up against the curb? Sometimes it is very hard to turn the key if the front tires are in a bind on a curb, or if the car has rolled back a bit after it was placed in PARK. If this is the case, you can turn the steering wheel real hard to the right, or try to physically move or rock the car forward to release the key.
Ok then if the starter is good the problem must be a bad connection at the starter or low voltage from the ignition switch. You will need to check this with a meter while trying to start the engine. It does not need to be cranking to check for power, just attach a meter to one of the terminals and the other to ground and see what it reads. One other possibility would be a bad ground to the starter, the starter grounds through the case but usually there is a battery ground on one of the starter bolts so you might check to see if that is good and clean.
There are two terminals on the starter, one large on small, you need to be sure both of these have full battery power when trying to start.
You just need to check where the wires are connected, there is a large wire, from the battery and a small wire from the ignition switch. run a wire from solenoid to positive terminal on battery with ignition on car started. and check out if you get reading in the meter that means the solenoid is working, it probably means there is not power to that solenoid from the ignition switch (black/red wire). You will need to check black/dark blue wire into the neutral safety switch (on the top of the transmission) if that wire has power check the black/red wire on the neutral safety switch. If there is no power there the neutral safety switch is bad.
if you car is manual trans-axle then there will no neutral switch but the Starter Clutch Pedal Position Switch .
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Posted on Feb 10, 2010
Testimonial: "thanks for all the information. tried tapping on the starter. nothing happened."
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