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Old 09-14-2007, 06:22 PM   #1
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Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

The problem:

I let the car sit for two years and now it will not idle. I can get it started but I have to keep my foot in the gas to keep it running. It ran fine 2 years ago but now it just won't idle.

Other trouble shooting aids:

I have a air/fuel ratio gauge that shows a good mixture, my tach is just shot it reads really high for some reason but that has been a problem that has continued to get worse and worse, and the engine backfires when it finally stops (sometimes).

What I've done so far:

I have syphoned gas out of my tank and put in good gas with additive, changed the oil/filter, rebuilt my TBI, put in new plugs, new distributor cap and rotor, checked a few vaccum lines, checked the timing and changed the fuel filter out twice.

I am wondering if I should buy an IAC valve. The thing is almost $35 and I put one on a little more than a couple of years ago. What else could I do to get this thing going again?
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Old 09-15-2007, 05:48 PM   #2
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

Mine Set for 10 years...(not a misprint) Some of the problems I had were simular to yours...and as I tryed getting it to run right I went thru 2 sets of plugs and 2 distributor caps. The caps seemed to corrode easily due to moisture which probably wouldn't be enough of a concern with a smooth running engine but made things even worse with mine as I got it running good eventually. Id also check your plug wire resistance.

You mentioned your tach...I had a simular problem with my speedo. Bad ground. I'd look into things along those lines. Cracked vacume lines, corroded grounds, Critters in the exhaust and simular restrictions in the air intake,

As far as your IAC, if its voltages are correct and the steps are smooth using a DVOM I wouldn't bother replace it.

HTH
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Old 09-17-2007, 09:37 PM   #3
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

OK, I looked at vaccum lines again and grounds and didn't find anything that might be causing the problem. I didn't check the plug wire resistance yet. I need to borrow a multimeter from a friend first. I have the 8 mm MSD wires and they are about 3-4 years old.

I am wondering...could this be a distributor going bad or a clogged filter on the fuel pump pick up?

What do you think?
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Old 09-18-2007, 10:44 PM   #4
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

Well, I finally broke down and bought a Winaldl cable so hopefully I will soon see some kind of solution to this problem.
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Old 09-18-2007, 11:17 PM   #5
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

more than likely your 2 year old spark plug wires have dry rotted.........crank it up at night and look for blue coming off
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Old 09-18-2007, 11:42 PM   #6
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

You did put fresh gas in it after sitting for two years right? Like others have said your car could use a tune up. You should have fresh oil and plugs for sure.
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Old 09-18-2007, 11:52 PM   #7
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

I did put fresh gas in it and I have basiclly put in a lot of stuff towards a complete tune up but I am still missing something.

Dry rotted spark plug wires is something I didn't think of though. I have the MSD 8.5 mm wires and just assumed they are good to go. I'll have to see if that is part of the problem. Those wires get expensive.

Thanks for ya'lls input I appreciate it.
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Old 09-21-2007, 10:56 PM   #8
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

Hey irocz...i am in wichita falls also...do u live in the faith villiage area?
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Old 09-24-2007, 08:15 AM   #9
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

No I live in capehart housing on Sheppard AFB now, well I am moving there this week anyway. Where is faith village?
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Old 10-01-2007, 06:58 PM   #10
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

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Originally Posted by iroczrockz View Post
No I live in capehart housing on Sheppard AFB now, well I am moving there this week anyway. Where is faith village?
Hook a fuel pressure gauge up to it...
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Old 10-07-2007, 06:44 PM   #11
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

I'm getting 13 psi. The gauge is hooked up right before entering the TBI. Sorry for the late response I moved in to another house and I am still in boxes up to my eyeballs here.
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Old 10-09-2007, 10:18 PM   #12
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

you might want to pull the cap, as the corrosion that gets to cap terminals also gets to the distributor module. pull the wiring off and remove the module, i bet theres green stuff under there. related cause is the shut down when trying to idle. this is called low speed dropout of the module.(may be incorrect terminology). clean and reinstall or replace if no change.
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Old 11-13-2007, 10:05 PM   #13
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

Well, I know it has been a few days or a month but I finally got to checking out the dist module. It checked good at Autozone. I also finally got my ALDL cable and the laptop out to the car but I am still trying to figure out how to use the program.

