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1998 beetle cranks wont start help

3817 Views 5 Replies 2 Participants Last post by  red99
Hi everyone
Im new to vws, hoping someone can help point me in the right direction. I found a 1998 beetle 2.0 102000 miles, that i might buy, if I can figure out whats wrong with it, will crank but wont start, I have noticed that the fuel pump is wired directly to key and does come on, and stays on all the time, so not sure if it builds pressure, they cut the light blue wire to the pump and wired it to the key, I guess it did run before battery died, it will start with starting fluid as long as I keep spraying it, and stay running. the rpm guage works when cranking motor, I can hear the gas moving at the fuel regulator.
codes are
most of them are short to ground, and from reading forums it points to fuel pump relay, I did not change the relay or regulator because its not mine, could the regulater be bad and will not build anough pressure? any input would be helpfull before i make a decision to buy a non running beetle
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Wiring the fuel pump to the ignition switch is a bad idea. The pump draws too much current for the switch contacts. That is why the relay is there. Plus, the ignition switches are somewhat weak in these cars to start with.

Most likely you don't have enough fuel pressure for whatever reason: bad pump or too much resistance in the electrical feed to the pump. You could have a bad ignition switch at this point as well.

I'd reset the codes and see which ones come back. They could be old at this point.
not sure where they wired the pump to , but it comes on with the key on, the guy wants 900 for car not running, well I will have to see if it has enough fuel pressure to start, 30 to 40 pounds. codes were reset after installing the new battery and after cranking motor o the same codes came back,
All the codes have to do with things that run off the fuel pump relay: the MAF, fuel injectors, secondary air injection and EVAP. The only thing missing that runs off the relay is the heated O2 sensor. I would say that whoever tried to wire the fuel pump to the ignition switch didn't realize that all these other things are powered through the fuel pump relay as well. I doubt the engine has run since the rewiring was attempted.

If the car is in good shape it may be worth a try at $900. You would need to put the wiring back to the way it should be and figure out the reason for the problem with the fuel pump relay. It could be the relay itself, the ignition switch or something in the wiring. Or, still maybe the fuel pump too.
wife has put her foot down and said no! I still wouldnt mind fixing it, I think your right, put the fuel pump wire back to its original place and see why it wasn't getting fuel in the first place, Relay and maybe regulator now , is my guess. I looked in the manual and it does not show or mention the relays under dash, just fuse panel on side of dash, during the problem with gas [no power] whom ever fixed it might not have known there was a relay and wired fuel pump direct.
What they probably didn't know is that all those other things are powered through the fuel pump relay and you can't just get rid of it by bypassing it. They may have done in the ignition switch as well with the extra current draw from the fuel pump.
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