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I have a 96 t-bird, v-8. When I first start it up, being cold, it dies, immediatly. when I start it ands it cold, I have to keep the gas on, or it will die, if I let off the gas my lights dim and my battery gauge goes down and my rps, I can give it gas and it all goes back up, once it gets warm, not hot, just warm, it will ideal but it feels like its missing and my light dim. Once hot, it does fine. My battery died a couple of days ago because I had to turn my lights on manually and forgot to turn them back off. Any ideas as to whats going on?

Thanks,
Donny - Dallas Texas
 

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My 97 4.6 does the same thing, only it does it maybe once a week. I have to keep the car running with my foot on the gas or it will stall. I replaced the throttle position sensor & seemed to help for a few weeks, but the problem came back. Sometimes I can go weeks with no problems. What could it be???


W.Cup
 

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Hmm...maybe you need to clean your MAF. I've posted this before, and I'm not saying that it is what is wrong with your car, but it is what happened to me, and maybe it's something you could look into:

I was driving to school one day and as soon as I stop for a speedbump in our parking lot the car dies. I try to restart it but no luck. I put the car in 'n' and cruise into a parking spot. (I still had forward momentum.) I try to start the car again and it goes for a few seconds, but the RPM's then fall and it dies. I keep trying to restart it but the only way to keep it running is to keep the RPM's above 1500. Thick black smoke is pouring out the tailpipes. Even when it runs it is completely shakey and rough. I decide not to drive it, so it's towed to a local mechanic. I come back the next day, and its fixed. Apparently the MAF had failed, and that had caused all the problems.

So...that's my story, and I had some symptons similar to yours, but some that were different.
 

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I dont know what it could be. My entire intake is clean as a whistle, everything under my hood shines, I keep my car very clean. I took a look at everything anyways, but my MAF seamed to be working great, and clean, just to be sure i cleaned everything up. This is the first time Mine has done this. It worked fine all day today, no problems yet... This is SO weired! Think I'm going to call Ford if it starts to act up again.

Thanks for your posts!
Donny
 

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donnyp02 said:
I have a 96 t-bird, v-8. When I first start it up, being cold, it dies, immediatly. when I start it ands it cold, I have to keep the gas on, or it will die, if I let off the gas my lights dim and my battery gauge goes down and my rps, I can give it gas and it all goes back up, once it gets warm, not hot, just warm, it will ideal but it feels like its missing and my light dim. Once hot, it does fine. My battery died a couple of days ago because I had to turn my lights on manually and forgot to turn them back off. Any ideas as to whats going on?

Thanks,
Donny - Dallas Texas
I'd suggest that your battery is almost done. I have a year old battery and i can leave the lights on for hours and she will still start just fine. How old is the battery? What does your Voltage read from when you start up to when it's hot?

It's real easy to test its charge. I used to use one of those $5 gauges to get a rough idea. Even though all the batteries these days say No Maintenance or Maintenance-Free, you still have to pop the tops to check fluid level in it. The No Maintenance thing is crapola. Top off with distilled water. It's getting into colder times now, so I'd expect to see a number of questions similar to yours.

Beyond that, then check the alt strength.
 

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Like what Soop says and...

As with most questions on the Internet it is rather difficult to guess the problem without seeing the car in person. But if I was a betting man I would say that you have an electrical problem. I think it can be your battery but chances are your alternator is going.

A simple test will be to turn on your headlights and let your car sit and idle in drive. If it is not charging you may have an alternator problem.

The best test for a battery is called a load test. You can have some shops do it for you for free. That is, if you buy a battery if it fails. I bet you can make a deal... Humm...
 

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Wow, I found a thread with my problem!

My T-bird did the same thing this morning before work. I tried to start the car with the remote start and it just wouldn't have it. I went out and started the car myself and it would only stay running if I feathered the gas. As soon as I let it go it would die. I held the gas in for about 10 secs and it still died on me...argh!

Went back outside 10 mins later and after holding the gas pedal down for about 15 secs it finally stayed running.

My alternator and battery (Die Hard Gold) are about 2 weeks old.

Sounds like a fuel problem so I'm going to try a fuel filter this weekend (it's never been replaced as far as I know).

I have underdrive pulleys and my headlights still dim while at a stoplight with the car in drive. (someone said they should be fine w/ new battery and alt.) I'm thinking about getting rid of the pulleys. My headlight bulbs are those higher wattage types (that I've had in the car for about 5 yrs) so that might have something to do with it.
 

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My '97 Cat did that, then it got to the point where it would die while at a stop sign / light. My honest guess would be the IAC is about shot........especially if it's dying when it's cold, but after the car warms up....it runs fine.........yeah, I'd place my money on the IAC. I know they're about $70.00, give or take, at Auto Zone.

