My friend has a Subaru Legacy L 1995,2.2,AWD and it has trouble starting. The motor turns over like normal,but won’t fire up unless she gives it some gas. I don’t know how much gas but when she did this,it started & idled like normal,but w/ a strong fuel odor,which also had a strong exhaust odor almost immediatly after starting. She says it acts a little sluggish until it warms up & this doesn’t happen every time. It was in the shop a month or so ago & the catilytic convertor was replaced. I don’t know what the problem is exactly, I’m not really good @ diagnosing problems, but can fix them once I know what’s wrong. some suggestions would help. -Karl
The first thing I would check is the coolant temperature sensor for the engine control computer.
Does it do this only when the engine is warm?
Is the check engine light on?
When she presses the gas pedal, during start, she’s giving it more air. This means that the fuel/air mixture is rich, and, by opening the throttle (pressing the gas pedal), she is leaning the air/fuel mixture enough to fire it (start).
There is probably oil and soot in the intake tract which is restricting air flow. The intake tract includes the iac (idle air control) valve, the throttle bore and throttle plate. Clean these with a liberal spraying, and soaking, with Carb/Throttle Body cleaner. Use an MAF cleaner to clean the MAF (Mass Air Flow) sensor.
The engine coolant temperature sensor (cts) could be causing the engine to run rich, also. Its voltage and resistance could be measured to see if it’s within limits. The instructions are in the repair manual. Click on this site for instructions on testing the sensor: http://www.autozone.com/shopping/repairGuide.htm?pageId=0900c15280066ee6