Starting Problems And Fuel Tank
Posted 08 May 2012 - 11:40 AM
This is quite a strange story but bare with me :)
At the age of 18 my best friend bought the mini and on driving it home his mum said it was making a strange noise. (thought it was in need of a good service)
So when he got it home with no mechanical knowledge, a haynes manual and a halfords toolbox we attempted a DIY service.
This involved an oil change, new spark plugs, new HT leads and topping up the rad. It ran ok for a couple of days however after trying to start it up we found that it was turning over but that was it. It then sat for approximately 18 months.
He decided that the car was useless to him so I am now the owner.
I towed the car to my garage and charged the battery. I also put in a fiver of petrol and checked the oil and water.
Again starting had the same problems, the engine turns over but does not start.
Does anyone have any ideas what it could be or what I should check for?
Also whilst reconnecting the battery I found that a rubber hose coming from the top of the petrol tank had split in two. (couldn't get a pic my phone battery died)
Firstly what is the hose and could it have something to do with my starting problems?
Any help would be much appreciated :)
Posted 08 May 2012 - 12:07 PM
Not starting could be caused by many things.
You might want to check the ignition timing and the spark in general.
Could also check the float chamber for dirt etc and to see if there is any fuel in there.
If you suspect fuel delivery to be the problem you could manually put some fuel into the float chamber as this would be enough to start the car and this would confirm the fuel if it cuts out after a bit.
Posted 08 May 2012 - 12:09 PM
Normally I do not propose focusing on fuel problems from the start but you have a car that never ran well for you and was parked for 18 months. You say that now the engine turns over but does not start. Tip a thimble of gasoline down the carb throat and try to start the engine. If the engine bursts to life but quickly dies, you have a fuel delivery problem. If it still fails to start, you may have an ignition related problem. Post back with your results and I'm sure people here will post suggestions.
Posted 08 May 2012 - 12:27 PM
Posted 08 May 2012 - 03:52 PM
...and then working anti-clockwise around the distibutor the order is cylinder 1, 3, 4 then 2
ie looking at the front of the car the layout should be:
4 3 2 1
Does this apply to my mini?
Posted 10 May 2012 - 07:42 PM
tried to start again with no luck so first went to the spark plugs.
They were drenched in petrol!
Cleaned them put them back tried to start, she just about started and ran for 10-15 seconds died and wouldn't start again.
Took them out again and they were covered in petrol again.
I've left them out tonight but can anyone shed some light on this discovery?
Edited by Benjy25, 10 May 2012 - 07:43 PM.
Posted 10 May 2012 - 09:14 PM
If you have a Haynes or SU manual, follow the steps in it to gain access to the float valve and inspect it. If it has a metal tip and there are any ridges or rings on it, replace it. If the needle in the valve is brass with no ridges/ring or if the needle has a rubber (Viton) tip use spray carb cleaner and a cotton swab to clean out the inside of the needle seat and the tip of the needle.
If you do not have a Haynes or SU manual for the car, this is a good reason to buy one. For your immediate needs though, the SU web site has online technical documents you can read over that will walk you through how to access the needle valve and replace it.
Posted 12 May 2012 - 05:46 PM
After leaving the spark plugs out for 2 days I connected everything back together.
And HURRAYYY!!! she started... BUT sounded like a dog with a vacuum cleaner stuck in its spleen.
There was some backfiring which may have been the excess fuel burning off but there was also a leak from the manifold.
We took it off and the gasket was DEAD!
So a new gasket is on its way to me courtesy of mini spares :)
One quick question whilst I have this stripped out is there anything else I should replace/check ?
Posted 12 May 2012 - 07:15 PM
If funds allow, would be good to have the valves tapped in their seats, replace the stem seals and finally to have it skimmed.
Posted 13 May 2012 - 01:34 PM
Having the manifold out of the way may also give you the chance to clean the engine bay behind the carb. Take advantage of that opportunity to make things look good.
Posted 22 May 2012 - 07:59 PM
We put the new gaskets on, fitting a couple of new pipes and happy days she runs!!
And a lot better than previously.
She idles perfectly and drives great at low revs. HOWEVER...
As soon as you put your foot down she 'bogs down' and begins to backfire. (Which seems to be from both the carb and exhaust?)
I'm far from a mechanic but without putting ideas into anyones heads I think she might be over fuelling??
Any advice would be much appreciated,
Posted 23 May 2012 - 03:14 AM
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