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 Post subject: No start unless cam sensor unplugged
PostPosted: Wed Dec 24, 2008 1:24 pm 
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2000 Neon SOHC. No spark on cylinders 1-4, good spark on 2-3. Coil wiring checks good, put new dealer PCM, replaced coil. Car will only start with cam sensor unplugged, plug it in and it dies. No fault codes except cam sensor , which only appeared after I unplugged it. Before unplugging had no fault codes.


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 Post subject: Re: No start unless cam sensor unplugged
PostPosted: Wed Dec 24, 2008 4:18 pm 
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If your getting a cam sensor code I would replace that first lol.
Its cheap and easy to swap out. Took me about 10-15 minutes

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 Post subject: Re: No start unless cam sensor unplugged
PostPosted: Wed Dec 24, 2008 5:50 pm 
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Check the voltages at the unplugged connector with the key-on/engine-off. Then backprobe the connectors and check the voltages again.

Orange/Blue Wire: 9.0v
Grey/Yellow Wire: 5.0v (toggling 0.0v-5.0v w/ engine cranking and sensor plugged in)
Black/Blue Wire: 0.0v

I'm betting the sensor is shorted and taking out the 9v needed to make the crank/cam sensors work.

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 Post subject: Re: No start unless cam sensor unplugged
PostPosted: Wed Dec 24, 2008 7:52 pm 
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Floyd wrote:
If your getting a cam sensor code I would replace that first lol.
Its cheap and easy to swap out. Took me about 10-15 minutes



He said the code came after he had it unplugged.

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 Post subject: Re: No start unless cam sensor unplugged
PostPosted: Fri Dec 26, 2008 8:02 am 
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I checked the cam sensor wiring voltage and it checks good. If the cam timing is off even a tiny bit, will it cause this condition? I dread taking the front cover apart if I dont have to, I heard it is a real pain in the...


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 Post subject: Re: No start unless cam sensor unplugged
PostPosted: Fri Dec 26, 2008 3:50 pm 
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I would say it is very rare to have the cam timing off if the timing belt has never been touched AND nothing is physically broken. I would think you would know if something along those lines broke.

But, like asked before... have you changed the cam position sensor? Have you messed with end of the cam where the sensor reads? I'm assuming that you just unplugged the sensor, did what you had to do, then plugged it back? What were you doing to begin with?

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 Post subject: Re: No start unless cam sensor unplugged
PostPosted: Fri Dec 26, 2008 5:02 pm 
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The timing belt was supposedly changed last year. To begin, there was no spark on cyl 1 and 4 but good spark on 2 and 3. No fault codes. I bought a new factory pcm, and a new coil, checked the cam wiring and coil wiring. Car would not start, just crank and a few back fires. I unplugged tha cam sensor and the car started right up. I plug in the cam sensor while it is runningand it dies.


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 Post subject: Re: No start unless cam sensor unplugged
PostPosted: Fri Dec 26, 2008 5:47 pm 
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jerryrom wrote:
The timing belt was supposedly changed last year. To begin, there was no spark on cyl 1 and 4 but good spark on 2 and 3. No fault codes. I bought a new factory pcm, and a new coil, checked the cam wiring and coil wiring. Car would not start, just crank and a few back fires. I unplugged tha cam sensor and the car started right up. I plug in the cam sensor while it is runningand it dies.


When did the car last run with the cam sensor plugged in? Has it been driven since the timing belt was replaced? I've never had *my* cam sensor go bad, so I can't speak on that, but the car is capable of running without one. It (the cam sensor) is needed for sequential injection. So without it, the PCM *may be* running in bank mode (which means it'll run). But, when you connect the sensor, it tries to go into sequential and it cannot because (I'm guessing) the cam magnet is possibly backwards. It being backwards would cause the car to backfire because the timing would be off.

This is why I asked when was the last time it was running. I'm guessing with the sensor removed, cyl 1&4 do fire? (Proving that all the hardware required to make them fire are working.)

