Can't 'tow start' the car...

2009 Ford fiesta (manual transmission) wont start. It had been sitting in a garage for a few months unused while we were overseas. Came back and the battery was dead. We hitched it up to another car to try to tow start it (much the same effect as a push start or hill start), but it wouldn't turn over. Last night pulled the battery out and charged it all night. Put it in the car in the morning - all electrics seem to work, but when I turn the key to start the car - nothing. it's like the starter motor is not even connected. Could the starter motor be cooked? I've had a dead starter motor in a different car before, and was still able to push start/roll start the car every time. Any ideas? If it was just the started motor I would assume I could push start the thing, but didn't work.

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  1. 2 months ago
    Anonymous

    Ask Bob hes the resident boom boom mechanic.
    More than likely its a cracked plastic intake manifold.

  2. 2 months ago
    Anonymous

    Google whether your car has a battery monitoring system and the reset sequence. Then bring your battery to be tested for it's charge. Turning over an engine takes a lot more juice than the interior electrics.

    • 2 months ago
      Anonymous

      >a few months unused
      >pulled the battery out and charged it all night
      >when I turn the key to start the car - nothing
      Check your battery. Charging it overnight doesn't frick all if it's old, sulfated, and left dead for months. Take it to any auto-parts store and have them check it. In the US, this is free absolutely everywhere. Given what you described, I'll bet the voltage is too low for it to actually do anything but turn on some interior lights.

      >Google whether your car has a battery monitoring system and the reset sequence.
      Not a concern in a 2009 Fiesta.

      OP here, thanks for the replies so far.
      > Turning over an engine takes a lot more juice than the interior electrics.
      Battery was more than 75% charged
      > are you telling me that you pulled the car with a tow rope and the fricking tires skidded.
      No skidding tires. Car was in motion while being towed, obviously holding down the clutch, popped the clutch, there was a little bit of a jolt, but nothing, Tried to turn the key a few times at that point as well, but nothing. Wheels kept turning with the car seemingly in gear. Tried it multiple times in 1st, 2nd, and 3rd gear.
      We tried all this again today with the mostly charged battery, same result. Although I did see that transmission warning light show up (gear/cog with '!' inside). I thought this was an auto transmission warning light, but the car is manual. Never seen it in the car before. Maybe low on gearbox oil?
      >Try gently tapping on the starter with a hammer and screwdriver
      I can't get to it from the top with the hood open, and the car has metal bash plates bolted on the underside, so I can't get to from the underside without jacking up the car and removing that. But I was thinking of trying that, That will be my next move hopefully.

      >Battery was more than 75% charged
      Says who? Your charger? That shit means absolutely nothing, disregard it.

      If you let the battery sit drained for several months it probably is damaged. You can charge it but it won't give you the same cranking amps as a new one would.

      Best "advice" in this thread so far.

  3. 2 months ago
    Anonymous

    Bob will respond shortly.
    Hes having his oatmeal and juice which elicits a bowel movement. Or should i say half of one. The other half presents itself in his boxers when he dons his penny loafers

    • 2 months ago
      Anonymous

      With the car in neutral, tap +12v from the battery to the starter solenoid (not the main starter motor lug, that has it's own heavy wire going directly to the +12v battery terminal).

      That will immediately rule out if the starter is responding. Then look for a starter relay, check that it hasn't failed. You're not hearing the 'ka-chunk' of the solenoid firing, so it's either a dead starter solenoid or upstream from that, the relay.

      here's your (YOU)
      Go easy on bob. He's old. He's here to help. Anyone can troll, it's not a special technique or ability. Just like anyone can shit on the sidewalk, but certain people choose not to.

      • 2 months ago
        Anonymous

        > Go easy on bob. He's old. He's here to help. Anyone can troll, it's not a special technique or ability. Just like anyone can shit on the sidewalk, but certain people choose not to
        Sure thing bob

        • 2 months ago
          Anonymous

          When you're old and less moronic, you'll get it.

  4. 2 months ago
    Anonymous

    >but it wouldn't turn over.
    While we're waiting for Bob to change his shorts, are you telling me that you pulled the car with a tow rope and the fricking tires skidded.

  5. 2 months ago
    Anonymous

    I know what's wrong with it. It's a Ford. Ya know what they say Ford stands for, don't ya? Stands fer: "Fix It Again, Tony."

    • 2 months ago
      Anonymous

      Dale, you are thinking of a Fiat.

