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HT4100 4.1, 4.5, 4.9 Discussion, 4.5 distributer 180 out? in Cadillac Engine Technical Discussion; Yes I have checked those plug wires many times. We noticed the miss around the time I replaced badly rusted ...
  1. #31
    daniel58 is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: 4.5 distributer 180 out?

    Yes I have checked those plug wires many times. We noticed the miss around the time I replaced badly rusted fuel and brake lines running to the rear of the car, the miss would go away after it warmed up a bit. I assumed it was something simple like plugs or wires, but it just kept getting worse no matter what I did to it. So to make it clear it had a minor miss before we did the fuel/brake line work and at that time I replaced the plugs, NAPA gave me incorrect plugs and that is when the miss got worse. Replaced the incorrect plugs with the correct AC plugs and that did not help so then replaced the cap, rotor and wires and a lot more after that. You may have something there Drewsdeville we are not sure if it did run ok after the extensive fuel system work. New Bosch pump, pickup/sender assy (China), inline fuel filter, rear hoses and steel lines to the eng compartment hoses. Those fuel lines (3 different sizes) had to be fabricated of course with Dorman O ring type adaptors and crimp fittings to standard steel lines. I will check those lines again but at anyrate fuel pressure is 36-38 psi at the rail with no leaks.

  2. #32
    the recluse is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    Re: 4.5 distributer 180 out?

    One word: distributor.

    I had some of the same issues, replaced a lot of the same things, but it wasn't until I replaced the distributor itself did I solve most of the issues.

    As a side note, look into the wiring harnesses inside the distributor, the ones coming form the ICM around to the hall effect switch and so on, in mine I had to rewire some because of old, heated wiring.

    This issue is definitely electrical as you have carbon buildup developing. I had the same issue with carbon which turned out to be the injector. Injector issues can show up in various stages of the engine running, i.e. idle or even closed loop operation as opposed to highway speeds. Swap the injectors #5 and #7 and see if the carbon buildup moves to #7 cylinder; if so, the issue may be injectors still.

  3. #33
    daniel58 is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: 4.5 distributer 180 out?

    Well Recluse, the injectors are new but I am leaning towards this being an electrical issue as you suggest at this point. Tried another coil today just to eliminate that with no improvement. I plan to check some wiring yet and then see if I can find someone with an old school scope to check just what this ignition is actually doing.

  4. #34
    cadillac_al is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    Re: 4.5 distributer 180 out?

    I'm still stumped and it seems there is nothing left to check other than to redo something that has just recently been checked. I would be tempted to throw in the towel but I know you have spent too much $$$ to do that now.

  5. #35
    the recluse is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    Re: 4.5 distributer 180 out?

    I don't think coils, plugs, and wires. If your loading one cylinder over others, try that cylinder. I had the same problem. Read all about it here: http://www.cadillacforums.com/forums...f-up-eldo.html See if it helps.

  6. #36
    daniel58 is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: 4.5 distributer 180 out?

    Thanks guys for getting back to me, I checked out the link not sure if I understand it, need to drink a few beers on that one! But I am thinking that an inductive timing light or another spark plug plugged into the suspect cyl plug wire and grounded would show there is spark. Both of these tests show that #5 is getting a good spark. A stethoscope and noid light show that the (new) injectors are operating. Fuel pressure and compression are good. But I recently found that the #5 plug (3rd set of AC) is coked up with carbon after just a few miles. So with spark, compression and fuel it just doesn't make any sense. Timing? New timing set, it ran fine afterwards. Valve train? No noise and it does have good compression. That would be a last resort to pull the valve covers but I keep coming back to timing or the cam sensor. I think it was Recluse who said replacing the distributor was a fix for him and the cam sensor/hall effect sw is the only thing in this one that is not new. Either that or I am right back to my original question, 180 out. Anyone know offhand if the drill point mark on the distributor gear should point to #1 if so we have it backwards not that we haven't tried it both ways. You are right AL about the thought of throwing in the towel on this one but having too much invested to do so. I have even gone so far as to actually think of taking it to a Cadillac dealer!!! I can hear the service advisor now, yep you need a new engine that will run you oh... about $12,000 but we have a sweet running N* here for just a little more!

  7. #37
    cadillac_al is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    Re: 4.5 distributer 180 out?

    If you put another plug in the #5 cylinder, do you think it will still turn black? I wonder if there is such a thing as defective plugs. I have heard cases of spark plugs being tightened too much and cracking but I have never seen it personally.

    A lot of my usually smart motorcycle friends seem to be sold on these new E3 spark plugs. I'm not so easily sold on new gadgets and most of my usually smart motorcycle buddies aren't either, but they do seem to sold on these plugs and claim better mpg. I'm tempted to try a set in my bike since it is due for a set but I really don't see how a spark plug could make that much of a difference. Yours would be the perfect scenario to try a set and it would probably be cheaper than any other option.

