1989 Dodge Omni 1989 Dodge Omni Doesnt start

Tiny
OMNINATION
  • 1989 DODGE OMNI

Engine Mechanical problem
1989 Dodge Omni 4 cyl Front Wheel Drive Automatic 13500 miles

Hey there fellow omni fanatics I just bought a 1989 dodge omni that when I bought it ran. But now from siting a bit while we got it street legal the car doesnt start. We have already bought a distributor cap and rotor for it and it didnt fix it. We have bought new spark plugs and wires and it didnt fix it. So I have run out of ideas. Maybe a new distributor in general will fix it. We tried the map sensor but itwas fine. If anyone has any ideas please let me know. Thanks. I also dont have a muffler on it but that to my knowledge wouldnt effect the car starting but what do I know. Please help if you can. I need this car to get to work!

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Wednesday, September 30th, 2009 AT 11:16 PM

20 Replies

Tiny
CH112063
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Hey omni man. I had 4 of them. How did you get an injected one? Sure I can help you. See if its getting gas. Cycle key for codes. Need help, tell me. Remember gas, codes, spark, timing belt, old beast. Beauty though. Joe

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Monday, October 5th, 2009 AT 9:35 AM
Tiny
OMNINATION
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Hey there I am a new driver fixing my car so could u please tell me how to check those things!

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Monday, October 5th, 2009 AT 10:08 AM
Tiny
CH112063
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Ok here we go. First, you have replaced secondary ignition. Except two things but first things first. Turn key car cranks, correct? Pull wire from cap center(coil wire), have buddy crank it, hold the coil wire(still connected to the coil and hold it 1/4 inch from good ground, like the head or valve cover, it should have a blue spark-high voltage caution, use care, and don, t lean your groin on the car either, it is very active. OK Then with coil connected again use light and look for fuel spray in bore of throttle body, key on. Then off, key on, should spray and crank with spark.
2 things down, let me know-Joe. The black distributor pick-up were bad alot, so make sure that is plugged in and the rotor turns while cranking also, cause the timing belt could be no good also.
Thats enough for now got to finish something, 7 EST. Ok Joe

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Monday, October 5th, 2009 AT 2:05 PM
Tiny
OMNINATION
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Hey there again mate. We have found out that when we wiggle to wires that run tot the distributer it stalls out the car. I dont know if this has any relation to what I have said but id like to see if u have any advice on the issue thanks

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Tuesday, October 6th, 2009 AT 4:32 PM
Tiny
CH112063
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Hi, yep, replace distributor pick up plate. They always went bad causing a tow-in. Keep the old one. No turbo, ok. They are different, get a good one. Ok you are a good troubleshooter, They rarely had a code. I wiggled a lot of those connectors.
Very easy to replace.

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Tuesday, October 6th, 2009 AT 7:02 PM
Tiny
OMNINATION
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Ok thanks for all the help man I am really thankful for all you have done. I will replace that part and if all goes good I will let you know! And if not ill post back on the site to see if we can get it all figured out and all! Thanks alot and I will post back asap!

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Tuesday, October 6th, 2009 AT 9:49 PM
Tiny
CH112063
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Change to Omni Start. That was a nice drive. Nothing driving it, was like the way it looked. That was my first real car for over 100.00. I wanted an injected one. But now I want a BMW, with no engine or anyway at all. Fat chance I'll ever drive a car like that. My nephew brought one over. I put a timing belt in it in an hour it was so nice and serviceable. Real nicely engineered. I am glad you found that. All those parts went bad. Let me kmow, I always check daily. I didn't know how the message posting worked, but I am getting there. Goodbye for now. Chirp the tires. Lol
The little four window like plate must be tight. In distributor. I peened down the plastic on mine but not on a customers. Later. Joe

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Wednesday, October 7th, 2009 AT 10:39 AM
Tiny
OMNINATION
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Hey there we tested the spark but there was no spark when we did the spark test. Coil does not seem to be receiving voltage from the ECU either. Should the coil be receiving a pulse signal from the ECU? Can a bad distributor be the cause of this issue?

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Thursday, October 15th, 2009 AT 12:56 PM
Tiny
CH112063
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Last time it stalled, what has been done? I remember you were going to change the pick-up in the distributor. Now what has been done? Did you replace it? Plugged it in, put on rotor and put on cap. What else? Coils should have 12-8 volts on positive side with key on, but the dwell time is controlled by its pulse(pick-up) so that dwell time is dependant on many inputs. Jump 12 volts to the coil positive. Tell me all the things you have
replaced. Did it ever run? Or did it not start after pick-up or belt or something else? Maybe a fuse link. Burnt. Coils usually stay coils, never hardly ever go bad.

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Thursday, October 15th, 2009 AT 1:40 PM
Tiny
OMNINATION
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Hey there good news we got the car up and running it sounds greats thanks for all the help. I just have one more question for now. We bought spark plugs the other day to drop into the car, but we came along the question what is the gap for the plugs? So I was wondering if you knew, because from my knowledge you are to set the gap for the plugs. So please let me know thanks.

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Saturday, October 24th, 2009 AT 5:32 PM
Tiny
CH112063
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Sure, .035. OK no problem

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Saturday, October 24th, 2009 AT 5:35 PM
Tiny
OMNINATION
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Hey there I just have one more question that came to my attention. Wondering at what minimum thickness do the brake disks need to be replaced?

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Saturday, October 24th, 2009 AT 6:18 PM
Tiny
CH112063
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At 140,000 miles they are not original. Their probably the second set at least. You must follow the rotor min. Thickness stamped on it. If their scored, replace.
Most of the braking is done in the fronts.
What is your measured specs in mm's or inches? In the thinnest area. I don't want to tell you another manufacturers specs.
Remove wheel, use rotor micrometer and get min. Also check for runout. Not much too those little rotors, so change em if any doubt. OK is it running alright?

