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Q: Only starts if I use starting fluid

asked by on

I replaced the starter but now the car will only start if i use starting fluid and i don't know the location of the fuel pump relay to check it.

My car has 184645 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

A: Hello. To start, lets locate your fuel pump...

Hello. To start, lets locate your fuel pump relay. It will be in the main fuse box, in the engine compartment. It will be black box with a lid which houses most of the fuses. The inside of the lid will have a diagram that will show you which fuse and relay goes to which component. If the diagram is gone, you will want to look to your owner's manual, or find a diagram online. What you've described about the starter fluid tells you that the fuel system isn't working. With a starting issue like this, the fuel pump relay is a good place to start, and you can typically switch it out with another similarly rated relay to test it. If not the relay, you will want to listen very carefully for the fuel pump to prime. To test this, turn the key to the "On" position, and listen for a faint "whirling" of the pump priming. If you do not hear anything you will likely need to replace the fuel module.

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