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car died on hiway won't restart


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28 replies to this topic

#1 Tahoe Subaru

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Posted 27 November 2009 - 09:25 PM

2001 Legacy obw 2.5 manual trans.
while traveling at 50 MPH car lost power and died. had it towed home. I have a running parts car. so decided to swap some parts and sensors, checked the fuel pump first. it appears to pump fuel at the filter, next clamped the return line. didn't start so I switched pumps. still no start. its has spark. I squirted some fuel into the throttle body and the starter ran faster but no start. I switch cam sensor. no start. I'm going to check the timing belt marks tomorrow. the belt is turning.
any ideas?
P.S. codes are
Knock sensor
misfire random

Edited by Tahoe Subaru, 27 November 2009 - 09:29 PM.


#2 ericem

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Posted 27 November 2009 - 10:11 PM

betting on the timing belt jumping.

#3 grossgary

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Posted 27 November 2009 - 10:40 PM

How many miles and has the timing belt ever been replaced? THis is an interference engine if the belt breaks you'll incur severe engine damage. Best to replace the belt and pulleys on time.

If you have check engine lights your best bet is to start there.

Best to clear them an see which one returns.

Baring that, the two issues you have are very common.

Knock sensor - covered a zillion times on here, replace it, follow directions given in other knock, sensor threads, search for those. Includes all pictures and details from Subaru.

"misfire random" is the actual code? i've never heard of that one. usually it's cylinder #3 misfire or something like that.

anyway - probably plugs, wires, or coil - again, very common.

again - mileage and have the plugs/wires ever been changed?

Plugs should be OEM NGK and wires should be Subaru, these engines are not forgiving with aftermarket wires.

As a matter of fact if you have after market wires, that could be your problem. I've seen a no start before with brand new wires (aftermarkets) on EJ engines.

#4 Tahoe Subaru

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Posted 27 November 2009 - 11:18 PM

it has 98,000 miles. misfire code was for cylinder #2, would the knock sensor cause the car to die and not restart? Plugs were changed. don't know the maintenance history. possible wiring problems. battery terminals were changed to crappy clamp on. but it was running fine, there is spark on all four wires.
thanks for the suggestions. I'm going to check it out.

Edited by Tahoe Subaru, 27 November 2009 - 11:32 PM.


#5 grossgary

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Posted 28 November 2009 - 12:34 AM

EJ engines are picky about ignition stuff, i'm not making that up or exaggerating. If you have a no start and engine code it's hard for me to ignore that fact. I'm not sure what makes them so finnicky but having spark means nothing - like I said I've seen brand new wires, right out of the box be nearly undrivable - misfire codes and massive bucking - I'm sure new wires have spark, it's something else the EJ's don't like. A no-start on unknown wires sounds totally reasonable to me.

I've never seen a knock sensor cause a no-start/no-run but maybe it's way off and retarding timing? should run fine with it unplugged.

If it's bad, you'll need to replace it anyway, so do it I guess?

#6 davebugs

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Posted 28 November 2009 - 09:17 AM

As GG says they are a bit "moody" about ignition components.

And the knock sensor won't cause it to quit running, or not start. Just for it to run crappy.

What brand is the coil pack?

Wires?

Regular NGK green plugs or something exotic?

Start there and the folks here will try and help you out.

As a public service - don't buy ANY aftermarket ignition parts for a 2.5 (NGK plugs are OEM, Diamond coil packs I believe can be OEM).

#7 Cougar

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Posted 28 November 2009 - 10:32 AM

I suggest you get some starting fluid, spray some into the intake and see if the engine will fire up then. If that doesn't work then you may want to check the compression to see how that is.

#8 Gnuman

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Posted 29 November 2009 - 05:15 PM

Tahoe, I suspect the coil pack dying slowly (or at the end of it's rope). '01 is when they went ti the igniter being part of the coil pack, and they have had a few issues. Also, I repair these cars for a living (mobile repair) and I'm close to you (well, within range anyway). PM me if you need another head under the hood or tools. I'm about due for a road trip anyway. . .

#9 Fairtax4me

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Posted 01 December 2009 - 12:28 AM

Funny things these wasted spark ignition systems.

You may have spark on all 4, but the question is, is that spark occuring inside the combustion chamber? Compression makes it harder for the spark to jump the gap in the plug. The spark is then discharged entirely through the opposite side of the coil, into the cylinder that has no compression. Resulting in a no start situation. The spark may be there, but it doesn't have enough behind it to jump the gap in the plug when under compression.

Try swapping in a known good coil pack and see what you get out of it.

#10 ericem

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Posted 01 December 2009 - 09:05 PM

Another good thing to try which I have heard before is hit the MAF sensor and see if it starts!

#11 kelsomcgath

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Posted 01 December 2009 - 10:56 PM

i would just say make sure and check the timing belt.
i've been in two different subys, including one of mine, and that happened due to timing belt.

-kelsey

#12 Tahoe Subaru

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Posted 02 December 2009 - 10:59 AM

replaced coil last night. no change. I haven't had a lot of time to work on this. going to check timing belt marks and compression next. this happened to the previous owner. was towed to the dealer, they changed battery terminals. can't get much info from the dealer about what they did. but the car was running fine for awhile
thanks for the info

#13 nipper

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Posted 02 December 2009 - 03:27 PM

Go back and put all the original parts back on the car. NEVER just change parts willie-nillie in an attempt to solve a problem without proper diagnostics. You can make things worse, to almost impossible to find the problem.


Now if the car just stalled on the highway you can rule out fuel issues. Why everyone blames the fuel system first is beyond me, as on sooby's they are trouble free way beyond 200,000 miles.

Do you have spark?

Have you checked the codes?

