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Old 11-02-2004, 02:56 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Car is running like shit (rich at times for no reason) HELP!

I am having some issues with my car and I can't seem to figure out what the problem is. Please read both of the posts I made yesterday and today belowe and see if you can figure out what the problem could be?? I'm lost!


11-1-04

Quote:
This just started happening yesterday. The car will run fine in the higher rpm range (3500+) but between 2-3k the car "feels" like its running extremely rich (the car sputters really bad and you can smell gas) Its really weird because it doesnt do it all the time, but when it does it sputters really bad until you get past 3-3500 rpm, then its runs ok???? The only issue the car has is that I DESTROYED my header on a man hole and its dented pretty badly. However, its been like that for about 1-2 months and the car has never done this. The only other thing I can think of is that it started after I got gas yesterday, but if it were bad gas, why would it only act like that in the low rpms?
My mods are Skunk2 stage 1 cams, gears, springs, etc...I'm running a Kenji chipped p-28 tuned by p1auto with a vafc. The car has been tuned and running excelent for over a year now, and non of the settings have been touched, so this is weirding me out.

I have not had a chance to pull any plugs, I also just ordered a new header from p1 and plan to have him look at the car after I put it on and put it on the dyno if necessesary to figure out the problem.

From what I explained can any of you guys think of what it could be?

Cliffs notes:

-Car running like its running really rich (sputtering badly) from 2-3500k rpm (but runs ok in the higher revs)

-only known mechanical issue is a dented (badly) header but its been like that for almost 2 months with no issues besides the car having lost some top end power)

-mods are stage 1 cams, p-28 chipped tuned with vafc (been tuned for over a year no problems)

Edit: Fuel preasure looks good according to the trusty gauge under the hood

11-2-04

Quote:
The problem seems to be getting worse and worse and it really makes no sense to me. 7/10 times the car starts normally and runs normal until about 10 minutes of driving. After that the car starts to idle like shit and you can smell gas. If you try to drive it from a stop the car shutters like a choked out lawn mower until you get above ~3500 rpm, then it pulls out of it. I know the header is crushed badly (just ordered the new one) but its been like that for ~2 months. If its the 02 then why am I not throwing a code and why is it only doing it sometimes and in the lower rpms?

Im gonna replace the plugs, but again even if the plugs are fouled, why would the car not act like this all the time and only when it's been running for some time?

Basically the car is in some way "flooding" itself out or out of know where running very rich (i think) in the lower rpms and idle after its been running for about 10 minutes)

Someone here please add something cause I'm lost

Just pulled the plugs:

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Old 11-02-2004, 03:46 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Runs fine till about ten minutes after start up? Replaced 02 sensors lately? Your car will start up in an open loop mode untill the engine is warmed up and the PCM has had time to read all the data coming from all your sensors. Once it has warmed up, the 02 sensors start reading gasses from your exhaust.
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Old 11-02-2004, 04:12 PM   #3 (permalink)
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So your guessing its an 02 sensor? I thought the same thing but why would I not throw a code? Only think I can think of is that because I have a chipped p-28 that it would cause it to not throw a code, although my buddy with a simular setup (kenji chipped p-28) threw a code when he burnt his 02???
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Old 11-02-2004, 06:27 PM   #4 (permalink)
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im not going to give answers on this but i will say according to my wideband i am running in closed loop within a minute and a half of starting the car. also keep in mind your ecu's changeover point to open loop mode. if the sputtering etc is happening above that transition throttle percentage to open loop then an o2 sensor will most likely be ruled out

personally if it were me i would look for items that could cause a spontaneous problem like this, loose or slipping items like cam gears or ignition items stuck injectors etc.... im not saying thats what it is but thats where i would start looking.
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Old 11-02-2004, 06:35 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rick V
im not going to give answers on this but i will say according to my wideband i am running in closed loop within a minute and a half of starting the car. also keep in mind your ecu's changeover point to open loop mode. if the sputtering etc is happening above that transition throttle percentage to open loop then an o2 sensor will most likely be ruled out

personally if it were me i would look for items that could cause a spontaneous problem like this, loose or slipping items like cam gears or ignition items stuck injectors etc.... im not saying thats what it is but thats where i would start looking.

I agree but what doesn't make sense is that the problem goes away after I turn the car off and does not return until after ~10 minutes of driving. If it were a slipping cam gear or something of that nature wouldn't it cause the car to run like that all the time after the slip? Its not like the gear can slip back to place after its fallen out.

