Q: 1985 Buick Riviera doesn't start

asked by on April 13, 2016

I have a 1985 Buick Riviera and it doesn't start. It has a new fuel pump and carburetor.

Car is not starting Inspection $79.99 - $89.99 Get a Quote

Watch my video, "fixing the car that cranks and doesn’t start up," and it will give you all the steps to go through. But basically, what you want to do is see if you have fuel going into the engine and spark going into the spark plugs. You pull out the spark plug, get a spark plug tester, crank it open and see if you have spark.

Maybe you’ve lost spark. It could be a bad ignition control module or a bad distributor. You’ve got to figure out what isn’t working. If you would have a professional take a look at your car, a certified technician from YourMechanic can come to your home or office to diagnose your starting issue and make the needed repairs for you.

The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Fair and transparent pricing

What others are asking

Delay in shifting, rambling noise when accelerating

Various items can cause similar symptoms to the ones you have described. The most common would be a bad fuel filter, transmission fault, torque converter issue, shift solenoid problem, low fuel pressure, or a failed fuel injector. All of these...

My Saturn VUE 2008 will not start after drive it and will let sit for awhile and it will start. It is a frequent problem.

If computer testing does not show a problem then test fuel pressure to see if the fuel pump is pumping and needs replaced.

Car won't start. It only makes a clicking noise.

Hi and thank you for contacting YourMechanic. If you are getting a clicking sound when trying to start your vehicle that is a very good indication that your battery is dead. Perform a battery voltage test and make sure there...

Trying to pass emissions test. Failed once. Code P0449

Hello, thank you for writing in. Code P0449 will set when the system sees that the position of the vent valve, and the voltage for its position, do not match. There could be a wiring problem, a faulty hose, or...

When nearing low fuel, car will lose acceleration power, wheel will lock as well. Battery & Shift icon come on, has a few CEL's on

Hello, thank you for writing in. There is one major issue that is likely causing everything else you are experiencing. This is your fuel system. You need to start by checking and/or replacing your fuel pump. When it gets low,...

Car starts and then turns off

I would recommend starting with having your vehicle checked for trouble codes with an OBD2 scanner. Once the codes have been pulled by a knowledgable technician, a strategic diagnosis plan can be made. The Check Engine Light code will aid...

Hesitation when accelerating from stop.

Hi, there is a list of possible problems that could cause the hesitation from a stop on this engine. The intake system is known to have vacuum leaks and also coolant leaking into the intake. The mass air flow sensor...

Getting fuel, getting spark, and won't start.

Check the ignition timing on the distributor and see if the timing is off. If the timing is good, then the accelerator pump in the carburetor or the fuel injectors are not working properly (if your vehicle has TBI injection)....

Is there a fuel pump relay reset switch? Still got no power after changing the pump and relay. There is no engine light.

Hi there. There is no fuel pump relay reset switch, just a fuse. If the fuel pump is not working, first check the fuel pump fuse to see if its blown. If the fuse is good, then check the power...

Related articles

How Long Does a Carburetor Last?
The The carburetor combines fuel and air in the engine by using an intake vacuum supply. The air is pulled down through to the carburetor by the intake vacuum while fuel is siphoned from the carburetor’s fuel bowl. From here,...
Symptoms of a Bad or Failing Fuel Pump Relay
If the engine is stalling or not starting, or the fuel pump is not making any noise when the key is on, you may need to replace the fuel pump relay.
Buick Certified Pre-Owned (CPO) Car Program
If If you’re in the market for a used Buick vehicle, you may want to check out cars under their certified pre-owned program. Many manufacturers have a certified pre-owned (CPO) program, and each one is set up differently. Read on...