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Questions tagged [ignition]

For questions related to the process and components that generate the spark that ignites the fuel-air mixture in gasoline engines.

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21 votes
4 answers
25k views

How does the car's ECU detect a misfire?

I was wondering what the specific mechanism used by car ECU's to detect misfires is, or are if there is more than one method.
Robert S. Barnes's user avatar
17 votes
7 answers
55k views

How exactly does running fuel-lean increase the temperature of ignition?

I learned in this question that running an engine fuel-lean will increase the temperature of ignition, among other things such as causing problems with the catalytic converter. I have no idea how or ...
Max Goodridge's user avatar
15 votes
12 answers
121k views

Couldn't start my Volvo due to Key Error. Called assistance and he fixed it by hitting the key with a screwdriver. What could be the error?

My Volvo S40 (06) would not start when I turned the ignition key. I got a message that was somewhat like "Key Error, please try again". I tried with both my keys so it wasn't the key itself. I think I ...
FeatureCreep's user avatar
14 votes
5 answers
64k views

What Color Should the Spark Be When Using a Spark Tester?

If I'm using a spark tester with an adjustable gap set to the correct gap for my car's ignition system voltage, what should the spark look like? I ask because I've seen conflicting opinions on this ...
Robert S. Barnes's user avatar
12 votes
2 answers
4k views

Is there a measurable benefit to replacing spark plug wires?

My 92 Civic has very old spark plug wires, probably original, but their resistance is in-spec (under 20k ohms), they have no external damage, and the vehicle has no misfire or other symptoms ...
R.. GitHub STOP HELPING ICE's user avatar
11 votes
2 answers
26k views

My Ignition Timing is Retarded, no seriously, it's really screwed up

I logged some test data to try and help me figure out why my 98 Mazda 626 GF 2L ATX has a rough idle and is suffering from hesitation. (Speed k/h),(TPS_v),(MAF g/sec),(RPM),(SparkAdvance),(EngineLoad)...
Robert S. Barnes's user avatar
10 votes
2 answers
3k views

What is the most cost-efficient solution when door keys do not fit ignition?

I know similar questions have been asked but I'm specifically looking for the most cost efficient way to solve the following problem. I have a 2006 Lexus RX400h for which the physical door key does ...
Carnoob's user avatar
  • 111
10 votes
3 answers
61k views

How to diagnose the cause of no power reaching the spark plugs when power reaches everything else, after checking fuses?

I've been trying to get my long-suffering Toyota RAV4 first generation (1998) to start after numerous different problems, the latest of which I've narrowed to the spark plugs not firing seemingly due ...
user56reinstatemonica8's user avatar
9 votes
10 answers
12k views

How can I disable my 2002 Ford Explorer so someone with a key can't start it? [closed]

A person at my house continually moves my 2002 Ford Explorer from the driveway to the street without permission. The key is shared and must remain easily accessible. Personal issues aside, is there a ...
dave's user avatar
  • 107
9 votes
2 answers
17k views

What can I do with an Inline Spark Tester?

Due to my recent problem with weakly firing plugs, I'm looking at inline spark testers. I've seen three basic types: The simple flashing one which goes in between the wire and plug with the plug in ...
Robert S. Barnes's user avatar
9 votes
3 answers
2k views

2007 BMW Z4 won't start when my phone is plugged into the cigarette lighter plug

Sometimes when my cell phone is on charge in my 2007 BMW Z4 before I start it, nothing happens when I turn the key. The car is acting like it, as if I did not have the clutch pushed in - the key ...
Luke's user avatar
  • 193
9 votes
1 answer
15k views

Acceptable amount of slack in a timing chain with high mileage?

