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Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

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Old 11-27-2011, 07:09 PM   #1
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Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

I have a 96 2.2L Isuzu Hombre that's been progressively getting worse over the past year or so. It is now to the point that I cannot drive it. The truck has 212k miles on it, the engine was replaced at about 100k due to the block freezing and cracking.

Initially I replaced the plugs and the air filter and it seemed to help briefly, but a few months later i was still downshifting for the smallest of hills.

I got a trouble code recently, right after it started running really poorly. I think it was a P1406 for the egr valve. I pulled the egr valve and it was stuck closed. I cleaned it, and the code has been off ever since but it is barely running now. So today I replaced the fuel filter, no change. Took the catalytic converter off to see if maybe that was it and found that it was actually hollowed out, so thats not it either.

I have not changed the plug wires cause I haven't quite figured out how they route and don't want to get them mixed up. It started to rain and then got dark, so perhaps can get that done tomorrow. Is there a trick to doing these wires? something I can remove to make things easier?

Also. I have searched the forums about the PCV valve. From what I can tell the modesl 98 and beyond don't have them, but that the 96 should? I pulled off a rubber elbow on the valve cover that i thought would go to the pcv valve, but that boot broke off and i am not certain that this is the pcv valve? I can't find a diagram (or my haynes manual) anywhere so I am kind of lost.

This is my husbands truck that he has had since 2001, and he didn't exactly do any proper maintenance. He says that the pcv valve has never been replaced except when the engine was if then cause he hasn't done it.

The truck just passed emissions the other day, which doesn't mean much except that there are no present trouble codes.

Any help would be appreciated.

thanks in advance!
Old 11-27-2011, 09:43 PM   #2
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

When my EGR went bad, I just pulled the electrical wire to it and it instantly ran better. I had a CEL come on after, but it was worth it to have the truck running right and not having to buy an EGR valve right away.
Old 11-27-2011, 10:34 PM   #3
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

Thanks for the response.

My EGR is not bad. It was stuck and I fixed that. It really made no difference in how the truck ran. it just cleared the codes.

I mentioned all the issues I had because RIGHT BEFORE the EGR got stuck and the light came on is when it started performing really poorly to the point that I wouldn't drive it anymore. Like maybe two days driving it... 20 miles or so total? then the light came on and I have driven it maybe 20 30 miles total since. Every time I drive it, it is really just to see if I fixed the problem. I really miss having a working truck though

The gas mileage is noticably less than what it use to be, but the idle and performance is what scares me. I am afraid it is just going to die on me.
Old 11-27-2011, 10:50 PM   #4
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

I cleaned mine and it cleared the codes also, but it also ran like crap. I unplugged the wire and it was like night and day.

Anyway, the plug wires could be another place to start. You could replace one wire at a time. You will have to unclip them from each other if you decide to go that route.
Old 11-27-2011, 11:40 PM   #5
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

If I run it with the wire disconnected it doesnt seem to prove anything, but the code comes back.

As far as the wires go, I cant see them to replace them any other way. It sounds absurd that it would be designed this wau, thats why I was asking how you are supposed to change them.

This truck is a different world from vws I am use to. Im lost without the book, but not sure where it got put when we moved :/ going to look for that some more tomorrow too.

Still need help figuring out this pcv valve too, if I even have one or not. Im going in this blindly so hope I dont break anything... Else
Old 11-27-2011, 11:49 PM   #6
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

It has a pcv valve. It is on the front side right under the GM logo on the throttle cable assembly. It runs to the manifold. It has a little plastic nut that holds it on the valve cover...

It doesn't sound like that would cause the problem you are having though.
Old 11-27-2011, 11:52 PM   #7
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

I had an 98 a few years back. Did all the same stuff. I got lucky one fat and grabbed a vaccum line coming out of the back of efi. It ran smooth. I cut off about 1/2" of the hose and never another problem. I know it's not rocket surgery but ???? Good
Luck
Old 11-28-2011, 12:21 AM   #8
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

Hmmm.... Well I will check the pcv anyway. 100k miles is prob a lot for it. Now I gotta figure out what the runber piece we broke was :/ thinking it would go to the pcv.

I did fix a small vacuum leak already. I will check again for leaks.

