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Thread: 1983 5.0 throttle body engine stalling issues, any ideas?

  1. #1
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    Default 1983 5.0 throttle body engine stalling issues, any ideas?

    Hello guys,

    Its been quite some time since I posted, since then I've added to the fleet with a 83 Cougar LS 5.0. Its up too 132,000 miles but really well cared for, single owner had it until I bought it in 2011.
    Its completely stock with the 5.0 throttle body setup,not my preference for sure.

    -Recently I've had problems with the engine dying for no apparent reason. It's happened at speeds of 65mph on the freeway and mostly 20-40mph when on city streets. It wont restart right away either. Typically I coast off to the side and it takes 5-10 minutes for it to start again. Ill try cranking it over 4 or 5 separate times and it if it doesn't work I let it sit a few minutes and try again. Needless to say, its a scary situation when it happen in a large city like I live in. I'm needing to use the car as my DD for a while since my other vehicle was totaled in an accident(drunk driver).
    Once it does restart it seems to run normal. My drive is only 12 miles one way too and from work so its not like the car is being run long hours before this happens.
    Any ideas would be greatly appreciated.

    thanks
    Dennis

  2. #2
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    I had a similar issue where my car would die like that. Let It sit, states and runs just fine. My issue was with my TFI module, or ignition control module. It has a couple names. But it's the thing mounted under and on the side of your distributor. Most of them fail because of being subjected to heat.
    1986 Ford Thunderchicken, 5.0 AOD w/ Shift kit, 352,XXX miles. 1-Family owned. Original engine+trans.
    8.8 Disc Rear w/ 3.73 Posi. CHE Control Arms. '04 Cobra brakes all around. 2000 Cobra R wheels. Tubular front LCA's. MM Steering Shaft. Unlocked Speedo, Lowering springs, Eibach sway bars front and rear. Ram air intake.

  3. #3
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    Weren't 83's a duraspark system? Or did they already have a tfi?
    Quote Originally Posted by jcassity
    I honestly dont think you could exceed the cost of a new car buy installing new *stock* parts everywhere in your coug our tbird. Its just plain impossible. You could revamp the entire drivetrain/engine/suspenstion and still come out ahead.
    Hooligans!
    1988 Crown Vic wagon. 120K California car. Wifes grocery getter. (junked)
    1987 Ford Thunderbird LX. 5.0. s.o., sn-95 t-5 and an f-150 clutch. Driven daily and going strong.
    1986 cougar.
    lilsammywasapunkrocker@yahoo.com

  4. #4
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    Ooops, think you're right haystack.
    1986 Ford Thunderchicken, 5.0 AOD w/ Shift kit, 352,XXX miles. 1-Family owned. Original engine+trans.
    8.8 Disc Rear w/ 3.73 Posi. CHE Control Arms. '04 Cobra brakes all around. 2000 Cobra R wheels. Tubular front LCA's. MM Steering Shaft. Unlocked Speedo, Lowering springs, Eibach sway bars front and rear. Ram air intake.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kylesburrell View Post
    Ooops, think you're right haystack.
    Yeah thats 1984 and newer from what I understand. I had read about that when googling the issue a while back.

    Could it be the fuel pump going bad?

  6. #6
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    Buy a cheap harbor freight fuel pressure tester. Take the rubber hose straight to the gauge and hook it to the outlet of the fuel filter. If its not around 40 psi, of start looking at fuel.
    Quote Originally Posted by jcassity
    I honestly dont think you could exceed the cost of a new car buy installing new *stock* parts everywhere in your coug our tbird. Its just plain impossible. You could revamp the entire drivetrain/engine/suspenstion and still come out ahead.
    Hooligans!
    1988 Crown Vic wagon. 120K California car. Wifes grocery getter. (junked)
    1987 Ford Thunderbird LX. 5.0. s.o., sn-95 t-5 and an f-150 clutch. Driven daily and going strong.
    1986 cougar.
    lilsammywasapunkrocker@yahoo.com

  7. #7
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    random things........ cause i have a lot of experience with all the various CFI's,,, but very little on durasparkII although i do i have some prints about it.

    i am going to go out on a limb and think "when stuff gets warm, stuff starts to fail".... so in random here goes............