  6. 2 months ago
    Anonymous

    Try gently tapping on the starter with a hammer and screwdriver (depending on your level of access to it of course) while someone cranks it

  7. 2 months ago
    Anonymous

    OP here, thanks for the replies so far.
    > Turning over an engine takes a lot more juice than the interior electrics.
    Battery was more than 75% charged
    > are you telling me that you pulled the car with a tow rope and the fricking tires skidded.
    No skidding tires. Car was in motion while being towed, obviously holding down the clutch, popped the clutch, there was a little bit of a jolt, but nothing, Tried to turn the key a few times at that point as well, but nothing. Wheels kept turning with the car seemingly in gear. Tried it multiple times in 1st, 2nd, and 3rd gear.
    We tried all this again today with the mostly charged battery, same result. Although I did see that transmission warning light show up (gear/cog with '!' inside). I thought this was an auto transmission warning light, but the car is manual. Never seen it in the car before. Maybe low on gearbox oil?
    >Try gently tapping on the starter with a hammer and screwdriver
    I can't get to it from the top with the hood open, and the car has metal bash plates bolted on the underside, so I can't get to from the underside without jacking up the car and removing that. But I was thinking of trying that, That will be my next move hopefully.

    • 2 months ago
      Anonymous

      >transmission warning light show up (gear/cog with '!' inside)
      I used to have a fiesta (previous gen) and that light was a engine management light, (basically a less serious engine warning light), so don't assume it's a transmision light if you haven't checked the manual. Pretty sure manuals don't have gearbox oil level sensors so doubt it would be that. Is yours petrol or diesel?

  8. 2 months ago
    Anonymous

    Petrol

  9. 2 months ago
    Anonymous

    Tap on the starter
    Jesus 1972 called wants its chevy starter back

    • 2 months ago
      Anonymous

      He can't physically get to the damn thing.

      All this little sub-human sized trash cars. baka

      • 2 months ago
        Anonymous

        That was my point
        Its not 1972 anymore when you could
        My wording is moronic

  10. 2 months ago
    Anonymous

    Sounds to me like some anti theft shit is activated

  11. 2 months ago
    Anonymous

    Never bump start in first either. use the gearing to make your life easier, the engine turns over easier in higher gear.

    • 2 months ago
      Anonymous

      No, a lower gear helps the engine spin faster, so you'll be able to bump start it with the vehicle going slower. Reverse works even better since it's usually the highest gear ratio.

      • 2 months ago
        Anonymous

        That locks up the tires easiest.
        Use your 1:1 gear for best power transfer from rolling wheels to engine with least likely chance of spinning tires.

        You dont drop the clutch and leave it, you get it back in as soon as the engine coughs. Or do it in first, skid tires as the engine chugs and you come to a stop.

  12. 2 months ago
    Anonymous

    try towing the car as fast as reasonably possible and put it reverse

  13. 2 months ago
    Anonymous

    If a push start won't start it, you're missing some power somewhere. A switch or relay is dead. Look around the ignition sub circuit. If it's not powered the engine will not turn.

  14. 2 months ago
    Anonymous

    read the manual. it has something like if a brake light is out it won't start unless you over ride the safety feature. in an auto that's often putting it in neutral before trying to start it. modern manual doesn't exist in the burger world so lord knows. it could be something as simple as you're not pushing the brake or you don't have the clutch in. of course the switch(es) detecting such things could be bad too but it's unlikely.

    anything besides a safety feature and it should do SOMETHING when you try to start it.

    also you parked it? you or whoever parked it didn't pull a fuse or something simple to ensure it wouldn't get stolen? I'd just run down the fuses real quick and make sure everything is where it's expected to be.

    • 2 months ago
      Anonymous

      >blah blah muh moron burger
      If it can't bump start it has nothing to do with holding the brake or acknowledging some message on the dash. All cars with an ignition lock (a key) work on the principle that when the key is in the ON position (sometimes called II) the car will do its best to keep the engine running, short of starting it. The only thing other than a mechanical malfunction that would prevent the motor from turning is the immobilizer if so equipped. OP did you check that? The chip on your key might just not be programmed in. Do you see some pictogram of a car and a padlock on your dashboard? Ford calls it PATS. Lower left in picrel.

  15. 2 months ago
    Anonymous

    When bump starting anything, second gear is optimal

    • 2 months ago
      Anonymous

      How does that make any sense?

      • 2 months ago
        Anonymous

        Not him.
        When pushing, the mechanical advantage of the gearbox goes backwards. Meaning the higher the gear, the more mechanical advantage you have but the slower the motor will rotate. The lower the gear, the faster it spins but the harder it is to push. Second or third is generally best.
        Its OP's car so he should know how long or short each of those is and then select accordingly, but generally second is a good starting point if you're push starting a car you're not familiar with.

