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View Full Version : 98 a4 2.8 hard start no start



gabeguimaraes
03-23-2009, 06:46 PM
I've been having trouble starting my car for a while now usually 5 seconds of cranking sometimes starting right up. I replaced mass air flow sensor, replaced both valve cover gaskets with spark plug well gaskets, seafoamed crankcase, fuel tank and through vacuum line, replaced spark plugs and most vacuum hoses.
My car is still hard to start and today woudn't start at all. Removed spark plugs and all of them were wet with oil on the tip electrode part. I figured that's the problem but the spark plug valve cover gaskets weren't leaking into the well.
I cleaned the plugs and changed some plug wires around.
Car started very erratic and wanted to stall, I had to press the gas pedal a couple of times and got some white smoke out the back with fuel smell, Prob a misfire......

WHats going on here??? could it be bad wires? (just ordered new ngk wires right now) or fuel pump??

Help would be GREATLY appreciated.
Thank you

a4tro
03-23-2009, 08:16 PM
I've been having trouble starting my car for a while now usually 5 seconds of cranking sometimes starting right up. I replaced mass air flow sensor, replaced both valve cover gaskets with spark plug well gaskets, seafoamed crankcase, fuel tank and through vacuum line, replaced spark plugs and most vacuum hoses.
My car is still hard to start and today woudn't start at all. Removed spark plugs and all of them were wet with oil on the tip electrode part. I figured that's the problem but the spark plug valve cover gaskets weren't leaking into the well.
I cleaned the plugs and changed some plug wires around.
Car started very erratic and wanted to stall, I had to press the gas pedal a couple of times and got some white smoke out the back with fuel smell, Prob a misfire......

WHats going on here??? could it be bad wires? (just ordered new ngk wires right now) or fuel pump??

Help would be GREATLY appreciated.
Thank you

Same problem I'm having. I get the smell of fuel once I get my car started and I also get the white smoke. Have you checked that you have proper fuel pressure and that the fuel pressure regulator is functioning properly. Good luck man. If I find anything out I'll let you know.

gabeguimaraes
03-23-2009, 08:19 PM
I was wondering about that. But I have no way of checking fuel pressure or the fpr...
Do you know of any simple way of checking those??

burner799
03-23-2009, 08:27 PM
I have the same issue on occasion. Assuming it's my fuel pump on it's way out....hope not though.

gabeguimaraes
03-23-2009, 08:30 PM
Sometimes I wonder if trying to diagnose problems on my own and doing DIYs is actually worth it, if I should just take to the shop and spend God knows how much.....

fuel pump is down my list, I still don't know how to check if I'm getting fuel pressure or if the fpr is working.

a4tro
03-23-2009, 08:38 PM
Sometimes I wonder if trying to diagnose problems on my own and doing DIYs is actually worth it, if I should just take to the shop and spend God knows how much.....

fuel pump is down my list, I still don't know how to check if I'm getting fuel pressure or if the fpr is working.

You can remove the line coming off the fuel pressure regulator and crank the car. You should see if fuel pours out and if so than you are getting fuel. You should pour it into a cup though. As far as the pump I used a fuel pressure tester. That is as far as I got. If you fix it yourself you can build confidence in working on your car next time something breaks down. Will save a lot of money.

burner799
03-23-2009, 08:38 PM
well when I pump the gas pedal (ndbw), it helps get the car started, so I assume it's a fuel delivery problem. That makes it more simple to diagnose.

a4tro
03-23-2009, 08:41 PM
I have the same issue on occasion. Assuming it's my fuel pump on it's way out....hope not though.

My car started acting up by shutting off on me while driving if I let the rpms drop too low. Then it got pretty hard to start back up. Looks like it finally gave out.

gabeguimaraes
03-23-2009, 08:41 PM
True with the gas pedal....helps a little...not sure. Where can I get or borrow this pressure tester from and how do I use it?

a4tro
03-23-2009, 08:43 PM
well when I pump the gas pedal (ndbw), it helps get the car started, so I assume it's a fuel delivery problem. That makes it more simple to diagnose.

