2003 Mitsubishi Lancer ES won't start

Friday

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#1
Daughter's car. 2003 Mitsubishi Lancer ES A/T. They had a problem with a rear stabilizer, so it sat in the drive way for 6 months until my son-in-law replaced the part. Now the car won't start. New battery, cranks fine. Won't fire. disconnected plenum and sprayed small amount of starter fluid towards throttle body with throttle open and tried, same thing, cranks but won't fire. I'm suspecting no spark, but cannot see where the spark plugs are on this thing to check for spark. Can some one tell me where the plugs are on this car? Anyone out there suspect something I could check? Thanks in advance for any help.
 
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#2
The plugs are under the coils...Here is a diagram for you...Was it running OK when it was parked 6 mo. ago?...maybe check fuel pressure....(47 - 50 psi) ....can you hear the fuel pump run when you first turn the key on?...Jim

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Friday

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Jim: Thanks for the diagram. It was running fine when it was parked. I could not hear the fuel pump run when I turned the key on, but wasn't sure if it was load enough to hear. That was why I tried the starting fluid. After cranking it over several times for several minutes, I thought I could smell fuel, and assumed that meant the pump was working, but maybe not. The car has 1/4 tank of gas in it, 2.5 gallons of fresh gas was added over the weekend, so it was pretty low while it was sitting. Is there a way to check a plug to see if it is sparking on a setup like this?
 
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#4
Stick a sparkle plug in the plug wire (#2 on diagram) and fasten a ground wire to the threaded end of plug. Crank engine, look for spark.
 

Friday

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#6
Tried to test spark plug for spark and didn't get anything, but I'm going to re-test again when I have more time. Only had 30 minutes with the car tonight, and may not have had a good ground. Wouldn't it more than likely be the fuel pump if something was going to go bad from sitting for 6 months, rather than the ignition coil packs? I have no way of testing the fuel pressure. Is there a way to disconnect a fuel line and see if fuel is pumping through?
 
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#7
If you have a timing light...hook it up to the #1 plug wire and crank it over and see if the light flashes....also the fuel pump on yours is easy to get to...remove the rear seat and there is an access cover under there...take it off and have someone turn the key on while holding your hand on the pump...you should be able to hear it run or feel it for a couple seconds......hope this helps....Jim
 

Friday

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#8
Jim. that helps a bunch! Will post back with results later in the week. I'm taking the next 24hrs off to celebrate my oncolgy report. Cancer Free as of today!
 

nickb2

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#10
Happy to hear you are cancer free!! :thx

After sitting for so long, and if you determine that the engine has no spark, you may want to go through all your engine grounds, clean them with emery cloth or similar. Maybe some corrosion formed over time and is preventing ground from returning current to ECM for coil driver. When you crank engine, can hear the injectors trig. When you have cranked engine, pull spark plugs, are they wet? (flooded)

Do you have a scanner that can display live data? Does the check engine light light up at key on?

You state the battery is new, maybe the leads touched and a fuse blew, try checking all the fuses and master fuses also.
 

Friday

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#11
The continuing saga. Was able to determine the fuel pump was not running. Some one else replaced the fuel pump, and she had a running car for two days, then it started running really rough, and now fails to start. Local mechanic worked on it this time, says the car has no spark. He replaced the cam position sensor to no avail, then removed the coil packs and had them tested, they both tested fine. Now he is going to test the crank position sensor. It sounds like he is just throwing parts at this problem. What is the normal procedure for diagnosing a no spark condition in this car?
 
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#12
How about a security or immobilizer light ? Any chance one is on or flashing ? If you can beg or borrow a good scan tool to read BCM (body computer) codes you can check to see if there is a fault with the immobilizer system. Have you tried a different key ? Is the key an OEM key or an aftermarket ? I will try to dig up some more info on the immobilizer system.

Ford_Dude
 

billr

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#13
I'm going to be blunt and say she shouldn't take it to any mechanic that does not have a scan tool to read out all the info.
 
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#14
Has he checked to see if there are any codes stored?....This tsb may or may not apply to yours...would be worth having him check it....Jim.....SUBJECT:
HARD TO START ENGINE DTC P0340 (and P0335)

PURPOSE

The engine may be hard or impossible to start and MFI DTC P0335 and possibly P0340 may be stored due to abnormal wear to the camshaft position sensor support. Oil grooves have been added to the camshaft position sensor support to improve lubrication.

If a customer has a vehicle with the above condition, replace the camshaft position sensor support with the new part listed in the PARTS INFORMATION section of this bulletin.

AFFECTED VEHICLES
2002-07 Lancer 2.0L


PROCEDURE

Replace the camshaft position sensor support as described in Group 11B, GENERATOR AND IGNITION SYSTEM REMOVAL AND INSTALLATION, of the appropriate service manual.

IMPORTANT! Carefully remove all debris from the end of the camshaft position sensor before reinstalling it.


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Friday

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#15
Thanks, Jim. I'm hoping the mechanic is bringing a code reader tonight, and I'll have him check for those codes. Meantime, son-in-law wants to know if replacing the battery on this car would cause or require any kind of re-learning or resetting the ecu?