Any other suggestions what to look for?
Old 11-28-2011, 01:50 PM   #9
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

Have you checked your coils? They are located just behind the passenger front tire behind the mud flap on the side of the engine. Mine started running rough one day and after replacing everything that you mentioned, it still ran rough. After doing the coils it ran smooth and I had my power back. Locate the coils and you can trace your wires up from there. My wires were routed through the intake manifold and can be a bit of a pain to route, but it is doable with out removing anything. Having two sets of hands makes it simpler as well.

Chad
Old 11-28-2011, 06:19 PM   #10
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

Yeah waa gonna check them but couldnt find them... Jist did before it started raining yesterday. Still pouring today and going to snow tomorrow. Like I said, I can barely see them let alone get to them to remove them and route them properly. Are they easier to access from below?

Went to the dealer today and the piece we broke that I thought went to the pcv valve is called the pcv tube... But it doesnt exactly go near that gm cover, so... Thats still confusing... Havent taken that gm cover off to check the pcv yet.

Autozone checks coils dont they?
Old 11-28-2011, 10:50 PM   #11
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

The coils are a lot easier to get to if you jack the truck and remove the passenger front tire. There is a flap above the suspension arm that can be raised up out of the way and the coils can be access through there. I would just remove them and replace them if I was going to have somebody test them. They look like:



and there are two of them. As far as the rubber boot, I've been wodering the same thing. Mine is cracked as well and I have not been able to find out what it is called or why it is there or a part number for that matter. Take a look at this picture, am I correct at which boot you are looking for? If I am, hopefully somebody can tell us what it is and maybe a part number for it.





It is not the PCV valve which is at the front of the valve cover. This boot is at the rear like in the picture.


Chad
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Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills-coil.jpg   Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills-valve-cover.jpg   Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills-engine-bay.jpg  
Old 11-28-2011, 11:02 PM   #12
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

yes it is the boot! And it was $5 at the chevy dealer and is called the PCV valve tube... the boot and the plastic tube come together for $5... can't beat that! Still don't know what it has to do with the PCV valve... but that's why i pulled it cause i thought that is where the pcv valve would be!

Shouldn't i test the coils rather than throw parts at it? I really don't know that's what's wrong.

Thanks for all the help guys! This has been a huge help even though I haven't gotten the truck fixed yet... I know I can do this! just need someone that knows about chevys (or ones disguised as isuzus!) to give me some guidance!
Old 11-28-2011, 11:21 PM   #13
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

  1. Remove the ignition coil(s).
  2. Using an ohmmeter, check the resistance between the primary terminals on the underside of the coil. The resistance should be 0.50-0.90 ohms.
  3. Check the resistance between the secondary terminals. It should be 5000-10,000 ohms.
  4. If the coil failed either test, replace the coil.
This is what I found for testing the coils. Hope this helps.

Oh and thank you for the info on the PCV Valve Tube. Will see if my local dealer has one.

Chad
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Old 11-29-2011, 08:33 AM   #14
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

oh yeah chad, they carried it in stock too! good luck!

I'll try to check this out after work. too bad it gets dark at 6 :/

thanks for the info that will help a lot!
Old 11-29-2011, 10:23 AM   #15
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

Is there a part number for that tube or should I just ask for PCV Valve Tube? Also, if you go to Autozone.com and register with thier website, they have repair guides for a lot of vehicles. That's where I got the coil test from. Sometimes if you can't find something out for your particular vehicles engine, look in another vehicle with the same engine.

Oh and you're welcome.

Chad
Old 11-29-2011, 06:35 PM   #16
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

i didnt even know what it was when i asked for it, the guy knew it was a pcv valve tube. It also said so on the label... funny when i put it on today i saved it just in case you needed it... but i left it in the truck and it's too cold and wet to go back outside...

so i must be doing something wrong cause that pcv valve doesnt want to come out for anything you can see oil all over around it... oddly... or ummm well i don't even know what to say at this point, i put the pcv valve tube on the valve cover and then tried to take it back off... the metal piece that goes in to the valve cover came off with it, so now what? i am sure that isn't supposed to happen?!?1/!?!?!

Also, how does the valve cover come off? i heard it was "just a few bolts" but it looks like it is more than just a few? and that other things need to be removed to take it off?

