Car Starting Problems
Chevy Cavalier
Ford Expedition XLT
1982-1994 Chevy Cavaliers

92 cavalier starts but quits instantly when you let go of key Will run if you hold key in run position whats up?


User Avatar
Wiki User

I have not worked on your make and model, but have observed the same symptoms [if I understand your question] once many years ago. At that time, the ingnition switches and wiring were much different than today. I will explain what we found, and maybe you can apply our experience to solving your problem. We were teenagers, and my buddy had a '51 Ford junker he was working on. There had been some shorting and heat damage to some of the wiring, and he had made his own new wiring harness. When he turned the key to the "start" position, the engine would start normally, But when he released the key, and it returned to the "run" position, the engine would quit, just like turning the key to off. After what seemed like hundreds of hours of troubleshooting we found that somehow he had connected the wire, which was SUPPOSED to be connected from the distributor and coil to the "RUN" terminal on the igniton switch, was connected to the "Start" terminal, along with the wire which went to the starter starter solenoid. Thus, the only time that the IGNITION primary circuit received current was when the key was in the start position. When the key was allowed to return to the run position, it was the same as turning the key to off. IF you, or someone has been modifing or working on the wiring system, then it is possible that some wires were "crossed" in error. If the wiring system has not been tampered with, it is possible that there is some kind of defect in the ignition wiring or ignition switch which has resulted in a crossover condition. It sounds like, regardless of the cause, you need the services of a PROFESSIONAL AUTOMOTIVE ELECTRICAL TECHNICIAN. j3h