97 northstar engine miss
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Northstar Engines and System Technical Discussion Discussion, 97 northstar engine miss in Cadillac Engine Technical Discussion; Now that it is getting cold in NY my 97 deville has started an engine skip when I cold start ...
  1. #1
    fullserviceman is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Question 97 northstar engine miss

    Now that it is getting cold in NY my 97 deville has started an engine skip when I cold start it until it warms up an/or I restart it. I reset the codes and haven't got any current codes. I also can't run anything less that 91-93 octane fuel without it spark knocking. I had the b/s valvoline fuel system service and fuel filter done a week or 2 ago and thats about the time the rough idle started.

    The car has now 120,000 mi. on it
    I bought it with 100,000 and it had a engine miss before I picked up.
    The dealer put 4 frontplugs in (cheapo autolite) and new wires. Should I just take it to cadillac and have a real tuneup with the plat plus plugs? Could this be my trouble? How hard are the rear plugs to get to. In my experience the cadillac dealers do sh$t work with cheap parts for high prices.

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  3. #2
    mcowden is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    Re: 97 northstar engine miss

    Quote Originally Posted by fullserviceman
    Now that it is getting cold in NY my 97 deville has started an engine skip when I cold start it until it warms up an/or I restart it. I reset the codes and haven't got any current codes. I also can't run anything less that 91-93 octane fuel without it spark knocking. I had the b/s valvoline fuel system service and fuel filter done a week or 2 ago and thats about the time the rough idle started.

    The car has now 120,000 mi. on it
    I bought it with 100,000 and it had a engine miss before I picked up.
    The dealer put 4 frontplugs in (cheapo autolite) and new wires. Should I just take it to cadillac and have a real tuneup with the plat plus plugs? Could this be my trouble? How hard are the rear plugs to get to. In my experience the cadillac dealers do sh$t work with cheap parts for high prices.
    Replace the plugs and wires with AC-Delco wireset 748J and AC-Delco 41-950 plugs. If you do it yourself, you can get the parts for decent prices at www.gmpartsdirect.com or www.rockauto.com. The rear plugs are not that difficult to access. You don't even need any tools different from what you use for the front plugs. You can dismount the coils with four bolts and that will give you a little better access, but they are still accessible with the coils in place.

    If you take it to a dealership, you may have to specify that they use those specific parts, and they will charge you a bundle for it, but if you use those parts, you will be using what GM currently recommends as OEM replacement equipment for the car. Anything else is untested and unknown.
    Mike

  4. #3
    Eldyfig's Avatar
    Eldyfig is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    Re: 97 northstar engine miss

    A dealer that puts unrecommended plugs in and then only puts the front four in...that shows their workmanship. Never go there again.

    Get the delcos in there like Mike said. It isn't hard to do, won't take much time.

  5. #4
    denscor is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: 97 northstar engine miss

    Does the north * do well with NGK? I use them in all my car they burn hotter!

  6. #5
    Eldyfig's Avatar
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    Re: 97 northstar engine miss

    I have heard of a couple others that use them, but haven't heard results. Are the ground electrode and the center electrode both platinum on the NGK?

  7. #6
    denscor is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: 97 northstar engine miss

    You can get the NGK in platinum but the standard plug the v grove works the best they are about 2 dollars per plug.My supercharged vette runs great on them. I will try them and post the results.

  8. #7
    fullserviceman is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: 97 northstar engine miss

    mind you the dealer i bought this car from was selling if off via Ebay and I think I stole it for $3000 with 90,000 miles on it. He was just a half ass that that wanted to meet bare minimum to get the car running. I will get the Gm platinums in it this week. The wires seem fine. Twice now the security system will not let me start the car on the first try, why I dont know??

  9. #8
    mikedean is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: 97 northstar engine miss

    I had a problem with the theft system on my car. Dealer wanted to replace the whole ignition in the steering wheel. After looking everywhere for an answer someone suggested spraying the key with WD40 and pushing it in and out of the lock, then cycling the ignition. It worked perfectly I have not had a problem with it since. Also, I think that feature can be disabled by a car stereo shop, just have a remote start put in.

    BTW i will be replacing my plugs and wires this weekend, the dealer wanted 450 for the wires and 120 for the plugs.

    My 98 Deville is having missing problems, gave a P0300 code and after i cleared it has not came back, car still missing though. Will do the spark in the dark test tonight, but from what i have been hearing on here, the spark plug cables are prone to failure.

    The symptoms are when in drive and stopped engine will idle at 650 and every few seconds feels like a miss and drops to 575.
    Sometimes has a jerk during light acceleration at all speeds, goes away when you give it more gas or let off.

  10. #9
    keep it fresh's Avatar
    keep it fresh is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: 97 northstar engine miss

    sounds like a fuel problem.....

  11. #10
    mikedean is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: 97 northstar engine miss

    Well when i got home today i popped the hood and sure enough, LIGHT SHOW. There is at least 3 places the plug cables are arcing in the area of the coils (but not on them). I am ordering a new set of cables and plugs from rockauto tonight...

  12. #11
    Eldyfig's Avatar
    Eldyfig is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    Re: 97 northstar engine miss

    That was an easy enough test.

  13. #12
    fullserviceman is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: 97 northstar engine miss

    $450 for wires? wtf?

  14. #13
    mikedean is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: 97 northstar engine miss

    Ya, I live in Everett and the closet caCaddy dealer is 20 miles away, so i thought I would call the Chev dealer and see what they would charge just to change the wires. They said $185 for the wires and $265 for labor. I ordered the acdelco set off of the internet and they are out for delivery so i should be able to install them today.

  15. #14
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    powerglide is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    Re: 97 northstar engine miss

    Quote Originally Posted by mcowden
    Replace the plugs and wires with AC-Delco wireset 748J and AC-Delco 41-950 plugs. If you do it yourself, you can get the parts for decent prices at www.gmpartsdirect.com or www.rockauto.com. The rear plugs are not that difficult to access. You don't even need any tools different from what you use for the front plugs. You can dismount the coils with four bolts and that will give you a little better access, but they are still accessible with the coils in place.
    If you take it to a dealership, you may have to specify that they use those specific parts, and they will charge you a bundle for it, but if you use those parts, you will be using what GM currently recommends as OEM replacement equipment for the car. Anything else is untested and unknown.
    Bingo! That the thing to do first.
    Even if doesnt cure it, thats step one. (forget paying $500) to the dealer its 150$ easy DIY that I performed curbside in NYC in the middle of the winter. (that was my first DIY job btw.....theres a full write-up on here, if you do a search)
    A sporatic miss wont trigger the P0300 DTC code, unless its sustained.
    And even then, all that means is that its missing.
    After the plug and wire change I would next suspsect the ignition coils. They are very easy to diagnose and replace. (again I did this in the autozone parking lot in 15 minutes)
    But becuase of what you said, that its happened after the fuel rail service I am willing to bet its the wires. When they moved it around to access the rails they broke them. Its very common. The wires are very brittle inside (especially as they age)
    Good luck and tell us what happens.

  16. #15
    mikedean is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: 97 northstar engine miss

    Changed plug wires and plugs in under 2 hours, this was a lot easier than i expected. One of the easiest I have ever done. Fired her up and made a 20 mile trip with no problems. Seems to have fixed the problem.

    I am not sure what the plugs are supposed to look like after 87000 miles but they on any other car i would say they needed to be changed
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