Autozone also sucks cause they gave me the wrong o2 sensor (guess that is what i get for having someone else pick it up for me?). they show two o2 sensors on the truck, but i only see one on the truck... the one mounted on the cat. I believe it is before the cat? i could be remembering wrong, but it has a flat plug with about 4 wires i think on it? the one they show before the cat is just one wire? i don't see that one anywhere?

Really frustrating... I am bumming rides at this point
Old 11-30-2011, 01:34 PM   #17
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

Well I called the chevy dealer and they schooled me on how my isuzu is not a gm... Even though it says so everywhere. Then I called autozone and they questioned why I was replacing my oxygen sensor if I didnt have a troible code as if these only rarely go bad and aren't regular maintenance...

Hope to get the right part tomorrow
Old 11-30-2011, 01:38 PM   #18
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

With the exception of body panels and name badges, that's a S10 platform and drivetrain. You're probably better off just saying you need parts for an S10 in the future. But GM discontinued most parts for the s-series.
Old 11-30-2011, 03:05 PM   #19
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

Not sure about your Isuzu...lol... but on my 97 2.2L there are two sensors, one is located on the exhaust manifold (one wire)



The other (four wire) is locate right after the cat.



Both are torqued to 30 Lb Ft.


Chad
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Old 11-30-2011, 07:11 PM   #20
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

Yeah I don't know about my Isuzu either Chad... I don't even know why I am in an S10 forum... shows you how misguided I am... Even the girl at my work that doesn't know how to put air in her tires knows that my truck is an S10... it's kind of obvious...

Thanks for the pictures... I don't know anything about o2 sensors let alone having two of them. Last US spec car I changed an o2 sensor on was an 87 cabriolet and pretty sure it only had one.
Old 12-01-2011, 01:18 AM   #21
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

Well, I would also check the fuel filter, it could also be an issue with fuel pressure. Really, it would not hurt to go ahead and replace the coils, wires and plugs. fuel filter, air filter. It sounds like "throwing parts at it" but worse comes worse you will have to work on them eventually.
Old 12-01-2011, 08:16 AM   #22
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

I have a lot ofthose sensors for sale I'd let go for less than you can buy at the parts store. Most are used, but still working order. ALthough there are 2 new coil packs, well 1 was used for a month and the other for 1 hour. And there's a receipt and about 1.5 years of warranty left. It's for sale in my classifieds, click the link in my sig if you're interested.


But if I was you, I'd pull the spark plugs and see how they look, that can be a good indicator on how the engine is running.
Old 12-01-2011, 07:06 PM   #23
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

Okay, so here is where we are at... Since the truck started running like crap at the begining of November (then I went on vacation without it for two weeks so it sat) I have replaced:

Plug wires
Both oxygen sensors
fuel filter
PCV valve and pcv valve tube
both ignition coils
Verified the catalytic converter is non existent
Verified the air filter which was replaced earlier this year still looks brand new

The plugs were replaced earlier this year so I wasn't concerned about them, but I think it is time to pull them and see if maybe one of them isn't firing? The truck is still running REALLY rough after all this and seems like perhaps it isn't running on all cylinders? Not sure really how to explain what it's doing, perhaps lurching is a good word to describe it? It's an uneven idle... you can even visibly see how uneven it is.

So either a cylinder isn't getting spark or maybe fuel delivery?

Honestly the truck feels like it runs better masked under how crappy it runs... I just don't know where to go from here...

help, please?
Old 12-01-2011, 07:52 PM   #24
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From what you decsribed, a dead cylinder sounds like a very real possibility. Could be a number of things like or getting spark to a collapsed lifter or push rod. It could have even blown the head gasket.
Old 12-01-2011, 08:41 PM   #25
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

What codes if any are you getting now?
Old 12-01-2011, 08:59 PM   #26
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

No codes whatsoever
Old 12-02-2011, 09:51 PM   #27
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

Does it backfire at all? Maybe do some compression checks on the cylinders. Weird that you're not getting any codes or check engine light.

Chad
Old 12-02-2011, 10:17 PM   #28
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

no backfiring at all... after i put it back together yesterday i decided i would take it for a short drive just to make sure that it wasn't all the carb cleaner i used making it run funky (wishful thinking ya know). Well, I drove it about a half mile to a mile up the street... kinda scary. runs okay in first gear, but no power... doesn't like it in 3rd gear at all... really can't go above 25 mph... and really can't go up hills. flat is doable if i have to, but i am not going to drive it like this.

