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Discussion Starter #1
My lebaron started running really rough yesterday and has continued onto today. It rained yesterday slightly too so I thought that had something to do with it but now i'm pretty sure it had nothing to do with it.

Anyways, I was on the freeway and it started to buck and hiccup like it was losing power or not getting enough fuel. I was maintaining a speed of about 60mph and when it was sputtering it did not want to accelerate above that. my A/F ratio gauge was reading mostly lean and would sometimes bounce like normal if the engine started making power like normal. Which was off and on whenever it felt. The car has not stalled yet and is still somewhat drivable but still makes me worried so i'm limiting my driving.

The engine did not make any real funny sounds, no knocking or clunking or anything out of the ordinary.

I pulled codes and got the following...

12.... okay whatever nothing to worry about

35... Radiator fan relay circuit is open or shorted

22... Coolant temperature sensor signal out of range

54..! No fuel injector sync pickup signal during engine rotation

55... again nothin to worry about


I think my Hall Effect Sensor is going or something. Anyone have an idea where I should start for diagnosing this problem I have here. I know I am in need of some new spark plug wires so I'll definitely get some Accel 300+ 8.8mm wires.



Here's what I see when I took my dist cap off.


What else could possibly cause these kinda shinannagins?
 

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I would start by cleaning and tightening all the connectors. Going lean may be a gas leak or failing fuel pump. Just some thoughts.
 

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Clear the codes and see what returns.
Your 22 may have been set by an overheat condition which would explain the fan relay code,is the fan working?
The code 54 would set during a cranking condition usually resulting in a no start.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I went and bought an Accel 8mm universal v8 wiring kit for $30 and it helped but I still get the occasional stumble like something is just missing weather it is related to my distributor or hall pickup sensor, or maybe my oxygen sensor since my a/f ratio gauge reads kind of lean when this happens? I'm still kind of lost on this. It seemed to have gotten better but still persists.


Nice new wires, so much better than my old taylors. These look a lot more durable.
 

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First the 3.0L uses an optical distributor,not a hall effect pickup
Secondly your A/F gauge is reading lean when this happens because they vehicle is misfiring.O2 sensors only read air and a misfire is fuel and air in,no combustion,fuel and air out and the O2 is reading the excess air so it is just doing its job.
Your misfire condition can be caused by any number of things such as ignition(Dist Cap,Plug(s) a problem in the optical distributor, an dirty or malfunctioning injector or an engine mechanical problem (lifter, burnt or sticking valve etc).
Unfortunatly without an ocillascope tracking down an intermittant misfire can prove to be difficult.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I guess I'll start by swapping the distributor since we think it's the optical sensor in the distributor. If it isn't that, my next best idea is a sticking injector maybe.

Thanks for all the input so far!
 

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with the code 54 I would check to see if the pins are pulling out of the distributers harness plug. I replaced the smoking heads on my mother in-laws 3.0 van xmas of 01 and last year it was spitting and sometime cutting off. it would always fire right back up. I found one of the pins in the plug was pulled back a bit and not always making a good connection. It blew my mind that the plug hadn't been touched in almost 5 years before having an issue. When I did some work on my lebarons 3.0 and had to pull the distributor I looked at its plug out of curiosity and found one pin a bit back as well. Its worth a shot. I read something years ago when I got my first mini with a 3.0 that the optical distributors had issues but my experiance tells me they are very reliable.
Tim
Tim
 

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Take a good look at the plugs,they are your eyes into what is going on in the engine.Look for a plug the that may be showing anysigns of fouling or deposit buildup to try to narrow your problem down to a certain cylinder.Be sure you look at the porcelin insulators and check for signs of arcing or cracks. Also take a good look at the dist cap for any signs of cracks or carbon tracking,usually this condition will be more prevalant in high moisture conditions so using a spray bottle with water may help isolate the condition.If you have access to a fuel pressure gauge and injector tester you can run an injector balance test to check injector flow,if not the easiest thing to do is have the injectors chemically cleaned where the fuel system is disabled and the cleaner is run
directly thru the injectors.Fuel system additives will not clean the injectors if the deposit buildup is severe,they are more preventative than anything.
I would hate to see you throw parts at the problem and not fix it.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
My plugs were 6 months old and looked bad, real dirty with weird buildup white-ish colors. i'll take a pic of them as soon as I can.

