Cranks and wants to start but dies out
My 2006 dodge durango cranks and wants to start after I sprayed the air filter with starter fluid. What could be the problem?
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Spraying starter fluid and getting it to fire for a few seconds is usually an indication that your vehicle is able to get air and spark but is lacking fuel or the correct fuel pressure. Before we get started, make sure the fuel cap is on and tight. This typically causes a check engine light and wont keep it from running but it is a possibility that could be a quick and easy fix.
Warning: Doing any kind of maintenance or work on a fuel system is extremely dangerous and best handled by a professional. In this answer, I am providing suggestions for troubleshooting and tracking down the issue at hand. Keep a fire extinguisher handy when doing anything with fuel.
I would start troubleshooting this by focusing on the fuel delivery system. First, examine all around the vehicle and under the hood for fuel leaks. This could be extremely dangerous or deadly if you do not address the leak FIRST. Next, you should be able to hear the fuel pump priming/pumping by having your ear next to the filler with the gas cap removed, and a friend turning the key to the On position. You should be able to hear it for the first 10-12 seconds of the key in the On position.
If you do not hear the pump turning on, then you would first look at the fuel pump relay which should be located in the fuse box under the hood. Most times, this relay will be the same as others and can be swapped which will give a clear indication as to whether or not the relay has failed. If swapping the relay with another of the same or replacing with new does not fix the issue and the pump still does not turn on, then you most likely have a bad fuel pump or fuel pressure regulator. Replacing the fuel pump is recommended. The fuel pump, fuel pressure regulator, screen/sock, and fuel level sensor are all in one assembly.
If you hear the pump turning on and still it will not start or run, then you may want to have a fuel pressure test done by a professional, or if you are comfortable doing this yourself, connect your fuel pressure gauge to the test port or Schrader valve on the fuel rail and perform a fuel pressure test. Be certain to carefully clean up any and all fuel spills and always let the engine bay air out if fuel is spilled and cleaned. If the pressure falls within about 60 psi plus or minus 2, and fairly steady, then your fuel pump should be good and the problem is likely elsewhere and may be something as simple as replacement of the purge valve. If it is not up to pressure or is very erratic, then the pressure regulator inside the fuel pump has likely failed OR the fuel injectors could be clogged, sticking, or have failed(the injectors are typically not the case as an 8 cylinder engine can typically still run, albeit rough, with half of its cylinders not firing and the chance of all of them being in such poor condition is not likely unless bad or dirty gas was put in the tank). Most times, no fuel pressure, poor fuel pressure or very erratic fuel pressure leads to replacement of the fuel pump assembly in this scenario as it contains the fuel pressure regulator as well. Either way you look it at, most times this will require a professional to further troubleshoot and correct the problem.
Lastly, if you’ve gone through the troubleshooting steps and still you do not hear the fuel pump turning on and no fuel pressure, then you likely need to trace the wiring to your fuel delivery system and possibly the ignition system examining thoroughly for pinches, breaks, cuts, corrosion, etc. Again, this is best done by a professional.
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Need more details, before using starter fluid what was the concern? How long did it sit for?
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