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Can you spray fuel into air intake?


I just wanted to make sure. I’m using starter fluid which I heard causes a bigger explosion and can damage piston rings and whatnot so I figured can I just spray some gasoline into the air intake?

Yes it can be done. But be careful.

Why be careful. I can put to much and the engine will submerge or something or?

Because the gas may not spray where you intended.

What do you mean? If I spray it into the intake hose after the MAF won’t it go into the engine?

I would not use gasoline, use starter spray, it evaporates more readily and it will start the engine if only for a moment. Gas will puddle. It evaporates much more slowly and the vapor trail, if ignited can follow it to the sprayer. Don’t use gasoline!

The horror stories about starter spray are generally unfounded unless you spray a bunch in. If used as intended, it won’t harm the engine if used sparingly.

Bigger question is: WHY do you think you need to do this on a fuel injected engine?? Are you testing if its getting fuel? Or spark? Because it won’t do either, it will make the engine run for a moment not telling you anything.

No…what I’m saying is that you just need to be careful when spraying. It’s a dangerous place to be spraying gas. I don’t care how careful you are…sh*t happens.

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Mustangman- I don’t understand your response. Are you saying a fuel injected engine will start and run briefly on ether even if it is not getting spark?

Well my car won’t start when it cold (15celcius) for some reason. If I use starter fluid it seems to go sometimes. If I don’t keep the engine coolant temp needle in the middle afterwards the car goes but then dies out.

And you sure it won’t damage? I used it yerterday and while it was getting put in the car was running I used the gas pedal and a loud noise was heard, which wasn’t before when I did the same thing. A screechhing noise.

Um . . .

If you have an engine which has no spark, for whatever reason, that starter fluid isn’t going to do you much good, IMO


db4690- yes and that is why I didn’t understand what Mustangman said. That is why I try using starting fluid in the first place on an engine that won’t start.

If it still won’t start, no spark, compression or timing. If it starts and dies, no fuel. If it has a carb and starts and runs, insufficient choke.


Starter fluid, or a mix of heptane and ether, will ignite with a very weak spark. (OK, so not NO spark) Weaker than used to fire gasoline. If the engine starts, it won’t run long without fuel and it may not continue running once the starter fluid burns up if it has fuel but a weak spark. Either way, if the engine dies, you don’t have an answer as to why.

Starter fluid doesn’t screech. It may pop and backfire but not screech.

So is there a check engine light on? What is the trouble code? Have you checked the fuel pressure?

If you have to keep using starter fluid to start the car below 15 C (59F) you have a long winter ahead and you’ll likely will cause more damage than the car already has if you keep this up.

Thank you for clarifying :slight_smile:

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Mistangman- You are thinking Zebras, I am thinking horses.

Maybe @oldtimer_11 … I might be looking for the stripes 'cause this thing won’t start below 59 degrees F…There’s more here than just starter fluid. :grin:

Is this the same car that has the crank shaft position sensor code? If it is, @TheMidnightNarwhal try to keep everything under one post because as you add more symptoms the solution can be narrowed down. How did things work out after you replaced the sensor?

Yeah used some gas in a spray bottle same thing happened, dies out. The is only one missing key, how can temp/humidity affect ths issue, that’s like, what I can’t seem to get.