As far as my ecu, i have to contact Kenji (the one who programmed the chip I run) because I have no idea if it'll even throw an 02 code or anything else he has programmed in?
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Old 11-02-2004, 06:51 PM   #6 (permalink)
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A faulty O2 sensor won't always throw a code. A sticky injector is another possibility like Rick said. Get a mechanics stethoscope and listen to see if one injector sounds different from another. More than likely you have some sort of ignition problem. Check your plug wires, cap (for cracks), rotor and coil.
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Old 11-02-2004, 06:52 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
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I agree but what doesn't make sense is that the problem goes away after I turn the car off and does not return until after ~10 minutes of driving. If it were a slipping cam gear or something of that nature wouldn't it cause the car to run like that all the time after the slip? Its not like the gear can slip back to place after its fallen out.

As far as my ecu, i have to contact Kenji (the one who programmed the chip I run) because I have no idea if it'll even throw an 02 code or anything else he has programmed in?
i agree about the cam gear too, it would most likely not be that. i was just trying to give an example and not really thinking about it. another point of interest is and example from my car. my oxygen sensor is shitting the bed on me. at idle (when it idles) my a/f ratio fluctuates between 12.9 and 13.3. it should be bouncing around 14.7. and even though im running that rich on a stock obd2 ecu it doesnt throw a code. food for thought ya know.

also, i dont think the kenji ecu's disable closed loop. so if your in light throttle when this happens it vary well maybe an oxygen sensor. who knows, when you smashed your header a chunk of metal or carbon might have busted off and fouled the sensor just enough that it takes that long (10 minutes) to take effect. ive seen wierder things happen.

wierd story time. friend had an old 70's bmw. well from never keeping the tank full of gas it developed rust. slowly but surely the car started running like ass (through all rpm) untill it just wouldnt run at all. little chips of rust were breaking off and clogging up the sock on the fuel pump starving the car of gas.
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Old 11-02-2004, 06:57 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Rick V
i agree about the cam gear too, it would most likely not be that. i was just trying to give an example and not really thinking about it. another point of interest is and example from my car. my oxygen sensor is shitting the bed on me. at idle (when it idles) my a/f ratio fluctuates between 12.9 and 13.3. it should be bouncing around 14.7. and even though im running that rich on a stock obd2 ecu it doesnt throw a code. food for thought ya know.

also, i dont think the kenji ecu's disable closed loop. so if your in light throttle when this happens it vary well maybe an oxygen sensor. who knows, when you smashed your header a chunk of metal or carbon might have busted off and fouled the sensor just enough that it takes that long (10 minutes) to take effect. ive seen wierder things happen.

wierd story time. friend had an old 70's bmw. well from never keeping the tank full of gas it developed rust. slowly but surely the car started running like ass (through all rpm) untill it just wouldnt run at all. little chips of rust were breaking off and clogging up the sock on the fuel pump starving the car of gas.
Not that weird at all. I had a '77 K5, rebuild 350 with mild mods. One day it started running like crap. It would idle perfect and rev fine until you put in under a load. I rebuilt the carb, new fuel pump, searched high and low for vac leak. Randomly replaced the fuel filter one day and problem solve. Rust from the gas tank clogged the filter sometimes.
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Old 11-02-2004, 07:10 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by spray004
A faulty O2 sensor won't always throw a code. A sticky injector is another possibility like Rick said. Get a mechanics stethoscope and listen to see if one injector sounds different from another. More than likely you have some sort of ignition problem. Check your plug wires, cap (for cracks), rotor and coil.
It does seem like a ignition problem of some sort but what doesn't make sense to me is that if it were a say a bad cap or rotor why would it only act up at certain times


Quote:
Originally Posted by Rick V
i agree about the cam gear too, it would most likely not be that. i was just trying to give an example and not really thinking about it. another point of interest is and example from my car. my oxygen sensor is shitting the bed on me. at idle (when it idles) my a/f ratio fluctuates between 12.9 and 13.3. it should be bouncing around 14.7. and even though im running that rich on a stock obd2 ecu it doesnt throw a code. food for thought ya know.

also, i dont think the kenji ecu's disable closed loop. so if your in light throttle when this happens it vary well maybe an oxygen sensor. who knows, when you smashed your header a chunk of metal or carbon might have busted off and fouled the sensor just enough that it takes that long (10 minutes) to take effect. ive seen wierder things happen.

wierd story time. friend had an old 70's bmw. well from never keeping the tank full of gas it developed rust. slowly but surely the car started running like ass (through all rpm) untill it just wouldnt run at all. little chips of rust were breaking off and clogging up the sock on the fuel pump starving the car of gas.
Just from pure process of elimination I am leaning towards the 02 jus because like everyone has already said, if it were a faulty part such as a cam gear or dist cap (although I am replacing it anyway) the problem would occur all the time not just sometimes (after 10 or so minutes) The only other thing is maybe the ecu took a shit???

I have yet another question...Sinse I had obd-2 I had 2 02 sensors, after the converstion and the high flow cat install I removed one of the 02 sensors. Can I use the 02 sensor that was in my cat (the secondary) in place of the one in the header (primary) or is one a 4-wire and the other a 2 wire?
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