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First crank or never

My 1999 Cougar runs great! When it starts, that is. When it decides to start it will do so on the first crank. When it doesn’t there is not a hint of spark. Not a chort, chug or stumble. I had the ignition module replaced but the problem didn’t go away. Once the car is warm it will re-start without a glitch. When it cools the engine just cranks and cranks.
It sat all winter in Northern Minnesota with 3 feet of snow covering it. I pulled out a battery charger in April, charged the battery… and it started with the touch of the key. Ran it to running temperature. Restarted it a few times within 2 hours. Next morning… nothing.

Besides the ignition module, what was done or checked? When it acts up, did you do a simple coil resistance check? Have you checked for any codes?

When it doesn’t start the first time, have you tried a ‘flood clear’. That is where you hold the accelerator pedal to the floor while cranking. If it catches, release the pedal and see if it idles okey.

ignition module and coil were replaced. First the one and then the other by a certified mechanic who has offered to tow it to a dealer. Says he doesn’t have time for it. Thought he fixed the problem both times only to have it misbehave after only a day or two each time.

As for flood clear? Never a wise thing to do on a fuel ejection (It’s a 99 not a 69:)) … but, against all better judgment I’ve done that too.

Flood clear is programmed into the fuel injection for WOT and engine in start cycle, so there is nothing wrong with doing this on a 99.

Btw, flooring a FI car while starting overrides the computer’s normal behavior so Researcher is absolutely correct in suggesting it. It is a perfectly legitimate way to clear a flood condition as it does not activate the injectors in that mode.

You’ve replaced the ignition module but have you checked for spark?

Now that it has sat for the winter I can’t recall the mechanic’s circumstance that promoted the first two change outs. My hope was that a common problem, be it computer or electrical component, would prompt a response… "Hey… I know what that is… here’s what I finally found it was…"
Thank you gentlemen.

My crystal ball is in my other pants.
It could be a thousand things and any single one suggestion would be a guess, based on what we know about your condition - answering the questions “what was done or checked? When it acts up, did you do a simple coil resistance check? Have you checked for any codes? Does it have spark?” those may help us help you.