1995 Chevy S-10 Blazer - 4.3 L Vortec V6 (vin W with PCM) - 230,000 miles original owner. FWIW, this model car/engine does not have timing chain inspection and/or changing as part of the routine ...
Sparky's user avatar
  • 476
8 votes
4 answers
100k views

Corrosion on battery, won't start, making clicking noise, won't charge

I'm trying to charge the battery on my 2002 Celica. Here is some background: Battery is a bit old, around 3 years or so. Corrosion has been building on the battery to the point that it almost cannot ...
Eric Conklin's user avatar
8 votes
4 answers
11k views

2000 Honda Civic Won't Start after Replacing spark Plugs

My 2000 honda civic ex 4-dr sedan seemed like it was misfiring. I decided to check the spark plugs to see if that was the issue. I replaced the spark plugs. The car would turn over however the ...
Alex's user avatar
  • 81
8 votes
3 answers
5k views

Car won't start, possibly due to ants in batteries

Yesterday there were a ton of ants crawling out of some hole in my backseat. I sprayed the them to death. This morning, when I try to start the ignition, my engine clicks a lot but won't turn over. ...
ryye's user avatar
  • 183
8 votes
2 answers
5k views

What Could Cause Flash Over / Arcing to Reappear on New Plugs?

I had been having some hesitation problems on my 98 Mazda 626 which after a great deal of research seemed to be solved by replacing the plugs: As you can see, there seems to be signs of flash over / ...
Robert S. Barnes's user avatar
8 votes
2 answers
6k views

2003 Honda Accord - Intermittent no start/no crank

2003 Honda Accord, everything lights up fine but it has a really strange “groaning” noise, kinda quietly. Then after a few tries it starts up perfectly fine. Sometimes it starts up first time, ...
Yrast's user avatar
  • 181
8 votes
2 answers
94k views

OBD II power when key not in ignition

I can't get to the OBD connector on my car at the moment. As far as I know the OBD II voltage is active even when the key is in lock. Can anyone confirm this? edit : It's for a product that will be ...
SeanJ's user avatar
  • 533
8 votes
2 answers
2k views

Key won't turn in Honda Fit after ignition cylinder repair

Malfunctioning locks seem to be common with Hondas that have laser-cut keys. After lots of research and tutorials on repairing the ignition cylinder I was able to remove the cylinder, extract the ...
Sea Citadel's user avatar
8 votes
1 answer
8k views

How to check if spark plugs are firing? Coil-on plugs

While trying to diagnose a tricky car not starting problem I was asked to check if the spark plugs were firing at all. I've found plenty of resources on inspecting the condition of spark plugs after ...
user56reinstatemonica8's user avatar
8 votes
1 answer
3k views

Is there a way to test ignition coils with built-in ICM?

My car's service manual shows this for the ignition coils: What is the ICM? Related to https://mechanics.stackexchange.com/a/2850/31, is there a way to check the coils to see if they are working ...
endolith's user avatar
  • 1,351
8 votes
3 answers
9k views

94 Z28 LT1 Camaro. Intermittent stalling/starting problem. Been haunting me forever

94 Z28 LT1 Camaro. Intermittent stalling/starting problem. Been haunting me forever. Typically my car will start fine when it's been sitting overnight. Then I'll drive to the gym which is 2 miles away....
Nick M's user avatar
  • 83
8 votes
4 answers
7k views

1997 Dodge Grand Caravan not starting, mystery wires?

1997 Dodge GC with 180k miles, has been sitting for maybe 6 months after being driven a little, and now it won't start. cranks fine, all electronics work, but doesn't fire. I checked there is fuel ...
dave thieben's user avatar
7 votes
2 answers
2k views

Distinguishing between mechanical and electrical failure in ignition diagnosis

After a month and a half of not driving the car, yesterday I tried to turn it on, however the only sound that I heard was the rotation of the starter, which is not engaging the flywheel (the engine is ...
Ziezi's user avatar
  • 600
7 votes
2 answers
4k views

Key Doesn't come out of Town and Country

A few days ago I could not get my keys out of my 2005 Town and Country. Soon after, the battery ran out of juice. If I jump the battery, I can start the car and drive it. But when I park the vehicle I ...
Sam's user avatar
  • 91
7 votes
3 answers
2k views

Single-cylinder engine - no camshaft position sensor?

