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Discussion Starter #1
when i crank my car (97 sable vulcan) it just cranks, no attempt at a start, sounds like it's not getting spark or fuel, not sure what it is as i am supposed to be going to work. any suggestions on what to look at? i would ride the busses to work but they are shut down because of the shooting alert here at Northern Illinois Univ. I need the car tho as it is my only form of transport, i'll try to think of reasons while i'm at work, but yeah, it ran fine last night when i parked it so i'm a bit puzzled right at the moment

thanks in advance
shane

edit: checked schrader valve on fuel rail, has pressure, and checked fuel pump relay switch, and it is down...
 

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First you're going to have to check to see if you have spark and/or fuel. Can you hear the fuel pump prime the system before you crank? If you can get a spark tester then you can check for spark. Another way to check fuel is to get a fuel pressure tester and hook it to the fuel rail. Or if you can't get a tester, you can remove the little cap off of the fuel rail and press the valve in. Be careful though that you don't spray fuel in your face. If fuel sprays out though, you have pressure. If it just trickles out or very little pressure you have a problem.
 

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This is exactly what my Sable did to me when she died. I had no power at the PCM, no spark, I did have fuel pressure, but the fuel pump would not start.

Bob (carfixer68) told me that the PCM receives power from the constant control relay module (ccrm) that is attached to the side of the battery box. I didn't know that when my Sable died, or else I would have checked it out, but it's a start.

JR
 

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Discussion Starter #4
my fuel pump kicks on and everything sounds like normal, it just won't fire. has anyone heard anything about the crankshaft position sensor causing anything like this? i have quite a bit of ice all over the car, under the hood and everywhere, but i just don't understand how it would run last night and not today (other than the fact that it's a car, and it can do what it wants, lol)

another thing i noticed (well, before the battery got low from trying different things and then cranking it) was that the check engine light would start flashing when i cranked it, i haven't noticed it do that on a normal day so just throwing that out there for consideration...

i appreciate the help!!!
 

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Not sure if it applies during cranking, but when running blinking CEL equals misfire.

Check for power at the coil pack?
 

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Quick check for bad CKP, CKP circuit: Turn key to RUN. CEL should come on. Now crank it over. If the PCM is getting a CKP signal, the CEL will go out. If CEL stays on while cranking, PCM is not getting a CKP signal.

BTW, pressing the schraeder valve to see if gas sprays out in not a good way to test for sufficient fuel pressure. For example, if fuel press is, say 15 psi, fuel will spray out all over (not real safe either), but the motor will not start with pressure that low. Only good way to check for correct fuel pressure is to use a gauge.

Unlikely but possible cause for a crank no start): If the TPS fails in a mode that tells the PCM that WOT is present (TPS voltage over about 4.2 V), the PCM goes into flood clear mode, and will not fire the injectors.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
thanks for the replies!!! i figured out the problem today (it finally stopped raining/icing long enough) and i found the lower alternator bracket hanging down on the crank pos. sensor. i lifted it up and had a friend crank it and it fired right up. my guess is that it was pulling the sensor out and not allowing it to start. so i re-attached the bracket that i assume some mechanic left off sometime last year and everything seems good to go. I think i'm still going to check it all out just to be sure, but at least it runs again. :merc:

oh and dan, don't worry about it, everyone is busy this time of year :thumb:
 
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