Unfortunately this thing called work gets in the way of repair time... so didn't get to work on it today. have a little time before work tomorrow so if it isn't too cold i am going to check the injectors by pulling the connection with it running to see if it makes a change... that is saying that i can get to the connections. I don't know what genius designed this whole set up... i don't know what they were thinking :/
Old 12-02-2011, 11:54 PM   #29
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

Have you checked your exhaust? Maybe a clogged cat or pipe. My Saturn did that when I had a plate bust loose inside the cat and clogged the flow. Tap on it and see if you here anything rattling.

I think you might be able to get to the back 2 injectors but the front two will require some disassembly.

Good luck.

Chad
Old 12-03-2011, 08:52 AM   #30
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

Yeah... The very first thing I checked was the cat... when I said that the cat was "non existent" I meant that I pulled it off and there was nothing in it... so it is essentially like a straight pipe... i don't know when that happened over the last 212k miles...

Unless you think that pieces of the cat could have clogged the muffler somehow? I did notice a small pinhole in the front of the muffler... I am guessing that is not supposed to be there... but it is the least of my concerns right now
Old 12-03-2011, 11:37 AM   #31
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

Quote: Originally Posted by VWGirl
Yeah... The very first thing I checked was the cat... when I said that the cat was "non existent" I meant that I pulled it off and there was nothing in it... so it is essentially like a straight pipe... i don't know when that happened over the last 212k miles...

Unless you think that pieces of the cat could have clogged the muffler somehow? I did notice a small pinhole in the front of the muffler... I am guessing that is not supposed to be there... but it is the least of my concerns right now
Drop and support the pipe after the cat. Drive it and see if there is a difference. The muffler could be your problem. The pinhole could be a condensate drain.
Old 12-03-2011, 11:56 AM   #32
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

It's not really drive-able at this point...

I tried to pull the injector connections this morning before work... they are indeed a pain to get to... so i decided to go with the plug wires first. I pulled #4 (thats the one towards the cab right?) and didn't notice a change in the way it was running, so i pulled the plug... plug looked good... hmmm okay, tried #3... seemed to run worse... so put it back on and tried the injector plug on #4... seemed to run worse. so went back to the plug wires again... this time i didn't notice a change when i pulled #3...

I didn't get to 1 and 2... i only had a few minutes before work. these arent exactly easy access :/

I am about to give up and take it somewhere and i really don't want to do that
Old 12-03-2011, 05:57 PM   #33
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

is it smoking at all? when the Fuel Pressure Regulator went out on my 95 it ran like crap and had no power.
Old 12-03-2011, 09:27 PM   #34
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

nope, no smoke.

Back when it first started running really bad i thought that i had a rotten egg smell when it first started (for like a day or two) and that is why i initially thought about the catalytic converter... obviously I was smelling something else since my cat is hollow unless it JUST happened and clogged things up.

What i don't understand is why when i disconnected the plug wires nothing seemed to change... can it really be running that bad that i can't notice a change in the way its running when i pull a plug wire?

A few people have suggested the fuel pressure regulator... I don't see it leaking any fuel... I think i have a spare coming so maybe i will just try and swap it out and see what that does...
Old 12-03-2011, 10:09 PM   #35
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

Have you checked the EGR? I'm wondering if that's causing some issues.
Old 12-03-2011, 11:11 PM   #36
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

yup, see first post third paragraph. The only code I ever got on this truck was right when it started running like crap and it was the EGR. was stuck closed. Took it off, cleaned it and the code went away and was running well... okay but not the best... i would assume if it got stuck again or wasnt functioning that it would trigger the code again... but honestly it wasn't running as bad with it stuck closed as it is running now.
Old 12-03-2011, 11:18 PM   #37
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

I'm just throwing stuff out now that I haven't seen mentioned but maybe:

Idle Air Control Valve
Throttle Position Sensor
Any hissing that doesn't sound normal (Vacuum leak)
Timing (maybe skipped a tooth)

Gonna be a tough one to figure out but we'll get you there.

