So I'm round my old dears and park on her drive. She needs to move my car (a 2002 Renault Clio V6 3.0) off the drive to get her car out. She gets in, reverses it and stalls it. Starts up again and she parks it on the drive.

She does her shopping, comes back and needs to move the cars over. So again, she gets in, starts the car up and instantly stalls it. She's not sure whether the car stalled by itself or she had the clutch up too high (she's only small you see).

Anyway, now it won't start at all. It just turns over and over (turns over fast, not sloooowly). Sometimes it sounds like it's about to fire and start up but falls over again. It doesn't sound like a dead battery, lights etc are all fine too.

After some reading I've read it could be the fuel pump, on turning the key the second time I do hear a noise from the back (presumably the fuel pump) and have checked some fuses and relays and they seem fine. I say "some" as I can't accurately identify any as the manual only has the fuses internally. I've read the yellow relay in the front fuse box under the bonnet is the fuse, we've taken that out and could still hear the fuel pump activate (if that's what it is).

I'm really bad with cars unfortunately as you can probably tell. So we've tried turning it over, I can smell fuel but no success. I don't want to keep doing it in case something else screws, we've run tests on OBD II code readers and no faults are found.

I'm also aware the car may be flooded, but it's been over a day now and still no luck, I was hoping overnight the problem would "disappear" but unfortunately not.

Any help please?

UPDATE: Well, unfortunately, foot to the floor and cracking it hasn't worked so I'm up for other suggestions :) Got a feeling I will be getting towed to Renault and have to pay a very expensive bill!

  • 1
    Welcome Ricky. If you can smell fuel when cranking, i'd surmise the fuel pump is likely OK. Make/model/year?
    – mac
    Commented Feb 11, 2013 at 20:07

2 Answers 2


Well we solved it. We think it was due to flooding, but we needed to clean the spark plugs. They were pretty dirty so my brother took them out, cleaned them up and put them back. He then hooked up my car battery to his and started the car, after a bit of a grumble she started.

A load of muck came out of the exhaust but since she's been absolutely fine and starts first time. Thanks for your help.


If it's a recent car [e.g: it has electronic fuel injection, not a carb], floor the pedal and try to crank it with the pedal floored.

It must be WOT. -- On fuel injected cars it's reading fuel/spark from a table.

Flooring the pedal will force the computer to try flood clear mode, where it will spark but cut the fuel. (Counter-intuitive, I know, but opening the throttle won't add fuel during cranking when an EFI car starts. It will open the throttle and then add fuel immediately after, so be sure to pull your foot off as soon as it's going so it doesn't redline.)

If it is really flooded this should help start it.

This happens a lot on my car, especially if I stall it in first.

  • Thanks for the reply, what is WOT? A Google tells me wide open throttle? I haven't done this as of yet as I've read so many contradictions that this can actually make the problem worse, but with your suggestion and a mechanics I spoke too, it seems a good next step...
    – Ricky
    Commented Feb 11, 2013 at 20:37
  • And the car/model: It's Renault Clio V6 3.0, 2002
    – Ricky
    Commented Feb 11, 2013 at 20:39
  • WOT - you mean foot to the floor... I said I was bad with cars :D.
    – Ricky
    Commented Feb 11, 2013 at 20:44
  • 1
    @Robbie I've never heard of this operating mode before. Can you point me to any additional information on this (e.g. from Bosch, a common ECU manufacturer)?
    – mac
    Commented Feb 11, 2013 at 21:54
  • 2
    MegaSquirt talks about it in detail: megamanual.com/v22manual/mtune.htm#howto There's a Ford discussion about it: fordforum.com/forum/ford-ranger-16/cold-starting-problem-7212 It's also a suggested procedure in the owners manual for most Toyota's [Vehicle will not start]: toyota.com/t3Portal/document/om/OM33528U/pdf/4.pdf Also it's worth remembering: the ECU controls fuel and spark in an EFI vehicle. You only control air intake [via throttle].
    – Robbie
    Commented Feb 12, 2013 at 16:31

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .