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Nissan Repair/Car does not start sometimes.


QUESTION: Occasionally my car does not start, i crank it up the lights would turn on but the car wouldn't start. It would start after 1 or 2 tries and runs like nothing happened, it doesn't happen again for few days and again happen anytime.
The last time it happened, i smelled a rubber burn smell and also saw a little smoke coming out of hood. After that i opened the hood and tried to start the car, it started and i could see nothing.
Please tell me what is happening and what should i do.

It is Nissan maxima 2003

ANSWER: Hi Raees

We will need to check if the condition is fuel, or electrical related.

First of all, can you tell me if the problem occurs when the engine is warm, cold, or does not matter? If it happens when the engine is warm, if you wait a few minutes, does it start again?

Secondly, is the check engine light on?

LMK, and then we can go to the next step of diagnosis.

Hope this helps -

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

QUESTION: No it does not matter if the engine is warm or cold. Its random. And no the check engine light is not on either.

Hi Raess -

OK. First pull out a spark plug wire and insert a screwdriver into the boot until it wedges against the terminal inside. Hold the shaft of the screwdriver about 1/4" away from any metal part of the engine. Have someone crank the car as if to start it.

Is there a spark jumping between the metal surfaces?

Do this only when the no start condition exists.


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Calvin Iwashita


All general car repairs for all models of vehicles, except technicals (overhauls) on A/C systems and transmissions.


16 years as a car mechanic from 1974 to 1990, and still repair cars on the side.


High School and college graduate

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