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Topic Review (Newest First)
03-04-2010 07:22 PM
Originally Posted by Studebaker
Well if it was overheated and then filled with water and the radiator froze to the point of breaking, I would say the engine also froze. It is junk. Nothing more to say.

agreed. Time for a JY 4.3- I like those engines... PITA to get at the plugs though. Last of the torquey base model engines (or only engine, as in the Astro), seems that the base engines in new stuff has no torque and needs to see 4000rpm to make any power.
03-04-2010 05:57 PM
fast68 interesting call on the temp sensor being ruined, i never thought about that one hmmmmm

when i get the new plugs in it ill probably swap the sensor also..

02-21-2010 02:25 PM
Radiator froze?

Well if it was overheated and then filled with water and the radiator froze to the point of breaking, I would say the engine also froze. It is junk. Nothing more to say.
02-20-2010 06:51 PM
T-bucket23 If it got that hot you probably ruined the temperature sensor for the ECM. This could cause it to think it was cold and dump more fuel. As far as blowing out oil and valve cover gaskets, depending on how hot it got you may have broken a ring or cracked a piston and now you have massive blow by.
Those grounds are important and need to be connected. This could cause the temp sensor not to work
02-20-2010 06:35 AM
Originally Posted by sbchevfreak
Pull the doghouse, and jack up the front end and support so that the wheels hang free(use jackstands!!!). You can then reach in over the tires and remove the plugs and get in to do a comp test.
You can get to all of the plugs except #1, like this, (IIRC), #1 you can get from the front.
02-20-2010 06:01 AM
sqzbox Hey stimpy, That's what I thought but not in my case. I tried that several times in 30 min to no avail. After stressing for that long (on the way to work 41 mi away) I was ready to try anything because what I was doing, wasn't working!
I tried flooring it, no start.
Tried not touching it, no start.
Tried starting fluid, no start.

It wasn't till after I disconnected the injectors that it fired till it ran out of gas. I re-connected them and cranked it without touching the gas and it started an ran ok. I think the 88 f-bird computer was goofy as I was starting to have issues with electronic's before I sold it. Automatic lock-up on the tranny quit working but I got around that with a manual switch. The speed limiter quit as the car would run up to 135 mph in 4th gear un-locked. Gauges would just quit working while driving and sometimes not at all after start up.
And a host of other problems I can't remember. I was glad to get rid of it even though it still looked good body wise. I sold it for 200 bucks for parts and it's still sitting in the guy's back yard and hasn't run since.
02-20-2010 05:35 AM
stimpy sqeeze box all you had to do was hold the pedal to the floor as the computer has a clear flood program built in that allows you to unflood the motor while crankin when you do this ... just keep it filed for next time ..

as eating caps and rotors means cheap caps and rotors and old wires ( high resistance and voltage leaks ) , nothing works good as AC delco stuff I found ( except napas good stuff $$$ )
the spark should be blue ,not white and should snap ,not pop ( sign of a dieing coil , and always gap the plugs yourself , do not rely on the old therory that they are pregapped from the factory alot happens in transit and the factory is now in mexico and they can be short gapped ! which can cause timing issues , as for the ground wires being cut , your computer probably went into limp home mode and needs to be lobotimized ( disconnect positive cable from battery for 30 minutes) to reboot and clear codes , do this AFTER you get it up and running from the tune up, then take it for a drive down the street , as waiting for that 4.3 to die well I hate to tell you the body of that astro will rot out long before that thing dies , the only way I know how to kill them is to run them without oil or water , and you still have the chance of it living thru that ! they are a little workhorse ..
02-20-2010 05:01 AM
sqzbox What I can't figure out is how you know the plugs are soaking wet with fuel if you can't reach them to get them out.
Anyway, It sounds like the engine is throttle body injected, right?

