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Guest Message by DevFuse

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delayed starting problem

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5 replies to this topic

#1 jluther


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Posted 31 October 2006 - 03:44 PM

Sorry to create a new thread if this has been discussed before but there are so many threads regarding starting issues, it's tough to find the right one.

In our 91 Legacy, we have a starting problem that I hear about a lot and have witnessed a few times in this car. When you turn the key, it does nothing. But if you hold the key in the start position, eventually it cranks right up. Tends to happen in colder weather, in the morning.

My girlfriend came back in saying that it won't start this morning so I went out and tried. All the accessory lights and stereo come on and then if you hold it in place for 5 seconds it finally turns over and starts immediately. I think I heard a hum before it started, and after reading other starting posts, must be the fuel pump doing it's job.

She thinks it's due to the transmission not thinking the car is in park. She thinks wiggling the transmission shifter helps, although I'm unconvinced. I think it's just holding the key there.

Just to present all the facts, she's had a check engine light on for a while, that needs to be addressed soon. I'm guessing this one is a oxygen sensor, but will get the code read soon.

Any suggestions would be appreciated.


#2 pamike


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Posted 31 October 2006 - 06:19 PM

so your saying the car doesn't crank. if so i've had 2 do that and both times it was the starter. i replaced it and have not had any problems since.

the check engine, take the cover off thats below the steering column. i think something like 10 screws. somewhere on the left side should be 2 single wire black plugs. they might be tucked behind something so you will have to look. plug them together and turn the key on. the light will flash the codes. long and short flashes.

#3 lmdew



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Posted 31 October 2006 - 06:45 PM

Send me a PM or call 719-200-2973. My son has two spare starters in Fort Collins for a Auto Trans. He'd be happy to put one in for you. Later, Larry

#4 mjreilly


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Posted 31 October 2006 - 07:00 PM

Check the solenoid/starter, battery & cables. If those are all good, check the ignition switch.



#5 Manarius


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Posted 31 October 2006 - 07:17 PM

Starter solenoid contacts. I've seen it time and time again. You can replace the contacts, but it's probably just worth it to replace the entire starter.

#6 jluther


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Posted 31 October 2006 - 10:53 PM

Thanks everyone. Now that I've had some more time to search, I found a few relevant threads, i'll post them here to help anyone who comes along this thread in the future.


It seems that all these cases are automatics. Some say they've replaced the starter and ignition etc and it still happens. Others suggest it may be the neutral safety switch (which I think is the push button on the baseplate for the shifter of her car). I've always wondered what that button does.

So when it warms up I'll clean the battery terminals, in the mean time I'll tell her to just play with that button and try starting in neutral.

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