    I have never looked closely at the Hall effect switch and I don't know if that has to be in a certain position or if being 180 out would have any effect on it. I do know that if the distributor itself is 180 out the engine will not run at all.

  8. #38
    the recluse is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    Re: 4.5 distributer 180 out?

    Quote Originally Posted by daniel58 View Post
    Both of these tests show that #5 is getting a good spark. A stethoscope and noid light show that the (new) injectors are operating. Fuel pressure and compression are good. But I recently found that the #5 plug (3rd set of AC) is coked up with carbon after just a few miles. So with spark, compression and fuel it just doesn't make any sense.
    That's what I was saying in the last link I showed you. My injectors WERE running, operating, squirting fuel, whatever it is they were supposed to do. The problem being was they were working TOO much. One injector flooded one cylinder so bad it just about hydrolocked it; thankfully the headbolts decided to strip out of the block and blow the headgasket (sarcasm) Like I said before, change #5 cylinder injector with #7 (easier switch and can be done in about 30 min) and see if the problem moves to that cylinder. At least then you can rule out the injector for sure.

    Now this:
    Quote Originally Posted by daniel58 View Post
    ...the cam sensor/hall effect sw is the only thing in this one that is not new.
    I did not know that part. That can lead to problems and not necessarily throw a code. I would try moving the injector first, then look into the hall effect switch.

  9. #39
    daniel58 is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: 4.5 distributer 180 out?

    Yes AL, I have run into defective new plugs, they get dropped or something before you get them. But this is the 3rd set (and they are nasty to change) in this car and #5 gets carboned up every time. Still waiting for the guy with the old school scope to get back to me, most shops even if they have one don't use it anymore it seems.

  10. #40
    daniel58 is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: 4.5 distributer 180 out?

    Recluse, you may have something there with the injectors. The new ones are a little higher cap 19# as opposed to the oem 18# and the first time around with the plugs we did not have the #5 black with carbon. The original injectors ohm out good so I may throw them back in just to see what happens or switch them around as suggested. I am going to wait a few more days for the scope guy to get back with me because I would like to eliminate ignition problems (if possible) first. Or perhaps I am a bit stubborn and just want those new injectors to work. We (Al, Recluse) are on the same track here, less fuel or more spark! I keep telling myself its just a machine, there has to be a mechanical fix there somewhere because it ran good before!

  11. #41
    daniel58 is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: 4.5 distributer 180 out?

    I pulled the distributor and ohmed out the wiring and checked the cam sensor/hall effect switch and found nothing. Rotated the gear once again on the dist shaft and put it back together... still the same rough idle, miss on accle, and lack of top end. I finally found someone with a scope to take a look at it, no word after a week so its not looking good at this point. If the scope guy can not fix it I will be going to the u pull it lot, distributor, ECM, A.I.R. valve are on my list... any other suggestions??? Other than giving up that is!

  12. #42
    the recluse is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    Re: 4.5 distributer 180 out?

    Here is the problem with just "ohming out" the switch; some things will ohm fine but it isn't until you have it running that things have a habit of not working. With the matter of electronics, you can only really know when you change them

  13. #43
    daniel58 is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: 4.5 distributer 180 out?

    Thank you Recluse for the info, I may yet have to get another distrubutor. That is a good point about things checking out fine and failing in use. Makes it very difficult to diagnose. I have a guy with a scope looking at the 90 now, been a week and no news. Its been very hot here so he may not be to eager to mess around with a hot eng, not going to pressure him lucky to find someone with a scope. Plan B is to get a distrubutor, ECM and other stuff from a junkyard, on the chance that there is a failure issue as you mention.

  14. #44
    daniel58 is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: 4.5 distributer 180 out?

    We finally found the problem with this 90 4.5. It was a bad O2 sensor compounded by 19# aftermarket injectors. The bad O2 sensor was a Bosch unit which ironicaly I installed as regular maintenance. New AC delco plugs, O2 sensor and installing the old injectors and the car runs fine now. I had to get help on this from an old friend who was a GM line tech, it took him a while but his diagnosis was spot on. No codes and the O2 sensor was working but it took more exp than I had with a scanner to figure it out. Also I find out after the fact that the Venom injectors I installed are notorious for being hard to control even with a racing computer setup which allows dialing them in. I think it was a Supra forum, they were saying the fuel delivery is all over the place up to a 100% difference from one injector to the next. So for those of you searching for cheap injectors I would avoid the Venom brand. I know others have said this as well, if you can afford it buy AC Delco OEM parts for your Cadillac. In this case it would have been cheaper actually to pay extra for AC Delco parts than "getting the good stuff" at NAPA!

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