That is how I have to get the car started sometimes. This mechanic I was talking to told me that what happens is that when you crank the car over and over, you begin building pressure in the fuel system to the point where it would eventually start. This of course would happen if the pump could be bad and is not providing sufficient pressure to work.

gabeguimaraes
03-23-2009, 08:44 PM
Mine never died. Once it starts properly it stays one until I turn it off. Then...once in awhile it's hard to start, recently no start at all.

gabeguimaraes
03-23-2009, 08:45 PM
So how do I pressure test it?

a4tro
03-23-2009, 08:46 PM
True with the gas pedal....helps a little...not sure. Where can I get or borrow this pressure tester from and how do I use it?

You can borrow it from any Autozone. I think they rent them for a price or you can buy it from just about any automotive store. My brother is a mechanic so he used his on the car. He is actually the one who did it. I know that it goes in between one of the lines and it measures the pressure that goes between them. I do not know which lines though. I can ask him and let you know.

burner799
03-23-2009, 08:46 PM
yea, mine never actually dies either. Just hard to start like mentioned. I don't imagine the fpr has much to do with it.

a4tro
03-23-2009, 08:49 PM
Mine never died. Once it starts properly it stays one until I turn it off. Then...once in awhile it's hard to start, recently no start at all.

Once I get mine started, it runs fine. Well it has a little misfire. So maybe I'm thinking it could be the coolant temp, the crankshaft, or the camshaft sensor. I read that either of those sensors can cause a similar problem.

gabeguimaraes
03-23-2009, 08:54 PM
IF i get the car started with the new wires tomorrow I'll run to autozone for the fuel pressure test. And the only way to diagnose those 3 sensors is.....to replace all of them right??? lol

a4tro
03-23-2009, 09:03 PM
IF i get the car started with the new wires tomorrow I'll run to autozone for the fuel pressure test. And the only way to diagnose those 3 sensors is.....to replace all of them right??? lol

Lol thats the plan. Im going to replace one by one and see what happens. Im not sure how much they charge to loan the pressure tester. It should not be too much though. Good luck man.

gabeguimaraes
03-23-2009, 09:08 PM
Thanks you too. We'll use this same thread for updates.

a4tro
03-23-2009, 09:19 PM
Thanks you too. We'll use this same thread for updates.

Sounds good.

NYdriftA4
03-24-2009, 06:37 AM
CEL? could be o2 censors i had i minor premature stalling problem..put in two new 02 sensors and didnt have any problem with it.

gabeguimaraes
03-24-2009, 07:03 AM
Lat cel I had was P1476 and P0306. No Cels for O2 sensors. My codes could be different now, so I need to go to Autozone to check.

gabeguimaraes
03-24-2009, 08:03 AM
I think this might have something to do with the PCV valve leaking oil into my spark plug chamber. Anyone know where its located on the 2.8 30v?

B5A4Kevin
03-24-2009, 09:07 AM
this may or may not be the same problem as the op, but to me, a4tro's issue sounds like leaking fuel injectors. when the car is shut off, there is still fuel pressure, and rather than returning to the fuel tank, the leaky injectors let the fuel enter the combustion chamber. then when you go to start it next time, there is too much fuel, and it wont spark (afr is too rich), but by opening the throttle, you get more air, and it eventually fires and runs fine.

build up rail pressure by trying to start it a few times, then take the key out and unbolt your fuel rail. CAREFULLY pull out the rail and injectors in one piece (dont seperate or you will get sprayed with fuel). and look to see if any of them are dripping/leaking.

before throwing any (more) parts on it, try a hardcore injector cleaning service. not the kind you just pour into your gas tank, but the kind you hook up directly to the fuel rail, pressurize, and run the engine on injector cleaner alone. you can also try soaking your injectors overnight in fuel injector cleaner, but i only use the first method so i dunno how effective the latter is. hope this helps. peace.

a4tro
03-25-2009, 12:25 PM
this may or may not be the same problem as the op, but to me, a4tro's issue sounds like leaking fuel injectors. when the car is shut off, there is still fuel pressure, and rather than returning to the fuel tank, the leaky injectors let the fuel enter the combustion chamber. then when you go to start it next time, there is too much fuel, and it wont spark (afr is too rich), but by opening the throttle, you get more air, and it eventually fires and runs fine.