My gut is telling me something went wrong with the valve drivetrain. This could be a timing belt, a cam gear, or worse.

Other possabilities are dead crank or cam sensor, a bad engine temp sensor.

nipper

#14 Cougar

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Posted 02 December 2009 - 03:48 PM

Now if the car just stalled on the highway you can rule out fuel issues. Why everyone blames the fuel system first is beyond me, as on sooby's they are trouble free way beyond 200,000 miles.

nipper


This isn't necessarily true in all cases. It happened to me one day while driving 50 MPH. The car just died off while driving on the road. The fuel pump just went out on it. This happened to my '88 GL-10 MPFI turbo wagon. Mileage on the car was about 88k miles at the time. I will say though that having something happen to the engine has a better chance of occuring than the fuel pump going out in most cases.

Edited by Cougar, 02 December 2009 - 06:00 PM.


#15 nipper

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Posted 02 December 2009 - 03:52 PM

This isn't necessarily true in all cases. It happened to me one day while driving 50 MPH. The car just died off while driving on the road. The fuel pump just went out on it. This was happened to my '88 GL-10 MPFI turbo wagon. Mileage on the car was about 88k miles at the time. I will say though that having something happen to the engine has a better chance of occuring than the fuel pump going out in most cases.



Ive had them go out on my 1981, but that doesnt mean i am going to compare that a newer generation sooby. Thats just silly. I have also had them go out in a 69 rambler while driving. Just a newer gen sooby it is rare for them to just die instantly.

:lol:

#16 Tahoe Subaru

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Posted 02 December 2009 - 05:15 PM

the last 3 cars to leave me stranded have been fuel pumps. my Dodge diesel is on its 3rd fuel pump in 80K miles. just changed it last month. Last year my BMW died at the post office. it was the fuel pump. and many years ago I had a Subaru gl10 that had an intermittent fuel pump that left me stranded a few times. but on this car it is not the fuel pump.

Edited by Tahoe Subaru, 02 December 2009 - 05:31 PM.


#17 ericem

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Posted 02 December 2009 - 11:23 PM

Try hitting the maf sensor comon lol if it works ill laugh like other times I have tried. :lol: Although probably the timing belt.....

#18 nipper

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Posted 02 December 2009 - 11:32 PM

the last 3 cars to leave me stranded have been fuel pumps. my Dodge diesel is on its 3rd fuel pump in 80K miles. just changed it last month. Last year my BMW died at the post office. it was the fuel pump. and many years ago I had a Subaru gl10 that had an intermittent fuel pump that left me stranded a few times. but on this car it is not the fuel pump.


Fine its the fuel pump, it is always the fuel pump. the headlight goes out its the fuel pump. The windw washer died its the fuel pump.

I have had a rambler sheer a fuel pump, a fuel pump failure on a dodge, a vw, a honda, but all those cars were at least 20 years ago. the last thing i would blame on a subaru is a fuel pump without doping the proper diagnostics, otherwise its just a waste of time and money.

Thats all im saying.

And if someone disagrees, its the fuel pumps fault you dont agree.

:P

#19 ericem

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Posted 02 December 2009 - 11:35 PM

Fuel pump aha!

#20 Tahoe Subaru

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Posted 14 December 2009 - 11:31 PM

I have the front cover off. The passenger side cam is about 9 teeth retarded. I don't see any damage to the belt or pulleys. It's late and dark out, so it will have to wait. Any ideas as to what would cause the belt to jump that far out of alignment? How about valve damage?

#21 nipper

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Posted 14 December 2009 - 11:43 PM

Your going to have to replace the belt. When the belt is off any damage/wear to the idlers will become more obvious.

It rare for a failure this early, but this is a used car and you dont know its maint history. Lest hope that isnt so far out that the valves are bent.

#22 kevinelrn

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Posted 25 December 2009 - 10:28 PM

2001 Legacy obw 2.5 manual trans.
while traveling at 50 MPH car lost power and died. had it towed home. I have a running parts car. so decided to swap some parts and sensors, checked the fuel pump first. it appears to pump fuel at the filter, next clamped the return line. didn't start so I switched pumps. still no start. its has spark. I squirted some fuel into the throttle body and the starter ran faster but no start. I switch cam sensor. no start. I'm going to check the timing belt marks tomorrow. the belt is turning.
any ideas?
P.S. codes are
Knock sensor
misfire random


I have the same problem with my 2000 Legacy GT. Could you PLEASE tell me what you did to fix yours?

#23 Tahoe Subaru

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Posted 03 March 2010 - 11:34 PM

Ericem you win the prize

Update.. I have the car running. 98,000 miles, 25 miles after Subaru inspected the belt. failed timing belt tensioner, 6 bent valves. leaking head gasket, had subaru conditioner installed in 2004. compression test after hanging a new belt. 0-0-180-120 the 120 cylinder had 2 bent intake valves, the 0's had bent exhausts, the car actually ran on 1 and a half cylinder. but not very well

Subaru engine gasket set.
Complete timing kit and water pump
New Clutch and flywheel
New tires
Left front wheel bearing
Right front inner axle boot

Attached Files


Edited by Tahoe Subaru, 04 March 2010 - 12:10 AM.


#24 ericem

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Posted 04 March 2010 - 12:29 AM

Wow those valves collided pretty good with the pistons :eek: At first I was like WOOT a prize, oh, dang lol.

#25 Tahoe Subaru

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Posted 04 March 2010 - 12:44 AM

yeah I'll buy you a beer. next time I see you, HA

when my BMW shed it's timing belt at 61,000 miles, of a 60,000 mile interval, it broke the cam towers. kinda f----- up ed the head.

any way thanks. my girl is happy

Edited by Tahoe Subaru, 04 March 2010 - 12:49 AM.





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