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Ignition short, Cranks but wont start becuase of no spark

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Old 04-03-2009, 01:51 AM   #1
xsplatz
Toms River, NJ
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Ignition short, Cranks but wont start becuase of no spark

About 2 weeks ago i posted here about a short i had in my truck that was draining my battery and killing electronics. It ended up being a busted ignition cylinder lock switch after i cut apart the whole wiring harness and tested the crap out of everything.

Well it was good for 2 weeks. I was taking it up the parkway and back round trip 3 hrs and around town. Then on monday everything started to happen. On the way home from work i got a check engine light and i keep my xcal3 with me so pulled the p1309 code. which is engine misfire detection enabled. I cleared the code and didnt notice any sound or driveability difference. Couldnt understand where a missfire code was comming from. So i drove it home and didnt get the code again.

After the long day i decided to get the truck washed. This is where everything went south quick. I filled up with gas and then went to the drive through touch free car wash. Well as i sat in the truck and was getting clean it finished. I had left the truck in gear running with my foot on the break and my electric fan running to keep the modded engine from overheating through the 5 minute wash.

Well as it finished i let of the break and pushed on the gas but nothing. So i figured maybe the wash had tripped a sensor or something, and i tried to restart her but all that would happen was the engine would crank but not start. I knew my optima yellow top didnt run out of battery so i had the person behind me help push my truck out of the wash bay so i could take a look at the engine.

Once i popped the hood i checked the fuel rail schrader valve to make sure i had fuel and pressure which i did. I also carry a multi meter with me so i can check if i blow a fuse and the battery was at 12.34 V. As i tried to start the engine it came close a couple time to kicking over but no go. Then finally i had a budy stop by and he immediately heard that the timing was off by 180 degrees. So we ran to Advanced and bought a new cam shaft position sensor and put it in.. still no start. you could smell the gas comming out of the exhaust as we tried several times to start it. even tried starting fluid but coudlnt get it started. So i had to get a town home.

The next day i picked up a crank sensor to see if the would fix the timing and get her running. After installing the sensor i tried to start her but she just cranked. I could hear the timing was finally right but no start. No i took the plug off the coil pack and saw that during cranking there was no spark. I unfortunetly didnt check this when i died in the wash sine we all thought it was a sensor dealing with timing

Out came the multi meter and the cable attaching to the coil packs had no voltage on the center Red/green wire which is suppose to carry the ignition voltage when trying to start the truck. So once again i ended up having a shorted igiition some where. Once again the stores were all closed by this point so i couldnt do anything else

The next day i went to ford and picked up a new ignition switch module. To see if that was the cause. So I switched the module and then pulled the ignition cyliner switch from steering column. Thinking i had solved it i ended up seeing that the short was stilll there. The short did not blow any fuses or relays. it left the power distribution box alone, and is pretty much contained to the pcm, ignition, ect.

I am not sure what way to go next. it will cost $168 for a new Pats enabled key and ignition steering switch. So i want to make sure that would be it before i go that path. All my accessories are diconnected to eliminate the chance that they might be causing it along with the ignition cables pulled from the coil packs to eliminate them

any help would be greatly appreciated. She cranks, has fuel, but not spark caused by no voltage making it to the coil packs becuase of a short to ground somewhere.
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Old 04-03-2009, 06:06 AM   #2
Tbars4
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...This might be of some help...
http://www.explorerforum.com/forums/...highlight=pats




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Old 04-03-2009, 08:33 AM   #3
xsplatz
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thanks for the post I checked the PATS and it follows the correct procedure and turns off when the key is in. I should have mentioned I still have the same ignition cylinder switch from the factory. After switching out the factory lock cylinder the previous short disappeared and I replaced the original cylinder and returned the one from advanced. The short stayed out with old one. Also the pats would disable the ignition but wouldn't ground short it.
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Old 04-03-2009, 10:28 AM   #4
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your posts continue to amaze me.... quote from the first here ... "It ended up being a busted ignition cylinder lock switch after i cut apart the whole wiring harness and tested the crap out of everything." ... then you write... "I should have mentioned I still have the same ignition cylinder switch from the factory. After switching out the factory lock cylinder the previous short disappeared and I replaced the original cylinder and returned the one from advanced."