        • 2 months ago
          Anonymous

          Oh, we're talking about two different methods. If you get it rolling and then pop the clutch, you don't need a whole lot of space or speed to get it started.

          • 2 months ago
            Anonymous

            Yeah I bump start my truck all the time whenever I'm parked in the lightest of grades. I usually do it in 1st or reverse and I just don't give a frick.

      • 2 months ago
        Anonymous

        Why would it not? 5th you'd have to get the car going at 80 kph to reach an RPM it can sustain (low 1000s) and 1st is a bit rough on all the components. With tight constraints, 1st will do (or reverse) but if you can get some speed, second is smoother as the road still has a lot of advantage over the engine, but a grain of sand does not mean a huge jerk from 1500 to 1900 rpm

  16. 2 months ago
    Anonymous

    >check if it can rotate
    Do it via the crankshaft pulley. If for some reason it can't, then it obviously won't. Things like condensation, corrosion or freezing in very cold weather could do that.
    >check if you have fuel
    Since you already tried it a few times, some fuel should have been squirted into the cylinders. Remove a spark plug and check if they're stinky with petrol gas and moisturised with it. If there isn't and you have fuel, then could be your electronic injection or your computer cucking you.

  17. 2 months ago
    Anonymous

    From all info ITT, it could also be a relay.
    The pieces of shit corrode inside from time to time.
    If the relay in question was responsible for more than just the contactor of the starter, then it would explain why you can't push start it. Probably ignition or fuel supply is managed by the same relay.

  18. 2 months ago
    Anonymous

    New battery

  19. 2 months ago
    Anonymous

    ChatGPT says:
    >Given the circumstances, it's possible that the issue could be with the starter motor or other components related to starting the engine. However, it's also worth checking the ignition switch, fuses, and starter relay. If the battery is fully charged and the electrics are working, a mechanic's assessment may be necessary to diagnose the specific problem accurately.
    Pats?
    >"PATS" stands for Passive Anti-Theft System. If your Ford Fiesta has PATS and there's an issue with the system, it could prevent the car from starting. Ensure that the key you're using is the correct one programmed for your vehicle. If the problem persists, consulting a professional or checking the vehicle's manual for troubleshooting steps related to PATS may be necessary.

    • 2 months ago
      Anonymous

      >GPT recommends going to a mechanic
      Artificial "Intelligence" my arse.

  20. 2 months ago
    Anonymous

    If you let the battery sit drained for several months it probably is damaged. You can charge it but it won't give you the same cranking amps as a new one would.

  21. 2 months ago
    Anonymous

    If its one of those cars with an ECU or a fuel injector, you'll need a new battery
    Also, they don't cost much. they cost 30$

    • 2 months ago
      Anonymous

      OP tried to pull start it and it didn't work.
      A new battery won't help in that case. It would help if the only problem would be that it wouldn't crank.
      If the battery isn't completely flat, when you try a pull start the engine reaches close to idle revs and the alternator produces enough power to compensate whatever voltage the battery's missing.
      Some older cars can start from a completely flat battery like this, but I doubt that would work with a 21st century turd like OP's.

      https://i.imgur.com/kqHuyoC.png

      It's not a bad starter and if you replace your started when it goes bad, you 99/100 times got scammed, they are designed for you to replace the contacts when they wear out.
      >spark
      >air
      >fuel
      Which one are you missing?
      Spark and fuel need electric power.
      >You have connected a OBD scanner, the very affordable tool everyone should have in their car, before asking questions, right anon?
      >OBD scan takes less time than typing up a thread, so you did it right?

      Spark and fuel are likely culprits.
      The car sitting unstarted for months, it's very likely a relay contact corroded and there's no power to the fuel pump or the ignition coils.
      Dead starter or not the car should have started if pulled.

      • 2 months ago
        Anonymous

        >Dead starter or not the car should have started if pulled.
        No, push starting it won't create the power necessary for a vehicle like this. The battery is still flat and shit and dragging it down, getting 10 volts to the ECU while trying to push-start it won't do anything, it's doubtful the exciter is even kicking in and letting the alternator do its job. Step one is the battery, he just needs to have it load tested, but given it only hit "75%" after an overnight charge it's pretty clear that thing is likely ruined.

        Sadly, OP will never reply.

  22. 2 months ago
    Anonymous

    It's not a bad starter and if you replace your started when it goes bad, you 99/100 times got scammed, they are designed for you to replace the contacts when they wear out.
    >spark
    >air
    >fuel
    Which one are you missing?
    Spark and fuel need electric power.
    >You have connected a OBD scanner, the very affordable tool everyone should have in their car, before asking questions, right anon?
    >OBD scan takes less time than typing up a thread, so you did it right?

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