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HELP diagnosing crank no spark


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So I have a 2001 malibu with the indmar 5.7 that ran when it was winterized last fall so it basically sat all year outside with a leaky cover, I know I know.... I went to fire it up yesterday and it will crank but not spark. The gauges sweep and read fuel level (full), volts (13), and oil pressure reads when cranking. I have bypassed the safety switch and it does not help. I hooked up a fuel pressure gauge and it reads 40+, I replaced the ICM and coil still no spark, cleaned the distributor with a dremel tool, I don't know what else could be left.

Is there a way to check the ECM?

I have 12-13v and ground at the ICM and the Coil plugs, but I'm not sure about the signal wires anyone know what they are supposed to read?

I think it is not getting signal to fire for some reason. I don't believe the injectors are opening into the cylinders either but haven't confirmed that. Any ideas.

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That service manual would be great for a 2001 my ECM pin outs don't match that manual which is for a 2003. Anyone know where I could find that?

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I would absolutely change the cap and rotor.  Under the rotor there can be corrosion between the contacts and that will render the entire ignition system inoperative. 

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I have cleaned the cap and rotor well with a Dremel. The coil has power and ground, but I don't think it is getting any signal on the other two wires. I have pulled a plug and grounded it, no spark. I also tested the pickup coil today and it tested ok.

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Replace cap & rotor; cleaning does not remove problem if either has failed - and inexpensive easy change items that are considered consumable. Any idea on last time they were changed?

  • Like 2
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Seems like I read Somewhere about a pick up coil in the distributor under the ICM that could go bad?  See number 11 in the diagram. That or your replacement ICM is bad. (Assuming the obvious stuff has been checked like shift lever position and neutral switch.)

 

279A9A58-145E-4EA9-9CD1-5836C85ACCA9.jpeg

Edited by Bozboat
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19 hours ago, Bozboat said:

Seems like I read Somewhere about a pick up coil in the distributor under the ICM that could go bad?  See number 11 in the diagram. That or your replacement ICM is bad. (Assuming the obvious stuff has been checked like shift lever position and neutral switch.)

 

279A9A58-145E-4EA9-9CD1-5836C85ACCA9.jpeg

Thanks, I did test the pickup coil with a multi meter and it is testing fine. (infinite ohms)

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On 9/25/2021 at 11:13 AM, Gghost said:

That service manual would be great for a 2001 my ECM pin outs don't match that manual which is for a 2003. Anyone know where I could find that?

You can find a PCM or Marine Power manual for MEFI 2 easily, and they will be virtually identical to the Indmar version:

http://marinepowerusa.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/08/ELECTRONIC-FUEL-INJECTION-MEFI-1-2-5.7L-350CID-8.2L-502CID.pdf

https://www.planetnautique.com/CorrectCraftManuals/L190180.pdf

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Weird. Coil seemingly working but no spark. Also, what is that unit #14 above do? I think the ICM feeds into that. Sounds like the coil isn't being told to fire.

Steve B.

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consider...

  • remove a spark plug wire from distributor and attach it to the coil hi tension(center),
  • remove that plug from the block and ground the electrode while leaving that plug connected to the wire which in turn connects to the coil, 
  • remove the connector from the icm then cycle +12 volts on the coil primary.
  • you should see the spark at the spark plug gap if the plug, wire and coil are healthy. 

should give a warm / fuzzy that the coil is healthy.

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5 hours ago, Gghost said:

Thanks, I did test the pickup coil with a multi meter and it is testing fine. (infinite ohms)

Infinite?  That's not good for a pickup coil....

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On 9/26/2021 at 2:49 PM, justgary said:

You can find a PCM or Marine Power manual for MEFI 2 easily, and they will be virtually identical to the Indmar version:

http://marinepowerusa.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/08/ELECTRONIC-FUEL-INJECTION-MEFI-1-2-5.7L-350CID-8.2L-502CID.pdf

https://www.planetnautique.com/CorrectCraftManuals/L190180.pdf

I appreciate the reference but the ecu and pins are different on this boat. 

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Posted (edited)
On 9/26/2021 at 3:21 PM, Steve B. said:

Weird. Coil seemingly working but no spark. Also, what is that unit #14 above do? I think the ICM feeds into that. Sounds like the coil isn't being told to fire.

Steve B.

The coil has 12v power supplied to it, but I don't think it is getting signal (the ecu sends a 0-5 volt signal) to fire up. #14 is the ignition control module and is a common issue. I have replaced it.

Edited by Gghost
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On 9/26/2021 at 5:04 PM, electricjohn said:

Check your 3 relays.

I did move the relays around and same results.

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On 9/26/2021 at 5:07 PM, justgary said:

Infinite?  That's not good for a pickup coil....

The manual says it should read infinite. Just FYI, The pickup coil is under the distributor. Different from the main coil mounted on the engine. 

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2 hours ago, Gghost said:

I appreciate the reference but the ecu and pins are different on this boat. 

Please post a photo of your ECM.

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1 hour ago, Gghost said:

The manual says it should read infinite.

What manual?  You keep telling us we are giving you links to the wrong manuals.

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Boz is correct in that pickup coil can go bad (#11 in his diagram), it did for me a year ago.  I had replaced all of the other main ignition components (plugs, wires, cap, rotor, coil, ICM) on my '02 Sunsetter when I had recurring ignition issues that left me stranded a few times over 3 years.  Finally I just lost all spark and that was the last component to try.  I have had no issues with ignition since.  It is a cheap part, easy to get at the local parts store.  Pulling and dismantling the distributor to replace it is a little more advanced mechanically but totally doable.  I took mine to a mechanic to re-time after getting it back together (was 100mi from home with just basic tools).  Might be worth a try if nothing else has worked to fix it.

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I am still questioning the coil too. I got a good, affordable one at Summit. Hate to just throw money at it, but with its age and you are in there, might as well.

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