Check ENGINE LIGHT INDICATED MY

Tiny
CATHY STEWART
  • MEMBER
  • 1998 FORD CONTOUR
  • 2.0L
  • 4 CYL
  • AWD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 118,000 MILES
HAVE REPLACED BOTH & STILL NOT RUNNING WELL.

The car was running fine two months ago when the engine light first came on. It indicated my gas cap & the "camshaft positioning sensor" needed to be replaced. The cap I replaced in approximately 1 week time & the sensor I replaced 2 wks ago. (Struggling while unemployed right now) The car runs terrible right now. As if it lost half of it's compression. It is ok when the engine is cold, but about 2 miles down the road it acts like it is going to sputter & die at stop lights.

Even putting it in neutral at the light and revving the motor slightly or pumping the gas pedal does not temporarily cure the problem. It sounds as if someone is smothering the engine, or pulling vacuum lines as I try to accelerate from the stop lights. I try not to abuse my vehicles, but twice I have driven it in it's current condition & it's not healthy for it I am sure & it is going to cause an accident while sputtering across busy intersections. I also found what appears to be a "vacuum hose" that was not connected at one end. I have been unable to ID what it goes to or what it comes from!

However, no suction when engine is running, so I put a bolt in the end tied it up so it does not get tangled up with any moving parts. No change in how the car ran after I plugged the hose. It is approx. 18" - 24" long. It appears to be from a "boxy" part of the engine (lower front driver side) possibly above the drive train area, I am changing spark plugs & wires tomorrow to eliminate the possibility of those being the problem. My automotive vocabulary is not the best, but I can usually find the problem or replace the part myself understand its function. I don't have a lot of trust left or the $$ to have anyone else look at it. About 6 months ago the transmission pump went out & cost me a tranny rebuild to the tune of $2600.00 at AAMCO. I debated the strength of the vehicle's engine for many days before I ok'd repairs on it.

I can't believe there is no warning light or "check Tranny" light that comes on when that happens! Just a strong odor of tranny fluid while running down I17, then a white smoke cloud trailing behind me until I could pull over. I mention this in case it may be a part of the reason the car is running so bad now. It is all I have right now, and it MUST be in running condition. I appreciate any suggestions at this time. My main purpose for finding your website was to pull copies of the vacuum lines showing their locations & to possibly find a copy of the diagram for the motor I have in my car. I have a feeling that vacuum line has a lot to do with its performance lately. Thank you for your time! Sincerely, Cathy Stewart

My VIN # : 1FAFP6633WK288044 1998 FORD CONTOUR 2.0L AUTOMATIC
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Monday, May 5th, 2014 AT 5:43 AM

4 Replies

Tiny
WRENCHTECH
  • EXPERT
First off, have a code that refers to a specific sensor does not mean the sensor is the actual cause. It can be anything in the circuit or even mechanical issues. The engine really needs to be diagnosed properly to determine what is going on. You can can any number of issues with it.
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Monday, May 5th, 2014 AT 6:47 AM
Tiny
CATHY STEWART
  • MEMBER
Thank you for responding to my original question/problem with my 1998 Ford Contour. I understand your reply completely regarding a complete diagnosis (preferably by a mechanic, but I am the only mechanic I can afford at this time) & needing to start at Step 1 to make sure the basic engine functions are in wrkg order to begin analyzing the the more difficult symptoms. , Checking & cleaning the spark plugs did not help the performance, still sluggish. Plugs 1 & 4 were ok in gap & grayish appearance, however, 2 & 3 were caked with grayish baked on matter (carbon residue I guess?) I have not yet found a home for the other end of the hanging vacuum hose. I hope you can help with that. I asked Auto Zone & took the picture of the metal cover or canister that one end of the hose was attached to (just under my battery, front driver's side of engine, where transaxle/tranny is.) He said it could be the "ventilation hose" that some trannies have, only an extra long one so no dirt can get in. I'm not a mechanic by trade, but I never heard of that before.
I am attaching pics of this part with the hose coming off the top. I need to know where the other end attaches, if you can ID it from the pic. The hose is right next to my lime green pointer in the picture!
Thank you.
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Friday, May 9th, 2014 AT 1:28 AM
Tiny
WRENCHTECH
  • EXPERT
It's hard to tell because I can't see what that line is connected to biut it may be a vapor hose connected to the charcoal canister. If that is the case, then it could be connected to a purge solenoid and from there tom the intake to re-bur tank fumes.
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Friday, May 9th, 2014 AT 2:20 AM
Tiny
WRENCHTECH
  • EXPERT
https://www.2carpros.com/images/external/78104212.gif
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Friday, May 9th, 2014 AT 2:22 AM

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