33 1.7 16V starting problem - Alfa Romeo Forum
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(Post Link) post #1 of 14 Old 05-08-16 Thread Starter
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Madness 33 1.7 16V starting problem

Hi guys

Im having lots of problems starting my 33 1.7 16V.
The car has been hibernating for a lot of years, because I broke the engine. After that I repaired the engine, but since then Im having problems to turn it on.
Some times I go to the garage and crank it and it starts, other times it doesnt start at all even if I try, and try, and try...

So now its the time to solve the problem so I can take it out for a drive...

What I have done/checked is:

- My car is NON-cat.
- Removed all gasoline (7 or 8 years old) and put 9 - 10 liters of 98 ron (yesterday)
- The fuel pump relay clicks and it has fuel on the injectors because when I crank I get the smell of gas.
- New rotor and new cap
- I have spark on the plugs (tested the HT leads with a plug)
- Fire order is correct, checked, rechecked... hundreds of times!
- Tested the engine temp sensor (the blue) for the injection and it gave 2500-2560 ohms at about 20-23 (normal summer portuguese weather)
- Tested the crack sensor and I got about 600 ohms
- Sometimes I try to start it and it seams to start but nothing
- Sometimes it doesnt give any sinal of live, (like it doesnt have gas or spark)
- If I could not start it, and I "invert" the HT leads 180, it gives a loud bang.
- Sometimes it starts (rarelly), and when it starts it idles very bad.
- Sometimes when it starts I have to use the acelerator keep it on, and on some of that times it doesnt go by 2000rpm even if I put my foot down. If I take my foot from the accelerator the engine stops. After that I cant start it again.
- Last night noticed the spark is very weak!

Used 2 different spark plug leads, one from a normal carburated 33 (I know they are not compatible) and another one from the 33 16V, and also tested both leads with 2 different plugs, one 25HLD and a NGK from some car. With the lead from the carb 33 I had a very big and normal spark, with the 33 16v lead I got a very small and weak spark and sometimes (some turns) no spark.

So I think the problem could be on this...

I Know that the 16V HT leads are different and have some resistence.

If I measure the resistence with a tester what are the value I should get?

I measured one original from Alfa and it gave me about 6.5 K, measured another from Lucas and it gave me near 11K.

Should the small HT lead that connects the coil to the distribuctor cap also has high resistence like the other 4 HT leads or this one should have low (or no) resistence? What value should I get if tested?

Any Ideas???

Thanks

Last edited by gralalfafan; 05-08-16 at 10:58.
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Hi,

The resistance of the HT leads (including the one between the rotor and the ignition coil) is
usually ranging from 2.2 to 6.5kOhms. Leads with graphite core can show even higher values (up to 12k).
Resistance helps to reduce the RF interference. Copper cored leads with only a few Ohms resistance
can be used as well, it won't cause too much trouble since the spark plugs are also equipped with internal
resistor.

Back to the hard / no start problem:
- you may have one or more stuck and/or clogged injector(s), and the engine may not getting enough fuel
- un-metered air enters into the engine intake, causing too lean mixture (cracked plastic or rubber hoses)
- the air-flow meter sends incorrect signal to the ECU (due to mechanical wear)

You can try to inject a small amount (approx 5 ccm) of fuel into the intake manifold (e.g. through the AFM)
to see does it make any difference. If it gets better, the problem is likely fuel supply related.
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(Post Link) post #3 of 14 Old 06-08-16 Thread Starter
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First of all thank you very much for you reply!

Quote:
The resistance of the HT leads (including the one between the rotor and the ignition coil) is
usually ranging from 2.2 to 6.5kOhms. Leads with graphite core can show even higher values (up to 12k).
Resistance helps to reduce the RF interference.
So I have 1 set original Alfa and 1 set from Lucas that are fine.


Quote:
- you may have one or more stuck and/or clogged injector(s), and the engine may not getting enough fuel
No...
Last night I move out the injector and as soon as someone chank the car I had gas on my fingers.


