1984 Other Ford Models Ignition switch wiring problem?

Tiny
PJ614
  • MEMBER
  • 1984 FORD
  • V8
  • 4WD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 120,000 MILES
I have an 84 Lincoln Town Car. It has 120,000 miles. The night before I heard a couple of putters while driving home. The next morning my car wouldn't start. It isn't firing. I have had the electrical box on the distributor checked and they said it passed. The mechanic hooked up a new coil and it still didn't start. He is thinking it may be the wiring in the ignition switch. Is there anything else we can check easily to see if that is the problem, or is there something else we should check? There were a few times in the beginning of trying to just turn the key and start the car that it seemed to try to fire as I was turning the key back to the off position from it being turned all the way on (trying to start). Right when the car was at the last movements of the turn back from starting to on (to listen to music), the car would sound like it was trying to start. Any ideas? What should I tell the mechanic to look at.
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Sunday, April 12th, 2009 AT 12:06 PM

8 Replies

Tiny
JAMES W.
  • MEMBER
Do you have 12 volts at the plus side of the ignition coil with "key on"? Then, check the plus side again with the key in "start" position? Let me know and we can go from there.
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Sunday, April 12th, 2009 AT 6:56 PM
Tiny
PJ614
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I only have the friend of my brother's working on the car. He changed out the ignition switch but the car is still doing the same thing, on the turn back if you go slow and find the right spot it will try to start. He did say when he hooked this thing with a light up to the ignition switch the light would be on but when he turns the key to start the car the red light goes out - does that mean anything>
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Tuesday, April 14th, 2009 AT 12:00 PM
Tiny
JAMES W.
  • MEMBER
Change the ignition module. These modules have a "start" and a "run" circuit. Apparently your start circuit is bad. This is a common problem in the mid 80's ford products.
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Tuesday, April 14th, 2009 AT 4:49 PM
Tiny
PJ614
  • MEMBER
If that is the piece that is attached to the distributor cap we took it to autozone and it passed the test. Its a rectangular metal piece that we had to buy a deep socket piece for it. When he took it off he had to twist the distributor cap housing thing to get to it completely. If its a different part let me know and I will tell him
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Tuesday, April 14th, 2009 AT 5:28 PM
Tiny
JAMES W.
  • MEMBER
Yes, you have the right part. It's called a PFI module. Sometimes these will test good, depending on who is doing the testing.
Be fore we go and buy a new one, let's do what I should have had you do before. Plug the module back in and actually check for spark. If I'm correct, you will get no spark on cranking, but 1 or 2 when you let off the key. Let me know.
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Tuesday, April 14th, 2009 AT 6:41 PM
Tiny
PJ614
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You are exactly right upon turning on the car to start no spark but between the end of thre and two or between one and two I can't remember, you can catch a "sweet spot" and the car will spark but it won't actually start as soon as you go frontward or backward of that exact spot the car stops sparking
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Tuesday, April 14th, 2009 AT 6:54 PM
Tiny
PJ614
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Just in case I didn't say, advanced auto tested it three times in a row and it passed. I know about the class action suit and I believe this was the piece involved - right? I don't know about cars, but I tried to tell them about this and that it was a common problem in my car. Of course they didn't listen and once I saw it passed I moved on. How else can it be tested?
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Tuesday, April 14th, 2009 AT 7:04 PM
Tiny
JAMES W.
  • MEMBER
Well, the "sure fire" way to tell is to plug the module back in and just put in one screw to ground it and turn the key to crank. Checking one plug wire, if you've got spark we look else where. Again, let me know.'
EDIT; I just had another thought. It's just possible, kinda' sorta' maybe, it could be the pickup coil inside the distributor. I can't remember ever having to change one. But, just maybe. If you plug the module back in and have no spark, I'll copy the PU coil resistance test for you.
What motor do you have? The 3.8???


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Tuesday, April 14th, 2009 AT 8:40 PM

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