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distributors

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Symptoms of a Bad or Failing Distributor Rotor and Cap
Common signs include engine misfires, car not starting, the Check Engine Light coming on, and excessive or unusual engine noises.
Symptoms of Bad or Failing Points & Condenser
If your vehicle runs rough, the engine will not fire, or the vehicle will not start at all, the points and condenser system may be failing.
How Long Does a Distributor Rotor and Cap Last?
The distributor rotor and cap pass voltage from ignition coils into the engine’s cylinders. From here, the air/fuel mixture is ignited and powers the engine. The coil connects to the...
How to Buy a Good Quality Distributor Rotor and Cap
When your distributor cap or rotor goes bad you could be left stranded and unable to start your vehicle. The rotor is a whirling dervish of power distribution, transferring energy from the ignition...
Symptoms of a Bad or Failing Distributor O Ring
If your car has a distributor, common signs the o-ring must be replaced include oil leaks and engine performance issues.
How Long Does a Distributor O Ring Last?
The distributor is part of the ignition system in your vehicle and its purpose is to route high voltage from the ignition coil to the spark plug. The spark plug then...
What Causes a Car to Backfire?
You’ve got an image of it in your head right now. An old car drives off jerkily from a stop sign, tires screeching as it lurches and bucks, with shotgun bangs coming from the...
How to Buy a Good Quality Rotor
The rotor exists to send power from your ignition coil over to your spark plugs – which make sure that your plugs ignite to start the fuel combustion process. Each time it goes...
How a Car Ignition System Works
The complicated process of a vehicle's ignition system requires precise timing on the part of the various systems involved. Starting a vehicle involves much more than just turning a key in the ignition...
How Does a Distributor Work?
In older cars, a distributor is one of the central parts of the ignition system. Since the early 1990's, many automakers have moved to using ignition systems without distributors. Though the number of cars with...
How to Remove, Install, and Adjust Ignition Timing
Ignition distributors help spark the gas and air in the engine. Worn distributors need to be removed to be cleaned to maintain proper ignition timing.
How to Replace an Electronic Ignition Pickup
The electronic ignition pickup is part of the ignition distributor. Signs of failure include intermittent misfiring or failure all at once.
How to Replace a Distributor O-Ring
Distributor O-rings seal the distributor shaft to the intake manifold. O-rings prevent engine misfires, loss of power, and oil leaks.
How to Replace a Distributor Rotor and Cap
Distributor caps and rotors keep the distributor clean and separate from the engine. Distributor caps may need to be replaced if the car won't start.

Related questions

Question
My 1990 Toyota pick up 4WD will not run
Hi there. You've got some work cut out for you. It sounds like either the timing chain could be out of time or the distributor is not timed correctly. First, set cylinder 1 to top dead center and remove...
Question
Having trouble diagnosing a stalling issue, do I need a new fuel pump?
If the engine is not getting fuel then it may need a fuel pump. I would start by checking to see if the engine is losing spark or fuel when this occurs. Knowing if the problem is spark or fuel...
Question
If I change spark plugs and wires do I change the rotor and distributor cap also?
It is recommended to replace distributor cap and rotor at the same time you are having the spark plugs and spark plug wires replaced. The cap and rotor contacts will wear down just like the spark plug electrodes wear down...
Question
Won't start - 1993 Toyota Corolla
Hi there. From the description you have given, no power to the ignition circuit and fuel pump circuit. It could be the EFI main relay is faulty. A circuit test could confirm the fault. A worn clutch would not keep...
Question
Car won't start. Could a sensor be at fault?
With the limited information available, I can only assume that no testing has been done at this point in time. You will want to start by running a scan for codes. This will tell you of any electrical issues the...
Question
Does a 1994 Cadillac Deville have a crankshaft sensor or do I need to replace the whole distributor?
Hi there. The ignition system for the 4.9L in your vehicle, should be HEI (high energy ignition) and does not have a CKP (crankshaft position sensor). The pick-up coil is inside the distributor and most likely is not the cause...
Question
Pickup coil shield missing on new distributor.
There is more than one manufacturer of distributors or its internal components and will operate the same way but have some small different changes that do not affect the performance of the part. You should not have any problems without...
Question
Won't start - 1996 Nissan Pathfinder
Yes, a possibility is the timing belt has failed. However, it is also possible (and greatly preferred) that the gear driving the distributor has sheared off. Your engine is "probably" in that class of engines known as "interference engines" which...
Question
engine wont restart when hot, no spark P0340 has 12v on both connectors, freq from 5-11hz when cranking
Since the crank position sensor gets its timing signal off the damper, I would first replace the damper to be sure timing was correct. The fact that this failure occurs after a "heat soak" cycle, and the P0340 code is...
Question
My truck cranks but it won't start - 1994 Chevrolet C2500
Hi. A couple of things to check: When the engine is at top dead center, does the rotor under the distributor cap point to the number 1 cylinder? It is very important that the engine is at top dead center...
Question
The engine misfires at 2000 RPM if I accelerate too fast
Seems like the camshaft is making the ignition retard too much. Your system should read at -11 to -12 for retard timing. It is possible that your vehicle is probably reading around -13 to -14, which will cause the engine...
Question
1968 Ford Mustang has an intermittent surge at idle
There are only two things that can cause this problem in this engine. One is the distributor timing jumping up and down due to worn out components inside the distributor. The other problem may be that the carburetor is not...
Question
Car suddenly not starting - 1997 Honda Civic
Hi there. It sounds like a failed starter or battery. Have a battery test performed with a digital battery tester that provides the cold cranking amps and state of health. Check all fuses/relays and replace as necessary. Perform a voltage...
Question
How do I get my car running
Hey there. There are a couple different ways to route the wires on these vehicles. Some distributors have the #2 and #4 plug wires in an alternate spot. If the new spark plugs are wet after trying to start the...
Question
My car shut off while I was driving and won't start back up
Hey there. The diagnosis of replacing the distributor is most likely the cause since the fuel pump would be the other cause. The distributor on this car has the crankshaft and camshaft sensors along with the ignition coil. This would...
Question
Car will stall out at random while driving?
Hey there. While it has been some time since I worked on one of these early CCC vehicles, the first place I would look is the carburetor itself. If the vehicle idles fine but stalls or hesitates when hitting...
Question
Engine bogs down
Hello there. Many common faults will cause your 1970 Chevrolet 350 engine to bog down. The most common faults are engine running to rich, improperly adjusted throttle linkage, fuel pressure to high, or a vacuum leak. A qualified technician, such...
Question
I get fire to my distributor coil. But I do not fire any of my plugs. My distributor won't turn.
As you may know, the distributor has a small gear on the bottom end of it that turns with the flywheel as the motor turns over. If the motor turns over and the distributor does not turn, this would suggest...
Question
Car overheating, new water pump, new radiator, head gasket is good. Why is it overheating?
This can be caused by a number of things such as low coolant levels, a faulty thermostat, or a failing coolant fan switch. As you may know the coolant fan switch helps to maintain the proper coolant temperature by turning...
Question
car cranks but wont start
The most common cause of the engine crank no start is loss of ignition spark from the ignition system. The distributor is known to have internal shaft oil leaks that will short out the internal cam and crankshaft sensors and...

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