'89 YJ: refuses to start - Jeep Wrangler Forum

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Old 11-05-2010, 01:10 PM   #1
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'89 YJ: refuses to start

Hi,

Got an '89 YJ, all original, since day one. Dealer maintained. Notorious carb if anyone has one. Issue I have right now is that it refuses to start. In all the years never experienced this.

Vehicle was recently serviced. Only got 90K +/- miles on it, drive it maybe once a week. Last time driving about a week ago. Notably in some rain which it hates and engine tried to cut out while driving, as always and as always over the years in the rain, simply feather the throttle with foot on the brake at red lights or in traffic etc. to keep it going. No problem and have always done that.

Came back to where I live. Parked it. One week later (yesterday). Hopped in and tried to start it. Simply refuses to start. Solid new battery. Just cranks over and over and over. Does not want to start. Tried all the tricks. Including Full push to the floor of the throttle. Nothing. Normally to start it, would give it a 1/4 throttle pump, and after a few tries would fire up.

Absolutely nothing yesterday and today, refuses to start. Just keeps cranking over and over and over. In all the years never experienced this. Whether cold or flooded you can at least hear the engine trying to fire. In this case zero.

Notes:

1. Normally when you flood it (or when I do), I can stick me head outside and at least take a whiff and smell the gas even while sitting inside the vehicle. In this case I do not smell anything from that distance even if pumping or intentionally flooding it. Opening the hood, I do smell gas.

2. This I suspect may be part of the issue. I was running on less than one bar on the gas guage. I do know to keep this old vehicle fully topped up at all times owing to rust. moisture etc. in the gas tank can cause problems. I forgot to fill it up when returning from taking it out, so it sat there for a week after that. However have done similar in the past and always managed to get her running.

At a comple loss today what and why. She feels healthy, engine sounds good cranking, battery is still full, but just does not want to fire. It almost feels to me as if someone tampered with it and simply disconnected something to stop if starting everything "feels" fine with the vehicle in all respects, except it just does not want to start.

I don't know where to start looking. She's in an apartment underground parking lot. I don't even know who to call. Auto service or tow truck etc. As far as I'm concerned she's in 100% condition and doesn't warrant that. (for now).

Would appreciate any tips or suggestions where to look or what to do in a basic way to get it started. If the symptoms sound familiar what can it be. I'm thinking the clues are in the wet/rain last week (but its now one week later in covered parking), near empty gas tank, and even after intentional flooding, not the usual smell of gas being smelled from a distance. Even when flood and cranking you can hear it trying to fire (cranking slows down or sounds lower as it tries), in this case, the cranking is constant sounding throughout trying.

Please help.

Thanks.

BTW as old as she is, love her to death and can't get rid of her ever. As much as the dealer keeps baiting me with a new one and offering a very good trade in price.

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Old 11-05-2010, 01:21 PM   #2
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Hey posi,..u checked your coil?

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Old 11-05-2010, 01:37 PM   #3
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i have 2 jeeps..the 93 YJ (red one in profile) and a 94 YJ..both have the firepower distributor kit..which includes the "screaming demon coil!..on the 94 it was a bit unpredictable!?..when it was cold or rainy it would splutter abit...i tried everything to find the problem...then one day driving down the road..it rolled to a stop???..thought id run outta fuel!...then i moved afew leads around...tried the jeep again..it started right up!..it was loose wires going to the coil...
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Old 11-05-2010, 01:41 PM   #4
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still havent replaced the loose wire...just wrapped one of my kids hairbands around it!!...works a treat!..
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Old 11-05-2010, 03:40 PM   #5
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If its been sputtering when it rains, first thing is to replace the plugs, wires, rotor and cap, use the silicone they provide too. Check the fuel filter...
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Old 11-05-2010, 04:04 PM   #6
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What happens to the 89 4.2 at that mileage is, if not the coil, the Ignition Control Module goes bad. If it's not the coil I bet it's that. Also, at 88,500 the O2 sensor needs to be replaced. I have already replaced both on my 89 4.2 5 spd. X2 with Garyk also.
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Old 11-05-2010, 06:35 PM   #7
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You should do the nutter bypass.
it will greatly improve starting ( by cold and hot ) and let the motor rev out smoother and faster improving the power delivery .

it makes the stock carter carb. useable if you can't afford a mc 2100 upgrade.



best of all it cost nothing to do and only takes 45 min. .

here is the link .

feel free to call me if you have questions.
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Old 11-05-2010, 06:52 PM   #8
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Old 11-05-2010, 10:10 PM   #9
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check the distributor cap if it gets wet inside it will not run

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