Chad
Old 12-04-2011, 09:08 AM   #38
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

That's the thing, if it's stuck open, it will run worse than stuck close. Stuck close won't effect anything since at close, it's no different than most engine conditions with it off. WIth it stuck open though, it can cause running issues. But I don't know about throwing codes or not.
Old 12-04-2011, 10:11 AM   #39
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

How do you check the timing on this thing? is it something that i can do with a timing light? Honestly I thought of it skipping a tooth... but really wouldn't something else have to be wrong in order for that to happen? also it seemed to get progressively worse not just suddenly this bad.

It could be the egr stuck open i can take that back off and check... that's a real pain to get to :-/ I coated the thing in PB blaster when I cleaned it out but i guess that could burnout and let it get stuck. those are $$$$ too so I hope it isn't that.

Is there anyone in Atlanta that could come look at this thing and school me on it? You'd think there would be... I'd provide beer

In the meantime I think I need to rebuild a set of carbs and fix a gas leak for my VW so that I have something to drive... so long as I don't have to pull the engine for a certain spark plug I will have a car in a day... two if i gotta pull the engine... either way sounds quicker than this truck... I just miss having a truck Can't go stock up on junk yard parts without it!
Old 12-04-2011, 10:55 AM   #40
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

Have you checked fuel pressure? Have you checked compression?
Old 12-04-2011, 11:39 AM   #41
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

PM me your email and I'll email you some repair information that might be of use.
Old 12-04-2011, 02:23 PM   #42
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

could also check the vacuum with a guage/pump. picked one up at o'reileys when trying to diagnose mine (think it was $30-$40). apply vacuum to the EGR and see if its functioning or not. you can also apply vac. to the fuel pressure regulator to see if it runs any better or worse. IIRC higher the vac. the less fuel it gets. if no change its bad. probably not your case since mine smoked like a diesel with any throttle with the bad FPR.
Old 12-04-2011, 07:13 PM   #43
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

I have not checked the fuel pressure or the compression... haven't had time to do the compression check cause i only have about 30 min of daylight to work with every day... will have more next weekend... sucks to do this stuff by myself too and manual-less too. time and money seem to get in the way of everything

How do you even check the fuel pressure in these? I don't see anywhere to tap in the line to do so?

I have a couple vacuum gauges, think mine were harbor freight though for $20 and I think i have an overpriced craftsman one that isn't quite as good that was like $50... but I don't think you can hook those up to an electric EGR? Anyway I did pull that back out today and it is moving freely so it's not stuck. I think it has a pretty heavy duty spring in there so would be harder to get stuck open? (if the piece is down and flush I am assuming this is closed and when it is up it is open?) It still smells like PB blaster too, so think that stuff is doing its job.
Old 12-08-2011, 03:29 PM   #44
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

SO today is the first day i have had to try and do anything with the truck in a few days. Found the manual to the truck... was sitting on top of the tool box on top of the compression and fuel pressure testers... go figure.

So I started it up so i could get the engine warmed to do the compression check. decided i would try to check for vacuum leaks while it was sitting there idling. I think all of the cylinders are actually firing, just rough. it's like a smooth roughness if that makes any sense.

Anyway, I decided that I would try to look into the fuel system rather than compression (I really don't think it is compression and really don't feel like getting to the first two plugs and down to the coil pack if i don't have to, lazy, yes, but it's also in the 40's and i don't like the cold).

So I didn't hear any hissing sounds or see any more dry or cracked hoses (just the two small ones that go to the hood that i replaced a few weeks ago)... I tried pulling the vacuum hose from the FPR and it changed NOTHING.

So this is even more frustrating. I pull plug wires and can't tell that anything changed, and pull the vacuum from the FPR and nothing changes...

SO what am I missing here? Is there something that is overcompensating for everything?

I have help tomorrow so we can "T" in to the gas line for a pressure test (i'm allergic to gasoline so i'd rather not mess with it if i don't have to)... the lack of change with the FPR makes me wonder whether it is bad or not. Is there a way to test this? I can't find anything in the Haynes manual. Also, I don't think there is a way to test the injectors?


just got my box of parts from deathphoenix99, so hope that will help!
Old 12-08-2011, 07:30 PM   #45
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

can you test vacuum first to see that you have it.a vac guage tester can tell alot about problems in the engine.read it for vac but also see if it fluctuates and how.
Old 12-08-2011, 07:53 PM   #46
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

test the vacuum where? there are so many vacuum lines and i can't see the full line on some of them. i have a guage. couldn't find all my connectors and had the wrong size so will do that tomorrow.

also my fuel pressure gauge specifically says it doesn't work on gm throttle body systems... and i don't know how i would t in to the metal line... really big fuel hose? what do you guys use?
Old 12-09-2011, 02:11 PM   #47
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

okay, so didn't get much done today either... if anything confused myself further. Did a compression test and found as follows:

1: 110
2: 170
3: 140
4: 170

So on #1, it's the hardest to get to and as much as I tried I wasn't getting a good seat on the compression tester... this could account for the low reading. The first time I read it was the worst at 100, but I tightened it up a couple of times and both those times were 110.

