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Chrysler Repair/'94 New Yorker, 3.5L: no start, code 54


QUESTION: we know car needs water pump.  getting ready to put it in..drove to pick one up and stalled pulling into driveway and now it wont start.  car turns over and seems to be getting gas.  any ideas?

ANSWER: Hi Dana,
Try the ignition key to get the fault codes from the engine controller: "on-off-on-off-on and leave on" doing that in 5 seconds or less elapsed time. Then watch the check engine light, which remains 'on', to see it begin to flash, pause, flash. etc. Count the number of flashes before each pause, then repeat the process to be sure of an accurate set of flash counts.
Let me know the counts in order of appearance and we'll go from there.
Please read the PS below.

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: the code seems to be 354

ANSWER: Hi Dana,
I suspect the '3' was actually a 1 and 2 and that just means that the battery was disconnected some time in last 50-100 engine starts. Now if you only got a 5 and 4 then check that again as the last set of counts should always be a 5 and 5 which means 'end of code readout'.
If you actually had a 54, and then a 55 then the 54 means the signal from the camshaft position sensor is missing and suggests a new sensor is needed.
So did you get 1,2,5,4,5,5 or did you get 1,2,5,5? If the latter, then there is one part which when it fails will cause a no start but not set a code...that is the exhaust gas recirculation valve begin stuck open slightly ajar. That can be corrected so tell me if that is the case or not, and tell me which engine (L) you have.
Also, when you turn the key to the 'run' position do you hear the fuel pump run for about a second and then stop or not at all.
Please rate/nominate my answer/me.

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: the engine is a 3.5 .  am certain is either 1254 5 5  or 354 5 5.

Hi Dana,
There has to be an even number of counts so the 3 has to be 12.
The cam sensor is mounted on the front timing case cover just to the left (engine point of view) of the thermostat housing. It has 3 wires (orange, black/light blue, tan/yellow). Remove the bolt that holds it, replace the sensor and push it in until the tip touches the surface of the cam sprocket hidden below. The new sensor should have a paper spacer which is left on the tip so that when the sprocket rotates the paper wears away and leaves the tip of the sensor very close to but not in contact with the sprocket.
Of course another possibility is that the timing belt broke which will also cut off the cam sensor signaling. You will find out about that shortly when you replace the water pump.
If the 54 code is  indeed correct then either replacement should solve the no start.
Please do another rating, of this answer, and also if you would give a 'yes' where you see the question about a nomination of me to be 'volunteer of the month' I would be most appreciative.

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Roland Finston


Get a Free Fast answer to your repair question about a Chrysler/Dodge/Plymouth car, minivan, SUV, or truck. Problems with electronically controlled engines and transmissions as well as body wiring problems are my specialty. This free troubleshoot advice forum helps you diagnose faults, minimize repair costs or do-it-yourself.

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