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celdred

Please help save my vacation!

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celdred

Hey, summer is short here in Vermont and wouldn't you know my always dependable '01 Response died on first day of summer vacation... I was pulling a skier and it just quit...no spark

I went through all the trouble shooting steps associated with no spark and finally got spark back after replacing Ignition Control Module. I was so happy with myself for doing it on my own (with the help of the Crew after researching "no spark" for a couple hours) Anyway, got her purring again, headed out to pull a friends kid and 8 minutes or so later it died again.

I put her back on the lift and will attempt to fix her again in the morning. Any ideas what could cause an Ignition Control Module to go bad in a matter of minutes? I assume something must be shorting it out but just not sure what it could be. Kill switch has been bi-passed and fuel pump cycles on turning key to on position. All 3 relays have been checked by swapping them to starter position and verifying starter works. Battery is charged and I get 12.56 volts at the purple wire on the ignition coil with key in on pos. Oh, and I did coat the back of the ICM with contact grease before installing.

One thing...I bought the ignition control module for a 1993 chevy K1500 pickup from local Auto parts shop as I read on here that it was an exact match and in fact it was a perfect fit. Part was only $40 compared to $195 for marine version online and I figured it was worth a try to get back on the water quick and I could always order marine grade later and swap it out.

Please, if you have any advice that I could try in the morning to salvage vacation with my boys it would be most appreciated. Thanks!

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jshaff

I would pick up a fuel pressure gauge and check quickly, my fuel pump exhibited similar behaviors when it died, it would still make a sound when you cycle it on, however it was not providing enough for the boat to run. It died all of a sudden while pulling a surfer, i was able to get it to start once or twice more for short periods of time, but eventually it just quit.

Edited by jshaff

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stags79

If you run out of options the mechanic that I use is great. If your near burlington give Ken at ski marine in williston a call. I use him any time I can't figure stuff out on my own. And in a pinch I'm sure he'll do anything he can to get you up and running.

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Bozboat

Replace the coil, bad coil can shorten the life of the ignition control module. Also did you put the dielectric grease down on the down side of the ignition control module, that supposedly helps disapate the heat off the ICM

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Soon2BV

and i would replace the module with a marine version - there is a reason they cost more.

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celdred

Thanks guys! Tvano - i found and used your trouble shooting guide and it was huge help in tracking down the faulty ICM.

Don't think it's fuel related as boat runs fine and then dies with "no spark"

I'll give Ken at ski marine a call in the morning and see if he has any ideas and perhaps be picking up a new coil to go along with another ICM. Wish I had time to take it in and get a professional mechanic to look at it but willing to try a few more things on my own to get back out there.

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celdred

and i would replace the module with a marine version - there is a reason they cost more.

Yes...I would eventually but for $40 figured it might save my vacation as I wasn't close to a boat dealer with proper part. That said, my boat lives on a covered lift and never has water in the bilge so not sure it qualifies as harsh marine conditions. Figure most pickup trucks ICM's live a harder life...

Now I'm gun shy to drop a $200 marine grade ICM in there only to have it fail after a few minutes....wish there was a way to tell what caused the first one to fail followed shortly by it's albeit cheap replacement.

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celdred

Replace the coil, bad coil can shorten the life of the ignition control module. Also did you put the dielectric grease down on the down side of the ignition control module, that supposedly helps disapate the heat off the ICM

Yes, I liberally coated the back of the ICM with the dielectric grease the manufacturer supplied.

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grandude

There is a pick up coil inside the distributor. It is under the aluminum plate. The wire going to the ignition module is connected to this. I forget the actual steps for testing this, but the no spark symptoms you have described seem to indicate this could be it. You can buy it at the auto parts store. You do have to pull the distributor to change it out but It's not a real difficult part to change. Search how to replace a distributor pick up coil. It will describe the same no spark condition and have a bunch of how to articles. Wish i could be of more help describing but been a year or so since I've done one.

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celdred

There is a pick up coil inside the distributor. It is under the aluminum plate. The wire going to the ignition module is connected to this. I forget the actual steps for testing this, but the no spark symptoms you have described seem to indicate this could be it. You can buy it at the auto parts store. You do have to pull the distributor to change it out but It's not a real difficult part to change. Search how to replace a distributor pick up coil. It will describe the same no spark condition and have a bunch of how to articles. Wish i could be of more help describing but been a year or so since I've done one.