I have to give you credit for your "tenacity" but don't give you much for your testing methods, etc. I don't think a "short" on your ignition would be "survivable" by any protection system (ie. fusing or wiring) in your truck... so I don't quite understand this statement. Good luck
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Old 04-03-2009, 10:50 AM   #5
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After I pulled the ignition switch from the steering column an then tested the engine there was no more voltage grounding out. And the battery drain went away. After I replaced the same original ignition switch back in the reading were the same and the drain was gone.

Now that I have no start I checked the voltage again.

By taking my multi meter black probe and keeping it on the positive side of the battery and taking the red lead and touhing the Rd/Gr "ignition wire" going to the coil pack it is showing that there is no voltage but that it is acting like a ground "" voltage comming from it. So something is not completeing the electrical ignition circuit and it is grounding out
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Old 04-03-2009, 11:18 AM   #6
budwich
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OK... I can't take it any more. You certainly need help. Let's go back to basic as your last post illustrates that you don't really know how to measure / work with a meter.

quote from above... "By taking my multi meter black probe and keeping it on the positive side of the battery and taking the red lead and touching the Rd/Gr "ignition wire" going to the coil pack it is showing that there is no voltage but that it is acting like a ground "" voltage comming from it. So something is not completeing the electrical ignition circuit and it is grounding out".

That is NOT how you use a meter. All that you have done is measured that there is NO drop in voltage from your positive battery terminal to your coil... you have basically done NOTHING. How to use a meter... basically on the voltage setting, place the "black wire on a KNOWN ground (ie. car metal body... hopefully, battery's negative terminal, etc). Next, place the red wire on the point that you want to measure.... your battery's positive terminal... in this case should then read ~12v.... OR in your "test", your ignition ignition RD/GR wire (assuming your key is ON... I hope)... your reading should be ~12v again... that's BECAUSE its at the same voltage (or nearly the same) as your positive battery terminal.

Let us know what your results are after you have follow this "procedure" and we can go from there.
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Old 04-03-2009, 11:41 AM   #7
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Yes I understand that. From ground black probe to coil ignition wire red probe with key on is 0 volts. Now to humor me if u put ur black probe on the power and take ur red lead and touch any of the metal contacts on ur hot fuses in ur power distribution box you will show zero volts since it is hot, will be the samething on the hot ignition coil wire if the power isn't going through the wire but is getting grounded out it is going to show the full charge of the battery as negative -12.35 volts. Acting as a complete circuit. Which is what happening
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Old 04-03-2009, 12:17 PM   #8
budwich
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BUT you have done NOTHING with this "method"..... Look... take your black lead and stick it on the red battery terminal and wave your other lead (red lead) in the air... NOTE THAT METER IS READING 0.... THAT DOES NOT MEAN THAT THE AIR IS AT 12 VOLTS. Again, YOU HAVE DONE NOTHING.

