Distributor issue - 1991 4.9
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Cadillac Seville / Cadillac Eldorado Forum Discussion, Distributor issue - 1991 4.9 in Past Cadillac Vehicle Discussion; The distributor (1991 Seville 4.9) has needed replacing for awhile, said my parts guy, and about ten days ago the ...
  1. #1
    unclebig is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Distributor issue - 1991 4.9

    The distributor (1991 Seville 4.9) has needed replacing for awhile, said my parts guy, and about ten days ago the engine started dying at low rpm usually when the foot is off the gas pedal. So I got the distr parts, asked a neighborhood shop owner about changing it, but he backed out on me after he had had the car for 3 hours, because he wanted me to get a distr with a new distr harness. I was in a pinch with July 4 the next day and with me needing to be out of town, so I attempted to replace everything in exactly the same position. Great idea, except I realized that the distr hold-down nut was not tight and the distr was not positioned as the diagram showed it should be, which made me think he had actually taken the distr out and looked at the harness, and then put it all back together, possibly so that it would look like it was never out to avoid any finger pointing between he and I.

    Parts guy said to find "compression" in #1 by removing the plug, holding thumb over the hole and bumping the switch until I felt the air push. Then line up the distr button with where the #1 wire position on the cap is, and reassemble. This is 50/50 chance that the "push of air" was on compression, but if it won't start, I would pull the distr up a little enough to turn the gear 180 degrees. Then reassemble.I did both ways, and can crank, but not fire. I assume it will need to go to another shop, with better talent.

    Any advice besides the above ? Thanks

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    basscatt's Avatar
    basscatt is offline Cadillac Owners 10000+ Posts
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    Re: Distributor issue

    Quote Originally Posted by unclebig View Post
    The distributor (1991 Seville 4.9) has needed replacing for awhile, said my parts guy, and about ten days ago the engine started dying at low rpm usually when the foot is off the gas pedal. So I got the distr parts, asked a neighborhood shop owner about changing it, but he backed out on me after he had had the car for 3 hours, because he wanted me to get a distr with a new distr harness. I was in a pinch with July 4 the next day and with me needing to be out of town, so I attempted to replace everything in exactly the same position. Great idea, except I realized that the distr hold-down nut was not tight and the distr was not positioned as the diagram showed it should be, which made me think he had actually taken the distr out and looked at the harness, and then put it all back together, possibly so that it would look like it was never out to avoid any finger pointing between he and I.

    Parts guy said to find "compression" in #1 by removing the plug, holding thumb over the hole and bumping the switch until I felt the air push. Then line up the distr button with where the #1 wire position on the cap is, and reassemble. This is 50/50 chance that the "push of air" was on compression, but if it won't start, I would pull the distr up a little enough to turn the gear 180 degrees. Then reassemble.I did both ways, and can crank, but not fire. I assume it will need to go to another shop, with better talent.

    Any advice besides the above ? Thanks
    ================================
    after you get the distributor back in -
    and ignition timing set properly -

    check the ISC - Idle Speed Control motor -
    a more likely cause for dying at low rpm -

  4. #3
    unclebig is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: Distributor issue

    Thanks, I am going to take my business trip, and get out of panic mode, and follow your advice on check timing....earlier I had thought about taking it to Pep Boys shop tomorrow because they are only ones open on Sunday...but their shop people said the "4.9 is bad about 'time jumping'. " My wife has had the car for eight years (39,000 to now 83,000). We have had it in various shops for various work (not distr), and have looked at this forum for several years, and I do not recall anyone saying that the 4.9 is bad about jumping time (is it a belt or chain ?) Do you think he was just prepping me for a big bill ?? I really do not like techs who try this, try that, and replace this or that, and then finally they find the real trouble, and expect one to pay for all the un-necessary sensors, etc.

    Is he correct about the time jumping reputation or is that BS ?

  5. #4
    basscatt's Avatar
    basscatt is offline Cadillac Owners 10000+ Posts
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    Re: Distributor issue

    Quote Originally Posted by unclebig View Post
    Thanks, I am going to take my business trip, and get out of panic mode, and follow your advice on check timing....earlier I had thought about taking it to Pep Boys shop tomorrow because they are only ones open on Sunday...but their shop people said the "4.9 is bad about 'time jumping'. " My wife has had the car for eight years (39,000 to now 83,000). We have had it in various shops for various work (not distr), and have looked at this forum for several years, and I do not recall anyone saying that the 4.9 is bad about jumping time (is it a belt or chain ?) Do you think he was just prepping me for a big bill ?? I really do not like techs who try this, try that, and replace this or that, and then finally they find the real trouble, and expect one to pay for all the un-necessary sensors, etc.

    Is he correct about the time jumping reputation or is that BS ?
    =====================

    is it a belt or chain

    chain -
    Is he correct about the time jumping reputation or is that BS ?
    at 80K miles - the chain is fine - it's BS -

    find yourself a locally owned ma&pop shop -

    Do you think he was just prepping me for a big bill
    or getting you ready for "sorry - don't know WHAT the problem could be"

  6. #5
    unclebig is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: Distributor issue

    Thanks all: I got advice on a M&P shop and will call them Monday.

  7. #6
    Ranger's Avatar
    Ranger is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: Distributor issue

    Quote Originally Posted by unclebig View Post
    Is he correct about the time jumping reputation or is that BS ?
    He speaks with forked tongue.

    So what's the problem? You replaced the distributor and can't get it back in time?

  8. #7
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    cctgene is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: Distributor issue - 1991 4.9

    Don’t know if the following will proved to be of any value, but it’s the procedure for resetting the distributor on a 4.9 engine if the correct position was lost:


    1. Remove the No.1 spark plug
    2. Place finger over No.1 spark plug hole and crank engine slowly until compression is felt
    3. Align timing mark on pulley to ‘0’ on engine timing indicator
    4. Turn rotor to point between No.1 and No.8 spark plug towers on distributor cap
    5. Install distributor and connect ignition feed wire
    6. Install distributor cap and spark plug wires
    7. Check engine timing


    This should get your timing close enough were the engine will run. You will of course still have to set the base timing after that.

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