North American Turbocoupe Organization



Random no start....
Kuch Offline
Senior Member
#1
I went to go to work yesterday in the 88TC and the old girl wouldn't start. It cranked fine, tried multiple times, but never started. Bummed out, I went to the other car and drove in and started researching common issues like no spark and such. Also thinking about timing belt and fuel pump. Car has a new Motorcraft TFI and new PIP installed two years ago, new cap, rotor, plugs, new 255 fuel pump, all two years old. Was planning on testing the TFI and PIP when I got home and checking the timing belt. Got home checked it real quick, belts good, tried to start it and started right up. WTF. So, you guys have any ideas on why a random no start issue like that? I just drove it the day before, has a new battery, new pos and neg battery cables. Kinda makes me wonder if she will give me another rando no start in the future. Drove it to work this morning and she started right up again. Just seems weird. Thanks
1988 Turbo Coupe, Black/Black, 5 Speed, Moonroof,  T3/T4 50 trim, ported E6, 255LPH, BBK AFPR, 3" DP dual 2.5" w Hooker Maxflows, MGW shifter, K&N, Gillis valve, RR cam, Koni's
1964 Ford Galaxie 500XL, 390 6V, 4 Speed, Vast and fast
1960 Ford Starliner, 292 Y Block, 3 Speed, slow and low
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Jeff K Offline
Administrator
#2
First step is to run codes. Specifically look for any CM codes related to PIP (stator) code 14, TFI IDM code 16, or any VAM or ECT codes.
Jeff Korn

88 Turbo Coupe: Intake and exhaust mods, T3 turbo at 24 psi, forced air IC, water injection, BPV, Ranger cam, subframes, etc., etc.
86 Tbird 5.0 (original owner): intake, exhaust, valvetrain mods, 100 HP N2O, ignition, gears, suspension, etc., etc.
05 Taurus SEL Duratec daily driver
04 Taurus Duratec (wifes car)
02 Pontiac Grand Prix GT
95 Taurus GL Vulcan winter beater
67 Honda 450 Super Sport - completely customized
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Kuch Offline
Senior Member
#3
Yeah, going to have to pull the codes to see if any come up.
1988 Turbo Coupe, Black/Black, 5 Speed, Moonroof,  T3/T4 50 trim, ported E6, 255LPH, BBK AFPR, 3" DP dual 2.5" w Hooker Maxflows, MGW shifter, K&N, Gillis valve, RR cam, Koni's
1964 Ford Galaxie 500XL, 390 6V, 4 Speed, Vast and fast
1960 Ford Starliner, 292 Y Block, 3 Speed, slow and low
Reply

anasazi4st Offline
Senior Member
#4
(06-02-2020, 01:32 PM)I’ll Ok I’m Kuch Wrote: I went to go to work yesterday in the 88TC and the old girl wouldn't start. It cranked fine, tried multiple times, but never started. Bummed out, I went to the other car and drove in and started researching common issues like no spark and such. Also thinking about timing belt and fuel pump. Car has a new Motorcraft TFI and new PIP installed two years ago, new cap, rotor, plugs, new 255 fuel pump, all two years old. Was planning on testing the TFI and PIP when I got home and checking the timing belt. Got home checked it real quick, belts good, tried to start it and started right up. WTF. So, you guys have any ideas on why a random no start issue like that? I just drove it the day before, has a new battery, new pos and neg battery cables. Kinda makes me wonder if she will give me another rando no start in the future. Drove it to work this morning and she started right up again. Just seems weird. Thanks

Do you have an alarm or security system installed? My relay on mine went bad, and the car would intermittently not start. It would also die on the freeway, which led to me doing the stupid thing of quickly turning the key off and on whilst going about 60. The engine caught and held, but I saw in my mirror (it was nighttime) a big fireball come out of the exhaust, which I guess was all the unburned fuel that was present in the cylinders. Destroyed the catalytic converter.
Another proud dues-paying member.