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 Post subject: Re: No start unless cam sensor unplugged
PostPosted: Fri Dec 26, 2008 6:21 pm 
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I bought the car in a not running condition, and the validity of what I was told can not be confirmed. I was told it ran when it was parked and they went to start it a year later and it would not start. The cam belt and water pump was replaced long before the no start. I bought it, and noticed someone chamnged the pcm with the wrong one so I started there with the correct one. I changed the pcm and coil. Checked the wiring continuity and voltages. Everyitng seems to work correctly. I am stumped. I have been tinkering now for about 4 weeks trying to get it going


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 Post subject: Re: No start unless cam sensor unplugged
PostPosted: Fri Dec 26, 2008 6:30 pm 
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jerryrom wrote:
I bought the car in a not running condition, and the validity of what I was told can not be confirmed. I was told it ran when it was parked and they went to start it a year later and it would not start. The cam belt and water pump was replaced long before the no start. I bought it, and noticed someone chamnged the pcm with the wrong one so I started there with the correct one. I changed the pcm and coil. Checked the wiring continuity and voltages. Everyitng seems to work correctly. I am stumped. I have been tinkering now for about 4 weeks trying to get it going


Start it up again with the sensor unplugged. Lets confirm that it'll idle without the sensor. If it idles fine without it, remove the sensor completely. You'll see the bottom of the cam and there is a magnet that you can flip around and reverse the phase the sensor reads.

Try that.

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 Post subject: Re: No start unless cam sensor unplugged
PostPosted: Fri Dec 26, 2008 9:09 pm 
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The engine will run and idle with the cam sensor unplugged. I tried what you said, take the magnet out and reverse it. That was a big waste. The magnet is indexed so it can only be installed one way.

Does anyone know why my car will not run unless I unplug the cam sensor?? I get no fault codes.


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 Post subject: Re: No start unless cam sensor unplugged
PostPosted: Fri Dec 26, 2008 11:20 pm 
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Is there any chance the CPS and coil connectors are swapped? They will fit in either position. This is a long shot, tho. Not sure it would idle well. This is a relatively common mistake when stuff gets tore down and reassembled. It is worth a shot.

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 Post subject: Re: No start unless cam sensor unplugged
PostPosted: Sat Dec 27, 2008 8:30 am 
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Alright, I have read pages of posts since joining recently and there are a lot of you guys in here that are very experienced with Neon issues. Can some of you please review my posts and offer some valid advice as to why my car will not run? I am ready to tow it to the dealer and get it up the ............. i am out of ideas.


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 Post subject: Re: No start unless cam sensor unplugged
PostPosted: Sat Dec 27, 2008 8:52 pm 
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FWIW, you've been given some good advice and some outside the box ideas. Be nice to the people who are only trying to help. :yes: The cam magnet dealie was on 1st gens, BTW.
So lets make a list of what we know:
The PCM is new.
The coilpack is new (is the mating surface between the coil & the valvecover clean?).
1&4 (which fire together, IIRC) don't fire when the CPS is plugged in.

The car runs fine without the CPS plugged in. Which means that mechanically, the car is in good shape--cam timing is not the issue...its almost like a ground is. Could just be what everyone is suggesting, a bad CPS. But someone please correct me if I'm wrong, but doesn't a bad battery temp sensor create all hell like this?

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 Post subject: Re: No start unless cam sensor unplugged
PostPosted: Sat Dec 27, 2008 9:10 pm 
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Hi. I am being nice. Believe me, I truly appreciate all suggestions!! I think this forum and the users are all great. I am just frustrated at my car. You are correct, the car runs withcam sensor unplugged. I checked every wire I can think of so far andthey all seem to test good. THe carr does not seem to run that good with thesensor unplugged. It starts off sluggish idling and then speeds up and then is up and down and does not have very good throttle response. I am really baffled. Like I mentioned, there are no fault codes. It had the wrong pcm when I bought it and the pcm had a fault code for low ais voltage but I have not seen that code with the new pcm so far . I think it was a p0508. Also the oil light is contantly on when the engine is running. Thank you for any help. Jerry


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 Post subject: Re: No start unless cam sensor unplugged
PostPosted: Sat Dec 27, 2008 10:23 pm 
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Jerry, I'd hate to waste your time again, but if you've replaced the PCM, coil, wires, plugs, checked voltage at the coil, the only things left are the CMP and/or the CKP. Replace them and save yourself any further frustration. Personally, I'd get them from the junkyard for pennies rather than the stealership.

