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Old 09-09-2005, 03:54 PM
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87 dodge mini ram (3.0L) - running rich?

Sorry for more q's on this 87 dodge mini ram van 3.0L v6 (also known as a Voyager i think).

So it's parked in my carport and when I start it up its shooting out black crap from the exhaust (little bit each time cold start lets say). Now there's visible black spray marks on the concrete where the exhaust is.

I assume this is a pretty bad thing, what would be all the causes for this. i just assume it's running rich?

I also get a small stumble sometimes when hitting the gas (eg - from a dead stop to moving)

If so what parts will I be look into if I'm running rich?

What other issues could this be?

I just am trying to diagnose to try and fix myself (short on $) and hoping you can guide me on all I should check.

I change the oil regularly, reg maintanance, just gave it a full tune-up and timing was set. It drives ok (except for a little stumble on initial gas). Eats fuel a bit more now though.

thanks for any help

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Old 09-09-2005, 04:28 PM
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You could be running a bit rich. However I imagine a lot of that is condensation mixing with the black residue left by exhaust gasses inside the exhaust piping.

What type of engine is this? Carbed? EFI? The more details, the better.
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Old 09-09-2005, 04:42 PM
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3.0L v6 - EFI (1987)

Not long ago, I just did a tune-up, replaced the Oxygen sensor, reg oil changes.

The oil looks fine on the dipstick (no probs there). Van runs ok.
New cat converter about 2-3 months ago btw.

But, spitting out black crap now (and REALLY getting smelly and rank) out the exhaust.

I also suspect the fuel regulator due to being able to smell (abnormal) fuel when it's idling...but I have no idea how to get to it or take that off.

It could be more than running rich (sensors bad - but which ones??).

thanks for any help guys
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Old 09-13-2005, 11:43 AM
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Check to make sure the map sensor is getting a good vacuum signal, or try a good known map sensor. You may have a fuel regulator problem, try disconnecting the vacum line to it and try it. Or a cooent temp sensor. You should have it scan tested to see what fault codes it spits out.Good luck.
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Old 09-13-2005, 03:35 PM
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I have seen those with bad routing on the vac hose to the map sensor. It gets condensation in the loop that hangs down. You do need to get a scan, everything else is just guessing and throwing parts at it which isn't the smart way of fixing anything.
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Old 09-26-2005, 02:31 PM
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Ok, I got a scan done ($78.00???). The outcome were the following fault codes:

Problem: running RICH and spitting out black soot (especially upon cold start to warmup and revving engine). You could see "black smoke" upon revving the engine and the fuel smell was heavy in the exhaust.
* Also leaking a little water at cold start/warmup which I suspect to be
"old car" condensation, I don't see it much after I've been driving though.

Codes found:

- code 24: TPS sensor
- code 13 (or 14) Map sensor basically
- code 51: O2 sensor stuck at lean condition

The mech thought however that after all the tune-up work I had done and adding a new cat and O2 sensor this last spring...that the computer just needed resetting. He reset and the computer and the "black smoke/running rich" seemed to go away...but after driving a while I could feel and tell it came back (it did - code 51, and showing black smoke when quick revving)

I found decent prices on a TPS and Map sensor so I just went ahead and replaced both myself (just wanted to - these parts were old and prob due for replacement). I checked all vac lines/routing to make sure they were in good condition as well.

* I had him check the fuel pressure too as I suspected the fuel pressure regulator and the fact my fule pump is loud (making a loud whirring noise all the time when running - it has for many years).
Spec fuel pressure should be 36psi, mine checks out at 29psi.
He suggested replacing both pump and pressure regulator at the same time eventually before I get stuck dead in the water....but his price quote on the part and install was way too high (I already researched feul pumps and best prices...his was nearly triple the price and the labor was standard $75.00/hour). I said I would buy the parts.

I'll be picking up a new pump and regulator soon. I'd like to try and install these myself. Is this really difficult in this model (v6, 3.0L 87 dodge mini ram van/caravan)?

It's still running rich (I can tell and smell it - the exhaust is potent!). Help??

Questions now....

- Do you think this fuel pressure (fuel pump/pressure regulator) is the reason the O2 is reading lean (terefore constantly running rich)? Do you think this is the final culprit after changing the other sensors?
Is 29psi that bad and a sign to get a fuel pump and pressure reg asap?

- Do you guys think the O2 sensor (new last spring) needs replacing? I hope not (another expense), it's not old at all, and I didn't take it out and use any solvents on it, etc.
Should I try and clean it or blow it out with air?

Notes: Along with a new Cat and O2 sensor last spring, I did a full tune-up (new wires, plugs, air/oil filters, reg oil changes, tranny fluid change, cap, rotor). Now I put in new TPS sensor and MAP sensor.

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