Videokarma.org

Go Back   Videokarma.org TV - Video - Vintage Television & Radio Forums > Things with Motors

We appreciate your help

in keeping this site going.
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 12-24-2017, 08:51 PM
Adam's Avatar
Adam Adam is offline
VideoKarma Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Madison, WI
Posts: 2,212
2003 Grand Marquis problems

So about 4 months ago I decided to floor it, and the engine hesitated and then took off but started missing badly. I had no time to work on it, so it sat for about a month.

Then I figured I'd just try changing the plugs and see what happens. Only two plugs were at all dirty enough that I thought they might cause any problems, but after I put in the new plugs and started it up it ran fine.

Now it would still miss occasionally when idling, not regularly, about once a minute increasing in regularity the longer I sat idling, and in drive with the brakes on only, it wouldn't do it if I shifted into neutral. It would also sometimes give me trouble when going uphill, but would start running fine if I accelerated while going up the hill.

Then after about 3 weeks of running more or less ok, I was stuck in traffic for a long time, and it started running crappy again. I pulled out the plugs, and they weren't dirty at all. Now, I haven't driven it much since, but what I have found out is that if I let it sit for a few days, it runs fine afterwards, until I let it idle in drive for about a minute, then it starts running crappy again. If I let it sit again it runs fine, and the cycle repeats itself.

Now I don't really know where to start, other than it's not the spark plugs (and probably not the ignition coils either). Vacuum leak? fuel pump? clogged tailpipe Any ideas?

I miss having older cars that I understand better. If anyone wants to swap me for or is looking to sell (in the 2-3K range or less) an older American car in drivable (or nearly drivable) condition with a carburetor, distributor, and no stinkin' computers, with an 8 (or at least a 6) let me know.

And it's freezing in my garage. I've left one of those electric radiators on in there for about 24 hours now, cause I wanted to go out there and work on that remote RCA b/w in the metal cabinet I got at the fall etf, and it's barely made any difference in the temperature, if at all.
__________________
The quality goes in, before the cat goes on!!

Last edited by Adam; 12-24-2017 at 08:54 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 12-24-2017, 10:28 PM
Eric H's Avatar
Eric H Eric H is offline
Administrator
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: So. Calif
Posts: 11,379
It's probably a bad coil. I work on these every day (In Crown Vic trim) and a misfire is almost always a coil, or Coolant from a leaky intake down a plug hole, but you would have noticed that.

You can test them easily enough by holding the end close to a ground while running, a good one will arc out the end of the boot and then some with a healthy snap, a weak one often won't have enough kick to make it to the end of the boot.

Just do one at a time until you find the weak one, you'll probably set some codes doing this but that's easily fixed.
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 12-24-2017, 10:50 PM
zeno zeno is offline
VideoKarma Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: New Hampshire
Posts: 3,185
Never had misses on my former 2003 Grand Marque ( 240,000 mi) or
my 2004 Crown Vic Sport ( 150,000 mi). I wouldnt bail out of that
car, they are as good as anything ever made. In fact you can not find used
ones in my area cause a few taxi companies buy every one they can
find under 200 K mi. I gave up & got my squaw a new Caravan. I
wish it were a clean CV , Marque or better yet a B body Roadmaster LT-1
Surprised with all that missing it hasnt set a code.........

73 Zeno
LFOD !
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 12-24-2017, 11:13 PM
Adam's Avatar
Adam Adam is offline
VideoKarma Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Madison, WI
Posts: 2,212
If I can stand to get out in the cold tomorrow, I'll try that with the coils. I had assumed because when I pulled the plugs for the 2nd time, I didn't see any dirty ones the coils were ok.

