I've been having a time with my 2001 Sable. I recently changed out the
plugs/ wires as the car has 125K miles and the plugs hadn't been
changed. The car at idle seems kind of rough and I thought the plugs
would improve things, but that didn't happen. I borrowed a friend's
cheap code meter and no codes were shown and the readings I saw looked
normal, maybe a slightly elevated long term fuel reading but otherwise
ok. I also have a '00 Taurus with the same engine, but it at idle is
much smoother and there doesn't seem to be much difference in OBD
Any ideas as to the rough idle?
If you are looking at the car with a scan tool, it probably is very limited
in what it will tell you. Scan tools generally only give fault codes when
the Check Engine light is on, and might provide freeze frame data of the
conditions that existed at the moment the fault was detected. If the tool is
up-scale, it might give live data.
An excellent value these days is an ELM327 module that you can find on eBay,
and an ap for your phone. There is a lot of discussion about the Torque Pro
ap that costs $4.95, but there are other aps also. You can experiment with
the Torque Lite ap for free. The modules come in a wifi version and a
bluetooth version. They will talk to the phone/tablet of your choice, and
you choice will be weighted on whether the ap[ works with Apple or Android,
which is driven by your phone/tablet. You can get the module for 20-ish
dollars, and with the paid ap you will have under 30 dollars invested and
can collect mountains of data. The module plugs into the OBD II data port.
For thle engine that runs rough, if you do not find joy in the electronic
diagnostics, you ushould give serious consideration to a compression test.
You almost read my mind, Jeff. I just got a hold of a OBDLink SX which
I believe contains the module you speak of. They have OBDwiz software,
but a friend is going to let me use his laptop which has one of their
pro software versions. I'm hoping to find out something beyond what a
simple scanner shows. Will keep you posted. Thanks.
Check out FORScan, a free software scanner exclusively for Ford, Mercury,
Lincoln and Mazda vehicles that works with ELM327 and OBDLink adapters on
Windows and iOS v6.0 platforms. forscan.org
Besides reading codes and data, it can also run manufacturer diagnostic
tests and service procedures that normally require dealer equipment.
Ok, I ran both the ScanXL Pro and Forscan programs. I choose a bunch of
PIDS with special emphasis on fuel trims and injectors. I took a short
highway trip and recorded data with each program separately. With
ScanXL, at least two of the injectors momentarily change from no fault
to fault at random times while driving; with Forscan, all injectors stay
at no fault. So now I don't know what to believe.
You can swap a faulty injector with one of the known good ones and see if
the fault follows the injector. But first I would unplug and replug the
connectors on the faulty injectors to make sure it's not just a bad
connection. What PID is showing the faults and what is it measuring?
Ford had some issues with latter 3.0L heads with valve seat issues.
Your does not seem new enough to be in this lot, but anything is possible.
You need to do a leakdown and compression test and see what you
come up with.
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