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PT acting wacky and not in a fun way

 
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Old 27 Dec 2016, 10:08 pm
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Location: Northridge, California Baby
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Default PT acting wacky and not in a fun way

Sorry for this being so long. It's been an annoying 3 days.

On Christmas Eve I went out to move my car and it felt really weird when I started it. The ignition sputtered, the engine shook, and it idled and ran rough. The CEL went off immediately and gave me a P0300 (Random multiple misfires) and p2302 (Ignition coil A secondary coil malfunction). Additionally there was a loud whine that I thought was a belt and could smell gas in the exhaust.

I spent much of Christmas day working on it until I finally discovered that the squealing and the rough engine were 2 separate problems hitting at the same time. The squealing was because the power steering fluid was very low and I only discovered this after a puddle of fluid formed under the car. I just replaced the damned leaky hoses less than 2 months ago so I wasn't happy about this, but I decided to deal with this later. Right now the main problem is the engine running badly.

I took out the plugs and examined them. A couple were black at the end, but not thickly so. After this point the CEL codes changed. I wasn't getting the P0300 or the P2302, but instead getting P0303 (#3 cylinder misfire). I switched around both the #3 plug and the wires, but still kept getting the same code. I decided to replace the plugs and wireset with new ones just to eliminate that from the further diagnosis.

The car still ran rough but now the code I was getting was P0113 (IAT high voltage) and the gas smell continued. I checked the voltage in the IAT and got 6 or 7 when it was supposed to be around 5 volts, so it was definitely getting a higher voltage, but not constantly as later it was back to 5. I used a signal tracer to check the wires to the IAT sensor, but it seemed fine all the way back to the PCM. The continuity in the sensor itself was good and checking the sensor voltage with the hair dryer test showed it is working properly. Still, I switched out the sensor with the one in my wife's PT for testing.

At this point I'm not getting a CEL, but am nevertheless pulling code P172 System Too Rich (Bank 1), hence the gas smell I assume and the car is still running rough. The exhaust sounds a little "putt-putt", the engine is shaking, and when in gear there is a loss of power like something is getting missed (a misfire or something).


Could it be timing belt issue? A PCM problem? A fuel injector problem? Camshaft sensor? I don't know where to go from here. This is my 2004 PT turbo-lite with 155k miles. The new plugs are Champion 470 RE14MCC5 gapped to .42. One day it was fine, the next, all wacky.

Last edited by Renegade; 27 Dec 2016 at 10:20 pm.
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Old 27 Dec 2016, 11:37 pm
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Join Date: Aug 2014
Location: Thousand Oaks, CA
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Default Re: PT acting wacky and not in a fun way

P0172 code means your engine is running rich.

Possible Causes:

1 Intermittent Condition
2 O2 Sensor Heater Operation
3 O2 Sensor
4 EVAP Purge Solenoid Operation
5 O2 Sensor Signal Circuit Short To Voltage
6 O2 Sensor Signal Circuit Open
7 Throttle Position Sensor Voltage Greater Than 0.90 Volt With Throttle Closed
8 TPS Sensor Sweep
9 MAP Sensor Operation
10 ECT Sensor Operation Engine Mechanical Problem
11 Fuel Filter/Pressure Regulator (Too High)
12 PCM


4. EVAP Purge Solenoid Operation

I would suggest we start looking into this possible #4 cause first due to the smell of fuel,etc,.

I would suggest checking the purge valve. The EVAP system prevents fuel vapors in the fuel tank from escaping into the air. The system traps fuel vapors from the fuel tank and stores the vapor in the charcoal canister. When the engine is running under the right conditions, the fuel vapors are purged from the canister and burned inside the engine. The purge valve precisely controls the amount of fuel vapor that is purged from the charcoal canister. The purge valve is an electrical solenoid, that is controlled by the engine computer. When the engine is off, the purge valve is closed. When the engine is running and fully warmed up, the engine computer gradually opens the purge valve to allow some amount of fuel vapor to be moved from the charcoal canister to be burned in the engine. The purge flow is monitored by a number of sensors. You can check the purge valve to see if it closes as it should with a vacuum pump. Do not replace the purge valve, just check it to see if its closing like it should. Check the wires going to the purge valve and make sure it has good contacts.

