Hi, wondering what the engine gurus thought might
be the cause of this problem I've encountered on
my old 1987 IROC with the LB9 305 TPI engine. The
engine ran fine for years, and has about 134,000 on
Now it would always start instantly with the flick
of the ignition key (even under the coldest winter
mornings - gotta love TPI !).
But recently, it became intermittently hard to start,
just turning the key would only crank it, I had to
literally floor the accelerator while cranking to get
it to run, and then gradually let up on the pedal or
it would sputter and quit.
What's strange is I left the car indoors in my garage
for a week or so (used my wifes car that week), and
went to start it, and it fired up perfectly on the first
turn of the key.
Drove it to work, car sat outdoors all day, came out to
start it and it was back to the floor-pedal-while-cranking
routine. Engine again was almost sputtering out if I took
my foot of the pedal, after a minute or two, it ran okay.
BUT, under the hood, I noticed the odor of gas. I checked
for visible leaks, didn't see any - under the hood or under
Drove it home, while driving, the gas gauge dropped from
3/4 tank down to empty in the span of only 10 miles ! made
it to a gas station by sheer luck.
Now starting it up, (again hard start), it runs very rough,
and will quit unless I keep my foot on the pedal above idle.
The exhaust will blow out HUGE clouds of white smoke.
The oil level is fine, looks clean (ie. no water in oil),
no odd mechanical noises coming from engine, no leaks of
any sort visible.
I parked it, and well probably flat bed it to a local shop
to have them diagnose it, unless the engine/mechanical gurus
in this newsgroup can think of something obvious I can check
that I might be able to DIY repair it.
I recently replaced spark plugs and distributor cap and
rotor, and wires, but this was months ago, and after doing
that I actually drove the car from NYC to Miami without a
hint of any problems, So I don't think it's anything I did,
since this problem just developed out of the blue.
I have the shop manual and will attempt to troubleshoot it,
but without a scan tool, it's going to be difficult.
Why the car consumed 3/4 of a tank of fuel in 10 miles is
obviously related to the problem of it blowing out huge
clouds of white smoke, but I'm not sure what type of engine
part failure would cause that.
Any thoughts or suggestions appreciated,