[SOLVED] - Turned out to be the rotor in the distributor. (see post 10)
So, I was driving and came to a stop at a red light, when the engine suddenly shut off. I tried to start it up again, but it would just crank but would not start up.
From what I've read, it seems the engine is either not getting fuel or spark, I dont think the issue is the fuel, since i can slightly smell gas under the hood after several attempts at starting. I haven't tested to see if the spark plugs are creating sparks (I will do this in the morning)
If the car doesnt have spark, what should be next? It seems the problem could then be a bad distributor which is several hundred for parts and labor.
I also read that it could just be the Crankshaft Position Sensor. I would like to replace this and test to see if that fixes it. Can someone tell me where the crankshaft position sensor is located? I'm fairly new to DIY repairs, should this be left for the professionals? also if you have any pics of the CPS location, I would really appreciate it.
Any help would be appreciated. Thanks in advance.
This is a 1999 Altima btw.
Last edited by bdarknessb; 07-01-2011 at 04:01 AM.
>It seems the problem could then be a bad distributor which is several hundred for parts and labor.
Been there done that. That's what started motivating it for me to DIY. Took it to an independent, who took me for $700 and a crappy aftermarket distributor. Had to take it back to dealership to get it right... for $900.
Afterwards, I found it that it's basically a few bolts and on a scale of 1 to 10, like a 1.5 in difficulty - in otherwords even the most clueless DIY should be able to handle it. Do yourself a favor and DIY this fix yourself. See my previous posts about getting a Hitachi/HAP reman, or a bones pull from a yard/ebay, *NOT* aftermarket garbage.
I will check the rotor in the morning, and if it does turn out to be the distributor, would something like this work Link
I can get that for about 150, and try and install myself.
Also, another thing to mention, while i was reading other articles on cars that crank but dont start, I came across the possibility that it could be caused by the MAP Sensor, the article mentioned that MAP Sensor can cause surge which i used to have at idle, and can also cause no-start. What do you guys think of this?
[QUOTE=bdarknessb;4137067]I will check the rotor in the morning, and if it does turn out to be the distributor, would something like this work Link
I would prefer that you stay with OEM - i.e. Hitachi/HAP - and probably Hitachi of those two. However, getting a dizzy from a local parts store does have it's advantages. We discussed cardone brand in the past, and I did some research on it, and they got mixed reviews on quality (although some of the guys in this forum like cardone). They do some sort of cheezy bench test at least - probably near worthless, but at least not DOA. If you don't mind a higher risk of defect, going local is probably ok, but don't be surprised if it is defective and you have to return for another - just be on the lookout for driveablity problems if it doesn't run right. Personally, I would rather roll the dice on a bones pull - or better yet a hitachi reman for $60 more and get the piece of mind.
Thank You everyone for your input. I really appreciate it. And Special thanks to "TerryInLeesburg"
The problem was the rotor after all. I opened the distributor cap and suddenly the screw from the from the rotor fell into the cap. The rotor was on, but the hole for the screw was not in position with the hole on the rotor. I had already bought a new rotor, so i figured i'd just install the new one. Started the car and it started up just fine.
I didnt however change the rotor cap, although i did purchase one, should i replace it or just return it?
On another note, rather than starting a new thread, figure i'd just ask here. When my car is idling in park, the RMPs surge anywhere between 1100-1500. The car has always had higher than usual RMPs since i bought it (about 1000 in drive and used to be 1500 in park). Could this be caused the MAP sensor or something else entirely?
Engine surging to me spells out an "intake manifold leak". The idle speed is sometimes adjusted to try and compensate for an intake leak. But that's not a good idea though, if you ask me. Just for kick though, check that the TPS is properly adjusted. Then fix the leak, readjust the idle speed, and recalibrate the ignition timing.
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