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Discussion Starter #1
Hello,
I have a 57 Plate 1.4 VTi.
For reasons yet unknown it has decided it doesn't want to start, overnight. I haven't noticed any problems with it prior to the current problem. There aren't any warning lights on the bashboard.

When you turn the ignition key it intermittently tries to bite, but only for a very short time and it never catches. I can smell fuel at the exhaust, after a while.

I have tried a different battery, but the symptoms are still the same.

Reading the internet implies it could be the spark plugs or sensors. I'm a bit unsure as to try and tackle this further myself or take it to a garage. (I'm feeling a little out of my comfort zone with this one). At least I'd like an idea of possible causes.

If anyone has any ideas, apart from the aforementioned spark plugs, and how likely they are to be the problem it would be much appreciated?

Thanks, Jonnn
 

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5 Posts
Hello,
I have a 57 Plate 1.4 VTi.
For reasons yet unknown it has decided it doesn't want to start, overnight. I haven't noticed any problems with it prior to the current problem. There aren't any warning lights on the bashboard.

When you turn the ignition key it intermittently tries to bite, but only for a very short time and it never catches. I can smell fuel at the exhaust, after a while.

I have tried a different battery, but the symptoms are still the same.

Reading the internet implies it could be the spark plugs or sensors. I'm a bit unsure as to try and tackle this further myself or take it to a garage. (I'm feeling a little out of my comfort zone with this one). At least I'd like an idea of possible causes.

If anyone has any ideas, apart from the aforementioned spark plugs, and how likely they are to be the problem it would be much appreciated?

Thanks, Jonnn
Far from expert here, currently having unsolved problems myself, but have had similar problems before which was cured by changing both the spark plugs and coils on car. Have you got access to a diagnostic reader to see if any codes come up ( you can read pending codes if not light on dash)?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks for replying.
Looking on the internet, spark plugs and coils don't appear too bad a job to change. I might brace myself and have a go at that.

I think we can get hold of a diagnostic reader. If it has anything in it (or I actually manage to sort this out), then I'll come back.

Jonnn
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Well it's sorted (touch wood). In-case anyone ever comes across this here's what we found:

We changed the spark plugs. They were a real mess.
It tried a bit harder but still no joy, so off it went to the garage.

They found a crank / camshaft timing issue, which is why it wouldn't start. They also said they've seen it a couple of times before on the BMW Mini, as it has the same engine.

Anyway, since getting it back I've been looking at what can cause that and I found this:
P0016 – Crankshaft position/camshaft position, bank 1 sensor A -correlation – OBD2 Trouble Codes (appologies if I'm not allowed to just throw in a link like that)

At the end, it comments that variable valve timing (queue browsing of internet to check if this was us) can be effected by oil pressure. When we first got the thing it was very low on oil. Given that none of the other causes seem to apply, if what I was told at the garage was correct, this seems most likely.

Should have just took the thing for a good service when we got it.
Anyway, thanks to everyone for replying.
 
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