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New owner of a 1997 Geo Metro; but it's not running well
Topic Started: Oct 8 2010, 06:30 PM (1,678 Views)
PleaseDeleteThisAccount123454321
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Hi,

I am a 15-year-old (I am from Kansas and have a Farmer's Permit) whose parent's recently bought a 1997 Geo Metro. When it got home it didn't want to start and it ended up setting in our yard for about a year (I didn't have a DL at the time, so I wasn't too concerned about having a vehicle). Anyways, we recently started working on it again since I now have a DL and want a running vehicle. We replaced the fuel pump, and, after cranking the engine, It would start, then die. We did this several times until it finally didn't die. We let it idle for a while and went for a test drive. It seemed to be working fine, and it was getting dark, so we went to bed for the night. After school the next day we started on it again. It once again took a long time to get it to start and stay running. We drove it around some more (my parents got it insured while I was at school). I noticed that there was a constant clicking coming from the engine, and my dad thought it was a lifter getting stuck. The next day he had me drive around our property for a while to get used to starting and shifting manually (I had never driven manual before). After it started getting dark we stopped for the day again. The next day it just would not start, so my dad took off the valve cover and messed with it for a while (I am not too smart with cars so I have no idea what he was doing). He wanted me to look online to see if there was any way to remove a cover or anything to clean the fuel injectors, which he thinks is the problem. We have bought a new battery for it. It has 167,925 miles on it. We also changed the oil. We don't have any manual for it. So that's where I am at. If anyone could help me get a running car, I would be very happy!

Thanks,
George Walker
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Jittney
Anchorage 92 XFi

Welcome to the forum, pkmnct!
Outstanding that you are going to learn how to fix your own metro at 15.
The cars are fun to work on, and there are a lot of helpful people on this forum.
There is only one fuel injector for the car, and it's accessible under the air filter.
You have a good start on your own thread.
Can you find out what spark plugs you are using?
And, we'd love to see pictures of what you are doing.
Keep us posted. :)
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Stately
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Geo cheerleader

Welcome!

Throttle body injection has just one injector, but not carbureted. Many here will help you, and will be fun to work on.

Get pix and video if possible--will help to assist!
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Eric J
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Formerly CEJ93

I am not a mechanic...........but just curious if you guys put new gas in it after it sat for a year? If it has gas in it that has been in there a LONG time it could very well be bad couldn't it? Just a thought. I wish you luck in getting it running; they are great cars.
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jrdbarnhart
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SEAFOAM IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Bad Bent
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Welcome to your new forum, pkmnct! :coffee

My suggestion is to watch your Dad very carefully and if he does not mind ask questions. When he does something you can redo it or if one plug is changed you change the next.

Click on this link for Seafoam Maintenance. It is a great cleaner.

Old gas, a clogged fuel filter (although it is running), corrosion and rust on the ground wires, corrosion on the distributor contacts and the rotor inside it, and perhaps bad compression. A How to Compression Test is a good place to start. You need spark, fuel, air and compression for it to run. You might book mark the Frequently Asked Questions page.

When I was 15, my 16 year old friend and I rode bicycle from Los Angeles to San Francisco and back - but you get to drive. :thumb ...and a great car to learn on I might add.
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jellybean


the best way to learn how to work on cars is to do what you are doing get one that doesn't run. ask questions and don't say i can't. keep posting here you will soon have dependable transportation.
you can get a factory shop manual from ebay which will help you understand suggestions from this site. don't waste your time with chiltons or haynes they are too general
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mcmancuso
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you can try some starter fluid directly into the throttle body to see if its a fuel problem or not. If it starts right up with the fluid, its a fuel problem. If it's still hard to start then it could be a few things. right under the air filter is the throttle body, in the center of that with the wires inside the cloth sleeve running to it is the fuel injector. The lifters in this car are hydraulic, and do not need adjustment. If they're clicking its because there isn't enough oil in them, which may be due to sitting so long. If the clicking doesn't go away on its own after a couple hours of driving, the lifters may need to be disassembled and cleaned, its not hard, they just pull apart into several pieces. At the center is a spring and ball bearing that make up a check valve that controls the oil in the lifter, this is what needs to be throughly cleaned, if there is anything between the ball and its seat will let oil out of the lifter and cause it to click. Pick up a haynes manual, it has a lot of basic info on the car, feel free to ask questions here, and give as much info as you can. If you really want to know how to fix things in detail, a factory service manual, available from ebay for your model and year is the best way.
Edited by mcmancuso, Oct 8 2010, 09:40 PM.
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PleaseDeleteThisAccount123454321
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Quote:
 
