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Old 01-26-2011, 08:09 PM   #1
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Default I caused SES to flash on SSEi

How I was the cause of SES flashing on my 2001 SSEi. I pulled on to highway yesterday morning going to work and had to open up the throttle. The Bonny shuddered and had a hard time accelerating. The SES started to flash. Drove to work thinking I had a coil corrosion problem, as I had two years ago. Went to work and checked middle coils, some corrosion. Went to RockAuto and ordered a AC/DELCO coil.

On the way home I decided to stop at AdvanceAuto and have them put the scanner on the Bonny. Cylinder 3 misfire. That was not the coil with corrosion cylinder. I replaced the plugs and wires two years ago with AC/DELCO plugs and Bendix premium wires. Before I tell the rest of the story, see if you can guess how I caused #3 to misfire. A clue is that my Bonny goes through a quart of of oil every 1k miles.

I got home and felt I new the problem after doing a simple visual inspection. I have been away from home last eight months and have been adding oil while engine hot and without a funnel. 95% of the oil makes it in the engine, 5% runs on the valve cover. of the 5% on the valve cover, some of it rolled off and dripped into the #3 spark plug boot. Because of the metal heat shield on the boot, it made the perfect collection storm. Over time oil got between the boot and spark plug head and baked on caused a isolation of the metal contacts.

Purchased a new plug and cleaned the boot, and all is running well. I will replace the boot but AutoZone only sells by the set and I will purchase a new set on line.

Moral of the story- that little oil waste I was careless about caused more than a bad smell on a hot exhaust manifold, over time is caused a cylinder misfire.
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Old 01-26-2011, 08:13 PM   #2
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It'* all about keeping things clean. A dirty engine is a unhappy engine.
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Old 01-26-2011, 08:26 PM   #3
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On all the 3800'* I owned (4) I oulled them knuckle gashing heat shields off and never had a problem. Weird but it seemed my spark plug boots lasted longer without them. Changing plugs sure got easier.
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Old 01-26-2011, 08:32 PM   #4
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Good too know the shields ca be thought of as optional!
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Old 01-26-2011, 09:10 PM   #5
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Funny over the years I owned Buicks and an Olds. You know it'* cramped, sharp things abound, it freaking hot back there, and you should do it cold, and not in a hurry. Always seemed to be the opposite when it came time to do them.
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Old 01-27-2011, 12:17 AM   #6
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I pulled all my heat shields off, never had a problem.
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