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Sunday, October 25th, 2009 AT 10:04 PM
Tiny
OMNINATION
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Hey yes it starts right away the only thing we noticed is that it kinda putts while sitting so we think it might be the timing belt. But we arnt 100 percent sure. But we were wondering the thickness of the disks do you knwo the minimum? We will measure The rotors which are the disks right? And let you know but what would you say the thinist it should be? If yoyu had to give a rough estimate?

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Monday, October 26th, 2009 AT 10:12 AM
Tiny
CH112063
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Purring like a kitten? That is not bad. But putts, is not bad also. 89 omni. Twenty years old and it starts. Thats a "start". The thickness of the disk(rotor) is stamped on the rotor. As the factory installed them, each different supply may have been different So even the service manual will not commit on new ones, nevermind 20 year old brakes. Each rotor is tested(tight on preload) for.005 runout max. At 12 positions 1 inch from end. Any suspect, visual wear marks, or heat cracks or discoloration. New. Replaced. Brakes, steering, and fuel are not fooled with and this rule must be followed. OK Its much more important to stop, then go. As life goes. One day.
I've changed many. Cut some. Big expensive ones. Little omni brakes are cheaper to replace, then 100.00 hr. Labor for both.
Ok omni man. Good luck. Feel exhaust gas with palm of hand. What is making it Putt.

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Monday, October 26th, 2009 AT 11:06 AM
Tiny
OMNINATION
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Hello there So in relevance to your comment we still dont know what is making it putt. We changed the spark plugs and cabels, we can feel exaust when you put the palm of your hand infront of the muffle, its warm and all. We think it might need an oil change would that effect it? But either than that we think its either the oil or the timing belt is any of those two possibly the thing thats making it putt?

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Monday, October 26th, 2009 AT 1:33 PM
Tiny
CH112063
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The exhaust is steady and no smoke. GOOD
Exhaust has miss, or runs rough you can feel pulse(lean misfire), and little smoke.
Exhaust is smokey and blue(oil), white(water, coolant), or black(rich fuel) and putting or chugging, problem. Yes a valve timing problem will cause either lean or rich putting. The lack of unusual smoke is good. Not the heat your feeling for, Its the rythmic pulse.
Out here we also use an exhaust analyzer to tell, high HC is miss(raw fuel). High CO is rich. Try spraying water or a little carb. Cleaner in, if it smooths out its too lean. Give it a little vacuum leak, if it smooths out for a second or two its rich. The vacuum test should be near 18 at idle. The MAP sensor needs 18 at idle. Or 17. Does turning dist. Make any difference?
Remember, the timing must be set in open loop(coolant sensor disconnected) or its retarded. By 20 degrees, so give it 15 degrees and if its better, thats what may have happened.
You can be a tooth off on the timing belt. It can be timed up or down to idle better, but will not breathe right. No power. If you feel exhaust pressure, the catalytic converter's not clogged.
New pads, new rotors, grease bearings, head gasket, all need attention. The police always grab your garbage first, if they are investigating someone. Doc. Looks at stools. Dogs sniff arse. It is a quick internal check of a driveability complaint to look at the exhaust. Without a compression test. Before testdrive. An oil change if its dirty, always helps a car. Helps seal rings. Bearings.
Ok Horizon man, no, no Omni man. Sorry
I get em mixed up. M, Z, L, body.

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Monday, October 26th, 2009 AT 2:31 PM
Tiny
OMNINATION
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Hey there thanks for the quick reply I cant thank you enough for all the help you have given. We will check those items of interest taht you have mentioned and I will get back to you! Thanks again!

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Tuesday, October 27th, 2009 AT 10:10 AM
Tiny
CH112063
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17 hours, yep, 17 hours. Oh, sorry, I was just thinking how long it took me to find, and get rid of a wireless virus byte of info. That was hidden in my LAN driver. Is this normal? Malicious.
Why do you speak, as if this car is going to bring you in safely around your life forever. I am so glad to help YOU.
Your questions have brought help to me.
It's nice of you to say.
When I bring any car in, I'm not going to spend one cent of anyone's time or money on anything not worth a dollar.
So after 25 years, I can tell everything I need to know in a few minutes. Then I roadtest(if possible) and give customer the real picture. Let them decide if spending money on junk is even worth the effort and time of them.
So I knew this car was a survivor.
I owned one for 8 years. 2 of them.
If it runs ok fine. Your gonna need help. And if I'm gone, someone else will take my place. Thank whoever brought this site to bear on people's car trouble. Mechanics do this just for public safety, and to keep everyone happy. No fighting.
Anytime, for you. Just drive it like the older machine it is. Ok omniman.
Got a feeling of ownership on this car. Good. Always that way.

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Tuesday, October 27th, 2009 AT 6:49 PM
Tiny
CH112063
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Remember Rampage little pick-up? And Charger. All same as omni. Different body.
I was suprised it never caught on. And I was more suprised when the whole industry went to bigger engines, and cars. After the Omni pulled the industry out of a depression. Chrysler had friends in Germany. They copied VW Rabbit, and got license for 1.7L. Their 2.2L injected, was just great. GM, Ford, all came on with their front wheel drives. And you won't find any bigger then now.
The Intrepid was heavy for a front wheel drive. The 89 Omni was a real smooth idle. Did you get it figured out? Check the front driveshaft boots. Any sensor or part you have replaced, keep. In trunk or somewhere just in case.

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Thursday, October 29th, 2009 AT 8:05 PM

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