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    Car ignition turning over longer than normal

    Engine is taking a while longer to turn over, however, when I put key to 'on' for a few seconds before starting the car it seems to start when ignition is turned straight after . Would this be a spark plug issue or a starter motor issue? Battery been replaced recently which I thought may help but hasn't. Not sure if its just the cold weather but seems to be getting worse possibly?

    Got a petrol 1.6 astra twintop 07 plate 40k on clock.

    Any help appreciated.

    36 Comments

    I'm not a mechanic but my understanding of how cars work "when I put key to 'on' for a few seconds before starting the car it seems to start when ignition is turned straight after" sounds more like it might be the fuel pump.

    Is your car diesel?

    Original Poster

    BagABargain78

    Is your car diesel?



    No its petrol. I did put that in the original post.

    Change spark plugs and wires.

    Bradex easy start spray from Halfords will rectify this as I had the same issue with my Astra too.

    Only about £4 a can which lasts ages

    Could be another duff battery? I used to work in car motor factors and some battery's stay on the shelf for nearly a year depending on how bad weather is, we always charged them and checked them before leaving the depot, but depending on where you got it from they may not have checked it.

    If it was plugs or wires, you would still have issues after starting, like a misfire. What caused the battery to fail in first place? Did anyone check the alternator to see if was putting out enough charge? If not battery will slowly drain and fail.
    Edited by: "stoneblade" 25th Jan

    Original Poster

    stoneblade

    Could be another duff battery? I used to work in car motor factors and … Could be another duff battery? I used to work in car motor factors and some battery's stay on the shelf for nearly a year depending on how bad weather is, we always charged them and checked them before leaving the depot, but depending on where you got it from they may not have checked it. If it was plugs or wires, you would still have issues after starting, like a misfire.



    The alternator is working fine on the car I've tested with my tester and a friends as well.

    I'll check the battery tomorrow i've got a portable battery tester. Had a bit of an issue with the replacement of the battery which is on another thread (long story). It has started up every time except when i pulled the key back again so it turned the engine to 'on'. Like I say, if i turn the key to 'on' and leave for 1-2 seconds and then start ignition it seems to work immediately, although tested that method earlier and it took slightly longer than immediate (I know that sounds odd, but you know what your car sounds like when starting).

    Edited by: "stephen2k5" 25th Jan

    stephen2k5

    No its petrol. I did put that in the original post.



    Apologies. I missed that detail. Could it not just be the colder weather?

    Original Poster

    JoelUK

    Bradex easy start spray from Halfords will rectify this as I had the same … Bradex easy start spray from Halfords will rectify this as I had the same issue with my Astra too.Only about £4 a can which lasts ages



    Did that fix it long term or just temporarily. Says that its for emergencies, and i've not had it not start up yet.

    Original Poster

    BagABargain78

    Apologies. I missed that detail. Could it not just be the colder weather?



    I'm hoping it is haha.

    When was the last service done on the car? Maybe the fuel filter is allowing fuel to seep back into the tank, which means the fuel pump needs a couple of extra seconds to get it to the injectors? I had an audi with similar issue, was a one way valve on the fuel line.

    stephen2k5

    Did that fix it long term or just temporarily. Says that its for … Did that fix it long term or just temporarily. Says that its for emergencies, and i've not had it not start up yet.



    ​That will be a temporary fix, as it just gives the engine a quick boost of flammable vapour to jump start it basically.

    Original Poster

    stoneblade

    When was the last service done on the car? Maybe the fuel filter is … When was the last service done on the car? Maybe the fuel filter is allowing fuel to seep back into the tank, which means the fuel pump needs a couple of extra seconds to get it to the injectors? I had an audi with similar issue, was a one way valve on the fuel line.



    I'd have to check that to be fair, I've had it just under a year and the guy I got it from said he had it serviced with its last MOT which was around November 2015 (I did have it MOT'd last November 2016 and it passed no advisories etc) so about 14-15 months ago if he's to be believed, I think I remember him saying he serviced it last himself as he used to be a mechanic. It's only done 40k and I don't do many long trips it is all local trips to work which is 10-15 minute drive

    We had a astra mk4 and had a similar problem , 1.6 16v Sxi 2002 model
    FSH with 72k , well serviced
    We initially thought rings as took ages to start if not used but used regular was fine
    Compression test was fine and didn't burn any oil
    We did a service , new plugs and fuel filter
    Etc etc .....
    No change
    The thing we noted was when you turned the ignition to prime the system the fuel had dropped to far down to the tank
    Hence turning it over and it having no fuel as rail was empty
    It didn't affect the car driving in any way
    You just had to turn it over for 15-20 seconds every so often

    Original Poster

    Bradleigh

    We had a astra mk4 and had a similar problem , 1.6 16v Sxi 2002 modelFSH … We had a astra mk4 and had a similar problem , 1.6 16v Sxi 2002 modelFSH with 72k , well servicedWe initially thought rings as took ages to start if not used but used regular was fineCompression test was fine and didn't burn any oil We did a service , new plugs and fuel filterEtc etc .....No changeThe thing we noted was when you turned the ignition to prime the system the fuel had dropped to far down to the tankHence turning it over and it having no fuel as rail was emptyIt didn't affect the car driving in any wayYou just had to turn it over for 15-20 seconds every so often



    I'd be happy if I knew it was was just something I had to deal with to be fair. I'm hoping its just a cold weather thing.

