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Old 28th February 2008, 15:07   #1
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Default Car won't start. Guess why? A rat chewed up the fuel line

This happened yesterday evening. Around 5PM, my colleague comes and tells me that his car is not starting and can I have a look ? He had driven to work in the morning without any issues, but while leaving for home, the car won't start.

We go to the basement, where the car (a 1-year old blue M800 DX) is parked. Except for one time when the battery got drained after the car was left overnight with lights on, this was the first issue he has faced with the car.

I crank the engine, but car does not start. I can see from the way it cranks that the battery is fully charged - so no battery issues. I check the Fuel Gauge and it is at Empty. Ask him if there is fuel in the car and he says that he had put 10L the night before, after which he would have done only maybe some 10kms.

So, where did the rest of the fuel go ? We discuss possibilities of someone stealing fuel at his apartment complex (it is not possible to steal fuel from cars at the office parking). Since it looks like a problem due to lack of fuel, I send him out to get a few litres of petrol.

He comes back with 2 litres fuel which we pour into the tank. Try starting the car, but no success. After this I am lost. At home we have a Carb M800, with whose innards I am quite familiar and can do some debugging as far as fuel lines and filters are concerned. But this is MPFI and the engine bay looks entirely different.

So, we give up and call Cars India (MASS) who send their man with the repair van. He comes, identifies the problem & fixes it in like 15mins and is gone.

Any guesses as to what could have been the culprit ?
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Old 28th February 2008, 15:14   #2
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FUSE?????

Did you insert the right maruti key???? (He he sometime it may happen u mistake some other key)

mmmm what else it could be ?????
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Old 28th February 2008, 15:15   #3
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A disconnected power cable / fuse / blown out fuse is something that comes to my mind.
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Old 28th February 2008, 15:18   #4
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A fuse,maybe.
Were you watching when the service guy was working,SB?
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Old 28th February 2008, 15:21   #5
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Bad fuel pump / filter? I guess not. Going by your tone, this cant be the obvious.

Engine Choke was left on?
Autocop engine immobiliser?
Fuse?
Rats chewed away lines / wires?
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Old 28th February 2008, 15:23   #6
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Cannot be the fuse or battery connections as the Car was cranking.
Cannot be no fuel, because none was added to solve the problem.

The car was in a parking lot, so noone would have fidgeted with it.

possibles:
blocked purlocator(I hope the spelling is right).
car was on a slope and the fuel was not reaching engine.
iCats did something
no more ideas coming in at this point of time

Last edited by bblost : 28th February 2008 at 15:25. Reason: iCats
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Old 28th February 2008, 15:24   #7
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Any combustion requires O2, Fuel, spark... Check the gadgets that provide these 3.. Its what my father used to tell always (by the way my dad was Automobile & electrical engineer in Airforce and HAL. Never had chance to learn much from him though..

So essentially,
- bleed the fuel lines
- check spark plug or distributor / fuses
- check air filter for anything blockingits way..
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Old 28th February 2008, 15:25   #8
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Fuel leakage? Battery terminal was disconnected?
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Old 28th February 2008, 15:25   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pingping View Post
...Did you insert the right maruti key????...

was goign to ask the same question, but then he said that he cranked it. so key is the right one!

OT:
mmm... maybe it was not authentic Maruti (!). Did the service guy do a dance in front of the car before starting??? (Recollect the jockey dancing in front of the horse in Microsoft Original Software advt.)
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Old 28th February 2008, 15:32   #10
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Hmm... wrong car, perhaps?
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Old 28th February 2008, 15:34   #11
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was it due to the iCATS ??

You were pressing the accelerator while cranking ??

Last edited by dadu : 28th February 2008 at 15:35.
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Old 28th February 2008, 15:44   #12
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Rats had eaten the fuel pipe and the wiring case below the left back door - spilled petrol and grounded wires !
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Old 28th February 2008, 15:49   #13
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Something stuck in the exhaust pipe or the intake?

Shan2nu
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Old 28th February 2008, 15:54   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shan2nu View Post
Something stuck in the exhaust pipe or the intake?

Shan2nu
Was thinking on the same lines. Happened in our office parking some time back. Somebody fooled around & pushed a long cloth in a Bullet's silencer.
The Bullet guy had a very tough time kick starting the bike, but it didn't started.
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Old 28th February 2008, 15:57   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pingping
FUSE????? Did you insert the right maruti key
Nope, no fuse issues. And the key was the right one - it cranked, remember ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by nitrous
Were you watching when the service guy was working, SB?
No, I had work to finish, but I got the details from him. My colleague was watching though.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GTO
Engine Choke was left on?
I looked for this during my initial investigation, but did not see a choke anywhere. I think MPFIs do not come with a choke - dont remember seeing one on my Baleno either.

Quote:
Originally Posted by bblost
blocked purlocator(I hope the spelling is right).
I think you are referring to the fuel filter (Purolator is one brand of fuel filter). I did look for this in the engine bay (did not find one, but I am sure it must be there somewhere) as I used to have lots of trouble with our old carb-M800 due to fuel filter blocking up.

Quote:
Originally Posted by bblost
car was on a slope and the fuel was not reaching engine.
Car was on level ground. If it was on a slope, I would have given this a thought, as I have gone through this once, long time ago. Nice thinking there.

Quote:
Originally Posted by maddy42
Fuel leakage? Battery terminal was disconnected?
I forgot to mention that I looked under the car for fuel leakage as the fuel gauge showed empty. But no signs of leakage.
BTW, if terminal was disconnected, it won't crank, would it ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Edsel Rulez!
Hmm... wrong car, perhaps?
Nope.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dadu
was it due to the iCATS ??
You were pressing the accelerator while cranking ??
No. No.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GTO
Rats chewed away lines / wires?
There you go.
Yes, a rat chewed away both the fuel line and the cable that gives input to the fuel gauge. So, no fuel to the engine, which is why it wont start. And no indication of fuel-in-the-tank on the fuel gauge.

Actually the mechanic said the rat was still around and only jumped out when he started checking the piping/cabling from the fuel tank.

Last edited by supremeBaleno : 28th February 2008 at 15:59.
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