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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hi all. I read your memo about the other forum being hacked so brought my problems here and I really hope somebody has some ideas. here's the info:

i have a 1986 eco conversion van with a motor i haven't seen. (Will go out to where it is and get the info off the tag).

When things are damp (it seems) the van will occasionally stall at a stoplight or somesuch and then won't restart for about an hour with a jumpstart. under its own power, it seems to ?backfire? Lug? during turing over. ee eee ee bump eee eee. Almost like a hickup. it will do this 3 or 4 times per cycle.

After a while it will start and run just fine with no more problems. until the next time which can be days or weeks away.

(I would say something about it only happening when the wife is driving it, but....) :smile5:

Any ideas would be helpful. thanks.
ETA: It is a 1986 E150
5.0 liter
With every bell and whistle
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Also: Does anyone have hints/tips on removing the doghouse/cowling to get a look at the motor? (You can stop laughing now....) :lol: It's completely carpeted, and looking from under the hood, idon't see anything on the top end of the motor that looks the least bit familiar. (I'm used to mid-70's Fords) That, and its a pretty tight fir, so one can't see back very far...

Thanks in advance for the help! :smile5:
 

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Whats the maintenance history ? Mileage ?
 

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Also: Does anyone have hints/tips on removing the doghouse/cowling to get a look at the motor?
To remove the Engine Cover (Doghouse), you unlatch the engine cover at the top (Fig.1), then unbolt the engine cover at the floor, (Fig.2), then remove the cover (Fig.3).

Hope this helps.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
Whats the maintenance history ? Mileage ?
info from the previous owner indicated that this rig was used for cross-country trips to the west coast and back over the last ten or so years. then it was used for in-state running around. (Camping,etc.) When i had it in the air changing out the muffler, everything looked pretty good. Age and mileage notwithstanding.

It has around 160k miles on it, but you would never know it from looking at the inside. The outside has VERY little wear and tear/rust on it. overall in excellent condition. (Except for the ignition, which has been jerry-rigged to a push-on starting switch.)


I had the oil changed 2500 miles ago. All the fluids are fine as of about ten days ago.
Hope that info helps.

----------------
*And thanks MI for the info on the doghouse. that should help!
 

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I'd probably start with a tuneup.

Since it has problems when it is damp, I's suspect that you have some bad spark wires, and if you spray them with a little water, you'll see some arching (little sparks) jumping around from the wires to close by grounds.

Probably also time for new plugs and distributor cap and rotor.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Well, the mechanic is going to look at it tomorrow. I'll let you know what he finds out. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
The mechanic came by yesterday and got the van running like a champ. He changed out the belts (they were glazed and squealing) and he thinks he solved the problem of it not starting.

Apparently the previous owner felt that putting a new solenoid where the old one was would be too hard, so he merely bolted it to the negative battery cable housing. Over time it worked itself a bit loose and would not give spark when needed. That struck me a bit odd until the mechanic showed me that hidden from view, the previous owner had done a similar thing with the Electronic Ignition module as well. :confused5: So intermittent crank as well as intermittent spark = no starting.

Whatever he did seemed to work, so i will wait to see until the next damp, dark, and dreary day. (He also changed out the Mass Airflow Sensor on my Buick Park Avenue, so at least if something does happen, i will still have some wheels.):smile5:

thanks for your suggestions and help with the doghouse. I will check back in now and again and see if I can return the favor sometime.
 
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