Check the simple stuff first... | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

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Check the simple stuff first...

I just got done watching a YouTube video. I think the guy is the owner/mechanic and his shop is called something like "South Main Auto".

A guy who had a 2007 Ford Escape had his truck towed to the shop. He had just finished rebuilding the engine and no matter what he tried he could not get it to start.

The mechanic began by cranking the engine over and found that it behaved/sounded normal. Then he removed the first of the 4 coil-on-plugs, which were new. He immediately noticed that there was no spring-looking thing that physically connected the coil to the spark plug. He then checked coils 2-4 and they were also missing the coil-to-spark spring thing. Next he checked the fuel injectors with a noid and found them to all be receiving a pulse (and found that they were).

The mechanic noticed there were a bunch of boxes and old parts in the back of the truck. He rooted around for a minute and found the 4 missing coil-to-spark plug springs/connectors. He installed the connectors and hit the ignition key and the engine fired right up and sounded great.

So, moral of this story is... when things don't make sense, start with the obvious stuff first. Spark, fuel and air. I would have loved to hear the phone call to the truck's owner when he finds out what simple mistake he made.

We all do dumb stuff. It reminded me of the time I installed a timing belt on my daughter's PT Cruiser (not an easy job) and could not get it running afterwards. 2 days later I realized that my daughter had dropped it off with about a pint of fuel in the tank. Just enough for me to drive it up on ramps. I spent 2 days trying to figure that one out.

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Out of gas!

My stepson(s) did a V8 conversion into his beloved 97 sploder....fighting it for like 6 months, started right up...then the exhaust caught fire (02 sensor harness melted) he put that out quickly. Changed the whole engine harness, changed the down pipes, would not run. Check fuel psi, check compression, would not run. Would start up sometimes and blow a PCM fuse. Kept replacing the fuse, start run fuse pop. Eventually as soon as they turned the key fuse pop until one day no more fuse pop, no start, nana. That's when they came to me for help.
I took my volt meter and a flashlight over there with volt meter I quickly found the power dist box not getting powered up. Mega fuse was bad.
Replaced mega fuse (blew their minds they had no idea there was a mega fuse, honestly this was the first time i ever had to replace one but I knew they existed)
So now you turn the key and run the starter....boom PCM fuse blows.
Out comes the flashlight...
The 5.0 main battery ground to the frame is in the same loom as the starter wiring, sure enough he had the wiring run to the starter, bolted to the front of the engine properly,. but hanging there in space was the main ground....never connected to the frame.
Runs perfectly to this day

Check your work! simple stuff first.....without us would these trucks all be crushed? LOL

Back in the late 1970's I had a '70 Cyclone GT 429 Cobra Jet. The body was a little rough, and it was what I drove instead of my '74 Ranchero with a recent 472 (460 bored .060) build. I don't remember if the Ranchero had new paint yet. Anyway, drove the Cyclone home one night in a snow storm and parked it facing away from the wind, which I thought would be best in the now heavy snow storm that was rapidly becoming a blizzard. Not so much as it turned out. The snow packed under the hood so hard I had to use a shovel to clear the snow from around the engine. It sat there for 3 months before I got it started again, which didn't make my dad at all happy as it was blocking exit from the shed his feed grinder was in. He eventually was able to get the grinder out, but it was tight. The Cyclone would crank, was getting gas to the carb, and had spark to the plugs, but wouldn't start. Almost started numerous times, but no go. I changed the points, plugs, condenser, distributor cap, everything I could think of, despite the fact it was running fine when I parked it. Knew it had to be something really simple and stupid. One day I decided I'd tried everything else, and despite the fact it had been cranking and had spark to the plugs, I unbolted the ground cable and cleaned the block, which didn't look bad. Turned the key, and it fired right off.

After several long nights of frustration working on mechanical stuff I have learned that the (KISS) principle is the best way to go.

KISS = Keep It Simple Stupid

Last Memorial Day l bought a new to me '03 H2 luxury complete with all Led lights a Magnson supercharger and full third row seats. And only 72000 original miles. She is running over 500 horsepower, so I guessed she was going to need new brake pads. The tires had plenty of rubber but plenty of cracks. Two months ago the battery gave up. Replaced it but the side post was loose, broke my foot, no driving, month later battery dead. Charged the battery new issue! All analog gauges dead! What the #@#-- . Went on hummer forums, doom and gloom time. GM's are notorious for their instrument clusters step motors going out. CRAP!! Next morning dead again. Check all fuses all good. BOTTOM LINE CHECK THE SIMPLE STUFF FIRST!! Remember the loose post on the battery?? Changed out the battery, all good now.

(dead links)

Since this thread is revived, I'll tell my story too. 2003 Grand Am 3.4 V6, got it from a family member for 300$, wont start, wont crank, sat for 9 months, 213k miles. So I thought, starter. Put a starter on, nothing! So did some internet digging, and found out when these cars sit for awhile with no battery, the security system will need to be reset. Thought "oh no", but all you do is turn the key onto the run position and leave for 10 mins and that resets it. 10 mins later, it cranks all day long, but no start. So we used starting fluid, and eventually it starts, and runs great. Trans works good, motor runs great, even the brakes works well. Only thing wrong with it was flat spotted tires from sitting. Drove it home without a problem, no dash lights or anything. Turn it off warm, go to start it up right back up and fires up immediately. Let it cool down, and crank crank crank all day. This puzzled me for at least a week, till I decided pull out the test light and test some fuses. I noticed this little mini 10 amp fuse labeled AC-something was blown out. Ac didn't work, but hey, I decided to replace it anyway. Didn't I get in that car and turn the key, and the thing fired right up!!!! Blew the fuse a few more times the next few months till I figured out it was the AC clutch coil that was popping the fuse, which somehow had to do with cold starts, and the automatic power lock when u put it into gear also didn't work when the fuse blew. Replaced the clutch coil, and haven't had and issue since. Has 219k now and runs as good as the day a paid 300$ for it, though I will probably be selling it soon.
"Keep It Simple Stupid"