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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Towed my '84 Spider project home yesterday, and I'm trying to get it started so I can better assess the work involved in getting her back on the road. When I bought her, she did run for about 30 seconds or so (to the surprise of the seller, who claimed she had been sitting for 8 months) but then quit. Could not restart. Battery voltage was way low, so I recharged overnight. Tried to start, and she ran for about 3 seconds and died. Now, every time I try, she catches, but dies immediately, in like 1/2 a second. Fuel pumps not getting enough power? I measured voltage at the battery, 13.2V (only measured after a few starting attempts), might that be a little low? ....I was alone so could not easily measure while cranking...but I would think this should be enough...battery clearly was not depleted when I checked out the car and has a late 2009 stamp on it, so should be rather healthy. Thoughts?
 

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Cranking voltage is critical - it can sound like it is cranking over with good vigor but the starter draws a lot of power and it the available voltage drops below the computers threshold they won't wake up and send the spark/fuel signals.

The fact it runs for a few seconds would imply that the ignition system is functioning. And that means that voltage is probably OK. But it is vital you check it as further diagnostics depend on good battery condition.

If we assume the fuel is 8 months old that is a big issue. Gasoline does not store well. If not treated for storage (Stabil or similar additive) it is likely the fuel is stale and the injectors possibly clogged.

The multiple unsuccessful starting attempts may have fouled the spark plugs.
 

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I agrre with ghnl. If the gas is old it will be bad. Gas will ususally last about 3 months before losing octaine. If the fuel is bad you will need to replace the filter and drain the old. The car also has a history of a negative ground wire corrosion.
 

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Simple test. Pour some fuel into the auxiliary air valve hose. Possibly more than you think you should. Start it. If it runs for a few seconds, you have a fuel feed problem.

1. Disconnect power lead to the fuel pump.
2. Disconnect the fuel line just before the regulator.
3. Jump 12v power to the fuel pump while a friend watches the outflow. If no outflow, you need either a new main pump, in-tank pump, or both. The in-tank pump won't be running during the test, but you should have enough fuel in the line for the test.
4. If you get fuel, then it is probably the regulator or gummed up injectors.

You should, as a simple matter of course, install a new fuel filter before doing these tests.


Good luck,
 
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