1997 FORD THUNDERBIRD V-6

  • Tiny
  • Bffbpete
  • 1997 FORD THUNDERBIRD
  • 6 CYL
  • 2WD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 47,000 MILES

I have a 1997 Ford T-Bird with 47,000 miles and V-6 motor. While driving at approx. 45mph it missed once, then again, then a couple of times then just quit. While turning the motor over, it didn't fire AT ALL, initially. It has a completely full fuel tank, I even added a bottle of HEET to rule out crappy fuel. While checking for a spark at the plug, alone, looking through the windshield and hood hinge gap, it appeared there was no spark but, I couldn't see well. While turning it over with the plug wire disconnected the engine started up. I re-installed the plug and wire and it started and ran fine then shut off. It will start, after many tries, then run fine and shut off. It shuts off just like you turned the key off. No sputtering or anything like that. It goes from running just fine to off, just like someone shut off the spark. The DTC says it was running lean at 43mph. I cleared the code by disconnecting the battery, ran it several times and could not get any other codes to pop up. The check engine light has been on for several weeks. I cleared it and it comes back on after driving the vehicle two or three times. I just assumed an O2 sensor was failing. I am thinking the PCM, the MAF or the Cam Position Sensor. Am I on the right track? And if so, how do I troubleshoot it to the correct component?

Thanks,
Pete

Also. I have been running 89 octane due to pinging during acceleration, (leads me to the MAF)the night before the car quit I filled up with 87 octane. The car has been running perfect prior to this problem.

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Wednesday, June 1st, 2011 AT 1:02 AM

24 Replies

  • Tiny
  • Fixitmr
  • MEMBER

Quit while driving is usually cam/crank sensor.

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Wednesday, June 1st, 2011 AT 2:09 AM
  • Tiny
  • Bffbpete
  • MEMBER

Thanks! That's what I bought, I'll install it and get back with ya if it doesn't fix it. Appreciate the response.

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Wednesday, June 1st, 2011 AT 2:19 AM
  • Tiny
  • Bffbpete
  • MEMBER

Ok, where is it? Hahaha, I looked all around, parts place said it was on the lower right side, nothing there as far as I can tell. I found one thing on-line, this must be a well kept Ford secret. A guy said it was under the coil pack, under what you would think is the distributor. Something about disconnecting a water line and setting it to 26deg ATC. Can ya clear this up for me? Where's it at? And, is there anything I have to do besides R&R the part? Thanks, Pete

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Wednesday, June 1st, 2011 AT 8:25 AM
  • Tiny
  • Fixitmr
  • MEMBER

Which one, crank or cam sensor?

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Wednesday, June 1st, 2011 AT 7:00 PM
  • Tiny
  • Bffbpete
  • MEMBER

Thought they were the same thing, hell, might as well tell me where both are. Knowing me it will be the crank sensor since I bought the cam sensor. Also, is it just an R&R or is there anything I have to do so the sensor knows where it is?

Thanks for the help, I appreciate it!
Pete

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Wednesday, June 1st, 2011 AT 9:02 PM
  • Tiny
  • Fixitmr
  • MEMBER

I was gonna say CKP more likely than CMP? But it's just a guess since no relative codes thrown. The wiring plugs are known issues.

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Thursday, June 2nd, 2011 AT 7:33 AM
  • Tiny
  • Bffbpete
  • MEMBER

Yea, I changed the Cam Sensor, made my finger bleed but, that was about it. I don't know what I was thinking, of course the crank and cam are different. So I guess I'll try the crank sensor next. I'll check those web pages ya sent too. I don't know why it won't spit out a code kinda irritating! Thanks!

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Thursday, June 2nd, 2011 AT 10:40 PM
  • Tiny
  • Fixitmr
  • MEMBER

Hows it going?

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Monday, June 6th, 2011 AT 10:39 PM
  • Tiny
  • Bffbpete
  • MEMBER

I picked up a crank sensor. Actually, the guy sold me the crank sensor first I guess and now I have a cam sensor. I think. Ya think the people at the car parts place would know SOMETHING. So, I have one sensor that is straight with about a 45 degree angle and a magnet in it and one that is round or circular with a depression in it like a very small distributor cap. No wires on top, I mean it looks like it fits on top of something if that makes any sense. I haven't had a chance to try and find where the heck this one is located yet though, very busy at work. Thanks for following up with me, I appreciate that! Do ya know where this sensor is located?

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Tuesday, June 7th, 2011 AT 9:04 PM
  • Tiny
  • Fixitmr
  • MEMBER

The round thingy is the cam sensor. Should be under the coil thingy where your plug wires come from front top left of engine?

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Thursday, June 9th, 2011 AT 9:55 PM

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