I did disconnect my MSD box and hooked up the original ignition but that wasn't the problem. I am starting to think that it may be the distributor. I'm not too sure of the terminology but the distributor parts just beneath the rotor is rusted as krap. I could actually blow off some of the rust it was so bad.

Could this be part of the problem?
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Old 11-13-2007, 10:14 PM   #14
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

Maybe try another set of injectors? I've seen them gum-up and have a funky spray pattern.
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Old 11-21-2007, 06:58 PM   #15
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

the module that i am refering to is in the distributor below the rotor. its the part that is "all gumbed up and crap"
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Old 12-30-2007, 01:05 AM   #16
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

Sorry for the long delay ya'll but work is killing me during the holiday season. Looking ahead at tax time I am starting to wonder if I should just punt and go carb. I would hate to start easter egging at this point and waste money. I have considered getting another dist but I'm not sure that would fix my problem. The other thing is the injectors and they aren't too cheap either. I am running matched #61 injectors right now with this 350 TBI project.

I tested that module you are talking about rocko350 and it was good. The distributor is extremely rusted though under that.

I am estimating around $1K to mess with during tax time. What would ya'll do in my shoes?
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Old 01-10-2008, 06:22 AM   #17
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

If it ran fine when you parked it than I would keep what you got and figure out what went bad during it's hibernation. Thats just my opinion anyways. It shouldn't cost a whole bunch to figure out. Your not throwing parts at it but simply testing and ruling out possible problems.

If you tested your module and it tested ok but theres a ton of rust and crud in there there than I would absolutely get rid of it and reassemble it. There isn't anything to a dist. so if you tested your module and you have a new cap than that part is done. so that leaves your coil, plug wire and plugs to test then you can rule out ignition.
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Old 01-10-2008, 08:14 PM   #18
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

Well this past Monday I sent off my injectors to Turbo City to be cleaned and rematched. Cost $70. I figure that can't hurt and it will rule out those injectors. I am really hoping that will fix it. If I get that back and it doesn't fix it I will look harder at that coil. The coil isn't that old but there isn't much else to replace. I guess I have to keep in mind that the thing does run past about 3K rpm.
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Old 01-11-2008, 11:46 AM   #19
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

hey irocz i am having the same problem. my car has been sitting for 3 years now. i can get it to turn over wit starter fluid. but once that burns off it dies. and it takes like 10 secs of turning over for it to start then die instantly. i did what u did, as syphoned the gas out, and put techtron in it, new gas and a new fuel filter. i really dont know what it can be either. im so mad cuz it seems like an easy fix.
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Old 01-13-2008, 01:57 PM   #20
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

I got a call back from Turbo City saying that my injectors were fine. So, it's back to the drawing board. My next step will be new wires and maybe a new coil and distributor. Tax time is here so it won't hurt to replace that stuff anyway. I can't think of anything else it might be.

Killacamaro, do you have TBI or a carb? Is your ignition and ignition parts a possibility?
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Old 01-13-2008, 02:18 PM   #21
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

I would say that it may be your distributor, I had to replace the teeth on my GMC at about 150000 (give or take) miles It would hardly idle, and backfire like no other. Don't you just hate it when you let something sit and tho it ran fine before, it doesn't want to take life afterwards... its like it hates us for leaving it
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Old 01-13-2008, 02:23 PM   #22
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

LOL yeah I know what you mean. This is my payback for leaving it alone for two years. I think the car has got it's point across, I won't do that again.

