I'm not saying you are wrong Darragh, just I would put this further down my list of checks. I have never replaced a cat on an astra and seen it very few times in work (I work for an opel dealer by the way).
First thing I would check with a non start, would be immobiliser. If you have an immobiliser problem, the engine management light will flash on the dash. Easiest thing to check and if this is the case the ECU will not allow the engine to start. When this happens you would also lose fuel pressure as the ECU wont turn on the fuel pump relay. Does the engine run for a few minutes before cutting out, or almost straight away within a few seconds? If its a few minutes you can rule out the immobiliser problem as once the ECU gets an immobiliser signal it will stay running. If its only a few seconds, this is because some fuel will be left in the fuel rail and allow the car to start but cut out because the fuel pump isnt running.
Once you have ruled the immobiliser problem out by checking the engine management light, next thing to check would be trouble codes if you can get access to a code reader, will make things easier but I understand not everyone knows someone with one. If you have a problem with your ECU like I explained in my first post you should have the trouble code P0230 - Fuel Pump Relay Contact Problem. Most people suspect the relay as the fault but its not always the case. If you can get the codes read, post them here.
After checking for trouble codes, or if I couldnt check them, I would next check for fuel/spark. Easiest way to check for fuel pressure is not by checking at the pump itself. At the fuel rail there will be a black plastic cover the screws off, under this is a valve which you can attach a fuel pressure gauge to check. As most people wouldnt have one, you can check this by simply pushing in the centre of the valve carefully (have a rag around it to stop fuel spraying everywhere, watch your eyes) and checking if fuel sprays out, if it does, you dont have a fuel problem. If it doesnt next thing to check is for live at the fuel pump. Check with a multimeter/test lamp on the blue/red wire. You will only get a live for a second with the ignition on to prime the pump so you will have to have someone crank the engine while you check this. If you have a live here and still no fuel pressure I would check the pump you fitted. If you are not getting a live or sometimes losing it, see the link I posted.
If you have fuel pressure at the rail, next step is to check for a spark. While the coil packs do give trouble on the 1.4 astras, it usually only gives a misfire and brings on the management light on your engine (Z14XE, it wont on the earlier X14XE), but I have seen a few that caused non start issues. When it does start, you would notice that the engine doesnt run correctly if it was faulty. To check this you need to remove the coil pack and spark plugs and crank the engine with the plugs inserted into the coil pack and the body on the plugs touching the rocker cover for an earth. (Only hold the main part of the coil pack as you dont want to get a shock off it, and also watch your eyes as fuel could come out of the cylinders when you crank it.
After checking these steps (or as much as you can) post back and we can narrow it down for you.
BTW I'm assuming its a 1.4 as this is the most common engine, but let us know as its also available in other sizes which each have their own problems, such as if it was a 1.2 the first thing I would be checking would be the crank sensor as they give touble.
Its being towed to a garage today.
They will be checking the fuel pump (both of them). My mechanic had an amp meter and was getting little to no power. Althought he did hit 13 once on the connectors that connect to the fuel pump.
He thinks now that it is the ignition thats gone.
Anyway the car will be connected to the computer later on today. I'm a n00b when it comes to cars, but its all more interesting to me now.
I should have just checked it into a garage straight away tbh, but the opel dealer in Galway Flemmings have such a bad name from the people that I know so I wanted someone else to look at it.
Darragh29, we tried the pump while the ignition is in "accessories" but it wasn't pumping... but at 1 point it did, then failed every other time after that. We found the valve, but forgot to go back to it.
Didn't check the coil pack tbh... if its the most routine problem, I prob should have checked it.
Its an interesting problem to me, so I'll report back later to day with the cause. Thanks Lucifer, Darragh29 and Blindman for your help. I will never underestimate the power of Boards.ie especially the motor section, I never imagined I'd get this much help. I'd bet in the end I'd have it sorted on my own with ye.
Engine doesn't run for a couple of seconds at all
Just an update to this:
Got the car back yesterday. The garage said that the fuel pump is working now (the one from Traynors) he said there may have been an issue with a bent pin in it that was causing it to not work. So perhaps both pumps were fine...
Anyway even if we did spot the bent pin it still wouldn't have worked because what happened was that my key (which is the one we were using during testing) was disabling the imobiliser... soo annoying... so now my key won't start the car and the other key works ever time.
I'll have to get a new key, which will cost me how much?
While this was going on we looked at our finances and have decided that we are going to sell the car and go for something like a volvo S40 1.6 diesel (the newer models) they look the business.
I'll probably sell the Astra for below book value which is 3500 on revenue.ie
Went to Belfast and the car "survived" up and back to Galway until we hit Loughrea Co.Galway. We stopped at an Opel Garage and left the car in to be repaired. Anyway, they put in a new fuel pump.
All was ok, but now the car will never start cold... it always works on the second start.
Whats annoying also is that the working key only sometimes works to remotely unlock the car. And sometimes when I start the car the locks will go up and then down.
What could be the problem?
We are replacing the second key with a brand new one which will cost 110euro.
You need the special tool...
Did you already replace one of the keys?? If not then I would say its all linked into the key/immobiliser problem and replacing the keys and having them both programmed together by Opel should solve the problem.
BTW them "special tools" usually do the job! Must get myself one of those!!
Thanks Dean09, I'll get ontop of those issues asap and let ye know how I got on. The special tools probably cost a lot more than the car...
i bought a 00 opel astra from done deal two weeks ago an everything was goin perfect until yesterday when the car just totally concked out for no reason, AA was called an they could,nt find any problem at the roadside so it went to the garage, the fuel pump was changed an it still wouldnt starrt, the computer was put on the car an no problems wer found, the garage is lookin into the ECU but sureley that would have shown a problem when the computer was put onto it?? im at my witts end with the car, how can a garage not ind a problem with the car, i trust the garage as a friend of mine works there but im starting to think have i been to trusting when buyin the car,, does this sound like a scam to anyone?? im just totally lost with the car an the bill just keeps adding up
Opels aint alone in this "not starting" even when everything is
checked over and the fuel pump/fuses and relays have bein checked.
On the few cars where i've come across this in was either the immobiliser
or ignition/key problem. The code from the key becoming
Tricking enough and time consuming to fit. Hope you get it sorted
I recently bought an 02 Astra that would start but not idle, but could also be made to rev high, but once the revs died, it would die and no amount of accelerator pumping would revive it.
Once stopped however, it would start again immediately...then the same routine, it would start idling roughly, ping and stop after a few seconds.
It would also run well when "start ya bastard" was sprayed into the inlet duct where it disconnects from the air filter, so I knew the ignition and ignition timing were working well.
Checked the fuel pump by attaching the earth wire as kindly advised in this thread, to earth, and while the pump kept pumping, the motor still konked out and fuel could be released from the valve on the injector line, so it would appear it was getting sufficient fuel, even though I didnt have a pressure guage to measure it.
I then detached the electrical connection to the air flow meter, the one inbetween the air filter and the carburettor, and was able to sustain revs, and accelerate revs.
At this point, I purchased a second hand unit 5wk9 606 from the wreckers for $77, and the car is running as sweet as a nut. Oringinally, I thought it wasn't to be so, but the car's computer did the adjustments, and all is well.
I will say that this car was bought from a flood auction, so obviously, these air flow meters don't like water.
Just thought I'd post this here in thanks for all the info I've gleaned from this site and in the hope, it may help someone else without the exhorbitant costs that can sometimes be involved.
Cheers from Oz,