1990 Ford Tempo 1990 Tempo does not start

Tiny
CHRIS2009TAYLOR
  • MEMBER
  • 1990 FORD TEMPO
  • 4 CYL
  • 2WD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 79,000 MILES
Oct. 24/09


Hello,

I was wondering if someone has some experience with “1990 Ford Tempo" it is “model L".
2.3 L, automatic tran. Vin # 1FABP35X1LK234531. Odometer reading is 127,000 km (78,000 miles). The problem is that it doesn’t start and the problem wasn’t gradual, but all of a sudden… It was working fine one minute and then not starting the next. It sounds like it will, but doesn’t kick over… It doesn’t seem to be firing in the cylinder.
The vehicle has now sat for 4 months and the problem is exactly the same (yes, no secret fix-it gremlins snuck into my garage and fixed the problem…hmmmm). I mention this as it eliminates the idea that it could be flooded. I have confirmed that there is spark going to the cylinders (spark plugs). It also seems that there may be gas present in the cylinders as I can smell it when I remove the spark plugs and they seem wet.
Are there some easy checks that I can do to confirm that it is not “fuel delivery" related?

I found two trouble codes from the “key on engine off" section of the codes and they were

21 – Coolant temperature sensor out of specified range and
Engine temperature coolant out of specified range.
24 - Air charge temperature low

If this sensor isn’t functioning properly, could that cause my engine not to start?
If this sensor is functioning properly, could that mean that the thermostat is not working and could that cause my engine not to start?
In the old days, the engine would have still started… but perhaps the (EEC) computer that controls the throttle mechanisms will not let the Air/fuel reach the cylinder.

I had another tempo (1990, but a manual tran.) That had the same codes come up 21, 24 only the car would turn over and run for a short period of time (3-6 minutes) and then die. The problem then was an ignition module. I don’t think it is this as I am getting spark at the cylinder, but could this also be what needs replacing?

Any advice will be helpful,

Thanks,

Chris
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Monday, October 26th, 2009 AT 12:26 PM

6 Replies

Tiny
FIXITMR
  • MEMBER
Put new plugs and a new cpu temp sensor and try it again. I have solved more no start problems with tempos by just putting new plugs it makes me confounded! Also let cylinders dry out before put new plugs in afterr remove old 1s. Have you tried holding pedal to floor when starting?
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Monday, October 26th, 2009 AT 1:11 PM
Tiny
CHRIS2009TAYLOR
  • MEMBER
You are refering to the (code 21) - replace Coolant temperature sensor? I had replaced the spark plugs already. And "yes" I had held the gas petal all the way down.

Replacing the Coolant temperature sensor probably involves a bit of work - removing some anti-freeze etc. It is located on the same casting as the thermostat; isn't it?

Is there a possibility it is "fuel related". I can do a quick check if the gas is making it at least to the fuel filter, as suggested elsewhere in this forum.
Could I also check if the fuel injectors are squirting by taking out those "new"spark plugs and seeing if they are wet and have gas on them?

Thanks "fixitmr"for the comment, by the way!

Chris
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Tuesday, October 27th, 2009 AT 1:13 PM
Tiny
FIXITMR
  • MEMBER
There's no way to tell actual milage on a tempo since the odometer rolls over at 99,000. I have a high mileage tempo(200,000+) that began starting hard(hold to floor) and then not at all and I got it running by putting a cut off switch on fuel pump circuit. Dont know why it's getting to much fuel but holding the switch till it starts then letting go works! So if you have wet cylinders try disabling pump and holding to floor till it starts? If it starts and runs for a second then for some reason you are getting to much fuel at start. There's a safety cutoff switch in trunk drivers side behind liner. Pull plug. Or a think there's a relay/fuse too.
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Wednesday, October 28th, 2009 AT 10:07 PM
Tiny
CHRIS2009TAYLOR
  • MEMBER
November 6/09

I don't have mileage, but rather kilometers!
You got it running by putting a cut off switch on fuel pump circuit. If I'm getting too much fuel at start, wouldn't that mean that the injectors are not working properly?
Or possibly, that the pressure in the fuel line was too much(ie: greater than 65 psi)?
What was your fuel pressure like when you decided to put in the switch?
Where is the relay located?
Where is the relay fuse located?

Reluctant to keep changing things that are not the problem. I would prefer to properly diagnose the problem first.

Thanks,

Chris
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Thursday, November 5th, 2009 AT 2:01 PM
Tiny
CHRIS2009TAYLOR
  • MEMBER
Tempo 1990 - not starting

anyone else have any ideas. It's still not starting!
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Friday, November 27th, 2009 AT 5:41 PM
Tiny
FIXITMR
  • MEMBER
Did you deactivate fuel pump and try holding to the floor? If you are getting GOOD spark that should do it. It should sputter or run for a few seconds. If you cant deactivate electrically you can separate hose at filter and put in jar or can. I would find and trip/pull plug on crash relay in trunk behind trunk liner brace on drivers side.
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Monday, November 30th, 2009 AT 11:27 PM

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