Quote:
- un-metered air enters into the engine intake, causing too lean mixture (cracked plastic or rubber hoses)
No... at least nothing serius.
The car and the hoses are old, but everything was checked, and on the past week it was checked a lot of times



Quote:
You can try to inject a small amount (approx 5 ccm) of fuel into the intake manifold (e.g. through the AFM) to see does it make any difference.
Done that, made no difference...


But Ive got good news!

Last night I put the car out of the garage and left it out, so it get some normal sun heat.
In the morning before I left home it didnt start... when I arrived at 12 the same thing.
After lunch at about 3.30 I went to the car with my son and we tryed to start it.
At first nothing...
But we tryed, and tryed with me turning the AFM screw (a lot) and at some point it started with the use of the accelerator!
we accelated it for 30s and released the accelerator and it cut.
After that it started always, and become better and better, and better.
Left if warming and the fan kicked some times at the right temp.

Now Im letting it cold, so later I can try to crank it again to check it is normal.

But now I have another "problem"...

The idle speed is at about 1200/1300 rpm...

I did a lot of turns on the AFM...
To what side should I turn to cut CO gases?

Thanks again

Last edited by gralalfafan; 06-08-16 at 20:37.
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Glad to hear that the engine is finally started !

If the engine runs better and better as it gets warmed up, that could be caused by inadequate cold enrichment.
That also explains hard starting.

Due the many unsuccessful start attempts the engine oil may diluted with unburned fuel.
As the oil getting hot enough, fuel fumes are released into the crankcase ventilation,
this may also contributes to the high idle.

Inoperative throttle bypass (a.k.a IAV) valve can also cause this.
Or incorrect angular setting of the closed throttle switch (or it's defective).

SomeOne may correct me, but as I recall the CO screw should be turned counter clockwise to reduce
injection pulse width. Adjust the screw at hot engine until normal idle speed is obtained.
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(Post Link) post #5 of 14 Old 08-08-16 Thread Starter
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After the first time it started, I never had any problem starting it again, now it alwais starts with 2 ou 3 turns of the engine.

It only as high idle...

Quote:
Inoperative throttle bypass (a.k.a IAV) valve can also cause this.
Its fine, tested it with 12v and also I have a spare and did the same.


Quote:
Or incorrect angular setting of the closed throttle switch (or it's defective).
No... its fine tested it with a tester, and only clics when touching de accelerator linkage.


Quote:
SomeOne may correct me, but as I recall the CO screw should be turned counter clockwise to reduce
injection pulse width.
Thanks... I was doing the oposite direction!!!
Later at the end of the day I you try it the right way, and I report back
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(Post Link) post #6 of 14 Old 08-08-16 Thread Starter
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Here is a video of my car taken las saturday.
Thats the way it is now.
Yesterdey I solved some other stuf like brakes that were seized...

https://youtu.be/kVh-mTsIkCU
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Sounds good.

So it's a post '92 model with air conditioner (does it still works?) and LPG set?
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(Post Link) post #8 of 14 Old 09-08-16 Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LoneWolf33 View Post
Sounds good.

So it's a post '92 model with air conditioner (does it still works?) and LPG set?
No...
Its an early 1991 model with air conditioner (lots of electrics compared with all other 33 that Ive seen) and no LPG, just normal gas.
Its the 137hp version.
As far as I know on the 16V that came to Portugal de AC was put on the car by the local importer at the time, like some extras. That was normal on the 80s and beggining of the 90s
The AC is from Alfa and has an identification on the heater box.

Last edited by gralalfafan; 09-08-16 at 17:48.
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(Post Link) post #9 of 14 Old 09-08-16 Thread Starter
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I could not tune the engine...

The car is working all the time with the cold start mecanism always on.

