chugging and backfiring intermittently. No codes
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HT4100 4.1, 4.5, 4.9 Discussion, chugging and backfiring intermittently. No codes in Cadillac Engine Technical Discussion; Lately I've been dealing with an intermittent chug and backfire. It only does this when accelerating. There are no engine ...
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    red_ghost is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    chugging and backfiring intermittently. No codes

    Lately I've been dealing with an intermittent chug and backfire. It only does this when accelerating. There are no engine codes being displayed.

    The ignition module, cap, rotor, wires, plugs, o2 sensor, oil pressure sensor, tps, isc motor are all about a year old. I tried a new fuel filter. The fuel pump and cat converter are about 4 years old.

    I brought it to a local mechanic, and he couldn't recreate teh problem. This problem is really intermittent, as it will do it one day, and then not the next. It does not matter how hot the engine is when it does it. sometimes it will do it right away after its turned on, sometimes not for an hour.

    Gas tank level does not seem to matter. It does it regardless of how full or empty it is.

    My rear exhaust pipe was dented in right below the rear suspension, and last night when it backfired it blew a hole in the pipe right there.

    any ideas?

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    cadillac_al is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    Re: chugging and backfiring intermittently. No codes

    When an engine has a real backfire that sounds like a rifle or blows up the muffler, it is caused my loss of spark for a short period of time. When everything is new then it is hard to know where to start. My process of elimination would go like this: The Hall effect/cam sensor would throw a code if the signal was intermittent. I have never seen an ignition module work intermittently, they either pass or fail. I would start looking at the easy stuff. Does the cap and rotor look ok? any signs of arcing? Are the plug wires AC Delco? very very few other brands are worth putting on. What do the spark plugs look like? Are they all clean or is there a couple black ones? I'm not a big fan of .060 plug gaps and somebody here has made the recommendation of a spark plug that has a .045 gap. I didn't do that with mine because I didn't know about it at the time but I tightened my gap up to .050 or .055. Are you having any problems with the dash lights while this is happening? That would indicate a more overall electrical failure.

    A lot of people complain of misfires but when you have a real backfire then you have a real problem that needs to be fixed. Good luck.

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    red_ghost is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: chugging and backfiring intermittently. No codes

    plug wires are accel. cap and rotor are summit. I have had an intermittent ignition module before; but this one is brand new. checked the plugs and they look fine. the plugs are bosch platinum 4. There are no dash light problems.

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    Re: chugging and backfiring intermittently. No codes

    As far as codes go, most of them have a time limit that must be reached before they will set. For example, the cam sensor must be out for 5 consecutive seconds to set a code. And some require the issue to be present for a certain number of ignition cycles. I would check the 5way distributor connector and all the connections inside the distributor for continuity. The heavy red wire to the coil may be loose also. Like Al said, something is killing the whole spark process completely for a split second or two....

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    red_ghost is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: chugging and backfiring intermittently. No codes

    My ignition coil is old... I will try changing that first. Probably use an accel super coil...

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    Re: chugging and backfiring intermittently. No codes

    It really sounds like an intermittent connection somewhere rather than a bum part. Couldnt hurt to throw a new one in there though. I have that same coil - works just fine.

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    red_ghost is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: chugging and backfiring intermittently. No codes

    I will check the internals and see if the ignition module is loose, or any of the wires are loose.

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    red_ghost is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: chugging and backfiring intermittently. No codes

    I'll have to dig into it tonight. getting a whole new cat back system as we speak. im in the process of moving, so funds are alittle tight right now. Just having them throw a glasspack on for a muffler.

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    cadillac_al is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    Re: chugging and backfiring intermittently. No codes

    Well, I have torture tested Accel wires on my mud bog truck and they can be amazing; I would rule those out. The plugs look clean so I would rule those out too. A new coil isn't a bad idea and cheap enough. If it's an electrical connection somewhere that could be tough to find; could even be the key switch. You don't have a 3 pound key ring do ya? I would think a bad key switch would affect the dash lights though. At least you won't blow up a glasspack muffler. I would think if this happens at night and the dash lights are not affected, then the problem should be limited to the disrtibutor itself.

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    red_ghost is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: chugging and backfiring intermittently. No codes

    I do have heavy key ring (roughly 15 keys). But like I said, there were no ODBI codes showing up on the climate control or on my code reader.

    I was wondering if it was fuel related? Maybe the pump is going bad? On the way to the exhaust shop it didnt backfire but it stuttered really slightly multiple times. The pickup coil is old too though... i was hesitating on changing that as it looks like a pain in the butt

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    Re: chugging and backfiring intermittently. No codes

    Check the resistance of it: (500-1500ohms OK)

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    red_ghost is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: chugging and backfiring intermittently. No codes

    Last night I changed the ignition coil. The old one was rusted on the bottom where the spring touches it, so I'm assuming thats what did it. I drove the car both gently and hard; and it seemed fine. I thought i might have stuttered once, but that may have been the transmission shifting and trying to figure out wtf I wanted the car to do. Drove about 50 miles and it seemed fine. I am also considering replacing the bosch platinum plugs I put in last year with AC Delco Platinum. Seems like other people had problems with these plugs.

    Also they didn't put in a glasspack, they just used my existing flowmaster 50 series delta flow. Also there is one code I am getting now: E91. That one has been on and off for the past 2 years. Probably should do something about it. I'll look it up in my fsm as soon as I'm done moving.

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    red_ghost is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: chugging and backfiring intermittently. No codes

    Well, it looks like it wasn't the ignition coil. On my lunch break it did it again. I removed plugs 1 and 7 and checked them. They looked fine. I checked the connections in the distributor and the connections were all tight, including the ignition module connections. All the spark plug wires are nice and tight on the plugs and on the cap. Again, no codes besides the one above.

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    Re: chugging and backfiring intermittently. No codes

    That E091 is a transaxle range switch problem. If you have your car in any other gear other than "park" or "neutral" the engine will not start, no brainer; but if this switch is shorting out inside, it may cause the engine to either stumble or stop.

    Not certain, but it may be worth looking into as it can't be that expensive to replace.

    My .02 cents

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    red_ghost is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: chugging and backfiring intermittently. No codes

    started doing it on the highway. when i got home, i put it in park and stepped on and off the gas and it didnt do it. then i put it in reverse, and it sputtered and stalled. still no engine light. this time it gave the code e31 though. is this just from stalling, or maybe the cause of the problem? seems its happening more frequently now though.

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