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Real progress with the work on the white 1989 Convertible


JensenHealey
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Some who have been following my progress may recall the post I made a few days ago where I said I have been successful with removing the one broken spark plug from the engine in the white 1989 Convertible.

I put new spark plugs in the engine tonight. Then I installed the battery out of my pickup truck, sprayed starting fluid down into the throttle body, and when I turned it over on the battery, it started!!!  Just to be sure I sprayed starting fluid down into the throttle body twice and each time it immediately fired off and ran until the starting fluid was gone from the intake.

There is no fuel getting to the engine at all so that is the next issue. It has an electric fuel pump in the tank so I will have to do some diagnosis to see if it is an electrical issue or a problem with the actual fuel pump in the tank.

BTW, working on the spark plugs in a Chevy V8 in these cars is a real HUGE pain in the ass!
Compared to changing spark plugs in any of the european engines I normally work on.

Edited by JensenHealey
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I do not remember - was this car in an accident?  Perhaps the fuel pump safety switch was tripped and it needs to be reset (assuming electric pump).  Also, do not run the car on old fuel (more than three months).  Drain the fuel and put in fresh fuel.  

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If this is a TBI engine I would test the fuel pressure at the test port. If low, remove fuel cap and listen while someone turns the ignition key on. You should hear the pump running for 3 seconds, then it will shut off. If you don' hear the pump try tapping on the fuel tank with a rubber mallet then repeat listening for the pump noise. If this loosens the pump up it will need to be replaced. If you still don't get any fuel pressure then test the wiring, studegary mentions the safety switch, there is also a fuel pump fuse and a fuel pump relay. The fuel pump is controlled by the ECM, as are the injectors. Fuel pressure problems will not set an engine code. The fuel pump is also wired into the oil pressue sensor, no oil pressure, no fuel.

 

Good luck,

Jim Wood

Edited by IndyJimW
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Fuel pressure for the 1989 Chevrolet Caprice is 9-13 psi, The fuel pump relay is mounted on the Electronic Spark Control Module with the In-Line fuse mounted nearby.

I pulled my fuel tank and installed a high pressure fuel pump for my TPI system, it was a major pain. Since this is a low pressure fuel system you may want to install a pump on the frame and wire it in to the OEM controls. This would save a LOT of work.

 

Good luck,

Jim Wood

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I have both fuel lines disconnected at the throttle body and then I am as I said spraying starting fluid down into the throttle body. When the engine fires off on the starting fluid, it runs while it can on the staring fluid but the two disconnected lines stay absolutely dry. So there is zero fuel flowing through the system to the TB.

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