Question about 1994 Jeep Wrangler

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'94 Wrangler has unstable starting issue.. I have to turn on the key and wait (wait time directly corresponds to outside temp, IE; the colder it is outside, the longer the wait time) for the fuel pump to kick on ( which is then followed by the fast 'tick tick tick' of the fuel pump relay ), once cycled, I can then attempt to start. On a nice, warm day of say 65, it immediately starts the cycle. On a cold morning of 30-40.. I have waited up to an hour. I've cleaned the 3 main grounds thinking inline with the temp expansion factor loosing ground, but to no avail. * recently replaced the cap, rotor, wires and coil.

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  • Brad Thomas Apr 24, 2010

    I've already checked all the grounds and they're all solid. Even the ground wires/straps are all in good shape.

  • Brad Thomas Apr 25, 2010

    Ok, today I had a friend come over to see what he could figure out ( retired AMC Tech ) and we ran some various tests. Checked grounds, jumped relays ( to attempt shorting ), etc etc.. Ultimately... we tried the Hair Dryer test.. held a hair dryer to the EMC for a min or so and she came right to life. In his opinion, there must be a small solder break within the EMC that varies with the current temp. When you turn on the key, the current running through the various components within the unit slowly warm it until the 'break' reconnects. So I guess I'm now on the search for a replacement EMC.... o joy.

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  • Jeep Master
  • 6,982 Answers

Sounds like you are likely doing the right thing but didn't go far enough. Clean up all the sub-grounds, like the one on the block about 6" to the left of the distributor, the strap between the engine and firewall and any you find on the fenders, especially near the computer.
On all mine, I run a continuous 10gauge ground wire from the battery to all those points and through the firewall to the dash frame. (on boats it's called bonding).
I don't know if it really matters but I have never run into problems created by poor grounding on any Jeep I have including ones I use off-road!
You could try that ...it won't hurt anything and may help you,.

Posted on Apr 24, 2010

  • 1 more comment 
  • Richard Scordino Apr 24, 2010

    OK...you said you cleaned the three main grounds. I mentioned all the sub-grounds.(there are usually around five more besides the main ones) Have you checked the connection under the power distribution center to make sure the ground is connecting to the relay?

  • Richard Scordino Apr 25, 2010

    Before giving up on the one you have look carefully at all the pin connectors (plugs and pins) If one is slightly corroded you can have the same exact problem and it will react the same way to the hair dryer. Be aware that on those connectors, oxidation (corrosion) does not appear as a white powdery substance as with ordinary items such as battery terminals or connections. The pin will blacken instead. Also worth looking at is the wire connection to each pin. often they can corrode inside the plug and you will not see it. Glad to see you have narrowed it down a bit though!

  • Richard Scordino Apr 25, 2010

    Here is a diagram from a 94 cherokee. http://www.scribd.com/doc/18999822/Jeep-... it may help you locate the pins you want to check. If I remember correctly the harnesses are very similar to yours.

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