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Old 01-11-2010, 01:33 AM   #1
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Default 2000 SLE 3.8 sluggish when floored

My car wouldn't start in subzero temperatures, so I pushed it into the nearest barn. Father-in-law came by and shot 'starting fluid' into air intake and we got it started. Since then, it'* had a sluggish or hesitant response to acceleration.

Changed fuel filter, plugs and wires, noticed a darkened stem on 2/5 coil, replaced it after code reader said "multiple cylinder misfire" and "Low Level O2 sensor" (SES light). Tested IAT, MAF, IAC, ECT, TPS, and fuel injectors.

I have yet to replace O2 sensor, test the crankshaft position sensor, and fuel pressure test.

The car starts and idles fine. RPMs climb with gradual acceleration, but when stomped, it sputters and RPMs don't climb over 2000. However, the sputtering doesn't cause it to die.

I'm taking another day off work to finish up the other tasks because it is my daily driver, therefore any suggestions would help.

Thank you.
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Old 01-11-2010, 08:05 AM   #2
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Test your coils. If they test good, then take a look at the MAP sensor.
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Old 01-11-2010, 09:10 AM   #3
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From the sound of things, you've checked/tested/replaced a lot.

The crank sensor should not cause the car to be sluggish or keep it from revving up. The O2 level being low (if this is the B1 S1 sensor and not a catalyst operating below efficiency code) points to a fuelling issue. Along with the RPM'* not climbing.

My first suggestion would be to check the fuel pressure and or change the filter. Sometimes our filters have water in them and the very cold temps freeze the water and restrict the flow of fuel.
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Old 01-11-2010, 02:01 PM   #4
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Thanks guys.

Now I've ohmed out all 3 coils and got a reading of 5.33 or similar on each.

I've successfully tested the MAP sensor plug but am still reading up on the MAP sensor test.

Fuel pressure testing revealed 50 psi when turning the key to ON and listening to fuel pump cycle.
After starting, it idles at 45 psi.
The gradual rev maintains a 45 psi reading and the foot to the floor jumps to 50 psi and stays there while engine bogs down/ sputters until releasing the pedal. I replaced the fuel filter, first thing yesterday.

Heading back out.
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Old 01-11-2010, 02:47 PM   #5
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Check the exhaust for a ristriction such as a clogged cat.
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Old 01-11-2010, 06:36 PM   #6
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While you are back outside. Pull the valve cover cap too. Slim, but possible if your pcv clogged that the crank case pressure is bogging you down. Pulling the valve cover cap and trying it would answer the question w/o pulling the pcv.
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Old 01-12-2010, 12:00 AM   #7
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Loosened bolts from manifold to exhaust to test catalytic converter. Same results, just louder.

When I returned fuel pressure tester to Autozone, they recommended bringing in ICM for free test. It checked out. Then they suggested crankshaft position sensor. So I'm working on that.

Have not tried PCV yet.
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Old 01-12-2010, 12:14 AM   #8
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i would check the cat
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Old 01-12-2010, 11:55 AM   #9
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Not sure how to say this while leaving myself that one is a few billion chance to be wrong. The crank sensor can be checked by looking at the spark advance. When you mash the pedal, what does the advance say?
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Old 01-12-2010, 04:14 PM   #10
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I don't still have the diagnostic comp here, it was borrowed. I'm going to have to fashion a flywheeel stopper to break crank bolt loose. Bent up 2 screwdrivers already. Just came in to warm up.
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