But, to each his own. You may want the piece of mind knowing that they are brand new pieces that are known to function.

Good luck.

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 Post subject: Re: No start unless cam sensor unplugged
PostPosted: Sat Dec 27, 2008 10:56 pm 
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Hi. Thanks for the advice. I will try new sensors. Do you think one of them could be bad and not trip a fault code? That is the only reason I have not tried that yet because the lack of fault codes led me to believe they might not be the problem. But hey, we have all seen crazy things that dont make sense, right??


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 Post subject: Re: No start unless cam sensor unplugged
PostPosted: Sun Dec 28, 2008 10:07 am 
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Yeah, it's not uncommon for a cam position sensor to be going but not throw a code. And after doing a little more research, I don't think the BTS is your isssue. Still, the fact that when you make a connection, your car dies...just suggests ground to me. I agree with 2KNRES, though--replace your sensors and go from there. But for giggles, I'd check your engine bay for some loose or hanging grounds.

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 Post subject: Re: No start unless cam sensor unplugged
PostPosted: Mon Dec 29, 2008 8:17 am 
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Hi. I tried changing the cam sensor and still the same problem. Do you have any idea as to which grounds to look at for a possibility, and where they are located. Thank you. Jerry


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 Post subject: Re: No start unless cam sensor unplugged
PostPosted: Mon Dec 29, 2008 8:50 am 
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I'll check my engine bay over my lunch break. What *seems* like is happening, IMO, is that your coilpack harness is being used as a major ground. So it would be a ground connected to the same subharness. If that's the problem. But its my best suggestion right now. I'm going to assume that you've already checked the related fuses and relays...?
Another possible side of this is that you have a transponder key. You said the PCM was originally found to be the wrong one. The way Sentry (name of the security system) works is that it verifies the VIN in the instrument cluster module with the VIN in the PCM. I'm not sure if the cluster module can be reprogrammed or verified, but that's something to ask a friendly local service manager. Could be that the PO did some wrangling? Generally, the way Sentry killswitch works, is that the car can be started 3 times but it will run for 2-3 seconds and shut off. Then its not supposed to work again until the right key with the right code gets verified by the PCM and the cluster module.

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 Post subject: Re: No start unless cam sensor unplugged
PostPosted: Mon Dec 29, 2008 8:59 am 
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Hi Matt. Yes I checked all the fuses and relays. I bought a new pcm and had the vin programmed for the key. The car runs so I ruled that out. It just wont run with the cam sensor pluged in. Let me run this by you, If the cam timing slipped, could it be out of sync enough that the two sensors are out of sync , not letting the car start, but timing being close enough to run without the cam signal? I would think I would get some sort of fault code though if this were the case. Thank you for all your help so far. Jerry


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 Post subject: Re: No start unless cam sensor unplugged
PostPosted: Mon Dec 29, 2008 9:37 am 
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Jerry, the sensors should not be killing signal to the coilpack. And the car runs, just in limp mode without the CPS (which is how it should be). I don't think the timing is an issue...I would leave retiming the car as a last-resort kind of thing. It's not especially hard to time these cars, just the tear-down is a serious PITA.

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 Post subject: Re: No start unless cam sensor unplugged
PostPosted: Mon Dec 29, 2008 1:52 pm 
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Hi Matt
I will try to look at the wiring tonight when I get home. Regarding a ground issue, I think you are on to something though because the oil light is constantly on and I believe the oil light is triggered by the sensor grounding the wire, which could be the same somehow. Maybe I should get a engine harness from the junk yard and replace it. Thank you for all of your replies. Jerry


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 Post subject: Re: No start unless cam sensor unplugged
PostPosted: Mon Dec 29, 2008 2:15 pm 
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If your oil light is on and its not the oil sensor malfunctioning then it might be the cars computer.
I know the oil pressure switch wire goes from the sensor directly to the computer.
So if the wire is ok on that then it could be a broken switch. But if the switch is ok and the wire is ok that only leaves the computer.

