Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Pace, Florida
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A4 starting issue
I have a problem with the A4 starting after a period of sailing. Background on engine. New coil, new plugs, new carburetor,new fuel filter(racor), new electronic ignition. When at the dock it fires up in 2-3 revolutions, I keep it choked until it starts to get a little rough and then choke off and it smoothes out beautifully. When we hoist the sails and get out to sailing area I shut it off. On several occasions I have not been able to restart. On one inspection I found the racor empty so I installed a squeeze bulb between the tank and the racor. I thought when sailing and bouncing I may be losing prime with air getting back to to the fuel line on a heel. Last time it did it (last weekend) I could not start it even the next day, after priming the filter with the bulb.
After a long time of cranking finally got a little sputtering but would not go. After longer wait and more cranking finally it started and ran well. Another hypothesis: maybe it is flooded but this does not explain the empty fuel filter. I turned the fuel valve off at the tank and ran the engine for 2-3 minutes before shutting down. The squeeze bulb was flat from suction on the fuel line. After an hour I turned fuel back on and watched the bulb inflate. The engine started fine. I repeated this 2X with same result. The test will come when I do the same procedure and then sail for the afternoon, with fingers crossed. Sometimes the wind does not allow sailing to the slip!!
If turning the valve off works, is there a check valve of somekind I can put in the line? Oh, I also thought the tank vent might be stopped up. I dismantled the cabinets to get the tank, disconected the vent line and blew on it and it was clear. The boat is a Tartan 30. Tank on Stbd side amidship and racor and A4 on port side just left of keel. Could fuel siphon back to tank. I jumped the fuel pump to check if it was working and I got the tic tic tic tic of the pump so know it is ok and when it starts it runs fine.
I am at wits end. I need to get this solved......no one wants to go sail if we have to call Tow Boat US. Been there done that.
If anyone had had similar problem I'd love to know your solution.
Thanks, Scott from Pensacola, FL