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1988 Pathfinder Running Poorly

 
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OldRed88



Joined: 14 Apr 2017
Posts: 3
Location: Olathe,ks

PostPosted: Fri Apr 14, 2017 11:42 pm    Post subject: 1988 Pathfinder Running Poorly Reply with quote

I wanted to first start out with this. I'm very happy to join this forum and to add in any input I can to help other members out. Im pretty darn good with a wrench but no expert.

My Name is CJ and I own a 1988 Nissan Pathfinder XE 4X4 which has a long backed story to it. I don't see many of these anymore around where I live. Long story short this truck was lost until I was able to do some digging and bought It back from the previous owner. My father purchased this in 88 new, and very happy to have a part of him.

I've owned it now for 4 years and never had any issues with it until now. Luckily I know all of the PM's have been done to it by the book. It all started with my started having a weak crank from the starter. This is where the fun began. I will list the events in order to help out the process.

1. Replaced failed started - Cranks over now with no problems. So i figured I would go ahead and replaced the distributor cap (knowing it was having a slight misfire on cold starts) two of the contacts looked corroded and burnt.

2. Replaced Cap and ignition rotor. This is what started my no start condition. At least until i phased the distributor cap as far clockwise as I possibly could and now it runs at idle.

3. It will currently run at idle but backfire though the intake when any sort of gas is applied. It was then I realized the timing belt hasn't been replaced since 96 (lol). Replaced timing belt as book specified. Cylinder 1 TDC with all alignment marks. Verified by counting teeth.

4. After replacing the belt it had no effect. Still starts and runs but cuts out and backfires through intake when gas is applied. I'm beggining to wonder if at some point in time there was a bent valve or push rod. BUT!!! the truck ran smooth before all of this started. I will try and up load a video for help.

Any Ideas are welcome at this point. I'm at a total loss.
Thank you
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volox



Joined: 29 Jan 2011
Posts: 29

PostPosted: Sun Apr 23, 2017 9:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Are you absolutely certain you got your spark plug wires in the right order? (had to ask)

Have you tried re-doing the distributor cap alignment to TDC? If the gear on the bottom of the rotor isn't aligned to the cam shaft it might be causing a timing problem.

I assume you've also checked that all your harnesses and vacuum hoses are plugged back in properly? I know there are several of them that have to come apart during the timing belt operation. A missing sensor connection might cause that kind of issue - unlikely, but maybe.
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OldRed88



Joined: 14 Apr 2017
Posts: 3
Location: Olathe,ks

PostPosted: Sun Apr 23, 2017 9:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you for the response. Yes on the spark plugs, i understand having to ask. I have not checked the position of the gear assuming cylinder 1 is at tdc i would place the ignition rotor facing spark 1? Ill give it a shot.
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volox



Joined: 29 Jan 2011
Posts: 29

PostPosted: Sun Apr 23, 2017 11:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Could also be that you ended up installing to fire on the exhaust stroke instead of the compression stroke. That might explain the backfire into the intake. Make sure your TDC is after compression by taking out the #1 plug and covering the hole with your finger. Exhaust stroke shouldn't push air while compression stroke should push on your finger.

My book says the rotor for the VG30 should be at about 11 o'clock if it's lined up for #1 plug.

I'll be interested to hear what you find.
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smj999smj
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Joined: 22 Jan 2012
Posts: 4170
Location: Prospect, VA

PostPosted: Sun Apr 23, 2017 11:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

If the distributor was never removed, it shouldn't be out of phase. Backfiring would indicate improper timing. There is no need to count teeth on the belt. When you got the new belt, there should have been an arrow on the belt, which points toward the front, a dashed or dotted line, which lines up with the right bank (passenger side) cam sprocket timing mark at 11:00. There should also be two, solid lines, which line up with the left bank cam sprocket timing mark at 1:00 and the crank sprocket timing mark at 5:00. With the belt installed as such, the engine is at TDC #1. The distributor adjustment should be just slightly off the middle of the adjustment slot and the rotor should be pointing towards the #1 tower of the distributor cap.
Keep in mind that you should have re-adjusted the distributor to achieve proper timing (checked with a timing light) after you installed the new belt. If you did all this and it still runs rough, you may want to check the spark plugs to make sure none of them are fouled and follow that with a compression test, which would help determine if bent valves exist.
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