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  1. #1

    Default 2.3T No Spark, out of ideas

    Hey guys, the end of this build has been frustrating to say the least. The motor is from a 1988 Turbo Coupe and I am having issues getting the coil to fire. Below is a list of things I know
    Coil has 12V
    ICM has 12V with key on and start wire has 12V when cranking
    Coil voltage drops to 6 or 7 when cranking... which is weird.
    The distributor spins
    The distributor is brand new, so is the module
    I have a known working module from a working car and it makes no difference
    Test light is showing zero spark from the coil while cranking
    The spout and pip wires go to their proper locations and seem to be undamaged
    I can sometimes get the coil to spark once by rotating the distributor by hand

    What is bugging me is the voltage drop at the coil during cranking. I am thinking that 7 volts is not enough to fire the coil. I have no idea why its dropping that low during cranking.

  2. #2


    "How to solve an efi no start"
    2 1986 cougars (both 4 eyed and 5.0)
    1 1987 cougar

  3. #3


    Went through the list, many times. The coil, module, and distributor are brand new. They all have voltage to the proper location. The coil even sparks when rotating the distributor by hand.

    HOWEVER, when I crank the motor... there is no spark. The voltage to the coil drops below operating levels. "Out of ideas" implies that I've been through the basics, made an LED test light, used the "search" function. I need a little bit more insight than a no start list.

  4. #4
    FEP Supporter ccurtin's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Acworth, GA


    Have you looked at the threads on TurboFord about 'no spark'? Lots of 2.3T specific information over there.
    I'm an FEP Paid Supporter and proud of it. Are you?

    1984 Capri Turbo RS - Alive after 7 years! Build Thread
    2006 Mustang GT - daily driver

  5. #5


    Check coil resistance values, plugs/coil wire resistance/continuity?...
    1986 Mustang convertible 3.8L ---> BUILD THREAD
    1983 Mercury Cougar 3.8L LS
    1986 Ford Thunderbird 5.0L ELAN
    1966 Ford Fairlane sedan 200-6
    1966 Ford Fairlane GT (390ci 4spd)
    1981 Mercury Marquis Brougham
    1980 Capri RS Turbo
    1971 Mustang Fastback
    1974 Pontiac Luxury LeMans

  6. #6
    FEP Supporter 4-barrel Mike's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Portland, Oregon


    In the past, I've screwed the wiring of several hot rods by not wiring the ignition with the starter engaged. Have you tried starting it with a remote starter switch on the starter solenoid?

    1985 ascMcLaren 5.0 SC Roadster
    My '78 Fairmont build -

  7. #7


    Just because a part is brand new doesn't mean it works.

    That link shows you how to trouble shoot every part that will keep the car from running, including the coil. But if its all new and you know what you are doing and exactly what's wrong, then nevermind, i wont help ya fix it.
    2 1986 cougars (both 4 eyed and 5.0)
    1 1987 cougar

  8. #8
    FEP Senior Member E2ZZGLX's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Broomfield Colorado


    Fuseable links at the solenoid? Last 2 turbo cars I picked up after the PO swapped out most everything and gave up on them found both cars had one or more blown...and they "looked" good.
    Current keepers...
    77 Cobra II

    80 Bobcat Sport
    82 GT-first new car is back home!
    85 ASC Coupe
    86 SVO
    86 Escort GT
    88 Ranger GT

  9. #9
    FEP Supporter 82GTforME's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Western Canada
    Blog Entries


    How about the engine grounds?

    Are you using the original ignition system wiring or parts of it? What you are describing about the voltage drop sounds like the ballast resistor in the ingnition.

    I'm not super familiar with them but do they not limit voltage when the key is in the "run" position not crank? Or is it the other way around and this is correct?
    Quote Originally Posted by Travis T View Post
    I think this is my favorite car on the site right now.
    Quote Originally Posted by BLUECRAPI
    This is the best thread on the internet.
    1982-1C (Black) T-Top GT RestoMod:
    1986-9L (Oxford White) SVO:
    1979 (85:Tangerine) Coupe (my son's):
    1979 (3F:Light Medium Blue) Coupe (one day to be my other son's!)!

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