How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Honda-Man Your Own Question
Honda-Man
Honda-Man, Honda Mechanic
Category: Honda
Satisfied Customers: 2890
Experience:  I have an Associates Degree in Automotive. 10 Years experience on all makes and models. 20 Years Honda only including factory training. Over 30 years total.
75670266
Type Your Honda Question Here...
Honda-Man is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

My 2007 ridgeline won't start. no previous issues. starter

Customer Question

my 2007 ridgeline won't start. no previous issues. starter cranks but won't start. timing belt was replaced about 4 months ago. I drove it to work with no problems then after work it wouldn't start.
Submitted: 9 months ago.
Category: Honda
Expert:  Honda-Man replied 9 months ago.

Welcome to Just-Answer. My name is ***** ***** online handle is Honda-Man. I have over 31 years experience repairing Honda and Acura vehicles. I may need to ask some questions before I can give an answer. As much detail as possible is greatly appreciated.

I have a few questions to get things started.

1) Does it turn over as fast as it usually does? Starter sounds good and strong?

2) Do the dash and instrument lights dim when you crank it?

3) What does the immobilizer green key indicator do when you crank it over? Same question for the check engine light?

Thank you, Honda-Man

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
the starter sounds strong and turns the engine but does sound odd. no clicking but it has a high pitched sound. maybe because of no fuel or spark?? the lights do not dim. my battery was under warranty so I got a replacement yesterday but the same issue persists. I key light and check engine lights do not illuminate.
Customer: replied 9 months ago.
I do hear the fuel pump when the key is in the ignition.
Customer: replied 9 months ago.
i replaced the timing belt myself a few months ago and haven't had any issues with this vehicle at all until the other day. what would be symptoms if that belt broke by some chance?
Expert:  Honda-Man replied 9 months ago.

Thanks for the quick reply and additional information. It sounds like it's flooded. It can also be related to the timing belt or camshaft timing being off. If it's just flooded initially and you keep trying to start it it will just get worse. Hold the throttle to the floor and crank it without letting up on the key. It can take a while but don't go longer than 15-20 seconds because it can overheat the starter. Fuel injected engines can flood believe it or not, it's more common than you might think. It makes that high pitched sound because the fuel in the cylinders has washed the piston rings reducing the compression. The symptoms of a slipped or broken timing belt will be the same as if it's flooded so lets hope that's not it. Try my suggestion first then let me know what happens please.

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
ok. i have to drive back to where it is so it'll be a little while before i can try it. so justto give some more detail. i drove to work at 6am, no issues, then at 6pm it wouldn't start. I'm just curious how it could become flooded without being driven or started?
Expert:  Honda-Man replied 9 months ago.

Flooding can happen if the engine does not start quickly then you let up on the key and repeat. Like won't start huh? think I will try again then you keep trying with just short attempts one after another. You may well have a slipped or out of time timing belt but I think it's worth a try to hold it to the floor and crank it. if it tries to catch keep on the key. might take several long cranks to get it started. If this does not work you will need to check the camshaft timing. Please let me know what happens. No hurry.

Thanks, Honda-Man

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
i tried starting it like you said...no help
i can see through the oil cap that everything is moving so the timing belt isn't broken.
there's fuel since it smells so what about ignition?
Expert:  Honda-Man replied 9 months ago.

Darn I was hoping it would work. If it's too flooded the plugs won't fire no mater what. They might need to be replaced. To check spark remove one coil and use a old or different plug inserted into the coil. Then crank it and watch the plug for spark. Make sure the end of the plug is sitting on a metal surface so the plug threads are grounded.

If the check engine light and immobilizer lights are not staying on there should be spark. The timing can slip or be of far enough to cause your problem. The cams can turn but if the timing is off it won't start and the compression will be lower. Only way to be sure is line up the timing marks or at least try to line them up. Set the crank pulley mark to the white TDC mark and see if the cams are lined up.

Expert:  Honda-Man replied 9 months ago.

The noise you describe is classic for a flooded engine or one with incorrect camshaft timing or a broken belt. I don't think you will have a ignition(spark) problem. It's going to be a lack of compression issue.

Expert:  Honda-Man replied 9 months ago.

Timing check instructions.

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
ok. is it logical to have a timing issue occur out of nowhere with zero symptoms beforehand? i replaced the belt and water pump 7 months ago and it's ran fine ever since. no sputtering or lack of power.
Customer: replied 9 months ago.
I'm having it towed home now so i'll tear it apart over the next couple days but it sure seems like something failed as opposed to a timing issue since it came out of the blue with no other associated problems.
Expert:  Honda-Man replied 9 months ago.

I still think it's flooded. The noise it's making is a classic symptom. If the timing belt tensioner fails it can jump time. They are hydraulic and can leak down. When you first start it the timing can jump, seen it many times at first start up. Timing belt failure never starts with a driveability issue like lack of power. It just happens suddenly and dies or won't start. All it takes is a few teeth off on the cam timing to cause a no start, dies when driving, or a loss of compression. It's easy to check the timing with the instructions I sent. Swap out the plugs and give it a try.

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
ok thanks. if the timing did jump will it cause any engine damage or can i just reset it?
Expert:  Honda-Man replied 9 months ago.

The V6 engines usually don't end up with valve piston contact damage. Especially since it didn't happen when driving. Contact usually makes a solid rude noise or the engine won't turn over because of mechanical interference. If it skipped time the belt should be replaced along with the tensioner. It can stretch or damage the belt even if it looks OK. Better safe than sorry don't want it breaking going down the road.

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
ok thanks. i'll give it a shot tomorrow. gotta go to Daytona supercross now. have a good weekend.
Expert:  Honda-Man replied 9 months ago.

Sounds fun, have a good time.

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
i replaced the spark plugs. no help.
Customer: replied 9 months ago.
opened the engine back up and the timing belt is very loose on the top side. and was obviously rubbing because there's a lot of material missing on the side and it's all built up inside.
Expert:  Honda-Man replied 9 months ago.

Sorry to hear that I was hoping it would be easier. Sounds like it skipped time. If it was rubbing one of the pulleys, water pump , etc might be loose. Guess it's time to tear it down all of the way and check all of the pulleys and tensioner.

Expert:  Honda-Man replied 9 months ago.

I would spin it over and see if the marks are off just to be sure.

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
do you have any more detailed instructions on the timing or just the pictures? i want to make sure i get this right so i don't end up opening it back up again.
Expert:  Honda-Man replied 9 months ago.

Let me look for better instructions.

Expert:  Honda-Man replied 9 months ago.

Click HERE for a folder with the instructions. You will need to fill in the obvious parts I just included the belt installation.

Thanks, Honda-Man

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
great thank you. last question. i bought a new belt and tensioner. do you think i should change anything else?
Expert:  Honda-Man replied 9 months ago.

If the water pump pulley bearing or any of the idler pulley bearings are loose they will need to be replaced. Other than that no if they all feel OK just the belt and tensioner will need to be done.

Thanks, Honda-Man