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Randall C
Randall C, ASE Master Tech
Category: Kia
Satisfied Customers: 11453
Experience:  ASE Master Tech, 32 yrs. Diagnostic specialist
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2002 kia sportage: starts hard and sometimes wont start..runs ok

Resolved Question:

2002 kia sportage starts hard and sometimes wont start. runs ok when it does start
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Kia
Expert:  Randall C replied 3 years ago.

Tracer :

Hello, my name isXXXXX will do my best to assist you with your question

Tracer :

Does this happen cold or hot. Can you send more details? what do you mean by starts hard. How do you get it started. Does it try to rt and when it does it misses? do you have to hold gas pedal to floor? things like this. I am trying to gather as much detailed info as you can send. thanks

Customer:

it was starting if i pumped the gas pedal. now it doesnt want to start even doing that. it sounds like it wants to start. more so when the engine is cold. I was going to change oxygen sensor but have not yet

Tracer :

dont change 02, it will not cause this. have you tried holding pedal to floor to see if it is flooding for some reason. Hold pedal all the way and crank

Customer:

yes i have held pedal to floor. it came close to starting doing that.

Tracer :

this is almost sounding like you have 1 leaking injector. As it sits, an injector or 2 are slowly dripping small amounts of raw gas, It sits int he cylinder and makes starting hard. once running, the engine clears out the cylinder and it will run just fine. the repair is to have the injectors flushed with a strong chemical that cleans them real well. Over time very small particles get caught in the small pintle tips of the injectors. the other thing may? be lack of fuel delivery. this case you want to get a can of carb cleaner, remove the air intake hose, gently spray some cleaner in throttle body and see if it starts then. if so,, fule may be leaking back to tank like a bad fule pressure regualtor etc. Only a fuel pressure test can confirm this

Customer:

I put a bottle of fuel injector cleaner in the tank a few days ago hoping that would help. I have not tried carb cleaner in the throttle body.

Tracer :

cleaner in the tank takes time if it works at all. In the shop we use a machine with very strong chemical, we disable fuel pump and run soley on the cleaner. the tank additive is more for maintenance rather than full immediate cleaning of injectors. One can also purchase a fuel injection cleaner kit at most part stores if you want to go that route. the carb cleaner is just to rule out another option as lack of fuel rather than too much fule to engine

Customer:

If it starts right up using the carb cleaner that be telling me lack of fuel? for a while it seemed like if you turned the key to the on position but not engaging the starter and let it

Customer:

sit for 5 or so seconds and then crank it it would start better

Tracer :

Yes,, as you turn key on the fuel pump is entergized till it build proper pressure. If fuel leaking back to tank, this process will/can take longer. yes.. sounds like lack of fuel, fuel leaking back to tank. Again, i dont like guessing so only confirmation to this is with fuel pressure guage hooked up. Without this info, I tend to lean more to leaking fuel pressure regulator allowing fuel to leak back to tank and empty the fuel injector rail

Customer:

Is this pressure regulator expensive and is it hard to change. I can do most mechanical work but not real familiar with kia's

Tracer :

Let me see if i can send info. back shortly

Customer:

ok. thanks

Tracer :

kia is not good with repair info but.. its at the end of the fuel rail. #3 in the pic. has a fuel line to it and held on by 2 bolts

Full Size Image

Customer:

Im thinking if it starts up using the carb cleaner I will than change the pressure regulator. Would you agree

Tracer :

at this point? without guage and readings and my very first thought? yes.. bad regulator

Customer:

ok. thanks for your help.

Tracer :

your welcome

Randall C, ASE Master Tech
Category: Kia
Satisfied Customers: 11453
Experience: ASE Master Tech, 32 yrs. Diagnostic specialist
Randall C and 2 other Kia Specialists are ready to help you

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Randall C
Randall C
Auto Technician / Consultant
452 Satisfied Customers
ASE Master Tech, 32 yrs. Diagnostic specialist