won't start after overheating


Old 12-12-03, 09:32 PM
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won't start after overheating

My 1988 323 mazda blew a radiator hose while my son was driving it and I think he continued to drive it too long. I don't know how hot it got or for how long since I was not in the car and details are sketchy. It will turn over but will not start and it sounds very labored and not normal as it turns over. I assume he cooked the motor but how do I determine if it is cooked or not.

Thank you for any help
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Old 12-13-03, 11:24 AM
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I'd start with a cooling system pressure test (with spark plugs removed) and a cylinder compression test. It will likely fail both.
Old 12-13-03, 02:15 PM
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Smile Won't start

Hi johnnny

You said:
It will turn over but will not start, and it sounds very labored and not normal as it turns over.

You may also want to have a load test done on your battery also your starter may be damaged. From the sounds of a labored turn over, you may have electrical as well as mechanical problems.

Iv'e seen engines jump the timing chain they got so hot they melted the plastic spk plug holders & wires. A new battery, wires, starter & various electrical parts & the engines were fine.

That's not a suggestion to not do, a coolant pressure check, and a Compression check as Desi has suggested to do.
Old 12-13-03, 02:22 PM
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Maybe you can get lucky!!!!
The upper radiator hose connects right above the distributor. Ive seen antifreeze work its way into the cap after hoses burst causing no start. take the cap off and dry it out completly
Old 12-16-03, 09:16 AM
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Location: Shenandoah Valley
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unfortunately, today's bi-metal engines don't tolerate overheating much and definately not long enough to melt plug wires and such. it also doesn't have a timing chain. if it has alot of miles on it...your first instinct is likely correct. you might even try cranking it with the spark plugs removed and see if any coolant flies out of the spark plug holes...don't stand in front of it when cranking! As for "load testing the battery"...try to find someone who can test it by the conductance method...it's much more accurate and safer than high rate discharge testing (load testing).do the other things first suggested by desi...
Old 12-16-03, 07:11 PM
mike from nj
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good advice from everyone.

you might also want to pull the dipstick or remove the oil fill cap and smell the oil, sometimes that's all i need to do. if it takes my breath away or makes my eyes tear, i know what it needs.

damage can range from a melted cylinder head, to scuffed pistons, to melted away pistons, and to an almost seized camshaft or crankshaft. (all of which i've seen)

try holding your foot on the gas pedal, at different positions to try to start it, sometimes it will catch. however, the damage is still there, and it will likely smoke or want to blow the radiator cap off after a short time of running.
Old 12-17-03, 09:25 PM
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bad rings

sounds to me it was run so hot that the rings collapsed
Old 12-20-03, 06:36 AM
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Remove the sparkplugs...and squirt some light oil in the cylinders.

Turn the engine over a few seconds...this lubricates the cylinder walls and helps seal the rings...install a new set of plugs.(The old plugs may have metal oxide cooked on them).

If its going to start and run at all this should do it...expect major problems or...if you are lucky...

Good luck jimmymc

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