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No start when parked nose-up; otherwise fine - SOLVED (I think)
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korfmach
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 27, 2020 11:51 am    Post subject: No start when parked nose-up; otherwise fine - SOLVED (I think) Reply with quote

Hi Everyone--van is an '89 2.1, stock other than Marco Mansi injectors. Engine runs fine under all circumstances; starts fine too except when I park nose-first in my driveway, which puts the front of the van about half a meter higher than the rear. If I let it sit an hour or two, it will crank but won't start.

I've seen a couple of other threads with sort-of similar problems, but none seemed definitive. I don't think it's an electrical/Hall sensor issue as the van runs and starts fine under all other circumstances, including going up steep slopes on highways or back roads. My thought is that it's a fuel issue of some sort. Anyone have any guesses?
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Last edited by korfmach on Thu Jan 14, 2021 3:04 pm; edited 1 time in total
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DanHoug
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 27, 2020 6:00 pm    Post subject: Re: No start when parked nose-up; otherwise fine Reply with quote

aaaaand how much gas do you have in the tank when this is not starting? fill it up, then try it again. don't go by the gauge, just fill it and try.
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4Gears4Tires
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 30, 2020 8:52 am    Post subject: Re: No start when parked nose-up; otherwise fine Reply with quote

Shouldn't the FPR still hold pressure? Or does the van bleed pressure down over time and that's why it primes for 2 seconds each key ON turn?

I agree about the gas being the KISS solution.
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Wildthings
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 30, 2020 9:11 am    Post subject: Re: No start when parked nose-up; otherwise fine Reply with quote

Hook up a fuel pressure gauge and see how fast the pressure is dropping as you might have an injector that is leaking through and filling your intake with raw gas. The Bentley has a spec on how fast of a drop in pressure is acceptable.

Have you checked for spark? That is about the easiest place to start.
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DuncanS
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 30, 2020 9:25 am    Post subject: Re: No start when parked nose-up; otherwise fine Reply with quote

I like Wildthings post. It could be a wire that is loose and grounding out. A half meter height diff is far greater than you would experience driving as that is an 11% slope.
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MarkWard
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 30, 2020 11:45 am    Post subject: Re: No start when parked nose-up; otherwise fine Reply with quote

I would like to hear how it does with a completely full tank as well. While the outlet and return are on the back side, there is quite a bit of plumbing on the interior of the tank that might have an issue and it is allowing air to get drawn into the fuel pump inlet.
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korfmach
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 13, 2020 8:40 am    Post subject: Re: No start when parked nose-up; otherwise fine Reply with quote

All, thanks very much for your replies.

The FPR passes the idle and higher-rpm pressure tests (I think 28 and 34 psi, respectively) but I haven't checked it for maintaining pressure after shutoff. The pump does prime for a second or two on almost every start.

I'm starting to think it's a pressure bleed-down issue. Ordinarily when I start it, I turn the key immediately all the way to the "start" position. Next time I park on the incline, I'll let the pump fully prime before turning the key the rest of the way and see if that makes a difference.
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1989 Westy
2016 Golf TSI

Gone, but not forgotten:
1974 Dorper Baywindow, "The Bleeding Trout"
1998 Jetta TDI, "Trixie"
1987 GTI, "Heike"
1974 Thing, "The Luftwaffel"
1974 Ghia
1966 Ghia
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Igeo
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 13, 2020 8:54 am    Post subject: Re: No start when parked nose-up; otherwise fine Reply with quote

Food for thought. This is how the plumbing inside the tank looks. With low fuel levels, the pick up may be uncovered on a slope.

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.

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davideric9
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 13, 2020 9:11 am    Post subject: Re: No start when parked nose-up; otherwise fine Reply with quote

I agree, easiest thing to do is fill the tank, then park on the hill and see what happens. Then if no start, do the rest of the recommended tests.

This can also happen...

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korfmach
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 14, 2021 3:06 pm    Post subject: Re: No start when parked nose-up; otherwise fine - SOLVED (I think) Reply with quote

I replaced the 32-year-old ignition switch and the hard start condition hasn't returned. I started having difficulties in places other than my driveway and started looking...I think the nose-up parking context was coincidental.
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1989 Westy
2016 Golf TSI

Gone, but not forgotten:
1974 Dorper Baywindow, "The Bleeding Trout"
1998 Jetta TDI, "Trixie"
1987 GTI, "Heike"
1974 Thing, "The Luftwaffel"
1974 Ghia
1966 Ghia
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sanchius Premium Member
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 14, 2021 4:54 pm    Post subject: Re: No start when parked nose-up; otherwise fine - SOLVED (I think) Reply with quote

Thanks for the follow-up.
Ignition switch faults can be tricky to diagnose.
I always keep a spare in the storage under the seat because they are so easy to swap in when troubleshooting.
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danfromsyr
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 14, 2021 9:18 pm    Post subject: Re: No start when parked nose-up; otherwise fine - SOLVED (I think) Reply with quote

indeed. and just because you have a new $15 switch doesn't mean it'll last anywhere as long as the OEM unit did..
I suggest ALWAYS carrying a spare switch in the parts stash.
there's a reason electric parts aren't accepted as a return. they're not reliable
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