Your "methods of testing" is your biggest problem in looking at your issues and further it makes it almost IMPOSSIBLE for anyone here to readily help you. I am sorry for my "words" but its tough watching your threads "thrash about" in such a manner yet see the "tenacity" that you are going at your problems... tenacity good... method / understanding not so good. Good luck.
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Old 04-06-2009, 12:08 PM   #9
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Well meter skills are not my specialty. But as u described with key "off" the the center wire(+) going to the coil pack shows 7.45 volts. When the key is "on" the center wire reads 0.00 volts. Brand new ignition switch. Pats is fine and working. Crank sensor is working check engine light comes on and goes off when it's suppose to. Iput in a new lock switch and pulled the pats collar off to the side and put the key in it so it reads the chip but is using the new lock cylinder for testing. Now I do have msd but ohms test showed nothing no resistence
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Old 04-06-2009, 06:40 PM   #10
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Just to ensure we are on the same "meter page".... where did you have your test leads for your measurements (eg. black lead on the negative battery post and red lead on the test point / + of the coil pack). IF that is true, the first reading is probably OK while the second isn't any good. My problem is I don't 2000 ex drawings... only 96 which doesn't show any "kill relay" for things like anti theft or otherwise and therefore it is a "straight run" from the ignition switch... which might be your next test area. Hopefully someone else will help out but please confirm your measurements.
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Old 04-06-2009, 06:46 PM   #11
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Yes the measurements were taken that way.
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Old 04-07-2009, 07:46 AM   #12
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OK... then rather than going to the ignition switch... go to the fuse panel (interior). Its important that you find a "known ground".... "remembering" that this is your "reference" for your measurements (ie. the black lead on the meter). On my 96 schematics, the power from your key "on" goes thru LG/P wires to the fuse panel and shows up on "at least" on fuse 11, 15, and 19... BUT NOTE... I know that fuse arrangements can / are different across model years. The one that is important at this stage is 19 which feeds the ignition where you just checked and the PCM relay which is also important. Hopefully you can find the "equivalent" for your truck (ie. in your users manual)... description in 96 says "ignition coil, pcm diode....". Remember it important that you find a "valid ground" for your measurements....
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Old 04-07-2009, 08:31 AM   #13
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I checked the PCM diode and have full voltage on both sides of the diode. I also checked the PCM relay. It is clicking on when the key is turned on. I checked the 86 and 85 connections at the box and they show the right positive and ground with key off and switch correctly with key on. I can run the black probe off of the negative battery terminal if that is a decent grounding reference? I have the massive 2 book ford shop manual, ford shop wiring diagram, ford shop cd, and haynes manual. I can see that fuse 19 is the same. Also 13. I will check these tonight.
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Old 04-07-2009, 09:17 AM   #14
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Again... just to get back on the right page with your measurements (just make sure there is NO misunderstanding)..... a "0" voltage measurement is NOT a measure of ground. It is a measurement of "NO VOLTAGE"... remember the probe in air "trick", the air is / was NOT ground. The only way to measure ground is with a resistance measurement to a KNOWN ground (ie. when you see 0 ohms to a known ground).

OK... I see from your measurements that you are "tenaciously" getting there.... good. So you appear to have determined that you have power out from your ignition switch to at least one "leg" of fuse 19.... meaning that fuse 19 is doing its job (ie. conducting, not blown). On my 96 truck CD, in the power distribution diagrams for "that area" (from fuse 19), it shows that power leaves the fuse box on R/LG goes thru a splice, with one "leg" going to the PCM diode and "onwards" while the other "leg" go to ignition coils (again thru a splice). Hopefully, your 2000 diagrams will show similar... please have a look to ensure that there is nothing else in the path (kill relays or others) and see if you can locate the splices of interest.... the wire color stays the same for both legs. On my reference, s118 closest to the coils is by fuel injector 3 while the other one s116 is near connector C146 which is in the rear left hand engine compartment (I assume fire wall area ... drivers side). Of course, those are my 96 numbers / locations... you need to cross check those numbers / locations / diagram layout for your year.
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Old 04-08-2009, 01:32 AM   #15
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Bud... Thanks for all your help. After testing and testing i finally decided to disconnect the msd and remove the tach adapters and restore it to the original ignition system. Once it was back to stock, the voltage at the coil pack was full battery voltage at key "on". I was then able to check for spark which was there and got her started. With out the MSD the truck tune was off but i was able to find the battery drain and ignition problem. After calling MSD they have had alot of problems with the MSD dis-4 plus boxes failing. So with only 2 months on the box and a good warranty i am now waiting for a new one to come in.

Thanks all. Have learned a lesson that once you change anything that is stock your going to be fighting a up hill battle for a long time.
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Old 04-08-2009, 11:08 AM   #16
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At least now you have figured out the problem. Sometimes even "new" parts off the shelf are defective. Once your replacement MSD comes in, it would be interesting to learn if it too causes your drain. Not all "modifications" turn out as troublesome as this one has, but at least you stuck with it, and I'm guessing learned more in the process!
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Old 04-08-2009, 12:04 PM   #17
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I will let you know how the new msd works. Will prob take 2 weeks to get it back. It's funny since I had so many other large problems that could have occured from notching the pistons to fit the larger valves from the afr heads to the shift kit. It it ended up being the msd which never crossed my mind. I did take a much larger knowledge of electrical testing with the help of budwhich although I'm sure it killed him a little inside to try to explain some of these things to me.
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