1997 Plymouth



February, 4, 2008 AT 12:51 PM

Engine problem
1997 Other Plymouth Models 4 cyl Two Wheel Drive Automatic 193, 80 miles

Car runs great, and gets about 26 MPG on the road. There is no hesitation and runs smooth. SL came on in December, mechanic said misfire code, replaced plugs and plug wires. SL came on again in January, mechanic said misfire code, replaced PCV Valve and hose. SL came on again late January. OBD11 codes were p0420, p0300, p0301, p0303, and p0304. Failed Ca Smog test due to HC being over the max when tested at 25 MPH. (Max 49 - result 56). Erased codes and have put on 150 miles since then and OBD11 scan says PASS on everything, and NO CODES.
How do I bring the HC readings down? And what could be other reasons it was higher on the 25 MPH test but passed the 15 MPH test?
The code p0420 says the catalyst efficiency is below threshhold. Does that mean that the catalytic converter needs to be replaced?
Any help would be deeply appreciated.

6 Answers



February, 4, 2008 AT 2:04 PM

That is pretty much what it means. Depending on your readings, the cat might not be doing enough to clean it up, that is why the code and the failed emission test



February, 4, 2008 AT 2:06 PM

Is the 420 code still gone? Or is it back? Yes it does mean the converter and a posible sensor 02 downstream of the cat. It means that 02 sensor is switching between rich and lean too much. You can cut the HC's by changing the oil, and plugs. Don't know if you can cut it enough tho. You also want to make sure that misfire problem is fixed, before the new cat goes in, it could destroy it!



February, 4, 2008 AT 2:14 PM

Would replacing the cat stop the codes for misfire also? The car runs so nicely, we can't figure out why it is coding the misfires. The plugs on it are the Bosch 100,000 mile ones. We had those on it before and they looked good when we replaced them. We are going to replace the ignition coil with either a Accel or MSB and see if that helps anything. I guess we'll replace the cat too. We're just still wondering about the misfire codes.
Thanks for your help.



February, 4, 2008 AT 2:16 PM

Misfires can be caused by worn or fouled spark plugs, a weak spark (weak coil, bad spark plug wire), loss of compression, vacuum leaks, anything that causes an unusually lean fuel mixture (lean misfire), an EGR valve that is stuck open, dirty fuel injectors, low fuel pressure, or even bad fuel.

A Random Misfire code usually indicates a vacuum leak or bad gas.

If a misfire in a specific cylinder should lead you to check the spark plug, fuel injector and compression.

Hydrocarbon failures mean unburned gasoline is passing through the engine and entering the exhaust. The three most common causes include ignition misfire, lean misfire and low compression (typically a burned exhaust valve). Ignition misfire can be caused by worn or fouled spark plugs, bad plug wires or a weak coil. Lean misfire results where there is too much air and not enough fuel, so check for vacuum leaks, dirty injectors or a fuel delivery problem. In addition to these, hydrocarbon failures can also be caused by oil burning due to worn valve guides, valve guide seals and/or rings.

P0420- could be the catalytic converter or the oxygen sensor/s switching activity



February, 4, 2008 AT 2:20 PM

We deleted the codes before we took it in for smog test. We have driven about 150 miles since the smog test and code deletes, and the OBD scan says NO CODES and PASSES. We had an oil change and service just before we took it for smog test also.

So far it is saying 'no codes'. How do we know if it still misfires? If we have a catalytic converter put on it, and it starts coding misfire again, what do we do to check that first?

Thanks for your help.



February, 4, 2008 AT 2:24 PM

Bosch Platinums? Worst plug on the market. Put the originals in it

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