Good luck
Slowride
 

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Forgive me, but what is the IAC? Is this something that's easy to replace? My car has 75k miles on it - is it typical for it to need replacement now?

Thanks.....
 

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Re: Like what Soop says and...

J.Miller said:
As with most questions on the Internet it is rather difficult to guess the problem without seeing the car in person. But if I was a betting man I would say that you have an electrical problem. I think it can be your battery but chances are your alternator is going.

A simple test will be to turn on your headlights and let your car sit and idle in drive. If it is not charging you may have an alternator problem.

The best test for a battery is called a load test. You can have some shops do it for you for free. That is, if you buy a battery if it fails. I bet you can make a deal... Humm...
Yeah, it's tough to diagnose whithout knowing every detail and hearing, seeing, etc. Especially with EFI as opposed to carbed. You just have to check components in a step by step process.

J Miller: Nice Cougah by the way. I didn't notice any numbers as far as ETs and dyno though. It would be really interesting knowing what the engine swap did for you.
 

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Wow seems like everyone is having this problem, including me...lol. My mom had left the lights on yesterday because she turned them on manually and the car went dead! So we had someone jump it and it started fine. Went over my grandmothers for a little bit and when we came out..... the car was dead again! So we jumoed it once again. When I got home I played around with it to try and see whats wrong. When I put a load on the battery (lights/heater/wipers/blinker/windows/and in drive) the battery guage would go all the way into the red (8) and the car would die. Almost didn't start back up. So I think the battery of about 3 years has went bad. Just for now I topped off the fluid and threw it on a charger for a few hours. It was only 75 percent when I first put it on too. So after I charged it, I tried to put a load on it again to see what happens. This time it didn't hit the red and didn't stall, but it wasn't in normal either. It was like halfway between the red and N....

So I am just going to put a new battery in it.

Another thing is that if you hit the gas the volts will go back up and begin to go back down after I let off.....hmmm
 

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yeah, a battery will lose it's ability to charge. if it has holes in the top, add some distilled water. that might help.
 

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Before just assuming it's the battery, take it and have the charging system tested at Auto Zone. It's FREE and you'd know for sure if it was the battery or the Altenator. If the altenator is bad, or not charging properly....it will drain your battery as well. Wouldn't it just make you mad to replace the battery for $100 and turn around and find out it's the altenator and have to drop another $200 to replace it?? Take the car and have it checked. If you're nervous about driving it because the battery gets drained, then take the battery out and take it in and have it checked to just be sure the battery is bad and needs replaced.

And if I understood the above post, the battery is only 3 years old??? What kind of warranty does it have?? I know most batteries, even the cheap ones, are good for 5 years. That's why I'm wondering if maybe the altenator is bad, or going bad anyways.
 

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Slowride said:
Before just assuming it's the battery, take it and have the charging system tested at Auto Zone. It's FREE and you'd know for sure if it was the battery or the Altenator. If the altenator is bad, or not charging properly....it will drain your battery as well. Wouldn't it just make you mad to replace the battery for $100 and turn around and find out it's the altenator and have to drop another $200 to replace it?? Take the car and have it checked. If you're nervous about driving it because the battery gets drained, then take the battery out and take it in and have it checked to just be sure the battery is bad and needs replaced.

And if I understood the above post, the battery is only 3 years old??? What kind of warranty does it have?? I know most batteries, even the cheap ones, are good for 5 years. That's why I'm wondering if maybe the altenator is bad, or going bad anyways.
I'll take it to Autozone tomorrow and see if it is the battery. The alternator was just replaced like 6 months ago, so I doubt it is bad. The battery was replaced by Ford at $120 (a motorcraft battery) a couple weeks after the car was bought, which was about 3-4 years ago (I'll have to check). Maybe there is something else wrong with the electrical system, I hope not. They said it wasn't covered by the warrenty that was purchased with the car... go figure.... Anyways, I'll see what Autozone has to say. It is safe to drive the car, hasn't died yet. The volts just drop a bit while stopped at a light or something.

How do you know when the battery is topped off? Can you add to much watter or no?

hmmm.. maybe its the crapola bosch plugs..lol j/k. I can't wait to get them things out!
 

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Well i ordered a new IAC from autozone. Since my bird just started doing the same thing as all of yours. It was 39.99 from autozone special ordered but they overnight to their stores so i can pick it up next day.

by the way IAC stands for IDLE AIR CONTROLER
 

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Hey Stinger - if you wouldn't mind - let me know how the install goes and if it solves your problem. Which part is this exactly? Is it easy to replace? Post pics if you can.

Thanks.........
 
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