'95 Camry - Loses Power - Now won't start


OK, Last week I wrote in about my Camry (140K miles) losing power when I try to accellerate. This was an intermittent problem. The consensus was - may be a dirty fuel filter - so I replaced it, and all seemed fine.

Well, this AM, I had trouble starting the car, it cranked over fine, but wouldn’t start. Finally it did, and I drove it for 30 minutes. Once, during that drive, I tried to accellerate up a hill, and it lost power, but was OK.

Then, I parked it for about a half hour, and when I went to start it again - nothing. Now it won’t start at all. Any ideas?




Check to see if it is getting spark. Buy one new spark plug. Carry the plug with you and the next time it does not start, get out and pull one plug wire off (pull on the socket part not the wire) put the new plug on that wire and hold the threads of the plug tight against the engine block while you have someone try to start the car. You should see a bright blue spark, and if you are not holding the plug with an insulated tool, you will also see stars! This can rule out a spark problem.

It could be a failing fuel pump, but you are not really saying the right things for that one. How has the maintenance been? How long had that fuel filter been in there? Air cleaner? Plugs ???


Well, we are all just speculating from afar, but I will throw this possibility into the mix. If the fuel filter was long overdue for replacement, that could have drastically weakened the fuel pump and it is possible that the fuel pump is now a candidate for replacement.

However, you do need to clarify “nothing. Now it won’t start at all”. Is the starter operating, but the engine doesn’t actually start and run under its own power, or do you get no action from the starter when you turn the key?


The engine cranks.
I’ve replaced the distributer at 110K (because it died on me), I’ve kept up with maintenance, timing belt was replaced at around 100K. Fuel filter did not look bad when I replaced it last week (I cut it apart).

When I feel the loss of power, it is a “bucking” type of motion, not a smooth slow-down, in case that helps.


At some point you are going to have to do some diagnostics. Check for spark as already suggested. If good, check for fuel pressure. If good, check for compression.


Try sparying some starter fluid into the intake and see if it fires up then. If that works I would suspect the fuel pump as the source of trouble.