build up rail pressure by trying to start it a few times, then take the key out and unbolt your fuel rail. CAREFULLY pull out the rail and injectors in one piece (dont seperate or you will get sprayed with fuel). and look to see if any of them are dripping/leaking.

before throwing any (more) parts on it, try a hardcore injector cleaning service. not the kind you just pour into your gas tank, but the kind you hook up directly to the fuel rail, pressurize, and run the engine on injector cleaner alone. you can also try soaking your injectors overnight in fuel injector cleaner, but i only use the first method so i dunno how effective the latter is. hope this helps. peace.

Ill give that a try probably saturday. Thats when I will have a chance to work on my car. I will keep that in mind.

jcs98audi
03-25-2009, 12:39 PM
does this usually occur after re-fueling?

I had the problem just after fueling.. how embarassing at a gas station and my car wouldn't start. Turned out to be a vaccuum line associated with the fuel system being cracked.. it also is why I had weird idles when coming to a stop.. so, check that? the part was like $99.. I had my mechanic diagnose it, so I'm not too much of a help there.. but another mechanic might know what you are talking about if you mention the symptoms..

a4tro
03-25-2009, 01:26 PM
does this usually occur after re-fueling?

I had the problem just after fueling.. how embarassing at a gas station and my car wouldn't start. Turned out to be a vaccuum line associated with the fuel system being cracked.. it also is why I had weird idles when coming to a stop.. so, check that? the part was like $99.. I had my mechanic diagnose it, so I'm not too much of a help there.. but another mechanic might know what you are talking about if you mention the symptoms..

No its not when I refuel. When it first started to happen, however, I was getting a check engine code regarding the throttle body. Im going to check out the vaccumm lines coming from the throttle body.

jcs98audi
03-25-2009, 02:54 PM
Yeah, good idea. Now that you mention it, that sounds more like the problem I was having was the vaccuum lines with the throttle body. If a line is cracked it throws off all the pressure coming from the tank and fueling system.. essentially "flooding" the system, and giving it a hard time trying to start.. thats just my 2 cents, hopefully the issue is resolved soon.. AND easily!

a4tro
03-26-2009, 06:01 PM
Well I installed a new coolant temp sensor and it seems to be running alright. The idle is pretty smooth. Hopefully this fixes the problem. I won't find out until tomorrow though since it usually does not want to start from a cold start. Vaccumm lines seem ok. Ill know more saturday when I can really tear into it.

gabeguimaraes
04-14-2009, 11:40 AM
Hey A4tro, seems like you relieved your problem but didnt completely solve it....
My main issue was clogged fuel filter and old coolant temp sensor. Replaced them both and now it always starts fine. Now I've got a running rich problem P1129, P0432 and P1476.

a4tro
04-15-2009, 08:49 PM
Hey A4tro, seems like you relieved your problem but didnt completely solve it....
My main issue was clogged fuel filter and old coolant temp sensor. Replaced them both and now it always starts fine. Now I've got a running rich problem P1129, P0432 and P1476.

I replaced the coolant temp sensor and the car fired right up. I have been driving it for a couple of weeks now keeping an eye on it and it seems fine. I got a check engine light on but its related to the egr valve. Right now the car is running fine though.

thenorthface84
04-16-2009, 04:53 AM
check your fuel filter, vacuum lines (especially if you are dbw), and you could have bad injectors or a bad injector o-ring. get a vag-com and see if you are showin any codes.

flyromeo3
04-16-2009, 05:32 AM
did you replace the oil plug seals? I would think oil might be seeping into the combustion chamber if your finding oil on the s.p tip.

also, are you still getting the P1476 CEL. I finally fixed mine after months of troubleshooting. PM me if you need help with that.

P0306..-- I believe would be mis-fire in cyl 6. When I had a misfire I replaced all spark plugs and problem went away.

P1476 = gonna have to replace Leak Detection Pump. / maybe a leak in a hose but chances are its the pump.