Do you have any problems filling up your gas tank? Another member has a valve fail in the gas tank allowing fuel instead of fuel vapors to go into the canister. See if you have raw fuel coming out of the hose going to the purge valve.

Do you top off when you are filling up the gas tank or do you take the nozzle out after the first click?
Handy_Cruiser and revo like this.
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Last edited by ptcruisersteve; 27 Dec 2016 at 11:40 pm.
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Old 28 Dec 2016, 12:12 am
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Default Re: PT acting wacky and not in a fun way

I usually stop at the second click. The tank is on full at the moment, but I've driven at least 10 miles since the fill up. No problems filling it.

I just took of the MAP sensor to check it and after putting it back on and starting up I had 7 codes popup at ignition. I immediately erased them and then restarted to see if they would reappear, but they didn't. I did not note them down (I think one was the 0172 and there was one for the cam sensor and one for the crank sensor), but even a bunch of false positives at the same time seems pretty weird to me. The engine was still idling poorly and I smelled gas in the exhaust.
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Old 28 Dec 2016, 12:36 am
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Default Re: PT acting wacky and not in a fun way

P2302 code. This code is for coil #1 Insufficient Ionization. This is a very common code on Chrysler vehicles. On this Chrysler style ignition system the Automatic Shutdown relay supplies battery power to the positive side of the coil. The voltage flows through the primary windings of the coil out the coil negative terminal back to the PCM. The PCM is the ignition module and responsible for primary triggering. This code sets when the PCM does not see proper primary events.

You might want to double check the connector for coil #1 that the coil connector plugs into. I had another member that found that connector was bad, went to a junk yard and found another one to replace it. It fixed the problem.

The camshaft and crankshaft error in degrees is another area to look at that might be causing the P2302. Do you know how many miles on the current timing belt?

Please post what you find out.
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Last edited by ptcruisersteve; 28 Dec 2016 at 12:38 am.
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Old 28 Dec 2016, 01:01 am
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Default Re: PT acting wacky and not in a fun way

It feels like the timing is off but I have no idea when the the timing belt was changed to be honest (used car). I did a timing belt job on my wife's PT this year and figured I would do mine just to settle my piece of mine later next spring. I suppose once I figure out how to check my belt without taking everything apart (not easy to do at an apartment) I'll give that a go.

I'll look into the connector. But like I said, I'm not getting the P2302 code anymore. I had to check the connector a couple of years ago for a fried PCM, so I'll see if I still have the wires I used.

While idling the the sound from the exhaust isn't steady, it's almost like a putt-putt, but not as steady. And when in gear it feels like it's misfiring, but I'm not getting a code for that currently.

It has always idled a bit high though and I never nailed down why. It ran just fine, but occasionally the idling would seem so strong that while stopped at a light I sometimes changed into neutral to calm it down. But that wasn't its constant state.
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Old 28 Dec 2016, 01:25 am
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Default Re: PT acting wacky and not in a fun way

I would suggest using a vacuum gauge for reading, if the belt is off a tooth it will reflect in either a very high idle HG or very low.

An engine that is in good condition will idle between 16-18 steady on most 2.4 engines.
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Old 28 Dec 2016, 01:30 am
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Default Re: PT acting wacky and not in a fun way

Vacuum gauge testing would be a new area for me, never having done that before. Still, gotta learn sometime.

However, I just pulled the plugs I put in yesterday and one of them, #3, is showing no signs of firing. That's the one I was getting a misfire code for before I replaced the plugs and wires. I need to figure out what's causing that, whether its the coil or the PCM not firing it. I had a problem with the PCM 2 years ago not firing 1 and 4, but that was fixed.

I should have bought a plug tester when I was at Harbor Freight today I guess.
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Old 28 Dec 2016, 02:21 am
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Default Re: PT acting wacky and not in a fun way

Post what you find out if the cylinder has spark. If it does I would suggest a engine compression test to see if there is enough compression for the cylinder to fire.
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Old 28 Dec 2016, 06:21 pm
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Default Re: PT acting wacky and not in a fun way

The cylinder has spark, but it did not pass the compression test.
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Old 28 Dec 2016, 08:21 pm
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Default Re: PT acting wacky and not in a fun way

Tried a wet/dry test. The results were discouraging. This is what I get for enjoying driving the car so much lately. Never tempt fate with overt displays of happiness I guess.
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