    with a bone cold motor ,,
    -remove air cleaner
    -look down into the CFI
    -observe the position of the throttle plates (they should be nearly closed due to last time running.
    -manually move the gas pedal lever and allow it to come back to a resting position........
    -the throttle plates should be "more open" now than before.. ... this verifies that the automatic choke is set somewhat correctly(located on pass side)
    -if not, loose the three side mount screws and rotate the black plastic housing to just "barely" open the throttle plates.
    lock down the holding screws.
    -run car in driveway with some small weight on the gas pedal to make it run at around 1000rpm for about 15min
    -if it dies ....... scroll down
    -if it does not die then remove the small weight
    -if it dies........ scroll down
    -if it does not die, scroll down

    random things to check...........
    -turn car off and listen to the sounds from the coolant fill tank and radiator or hoses.
    -verify at night or a dark situation that your spark is "Blueish white",, orange is bad.
    -you might be one of the few with a pump in the fuel tank and a pump on the bottom of the cars frame (two pumps)... if yes.....
    then pm or get softtouch (member) on this thread because he has this particular design memorized!
    -after car is hot, on the CFI driver side there is a vac actuated idle plunger.. with the car at idle, is the plunger touching / pushing the lever?
    -if yes then move on....
    -if no then this item came "before" the idle control motor assy and after engine/auto choke pull off is rather hot, your throttle plates should be returning to a position that is allowing the plates to stay slightly open.


    -your cfi system has a test port on top of the fuel rail on the driver side with your blue top injectors.
    with warm motor test fuel pres there and look for 40lbs at idle.
    -shop manual says to add extender hose to duct tape guage to windshield, with tester hooked up observe the fuel presure in between shifts. The psi can not go below 25psi or else the pump or (pumps) are on thier way out.

    I believe your EECIII system has a crank position sensor,,,
    If you have a module mounted to your distributor with a six wire connector then you are not Duraspark/EECIII.... post back what your system is.

    check rock auto to price out a voltage regulator / ignition module,,,, i believe yours is mounted on the pass side strut tower... this item does go bad and from the mileage you say, its likely due.

    important.......
    on the rear of the cfi driver side there is a main vac port (tiny gold 2'' long fitting).
    you lift the CFI off the engine, and flip the CFI over.. ... under the CFI chip away at all the carbon deposits that dont below!!!!


    FYI,,
    your fuel presure regulator on top of the CFI from the factory is adjustable.,,, unless its been replaced with AFTER MARKET.
    if there is a freeze plug on the top center, then simply use a tiny drill bit then a self tapper screw and pop out that freeze plug to reveal an allen wrench adjustment.
    If your FPR has a plastic plug, then its been replaced,,,, and you can also assume the CFI has been removed.

    there are a lot of mechanical gizmos and gadgets around the EECIII CFI system (as a part of the CFI) and all those linkages and such that track and follow your gas pedal and or follow a "warmed up engine" and provide a job need looked at.


    my gut feeling is telling me that its either your ignition module or cam sensor and after engine is warm, something is intermittent.

    i cant remember if the EEC III system had actual points down in the distributor or not... but if thats bad, usually you would have troubles without a hot motor.


    call if you want.... scott 304 772 3411

    sorry so random.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Haystack View Post
    Buy a cheap harbor freight fuel pressure tester. Take the rubber hose straight to the gauge and hook it to the outlet of the fuel filter. If its not around 40 psi, of start looking at fuel.
    there's a shrader valve on top of the CFI driver side.

    also,, to get rid of that "hesitation off the line, remove injectors and start a sheet metal screw into the top of the injector,,, pull with pliers to remove and dispose of the injector screens.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jcassity View Post
    there's a shrader valve on top of the CFI driver side.

    also,, to get rid of that "hesitation off the line, remove injectors and start a sheet metal screw into the top of the injector,,, pull with pliers to remove and dispose of the injector screens.

    Scott,
    Thanks for all the suggestions. Ive tried to cross a few things off from your list. I'm not very mechanically inclined unfortunately. I can handle some basics but this may be over my head with how many different scenarios there are.
    Below are a few pictures I took. From what I understand its the Duraspark setup, no module.
    On the last picture I posted, is that Yellow cap the shrader valve you are referring too earlier to test the fuel pressure?


    IMG_1761.jpg
    IMG_1763.jpg
    IMG_1764.jpg

  10. #10
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    -When I took off the air filter and manually moved the gas line the throttle plates went back to the same position as when I started which seems to be all the way closed.

    -I didnt have any luck with the car shutting off when it sat and idled at around 1000rpm for 15 min.
    -I can hear the fuel pump humming in the tank when the key is turned on, it does then turn off like normal a few seconds later.

    -The water pump, belts and hoses were all replaced a year ago, since then the car has only been driven about 1,000 miles.

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