TROUBLESHOOTING FORD COIL PACKS

Is there any way to check coil packs on a 2000 Ford Crown Vic? I have a mis fire on a cylinder (or maybe two) and if the pack is good I may just need a new boot, (if they sell only the boot) I did have the same
problem a year ago and the dealer replaced two packs under warranty, now Ford wants some big $$$ to check out the car and about $250 per coil pack. At these prices I should replace all remaining 6 at $80 each. Any Ideas??? What is the best way to find out which coil pack is giving me the problem, the check engine light is not on.
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Did you scan it for trouble codes? The older OBD I Fords would do a cylinder balance test with nothing but a jumper. You could try to find a service manual at the public library. This adds nothing to your solution, but my girlfriend's Cavalier set a code that said # 4 cylinder was misfiring. Turned out to be a bad boot on the plug wire. It too has distributor-less ignition. When fixing it I found some real auto parts stores sell individual wires. You may find the stuff you need at a NAPA store.
Al
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I don't believe that Ford's EECV has a built-in cylinder balance test. At least not one that a shade-tree-mechanic type scanner would initiate. Seems that Ford decided to make this a money maker for its dealers. On the other hand, it may not be required as much as before. If there is a persistent misfire, there will be a stored code identifying the misfiring cylinder. This is done on-the-fly without killing ignition, by a rather sophisticated algorithm that measures the angular acceleration profile around the combustion cycle. And by the way, the OP's car seems to be coil-on-plug. No ignition wires in this case...

cylinder balance test with nothing but a jumper. You could try to find a

but my girlfriend's Cavalier set a code that said # 4 cylinder was

distributor-less ignition. When fixing it I found some real auto parts stores sell > individual wires. You may find the stuff you need at a NAPA store.
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in
Actually for Ford 4.6L COP engines the coil pack boot is effective a short plug wire. The actual coils are above the intake manifold. The boots connect the coil packs to the plugs and can (and do) go bad, just like longer plug wires. I recommend replacing the boots whenever you change the plugs. The boots cost $3 to $5 depending on where you shop. If you replace the plugs every 75,000 to 100,000 miles, the extra $24 to $40 for the boots is good insurance.
Ed
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Big Al wrote:

here is a neat trick .... if you have a supsect coil pack and you want to perform a HOMMADE cylinder balamce test this is for you. First make sure all you wires are good
note this works best at the coil/cap end but if plug wires are good you can do it at either end. now take some vacuum line (about one inch or so .. just enough so you can see it out the bottom of the boot.)and fit it in the plug wire. plug the other end into the coil or distributer cap or whatever you have. Repeat for all wires. start car make sure you have no problems or at least no more than you did before you started. now take a test light and ground the end lile normal... you can use the sharp end to touch the vacuum hose to "safely short" that cylinders spark to ground killing that cylinder... presto poor mans cylinder balance test you should be able to pinpoint the missing cylinder now..
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On 11 Jul 2005 17:49:48 -0700, "chuckster"

If you are having a misfire, a free scan of the ecm at Autozone or such may give you a fault code which tells you which cylinder has been detected misfiring.
Lugnut
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----- Original Message -----
Newsgroups: alt.autos.ford Sent: Monday, July 11, 2005 8:49 PM Subject: TROUBLESHOOTING FORD COIL PACKS

If the check engine light is not on, why do you think you have a misfire? It has been my experience that the OBDII system is very good at detecting misfires. Ford Issued a TSB warning dealers that 50% of the coil pack being replaced under warranty were not bad. The TSB included elaborate tests for determining whether or not a coil pack is bad. The tests don't look like something you can do at home. If you have a misfire, the OBDII code will identify the cylinder with the misfire. The boots are separately replaceable (they cost $3 to $5). The dealer should sell you a coil pack (uninstalled) for around $100. Aftermarket coil packs are available for less than $75. Lazy mechanics often blame coil packs when they are not at fault. Dishonest mechanics often blame the coil packs because they are profitable to replace. Are you sure you don't have an intake manifold leak or other problem?
Here is part of the Ford TSB:
TSB 04-16-1 08/23/04 ISSUE Approximately 50% of coil on plug (COP) coils returned for warranty do not have a problem. ACTION The misfiring cylinder must be identified through Self-Test misfire codes or through WDS Power Balance. Rule out base engine problems, rule out fuel problems, and then look at ignition problems (be sure to rule out coil primary circuit issues). Once the above steps have been completed, and the issue is in the secondary part of the ignition system, the oscilloscope procedure outlined in this TSB can isolate the difference between a coil or spark plug problem. SERVICE PROCEDURE The optional WDS COP Kit available through Rotunda will provide more accurate diagnosis and help reduce replacement of non-defective parts. The Kit (418-FS528) can be purchased through 1-800-ROTUNDA. The following material will detail the diagnostic steps on WDS to take the guesswork out of misfire diagnosis using the COP Kit. The following procedure is for cylinder specific misfires and not random misfires. Random misfires have a different root cause and are not covered by this TSB. Misfire Definition: A misfiring cylinder is lacking power relative to the other cylinders. The causes for a cylinder specific misfire could be fuel, spark, or mechanical problems. Perform a thorough visual inspection. If no visible concerns are found use the following WDS tools for misfire diagnosis: ^Self-test (Check for codes first) ^Power Balance (Identify the cylinder of concern) ^Relative Compression (Rule out a possible mechanical issue) ^Fuel (Make sure fuel injectors are not restricted) ^Ignition (Make sure spark plugs and coils are working properly) Oscilloscope (Detailed signal analysis) NOTE USE THE ENCYCLOPEDIA BUTTON IN THE LOWER LEFT CORNER OF THE SCREEN FOR DETAILED INFORMATION ON THE WDS TOOL BEING DISPLAYED. If there is a self-test code identifying a particular cylinder then you just need to determine if it is a fuel, ignition, or possibly a mechanical problem. Proceed to Step 2 after running Relative Compression to rule out any mechanical issues. If there is no self-test code and the customer concern is a miss, proceed to Step 1.......
Ed
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