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Discussion Starter #1
I have an ’05 300C, with 52K miles. Only performance modification is the addition of a K&N cold air induction system (last year).

For the past several months I’ve encountered an intermittent problem when starting, The starter engages, but after a couple seconds I know it is not going to start, so I stop trying. I wait a few seconds, try again, and it usually starts right up. It happens in all temps and in all weather conditions.

I’ve had it at the dealer’s on two separate occasions for routine maintenance and asked them to be on the lookout for this problem. They said it started right up every time they tried to start it, no hard starting problems, no delays.

I’ve made sure the battery connections in both the trunk and under the hood are tight, I’ve tried starting the car with the A/C and radio off and I’ve even swapped key fobs with my wife. No improvement.

Anybody have any ideas as to what might be causing this?
 

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When the car finally starts, does it idle smoothly? Any driveability problems?

Have you replaced your spark plugs? They're supposed to be replaced every 30K miles, but many people don't do it. No idea if old/weak plugs would cause the problem you're describing, but it's a good place to start.
 

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Probably not much help, but here is from the Service Manual.

*HARD START FUEL SYSTEM
Possible Causes
FUEL CONTAMINATION
RESTRICTED FUEL SUPPLY LINE
FUEL PUMP INLET STRAINER PLUGGED
FUEL PUMP MODULE
FAULTY FUEL PUMP MODULE
FUEL INJECTOR(S)

Also check for any trouble codes (DTC).
 

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I have had the problem on occasion but not enough to chase after. It happens every once in while. I do not know what is causing the problem.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for the feedback. Once the car starts, it runs just fine, very smooth. No drive problems. I changed plugs at 29K and plan to do so when I hit 58K.

The next time I take it in for service I'll mention the items Joey listed, and also ask them to check for error codes.

Thanks again guys!
 

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probably

as suggested by the service manual, this is a fuel issue.

Generally, this can occur when the seasonal variations in our fuel change. My car does this occasionally, but change the gas and it changes with it. Your car may not like gasahol blend.

Try moving the key to the on position for a second or two before you try and start it. If this fixes it check filter, pump, etc.
 

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I've always done the wait-on-last-click and start method, and my car does that every now and then too, lol. The funny thing is when it finally starts it goes to normal idle very quickly. However, I've had times where the opposite happened (I barely had the started cranked and the engine came to life!) lol.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Ah ha!!! Stevesrt8 and Ootlink bring up some interesting concepts. I always use mid-grade Hess gas (because I get 5% off the price per gallon by using their Hess Visa card). But it has up to 10% enthanol, so maybe I should put in a tank of some other brand once in a while.

A neighbor, a retired mechanic, just told me to turn on the car, but don't start it, count to 5, turn it off, then back on nad try to start it. I'll be trying that too.

Thanks for all the tips.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thanks for all the feedback. I took the car to the dealer, told them to leave it on the lot and send someone out every hour or so to try to start the car, in the hopes is just MIGHT do it's thing. It finally did, and they figured out the problem. The fuel pump is not maintaining pressure in the fuel line after the car is shut off. That is causing no fuel at the injectors for a few seconds before it will start.
 

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So did they have to replace the pump...? I have started having this problem as well. It is very sporadic but the dealer couldn't isolate the problem. What was the actual fix?
 

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Discussion Starter #12
They replaced the pump on the 15th, but the problem is still there. Car was back in on the 18th. The mechanic told me he called Chrysler and was on the phone with them for an hour. When I questioned whether or not replacing the fuel pump was necessary, he said that fuel pumps lose "a little" pressure when power is turn off, somewhere around 8 psi or less. Mine was dropping over 25 psi, so the pump needed replaced.

Why it is still doing this intermittant starting problem is not known. The mechanic ran all sorts of tests, verified all computer modules are doing what they are supposed to, he is baffled about this. He did say he had more data to give to the techs at Chrysler.

So until they get back to him with other suggestions, I'll just keep driving the car and putting up with this problem.
 

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I think it's a glitch in the ECU programming, reason I say this is because apparently other makes of car have this same exact problem.

That, and I don't think the car has *EVER* started on that one attempt for me, I always let go and crank again, where it almost always fires up instantly.

That's what leads me to think it's a glitch - if it was a hard start, the car would crank a few times and then slowly come to life, but does yours? If mine doesn't fire up on that first crank it won't fire up until I let go and try again XD
 

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Fuel filter?
 

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If it was spark plugs or fuel/filter problems, it would be doing that every time rather than intermittently. Something is not quite right along the signal relaying route - something in the fuel pump electrical route. :scared:
 

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I had this problem once with an '85 Chrysler LeBaron GTS. It was intermittent, so of course it never happened at the dealership. And the car would always start eventually, sometimes after a few seconds, sometimes a few minutes. It took a year and a half for the problem to finally be solved. Turned out to be the ignition coil - a $25 part. I spent thousands replacing all kinds of parts unnecessarily.
 

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I'm still not sure ;)

If it was, why would it ABSOLUTELY NOT want to start that one time, but fire up immediately the next?

Our Mystique had terrible hard start problems until I swapped the coolant temperature sensor and suddenly it was fine.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Thanks much for the additional ideas to pass on the dealer.

In response to OoTLink, if I keep the starter engaged it will eventually startafter 4 or 5 seconds. If I know if is just cranking away (I'm getting good at knowing when this is happening :)), I stop and try again. Usually it starts the 2nd time, but on occasion it will take 3 or 4 times to get it going.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Well, 2 more days at the dealer's. Can't recall exactly when, but I passed on every suggestion presented by you in this forum. Chrysler said they wanted a download of the computer data after which the dealer was told to do more tests. Fuel tested out ok. Every test was ok. The dealer AND Chrysler do not seem to have a clue as to what is causing this, let alone how to fix it.

I also found out a co-worker had this exact problem with a 2004 300M, he eventually got rid of that car because of this very problem. Second, the service manager at the dealer's said the tech they spoke to at Chrysler told him HIS 300 does the same thing and he can't figure it out either. Now that is really a scary picture.

The dealer did say they would stay in contact with Chrysler about this, but I may ask them to have the factory rep contact me the next time he is at their place so I can talk to him/her about it.

My concern is not that the car will eventually start after 4 or 5 seconds. My concern is whether or not oil is getting distributed throughout the engine during those 4 or 5 seconds. Any ideas on that?

And until this problem is fixed my wife refuses to drive this car (our only car), meaning I get to take her shopping for clothes (oh the joy :thumbsdow ). I would sure hate to get rid of this car, but unless we can find a fix we may just do that.
 

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when you say the car doesn't start.. is it cranking during this time or are you not getting anything..


if it is cranking and doesn't start:

how much gas do you have?
when you filled it did you top it off?
do you normally top off the tank?


if you are finding that this happens when you have a full tank, or more than 3/4 tank and you top off the tank then I know your problem..

next time it happens remove your gas cap..

these cars do not have a fuel fill overflow, they have an evap canister and pump. if you top off the tank, even once and overflow the canister, then you are vacuum locking the evap pump, which starves the fuel pump of fuel.

so until the evap canister is replaced, every time you fill the tank, and until you run it down to about 3/4 it will always do this and in hot weather it will be worse because of the fuel vapors in the tank..
 
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