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Old 04-10-2019, 04:01 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Question Engine shuts off when gear set in reverse

1985 Samura with 1.0L and carb.

1) Sometimes, usually when engine cold (parked), the engine will just shut off immediately when I set the gear into reverse.

I guess it is somehow related to turning on reverse lights (which works fine btw). Anyone know what could cause this? Battery voltage is fine.


2) When car is parked for more than a month, it will not start unless I use started fluid in the intake. Anyone know what may cause this?
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Old 04-10-2019, 02:09 PM   #2 (permalink)
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first thing, get your battery load tested, volts can be fine at the terminals, but capacity can be reduced as the battery ages. I have seen brand new batteries fail to start a car at 3 months old due to damaged cells.
Another thing to do is check all connections to battery, main power feeds and grounds as well. over 30+ years of age on them, those connections do corrode, especially the ones onto the body and engine.
No start after a month could be battery, fuel pump non return valve allowing fuel to drain from pump back into the tank, stuck needle on the carb float (carb will empty over a month from evaporation alone) what happens if you keep cranking?

once you have done that, then see what its doing.

As for the stalling going into reverse, any signs of clutch drag? this is common when cold and can cause all sorts of wierd symptoms. What happens if you add a little gas just before engaging reverse (as in get it ticking over at a fast idle)
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the 2013 3 dr GV is now the off road only toy

"Dogs feel very strongly that they should always go with you in the car, in case the need should arise for them to bark violently at nothing right in your ear."

Last edited by 2013GV; 04-10-2019 at 02:14 PM.
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Old 04-11-2019, 03:15 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Thanks for your reply. How would one go about "load testing" the battery?
I have already checked and cleaned all grounds and wires I can find in the engine bay.

I replaced the fuel pump. Will replace carb. It just keeps cranking without any signs of actually firing the engine. Just the continuous cranking sound.

The engine shuts off immediately when gear lever enters the reverse position - while clutch pedal still depressed. Clutch seem to be in good shape.
When you mention it... I think last time it happened, I managed to get it in reverse by revving the engine while setting the stick in reverse...
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Old 04-11-2019, 03:31 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blickbox View Post
Thanks for your reply. How would one go about "load testing" the battery?
I have already checked and cleaned all grounds and wires I can find in the engine bay.

I replaced the fuel pump. Will replace carb. It just keeps cranking without any signs of actually firing the engine. Just the continuous cranking sound.

The engine shuts off immediately when gear lever enters the reverse position - while clutch pedal still depressed. Clutch seem to be in good shape.
stop firing the parts cannon and diagnose the issue.

Load testing involves getting an auto electrician to apply a known load to the battery and measure the terminal voltage, sometimes called a "CCA" test, it indicates the state of the battery and its ability to produce current without voltage depression to a low level.

do you have spark? do you have fuel? is your timing correct? check these things first. Replacing pump and carb are no use if you don't have spark at the correct time. Do a compression test as well. Report your findings.

now, for your second and at present, less important issue....lets get it starting and running properly first.

Quote:
When you mention it... I think last time it happened, I managed to get it in reverse by revving the engine while setting the stick in reverse...
this sounds like a clutch dragging, any indications of graunching noises or gear clashing if you gently apply pressure to the gear stick and shift into reverse with the clutch depressed?
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2015 5 dr Grand Vitara 2.4 (daily driver)
1971 V8 HG Holden with 383 stroker 9" torq lok and TH350 trans (the toy)
Mitzi RVR 2.0 (not one of my better buys)
the 2013 3 dr GV is now the off road only toy

"Dogs feel very strongly that they should always go with you in the car, in case the need should arise for them to bark violently at nothing right in your ear."
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Old 04-11-2019, 05:45 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2013GV View Post
stop firing the parts cannon and diagnose the issue.

Load testing involves getting an auto electrician to apply a known load to the battery and measure the terminal voltage, sometimes called a "CCA" test, it indicates the state of the battery and its ability to produce current without voltage depression to a low level.

do you have spark? do you have fuel? is your timing correct? check these things first. Replacing pump and carb are no use if you don't have spark at the correct time. Do a compression test as well. Report your findings.

now, for your second and at present, less important issue....lets get it starting and running properly first.

this sounds like a clutch dragging, any indications of graunching noises or gear clashing if you gently apply pressure to the gear stick and shift into reverse with the clutch depressed?
I already got a new carb cheap, so I was going to replace it anyway. So I think I'll do that before any extensive testing, since the issue with not starting is not a big problem (only happens when left parked for months).

I don't have access to the car right now. But what you are saying is that when I press the clutch pedal, the clutch isn't really 100% disconnected? The clutch feels fine though, but 1 year ago I replaced a snapped clutch cable, maybe I didn't adjust the new cable correctly? I guess I should try to tighten the cable?

Last edited by blickbox; 04-11-2019 at 06:04 AM.
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Old 04-11-2019, 02:03 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blickbox View Post
I already got a new carb cheap, so I was going to replace it anyway. So I think I'll do that before any extensive testing, since the issue with not starting is not a big problem (only happens when left parked for months).

I don't have access to the car right now. But what you are saying is that when I press the clutch pedal, the clutch isn't really 100% disconnected? The clutch feels fine though, but 1 year ago I replaced a snapped clutch cable, maybe I didn't adjust the new cable correctly? I guess I should try to tighten the cable?
cables stretch, it could be that its not releasing fully. Check the adjustment.
__________________
2015 5 dr Grand Vitara 2.4 (daily driver)
1971 V8 HG Holden with 383 stroker 9" torq lok and TH350 trans (the toy)
Mitzi RVR 2.0 (not one of my better buys)
the 2013 3 dr GV is now the off road only toy

"Dogs feel very strongly that they should always go with you in the car, in case the need should arise for them to bark violently at nothing right in your ear."
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