Engine - intermittent sputter, lasts around 15 seconds | Ford Escort Owners Association (FEOA)
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Engine intermittent sputter, lasts around 15 seconds

Discussion in '2nd Gen 1991-1996 1.9L SOHC' started by axa, Oct 14, 2020.

  1. axa

    axa FEOA Member

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    1996 ford 1.9 lx hatchback 150k miles.

    Ok Gang, please help me diagnose an intermittent sputter, now there are at least a few other threads i found searching, and the obvious culprits being plugs, wires, ignition pack....

    I am getting an intermittent sputter, it lasts for about 15 seconds.
    First time i noticed it, i happened to be driving around
    with an ODB2 scanner connected so checking i see it threw a p03xx if i recall correctly.
    Weeks later i went for a drive today and it happened twice...

    Ultimately the question is what usually causes intermittent sputter.


    Wires and ignition pack are original. i cant recall when I changed the plugs, but i when i did they were Bosch platinum plus HR9HP0, perhaps they have 60k but 10 years on them, i understand 100k is not unusual.

    pulling the plugs they appeared quite normal. The gap was a bit out on 2 of 4, nothing nuts.

    pulling the wires, i measured:
    - 7.8K ohms on #1 it being the longest
    - 6.8K ohms on #2 it being the second longest
    -6.0K ohms on #3, the third longest
    and 5.8K on #4, the shortest
    This seems pretty normal to me due to the variable length, but im not sure.
    And twisting and turning the ends thoroughly didnt prove to show any faults in continuity.

    No cuts cracks, they look decent.


    So the question would be how can i test the coil pack?
    I tried to follow this generic video:


    But every measurement i took was infinite, i got no measure testing any combination from wire end to wire end, pin to pin, wire end to pin, pin to wire end.... Couldn't get any info.


    Honestly after 24.5 years one might say just change that crap, but at this point, its hard to keep throwing money at this old thing. Just want to do what is necessary or makes actual sense
    thanks
    Any suggestion would be appreciated.
  2. Valdres Rose

    Valdres Rose FEOA Member

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    Have you actually isolated the problem to electrical? Could it possibly be caused by fuel - air intake obstruction?
  3. axa

    axa FEOA Member

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    i haven't, but it occurs to me if it was an air/fuel delivery problem failures would be more consistent, no?

    this literally happens once several weeks ago, then twice today. 15 second no more.

    and for one of them i was driving on the highway so i tried cutting the ignition and jumping back on which seemed to fix the issue...

    the intermittency of electrical seems to me more likely.... but i don't know
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2020
  4. marclar

    marclar Administrator Staff Member

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    check the coil pack for cracks along the bottom mounted surface. best thing to do is just replace it. no real 'testing' you can do. sometimes the windings come apart internally under heat. no way to test that unless you pull over immediately during the failure and probe all the coil towers... while the factory wires are far superior than the a/m, probably in your best interest to replace them as well.

    other possible failures.. ignition switch, cutting power intermittantly to the vehicle. known issue
    fuel pump...
  5. axa

    axa FEOA Member

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    the sputtering itself is very consistent, and during sputtering it still seems to be getting partial power so I'm hesitant about any fuel delivery issue including fuel pump.

    at least when my carb bikes have messed up fuel delivery it is a real mess.

    well i suppose it's a very valid point of view to change plugs wires and pack due to age. rockauto does seem to have oem motorcraft wires for a decent price. not so much on the pack, can i get any advice on pack after market brands for this car, rockauto seems to have quite a few...

    Screenshot_20201015-150501_Chrome.jpg
  6. marclar

    marclar Administrator Staff Member

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    delphi or hitatchi. in industry, i alsways start with ignition first, then fuel.
    zzyzzx and Valdres Rose like this.

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