As far as that one pin being pulled out of place and not connecting well... is it located under the distributor? What's the best way of finding it and checking it's connection?

The inside of the distributor cap and rotor looked decent though, and my new accel spark plug wires helped a lot too.
 

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The easiest way to check for a secondary ignition problems is to start the vehicle and use a spray bottle with water and spray the ignition system components, if there is an ignition problem associated with moisture it will show up.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I have a slight feeling it might be one of the wires under the distributor that commonly get pulled out of place. Are they located under the back of the distributor? I'll have to inspect them ASAP and post my results. I will get that pic of my spark plugs soon too. I'll also try spraying my stuff down a little tonight to see if that causes the issue.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Well I tried as best as I could to push in the wires under my distributor, and it felt like some of them moved or almost clicked into place like they were somewhat loose. Drove the car to my girlfriends house to watch a movie and came back (7-8 miles round trip about half on the freeway) and the car drove great! No lean condition, no loss of power or misfiring, no burps or hiccups. It seems the wires must have wiggled themselves loose over time. I'll check them again tomorrow to make sure they are good and tight but it seems I may have fixed this problem here.

Charger R/T apparently had the same problem here, Matt Winkleman was suggesting the same thing too, i'm so glad there are many knowledgeable people here!

Thanks again to everyone else who helped and added any input and ideas.
 

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Glad you found the problem and hope it is permantely fixed.
The lesson here for everybody(including me) is that when you are diagnosing problems on vehicles that are 20+ years old do not discount loose, corroded, or damaged wiring as being the problem.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
The problem hasn't completely disappeared but has only greatly improved. Drives with more consistent power and doesn't struggle and lose power as often.
Where can I find some electrical connection cleaner or what can I use to help improve what's going on here? Being that it's near the Oil fill cap and I don't always have the best of aim, i'm sure there's a good layer of gunk all over these wires. My hands sure got dirty touching them.

Or would my best bet be to take the distributor apart and take off the connector the check and clean everything?


Here's my 6 month old NGK V-power spark plugs that I replaced with new ones.


Not too pretty, they all pretty much looked identical, but each row is facing a different way, meaning they all had that same ugly black stuff and whitish other side on the plug tip.
 

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First your plugs look my #2 cylinder plug.That is oil fouling.I need valve seals.
I do not have visable smoke,#2 fouls out about every 2 months,we have a plug cleaner so I take the plug out,clean it and put it back in.
Mopar and CRC make electrical contact cleaner.Just be careful,some contact cleaners will melt certain plastics,read the label carefully.
 

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Hi. I had the same problem with my 90 caravan 2.5 turbo. I found out that the a/f gauge was causing problem. I install a/f gauge in the van it worked find for 6 months and the engine started the problems you are having. remove the wire going to probe, see if problem goes away......later
 

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I do not have visable smoke,#2 fouls out about every 2 months,we have a plug cleaner so I take the plug out,clean it and put it back in.

Ha Ha,
I had an old Ford that fouled the plugs from burning oil too. I did find that they would only take 3 cleanings before being replaced. Otherwise I would be cleaning them every day:)
 

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just looked at the pictures of the plugs. You said they were only in there for 6 months. Do you know how many miles that was? You also said it doesn't lose power as often. Does that mean it is still at some time or another losing power? If so does that happen cold, hot, after a long drive? Does your car still have a cat converter and if so how old is it? Factory, aftermarket replacement, number of miles on it? Its hard to tell from the pictures I have seen many high mileage cars in my career (100k to 400k) and have seen many clogged cats and it looks like if those plugs would have been left in would have continued building that stuff up to what I have come to think when I see it is a cat converter is clogged. The build up if it continued would build up and have a point on one side of it. The black side with oil makes me not think this BUT you have a 3.0. 3.0 have the valve guide issue that drops oil into the exhaust port. With you having a 3.0 and if it did have a clogged cat and the guide issue it could be possible the oil is getting kicked back into the cylinder because of the cat. The last paragragh was a bunch of thoughts I ended up typing. But that is what I thought when I saw the plugs. Lets know the answers to the questions I asked at the beginning of the post.
Tim
 