On the camshaft sensor it gets 5v supply through the orange wire.
It grounds through the BK/LB wire and it sends the signal through the TN/YL.
It gets all 3 of those directly from the computer also.

5V is pin 29 on C2
GND is pin 27 on C2
SIG is pin 34 on C2

C2 is the second connector on the computer from the top IIRC.

For what its worth the CRANKSHAFT sensor gets 5v and GND from the same pins on the computer and its signal is pin 35 on C2.

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 Post subject: Re: No start unless cam sensor unplugged
PostPosted: Mon Dec 29, 2008 3:07 pm 
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I need me a FSM like you've got, Floyd. Maybe when my local Dodge dealer goes under, I can snag one cheap. :grin:

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 Post subject: Re: No start unless cam sensor unplugged
PostPosted: Mon Dec 29, 2008 5:03 pm 
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Hi

I already replaced the pcm and verified the wiring to the sensors. I am getting voltage to them. As for the oil sensor, it may be bad or the wiring could be shorted, I have not lookeda t that yet. I am trying to get it running first. I am at my wits end on this thing !!!!!


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 Post subject: Re: No start unless cam sensor unplugged
PostPosted: Tue Dec 30, 2008 7:21 am 
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Hmm dont know. It is odd though.

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 Post subject: Re: No start unless cam sensor unplugged
PostPosted: Tue Dec 30, 2008 8:17 am 
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Here is a recap so far
No spark on cyl 1-4, good spark on 2-3, car will not start unless I unplug cam sensor, verified wires have correct voltage supply to cam sensor and coil, replaced coil,cam sensor,pcm, no fault codes. Any other ideas to try????


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 Post subject: Re: No start unless cam sensor unplugged
PostPosted: Wed Dec 31, 2008 9:20 am 
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I'll start looking at grounds, Jerry. I can't remember--did you replace or test the crank sensor and its connections?

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 Post subject: Re: No start unless cam sensor unplugged
PostPosted: Wed Dec 31, 2008 9:24 am 
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Hi Matt
I have not replaced the crank sensor, only because I didnt see a faut code for crank, and because I thought if it were bad, the ASD would shut down. I could try it for grins. Jerry


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 Post subject: Re: No start unless cam sensor unplugged
PostPosted: Wed Dec 31, 2008 9:43 am 
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I'm sure there's a test for voltage or something in the FSM...?

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 Post subject: Re: No start unless cam sensor unplugged
PostPosted: Wed Dec 31, 2008 9:45 am 
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I already gave test points for both the cam and crank sensor in this thread.
Both sensors get GND and 5V from the same place on the PCM.

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 Post subject: Re: No start unless cam sensor unplugged
PostPosted: Wed Dec 31, 2008 9:57 am 
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Yes, I verified the voltage and ground to be ok on the cam,crank, and coil circuits. I just need a large backhoe and a land fill now to bury this POS.


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 Post subject: Re: No start unless cam sensor unplugged
PostPosted: Wed Dec 31, 2008 11:37 am 
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Here's the thing that gets me:
The car runs like it should when the PCM gets no input from the CPS, which is crappy, but on all cylinders. When you plug in the CPS, the coil shuts down 1 & 4, which are fired together (dead spark setup).
So logically (and please chime in, Guys), the CPS signal influences the the PCM to not fire 1 & 4. Then the problem must lie between the CPS to the PCM and/or the PCM to the coil. This is a crappy test to suggest, and I'm really sorry if it leads nowhere, but what happens when you jump out that loop? I'm essentially suggesting running new wires (or if you want, a new/junkyard harness) from the CPS to the PCM and PCM to coil.

