89 240sx Not Starting

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Posts: 1
Joined: Sun Aug 12, 2018 6:31 pm
Car: 1989 240sx

89 240sx Not Starting

Postby maxthebabybird » Sun Aug 12, 2018 7:18 pm

For starters I'll say that I'm not very well versed in cars just yet, the project I have is my first and I'm very much still learning so bear with me.

I've got an 89 240sx, it started when I initially got it three years ago, it sat for about two for those years and now it won't start. I have a mechanically inclined friend helping me out(however he's a Ford guy, so this is slightly different territory I guess) and per his suggestion, the following has been replaced

-Starter and starter relay
-Fuel pump and filter
-Fuel injectors
-Spark plugs

After the point of replacing fuel injectors (one was leaking so that definitely helped :rolleyes: ) she sounded stronger? Where there had only been a low whine upon turning the key before, there's kind of a rumble if that makes sense, but will not start. The fan for the radiator will rotate maybe one blade every time I try. There's also a clanking noise when I turn the key and I have no idea what would be making that? Also the ignition switch does literally nothing and once upon a time it definitely helped get it to start.

The consensus so far is that something isn't getting power where it should, but I, once again, have no idea where to go from there.

Any and all suggestions or insight would be greatly appreciated!

Posts: 138
Joined: Sat Apr 01, 2017 9:19 pm
Car: 1996 - Nissan 240sx SE RB25DET
2008 - Yamaha YZF-R6 - SOLD
2007 - Ford F150 FX4
Location: Huntsville, AL

Re: 89 240sx Not Starting

Postby flartius » Tue Aug 14, 2018 8:52 am

maxthebabybird wrote:
Sun Aug 12, 2018 7:18 pm

The consensus so far is that something isn't getting power where it should,
Oh boy....

Well, not to knock on your friend, you shouldn't have been throwing money at the problem hoping to fix it until you diagnosed the problem. With that being said, I know we all have to learn sometime... but if you think it is an electrical issue then the FSM and a volt meter is going to be your best friend. Chase wires and find out what has power and what doesn't have power, for an engine to run it needs three things: fuel, air and spark. Start with fuel, are you getting fuel to the injectors? No, then start working backwards until you find where the problem exists. Then work on spark, are the spark plugs firing? No, are they bad plugs? Is the distributor getting power? etc...

Welcome to the forum btw and I hope this helps you get started, once you have more information feel free to add to this post and maybe we can point you in a better direction.

Good luck!

Posts: 2568
Joined: Mon Feb 20, 2006 10:23 pm
Car: 1990 S13 H/C KA24E
2005 Toyota Sequoia
1976 Honda CB750F Super Sport
Location: San Angelo, TX

Re: 89 240sx Not Starting

Postby wa-chiss » Tue Aug 14, 2018 7:55 pm

On the plus side, enough parts thrown at it, it'll finally start and she'll have plenty of new goodies. Although, that's the wrong way to fix a car.

Things inherently wrong with the KA24E (i assume that's what you have as it's an 89):
1) Timing chain tensioner. I rebuilt my KA24E including an all new tensioner and it still rattles on start-up. It's possible to hear it on an extended crank if the engine doesn't start. Possibly the noise you're hearing.

2)Hydrolic Lash adjusters (AKA Lifters). On the KA24E they're in the rocker arms and if the engine hasn't run in a while, they could have collapsed. Also possibly the noise you're hearing. This issue won't resolve itself usually until after start-up and ran for a bit.

The low whine you describe sounds like a bad starter bendix. The new starter resolved that since you now have a low rumble.
This low rumble sounds as if the engine is at least cranking, but without initial ignition. However, the fan blades turning 1 blade maybe seem as if it's not actually cranking. I'd like for you to check the crankshaft pulley while someone cranks it. It's the lower, center pulley all the drive belts ride on. I might have your friend look while you crank. Also, before trying to crank it, pull the distributor cap off and have him observe the rotor if it spins as well during cranking.

Back story: I bought my 1990 in 2009 and daily drove it to college and work. One day on my way to school, the engine just shut off. No warning, no rough idle, no misfires, nothing. Luckily the course I was taking was automotive and we used it during engine class for diagnostics.

Come to find out, on the KA24E the distributor and oil pump ride off a little gear on the front of the crankshaft VIA a spindle that runs to both the oil pump and the distributor. The previous owner had the timing chain replaced or had it removed and reinstalled. However, the gear on the crank was installed backwards and so only a small section of that gear was turning that spindle. It ran until it wore that section of gear out enough the distributor and oil pump stopped turning.

Hence why I'd like you to check the distributor rotor if it turns when you crank the engine.

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