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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I got my 90 mustang GT in on a good trade. It has a BAD problem with starting. Almost like its got a VERY bad carb on it. BUT its all factory and fuel injected. Only thing thats been removed is the Smog Pump and EGR. problem is it literally takes almost 40 seconds of holding down the starter for it to FINALLY run, and when it does finally run it kinda backfires in the intake and and have to keep giving it gas to keep it running. But after it gets a little warm it idles and runs perfect. drive it 200 miles and runs great. stop at store to put gas in it and got to hold down starter for another 30 seconds before it finally cranks back up.

When i got it it had no O2 sensor harness on it. thought that was what was wrong with it. finally found one and bought it and hooked them up and still took forever to crank, but problems got even worse, after running for about 5 minutes it starts missing BAD from idle to about 2500 RPM then runs Like a new car. So i unplugged them for now. But i got to get those fixed also.
The car has a new Temp sensor on it, New IAC valve on it, Just tested the tps and it checked out perfect. Its got good fuel pressure to the Shredder valve. Spark plugs and wires and rotor button and cap all look good. Any one have any idea what could be going wrong? I would REALLY appreciate it if anyone could give me somewhere to look. I dont want to have to take it to a shop, but its not looking too good as of rite now.

PLS HELP!!!:?:
 

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Sounds like you need to set the base timing. My distributor hold down bolt loosened and allowed the distributor to turn on its own. After that happened, it would not start.

Do a quick visual check of the factory chisel mark on the distributor base. It should be pretty close if not right at the notch in the block.

As Ninja mentioned, you could have weak spark too. Before you start replacing parts though, make sure you have the current parts set up right. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
The coil i have not replaced, but i did pull a random wire to check for fire and it was like lightning coming from it, as if it was like a new one, but i will buy a new one and try it.

I also did try to mess with the timing a little, i marked where it was set and loosened it and retarded and advanced the timing, both made it even worse.... so i set it back to where it originally was.....

I appreciate y'all trying to help me out,.... this is killing me. lol.
 

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Don't buy a coil if you don't need it!! Waste of money.

Did you pull the spout connector when you tested base timing?
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
thanks for the advice. The only thing i did was loosen the distributor hold down bolt and periodically moved it further back then further forward. it just basically got worse, so i put it back exactly where it was in the first place. I was actually thinking of pulling the whole distributor out and completely resetting the timing the best i can by ear.... as i dont have a timing light, but i have noticed, on the harmonic balancer you can see where the factory line is for the timing and then about a half inch to the right of it someone has marked another line with some type of White paint.... Any idea what that could be for?
 

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When you were clocking the distributor, the computer was trying to "undo" what you were doing. If you have never removed the distributor, don't do it now. There is no need.

Do a search on setting the base timing. There is a "Spout Connector" that you must remove to tell the computer you are setting the timing, so it won't make any adjustments on its own.

If I was in your situation, I'd set the timing to stock so you can see if you can get back to a good running condition. You don't need a timing light to do this.

If you look closely at the base of the distributor, right where it goes into the block, you'll see a chisel cut, or mark. This was made at the factory once they got the initial timing set. If you look at the block, right where the distributor goes into it, you'll see a ridge that has a step down (if you go left to right). The mark on the distributor should be right at that step down.

Locate the spout connector (I forgot where it is on your car) and remove it. Loosen the distributor hold-down bolt and rotate the distributor until the mark lines up with the step down. Tighten the hold down bolt.

Now, with the spout removed, start the car. Let it idle for a minute then put the spout back in. Your timing is now reset to factory.

Without seeing the mark, I can't say. Take a pic and post it.
 

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Whoa dude, hold on.

You cannot set timing by ear. Period. And that's what it sounds like you need to do because what you describe sounds like it's retarded.

What you need to do:
Get under there with a brush and brake cleaner, and clean that balancer to see the timing lines and NUMBERS, not the line or the groove because that has nothing to do with the base timing. You clean the balancer because the lines you need to see can be covered by rust.

Grab you a 1/2 inch wrench for the hold down bolt.

Drive to Auto Zone and use their timing light for free, you can set the timing there in the parking lot.

Base timing is 10 degrees, you should be able to go up to 13-16 or so, depending on your particular engine. If you don't know how to do this, get one of the guys there to help you. You pull out the SPOUT connector to set the timing, then reinstall after tightening the distributor.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Bradley, I am going to try exactly what you just told me rite after i get off the computer. Now the person that posted last said my timing is to far retarded, so i am going to try to advance it and see what that does for me. I will take a picture of it also when i get out there... Do you have any clue about the problem im having after i plugged the O2 sensors up? the acting like its running on 4 cylinders until about 2500 to 3000 rpm? could that possibly be the timing? But it also does not do it all the time, just when it feels like it, sometimes for about the whole time im driving it and sometimes not at all?
 