I'm doing some research on the Honda CRF450. This is a single-cylinder engine. I'm interested in the fuel-injected models (not the older carbureted versions). As far as I can tell, this engine doesn'...
Greg d'Eon's user avatar
7 votes
2 answers
2k views

Ducati Monster M600 - Engine Vibration/Cold Cylinder

I have a 1995 Ducati Monster M600. Recently I noticed an engine vibration and whilst trying to figure it out I noticed that the horizontal cylinder exhaust is hot (hot enough to burn leather gloves) ...
Mauro's user avatar
  • 2,655
7 votes
2 answers
62k views

Spark plug gaps - manufacturer or shop manual recomendation?

So I have a 2000 Ford Ranger XLT 4.0L V6 OHV Engine and I recently replaced the spark plugs. The thing is, the original recommended spark plugs have a gap of 0.52-0.56, which is what is recommended in ...
Paul's user avatar
  • 509
7 votes
1 answer
421 views

1973 CB350-four, no spark on 1 and 4 when it's cold

When this bike is cold the 1st and 4th cylinders do not fire. Pulling the plugs and checking them, there is not spark. If you get the bike hot, it runs really bad on the way there, 1 and 4 come back....
Ppoggio's user avatar
  • 1,487
7 votes
2 answers
41k views

What do you do with dielectric grease on spark plugs?

There seems to be a lot of conflicting answers on what you're supposed to do with dielectric grease. The instructions on the grease I bought says to squeeze it into the boot, but everywhere I've read ...
Kevin Evans's user avatar
  • 1,186
7 votes
2 answers
4k views

2004 Saturn ION with Ecotec 2.2: Engine misfire with code P0300, ICM problem?

Car came in with a misfire complaint and check engine light on with code p0300. Looking at misfire history confirms high misfire counts on cylinders 1 and 4 along with lower counts on cylinders 2 &...
Ben's user avatar
  • 10.7k
7 votes
6 answers
31k views

Chronic ignition problems with 1996 Suburban, replacing distributor cap makes it go away

I'm trying to diagnose an ongoing ignition problem with a 1996 Chevy Suburban. Sometimes it won't start, and the previous owner said this happens regularly, and every time the problem occurred, ...
R.. GitHub STOP HELPING ICE's user avatar
7 votes
1 answer
1k views

Finding a constant and non constant power wire in a car

The car I have is a 2001 Buick century. I have a after market push to start kit. It came with a main unit and the diagram shows that a brown wire is for a constant power when the engine is on. And a ...
Andre's user avatar
  • 71
6 votes
1 answer
923 views

How Common are Voltage Drop Problems?

After watching this video on voltage drop, it makes me feel like testing the resistance of various sensors and accessories with my multi-meter isn't really a reliable test of anything, since I can see ...
Robert S. Barnes's user avatar
6 votes
1 answer
607 views

Effects of shutting off Nissan altima (or any car) while in drive

Every now and then when I get home after a long day, I pull into my driveway and while the car is stopped (foot on the brake), I turn the vehicle off without putting the vehicle in "Park". Car is ...
IT_User's user avatar
  • 225
6 votes
4 answers
4k views

Emissions Problem: Lambda AND CO Slightly High on my 98 Mazda 626

I just took my 98 Mazda 626 for it's inspection and they said the carbon monoxide is slightly high. The test is done using a tail pipe gas analyzer while holding the RPMs between 2500 - 2800 for ...
Robert S. Barnes's user avatar
6 votes
1 answer
4k views

Are There any Benefits to a High Voltage Coil Pack?

