Car intermittently starts, mechanic cannot get it to fail.... on 1992 Toyota Celica

the distributor, rotor were replaced. IT fails when my daughter tries to drive it...they checked the rotor and cap, they cant get it to fail to put on computer....what else can it be? If we get it started its a GREAT CAR....

by in Ocala, FL on March 03, 2009
5 answers 1 comment
ANSWER by on March 03, 2009
Sometimes an intermittent starting problem is the ignition switch beginning to fail, Here's a online guide http://bit.ly/ro2bn and the part is available from autozone $55 to $77
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ANSWER by on March 03, 2009
hemi is right, ignition switches can cause odd electrical and stalling problems. Doing the "jiggle test" on the harness from the switch may highlight problems with the switch. Did you only replace only the distributor cap and rotor? The ignition coil inside the distributor can fail. It can actually begin to show itself like this. As the distributor warms it can cause an open circuit killing the spark and stalling the engine. The radio noise suppressor inside the distributor may also cause problems. If either case is the problem, the entire distributor needs to be replaced. Some technicians will use a heat gun and meter/scope to test the circuits as it heats up. Technicians often recommend sticking with OE Toyota parts for this sort of repair and also for maintenance items like cap/rotor/plugs/wires. I also use Toyota parts in my truck when I can afford it. hope this helps!
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COMMENT by on March 03, 2009
Almost forgot, this article may help is chasing down the problem. Recreating the problem and knowing how to communicate this will help your shop a great deal http://repairpal.com/blog/Addressing_Intermittent_problems
ANSWER by on March 03, 2009
You say the car intermittently doesn't start and your mechanic can not replicate the failure. Does the car crank over but just fail to catch? If it doesn't start or crank it could be ignition switch, starter or electrically related. If it cranks but doesn't start it could be fuel or ignition related. I have seen the insulation of the coil break down causing the ignition coil to fail. If the car has higher mileage the fuel pump may intermittently fail.
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ANSWER by on March 11, 2010
I had a 1991 toyota celica GT 2.2L 5sfe with the same problem and the mechanic could not replicate it when it was at the garage. it ended up being 2 relays i dont know what for but thats what i heard from the person i sold it to while it was broken.
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ANSWER by on May 24, 2010
Haha, tell her to push the clutch in
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