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Discussion Starter #1
I recently bought a '83 Spider that has been sitting for a year or so, It won't start, and I am hoping to get some advice as how to trouble shoot the problem. I have drained and replaced the gas, also replaced inline fuel pump and checked the fuel pump located in the tank. I have pressure to the fuel rail and am thinking the injectors need to be replaced. I wouldn't think that sitting for a year would cause them to fail, Is there any way I can determine for sure that the injectors are bad? Thanks in advance for your advice!

Dan
 

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What is making you think the injectors are faulty? Are you certain there is spark? At the right time? (It is not uncommon for the distributor to be 180 degrees off - the car can run fine but the spark plug wires have to installed correctly for the distributor's 'new' position)

If there is no spark the drive relay (located next to the FI computor) does not get a 'the engine is cranking/running' signal and it (the drive relay) thus does not send the signal to squirt fuel.

The L-jet is a whole system. Everything has to work for anything to work. See the link to the Spider L-jet page in my sig block (the same page Tifosi has directed you to).

Finally, I do think that injectors left sitting unused for a year could clog up - especially it they were not prepared for storage (fuel treatment). Consider removing them and sending them out for cleaning/testing. I sent the injectors from our '84 Spider to Cruzin Performance. (There are other places that offer similar service but I had excellent service there). Keep in mind that the injectors in our Spiders cannot be 'rebuilt'. They can be cleaned, the screens and external seals replaced but they cannot be dis-assembled and 'rebuilt'. So be wary of anyone offering you 'rebuilt' injectors...
 

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Discussion Starter #4
'83 Spider with injector problems??

Thanks for the web page, I will take a close look at it. I do know I have spark, so that shouldn't be causing the problem. I have a shop manual covering '85 and newer Spiders, is the injector system the same as my '83. It looks like changing the injectors is a fairly easy job. Anything I should be careful of?

Best,
Dan
 

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I have a shop manual covering '85 and newer Spiders, is the injector system the same as my '83.
Injector systems are the same. The main differences would likely be in the operation of the VVT. The earlier models have a centrifugally activated VVT, the later models control it with a solenoid. The switch was sometime in the late '83- early '84 model year range.

It looks like changing the injectors is a fairly easy job. Anything I should be careful of?
Obviously the fuel lines/fuel rail will be under pressure. Expect a squirt of gasoline when you loosen the first connector.

There is a bolt on the underside of the fuel rail. Removing that bolt (and the two allen head screws at each injector) will allow you to remove the rail/injectors as an assembly. The bolt underneath is impossible to see but you can get your hand in underneath by removing the coolant reservoir.

The short hoses from fuel rail to injectors is an odd size (7mm ID IIRC). I couldn't find that size locally. 1/4" is slightly small and 5/16" is slightly big. Some have reported using the 5/16" with no problems by adding hose clamps but I bought a couple of feet of the proper size hose from IAP.

The shop manual describes using a 'welder' to cut off the hoses. From the sketch that must translate as a soldering gun. The point being to avoid scratching the hose barbs on the rail & injectors by hacking away with a knife. (might lead to leaks) I did cut off the hoses by carefully slicing the hose and avoiding cutting too deeply.

The shop manual also says to cut off the cup-shaped washers. If you don't you should be able to re-use them.

With the proper size/length hose re-installed the cup shaped washers prevent the hose from loosening. Be sure to slip the cup washers on before you push the new hose on (don't ask...).
 

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Discussion Starter #7
'83 Alpha Spider Injector problems

Hi Eric,

Thanks for your help! I'll update my post as I proceed. The firing order is correct, I pulled the plugs out and poured a bit of gas in each cylinder. Started right up, but only ran for a second or two.

Best,
Dan
 

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A couple of easy things you might want to do before you get too deep into injector replacement is to 1) clean the fuse box and replace the fuses (even if they LOOK good) & B) clean and tighten the ground connections on the engine. Those ground connections are there for the computer(s). If they get iffy - no go!

All that is explained in the L-jet page, too.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
'83 Spider injector problems.......