I am not a mechanic...........but just curious if you guys put new gas in it after it sat for a year? If it has gas in it that has been in there a LONG time it could very well be bad couldn't it? Just a thought. I wish you luck in getting it running; they are great cars.

Yeah, we did before we replaced the fuel pump.

Quote:
 
Old gas, a clogged fuel filter (although it is running), corrosion and rust on the ground wires, corrosion on the distributor contacts and the rotor inside it, and perhaps bad compression. A How to Compression Test is a good place to start. You need spark, fuel, air and compression for it to run. You might book mark the Frequently Asked Questions page.

We did not know where the fuel filter was located, we thought it was a metal cylinder under the driver side of the car, and switched that out for a see-through one that was a lot smaller, and it would not start. So my dad thought it was restricting the flow of the gas. We put the metal cylinder back on. My dad also took off the fuel hose under the hood and had me turn the key to see if gas was coming out and it was. We also cleaned the ground wire when we replaced the battery.
Quote:
 
The lifters in this car are hydraulic, and do not need adjustment. If they're clicking its because there isn't enough oil in them, which may be due to sitting so long. If the clicking doesn't go away on its own after a couple hours of driving, the lifters may need to be disassembled and cleaned, its not hard, they just pull apart into several pieces. At the center is a spring and ball bearing that make up a check valve that controls the oil in the lifter, this is what needs to be throughly cleaned, if there is anything between the ball and its seat will let oil out of the lifter and cause it to click.

We just did an oil change, and, since we didn't have a manual for this car, my dad had me look online and I found somewhere that it needed 3.5 quarts. Does it need more? Also, we have probably driven it around for about 5 hours total, and it hasn't gone away (It may be a little better). When my dad gets up I will tell him about the lifters. Also how would you take them off?
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Jittney
Anchorage 92 XFi

You are correct about the 3.5 quarts of oil.
It should be 0W30 or 5W30 oil.
So, if you ran it for 5 hrs with 3.5 quarts in it, you're doing fine.
Sounds like you are getting a lot of experience on the mechanics of the car!

The ground wires on the intake manifold are notorious for corrosion.
You will see them underneath the air cleaner assembly....on the firewall side.
Just take them off, one by one, and scuff them up with sandpaper or a small brush, and clean it up with some cleaner and put them back on.

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PleaseDeleteThisAccount123454321
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Well I took some pics of the car.
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I hope to get some video of us trying to start it soon, but my dad went to an auction. It cranks, acts like its starting, cranks and so on. It doesn't start though. I can smell gas, so maybe its flooded?
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Bad Bent
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Facetious Educated Donkey

This pic shows the TB coolant lines that should be as hot as the radiator hoses and the black arrow points to the ground wire connection...

Posted Image

You found it...Fuel Filter Location

IMHO, You want the 2 volume green service manual; ebay.com/Geo+Metro+manual+service.
Starting at $31 but do not spend over $40.
.
.
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PleaseDeleteThisAccount123454321
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Quote:
 
IMHO, You want the 2 volume green service manual; ebay.com/Geo+Metro+manual+service.


This one look good?
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PleaseDeleteThisAccount123454321
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I took a video of it trying to start.
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mcmancuso
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Here's a how to on cleaning the lifters: http://teamswift.net/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=34314
you may have to become a member on that site(its a sister site to this one with more focus on the suzuki swift-which is the same car as the metro)
you have to take off the timing belt cover, timing belt, valve cover and camshaft. Then you can pull the lifters out.

Yes that's the correct set of manuals for your car, good find.
Edited by mcmancuso, Oct 9 2010, 01:11 PM.
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