Warning

 

Close

Confirm Action

Are you sure you wish to do this?

Confirm Cancel
Member Login
Posted: 12/10/2005 3:04:29 PM EDT
My son has a 97 Mercury Tracer. About a week ago he tried to start it and it just wouldn't start. Engine turned over, sounded like it wanted to start (sputtering noise) but just wouldn't get going. Luckily it was at my house so at least we didn't have to tow it. I decided to buy an Actron auto scanner to read the codes that the onboard computer was generating before I started to just buy parts foolishly. Well the code scanner did not find any fault codes at all. The battery was weak from trying to start it so I jumped the battery before it died out too. After we jump the battery it turned over and ran but very rough and it almost seemed like it may not be running on all the cylinders. I suspect the coil pack because I had a similar problem with my ford van. Is there a way to detrmine if the coil pack is sending the correct amount of spark to the plugs? Any other test that I should be doing ?

If it were mine I'd tow it to a garage and let them deal with it, but it's not mine and the kid has little money so I'm trying to do this as cheap as possible

Thanks in advance
Link Posted: 12/10/2005 3:29:10 PM EDT
The repair manual should say how to test the coils. A shop manual is a must if you don't have one.
Link Posted: 12/10/2005 5:12:13 PM EDT
How long has it sat??
Could be water in gas. Try putting new gas in with octane booster.

Link Posted: 12/10/2005 7:11:07 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Stang1911:
How long has it sat??
Could be water in gas. Try putting new gas in with octane booster methyl alcohol.




Testing resistance in coils is hit or miss at best. Out of spec coils will work and in spec coils wont. They need to be load tested.

Sounds like maybe water in the gas. Check the air cleaner for a nest.
Link Posted: 12/10/2005 9:17:55 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 12/10/2005 9:28:26 PM EDT by Gary_P]
unplug the mass airflow sensor and give it a try

is the timing belt broke or perhaps wore out which may have resulted in the mechanical timing to be in error. check to see if the crankshaft damper is not wobbling around generating inconsistent CKP signals. pull the cover to check base timing

Gary
Link Posted: 12/10/2005 9:20:06 PM EDT
just put a timing light on the spark plug wires, if the light lights up, then the coils are sending sparks to the plug wires at least, and presumably the plugs, though you could have a short somewhere in the sparkplug cable where it connects to the plugs.
Link Posted: 12/11/2005 8:29:46 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 12/11/2005 8:33:31 AM EDT by die-tryin]
check Fuel Pump fuse. Like others have stated if you really wanna check coil, jus put timing light on No 1 sparkplug wire. but I doubt it would the coil IMO. Also, most coil paks either work or they dont, ive never seen one cause the issues your stating. Id say its a fuel issue, could be clogged injectors or filter or faulty pump.

Also , to ask the obvious. Was anyone messing in the engine bay prior to this issue. YOud be surprised at what human error can cause. Even jus replacing a battery ive seen cars act all weird cuz someone bumped some connection somewhere and caused issues. Id ask him if he had the hood open at all prior to this issue. Or if it honestly jus started acting up. Also he didnt drive thru any deep water did he? Also look at the coolant make sure he didnt blow a headgasket. Timing would be another issue, if it jumped time, you could have this issue.
Link Posted: 12/16/2005 2:32:30 PM EDT
WELL?!?

What did you find out?



Gary
Link Posted: 12/18/2005 6:55:05 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Gary_P:
WELL?!?

What did you find out?



Gary



Unfortunately we found out nothing yet. Gas is fresh gas that was put in before the day it started acting weird. I don't suspect bad gas because I get my gas for my two vehicles at the same station and I've had no problems with the other vehicles, I don't have the tools, time or patience to screw with the timing belt. fuel pump seems to work because we did have it running, the only thing that was done to it was I replaced a burned out head light bulb. He's been saving his money and this week we plan on taking it to a mechanic. I appreciate all the opinions and suggestions. I just have no patience when it comes to small cars that I have to kneel down on the ground just to work under the hood.
Link Posted: 12/18/2005 12:11:44 PM EDT

Originally Posted By 19suburban96:

Originally Posted By Gary_P:
WELL?!?

What did you find out?



Gary



Unfortunately we found out nothing yet. Gas is fresh gas that was put in before the day it started acting weird. I don't suspect bad gas because I get my gas for my two vehicles at the same station and I've had no problems with the other vehicles, I don't have the tools, time or patience to screw with the timing belt. fuel pump seems to work because we did have it running, the only thing that was done to it was I replaced a burned out head light bulb. He's been saving his money and this week we plan on taking it to a mechanic. I appreciate all the opinions and suggestions. I just have no patience when it comes to small cars that I have to kneel down on the ground just to work under the hood.




LOL! If the car came to me with no codes I would check the basics first. Spark, Fuel, Compression. It sounds like it's not firing on all cylinders. There was a big problem with Ford/Mercury 2.0's with valvetrains that caused misfires one or more cylinders, I don't remember which years were effected though. Most of the time it would set a trouble code for a #4 Misfire, but not always.

Top Top