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+1 eagle

In case nobody has told you the spout connector "must be unplugged" to adjust your timing or your computer will do anything to try and get it back to normal. The spout connector is right in front of the distributor.. It is the only thing hanging there with a 2 prong connector and plug rammed in to complete the circuit.. Pull this with car off.. Then start and you could try to advance and retard to get it better.. But rent the gun and do it right.. Or you could blow a nice 1/4 hole through a piston :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
+1 eagle

In case nobody has told you the spout connector "must be unplugged" to adjust your timing or your computer will do anything to try and get it back to normal. The spout connector is right in front of the distributor.. It is the only thing hanging there with a 2 prong connector and plug rammed in to complete the circuit.. Pull this with car off.. Then start and you could try to advance and retard to get it better.. But rent the gun and do it right.. Or you could blow a nice 1/4 hole through a piston :)


OMG. that would suck. How much is it to rent a timing light normally? Thanks for the info!
 

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Go pay at like an autozone or something... Bring it home and fix it then bring it back and you should get all your money back... It's usually only a deposit required while it's out.. In case you smash it..

I just wanted to stress again to pull the spout plug.. Only because you say it got worse when you tried to retard or advance the timing.. And that worse you talk about could be the computer screwing with injector timing and other important details to correct the timing itself..so don't think it got worse until you redo it with the plug out.. Snap it in... And go for a boot...luk
 

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Of course, it is best to use a timing light, but with the info from your previous posts, I am merely trying to get you back to a known good baseline. You don't need a timing light to set the timing back to stock, since that is what the mark is for that I described above. Once you get the timing to stock, you'll be able to do more diagnosis.

You'll want to pull codes, then kill the memory and start it up again. Let it relearn for about 10 minutes of idling and then pull codes again. Compare the two lists. I expect the O2 sensors to be on the first list, but if you have them working properly, they should not be on the second list.

Once you get to this point, you should have an idea of what you need to investigate further.

Have you ever had the distributor out? Has the car ever run right for you? If I read your first post correctly, it has never run right. I wonder if you are one tooth off on the distributor. I was one tooth off, and had a similar set of symptoms to what you have. If you suspect the distributor has been out, it might be worth your time to find TDC and make sure the rotor is pointing at the Number 1 plug wire.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Of course, it is best to use a timing light, but with the info from your previous posts, I am merely trying to get you back to a known good baseline. You don't need a timing light to set the timing back to stock, since that is what the mark is for that I described above. Once you get the timing to stock, you'll be able to do more diagnosis.

You'll want to pull codes, then kill the memory and start it up again. Let it relearn for about 10 minutes of idling and then pull codes again. Compare the two lists. I expect the O2 sensors to be on the first list, but if you have them working properly, they should not be on the second list.

Once you get to this point, you should have an idea of what you need to investigate further.

Have you ever had the distributor out? Has the car ever run right for you? If I read your first post correctly, it has never run right. I wonder if you are one tooth off on the distributor. I was one tooth off, and had a similar set of symptoms to what you have. If you suspect the distributor has been out, it might be worth your time to find TDC and make sure the rotor is pointing at the Number 1 plug wire.
I got a code reader from autozone today. Have not had time to pull codes yet, I have to work 3 12 hour night shifts starting thursday night. But when im off monday im going to get further into it.
When you said kill the memory how am i supposed to do that? Pull the battery cable for a length of time?

And whoever had it before me had put a brand new ford motorsport Ignition control module and Distributor in it. Its brand new. and i tried the timing, it is cranking a little better, but i think it is one tooth off. i had to turn it as far to the left as it could go (Before the Ignition control module hit the Thermostat housing) and it started actually idling like it should when it first crunk up and i didnt have to keep giving it gas. and it did crank alot faster. so Im pretty sure i got to pull TDC and reset the timing.
Im so glad were actually onto something with it....
 

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Good to hear man. Sounds like you got it. Good luck..

And of course luk
 

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To kill the memory, remove the ground cable from the battery, and turn on the head lights. This will drain the computer of any residual current, and kill the KAM.

Don't forget about the Spout connector. This is important to remove whenever you mess with the timing, since the computer will fight you if it remains in place.

When you try to switch teeth, try counter-clockwise first. When you have the distributor back in, make sure your mark is where the step-down is, so it will be at the factory position.
 
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