Everyone says these cars last forever, but this is giving me all this trouble at only 73K miles. In comparison, my 72 Impala with the 400 had 115K on it when I sold it in 2006, still had the original 2 barrel carburetor on it. It ran great, it was just leaking loads of trans fluid, I think out of the front seal.
__________________
The quality goes in, before the cat goes on!!
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 12-25-2017, 12:11 AM
old_tv_nut's Avatar
old_tv_nut old_tv_nut is offline
See yourself on Color TV!
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Rancho Sahuarita
Posts: 4,769
I had a 2003 Marauder for 10 years/100,000 miles when I traded it in just because. Second the hunt for a bad coil. If that doesn't do it, I'd think about sensors (I forget what there is - oxygen? air flow?).
__________________
www.bretl.com
Old TV literature, New York World's Fair, and other miscellany
Reply With Quote
Audiokarma
  #6  
Old 12-25-2017, 12:42 AM
Boobtubeman's Avatar
Boobtubeman Boobtubeman is offline
<---WANTED: Motorola 17P6
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Woodland Ca.
Posts: 832
Just replaced a crankcase position sensor on my folks 1997 taurus GL when it started randomly cutting out..

SR
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 12-25-2017, 10:46 AM
old_tv_nut's Avatar
old_tv_nut old_tv_nut is offline
See yourself on Color TV!
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Rancho Sahuarita
Posts: 4,769
Quote:
Originally Posted by Boobtubeman View Post
Just replaced a crankcase position sensor on my folks 1997 taurus GL when it started randomly cutting out..

SR
Re-reading the symptoms: if it's bouts of multiple misses coming and going, it sounds more like a sensor than a single plug or coil.
__________________
www.bretl.com
Old TV literature, New York World's Fair, and other miscellany
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 12-25-2017, 08:57 PM
Jon A.'s Avatar
Jon A. Jon A. is offline
Don't mess with Esther.
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: Canada
Posts: 4,213
Quote:
Originally Posted by Boobtubeman View Post
Just replaced a crankcase position sensor on my folks 1997 taurus GL when it started randomly cutting out..

SR
I've seen a bad distributor pickup coil cause that. Often times it was a bear to get the thing re-cranked, not to mention pulling over without the power assist which is probably harder than actual manual steering.
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 12-25-2017, 11:17 PM
bgadow's Avatar
bgadow bgadow is offline
VideoKarma Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Federalsburg, MD
Posts: 5,587
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jon A. View Post
I've seen a bad distributor pickup coil cause that. Often times it was a bear to get the thing re-cranked, not to mention pulling over without the power assist which is probably harder than actual manual steering.
I had an older Dakota with this issue. It would run fine for months, then stall. After it cut out, the longer you let it set, the longer it would run once you started it. If it sat for 5 minutes it would run a mile...but let it sit an hour & it would run another 3 months. Only figured out the cause when it finally quit altogether one snowy day.

Last month I looked at a customer's Grand Marquis; the odometer read around 385k. It was well broken-in!
__________________
Bryan
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 12-26-2017, 08:22 PM
Boobtubeman's Avatar
Boobtubeman Boobtubeman is offline
<---WANTED: Motorola 17P6
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Woodland Ca.
Posts: 832
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jon A. View Post
I've seen a bad distributor pickup coil cause that. Often times it was a bear to get the thing re-cranked, not to mention pulling over without the power assist which is probably harder than actual manual steering.
Been there.. The taurus stalled once in traffic and luckily it re-started. The problem was random for awhile there. Finally, it threw a "check engine" light and my neighbor brought home his SNAP ON scanner from work and pulled the code. Then he researched mitchel on line and narrowed it down to the crankcase sensor. I admit i was skeptical when i changed it out, but its been smooth ever since..

SR
Reply With Quote
Audiokarma
  #11  
Old 12-25-2017, 01:50 AM
MadMan's Avatar
MadMan MadMan is offline
'A Disgusting Brony'
 
Join Date: Oct 2016
Location: Chicago
Posts: 678
Quote:
Originally Posted by Adam View Post
I miss having older cars that I understand better.
You hit the nail on the head. You don't understand it, that's all. The crown vics are actually about the most-traditional modern computerized cars. They have their issues like any car, but there's a good reason why they were favored by police and livery for decades, and actually forced Ford to continue making them for 10 or so years past when Ford intended to discontinue them.

