Car has code P1131, but I think it's unrelated?

Tiny
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  • 1998 FORD CONTOUR
  • 120,000 MILES
Why would tachometer go to zero when A/C is turned on, then when car is turned off it won't start. Wait 5 mins and starts right up. Ok, so today I went down and replaced alternator, positive battery cable. Turned car over and started right up, left it to warm up to duplicate daughters driving. Took it to get gas, filled it up and took it to freeway to 75 MPH. Before I left gas station, turned on A/C and lights.

Took car to freeway to 75 MPH, 5 miles later, tach goes to zero. Tried to restart and battery acted like it had no juice. Waited 5 mins, starts right up. Drive off, turn A/c on, tach goes to zero, turn A/C offend tach floated from 1000-1500 then went to zero. Got home turned the car off, tried to restart, acted like there was no juice, waited a few mins, started right up. What did I miss?

Last week the fuel pump was replaced.

Two days ago blown fuse for instrument cluster was pulled and replaced with spare from fuse box.

Car did idle rough a few days ago, idles much smoother now. I know I'm missing something obvious.

Thanks for the help
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Friday, May 18th, 2012 AT 9:03 PM

9 Replies

Tiny
RASMATAZ
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Check what caused the instrument cluster fuse to blow. Next time it refuses to start don't wait-look for fuel and spark immediately this will tell you something
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Friday, May 18th, 2012 AT 10:09 PM
Tiny
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Rasmataz, thanks for the info. But that's not what I need. What would cause it first of all? Why would an instrument illumination fuse being blown have to do with an analog tachometer which should be fed straight from the sensor to the dash, those two don't relate. Why would a tach go from reading correctly to zero when the A/C is turned on? Next how do you check if the A/C relay or A/C clutch relay would be bad?

Just a few minutes ago, I started the car, started right up after acting like it was bad, ad the idle started hunting around and surging, looking for the right speed.

Could all these things trickle down to each other? As in a domino effect? Breaking parts as I go down the line looking for the next part? Looks like the next thing is the O2 sensor, fuel filter and maybe some MAF cleaner.
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Friday, May 18th, 2012 AT 10:36 PM
Tiny
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Go this walk thru link:http://www.2carpros.com/articles/car-cranks-but-wont-start
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Friday, May 18th, 2012 AT 10:50 PM
Tiny
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Engine cranks over if left to sit for a few minutes, then the tach shuts off, then idle starts bouncing, I assume looking for right compensation. I assume the most likely culprit would be vacuum leak, clogged fuel filter/supply/return line, bad O2 sensor, EGR, dirty MAG sensor. Maybe even the IAC. Still doesn't explain the tach shutting off when A/C is turned on.

Will replace fuel filter, check clogs, and clean MAF sensor.

Already turned engine on, listened for leaks, no whistles. Will get some throttle body cleaner and try and clean that as well.

Still don't understand the tac, isn't it it's own system, aeperate from everything else?
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Saturday, May 19th, 2012 AT 4:36 AM
Tiny
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On some vehicle the crankshaft position sensor is use to track the engine speed or the ignition control module
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Saturday, May 19th, 2012 AT 4:51 PM
Tiny
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I don't that's it either. If that was bad I wouldn't get any spark and engine would either not turn over or shut off if it failed. Us no code for that. I do have an 1131 and a 0102 code. Neither really apply to tach. However those might apply to rough idle and searching for right speed.
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Sunday, May 20th, 2012 AT 2:25 AM
Tiny
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Could be the computer tachometer circuit, wiring or the tachometer itself on the cluster

The computer uses the CPS input to calculate the engine speed then sending it to the cluster tachometer-I know what you are trying to say
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Sunday, May 20th, 2012 AT 3:11 AM
Tiny
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So I'm going to try and break this down for as many people out there looking for real answers. 1998 contour kept stalling out and dying, took several jumps over a couple of days. Turned out fuel pump was bad. Took it to ford dealer and had it replaced, warranty. $1100. My price 350, not covered. Still cheaper than the part itself. Brought it home, ran ok for a few days. Stalled out again and brought it home. Battery was shot, replaced it for $100. Car couldn't keep a charge, took alternator in and tested it, yup, bad alternator, $175. Thought bcu. Cables were loose sent power surges back and forth and killed both bcuz that can happen too. Kept searching the Internet. Replaced positive battery lead, cleaned MAF, cleaned throttle body, replaced spark plugs, wires were good, $45. Put car back together, jumped it. Took negative jumper off, tachometer dropped, put it back on, tach came back up. Appears there is a mega fuse, 175 amp, under the air box just below throttle body that was the culprit. That $11 fuse getting ready to blow sent power surges to almost every electrical system causing them to fail. I started out with codes P0102 and P1131. The tach and air flow had nothing to do with this put could have saved $600 had I known to check an $11 part. I still have the P1131 code and now have a P1381 code. Will check VCT next, replace timing belt maybe even replace the O2 sensor and see where it takes me. I'm not an expert mechanic at all. Worked on cars here and there but with pictures I could have walked my 17 yr old daughter thru all of this.
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Tuesday, May 22nd, 2012 AT 2:42 AM
Tiny
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Thanks for coming back with the fix we sure appreciated
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Tuesday, May 22nd, 2012 AT 2:47 AM

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