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I have a 2000 Jag XK8. Has been sitting for several days and…

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I have a 2000...

I have a 2000 Jag XK8. Has been sitting for several days and now won't start. One day it worked fine, today won't start. Battery is fully charged. Starter engages the engine and turns engine over briskly. Almost catches but certainly not strongly. Seems to be the smell of gasoline out tail pipe.

Mechanic's Assistant: Does the engine spark at all? Is there a trouble code or is your "check engine light" on?

No trouble code or check engine light. Don't know if there is a spark or not - individual ignition packs for each cylinder.

Mechanic's Assistant: Are you fixing your XK8 yourself? What have you tried so far?

Trying to fix myself. I've got the battery charger on the battery. Checked oil, it is fine. Have taken the air induction off so throttle body is open to the air.

Mechanic's Assistant: Anything else you want the mechanic to know before I connect you?

Have been trying to get it started now for two days. Engine spins easily. Seems to be a smell of fuel at tailpipe.

Submitted: 2 months ago.Category: Jaguar
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Answered in 5 minutes by:
12/19/2017
Jaguar Mechanic: Ronnie, ASE Certified Technician replied 2 months ago
Ronnie
Ronnie, ASE Certified Technician
Category: Jaguar
Satisfied Customers: 37,226
Experience: 34 years as an Automotive tech
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Jaguar Mechanic: Ronnie, ASE Certified Technician replied 2 months ago

Have you checked to be sure you have good spark at the spark plugs?

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Customer reply replied 2 months ago
No. The engine uses individual coils at each cylinder. To check spark I'd have to remove one, and the plug, ground the plug and turn the engine over.
Customer reply replied 2 months ago
I haven't done that.
Jaguar Mechanic: Ronnie, ASE Certified Technician replied 2 months ago

Yes, I am aware you have coil on spark plugs but you can unbolt one of them and pull it up a little and then have a helper crank the engine over and if you have good spark you will see it. This sounds to me providing you have a good spark that the engine has fuel fouled the spark plugs and one thing you can try is to hold the accelerator pedal to the floor while cranking it over. Doing this will shut the injectors off and may allow the engine to start. If that dose not work then the next steps would be to remove all the spark plugs and dry them out .

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Customer reply replied 2 months ago
Ok. Well, I think I'll go pull the coils off on one side of the engine and pull the plugs to see what I find. Will get back to ya. Thanks.
Jaguar Mechanic: Ronnie, ASE Certified Technician replied 2 months ago

If you find one is wet then there all likely wet and removing them and drying them out should get it started providing you have good spark. Before you pull the spark plug try holding the pedal to the floor and see if it will clear the flooded condiation..

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Customer reply replied 2 months ago
Ok. took plugs out (all 4) on passenger side. They were not dry, but sure not soaked either. All the coils looked good. Cleaned plugs and reinstalled. Gap was .40. Tried again with same results - and now battery is quite low. Didn't have another person nearby to try holing coil and plug out where visible to see if there was a spark. Will try that later tonight when others are here and battery is fully charged.
Jaguar Mechanic: Ronnie, ASE Certified Technician replied 2 months ago

First of all the battery needs to be fully charged so the engine will crank at the normal rate to start properly. Let's get it charged up really well and see if you can check for spark from at least one of the coils.

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Customer reply replied 2 months ago
Right. Just thinking ahead, is there a fuse or something I can check for the electrical system that supplies the coils? Or a fuse for the fuel pump for that matter?
Jaguar Mechanic: Ronnie, ASE Certified Technician replied 2 months ago

The coils get their power from the ignition coil relay, the power feed to them should be the red/white wire at each coil.

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Customer reply replied 2 months ago
Hi. Me again. So, battery fully charged to 100% overnight. I pulled all four plugs on the passenger side. Reasonably clean, checked coils, seemed good. Reassembled. Gap on plugs was all .40. One plug broke and I replaced with a new one. This morning, while waiting for a friend, pulled the front two plugs on the driver's side. Same pretty much as passenger side. Second coil in from rad seemed to have some corrosion/dust on the connection spring, so cleaned that off. Reinstalled both. Friend arrived: pulled front coil and plug. Use a jumper cable to ground the threaded part of the plug and attached coil. Turned engine over and good bright, regular spark. Reinstalled plug and coil. Tried starting again, with throttle at about 1/4 depressed. Turned over and came as close as possible to starting, but didn't. At this point, I have the air cleaner box off and the connection air pipe to throttle body is also off. Mass air flow sensor I have left connected.
Customer reply replied 2 months ago
I think I can presume that the coils are ok and getting spark, even though I just tested 1. I can easily: 1. pull the remaining two plugs for a look see, and 2. try another cylinder's coil for spark. But I suspect I won't find anything amiss.
Jaguar Mechanic: Ronnie, ASE Certified Technician replied 2 months ago

When starting it you really need to have the MAF connected, if your sure you have spark (which is likely if you have spark out of one) then the next steps would be to verify you have injector pulse as well as proper fuel pressure and good compression. Those would be the next things to check.

