Smart Car of America Forum banner

1 - 2 of 2 Posts

43 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Car would not start-turned over but no fire.

Last weekend my wife went to our folks to help plant some flowers for mother's day. She went up last Friday and was coming home Saturday. She went out to start her car Saturday morning and it would not start. I got a call around 8 AM letting me know she had a problem. I thought it might just be a bad battery so I loaded up my jumper cables and the battery charger and off I went. When I got there the car was cranking just fine but it would not fire. It was pouring down rain.

I did some initial checks for the fuse 16 and swapped it with the spare out of 13. Still no go. I disconnected the battery for 15 minutes hoping the ECU would reset and all would be well. No joy.

Called the insurance company to set up a tow home 70 miles. Started out at $300 and they would cover the first $100. 10 minutes later I get another call and the tow company wants an additional $450. I told them to forget it. I just wanted to get the car home so I could work on it. I have a single axle trailer that the car fits nicely on. So we drove home and got up the next day to retrieve the car. Got it loaded and tucked into the garage at home.

Tried the ODBII reader and got no codes what so ever. So there were no obvious problems. Since it was not firing the next thing I tried was replacing the crank spark sensor as that was the cheapest part. Ordered the Mitsubishi part off of Amazon as mentioned in some previous posts. Fit perfectly but still would not start. I now have a spare.

So my next plan was to replace the fuel pump. The car only has 26,000 miles on it but I had read where pumps had failed with much less miles. I read about the dealer cost and was not even going to go there. So-found one on Ebay that was brand new OEM with warranty- $280.00-free shipping. There were a couple of used ones but I figured if I was going to replace it might as well be new.

After I had ordered the pump from Ebay I started searching around and AutoZone actually carries the pump for $222.00. They may not have it in stock but they can get one for you. A lot cheaper than any dealer will charge you.

So, I followed another fellows write-up about removing the fuel pump. Disconnect the battery ground first. I have a four post lift so I was not laying on the ground working on it. I had a hard time removing the belly pan that covers the tank area. The four post center is not wide enough for the pan to drop down enough. I had to jack each side of the car up enough to get it loose. You have to tip it at a pretty good angle to get it removed.

Next time-hopefully there is not a next time-I will drive the car up on ramps to remove the belly pan to get the correct angle. Then put it on the lift to finish the job up. There are two screws holding the pan on each side.

Once the belly pan is out of the way you need to remove the metal bulkhead at the back of the tank. It is fastened with star head bolts. Probably one of the few tools I did not have. Ran into town and bought a set from Oreily's. Actually that is what is holding the gas tank itself in as well.

Loosen the clamp at the fuel tank for the fill hose.I then stuck a 1/4" fuel hose in the tank to siphon the rest of the gas out. Next, I began removing the star bolts holding the tank in place. Three in front and two in back. The back left was the last to be removed and the front of the tank rests on a small lip. Since the tank was pretty much empty it was not heavy. I got it lowered enough so I could disconnect the electrical and fuel lines. I am old school and this was a first for me and dealing with the clip on fuel lines. You have to press in on the green detente and the fuel line should pop off.

Next up is the twist on ring that holds the fuel pump in the tank. I could not get it to loosen by hand so I used a large C clamp to grip it gently and finally got it off. There is a rubber o-ring that goes between the twist on cap and the fuel pump. The pump is spring loaded. There is one more internal fuel line that is a tee connected to the bottom side of the pump. This one has two detentes you need to push on to get it loose. It will fall into the tank but you can fish it out before you put the new pump in.

Now you should be able to wiggle the old pump out of the tank. I tied a string onto the tee that connects to the bottom of the pump.

Now you are ready to install the new pump. Wiggle it back into place pulling the string to keep the tee connection to where you can reconnect it. Connect the tee connection and push the pump back into place. Keep downward pressure on the fuel pump, put the o-ring back in place and begin screwing the retainer cap back in place. I had a really hard time getting it to start. I kept getting it cross threaded. There are arrows on the tank and the cap that are suppose to line up but I could not make that happen. I know the cap and o-ring are secure so I called it good.

Hook up the electrical and the fuel lines. Lift the tank back into place and secure loosely with bolts. Hook the filler hose back up. Put some gas back in the tank.

I then tried starting the car before buttoning everything back up. Car started right up and purrs like a kitten.

I secured the tank, put bulkhead back on and buttoned up the belly pan.

All is good once again. I did check with the local dealer and they sell the pump for $300.00 which all things considered is not too bad. I am sure they would charge dearly to put the new pump in.

Any ways-that is my novel on a broken down Smart due to a non-start issue. Not a difficult job but I did have a bit of a learning curve.


495 Posts
yes its a curve and hopefully a curve others may learn from your persistence.. random incidences like this are difficult to diagnose, and usually expensive in labor (done by a dealer), throwing parts at the problem (cheapest first!) most times works, then there are the times parts dont rectify the problem. BUT!
By thinking it through you fixed it... WAY TO GO!

and thanks for sharing... we all can learn something..
1 - 2 of 2 Posts