Question about 1998 Mazda MPV

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Engine wont start even with jump - 1998 Mazda MPV

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Got fuel? Sounds crazy but you'd be surprised how many times I have poured a gallon of gasoline into someones car to get it to start.

No start condition is the most frustrating problem. More information on what happens when you turn the key would help......but basicaly you need 4 things to make a car start. Fuel. Air. Spark. Timing. - oops - 5 things - A key! Sure you are using right key? Had a couple once who had matching chevys and they swapped their keys and didn't know it. The key has a chip in it and only works on that car. Crazy, but the keys fit and turned in both cars. (Almost matching serial numbers? never figured that one out). Anyway, sorry. Fuel, Air, Spark and Timing are needed to start/run. Asked about fuel, but is the fuel getting to the cylinder? Do you have fuel pressure at the fuel rail(s)? When you turn the key to the "On" or "Run" position, do you hear a whining sound coming from the rear (fuel tank area)? That is your fuel pump priming the system. No sound? Check fuses and relays associated with the fuel system. Air. You need air to the cylinder to make it start and run. Check your air intake and filter. Really clogged and dirty filter? Pull it out and try to start. No go? Put it back (change ASAP) and look for Spark. Spark includes battery. Are there any loose connections to/from your battery? Really corroded terminals? Clean and tighten the connections. Try to start. No go? Pull the spark plug wire off an easily accessible spark plug (grasp the "boot" as close to the plug as possible and wiggle back and forth easily while pulling - these boots and wire connectors are fairly delicate). Remove the spark plug (be careful and dont break it or cross thread it when putting back in) and pop the wire back on it and set the plug on top of your engine (away from the spark plug hole). Have someone try to start the engine. You should see the spark plug fire its tiny bright blue spark. If not, you have found your problem. The problem is likely a bad coil, bad coil wire, distributor cap, rotor or a combination of these. If you have spark, then it has come down to timing. There are lots of things that affect timing in modern cars. There are a couple of sensors that jump out - Crankshaft and Camshaft position sensors. These will generally quit working while driving and you will likely notice the problem beforehand with it running really rough and getting crappy mileage, and the check engine light will come on and give you all kinds of hints. IF you turn the key and nothing happens, it might be a broken timing belt, but again, those usually fail under working conditions. It is possible (rare) the timing belt slipped/broke when you last shut off the engine, but I would point at the other 3 things first (Fuel, Air & Spark). Hope this helps. Good luck.

Posted on Apr 22, 2014

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