Get yourself a cheesy obdII scanner from ebay or amazon for ~$20. Even the cheapest one that won't describe what a code means is fine - just google the code number it gives you. Chances are good that if you have a misfire, which you do, you'll have a code (check engine light is on). The code will either indicate a particular cylinder (then you can focus your efforts on that one only [don't forget that fords are numbered 1234 on one side and 5678 on the other]) -OR- it'll say random/multiple misfire, then it'll be less likely to be one cylinder problem, and more likely a vacuum leak or something like that.

Like Eric said, these coils go bad all the time. And even if you pull a coil out and put a plug in the end of it, hold the plug to ground, and watch it spark while the engine runs, isn't necessarily a good indicator, as coils can stop intermittently, especially once they get hot. Also like he said, oil and antifreeze leaking into the spark plug wells is very common, and typically once the rubber boot is soaked in either, it won't insulate the spark very well, and will cause a misfire. So if you were ignoring that one coil boot that was wet with antifreeze, that's the culprit. If you get a code that indicates a single cylinder misfire, you can switch that coil with another, clear the codes, and try again. When the code comes back, if it's for a different cylinder, the coil is at fault.

Beyond that, vacuum leaks are fairly common. Ford liked to make some of the vacuum hoses out of thin rubber that expires easily and collapses, or thin plastic tubes that crumble or crack. Check all vacuum connections to the intake, especially in the back where it's less obvious, and just look at the integrity of the hoses and tubes. Most commonly, it's the rubber hose that goes to the evap purge valve, it collapses and the vacuum sucks a hole open in it. Though less common, the big rubber intake hose coming from the air filter can also crack, and create a small leak that will be worse under varying conditions. Remove it completely and take a good close look.

Another common issue is that the electrical connectors for the coils AND the injectors have a tendency to have their clasps break, making them able to come loose under the vibration of the engine. Ensure they're all tight. A loose one with a broken clasp can be easily remedied with a pencil-eraser size dab of silicone right into the space where the clasp of the plug broke off. Plug it back in, and when it dries, it will stay in place, but still be easy enough to pull back off for service.

Another thing to note - although it won't cause a misfire - is that this type of air flow meter tends to get dirty and needs to be cleaned once in a while to maintain performance. A can of air flow meter cleaner will help you with that.

Happy hunting!

Last edited by MadMan; 12-25-2017 at 02:11 AM.
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 12-25-2017, 02:20 PM
Adam's Avatar
Adam Adam is offline
VideoKarma Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Madison, WI
Posts: 2,212
It's only 9 degrees outside, and while the Mercury will fit in the garage, it's not deep enough to really work on it with the door shut. And even with that electric heater going for 2 days, it's only any warmer within a 2 foot radius of where I left the heater.

I've found it has to be at least over 20 to work on anything outside. I can wear lots of coats, but I've found that under 20 degrees I either have to choose between wearing thick gloves or having my fingers go numb, neither of which lets me do much of anything.

But you guys have given me some good stuff to think about, as soon as it warms up a little I'll check those coils. The check engine light goes off like crazy, but I thought those code readers were hundreds of dollars (I think they were the last time I looked them years ago), so I just didn't bother with it. Any recommendations on a good one, not too expensive?

I think I'm just going to stop trying to ineffectively heat the garage with that electric radiator, and bring whatever electronic stuff I want to work on inside. I can use my desk in the basement, or even the kitchen table - I'm here by myself for the next 2 weeks.
__________________
The quality goes in, before the cat goes on!!
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 12-25-2017, 02:50 PM
dieseljeep dieseljeep is offline
VideoKarma Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 6,366
Quote:
Originally Posted by Adam View Post
It's only 9 degrees outside, and while the Mercury will fit in the garage, it's not deep enough to really work on it with the door shut. And even with that electric heater going for 2 days, it's only any warmer within a 2 foot radius of where I left the heater.

