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  #1  
Old August 6th, 2008, 06:19 PM
flynn23
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Scott Kozicki
97 NAS D90 SW
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Weird sparking around coils

While trying to track down an overheating problem, I noticed a crackling noise that ended up being some arching/sparking around the coils. Seems like there's some arching going between the ignition wire connector boot and the top of the coil (97 D90 SW). It's not consistent, but seems to do it across all cylinders during idle, about twice every 10 seconds or so. I've noticed that the truck 'sputters' or 'misses' at idle and at speed, like it's mis-firing a stroke on one cylinder every once and awhile, but this is fairly infrequent. The truck starts fine and all the electrics in it seem to be working fine.

Any ideas on what would be causing the arching THROUGH the insulation of the wire boots and the coils? Do I need to just replace the wires and the coils or is this a symptom of another problem? Could this be related to the engine running very hot for a few days?
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  #2  
Old August 7th, 2008, 12:28 AM
MonLand
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Loic Fabro
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When is the last time (time or miles) you replaced your wires?
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  #3  
Old August 7th, 2008, 01:24 AM
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Langdon Hill
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Old wire

I agree. I have seen this in my 66 Fairlanes. Watch the motor run in the dark. Lots of sparks. If you get your hand in there you should get a nice shock. Don't do that, it will hurt. That is why many companies sell "hi-performance" silicon wires.
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  #4  
Old August 7th, 2008, 03:49 PM
flynn23
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Scott Kozicki
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Wires were replaced not quite 2 years ago, which would be around 20K miles. Do you think the shielding on the boots is shot or is this indicative of a larger problem? I have no intention of sticking my hand near them. Just spritzing some water over the coils was enough to determine that there's a plenty of jumping going on. I can't tell if this is what's causing the stuttering. It kinda feels like missed timing, but then again, I also think it's time to replace my timing chain. One thing at a time I guess.
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  #5  
Old August 7th, 2008, 03:58 PM
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landrovered
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S. Smith
72 Series III 109 Diesel
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I would bet that it is the plug wires, engines are not supposed to have stray voltage shooting about, it causes misfiring as you describe. I had the same problem in a D2 that would run fine and then miss and run like crap, then run fine again. It turned out to be a misfire on plug 3 arcing to the dipstick tube. Replaced the wire and all was solved.

Unless you just want to tear off your water pump, fan, radiator, A/C, alternator, oil pump and front cover for kicks, I would replace your plug wires. I use STI wires they are very good.
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  #6  
Old August 7th, 2008, 05:10 PM
MonLand
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Loic Fabro
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flynn23
Wires were replaced not quite 2 years ago, which would be around 20K miles. Do you think the shielding on the boots is shot or is this indicative of a larger problem?
I also think this is simply your wires. I was told by a (reliable?) mechanic that some (cheap or not so cheap sometimes) wires will not last more than a year (he was making that comment regarding my blue wires).
I'd replace them with new ones and verify that this fixes the problem. I pushed the wires on my disco for a bit (probably 3-4 years, maybe 20K miles) and at the end if was running fine up to the point where the engine warmed up and then misfired a lot (but still plenty driveable), new wires, and it's good as (almost) new.
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Quote:
I have an ex MoD and an ex wife. The two no longer conflict with each other.
Quote:
it is not hoarding it is selective collecting
---
MonLand
1995 D90 NAS
1996 Discovery NAS
2006 LR3 NAS (hers, but comfy! :) )
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  #7  
Old August 11th, 2008, 02:09 AM
flynn23
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Scott Kozicki
97 NAS D90 SW
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I did replace the wires and it seems to have made a mild difference, although I did find other problems. I wasn't able to find a local distributor of STI wires, but bought a set from Autozone just to test the theory. No more sparking around the coils and the engine seems to be a bit happier. I'm still getting some misfiring, but I suspect that's because the two passenger front spark plugs had a bit of corrosion on the tips after I removed the wires. I ordered a set of STI's and plugs to do a full replacement later this week and I suspect that will solve the misfiring problem. Now to get back to the overheating problem... =(

Thanks all for giving me guidance and reassuring my assumptions. This community is so valuable to me! =)
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  #8  
Old August 11th, 2008, 08:29 AM
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landrovered
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S. Smith
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Don't forget to use the dialectic grease with your plug wires on the coil pack end, it can make a difference.
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  #9  
Old August 11th, 2008, 11:13 AM
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jim pendleton
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One of your coil towers is most likely broken. It happens when non-factory wires are installed or forced into the coil tower. You will need to find which coil and replace.
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