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 Post subject: Re: No start unless cam sensor unplugged
PostPosted: Wed Dec 31, 2008 11:51 am 
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Mat
You are right on in your theory. I cut out and jumped the wire at the connector end of the pcm and the coil for the coil. I did not try it on the cam sensor though but the wires do check out good with a meter. I will look into obtaining a junk yard harness and try swapping it. At this point its the only part left. P.S. your package has been sent


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 Post subject: Re: No start unless cam sensor unplugged
PostPosted: Wed Dec 31, 2008 12:24 pm 
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I think what Mat said makes sense. I re-read this whole thread looking to see what's been tried, because at first, my strong opinion was just that it was a bad camshaft sensor. I believe the OP said he did finally replace it and it did not improve the problem. If he did not eventually replace it, that would be the most obvious starting point, IMO.

But re-reading, I got more of an overall picture of the car's recent history.
Previous owner claims the timing belt and water pump were replaced sometime in the past, and then the car was driven without issue for a while after.
Then, the PO claims that the car was parked, not driven for a whole year, and would not start back up a year later.

If we assume all that information to be true, does thinking about that stuff give anyone additional ideas? I was thinking exposure to the elements while parked could have coroded electrical connections and grounds. I also thought that the cam magnet itself might be no good, though I think I remember that this is a dealer-only item. But maybe other people have other ideas. I agree that it sounds electrical rather than mechanical though.

Incidentally, are there other problems he should look for that might be caused by sitting for a year without being driven?


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 Post subject: Re: No start unless cam sensor unplugged
PostPosted: Wed Dec 31, 2008 1:05 pm 
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Hi, are you implying the cam magnet could have gone bad? If that is the possibility, would it cause the problems I am seeing? Wouldn't it trip a fault code though? And would I still get good spark on the 2-3 cylinders or would it shut down the ASD? I could try to get one when I go to get a new harness. I am going to go out in the garage and mess around some more. Someone shoot me.


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 Post subject: Re: No start unless cam sensor unplugged
PostPosted: Wed Dec 31, 2008 2:46 pm 
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:empathy:

At this point, Jerry, I think anything is a possibility. And certainly something that plays a part in the direct influence of the CPS would be a legitimate item to look at. I can't remember the last time I heard of a cam magnet going, but I have heard of it. Frankly, excellent suggestion, Psych. Even if its nothing, I honestly wouldn't have come up with that.

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 Post subject: Re: No start unless cam sensor unplugged
PostPosted: Wed Dec 31, 2008 3:07 pm 
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Haha well thanks, but I can't take all the credit. Someone else already suggested reversing the polarity of the magnet, and that got me thinking about a possible bad magnet. I, too, think it's a long shot, but all the chip shots have already been taken. I don't know why I didn't think to suggest pulling one at the junkyard, especially since it will no doubt be dirt cheap there and very unlikely to be another bad one.

I don't know how the magnet is constructed or how the cam sensor directly affects firing. I would be hesitant to take a guess as to why it might affect your car. But the fact remains that when the sensor is plugged in, car no worky. When it is unplugged, car worky. Since you replaced the sensor and pcm and we can assume they're not the problem, that leaves to me only three main possibilities... bad magnet, electrical problem (wiring or ground somewhere), or slight timing error.

For some reason, my gut is telling me that you're going to end up having to play with the timing... that maybe it was done slightly incorrectly when it was done.

How confident are you in the seller's story that the car ran fine after a timing belt change and then was parked without running for a year? It seems unusual to leave a fully functional car untouched for a year in my experience, and I wonder if they were having problems with the car and after a year decided to sell rather than keep messing with it.


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 Post subject: Re: No start unless cam sensor unplugged
PostPosted: Wed Dec 31, 2008 7:32 pm 
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Joined: Wed Dec 24, 2008 8:50 am
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Ok guys. Here is an update and maybe someone can confirm my thoughts. I have totally ruled out wiring as the issue. I have ruled out hardware as the issue. My thoughts (as they have been from day one if you read all my posts) are that the cam timing is off enough that the car will run without the electronics involved but not with. I can unbolt the cam sensor and rotate it about 30 degrees clockwise (facing sensor) and the car will run. Soon as I turn it uprightwhere it belongs the car dies. The timing marks line up, BUT! I have been told that the 2.0 had issues witht the pin on the cam sprocket shearing causing the marks to remain aligned but the cam be turned several degrees causing the cam sensor to not work properly. I would like to hear from all of you with any thoughts. As always, thank you for any input. Jerry


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