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Tim's Auto Repair
Tim's Auto Repair, Mechanic
Category: Car
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Experience:  Have owned a repair shop for 25 yrs.
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1997 chevy silverado 5.7L wont start when sits for a few

Resolved Question:

1997 chevy silverado 5.7L won't start when sits for a few hours
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Car
Expert:  Tim's Auto Repair replied 6 years ago.
how much fuel pressure does it have when turning the starter and it wont start?
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
approx. 58lbs
Expert:  Tim's Auto Repair replied 6 years ago.
does it have the 58psi while the starter is turning the engine?
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Expert:  Tim's Auto Repair replied 6 years ago.


you need to check a few things when it wont start,,,first,check to make sure you have a spark on the plugs..a bad rotor ,cap or ignition module may give a fit sometimes..also,you may want to try starting fluid,,,these vortec engine must have 60 psi at all times,,,yours is on the borderline with the 58psi...the pump is a little weak


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fuel pressure

Testing and Inspection


Diagnostic Chart
Diagnostic Chart
Diagnostic Chart
Diagnostic Chart
Diagnostic Chart
Diagnostic Chart

Circuit Description

When you turn ON the ignition switch, the Vehicle Control Module (VCM) turns ON the in-tank fuel pump. The pump remains ON as long as the engine is cranking or running and the VCM is receiving reference pulses. If there are no reference pulses, the VCM shuts the fuel pump OFF within 2 seconds after you turn the ON the ignition or if the engine stops.

An electric fuel pump pumps the fuel through an in-line filter to the Central SFI unit. The pump is attached to the fuel level meter assembly inside of the fuel tank. The pump is designed in order to provide fuel at a pressure above the regulated pressure needed by the injectors. The pressure regulator keeps the fuel available to the injector at a regulated pressure. Unused fuel is returned to the fuel tank by a separate line.

Diagnostic Aids

Tools Required


  • J 34730-E Fuel Pressure Gauge.
  • J 34730-1A Fuel Pressure Gauge with J 34730-250 Fuel Pressure Adapter Kit.
  • d 42873-1 3/8 Fuel Feed Pipe Shutoff Valve and the J 42873-2 5/16 Fuel Return Pipe Shutoff Valve.

Test Description

The numbers below refer to the step numbers on the diagnostic table.

  1. Wrap a shop towel around the fuel pressure connection to absorb any small amount of fuel leakage that may occur when installing the fuel pressure gauge. Turn ON the ignition leaving the engine OFF, the fuel pressure should be 415-455 kPa (60-66 psi). This pressure is controlled by a spring pressure within the regulator assembly.
  1. The fuel pressure that continues to fall is caused by one of the following items:
    • The in-tank modular fuel sender is not holding pressure.
    • The fuel pressure regulator valve is leaking.
    • A Central SFI injector is leaking.
    • Fuel line is leaking.
  1. When the engine is idling, the manifold pressure is low (high vacuum) and is applied to the fuel pressure regulator diaphragm. This will offset the spring and result in a lower fuel pressure. This idle pressure will vary somewhat depending on the barometric pressure; however, the pressure at idle should be less indicating the pressure regulator control.
  1. If the fuel pressure is less than 415 kPa (60 psi), it falls into the following 3 areas:
    • The pressure is regulated but less than 415 kPa (60 psi).The amount of fuel reaching the injector is sufficient, but the pressure is too low. The system will run lean, hard starting cold, no start, overall poor performance, and may set a DTC.
    • A restricted flow causing pressure drop-Normally, a vehicle with a fuel pressure of less than 300 kPa (44 psi) at idle is inoperable. However, it the pressure drop occurs only while driving, the engine will normally surge then stop running as the pressure begins to drop rapidly. This is most likely caused by a restricted fuel line or plugged filter.
    • A leaking or contaminated pressure regulator valve or seat interface may not allow the regulated pressure to be achieved.

Notice: Do not allow the fuel pressure to exceed 517 kPa (75 psi). Excessive pressure may damage the fuel pressure regulator.

  1. Restricting the fuel return line allows the fuel pressure to build above regulated pressure. With the battery voltage applied to the fuel pump test terminal, the pressure should rise above 455 kPa (66 psi), as the valve in the return line is partially closed.
Engine Cranks, But Will Not Run


Diagnostic Chart
Enhanced Ignition System

Circuit Description

This table assumes that the battery condition and the engine cranking speed are OK, as well as having adequate fuel in the tank.

Diagnostic Aids

If no trouble is found in the fuel pump circuit or the ignition system and the cause of an Engine Cranks But Will Not Run has not been found, check for the following conditions:


  • Fouled spark plugs
  • An EGR valve stuck open
  • Low fuel pressure. Refer to Fuel System Diagnosis (System Check). See: Component Tests and General Diagnostics\System Check
  • Water or foreign material in the fuel system
  • A grounded Ignition Control (IC) signal circuit may cause a No Stan or a Start then Stall condition
  • Basic engine problem

The Vehicle Control Module(VCM has integrated IC circuits that are fault protected; therefore, if a circuit has failed, the integrated IC may not be damaged. If that is the case, the IC will keep the circuit open until the fault in the circuit has been corrected.

When the fault has been corrected, reinstall the VCM and check the circuit. Replace the VCM only if the circuit is still inoperative.

Test Description

The numbers below refer to the step numbers on the diagnostic tables.

  1. If the signal is over 2.5 volts, the engine may be in the clear flood mode which will cause starting problems.
  2. If the engine coolant sensor is below -30°C, the VCM provides fuel for this extremely cold temperature which will severely flood the engine.
  1. Use the injector test lamp J 34730-350 in order to test the injector circuit. A blinking lamp indicates that the VCM is controlling the injector.
  2. Voltage at the spark plugis checked using the spark plug tester tool J 26792. No spark indicates a basic ignition problem.
  3. This test will determines if there is fuel pressure at the fuel injection unit and holding steady.
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