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Old 06-22-2011, 09:16 PM   #1
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Overheated 97 TJ that kept running with key out!

I am new to this forum so forgive me if I am posting this question in the wrong section!

I overheated my jeep the other day due to a leak in the radiator and of course before I got a chance to put the new one in. I was feeding it water for a couple of days until the parts I ordered came in. So long story short I over heater and when I pulled over to let it cool I shut it down and took the key out and my jeep was still running so I got out and stood away from it for a good minute or two and then it shut off. I then waited a few hours to try and start it again and it will not start but it tries to turn over but seems like no spark.

Please let me know if anyone has answers or if this happened to you!
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Old 06-22-2011, 09:29 PM   #2
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Quite possibly the engine got so hot that it was what is called "dieseling" heat of the engine was enough to fire the fuel in the cylinders.

Now as to why it won't start. Hopefully you didn't blow a head gasket or worse.
Pull the dipstick and look for water in the oil. If you see a milkshake looking oil, forget trying to start it, call a tow truck.

If the oil looks good, pull a plug wire off and have a victim, err helper hold it close to the engine block while you try and start the engine. If he gets zapped, or sees a spark arcing, you got spark.

If not, take the distributor cap off and check for moisture from the leaking rad. If it's got moisture in it the spark will arc inside and not be enough getting to the plugs.

Dry it out best as you can, and shoot some WD-40 in the cap to help clear out any remaining moisture.

Also could be the Crankshaft Position Sensor, CPS, got wet and fried. If it did, you will get no spark.

Let us know what you find.

97 Sahara, 74 Renegade, 72 CJ5, 55 Willy's (the Beast) Boss 302, 6:34 gearing, Bose 901 speakers.
God I miss that Jeep. Forgot the kinda Jeep, 80 SX4.
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Old 06-23-2011, 08:57 AM   #3
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Thank you for your insight! I checked oil and it still looks good a bit dirty but good, no chocolate milk or water in there. I did check the dist. cap and saw no visible moisture but the contacts were black and same with the rotor neither is really that old I did a tune up about a year ago. I was thinking to clean them with some fine sand paper and trying again. I also grabbed a ignition coil because I heard of them frying out if they get to hot but I didnt want to install until I knew it was the culprit. Thanks again and I will keep you posted if I find anything else.
I am gonna check to make sure I am getting spark to the plugs in a little bit.
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Old 06-23-2011, 01:36 PM   #4
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Ok so I checked for spark and got it from the plug wires, I cleaned out the dist. cap and still no go. Do you think the plugs themselves got damaged from the "deiseling" I plan to check them but thought I may ask here too incase you have other ideas as to the problem. Thanks in advance.
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Old 06-24-2011, 02:27 PM   #5
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Ok now I checked the plugs and cleaned them off and tried to start it and now I had a loud pop and the oil dipstick shot out and the tube and air filter box was smoking. Can anyone help with this one? This one is all new to me!
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Old 06-24-2011, 10:49 PM   #6
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check the asd and fuel pump relays a fuel injected engine should not suffer from run on unless it was somehow getting fuel perhaps you have an ignition or power relay fault. If you now have a backfire when cranking perhaps you mixed around some plug wires.

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ignition system , overheat , starting issues

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