    When it's cold mine takes a bit longer . There's a fair bit running off your battery in colder weather , demisters , lights , etc . Does it still do it after a decent run ? .. 10 mins to the shop prob ain't charging the battery enough .

    Nothing wrong with it at all.
    Your car burns Petrol to work. When it's colder it's harder to burn things.
    Turning the key and leaving it a few seconds gives your engine a chance to prime the fuel ready for the ignition.
    Very common in Vauxhalls

    Keep doing what you are doing and it will be fine.

    Does it do it on just cold start, or when engine running and you turn off turn on again hesitate? Don't know if it can be done on an astra, but I diagnosed fuel drawing back into engine by putting a short clear pipe between one of the hoses, this will show air in the pipes. But wouldn't recommend past injection pump as it's high pressure and could hurt yourself, actually don't recommend doing anything unless you have a inkling on what your doing full stop lol.

    I'd go with fuel pump as sounds similar to one we had
    Believe fuel pump is in the tank as well and it has a inspection hole under a circular black cap under the rear seat
    My bro pointed me to this thread btw
    Hth

    Original Poster

    Its only on a cold start. It's fine once I turn engine off once it's starter it's good as gold and starts up a treat. If I start it up and then leave it a few seconds, turn it off and start it up again works immediately. Again turning key and leaving it just a couple of secs managed to get it starting ok. It's only been in the last month or so where we've had significantly colder weather like down at the minus temps. We live at the very top of southampton so I guess when it's cold overnight it does get real cold. I'm more concerned I'm not doing any real damage to anything.

    Being honest if it was me I would live with it until it gets worse, always easier to diagnose when something fully breaks! Might be worth just doing the battery check so you can get a replacement if you need. Check service as the car should be regularly serviced, I think on astra is yearly in your case as low mileage. If it turns out to be the pump you will find it gets worse and worse til you have other issues like loosing power, miss fires and finally won't start at all. Always start with cheap items first, as if you go straight for costly part 9/10 times it doesn't fix the issue :-( Or get a professional you trust to diagnose for you.
    Edited by: "stoneblade" 25th Jan

    Original Poster

    stoneblade

    Being honest if it was me I would live with it until it gets worse, … Being honest if it was me I would live with it until it gets worse, always easier to diagnose when something fully breaks! Might be worth just doing the battery check so you can get a replacement if you need. Check service as the car should be regularly serviced, I think on astra is yearly in your case as low mileage. If it turns out to be the pump you will find it gets worse and worse til you have other issues like loosing power, miss fires and finally won't start at all.



    I'll check the battery, but if the battery is low on charge this garage are gonna even more to deal with than they already are with me! (_;)

    I'll probably do the cheap stuff first like spark plugs/fuel filter etc before moving on to the more expensive stuff

    could be fuel lines not pressurizing as they should do normally

    Original Poster

    tomminator

    could be fuel lines not pressurizing as they should do normally


    What is required to sort that out?

    If it was fuel lines not pressurised it would be fuel pump issue, again would see more issues than just starting issue, you would see a drop in power as you pull away as fuel wouldn't be delivered quick enough.

    At the end of the day people could be saying this or that, and you'll be pulling your hair out worried the engine is about to keel over. If the car gets worse and the small fixes don't work, I'd seek a professional to save your money in the long run.

    prash_2k

    Nothing wrong with it at all. Your car burns Petrol to work. When it's … Nothing wrong with it at all. Your car burns Petrol to work. When it's colder it's harder to burn things. Turning the key and leaving it a few seconds gives your engine a chance to prime the fuel ready for the ignition. Very common in VauxhallsKeep doing what you are doing and it will be fine.



    ​I'd probably go with this one leave expensive stuff out but I'm not sure what the service intervals are in vauxhall but most recommend 12.months for oik change if the mileage is low so if it's been nearly 15 16 months just get thay changed is it very dirty the engine oil. take the spark plugs out and see what they look like in short driving sometimes they get a bit dirty aswell if they look bad just replace them aswell otherwise just wait and see if it gets any worse otherwise don't start throwing money at stuff and battery wouldn't give u that problem it would be different.

    drain the fuel pump and change the fuel filter

    I've just had this exact problem with a Corsa D.
    The battery wasn't flat where all you get is clicking of the solenoid.
    It was more of a "groan", trying to turn over but wouldn't start.
    I was doing the same as you by turning the ignition on for 10 seconds ish then turning to start and it would just turn over enough to start.
    Took it to my local Vauxhall dealer and a mechanic checked the condition of the battery.
    Although the voltage was correct it was lacking the cranking Amps required to start.
    Long winded answer I know but, I replaced the battery and it now starts perfectly

    stephen2k5

    Its only on a cold start. It's fine once I turn engine off once it's … Its only on a cold start. It's fine once I turn engine off once it's starter it's good as gold and starts up a treat. If I start it up and then leave it a few seconds, turn it off and start it up again works immediately. Again turning key and leaving it just a couple of secs managed to get it starting ok. It's only been in the last month or so where we've had significantly colder weather like down at the minus temps. We live at the very top of southampton so I guess when it's cold overnight it does get real cold. I'm more concerned I'm not doing any real damage to anything.



