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Old 06-26-2017, 10:05 PM   #1
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8.1 Starting Wows

When it's cold it doesn't start one the first try. I can crank for ever and it won't start. Starts right up on the second try and runs perfect. When it's up to running temperature, if I turn it off say to stop and get fuel, it takes two or three tries to get it started. When it starts up, it purrs. The rig is a 2004 P32 under a 2005 Fleetwood. 14,970 miles. Just passed smog test last week and tech said it was running very clean numbers. I've looked at the basics, air filter, loose ignition wires, just a general overall look, nothing loose or hanging. I'm guessing I'll check fuel pressure next and see if the handheld scan tool shows any codes. Any thoughts, Thank you.
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Old 06-26-2017, 10:20 PM   #2
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Sound like the fuel pump is leaking back pressure back into the tank.
You may have to leave a pressure gauge on the fuel system over night.
Instead of cranking the first key turn cold , turn the key on , bump the starter for 1/2 sec , leave the key on for 20 secs ; then turn off the key and repeat the bump and wait. On the third try see if the motor starts right up.
These two pre start cycles will give the pump a chance to build pressure in the lines.
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Old 06-28-2017, 09:21 AM   #3
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Skip426,
I performed your suggestion step by step and it made no difference on the start up. First try, no go, second try was a go. I'm open for any other thoughts and suggestions. If I put the pressure gage on the system overnight I'm I just looking for a drop in pressure? Thanks for your time.
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Old 06-28-2017, 09:31 AM   #4
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Fuel Filter ever been changed?
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Old 06-28-2017, 09:36 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Skip426 View Post
Sound like the fuel pump is leaking back pressure back into the tank.
You may have to leave a pressure gauge on the fuel system over night.
Instead of cranking the first key turn cold , turn the key on , bump the starter for 1/2 sec , leave the key on for 20 secs ; then turn off the key and repeat the bump and wait. On the third try see if the motor starts right up.
These two pre start cycles will give the pump a chance to build pressure in the lines.
I've never encountered a vehicle where you had to "bump" the starter to energize the fuel pump. Wouldn't it just come on, if pressure was needed, with the key in the run position?

For the OP's problem,, i wonder if there is something like a "crankshaft position sensor" on the engine? I know that my Jeep had a similar problem when trying to start. It would always crank but sometimes not start. It was different every time with it sometimes starting the first time, then other times taking several attempts. I don't believe it ever showed a code.
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Old 06-28-2017, 09:43 AM   #6
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The pressure gauge will also tell you , if the fuel pump builds to the correct pressure at key on and when you first crank the engine over.
The P chassis has problems with ignition switch overheating and melting the wiring at the switch multiple connector but that's usually a no crank condition .
Do you have an OBD II code reader?

Here's a post about the ignition switch.

Stranded by a faulty Starter Switch
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Old 06-28-2017, 09:58 AM   #7
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I've never encountered a vehicle where you had to "bump" the starter to energize the fuel pump. Wouldn't it just come on, if pressure was needed, with the key in the run position?
My thought on the starter bump was to maybe save some starter and battery load, by avoiding the long crank times, and maybe give the ECM a wake up call.
Some early fuel injected vehicles even had the fuel pump wired through the oil pressure sending unit , to shut off fuel pressure if the engine stalled. I'm pretty sure the manufacturers stopped doing that after the first few years in the 80s.
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Old 06-28-2017, 08:55 PM   #8
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Put a fuel pressure gauge on it. Turn key on, do not start. Note what pressure it reads. It should hold this pressure for a relatively long amount of time. If it immediately bleeds down after the pump has finished priming the system then you've got a bad check valve in the pump.
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Old 06-28-2017, 09:14 PM   #9
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If your fuel pressure is good, try to see if you have a signal from the engine position sensor (EPS). If you have a scan tool, plug it in and watch the engine RPM's. It should show cranking speed. Watch it on the second try when it starts also. Your dash tach probably won't show the RPM's while you are cranking the motor.
Good Luck.
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Old 06-28-2017, 09:40 PM   #10
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When mine did that it took 3 key on cycles to build enough fuel pressure to start, 55 psi. After finding this I would turn the key on and off 3 times then hit the starter and it would start every time. Finally replaced the fuel pump and filter.
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Old 06-29-2017, 06:27 AM   #11
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Tho it doesn't sound exactly like your problem, hard starting on initial key turn has been caused by a faulty CPS...crankshaft position sensor.....a known late-8.1L problem....I would look at that if the fuel pressure does not pan out......the CPS is a plastic inserted thing on the top of engine at very back....if it breaks off trying to remove it they heat up a awl real hot, insert it a coupla inches straight down into it, screw a sheet metal screw in this hole and pull it out with vice grips/pry bar.


Now I'm thinking my CPS is the same thing as 'Unplanned's EPS ----engine position sensor.
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Old 07-04-2017, 02:15 PM   #12
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On the older distributor and HEI equipped chevy motors, A faulty solenoid on the starter can also act just like this. Solenoid doesnt let power back to the ignition system on the first start try. Upon subsequent tries the contact with the disc is complete and power is sent to the ignition properly.
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Old 07-16-2017, 08:23 PM   #13
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Hard Starting

I've been out of town this past week and haven't had a chance to read any of your posts. I want to start by thanking everyone of you for taking the time to help me out with this problem. This is where I'm at as of this evening- changed the fuel filter, no difference. I put the fuel pressure gage on and turned the key on. The gage went to 10lbs and stopped. Shut off the key and turned it back on and the gage went to 20lbs and stopped. Each time I turn the key on the gage rises about 10lbs and then it stops accompanied by a "click" from under the dash. I continued this until the gage was over 50lbs. The engine stated immediately when I tried it. The gage went to 63.5lbs. with engine running. I went in search of the "click" and narrowed it down to the fuel pump relay. The relay only stays on for about 5 seconds with each turn of the key. It seems to me that the relay should stay on until fuel pump reaches maximum pressure????? Does this sound familiar to anyone and should I go ahead and replace the relay? Thank You, Doug. One other item, after shutting off the engine the gage dropped about 10lbs. after 30 or 40 minutes.
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Old 07-16-2017, 08:26 PM   #14
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You can swap your AC relay for the fuel pump relay to see if it make a difference. Sounds like you probably are going to need a new pump though.
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