Hard starting / excessive cranking - Ford Mustang Forum
 
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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-08-2005 Thread Starter
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Hard starting / excessive cranking

I have to crank my 1998 GT over for 6-8 seconds before it starts.

I have cleaned the IAC, cleaned the MAF, and changed the fuel filter. The problem has not changed at all. I have no check engine light, although I recently did, and it turned out to be the EVAP system, for which I replaced the purge valve and have not had a light since.

The car runs great once started, except for one small anomaly: When I have 1/4 of a tank or less of gas, sometimes when I go around a sharp curve the car acts like it is running out of gas, I guess because all the gas is on one side of the tank.

Any help would be appreciated. This problem is driving me nuts.
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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-08-2005
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Maybe your starter needs replacing? It's also possible you need
a new altinator?
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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-08-2005
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Hmm... sounds like the fuel pump to me. Try this, before you start the car, turn the key on for a couple seconds, then fire it up. In the past (before my new fuel pump and such) my car would crank longer if I just turned it to crank right away. How many miles do you have? Maybe you should check your fuel pressure at the rails while the car is at idle, it should be about 35 to 45 psi with the vaccum attached to the regulator and 50+ psi with the vaccum off. BTW inside the tank there is also a filter type strainer attached to the bottom of the pump, maybe that is clogged. Good luck and let us know what happens. :thumbup

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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-08-2005
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It should hold fuel pressure in the lines after the car is shut off so you don't have to crank it long when you start it. you need to hook up a fuel pressure gauge to it and let it sit to see if it bleeds off. A little drop (10 psi or so ) is normal. it could be the check valve in the pump, a leaking injector or line or the fuel pressure regulator.

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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-08-2005
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What is a normal crank time?

What would be considered a normal crank time for a mustang gt ? it seems that i might have the same problem.. it seems that it takes a while to start when its first starting up after sitting over night or for atleast quite a number of hours.. i havent timed it just yet ill have to do that.. the plugs have all been changed there's a new fuel filter as well
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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-08-2005
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2-3 seconds

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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-14-2005 Thread Starter
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I am still working on this problem, I have narrowed it down somewhat. I've figured out that I am not getting fuel pressure before cranking the key.

For instance, I turn the key to on and hear the fuel pump run for a couple of seconds, but there is no fuel pressure and there should be at least 30 psi. I suspect that the fuel pressure regulator is faulty and is allowing the fuel to run right through it into the return line. I will try to verify this within the next few days.
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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 10-27-2010
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1998 ford mustang 3.8l V6

trying to find advice on my 1998 3.8l V6 ford mustang
i have replaced the fuel filter, fuel pump, in tank fuel line,relay (due to wiring) and battery. car runs smooth once it is started but starts very rough have to crank on it to get it to start
fuel pressure is 28 when running and no pressure at all once i turn the key off
Any advice is welcome
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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 10-27-2010
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hard starting 1998 mustang

trying to find advice on my 1998 3.8l V6 ford mustang
i have replaced the fuel filter, fuel pump, in tank fuel line,relay (due to wiring) and battery. car runs smooth once it is started but starts very rough have to crank on it to get it to start
fuel pressure is 28 when running and no pressure at all once i turn the key off
Any advice is welcome

Battery brand new starter alternator and ignition module all tested good

check engine light for system too lean bank one and system too lean bank two
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Quote:
Originally Posted by firefighter8926 View Post
fuel pressure is 28 when running and no pressure at all once i turn the key off
The answer to your problem is right inside the post. Fuel pressure leak down. The fuel pressure has to remain at near normal levels while the engine is off so that the fuel pressure is up to normal levels very quickly. If the fuel pressure is leaking down to zero, the short period of time that the fuel pump primes before starting is not enough to return FP to normal levels.

Try cycling the key off/on/pause several times without cranking. Does this improve starting? If so, this all but confirms a lack of initial fuel pressure.

This is either a bad fuel pressure regulator. Bad fuel pump check valve. Or leaky fuel injector(s).

Consider using an injector cleaning/flow test service such as injectorrx.com.

Quote:
Originally Posted by firefighter8926 View Post
check engine light for system too lean bank one and system too lean bank two
Please do yourself and those of us trying to help you a favor. Go to your local autoparts store and have the DTC codes read. Post the full DTC codes. There are 1000's of codes and each have their own story to tell.

OBTW, more often than not, a lean code is caused by a vacuum leak. Are you aware that a vacuum leak can also cause a hard start?

Finally, this was posted in the 4.6 section. It may get more eyeballs if posted in the V6 secton.

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if the air intake hose is off and we play with the throttle under the hood it starts quickly but the moment we put the intake hose back on it dies
when i try to crank the engine over with everything the way it is supposed to be it cranks but will not start it sounds like the engine is coughing at the throttle body
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Have you CLEANED the MAF? Use only a product designed for the job. Never use brake clean or carb/choke cleaner.

Check all fuses in the engine bay and driver's kick panel.

Confirm there is +12 volts on the IAC red wire with the key on. If not, STOP and find out why.

What are the results of the other requested "tests"?

On a fuel injected engine, trying to run the motor with the intake tube disconnected is a bad thing. This completely bypasses the air metering provided by the MAF. Stop trying to start the car with the intake disconnected as it is not helping to resolve the issue.

What happens if you hold the throttle half way open during cranking/starting? Does this improve starting? If so, suspect a bad IAC.

What happens if you attempt to start with the MAF electrical connector disconnected?

Any other mods or other "issues" with this car? Something that would make the base motor suspect? Have you run a compression test?

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Wink solution to the problem of hard starting

I had the same problem on my 2000 mustang 3.8. I did the usual things like change the plugs and fuel filter but that did not help. It always cranked for 5 to 8 seconds before starting after it had been sitting a while.
The problem long cranking or hard starting problem turned out to be a leak in the hose going from the fuel pump to the fuel tank flange (in the tank). This is a special flex hose that had a pin hole in it. It allowed the pressure to bleed down after a few minutes. You need to drop the tank and remove the flange on the top of the tank to get access to it. I simply replaced the hose with a high quality fuel injector rubber hose and 2 worm screw clamps.
To verify this is the problem put a fuel pressure gauge on the Schrader valve (tire valve stem type of valve) on the fuel rail. (front left corner of the engine on a 3.8 Liter engine). The pressure should be about 30 psi and 40 when just turn the key on. Newer engines do not have this Schrader valve and you will need to put an adapter in the line somewhere by opening one of the spring clamp fittings... maybe at the fuel filter or on the engine somewhere so you can measure the pressure. You need a special tool to release the spring clamp fittings available at most auto parts stores for a few bucks. I suggest undoing the output line of the fuel filter and slide your pressure gauge onto the fuel filter outlet and then turn the key on to test the pressure. It should remain at 30 psi after you turn the key off.
If you have a problem you will note the pressure will bleed down after you turn the key off.
If it bleeds down it could only be 3 things. A leaky injector, a bad check valve in the fuel pump or a leak in the hose ... which was my problem. The pressure should be maintained for a long time (in the order of days) after turning the key off.
As a work around to keep from cranking so long and killing your starter and battery you can cycle the key on and off a few times to charge the rail before starting. This will give you time to prepare.... and get the tank empty so you can drop the tank easily.
If you need to replace the fuel pump Napa sells the fuel pump by itself for $152. Most other auto parts do not stock it.
Good Luck.
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