I'm considering replacing the coil pack on my 98 mazda 626 GF 2L, and am looking at a standard replacement at about $15, a standard replacement with 10 year warranty for about $21, and a "high ...
Robert S. Barnes's user avatar
6 votes
1 answer
2k views

I dropped my bike and now it won't start

I have a Suzuki GSX600F Katana. Yesterday, I changed the clutch lever on the handlebar and left the key on. I had to push start my bike. After getting it started, I left it in first gear, and let go ...
Cedric. Goodacre's user avatar
6 votes
1 answer
88 views

2008 Grand Prix GPX

What spark plug should I be using? I did my own tune up and the guy at auto advance told me to get some Bosch spark plugs for my car but then I notice less power. A mechanic told me I shouldn't have ...
08GPGXP's user avatar
  • 61
6 votes
1 answer
13k views

Engine revs to 4000 RPM without pressing gas pedal

I tried to start my car today but something strange keeps on happening. It turns on just fine, but once the engine is operating it starts revving to 4000 RPM even though I am not pressing the gas ...
hello_world_daniel's user avatar
6 votes
3 answers
24k views

Methods of diagnosing a non-starting Fiat Uno

I have a little Uno inherited from my dad. Just before he passed away he was having trouble getting it to start, and before that, having it die on a drive somewhere, even close. I would now like to ...
ProfK's user avatar
  • 465
6 votes
1 answer
39 views

Mercedes E-350, 2006 sedan ignition problem

I own a Mercedes e-350 2006 sedan whose ignition box was vandalized and taken away by vandals. I could not start this car since then and I thought of buying a used ignition box to use on the car with ...
Ben Aga's user avatar
  • 61
6 votes
1 answer
7k views

Jeep stalls after about 10-15 minutes driving or idling

1996 Jeep Grand Cherokee Limited This just started yesterday. Instance#1: After about 10-15 of driving (note: It had been about 12 hrs since it was last used) I was waiting at a traffic light when ...
Tek'eek's user avatar
  • 83
6 votes
3 answers
2k views

2005 Dodge Caravan - Erratic Misfire

The engine was misfiring for quite a while. At some point, the battery went dead due to a bad alternator and all the electrical systems went nuts. I replaced the alternator & battery. At some ...
Larry's user avatar
  • 61
5 votes
7 answers
33k views

what happens when you hit engine button on a keyless ignition?

My car is a keyless ignition and as such just has a button I press to have it start. My question is... what happens if I hit it while I'm driving?
neubert's user avatar
  • 551
5 votes
4 answers
6k views

97 Honda Accord won't start after head gasket replacement

I recently replaced the head gasket on my Honda Accord. The cylinder head was tested at a machine shop and they also replaced the valve seals. I didn't do any work to the cylinders, except use ...
willpb's user avatar
  • 310
5 votes
2 answers
12k views

Diesel engine timing?

A petrol engine can fire the spark plugs slightly earlier or later to account for factors like revolution speed and engine temperature. However a diesel only fires when the mixture is compressed. ...
Criggie's user avatar
  • 2,978
5 votes
2 answers
5k views

What are the disadvantages of wasted spark ignition? (Consider single cylinder engine)

In four stroke engines, spark occurs twice in one complete cycle i.e. at compression TDC and exhaust TDC (In some vehicles, there is a MAP sensor to identify the compression TDC. In such vehicles ...
Sameer Deshmukh's user avatar
5 votes
5 answers
5k views

Can a heavy key-chain damage your ignition?

I just bought a 2012 VW Jetta TDI. The dealer asked me to do a 2,000 mile check-up to make sure everything is within tolerances. At the check-up the service representative said my key-chain was too ...
Copas's user avatar
  • 53
5 votes
3 answers
11k views

Start a circuit or device when you insert key in car ignition

I want to start a circuit in my car when I insert my key in car ignition and let it turn off when the key gets removed. I have Honda Civic 2007. Can someone just help me out as to from where do I take ...
Humayun's user avatar
  • 153

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