The engine was also cold when i did this... I know it's supposed to be warmed up a little, but what can you really do when your truck sounds so bad you're afraid it's just going to die any second? I suppose I could have run it for a little bit anyway to warm it up, but I didn't... and I don't think it really mattered all that much.

I know that these readings aren't the best... but I also don't think that they are the cause of the way the truck is running. I know that they are supposed to be within 10% and clearly they aren't...

A friend suggested that the lack of the honeycomb in the cat could cause the second o2 sensor to read back to the engine that it is running too rich and cause it to run poorly and that i should replace the cat? That's kind of an expensive part to throw at it and I am sure that there are plenty of people out there with no cat and their truck runs just fine? can anyone confirm that or tell me how i could test this theory?

I am also leaning back to the exhaust being clogged with the cat debris since this cat wasn't taken off to empty out as far as we know... that stuff had to go somewhere.

Still don't know how to test the fuel... is there a special t fitting that will screw in where the fuel filter goes? maybe my fuel pressure tester just sucks, but it works fine for most VW's.

thanks again in advance.
Old 12-09-2011, 08:47 PM   #48
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

Quote: Originally Posted by VWGirl
test the vacuum where? there are so many vacuum lines and i can't see the full line on some of them. i have a guage. couldn't find all my connectors and had the wrong size so will do that tomorrow.

also my fuel pressure gauge specifically says it doesn't work on gm throttle body systems... and i don't know how i would t in to the metal line... really big fuel hose? what do you guys use?
unplug a vac line on t/body insert between t/b and line removed.it'll show vac watch it and what it does.let it warm up .
Normal Engine at Idle
When the engine is healthy and working correctly, at idle the needle of the gauge should be steady and within the range of 17 – 22 inches of mercury.



Vacuum should drop to 3 and then momentarily climb to 25 – 28 before settling back at the previous value. This indicates that the valves and rings are OK.
Poor Rings or Oil at Idle
The needle will be steady but the reading will be lower than normal.

Sticky Valve
The needle will drop occasionally about 4 inches of mercury from its normal idling read
Leaky Intake System
Needle reads low (eg below 5 inches of mercury) at idle. May also indicate late ignition timing or incorrect camshaft timing.
Leaky Head Gasket Between Cylinders
Needle floats regularly between 5 and 19 inches of mercury. May also indicate intake manifold gasket leak at an intake port or a faulty injector.
Blocked Exhaust
High reading at first but suddenly returns to zero then builds slowly back to about 16 inches of mercury.
logged PCV or Intake Manifold Leaks Needle moves slowly through a wide range of readings. Also check idle air/fuel ratio.
can't you get a fitting for a f/p guage to tie in to schrader valve on fuel line to rail[at least there's one on 98+]
Old 12-10-2011, 12:12 AM   #49
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

i don't see any schrader valve and the book said to take the filter out and t in there... i have a t fitting... but not sure how to make that fit over the threads...
Old 12-10-2011, 01:28 AM   #50
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Re: Rough idle, no power, won't pull hills

I had VERY similar problems with my 2000 sonoma 2.2..

My junk compression tester which was broken, lead me to do a headgasket job.. In the process i found my number 4 injector was barely spraying. Literally cleaned the injector with a piece of wire/carb cleaner until it matched the spray/flow pattern of the other 3, got the engine put back together and it runs perfectly now.

I had previously replaced coil packs, plugs and wires, removed the cat flange and ran it, nothing changed it. It was just the cylinder not getting fuel, basically a completely dead cylinder. My truck would barely go, it had no ass, it would shake like hell at idle, and just seemed as if it was gonna die.. WORLD of difference now. runs perfect.
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