I think I will try the distributor first. That is the only thing that is original to the motor.
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Old 01-13-2008, 04:40 PM   #23
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

iroc Z check your ignition coil. myne was dead. and i got a new 1. car started rite up and runs now. just it doesnt sound great. its boggles. like i give it gas and it sounds like shyt.
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Old 01-13-2008, 04:44 PM   #24
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

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iroc Z check your ignition coil. myne was dead. and i got a new 1. car started rite up and runs now. just it doesnt sound great. its boggles. like i give it gas and it sounds like shyt.
Yeah, I just called Auto Zone and they said they could ohm it (check resistance) but that won't tell me if it is bad though. It is the cheapest of the three items I need to get. The one I have is a MSD coil, I put it on about 4 years ago.
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Old 01-13-2008, 04:46 PM   #25
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

i can show u a link that tells u how to check it with a DVM, thats how i checkd myne, i just got a street fire msd to replace it, car started rite up.

http://www.autozone.com/az/cds/en_us...rInfoPages.htm
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Old 01-13-2008, 05:06 PM   #26
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

I checked that link and it said there was an error and it didn't exist anymore. Is this like the link through AutoZone that shows how to check a distributor too?
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Old 01-13-2008, 05:09 PM   #27
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

yes it is, i dont know why it doesnt work for u, it works for me fine, do u have a dvm
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Old 01-13-2008, 05:16 PM   #28
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

Ever try cleaning out the throttle body and replacing the fuel filter?
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Old 01-13-2008, 05:16 PM   #29
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

Sure do, I think I have that link saved to my favorites. I'll check it out and see.
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Old 01-13-2008, 05:18 PM   #30
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

Page not found I would check the coil first, since it is the cheapest, tho when my coil went, it just died ...tho my firebird is running off a 5+ year old coil atm (storage) tho it may have rust 3/4 the way through, it still runs
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Old 01-13-2008, 05:19 PM   #31
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

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Ever try cleaning out the throttle body and replacing the fuel filter?
Sure did, I just got word from Turbo City that my injectors are good to go and I have just about completely redone my fuel system. I get good pressure at the injectors too.
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Old 01-13-2008, 05:24 PM   #32
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

Well, the car runs fine when I keep the rpms up. I was wondering if the high rpms allowed the spark to jump or something.
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Old 01-13-2008, 05:26 PM   #33
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

I would rule the fuel system out guys, since he gets gas - hence he has to apply gas to keep it going.

You guys were correct about the IAC, did you get a chance to check that? Brandon does have some good points there
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iroczrockz View Post
Well, the car runs fine when I keep the rpms up. I was wondering if the high rpms allowed the spark to jump or something.
Timing--> distributor maybe

Maybe its just the timing

Last edited by TheBigJ; 01-13-2008 at 05:27 PM. Reason: Automerged Doublepost
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Old 01-13-2008, 08:38 PM   #34
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

Your coil is bad. Replace it with a known working coil and I think your problems will be solved.
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Old 01-13-2008, 08:42 PM   #35
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

I did check the timing and the coil does sound like the culprit the more I think about it. I think I'll just buy a new one and be done. Can't hurt I guess.
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Old 01-13-2008, 10:08 PM   #36
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

hey i did that to my 88 iroc just today and it was sitting for 3 years, and my ignition coil was dead. and i got an msd street fire ignition coil and it started rite and still starts on a dime. just now i gotta fix timing
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Old 01-14-2008, 08:20 AM   #37
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

I'm gonna order one today. Hopefully it will be here by the weekend.
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Old 01-27-2008, 05:43 PM   #38
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Axle/Gears: 3.42

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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brandon2350 View Post
Your coil is bad. Replace it with a known working coil and I think your problems will be solved.
UPDATE: I just replaced the coil and now the engine idles better but still dies when it gets to a lower RPM. I can actually lift my foot now but once it starts down in RPM out it goes.

I still have good fuel pressure when it starts to die, and I can get it to come back OK by giving it gas. The engine shakes bad and then just dies when I let off and leave it.

This started out as a TBI problem I thought but now this is turning into a general problem. Sorry Thirdgen.org for not getting this in the right thread category.

Does anyone know how to check the IAC valve?
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Old 01-27-2008, 06:13 PM   #39
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

Typically my checkpoints are this for cars that have been sitting.

Do a full service. Plugs, wires, cap, rotor, all your filters, oil, etc.

You have to clean the fuel system. What I do is run some injector cleaner (I have industrial stuff) and I put Mercury Outboard fuel system treatment in the tank. Thats good stuff.