Had that happen to me once. 305 got flooded at a gas station and would not start even with a shot of starting fluid. After screwing around with it for a half hour and pushing it off the fuel island, I managed to get it running by disconnecting the electrical connectors to the injectors cutting off all fuel to the engine and cranking it over till it fired. I then reconnected the injectors then it started and ran fine.
Never did figure out why it did that, but I found a way to start it if it ever happened again which it never did before I sold it (go figure).
02-20-2010 01:51 AM
fast68 yeah im not sure what happened that his employee had to use pure water, but apparently something blew while he was on the route in springfield and its in the middle of the night, and so.....

oil has no moisture in it, no foaming or anything else in it also.

does smell like fuel some, but its flooded, so no wonder..

i cant seem to get much slop from the timing chain no

and the distributor shaft is actually good and tight, it apears the distributor is not original and is probably a reman unit

he bought the van years ago for like 300 bucks because it needed a fuel pump at the time

he will run it til it wont run again

if its something major wrong internally then he wont spend on it i know

he called me wanting me to check it out because he doesnt know anyone else and i can use this to score me some brownie points anyways..

because i need the work and the $ and this help things along and i can get to work for him full time.

i wanted to check compression on all the cylinders but OMG there is no room to be doing that on these vans.

the plugs are soaking wet flooded, so gotta replace them anyways,, and then see if she fires up

it should.

the oil in the fan shroud was so interesting it stood out in my mind,, its just oen of those things hmmm.,.,

its easy to say just junk it and buy another one, but its not,

he needs the van again ASAP

1/4 of his cleaning equipment is in this van,

i know it will run again with new plugs, just dont know how well.,

02-19-2010 04:37 PM
sbchevfreak Pull the doghouse, and jack up the front end and support so that the wheels hang free(use jackstands!!!). You can then reach in over the tires and remove the plugs and get in to do a comp test.
02-19-2010 04:03 PM
cobalt327 Fast, have you checked for a bad timing chain?
02-19-2010 09:38 AM
sqzbox First off, the person who put water in the radiator and left it that way in Illinois in winter, is an idiot.

Check the dipstick for a milky color. If it is, the motor is junk and the block is probably cracked.

Oil at the bottom of the shroud is collecting there from the turbulence in the engine bay and might be coming from the leaking valve covers or coolant mixing with crud that was there already.

Unless you volunteered to do the work, I wouldn't touch it. The best way to access the plugs is from underneath the van reaching up beside the engine which is risking your life without an assortment of jack stands and a good floor jack.
From all the problems you mentioned, I would suggest your boss buy's a new van instead of throwing money at a 100,000+ mi used engine.
There's no telling without a complete tear down what damage has been done and he's going to be wasting his money.
Also, oil floats on water, so the dipstick might not show the milky color. Other places to look are under the oil fill cap or, just drain the oil for an oil change.
02-19-2010 07:32 AM
burnt olds
4.3L chevy doesnt run right after frozen radiator etc,

jack up and reach plugs through fender wells ?
02-19-2010 12:01 AM
4.3L chevy doesnt run right after frozen radiator etc,

ok i have some info here and i want any ideas or thoughts or things to check, regarding why this 4.3L engine wasnt runing right. these 4.3L(and most others 80s and 90s TBI) engines usually always run great and have very few known issues, mainly the only big deal on them is that they eat caps and rotors, and carbon piece in the EGR sometimes., and also the IAC sometimes get carboned up really bad.,.

my boss has a '90's astro van with the common everyday TBI 4.3L

about a week ago pure water was put into the cooling system and it froze and broke the radiator

the truck was over heated and run quite a bit this way the night it happened.,

since then it didnt ever run right and sometimes would not start up and run

and now the plugs are dripping wet in raw gas.

i noticed yesterday when i was looking over the engine real good that the guy working on it broke off the two ground wires at the thermostat housing bolt. these wires are for the MAP sensor, and the ECM, i assume...

so i am thinking that with at least the MAP ground disconnected it probably was running really rich and slowly was killing the junk autolite plugs that are in it.,

the engine was already running not right anyways, before the wires got broken off.,., the wires were broken off when he was removing or installing the alternator. about a week ago.
i repaired the ground wires yesterday.,

i also checked, and it has a great(white, hot) ignitionspark,
many ignition parts are new.... such as the cap and rotor and wires, etc.

somehow it blew the valve cover seals and they leak now,
also,,, somehow there is oil laying in the botton radiator shroud. not sure how that can happen....

high crankcase pressures?

its not the original engine and its surely got well over 100k miles on it, it is run virtually every day for commercial cleaning business routes.

if there was enough room i would use the compression tester and check all cylinders but wow there is like no room for anything,
let alone getting to the spark plug locations with tools to replace them.... in which i gotta do tommorrow..

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