I've found it has to be at least over 20 to work on anything outside. I can wear lots of coats, but I've found that under 20 degrees I either have to choose between wearing thick gloves or having my fingers go numb, neither of which lets me do much of anything.

But you guys have given me some good stuff to think about, as soon as it warms up a little I'll check those coils. The check engine light goes off like crazy, but I thought those code readers were hundreds of dollars (I think they were the last time I looked them years ago), so I just didn't bother with it. Any recommendations on a good one, not too expensive?

I think I'm just going to stop trying to ineffectively heat the garage with that electric radiator, and bring whatever electronic stuff I want to work on inside. I can use my desk in the basement, or even the kitchen table - I'm here by myself for the next 2 weeks.
Those electric radiators are only good for a tightly closed area. In a drafty place like a garage, you need something like a propane forced air heater. Some refer to them as a Torpedo heater. Mine is adjustable to 80K BTU. I used this thing before I insulated and installed a natural gas unit heater.
In this kind of weather, you might have bite the bullet and see your friendly Ford dealer. When I was younger, I used to work on my own cars as much as possible, but not in this kind of weather. I'm about 90 miles north east of Madison and it's damn cold here.
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 12-25-2017, 03:21 PM
MadMan's Avatar
MadMan MadMan is offline
'A Disgusting Brony'
 
Join Date: Oct 2016
Location: Chicago
Posts: 678
Quote:
Originally Posted by Adam View Post
but I thought those code readers were hundreds of dollars
The little ones have been getting steadily cheaper. If you want a real scanner that can do everything, $2k minimum.

Here's a cheapie basic one
This one is still decently priced, but will also let you look at live sensor data. I have a slightly-higher model one of these (model 6001) that I use daily at my shop for quick checks.

I would definitely recommend getting one with data stream capability. Not all cars have it in the data, I don't think yours does, but some have a misfire counter for each cylinder in the data. Still, when other problems arise, data is very helpful. Without codes and data, it's kind of like working with your eyes closed. And I don't know if you have emissions tests up there, but any of these little scanners will tell you if it's passing (I/M readiness). Also, it's always good to have one of these around to check on family's and friends' cars.

They have some other ones that are just a nub you plug into the car, and download an app on your phone to read it. Haven't yet tried any of those. Also I was just at Harbor Freight the other day and I peeked at the scanners there, I think there was a half-ass decent one for $45 or so.

Last edited by MadMan; 12-25-2017 at 03:33 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 12-25-2017, 03:33 PM
Electronic M's Avatar
Electronic M Electronic M is offline
M is for Memory
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Pewaukee/Delafield Wi
Posts: 10,095
Quote:
Originally Posted by MadMan View Post
The little ones have been getting steadily cheaper. If you want a real scanner that can do everything, $2k minimum.

Here's a cheapie basic one
This one is still decently priced, but will also let you look at live sensor data. I have a slightly-higher model one of these (model 6001) that I use daily at my shop for quick checks. But I would definitely recommend getting one with data stream capability. Not all cars have it in the data, I don't think yours does, but some have a misfire counter for each cylinder in the data. Still, when other problems arise, data is very helpful. Without codes and data, it's kind of like working with your eyes closed. And I don't know if you have emissions tests up there, but any of these little scanners will tell you if it's passing (I/M readiness).

They have some other ones that are just a nub you plug into the car, and download an app on your phone to read it. Haven't yet tried any of those. Also I was just at Harbor Freight the other day and I peeked at the scanners there, I think there was a half-ass decent one for $45 or so.
Only emissions testing required in Wisconsin is in Milwaukee and Waukesha (where I am) counties, and it is just a computer plugin at some local shops that signed on to do it.IIRC there is a cutoff for cars older than ~1996 where you don't need emissions tests for those.
__________________
Tom C.

What I want. --> http://www.videokarma.org/showpost.p...62&postcount=4

Reading between the scan lines since the mid 2000's.
Reply With Quote
Audiokarma
Reply


Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 05:55 AM.



Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
ęCopyright 2012 VideoKarma.org, All rights reserved.