Hi Eric, and others,

Here is where I'm at... Sometimes when I try to start it, it will start for about 1 second, then die. Sometimes it will try to start but never actually start, and sometimes it doesn't try at all, as though it isn't getting gas at all. I replaced both fuel pumps, and there is fuel to the rail, although I haven't actually checked fuel pressure. The car runs if you spray starter fluid into the intake plenum. If I'm correct, that means the engine is getting spark, the timing is close enough for the engine to run, flywheel sensors are functional, battery voltage is up, and drive relay is functioning ok. There is pressure to the fuel rail, but when I pulled the CSI off, it didn't spray a drop. I checked the temperature sensor, and it read 70.5 ohms cold, which I believe means it isn't functioning properly, as it should read 0 when cold. Although the sensor doesn't appear to be working properly, I don't think it would keep the car from starting/running at all. Especially when I started the car with ether, and it wouldn't keep running. That indicates to me that there is no fuel getting to the cylinders. Correct me if I'm wrong, but if the sensor is bad, can you jump the connector to simulate a cold start, as that reproduces a 0 ohm reading.

I am going to clean the connector to the ECU next, in hopes of a bad ground or corroded contacts. Just wondering if you have any other suggestions?

Thanks,
Dan
 

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If I'm correct, that means the engine is getting spark, the timing is close enough for the engine to run...
Sounds likely.

flywheel sensors are functional, battery voltage is up, and drive relay is functioning ok.
Seems like a lot of assumptions. Did you test the flywheel sensors? Have you measured battery voltage during cranking? How have you verified the drive relay's function?

when I pulled the CSI off, it didn't spray a drop. I checked the temperature sensor, and it read 70.5 ohms cold, which I believe means it isn't functioning properly, as it should read 0 when cold.
How cold was cold? From the L-jet page:
If the temp. is 14F/-10C you should read 7-12K ohms. If the temp is 68F/20C you should read 2-3k ohms, and the car is fully warmed up to 176F/80C you should only read 250-400 ohms.
I am going to clean the connector to the ECU next, in hopes of a bad ground or corroded contacts. Just wondering if you have any other suggestions?
That sounds like a good idea. Also (perhaps first) clean the grounds on the intake & the cam cover. These are the grounds for the ECU's. And, if I understand the operation corretcly, the ECU controls injector firing by controlling their ground connections. Thus, an iffy ground connection needs to be eliminated.
 

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One other thought. Have you checked for the presence and proper operation of an inertia fuel shut-off switch? Earlier models had them then they were considered redundant by '83 or '84 and eliminated.

The inertia switch is a black box about the size of a pack of cigarettes located on the firewall just inboard of the windshield washer reservoir. It has a button on top to re-set it in the event a jolt (like an accident) trips it. Some have reported the switch gets troublesome when they get old.

If you have one in your car and re-setting it doesn't help you can by-pass it. There are two wires connected to the bottom. Simply jumper those two wires together.
 

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ghnl said:
And, if I understand the operation correctly, the ECU controls injector firing by controlling their ground connections. Thus, an iffy ground connection needs to be eliminated.
You understand perfectly :)
 

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I checked the temperature sensor, and it read 70.5 ohms cold, which I believe means it isn't functioning properly,... Although the sensor doesn't appear to be working properly, I don't think it would keep the car from starting/running at all.
This resistance value is critical as the ECU uses it to calculate injector pulsewidth (injector on time). Lack of a proper value could cause a no start. You could, for testing purposes, insert a 5-6k ohm ¼ watt resistor in the coolant temp sensor harness connector to simulate a cold engine.

There is pressure to the fuel rail, but when I pulled the CSI off, it didn't spray a drop.
After about 5-6 seconds of cranking, the thermo-time switch will open causing the CSI to stop spraying fuel. To test the CSI, either check it first or apply battery voltage directly to the CSI.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
'83 Spider with injector problems...

Morning!

Another day, another chance to figure out what's wrong with this little beauty.

Yesterday checked/cleaned ground connections, pulled ECU and cleaned contacts and connector. Cleaned fuse box, and checked all fuses. Replaced 5 and 8 with new ones. Checked battery voltage when cranking and it is 11+ volts, which should be good enough to activate ECU. Drive relay clicks when you turn key on, but banged on it a bit to see if that was of any help.

Also checked Inertia fuel shut-off switch, and it had already been jumped out of the circuit.

Car is still dead as a doornail.

Today I am going to check flywheel sensors.

Jim mentioned applying battery voltage to the CSI to check for function. Does that mean 12 volts? If so is there a + and - side?

I am wondering if there any way to see if injectors are getting a signal from the ECU? First thing I did last fall when I bought the car was borrow a noid light kit, and light did activate when I tried to start the car. Is that a good way to check system? Also, can I check the ECU for function? My son had an Eclipse with all kinds of problems, turned out to be a bad computer...