Your symptoms are screaming vacumn leak. Now, the one that popped on mine is the one that goes to the front had a hole. You can also have some gaskets that rotted out for your TBI.

Letting a car sit is worse for it than anything else.
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Old 01-27-2008, 06:34 PM   #40
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

Well, I have replaced everything you mentioned except the wires and they aren't that old. I have rebuilt the TBI twice since I started working on this problem. I also emptied out the gas tank, changed the filter, and added fuel additive. Vacuum leak is something that I haven't looked for though.
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Old 01-27-2008, 10:11 PM   #41
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

hey iroc? when u syphoned out all the gas did ur gas gauge go all the way to full? and get pinned there?

CHECK FUEL PRESSURE! i bet its ur fuel pump. i changed myne and my car runs great now.
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Old 01-27-2008, 10:23 PM   #42
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

I didn't check my gas needle. My pressure is a constant 13 psi (when running). I am checking it right before it goes into the TBI. I have a pressure gauge mounted in the car. I'm really starting to think it isn't the fuel though.
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Old 01-27-2008, 10:29 PM   #43
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

ok, well i changed my fuel pump and it runs fine. did u do a tune up or wat? also check the dist. the timing. also are the injectors clean? do they have a pulse? check all that
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Old 02-06-2008, 09:33 PM   #44
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

To put a solid run down out there here is what I have done so far:

I drained the gas tank put in good gas and gas treatment. I changed the filter and sent off my injectors to turbocity and they check out good.

The TBI has been rebuilt and I am getting 13 psi right before it goes into the TBI. I also put a new cap and rotor on. Bought a new MSD blaster coil, and just recently put in a new IAC valve. I looked around for vacuum leaks and don't see anything just jumping out at me. I checked the intake for leaks and it is good and tight.

It runs better now but when I let off of the gas it will still die at low RPM. If I put it in gear it WILL die!

You guys have no idea how close I am to just selling my car. It seems like I just have no time/patience lately to deal with it. I don't want to think I am giving up but I might at this point.

I think I will replace one vacuum line this weekend and see if that helps. Any suggestions now?
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Old 02-09-2008, 09:55 PM   #45
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

Vacuume leaks can be tough to find...One way I like to look for them is to use a portable propane tank (the small blue bottles of propane gas used to solder pipes). Start the car, open the valve, then take the UN-LIT propane torch and run it closely along the vacuume line that your testing...If your idle changes, you found your leak.

In your case you may have to manually give it a little steady throttle where as you said it will die if the idle settles too long.
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Old 02-10-2008, 12:17 PM   #46
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

I did find a vacuum leak yesterday. It was the 5 foot line that T's off near the distributor and runs to the charcoal canister. The line was dry rotted so I bought a new one installed it and turned the car over only to find that the battery was dead. I had the battery charged last night so I am gonna see if that was the problem today.
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Old 02-10-2008, 06:57 PM   #47
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

Well, disregard ya'll. The vacuum line didn't fix it. It still wants to die at low RPM. It could be the distributor or wires, don't know but I just can't afford to put any more time in it. I have posted it in the classifieds. I'm sure someone will get a good car. I'm retiring soon and just can't afford to keep messing around.

For ya'll that stuck around with this thread and helped me out I really do appreciate your thoughts and time. If you know someone that needs a decent car let me know.

Thanks again, peace out.

IROCKZROCKZ
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Old 02-10-2008, 07:41 PM   #48
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

not to support throwing parts at anything, but, these distributors are known to get crappy, especially when all rusty inside.
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Old 02-10-2008, 07:46 PM   #49
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

That's about the only thing I haven't replaced, except the fuel pump, but I'm going to let someone else give it some TLC.

I have never replaced the distributor, that could be it but I need to get rid of it too though. I asked autozone if they had a distributor rebuild kit the other day but they didn't have one.
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Old 02-15-2008, 10:43 PM   #50
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Re: Car has not run in 2 years...need advice

I just had a sudden realization. Could this problem be my throttle position sensor?
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Old 02-15-2008, 10:43 PM
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