1987 Turbo Coupe w/T5OD, 8.8 axle, grey smoke; most options. Got it in 1991 with 41K miles: 3 turbos, 2 heater cores, 1 T5OD full rebuild, 5 clutches, 1 head gasket, 2 Teves II ABS units, etc. later....
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Kuch Offline
Senior Member
#5
Neg, no alarm system on mine, but your story about engine dying while driving reminds me of my old TC I drove in the late 90's. It was an 87 and the ignition switch was bad so when I would be driving everything would shut down randomly, so I would have to turn the ignition switch off and back on again to make sure it kept going. At the time I was driving a lot around Brooklyn, Staten Island, and NJ and I would be on some very busy roads doing this, but I was only 25, so what could go wrong right.
1988 Turbo Coupe, Black/Black, 5 Speed, Moonroof,  T3/T4 50 trim, ported E6, 255LPH, BBK AFPR, 3" DP dual 2.5" w Hooker Maxflows, MGW shifter, K&N, Gillis valve, RR cam, Koni's
1964 Ford Galaxie 500XL, 390 6V, 4 Speed, Vast and fast
1960 Ford Starliner, 292 Y Block, 3 Speed, slow and low
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vegas_ss Offline
Senior Member
#6
When the no start happens do you hear the fuel pump prime when the ignition switch is put in the run position? I had an issue with the inertia fuel pump switch in the trunk acting up... seemed to be problematic when cold.
1987 TC, 5sp, Boport Stage 3 Head/2.1 Cam
1996 Impala SS
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Kuch Offline
Senior Member
#7
Vegas, that's a good idea and hadn't thought of that switch. I thought I heard the pump run, bur was a few days ago and now not positive. Did you replace the switch or clean the contacts on it?
1988 Turbo Coupe, Black/Black, 5 Speed, Moonroof,  T3/T4 50 trim, ported E6, 255LPH, BBK AFPR, 3" DP dual 2.5" w Hooker Maxflows, MGW shifter, K&N, Gillis valve, RR cam, Koni's
1964 Ford Galaxie 500XL, 390 6V, 4 Speed, Vast and fast
1960 Ford Starliner, 292 Y Block, 3 Speed, slow and low
Reply

Rob H Offline
Member
#8
I used to have that problem and I ended up replacing the inertia switch. Super annoying, car would be fine, come back and wouldn't start.
If I recall correctly, when it was acting up the fuel pump would not run. Pretty sure that's what it's supposed to do, cut power to the fuel pump in an accident. I would jiggle the inertia switch, get back in and it would fire right up.
It's behind the trunk liner by the drivers side tail light.
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Jeff K Offline
Administrator
#9
I had the inertia switch fail intermittently 15 or so years ago. Occasional no start and even worse, random engine stall with loss of power steering (i.e., HARD HARD to steer at low speeds!!). To troubleshoot I hooked a test light with a LONG pair of wires across the inertia switch terminals with the test light in the cabin where I could see it. Went for a drive. When engine died light went on indicating open inertia switch.

The problem is that in the TC the inertia switch carries the full fuel pump current while in most Fords of that era only carries the 100 or so mA for the fuel pump relay coil. With a high volume / pressure fuel pump like the Walbro 255 lph pump many of us run the pump current is higher than the stock 88 lph pump so the inertia switch carries higher currents causing it to fail.

I wrote a tech article years ago about adding an extra relay it the trunk at the inertia switch so it only carries the relay coil current instead of the full pump current. It should be in the tech articles section.
Jeff Korn

88 Turbo Coupe: Intake and exhaust mods, T3 turbo at 24 psi, forced air IC, water injection, BPV, Ranger cam, subframes, etc., etc.
86 Tbird 5.0 (original owner): intake, exhaust, valvetrain mods, 100 HP N2O, ignition, gears, suspension, etc., etc.
05 Taurus SEL Duratec daily driver
04 Taurus Duratec (wifes car)
02 Pontiac Grand Prix GT
95 Taurus GL Vulcan winter beater
67 Honda 450 Super Sport - completely customized
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Kuch Offline
Senior Member
#10
Jeff,
That is very interesting and makes sense. I do run a 255 pump as well. I will check out the tech section for the write up. Thanks for the info
1988 Turbo Coupe, Black/Black, 5 Speed, Moonroof,  T3/T4 50 trim, ported E6, 255LPH, BBK AFPR, 3" DP dual 2.5" w Hooker Maxflows, MGW shifter, K&N, Gillis valve, RR cam, Koni's
1964 Ford Galaxie 500XL, 390 6V, 4 Speed, Vast and fast
1960 Ford Starliner, 292 Y Block, 3 Speed, slow and low
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