Car Only Starts When Engine is Cold

Asked by Mar 02, 2016 at 03:26 PM about the 2002 Chevrolet Malibu Base

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

My '02 Chevy Malibu will only start when the engine is cold. I'll turn the ignition
and it will crank and crank like it wants to start, but it won't. I took it into the
mechanics, but they had a hard time replicating the issue. They said they did
see an error code for the Mass Airflow Sensor, which they replaced. But the
issue persists.
I checked the spark plugs, and there is spark. If I crank too long, I can smell
gas, so I think the fuel pump is working. Coolant level is fine.
This seems to only happen in warmer months, I went from Nov-Feb without
issue. And once the car starts, it runs like a champ; smooth idle and peppy
acceleration.
I'm at my whit's end, any suggestions would be great. Thanks!

2 Answers

57,755

Hard starting is an indication of a fuel pressure issue, could have the fuel pressure checked, and have the fuel filter replaced, another would be the Coil, or Coils being weak. The spark should look white if good, yellow orange if it is weak. These can be tested at Auto Zone or a garage.

This was indeed a fuel pressure issue. I had the fuel pressure regulator replaced (as recommended by a trusted mechanic) and the car starts every time now.

Your Answer

Add photo

Related Questions

  • 2011 Malibu cold starting 1 answer

    Why would car turnover but struggle to start when cold? Have to pump pedal to start. Once car warms up, car turns over immediately.

    2011 Chevrolet Malibu LT

    -

    Maintenance & Repair

  • 2000 chevy malibu doesn't want to start without starting fluid when it is cold. 4 answers

    changed fuel pump, fuel fiter, cam shaft sensor, plugs, wires, and ignition. When i changed ignition swithc from salvage yard theft light has been on every since but wasn't having starting issue at th...

    2000 Chevrolet Malibu

    -

    Maintenance & Repair

  • Piston Slap or Engine Knock? 1 answer

    I own a 2007 Chevy Malibu LS 2.2L 4 Cylinder Automatic. When i start the engine while cold, there's a knocking or slapping noise. It only happens when it's cold and as the engine warms up it slowl...

    2007 Chevrolet Malibu LS

    -

    Maintenance & Repair

  • Why will my car turn over but not start? 86 answers

    I changed the fuel pump a month ago and two weeks later i got out then went to go somewhere and it would not start. It turned over but it is like it is not getting gas.. I checked the fuel pump and fi...

    2003 Chevrolet Malibu Base

    -

    Maintenance & Repair

  • Cold start 6 answers

    I am having a tough time when trying to start the engine cold. Crank time is too long and when the engine starts it sounds like it is about to die. I havĂȘ to, nearly, wait a full minute before the en...

    Chevrolet Cruze

    -

    Maintenance & Repair

Search Chevrolet Malibu Questions

Chevrolet Malibu Experts

#1 tenspeed
tenspeed
Reputation 1,970
#2 T_S_T
T_S_T
Reputation 1,720
#3 Tom Demyan
Tom Demyan
Reputation 1,320
View All

Related Models For Sale

Used Chevrolet Impala
589 Great Deals out of 29,008 listings starting at $1,300
Used Honda Accord
718 Great Deals out of 83,067 listings starting at $500
Used Nissan Altima
838 Great Deals out of 78,326 listings starting at $470
Used Toyota Camry
873 Great Deals out of 92,512 listings starting at $1,300
Used Chevrolet Camaro
137 Great Deals out of 35,611 listings starting at $1,995
Used Kia Optima
393 Great Deals out of 30,119 listings starting at $1,700
Used Nissan Maxima
271 Great Deals out of 26,141 listings starting at $2,545
Used Hyundai Sonata
531 Great Deals out of 50,273 listings starting at $1,300
Used Honda Civic
510 Great Deals out of 81,681 listings starting at $558

Used Cars For Sale

2017 Chevrolet Malibu For Sale
52 Great Deals out of 56,431 listings starting at $13,770
2016 Chevrolet Malibu For Sale
303 Great Deals out of 11,373 listings starting at $11,500
2015 Chevrolet Malibu For Sale
126 Great Deals out of 5,138 listings starting at $9,490
2014 Chevrolet Malibu For Sale
83 Great Deals out of 4,142 listings starting at $8,500
2013 Chevrolet Malibu For Sale
61 Great Deals out of 2,646 listings starting at $5,995