What it looks like to me is either no signal to injectors, or injectors pretty much completely plugged, so I am getting to the point of pulling injectors...

Thanks as always for everyone's input!

Dan
 

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The noid light is a good method, yes. Or at least good enough to let you know if there's actual pulses getting to the injectors. (won't tell you if they're gummed up and not moving though)

Unfortunately there's no real way to test the ECU unless you can lay hands on Bosch unobtanium diagnostic tool #0.684.100.202 or happen to have a known good ECU floating around to swap in.

Polarity shouldn't really matter for a direct voltage (yes, 12V) test on an injector, but you only want to hook it up momentarily lest you burn out the internal winding.

Just quick jabs with the voltage and listen for it to click (kind of like a relay sound actually) or a bit of fuel spray if it's still hooked up to a pressurized line.

If you get no click or spray, it's either gummed up or burnt out, and far more likely the former rather than the latter.

Double check the inertia switch bypass/jumper the make sure it's a good solid clean connection.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
'83 Spider with injector problems...

Thanks for the advice. I thought about double checking the jumpered inertial switch, and will definetly do that. I am also going to pull the CSI and see if I get a fuel spray when applying voltage.

Dan
 

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You mention that it'll run for a few moments on starting fluid sprayed into the intake plenum. You are re-installing all of the intake ducts & hoses, correct? The L-jet won't run if the intake ducts are not in place (and intact - no cracks/loose hoses, etc).

You should probably remove the injectors leaving them attached to the fuel rail. Two allen head screws/injector plus one bolt (10mm wrench/socket) underneath. Move the coolant reservoir to give you some room to reach in underneath and remove that bolt.

Position the injectors on the intake (leaving the fuel lines attached) and you can then watch them for fuel spray during cranking. Be careful working with fuel!

Maybe they are partially gummed up and just not able to squirt enough fuel to get it running. If so, remove them for cleaning (Cruzin Performance) is the one I used.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
'83 spider with injector problems...

Update on problems...

I checked the CSI by applying voltage while pressurized and not a drop of fuel came out. I pulled the fuel rail and had the same result. Next step is to replace injectors, or have mine cleaned. I checked at the local Auto Zone and they have replacement injectors made by GP-Sorensen ($45), part # 800-1507N, and I am wondering if anyone has any experiance with them? The fuel hose is about an inch too short, and the injector tip looks to be about
1/4" shorter than the Bosch. Tip is metal instead of ceramic. They also make a CSI ($125). I have read information that nobody rebuilds injectors, and also that NOS injectors may have bad O rings. I am looking for input as to my next step. I understand my injectors can be refurbished, can my CSI be as well? I am sure hoping this solves my problems...

Dan
 

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Next step is to replace injectors, or have mine cleaned.
Actually the next step should be to unhook the return line at the regulator and crank the engine to see if any fuel comes out, then reconnect return line.

If no fuel at return, then uncouple the feed line at the rail and see if any fuel comes out and if it has a good amount of pressure. (more than 45psi if coupling the gauge directly to the feed line with no return or other means of relieving pressure)

If no fuel with the first test, move to the second.

If fuel with the first test, then plug/clamp shut the return line and check for proper to high pressure and the injector(s) again. (suspect regulator)

If no fuel w/first or second test, or second test cannot supply high pressure (more than 45psi) with return line plugged, suspect a feed issue (pump(s), relay for pump(s) etc)


If fuel w/first, proper to high pressure w/second then worry about the injectors.

Ideally you'd have a pressure gauge connected with a T so that you could check the regulator, regular pressure and feed pressure without having to do more than pinch off the return line.
 

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Although I think the cleaning would be well advised, (I used Cruzin Performance and was pleased with the service), I agree with Tifosi that before you rush into replacing injectors you should figure out why nothing is happening. It seems unlikely that all 5 (including the CSI) would be totally plugged up & defective at the same time. If they were squirting erractically &/or with poor spray patterns then cleaning/replacing would be the next step.

Diagnose first - replace parts second!

FWIW, I did buy a replacement injector from Advance Auto Parts - IIRC it was a GP-Soreson brand and the cost was $40-$45 - sounds like the part you are describing. It fit fine and worked well but the included fuel hose is too short. I bought a couple of feet of the correct size (ID) from IAP. I could not locate the right size FI hose locally.
 
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