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Customer reply replied 2 months ago
Compression I understand and can do. I'd guess for fuel, make a T and put a hand gauge on the line. What should the pressure be? So, how to test for the injector pulse?
Jaguar Mechanic: Ronnie, ASE Certified Technician replied 2 months ago

Yes for fuel pressure you would need to tee into the fuel supply line, for injector pulse take a standard 12 volt test light and place the test end on the power side of any one of the injectors and the ground end on the other side at the connector and crank the engine over. If you have the pulse the light should flash while cranking.

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Customer reply replied 2 months ago
compression of one cylinder was about 100 psi. Tested it twice.
Customer reply replied 2 months ago
Didn't test others.
Jaguar Mechanic: Ronnie, ASE Certified Technician replied 2 months ago

That compression is very low, as much of a pain testing compression is to do, I would check a few more cylinder. You should be seeing numbers like #130 PSI and up.

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Customer reply replied 2 months ago
I disconnected the electrics to the fuel rail. Each injector has two electrical connectors. With test light grounded, engine cranking, the light stayed on solid. Tested electrics for three of the cylinders - same, stayed on solid. Throttle was not pressed.
Jaguar Mechanic: Ronnie, ASE Certified Technician replied 2 months ago

Are you sure you're checking the injectors, they only have two wires on each injector.

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Customer reply replied 2 months ago
Ok. Too cold to do right now. Will test all the cylinders tomorrow morning.
Customer reply replied 2 months ago
Is what I saw ok with the injector power?
Customer reply replied 2 months ago
each injector had two wires.
Jaguar Mechanic: Ronnie, ASE Certified Technician replied 2 months ago

Yo need to leave the connector and fuel rail connected to check the injector pulse. You can not test them unplugged.

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Customer reply replied 2 months ago
Morning. :-)
Customer reply replied 2 months ago
pulled all the plugs and did compression test, letting it turn over several times per cylinder. All 100 psi but one which was 125.
Customer reply replied 2 months ago
Interestingly though, I tried starting it before removing the plugs and it did start, for a moment. Certainly wouldn't idle.
Customer reply replied 2 months ago
All 8 plugs have now been out and they are all ok - no oil.
Customer reply replied 2 months ago
Just using the dipstick as an indicator, doesn't appear to be any water in oil. Nothing is dripping either.
Jaguar Mechanic: Ronnie, ASE Certified Technician replied 2 months ago

Good morning. Your reading a pretty low if your gauge is accurate, try doing a wet compression test and see if the reading increase, to do a wet test you need to squirt a few squirts of oil in each cylinder. If the compression comes up then this means the rings are not sealing properly.

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Customer reply replied 2 months ago
Will do tonight - off Christmas shopping with my wife today. And I've been thinking the Jag costs me a lot of money....
Jaguar Mechanic: Ronnie, ASE Certified Technician replied 2 months ago

Okay, post back if needed stay safe.

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Customer reply replied 2 months ago
I read something yesterday about a type of ceramic (?) cylinder lining Jaguar used back in late 1990's and 2000's. Apparently it ultimately didn't work and they went back to metal sleeves. I doubt they all would have failed at once though.
Jaguar Mechanic: Ronnie, ASE Certified Technician replied 2 months ago

Its not likely that all cylinders would fail at once. Lets see if the compression comes up with the wet test.

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Customer reply replied 2 months ago
Hey Ronnie. So, done a few compression tests. Dry, with throttle to floor, all plugs out, one cylinder is low - 100psi, and the others are all in the 120 range. Did wet and that one cylinder came up to 140 and the rest to 175.
Customer reply replied 2 months ago
Put the plugs and coils back in and tried again and it does start now - won't idle, but I presume that is because of the oil in the cylinders. But it will start consistently.
Customer reply replied 2 months ago
I think (?) that problem is solved. Maybe something else you can comment on - stuff I've come across while doing this.....
Jaguar Mechanic: Ronnie, ASE Certified Technician replied 2 months ago

All your doing by adding oil is temporarily increasing the compression, now that is running is there any fault codes setting? Did you get the MAF and all hose reconnected so there are no leaks?

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Customer reply replied 2 months ago
Haven't reconnected everything yet. Will over the next couple days. I'm hoping the oil will somewhat (?) drain down the cylinder and let the engine run. Or am I dreaming?
Customer reply replied 2 months ago
Maybe something else you can explain for me. It is a 2000 XK8. Apparently Jag switched engines in August of 2000. How can I determine if I have a Nikasil lined engine?
Customer reply replied 2 months ago
I've tried to find the engine code and all I can find is the engine "family". ANd VIN doesn't help.
Jaguar Mechanic: Ronnie, ASE Certified Technician replied 2 months ago

If you rings are sealing as they should the oil will burn off once its running. If you have things disconnected that may explain the lack of idle. I have no other information of the engine as well. The only information I have shows this engine is the 4.0 with the Vin code C. Perhaps you can contact Jaguar and give them the 8th letter of your vin for any additional information.

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