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PostPosted: Fri Apr 13, 2018 5:21 pm 
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Joined: Tue May 10, 2011 3:47 pm
Posts: 34
Location: Moon Township, PA
Year and Trim: 2000 Pontiac Bonneville SLE, GM 3800 Series V6
Hey, everyone:

Thanks to all who've helped on my previous posts (issues). I have a new one.

2000 Bonneville SLE, 3800 Series V6, VIN K. I went to take her over for inspection, and not 1/2 mile from the house started feeling a misfire condition. The SES light came on blinking, went off, came on solid, went off, came on blinking, went off, etc., etc., etc.

Brought the car back home and started looking into what might be happening. Now, since I don't have and OBDII reader and the (Advanced) Auto (Zone) down the street won't loan 'em out, I ordered one today on Amazon (along with an HEI Spark Tester). In the meantime, I went to work on what I COULD get done on a nice spring afternoon (Friday the 13th, no less).

So I checked resistance and signal cycling on my Fuel Injectors. (Oddly enough, both Advanced and Auto Zone will give you a loaner on a noid light kit). All is well with the injectors. Visually - and with my Ohmmeter - checked the spark plug wires on cyls 1, 3, and 5 (see below). All is well there, too.

I haven't checked the wires on cyls 2, 4, and 6 simply because I'll need a helper to, you know, help me get to them. (Question: Who the hell ever engineered the sideways-mounted 3800 series engine? Is that person still employed?) Anyway, HOWEVER...

I found a crack on the barrel of my cyl 1-4 ignition coil. It starts on the top of the barrel and goes down along the length of the barrel and turns sharply right about 1/4 inch away from the cyl #4 spark tower. The crack is just wide enough for me to inset the tip of my fingernail.

Could this be the evil culprit? I suppose I could wait until Monday for the OBD reader to be delivered and check if cyl 4 has the misfire, but I'd like to have the car on this first lovely weekend of the season.

I guess my question is, "Must I replaced the cracked coil anyway (methinks I should), or should I just wait to test everything else out?"

And, if it's not an ignition system problem itself, anything else I could be checking in the meantime?

***EDIT: One thing to keep in mind is that I'm between jobs, so money is tight. The less I'd have to spend initially, the better. ***

All opinions are both welcome and appreciated.

Thanks in advance.

E.


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 13, 2018 8:04 pm 
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Posts like an L67
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Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2010 11:11 pm
Posts: 1588
Location: Ontario, Canada
Year and Trim: 2000 Bonniville SSEi L67
hi, that cracked piece is the insulation for the coil post - yes it may cause the coil to arc to nearest ground, thereby reducing spark and causing a miss - I would replace that coil pack. ( I would experiment with JB weld if in a bind to fill the crack).

idle with hood open in the dark and you will see it arc.

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poverty forces one to do unorthodox things

2000 SSEi
past rides:
1996 SSEi
1992 GTP
1987 Grand Am


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PostPosted: Sat Apr 14, 2018 11:24 pm 
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Joined: Tue May 10, 2011 3:47 pm
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Location: Moon Township, PA
Year and Trim: 2000 Pontiac Bonneville SLE, GM 3800 Series V6
Hey 96 SSEI:

Took your suggestion and checked for arcing on my 1-4 coil last night. Nothing. I was gonna get another coil but the backside bolt (nearest the spark towers) is rotted away, so I've either gotta drill it out or something (usually it's something). And since the resistance across the towers is OK, I'm gonna use your JB-Weld fix temporarily.

And - Amazon Prime got me my ODBII reader this morning!

So I hooked it up and I'm getting P0303 misfire code (MIL, Stored, and Pending). When I went to pull the plug boot on #3 (which I'd tested resistance on yesterday), the wire inside the boot snapped and the connector stayed on the plug. So a wire kit and some plugs are next on the list.

Another thing. Folks are saying to clean the MAF sensor and upstream screen? I know I can spray out the screen easily enough, but I've never pulled the MAF sensor. Any precautions or advice? (Gotta get some of those "security Torx bits" to unhitch it, but they're cheap enough).