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I had an old Ford that fouled the plugs from burning oil too. I did find that they would only take 3 cleanings before being replaced. Otherwise I would be cleaning them every day:)
Kinda funny you posted this while I was typing my post in this thread. was it a 5.0 or 5.8 and was the cylinders that fouled out #8 first then #4? I just posted having worked on high mileage cars most were fords and we use to get motorcraft plugs they were sold in boxes of 10 (long before they had V-10) the joke use to be why does ford sell plugs in boxes of 10? They answer was so you had an extra plug for 8 and 4. When they would come in missing we went straight to 8 it would always be oiled. If it still missed with a new plug in 8 we did the same to 4. 50% of the time just number 8 would fix it the other 50% they needed both. So I guess they really needed to box them 11 in a box.
Tim
 

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NO: 09-18-92
SUBJECT: Excessive Oil Consumption 3.0L MMC Engine
DATE: Jan. 13, 1993
THIS BULLETIN SUPERSEDES TECHNICAL SERVICE BULLETIN 09-18-92 WHICH SHOULD BE REMOVED FROM YOUR FILES.

DISCUSSION:
Engines built since 11/15/91 (build code BDL7.067) have snap rings installed the exhaust valve guides. Engines built since 10/2/92 (build code BDL7.416) have improved intake and exhaust valve stem seals in addition to the snap rings on the exhaust valve guides. The build code label is located on the intake plenum.

SYMPTOM/CONDITION:
Observed oil smoke in the exhaust at idle or during deceleration (conditions causing high intake manifold vacuum. Excessive oil consumption is more than one quart per 1,000 miles on vehicles with less than 50,000 miles or more than one quart per 750 miles on vehicles with more than 50,000 miles.

DIAGNOSIS:
Verify the PCV system is functioning properly and engine compression is within specifications. Refer to the appropriate technical service manual for test procedures and specifications. If the PCV system and engine compression are within specification, perform the repair procedure below.

PARTS REQUIRED:
Quantity
Description
Part No.

1

Parts kit
MD303116


Kit consists of:


6

Snap Ring
MD185547

12

Seal, valve stem
MD197467





AR

Head, Cylinder
MD182211





AR

Gasket Set, Engine Upper
MD972034


SPECIAL TOOLS REQUIRED:

Groove Cutter
MD998790

Blade, Groove Cutter Replacement
MD998791

Valve Spring Compressor
MD998772A

Valve Stem Seal Installer
MD998729

Valve Guide Installer
MD998115



REPAIR PROCEDURE:
This bulletin involves installing snap rings on the exhaust valve guides and replacing all of the valve stem seals or cylinder head replacement as determined by inspection.

Remove the intake plenum and manifold.
Remove the rocker cover, rocker shaft and cam bearing cap assembly on the forward bank using the procedure in the appropriate technical service manual.
Remove one of the cam journal caps from the assembly and reinstall on the head. This will prevent the cam from possibly coming out of the journals when the engine is rotated later.
Check front bank cylinders in #4, #2, then #6 sequence.
NOTE: IF A VALVE GUIDE CAN BE MOVED WITH FINGER PRESSURE, REPLACE THE CYLINDER HEAD.

Remove the spark plug and apply compressed air to the cylinder to prevent valve dropping. Use special tool MD998772A to remove the intake and exhaust valve locks, the valve spring retainer, valve spring and valve spring seat.
Remove the valve stem seals.
Using the height gauge that is integrated into the Groove Cutter (Special tool MD998790), measure the distance between the top of the exhaust valve guide and the top of the valve guide boss on the cylinder head (refer to illustrations of Figure 1). If the distance is .335" (8.5mm) or less the cylinder head will have to be removed for repair, perform PROCEDURE B. If the distance is .335" (8.5mm) or more, perform PROCEDURE A.
Repeat steps 2 through 7 for the rear bank. Do the cylinders in #3, #1, and #5 sequence.
PROCEDURE A Snap Ring Installation and Valve Stem Seal Replacement (On the Vehicle)

