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Can't Turn Over Engine

thiggy's Avatar

Join Date: May 2002
Posts: 718

09-15-04, 04:44 AM   #1  
Can't Turn Over Engine

My son in law recently repaired his car and now I need to help him repair his repairs. The car is a 2000 Merc. Mystique with the 2 litre 4 cyl. engine, auto trans. The car was running when SIL pulled the head to repair blown head gasket. He had the head trued, replaced the gasket and put everything back together with new timing belt. When he tried to crank it, the engine would try to run, but it would back-fire and not run properly. It died and he ran the battery down trying to crank it. He said he was not certain if he had it timed properly. I went to his house yesterday PM to look at it with him and we could not get it to turn over at all with the battery or by jumping it off with his wife’s car. The engine is free, as I can turn it over with a wrench on the crank shaft pulley. The headlights go on OK and the solenoid clicks, but no movement of the engine. Battery terminals are clean. I swapped batteries from his wife’s car and no luck, beyond click, click. (By the way, I could crank his wife’s car with either battery, although both batteries are about 4 years old.) Question– Do you have any suggestion what to check for the no crank problem, and is there any reasonable way to test the solenoid and starter without removing? Also, is this an interference engine, so if the timing is way off the pistons could hit the valves?

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carguyinva's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 1,147

09-15-04, 11:31 AM   #2  
checking the repairs...

...if it cranked before he worked on it, then most likely it's something he did. double check everything esp following the battery cables...could he have left the ground cable loose where it bolts to the engine? are the cables tight at the starter? click, click, click sound like a weak battery or a bad connection to me. you can use a voltmeter to check things. you should have battery voltage at the starter on the big cable and it should stay high when it tries to crank. if it doesn't, then there is a battery/connection problem. if the voltage stays high when you try to crank it, suspect a starter problem.

no...it's not an inteference engine. backfiring while cranking sounds like either the ignition wires on wrong or the cam timing is wrong to me.

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