As always, all advice is appreciated.


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PostPosted: Sun Apr 15, 2018 12:09 am 
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Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2010 11:11 pm
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Location: Ontario, Canada
Year and Trim: 2000 Bonniville SSEi L67
try the closest sae or metric socket and tap it securely and maybe you get lucky

you can always file/grind the head of the bolt

the maf is torx screw with a centre nipple - sand/file the nipple down and a regular hex/allen key will work.

the wiring harness from the firewall to front bank has vacuum lines hidden underneath - thin like pasta - dont put pressure on the harness and be careful of lines and you should be good - always keep the longest good old wires just for contingency sake..one for each bank.

_________________
poverty forces one to do unorthodox things

2000 SSEi
past rides:
1996 SSEi
1992 GTP
1987 Grand Am


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 20, 2018 6:36 pm 
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Joined: Tue May 10, 2011 3:47 pm
Posts: 34
Location: Moon Township, PA
Year and Trim: 2000 Pontiac Bonneville SLE, GM 3800 Series V6
96 SSEi:

Got my plugs and new wires this afternoon (Fri). In the meantime, I picked up some of those "Security Torx" bits at Harbor Freight ($8.99 for a sturdy set of 6). MAF Sensor came off just fine. Gave it and the intake screen a good couple of spritzes of MAF cleaner and reinstalled. Couldn't believe the amount of funk on the screen. Maybe I have to replace the air filter more often than recommended.

Anyway, I figured that pulling the alternator will allow me to easily reach across the back plug boots and heat shields. Since I'm going to put a bypass pulley on for my A/C compressor I'll have to take the belt off, and I figured "What the hell? Why not?"

Again, thanks for your help thus far. If I run out of ideas/patience/money/sanity, I'll be back.

Regards,

E.


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PostPosted: Fri May 04, 2018 9:23 pm 
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Joined: Tue May 10, 2011 3:47 pm
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Location: Moon Township, PA
Year and Trim: 2000 Pontiac Bonneville SLE, GM 3800 Series V6
So I got the "hidden" plugs and the associated wiring replaced and all squared away. (If you've got long arms, or a friend with a pair, pulling the alternator works just fine.) Also got the cracked IC off and replaced that, too (thanks, 96 SSei!)

The DTC for the misfire on cylinder 3 went away, but I had a few NCM lights on my code reader. Took the car for several drive cycles and cleared all monitors but one - the one for the EVAP monitor.

On top of that, I get a rough idle on a cold start. Once I goose the engine a couple of times the problem goes away. At this point I figure I'm having cascading problems, or just an F'd-up dirty Idle Air Control.

So, two questions:

Can anyone point me to a definitive method for cleaning the IAC? And, more importantly;

Will that pending EVAP monitor flag keep me from getting passed on my emissions test in PA? And if so, (alright, three questions) where do I find a way to fix it (or fudge it) so's I can pass?

As always, no suggestion is too out of line.

Best regards,

E.


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PostPosted: Sat May 05, 2018 11:55 am 
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Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2010 11:11 pm
Posts: 1588
Location: Ontario, Canada
Year and Trim: 2000 Bonniville SSEi L67
what #code is pending? you have to google emission requirements in your state - they vary. plus the pending code should be looked into before it sets - dont wait for the test give yourself ample time to fix it - diagnosis can be time consuming

mine is up august 2019 and I'm prepping now - I dont like surprises and dont need the frustration.

_________________
poverty forces one to do unorthodox things

2000 SSEi
past rides:
1996 SSEi
1992 GTP
1987 Grand Am


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PostPosted: Mon May 07, 2018 12:24 pm 
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Joined: Tue May 10, 2011 3:47 pm
Posts: 34
Location: Moon Township, PA
Year and Trim: 2000 Pontiac Bonneville SLE, GM 3800 Series V6
Looks like I was misinterpreting the EVAP light on my reader. A solid light does not mean a pending DTC is present. Rather, it means that the EVAP test ran and completed. So scratch that part of my post.

Also I found a few videos online regarding cleaning the IAC. I'll give it a shot after it stops raining, and let you know what happens.


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