    ​if it's only on a cold start and if it's working when you turn the key for a few seconds before turning on the ignition I'd wait until the weather picks up, too many people jump to conclusions in winter and waste a lot of money (used to work at Euro car parts and we made loads more sales to casual people in winter).

    I'm now an industrial electrician and it's incredible the amount of electrical problems the cold can cause, a big problem we have is getting cold motors to start, they pull a lot higher current. So I'm guessing it could just be the same with starter motors demanding more current from the battery and other electronics on the car.

    But yeah, I'd give it a few weeks for the weather to pick up a bit and if it's still a problem then take it in, no point wasting money unless you have to!

    That's why I always recommend going to local independent factors, you might be paying a couple of extra pounds, but they might save you a few quid as they aren't commission driven. We always tested customers batteries to make sure they were bad, before recommending a new one, yeah it may have lost a sale then but always came back because they trusted us. I use eurocarparts for cheap parts still, but know what I'm going in for.

    To the original op I forgot to say in my post that if your battery tester doesn't do a load test I'd recommend going to somewhere that does, as a standard battery tester will just show its holding power not if it can provide enough power under crank. Most places should do this free of charge. Just to cross a few things off your list.

    stephen2k5

    What is required to sort that out?




    A mechanic.

    It sounds like not enough cold cranking amps but as you've already changed your battery assuming not a dud and it's adequate for your car then probably the fuel delivery. You stated that if you switch ignition on and wait a few seconds it starts, That will probably be because it allows the fuel enough time to prime the fuel rail etc.. I recall when I had a Zafira when I was parked at a certain angle i,e up hill or tilted left or right it wouldn't start if I was lowish on fuel. It was fine if I had more than quarter tank but would read empty and fail to start otherwise.

    Everything is a little stiffer in the colder weather, The oil is thicker etc... and the batteries aren't as good in cold weather so there is more resistance.

    You could give it a service and that'll help reduce resistance etc..

    Also could be throttle position, When you disconnected the old battery the ecu resets itself, So the throttle position could be slightly out. You could try resetting it again.
    Usually this it the process without diagnostics software.

    1. Disconnect battery terminals, Touch negative and positive cables together, ( Not the battery ), That will get rid of any residue power so resets the ecu etc.. Or you could wait with the cables off for a while, turn lights on with the battery disconnected of course.

    2. Reconnect battery.

    3. Switch ignition on to position two, Don't start it.

    4. Press the accelerator all the way to the floor and keep it there for 5-10 seconds.

    5. Quickly remove foot off accelerator.

    6. Turn off ignition.

    7. Turn on ignition, start car and go for drive, Try and go on a mixture of roads and don't thrash it, Try to go through all the gears etc..

    Follow that procedure every time you disconnect battery as it'll help maximize fuel economy, The car is in "Learn mode" for a period of time.

    If it ticks over fine when started up it's unlikely to be anything major to worry about.

    If it is struggling to start all the time then there are a few things that will wear out.

    The starter motor is likely to overheat, Excess strain on the battery, Dry fuel lines could damage fuel pump as the fuel acts as a lubricate for the pump etc.. Shouldn't damage the engine itself though.

    prash_2k

    Nothing wrong with it at all. Your car burns Petrol to work. When it's … Nothing wrong with it at all. Your car burns Petrol to work. When it's colder it's harder to burn things. Turning the key and leaving it a few seconds gives your engine a chance to prime the fuel ready for the ignition. Very common in VauxhallsKeep doing what you are doing and it will be fine.



    I wasn't aware that petrol cars 'primed' the fuel - can you please explain what exactly happens?

    Bigfootpete

    I wasn't aware that petrol cars 'primed' the fuel - can you please … I wasn't aware that petrol cars 'primed' the fuel - can you please explain what exactly happens?


    The fuel pump sends fuel to the fuel rail and then to the injectors, That can take a small amount of time, To basically lift fuel out of the fuel tank>fuel rail>injectors.

    Original Poster

    Thanks for your help guys. It's been very helpful and I'll try a few bits mentioned here. Spark plugs being a start and I'll chuck the car in for a service. I managed to get it going ok this morning by turning to on for roughly 2-3 seconds whilst electrics got going and then turned it on and voila it started straight away. But I'll keep tabs on it for the next few weeks whilst the cold weather is here

    If its turning over ok then it wont be the battery, if its starting ok after being switched on for a few seconds then it wont be spark plugs, as others have said its more likely to be a fuel issue, it sounds like the fuel pump is taking a little longer to prime and pressurise the system maybe once left for some time a small air leak is allowing air in the fuel pipes
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