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Old 01-31-2007, 07:41 PM   #1
SaturnManiac
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Default The cylinder 4 misfire curse

Well my car's been having a cylinder 4 misfire for a while now, it's not all the time. The SES light comes on about once every tank of gas, and doesn't stay on for more than 1/8 of that tank. But, anyways, I'm almost running out of options here.

So far I've replaced:
Spark plugs with NGK coppers, gapped at .040"
Spark plug wires
Fuel injector on cylinder 4
Swapped out coilpacks and DIS module with known good ones
Cleaned EGR valve (Although that probably wouldn't case the misfire.)
Cleaned Throttle Body (Also, I doubt that would case a misfire, LOL.)
Also ran a compression test, and that turned out fine.

So I'm thinking the next step is to check the fuel injector wiring.


But I was also wondering, since I confirmed I have a junkyard engine in my car (Confirmed that when I swapped out the coilpacks and DIS module), what wiring would that have changed or touched that I might not be thinking about?! Come on Low Saturn, I'm sure you know every wire removed during an engine swap


And, yes I'm going to fix this, not going to do like some of my friends said and just put tape over the light. I won't give up!!!!

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Old 01-31-2007, 11:00 PM   #2
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Default Re: The cylinder 4 misfire curse

Two things to try. Listen to the fuel injector with a stethoscope or an ear against a long screwdriver and see if it's clicking. If it is, the wiring's probably okay. Then try swapping the injector to with one on another cylinder to see if the miss moves. If it does, the injector's bad.

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Old 01-31-2007, 11:22 PM   #3
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Default Re: The cylinder 4 misfire curse

I wonder if the intake manifold gasket is starting to leak air at the #4 intake port.
With the car idling,spray some brake or carb cleaner around the #4 intake port where its bolted to the cylinder head.If the idle changes,then that might be your problem.

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Old 02-01-2007, 01:27 AM   #4
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Default Re: The cylinder 4 misfire curse

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Originally Posted by mkuz13 View Post
I wonder if the intake manifold gasket is starting to leak air at the #4 intake port.
my thoughts exactly. although, thats where the common coolant leak is on these plastic intake manifolds. you might just be getting coolant in with the intake air. there's a new two piece design gasket. it has a seperate coolant portion aside from the intake air side.

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Old 02-01-2007, 01:56 AM   #5
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Default Re: The cylinder 4 misfire curse

well, you seem to have checked all the obvious, now since you confirmed a junkyard engine, is it possible you may be having an intermittent floating valve, this would be noticable in a slight knock in the upper part of the engine, while the miss is happening.

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Old 02-02-2007, 02:08 PM   #6
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Default Re: The cylinder 4 misfire curse

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Originally Posted by jerry dye View Post
well, you seem to have checked all the obvious, now since you confirmed a junkyard engine, is it possible you may be having an intermittent floating valve, this would be noticable in a slight knock in the upper part of the engine, while the miss is happening.
Wouldn't that show up on a compression test?! We did a compression test and it turned out fine. But I don't hear a knocking.

As for the intake manifold gasket, isn't that more common on the SOHC's, as doesn't it usually seem to affect cylinder 1 (I can't remember, I've read about it several times here before.) But I thought with that you usually lost coolant, well my coolant level is fine.


The only other thing that comes to mind, is since the engine was swapped, not sure with what year engine, (I need to go look and get the year code off of it), could it be something like I just need my computer reprogrammed to work with that engine?! I don't know, I've never done an engine swap on these cars, haven't even seen it done.

I was just curious also if there was any other wiring I might be leaving out that could cause it that could've possibly not gotten connected properly or perhaps got pinched during the engine swap....I know these cars have alot of electrical stuff on them...so I just felt like double checking.


BarnOwl, it is so funny that you mention the long screwdriver trick, I taught that to one of my friends and he thought I was a redneck for knowing that, LOL.

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Old 02-02-2007, 02:23 PM   #7
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Default Re: The cylinder 4 misfire curse

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Originally Posted by SaturnManiac View Post
BarnOwl, it is so funny that you mention the long screwdriver trick, I taught that to one of my friends and he thought I was a redneck for knowing that, LOL.
lol You have seen my steering wheel puller (In my gallery.) for '99 and up steering wheels that don't have threaded holes, right? I actually do have a stethoscope but, that screwdriver trick is older than dirt.

Actually ksion15 may have something. I seem to remember ssicarman posting something about that too. The thing is, if that's what was going on, you wouldn't be able to find it with the usual carb/brake cleaner trick. Also didn't you mention that you were losing some coolant recently and couldn't find the leak? It wouldn't be a common thing but, you've tried all the common things and some uncommon things.

All of the above said, if someone swapped in an engine and kept the old PCM, it's quite possible that you need a crankshaft relearn.

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Old 02-02-2007, 04:00 PM   #8
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Default Re: The cylinder 4 misfire curse

SSI, Madpogue and I have all told her that it is a possible intake gasket leak. She says no, and dismisses us. The plastic intakes dont really leak air like the SOHC, they leak coolant into #4 since it is right next to it.... It would explain your coolant light too!

http://www.saturnfans.com/forums/sho...ke+gasket+leak

Remember this? Does it not explain your issues to the letter? I would be shocked if it isnt it.

It is not common, but I have seen it more than once, they updated the design because the gasket would warp. It warped and leaked into #4 only as well as into the EGR port, thereby letting #4 get all of leaked coolant. Enough to cause a misfire condition.

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Old 02-03-2007, 12:13 AM   #9
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Default Re: The cylinder 4 misfire curse

The thing is I don't have a coolant leak anymore, that was a hose problem....that's why I said it probably isn't the intake manifold gasket leak.

Here's the thing though, wouldn't that get worse over time, say if I was leaking just air?! It hasn't gotten worse....actually it seems everything I do, it gets better for a while....or at least runs a little better, probably because newer and better parts.

I'm almost now into the theory that something is wrong with the engine even though it didn't show up on a compression test.

My friend told me if I send my oil off for an analysis, I might learn something, is that true?! I'm assuming they can tell you a little something about your engine by analyzing the oil.

I just need to do an MMO soak, it can't hurt, it can only help.....maybe do it next month before oil change.


Not saying it couldn't be the intake gasket, but I asked Saturn about it, and both retailers said that wasn't the problem.

Just curious, how much would Saturn charge me to install a new one?!


I'm not trying to be rude or anything.

Also, I was wondering could I just need a PCM reprogram for some odd reason?!

...
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Old 02-03-2007, 08:18 AM   #10
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Default Re: The cylinder 4 misfire curse

As I said previously, if you've got a junkyard engine in there, it's certainly possible that you need a crankshaft relearn.

As far as the oil analysis goes, it might confirm that it's the manifold gasket. We aren't talking air leaking in this case. The gasket is holding air. It's coolant leaking and probably not very much. I think it would show up in the oil if that's what's going on.

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