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Discussion Starter #1
Hey guys!
So I've been reading other people's threads about their cars not starting and I've tried all of the advise that have been told to others...
I have a 1988 Mustang GT. 5.0/5 spd
I still cant get my car to start and stay running though!!
So here's the deal, yesterday I was messing with the timing a little bit, trying to advance it. After I was done and happy with that I went out for the road test to make sure I didn't have any detonation. I got about a 1/2 mile down the road and it started to detonate at about 3k RPMs, so I backed off the gas and tried to just cruise home nice and easy, but the car shut off and I couldn't get it to start back up!! I was able to coast all the way down the hill and into my driveway. Once I got it back into my garage I started to check things. I could smell fuel coming from the tail pipe so I knew it had to be an ignition problem...
I started by pulling the #1 plug - no spark, then I checked the #2 plug - no spark, then I tested the coil - no spark. I then check the wires for the coil and the voltage was perfect so I then checked the resistance of the coil and it was dead! So I ran to the store and grabbed an MSD Blaster coil. I swapped it in and the car fired right up, no hesitation, no miss firing, nothing. I let the car warm up for a minute of 2 then took it back out onto the road for another test. I got all the way around the block with no problems. It didnt shut off or detonate anymore... So I go down the road in another direction and I get 2 miles away and it shuts off again!!!! I let it sit for like 3 minutes (while I was punching the steering wheel and cursing at it) and then tried it again and it started. I tried to pull away and head back home and when I went to shift into 2nd gear it died again!! I couldnt get it started affter that. I had to get it towed home and by that time it was dark!! Its back in my garage and now that it's a new morning I went out and started rechecking everything. This time I started with the wires first! No voltage at the wires!!! (KOEO) Could it be a fuse? Where would I find that at?? I checked everything under the dash and they are all good still, and none of them are labled as ignition or anything like that...

Does anybody know what the problem could be??? What am I missing?? What didn't I check??

Thanks for any help you guys can think of!!

Anthony
 

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mustangs like the saying "if it works dont touch me" but try to turn back the timing to how you had it, maybe the wires at the TFI module at the bottom of the distributor are damaged and you bent them causing them to internally break
 

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Discussion Starter #5
mustangs like the saying "if it works dont touch me" but try to turn back the timing to how you had it, maybe the wires at the TFI module at the bottom of the distributor are damaged and you bent them causing them to internally break
Now that you mentioned it, when I was turning the distributor back and forth trying to break it loose so I could move it freely, I think I heard the fuel pump turning on and off when I went back and forth... Would I need a new distributor if thats the case??
 

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I suspect the pickup inside the distributor, unless you were using the end of the module to push on in effort to turn it. But I suspect the pickup because you say it would start up after it cooled off and then it'd shut off after it got warm. The pickup will eventually completely fail if it's not replaced.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I suspect the pickup inside the distributor, unless you were using the end of the module to push on in effort to turn it. But I suspect the pickup because you say it would start up after it cooled off and then it'd shut off after it got warm. The pickup will eventually completely fail if it's not replaced.
Where is the pick up at and what does it look like?
Are they expensive?
 

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They cost around $20 at Auto Zone.

Take your distributor cap off, take the rotor button out, and look where the module would be plugging into inside the distributor, that's the pickup.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Does anybody have a picture of what I should be looking at??
I took my cap off and I see a little black piece with a red, black, and green wire at the bottom of it.....they look ok to me.
 

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Does anybody have a picture of what I should be looking at??
I took my cap off and I see a little black piece with a red, black, and green wire at the bottom of it.....they look ok to me.
Youve found it. Dont judge a book by its cover.
 

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That's it and the damage is internal. You can't tell by looking at it.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
If I cant tell by looking at it, how do I test it to confirm that that's what the problem actually is?
Money is gona be tight for me this month so I'd rather spend $20 on an easy/quick fix rather than burn my rent money on a new MSD distributor if you know what I mean.
Also, if that is the problem, how do I go about removing it to replace it? I see 2 tiny bolts down there.... do I take them out? If so, I assume I need a specialty tool for that, there isnt enough room for my socket to get all the way down there!
 

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Ok so I did all those tests and everything seems to be fine!
The only think I was confused about (in that link) is down towards the bottom, it says "4. If all else fails, remove it and replace it. If you check the new sending unit, it should have 0 ohms. A bad unit will show around 15,000ohms between points A and C." What is the sending unit? Is that the grey box mounted to the distributor that gets plugged in? If so, when I checked the resistance on A and C like it says 14.???. So does that mean mine is bad?? I called the part store and they have one of those in stock for $39.49!
 

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Does anybody have a picture of what I should be looking at??
I took my cap off and I see a little black piece with a red, black, and green wire at the bottom of it.....they look ok to me.
EagleAutosport pointed me in the right direction complete thread here
with pics.
http://www.allfordmustangs.com/forums/5-0l-tech/149785-1985-mustang-random-no-spark-new-tfi.html#post1316529


TFI plugs into the PIP. Its either the TFI (outside of the distributor) or PIP Module (inside the distributor). To get the PIP in the distributor will have to come out.
 

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The dizzy need to be remove to test the Pick-up Coil( the sending unit). If the sensor is showing 14,??? ohms, I would replace it. Specially is the unit was test while it was cold. The Resistance will go up as the temperature Rises. And it will be in the 15,000 or more Ohms range.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Yea my car hasnt started in days and I took the dist. out and tested everything inside my house. I guess I need to replace the module. Maybe I'll do that today before I leave for work. I let you guys know what they verdict is.....
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Ok, got the new TFI and of course now my battery is shop!!!
So I cant even try to start the car to see if the problem is fixed....
If its not one ******* thing, its a ******* nother!!!!!!!
 

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Discussion Starter #20
STILL WON'T START!!! I'm getting sooo pissed!!
Ok, so here's what I've done:
Coil went bad, replaced it with a brand new MSD. Battery went bad, replaced it with a brand new Deka. I thought it was the pick-up that went bad, so I bought a brand new one and rebuilt the distributor. Car still wouldn't start so I replaced the EEC relay. Still wouldn't start so I got a used (but good) computer from an 87 GT 5 spd car and it STIILL won't start!! I took the brand new EEC relay back to get my money back before I got the new computer, so I didn't use a new relay with the new computer...
I don't know what else to check!!
Here's the weird thing, when I put my voltmeter on the + and - of the coil plug I get .003 volts, but when I put the - clip of the voltmeter on the - side of the battery directly I get a strong 12.87 volt reading from the + side of the coil plug!!! Went I put the - clip of the voltmeter back to the - side of the coil plug it goes back to .003! I then tried to used a jumper wire to feed a direct ground to the coil plug and tried to start the car... nothing. My tach isn't even responding to anything! The only time the tach needle moves is when I have the key off, and then turn the key to the on position it moves to my setting, like usual. But that's it!!
Does anybody know whats going on with my car???
 
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