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Old 04-28-2002, 06:57 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Apr 2001
Posts: 10
Unhappy Wet engine now car wont start

I washed my engine the other day.Afterwards about five minutes later while stopped at a traffic light, the engine died and refused to start. I'm not getting any spark to the plugs or distributor. I've checked the ignition coil and its with specs for resistance. With no firing coming from the coil. could it be the coil or something else? I haven't experience any unusal starting problems, besides having to crank twice to get started in the mornings. That's it. I've reseached this site and have checked the following:
1. Coil
2. Ignition Wire
3. Green wire to crank sensor

Any Advice or help would be greatly appreciated.


1986 White 300E Jacksonville, Fl
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Old 04-28-2002, 07:27 PM
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: Cape Cod Massachusetts
Posts: 1,427
Lightbulb Water Displacement!!!!!!

With any engine/ignition wetness issues the quickest and easiest way to eliminate the H2O condition is with WD40. Water displacement formula 40 will do just that displace the water that has infiltrate connections and other openings in wiring and componentry. On boats we never are out of WD40!

You can liberally spray the various components while trying to start the car in steps or you can just spray everything and just try to get things running and warm to dry things out. The piece by piece method could help diagnose the actual cause more specifically and is possibly worth the effort in the long run. or you could get it running and then wash the engine again to recreate the fault condition to diagnose at a later more convenient time, or wait until the monsoons season when if there is a possibility the similar wet engine condition will occur. Good luck!

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Old 04-28-2002, 08:43 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Apr 2001
Posts: 10
Thanks, I'll try the 10-w-40 and I'll check under the ignition control module for water. It has been three days now. I thought by now that the water would have evaporated. Wishful thinking...
Thanks for the much needed advice,

1986 300e Jax,FL
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Old 04-29-2002, 12:18 AM
Registered User
Join Date: Apr 2001
Posts: 10
10-w-40, You can tell how frustrated and tired I am. Having a vehicle that just quit, really spoils ones day. When I washed the engine, I used a garden hose. I still trying to figure out why the engine doesn't have fire. Its been three days.

300e Jax, FL
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Old 04-29-2002, 01:30 AM
MikeTangas's Avatar
Senior Member
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: So. Cal
Posts: 4,430
Besides the locations all ready discussed, check for water accumulation around the spark plugs also.

It might just take a few days to dry everything out.
Mike Tangas
'73 280SEL 4.5 (9/72)- RIP
Only 8,173 units built from 5/71 thru 11/72

'02 CLK320 Cabriolet - wifey's mid-life crisis

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Old 04-29-2002, 01:32 AM
Ashman's Avatar
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Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: Sherman Oaks, CA
Posts: 4,748
Have you checked for water under the distributor cap?

My friend had an old jeep cj7. He was driving in the rain and hit a huge mud puddle and pulled into my driveway sputtering then it died.

First thing I did was pop the cap and dry it and everything else like the rotor and all.

Put it back on, and it fired right up as normal.

'92 300CE - Sold
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