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Ď98 T/A Stock LS1 Sporadic Cold Start Spin, No Fire Issue

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  1. #1
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    Ď98 T/A Stock LS1 Sporadic Cold Start Spin, No Fire Issue

    Firstly, this is my first post to the forum so... Hey! Secondly, I have no idea which forum this best fits, so if Iíve posted in the wrong one forgive me and please let me know itís proper place.

    Where to start? Husband went to leave for work one day but when he turned the key, the engine spun but wouldn't fire. Switched the ignition back off and tried again, same result -- no fire. After several attempts, the engine finally fired and ran as normal -- no stumbling, sputtering or hesitation. The car started and ran fine for a couple days but decided to catch an attitude again after 3, maybe 4 days with the same symptoms as several days prior. Since the first occurrence, this issue has happened more than a dozen times over the past several months with no apparent rhyme or reason and no consistency whatsoever other than being a cold start each and every time. Sometimes there would be a week between happenings other times it's done it every cold start 2 or 3 times in a row.

    Jump back about a month ago to when his key got stuck in the ignition in the run position and we were unable to turn the engine off by turning the key. He had to pull the fuel pump relay in order to shut the car off. We tore the steering column down to fix the ignition issue, had a locksmith fix the ignition switch and sewed everything back up. After the switch was taken care of, the cold start issue ceased to rear it's head for about 3 weeks, however multiple other problems took it's place. The dash lights had begun to flicker and come on when depressing the clutch or accelerator, the A/C would also stop blowing when this happened and at one point the head and fog lights went out though all the dash lights stayed on, but no more cold start problems.

    Fast forward to 2 days ago. I took the steering column back down to the switch to see if it was somehow related to the ignition. Low and behold, it seemed one of the wires from the switch had gotten pinched and the insulation had separated, exposing the bare copper which had also suffered some breakage. I took the switch out, soldered the wires for a better connection and put everything back together. Upon the very first start up attempt after repairing the wire, that pesky cold start gremlin made it's appearance. And while the other issues seem to have been resolved with no more occurrences, the cold start fail has presented twice.

    We've checked fuel pressure, which was as it should be. Fuel pump, filter and injectors all check out. Plugs and wires are all in good shape. MAF and IAT have been sprayed and cleaned, along with air filter. Also, no codes have been thrown. Any ideas on where else to look and what the culprit may be?

  2. #2
    Spaz is My Mentor SMWS6TA's Avatar
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    Does it randomly sputter when on the road, like if you hit a bump or take a turn to sharply?

  3. #3
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    Not at all. The car runs perfectly once it decides to run. Convincing it to actually run isn’t the only issue.

  4. #4
    Spaz is My Mentor SMWS6TA's Avatar
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    How long since last plug and wire change?

    Fuel filter last changed?


    Security light coming on?

  5. #5
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    Plugs and wires were done this January, about 12k mi ago.

    Fuel filter was done about a year ago.

    No security light.

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    Sounds an awful lot like our Suburban did when the fuel pump was on its way out.

  7. #7
    Spaz is My Mentor SMWS6TA's Avatar
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    ‘98 T/A Stock LS1 Sporadic Cold Start Spin, No Fire Issue

    that's what I'm thinking, that or the regulator
    http://www.ls1.com/forums/f7/my-6-liter-build-174257/

    http://www.ls1.com/forums/f8/my-8-8-rear-build-165553/

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    Definitely not normal for the engine to crank like the OP described. So let's break it down a bit:

    1. On the next couple of cold start attempts, pause just after the key energizes the ignition circuits (at the second click) to determine if you can hear the fuel pump engaging before you crank the engine.

    2. Hook up a fuel pressure test gauge and watch it as you energize the ignition (without starting the engine). Does it jump right to 58 psi? Turn the ignition off and watch the gauge. Does it hold pressure for a bit and slowly drop or does it rapidly drop back to zero?

    3. Even though the SES light is not lit hook up a scanner and check for saved or pending codes.

    4. Is the throttle body clean?

    5. Are there any loose or corroded engine grounds? You may need to reference a service manual to find them all. There is one particularly hard one to get at on the back of the driver side head.

    Let us know what your findings are and we'll go from there.

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    i had one where it was the crank sensor. it provides the rpm signal. if the computer doesn't see rpm, it won't start. only found it with a scanner as it had no codes. wires were burnt leading to the sensor. yours might be cracked and letting oil in.
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