Thanks! I'll do some research and check out the pick up coil. Assume that if I pull the distributor then I need to worry about timing and what not so that might get tricky, But perhaps my research will give me some pointers on how to mark things so it goes back identical to way it comes off. Boat runs so good (when it has spark) and I don't want to mess that up.

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grandude

You just remove the cap. Use a marker and mark the orientation of the rotor on the plate. then use a something that can mark on black to mark the base of the distributor and the intake manifold. Just mark across both surfaces. You'll just line up the marks when you put it back together. It's not that hard, it just seems intimidating.

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celdred

You just remove the cap. Use a marker and mark the orientation of the rotor on the plate. then use a something that can mark on black to mark the base of the distributor and the intake manifold. Just mark across both surfaces. You'll just line up the marks when you put it back together. It's not that hard, it just seems intimidating.

ok...thanks sounds like something I can handle. Everyone is telling me just to drop in another ICM as it's pretty unlikely it's the pick up or ignition coil so I may try that after checking all my grounds. If it craps out again I know I have to dig deeper (Coils, ???) Thanks and I'll let you guys know how today plays out once I get back out to the lake.

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grandude

I wish you luck and will watch to see what the final fix is. Not sure why someone has given you the idea that it's unlikely to have a bad pick up coil, especially after burning up two ignition modules. The ignition module hooks directly up to the pick up coil. The cost of the pick up coil is about $30. I've seen several go bad.

Let us know .

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celdred

I wish you luck and will watch to see what the final fix is. Not sure why someone has given you the idea that it's unlikely to have a bad pick up coil, especially after burning up two ignition modules. The ignition module hooks directly up to the pick up coil. The cost of the pick up coil is about $30. I've seen several go bad.

Let us know .

Well...it appears you might be onto something with the pick up coil. After putting in and burning a 3rd Ignition module (in about 5 minutes of running this time) I am at a loss. This after talking to my car mechanic, Peter at Smooth Water Marine and a local boat mechanic. But, to their credit they said why not rule out that you didn't buy a faulty ICM by trying it again and then dig further. So dig I will.

I did check all the grounds very diligently along with unplugging, inspecting and applying dielectric grease to the canon plug before putting in the 2nd new ICM. I was very hopeful as I ran the boat through different speeds within sight of the dock so my kid could come rescue me if it cut out and unfortunately he didn't have to wait long.

So...I check the resistance of the pick up coil before leaving the lake tonight and it read 877 ohms. I have no idea if that's good or bad or even helpful in diagnosing a bad pick-up coil but figured it might be valuable to someone here.

So, I guess I buy another ICM and a pick-up coil tomorrow and pray 3 is my lucky number. I'm at a bit of a loss on how to remove the rotor and the guts directly below to get at the pick-up but will search the CREW if nobody sees this and has advice. Thanks again for all the helpful adice. -C

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celdred

Hey again. Installed a 2nd new ICM in my 2001 Response today and it failed after 5 minutes of running. This after i checked all grounds, unplugged, looked for issues with Canon Plug and reinstalled.

Any thought as to if a temperature sensor could be causing this? Doubtful since even after the boat sits overnight I get no spark once the ICM goes bad. Plus I would think temp sensor would sent boat into limp mode by cutting fuel, limiting rpms, etc. rather than cutting spark. Besides, even once it's cool I can't get spark back without replacing the ICM and then it's cooked after just a few minutes of run time. Hmmm???

I'm going to try pick-up coil + another new ICM tomorrow. Then I guess it would be onto the ignition coil, along with what would be a 5th ICM if you count the original that failed sending me down this road. Any better ideas? pick-up coil measured 877 ohms when I removed the 3rd burned up ICM this afternoon. Thanks in advance for any and all ideas.

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shawndoggy

^^^ Love this! Thanks for circling back celdred. Believe it or not these sorts of posts are invaluable for the next guy who will be frantically googling how to fix his boat while he's on his family vacation.

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celdred

Absoulutely...I'm actually looking forward to the day I can pay it forward by walking someone through this procedure.

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