Using the groove cutter (Special tool MD998790), make a groove in the exhaust valve guide (refer to Figure 2 and Figure 3 ).
Install the special tool on the exhaust valve guide.
Turn the tool clockwise until the force required to turn the tool suddenly decreases.
Remove the tool.
Using a magnet and shop towel, remove the cuttings from the cylinder head.
Install a snap ring in the groove cut in the exhaust valve guide (refer to Figure 4).
Check the exhaust valve guide height with the .453" (11.5mm) side of special tool MD998790 and a .040" (1mm) feeler gauge. If the measurement is .413 (10.5mm) or more (feeler gauge will not fit between special tool and top of valve guide) install the valve spring seat. Install all of the intake valve spring seats.
Install new valve stem seals on the intake and exhaust valve guides using special tool MD998729.
Reinstall the valve spring assemblies including the valve spring seats if not already installed step 4 of PROCEDURE A.
Return to step 4 of the PROCEDURE A and proceed to the next cylinder in sequence unless, all exhaust valve guide snap rings have been installed and all valve stem seals replaced on this head.
Reinstall the rocker shaft assembly, camshaft bearing caps, rocker cover and spark plugs. Return to step 8 of the REPAIR PROCEDURE unless this step completed the repair to both heads.
Using the procedures in the appropriate service manual, reassemble the engine.
PROCEDURE B Valve Guide Height Correction, Snap Ring Installation

Remove the cylinder head using the procedure in the appropriate service manual.
Remove all of the valve spring assemblies and valves. Mark the valves so they can be returned to their original position at reassembly.
Remove all of the valve stem seals.
Check the height on any exhaust valve guides not already checked to determine if height correction will be required on more than one guide.
Remove any carbon from the bottom of the exhaust valve guides that need to have their height corrected, especially the face that special tool MD998115 will contact.
Using special tool MD998115 and hammer, carefully drive the exhaust valve guides from the combustion chamber side to provide a valve guide height from the top of the guide to the top of the boss for the valve guide on the cylinder head of .453" (11.5mm). Check the distance using the height gauge that is integrated into the groove cutter (Special tool MD998790). Refer to Figure 1 and Figure 5. If the valve guide is driven up too far and the valve guide height exceeds .453" (11.5mm) use special tool MD998115 to drive the valve guide from the rocker shaft side of the head until the .453" (11.5mm) height is achieved.
Inspect the valve seats using the prussian blue procedure in the appropriate service manual.
Using the groove cutter (Special tool MD998790), make a groove on all of the exhaust valve guides (refer to Figure 2 and Figure 3).
Install the special tool on the exhaust valve guide.
Turn the tool clockwise until the force required to turn the tool suddenly decreases.
Remove the tool.
Use a magnet and shop towel or wash the cylinder head to remove the cuttings.
Install a snap ring on each exhaust valve guide (refer to Figure 4).
Check the exhaust valve guide height with the .453" (11.5mm) side of special tool MD998790 and a .040" (1mm) feeler gauge. If the measurement is .413 (10.5mm) or more (feeler gauge will not fit between special tool and top of valve guide) install the valve spring seat. Install all of the intake valve spring seats.
Install new valve stem seals on the intake and exhaust valve guides using special tool MD998729.
Reassemble the cylinder head and install using the procedure in the appropriate service manual. Return to step 8 of the REPAIR PROCEDURE unless this step completed the repair to both heads.
Using the procedures in the appropriate service manual, reassemble the engine.
POLICY:
Reimbursable within the provisions of the warranty.

TIME ALLOWANCE:
Labor Operation No.
Description
Time

09-35-01-92
Repair Valve Guides and Replace Seals, Both Heads on Vehicle
4.1 Hrs.

09-35-01-93
Repair Rear Head On Vehicle - Remove Front Head and repair or Replace Head as Required
6.0 Hrs.

09-35-01-94
Repair Front Head On Vehicle - Remove Rear Head and Repair or Replace Head as Required
6.2 Hrs.

09-35-01-95
Remove Both Heads and Repair or Replace Head as Required
6.4 Hrs.



FAILURE CODE:
Code
Description

70

Oil Consumption
 
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