1 - I start the car cold and the rpm goes to about 1100-1200rpm.
2 - The battery light is on, so I must touch the gas pedal to rise the rpms a little and the light turns off.
3 - The RPM is 1100-1200, the car is cold.
4 - Time passes and now the temp is near 80 but the rpm are at the same 1100-1200rpm
5 - Some more time passes the temp is now a little bit over 90 and the fan kick and we have the same rpm.
6 - I remove the connector that controls the Idle speed, and the idle speed goes up and down, up and down, up and down...
7 - I connect the connector again and now the idle speed is 900rpm and sounding normal!!!
8 - After putting the connector back sometimes half a minute later (but it could be 45s or a minute) the rpm goes up to 1200 and down again in a moment.
9 - Again after putting the connector again on the valve sometimes half a minute later (but it could be 45s or a minute) the rpm goes up to 1200 and stays there.
When it goes back to 1100-1200rpm (sometime after removing the connector from the valve) if I remove the connector again the rpm goes down again and we here we go again to line number 6

The idle is fine tunned on the throttle bodys, I dont have air leaks, but there is something telling the ECU to accelerate the engine...

Last edited by gralalfafan; 09-08-16 at 21:02. Reason: .
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I think the mixture is too rich, and the ECU not able to compensate the idle speed via the idle actuator.
Even with minimum allowed pulse width on the actuator valve terminals gives higher idle speed than normal.
At hot engine try to adjust the CO screw on the AFM by 1/4 turns at the time, then wait 20-30 seconds to
see how the engine reacts. If the engine is still filled with the old oil, I'd recommend to change it.
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(Post Link) post #11 of 14 Old 11-08-16 Thread Starter
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Quote:
I think the mixture is too rich, and the ECU not able to compensate the idle speed via the idle actuator.
Dont think so...
I did a lot of turns to left (oposite the clock...) and no difference.


Quote:
At hot engine try to adjust the CO screw on the AFM by 1/4 turns at the time, then wait 20-30 seconds tosee how the engine reacts.
Did that, no difference.

When I remove the connector from the valve that controles the idle speed, after I put it back the idle is ok, but about half a minute later the idle jumps to 1200 and cames back to 900. Then about 5 seconds later it starts to rise the idle slowly to 1200...
Cant solve this...


Quote:
If the engine is still filled with the old oil, I'd recommend to change it.
New oil!
I repaired this engine so, new oil.

Last edited by gralalfafan; 11-08-16 at 20:25.
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Member car:

33

Hi, is it possible that bypass actuator valve and also the spare one you have tried
are still working (not completely inoperative) but are dirty or worn so no more precise?
Bob
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(Post Link) post #13 of 14 Old 12-08-16 Thread Starter
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Quote:
Hi, is it possible that bypass actuator valve and also the spare one you have tried
are still working (not completely inoperative) but are dirty or worn so no more precise?
No, they are fine and clean.
One was always on the car (original) the other is a spare that I had stored on my garage.

But I think I found the problem!!!
Yesterday evening I check everything again including air leaks blowing air with a compressor, and found nothing wrong.
At some point in the night I loosened the throotle potenciometer/switch and as soon as I moved the thing it started to beave different!!!
So I reset it in place and the engine started to beave correct, and didnt change the idle speed again.
Before moving the thing, it was fine tuned with the click soon after the thottle was moved. I have no doubt about that.
So today in the mornig I took the TP out and brought it to work to clean everything with contact cleaner and test it with a tester to check if the 2 possible positions are giving the correct signal.

Ill report here as soon as I put it back on the car.

Last edited by gralalfafan; 12-08-16 at 08:46.
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(Post Link) post #14 of 14 Old 24-08-16 Thread Starter
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Problem solved!

I did a tune from scratch.
Started from zero and did it almost like I do om my carb Sprints.
Now it is working fine with the idle between 850 and 900 rpm with little flutuation.
I think the main problem was the idle potenciometer/switch...
It was clicking right after the throtle moved, but I think it needed a little more space.
Now I like what I see and hear...
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