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Old 11-23-2013, 02:06 PM   #1
Oddbob
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Coil Pack Question 2004 2.3L

Hey all,

I'm new here, and my name is Taylor. I'm not new to cars though, or Fords. I spent nine years at a Ford dealer before I left to go to grad school. Because I have spent so much time around Fords I feel slightly embarrassed to ask what I have to ask. (Also, sorry about the other post in the wrong forum!)

The issue:

I have a 2004 Focus ZTS that seems to be missing occasionally. I changed the spark plugs a while ago (maybe 20k miles ago) and the missing continued. The missing is not that huge of a problem. It never does it under hard acceleration, but only occasionally at half throttle and almost always while at idle (which is crazy annoying).

I am going back home over Thanksgiving break and I intend to stroll through a junk yard and find a good coil pack, but I need to know if the coil I pick will be good. Google has not helped me much here and so I want to know a few things - what are the signs that a coil pack is good? I would test the four on my engine but I don't know which one is bad, and I don't have a voltmeter to check ohms, etc.

Thoughts? Tips? I apologize for the wall of text, but details are usually good in these situations.

I appreciate it!

Taylor


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Old 11-23-2013, 02:27 PM   #2
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Sounds like you have the duratec, with the 4 "Coil On Plug" coils to deal with, just like my '04 ZTS. The "zetec" engine was the one with the "coil pack" (one unit of two coils, wires to the plugs) that is often mentioned along with it's connector for ignition issues.

I haven't had to deal with mine yet, but a number of members have noted being able to buy new "boots" - the rubber tube & connector from the coil to the plug - and that replacing them solves many issues without the expense of new coils.

On the twin coil "pack", seeing cracking in the poured in plastic visible at the base was the sign of a bad one (cracks let moisture in), often more definitive than static electrical testing. On the individual coils, that poured in plastic is visible right at the top - so any damage there would be a BAD sign!

Hope that helps...

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Old 11-23-2013, 03:09 PM   #3
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I second just buying the new boots that come with the "spring" . The spring slides over the brass connector in the actual coil, and the other end sits on top of the spark plug. What I did, and have done on a Superduty, Excursion and my car is to cut a fingernail file in half and file the brass connector in the coil, then replace the old spring and boot with the new boots. It only costs about $30 to do this to all four coils. It is a lot cheaper than all new coils, of which out of all the Fords I have ever owned, I have had to replace only one.
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Old 11-23-2013, 06:14 PM   #4
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You may be chasing ghosts, the missing can be many other things besides spark and you describe pretty well what happens on Duratec fours when the PCV hose inside the intake loop goes bad.
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Old 11-23-2013, 10:11 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Oddbob View Post

I am going back home over Thanksgiving break and I intend to stroll through a junk yard and find a good coil pack, but I need to know if the coil I pick will be good.
If you pick one that is bad, they should be willing to replace it. If the problem gets worse with the new one, the new one is bad. If the problem goes away with the new one, you replaced the bad one on the first try. If the symptoms don't change, the new coil and the removed coil are probably both good, so replace a remaining coil with the removed coil. Repeat as necessary.
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Old 11-24-2013, 12:44 AM   #6
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If misfiring longterm you should be able to pull info from PCM as to which one is doing it. Or look at O2 output to verify the broken hose.

And buy a voltmeter, paid for with this one problem. Going repeat times to a scrapyard is a poor second compared to testing the parts directly.
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Old 11-24-2013, 10:03 PM   #7
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Quote:
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And buy a voltmeter, paid for with this one problem. Going repeat times to a scrapyard is a poor second compared to testing the parts directly.
What's the measurement for a good coil?

Last edited by jebiruph; 11-26-2013 at 09:22 PM.
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Old 11-24-2013, 11:19 PM   #8
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I have no idea with COP coils, my stuff is zetec and different numbers since coilpack. COP stuff has 4 of them though, a quick check would compare all against each other since almost impossible to have all 4 go bad at once. The one with varying numbers would be your bad boy.

Someone here should have some numbers somewhere.............
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Old 11-26-2013, 02:07 AM   #9
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Yes its the 2.3L with the 4 independent coils. I hadn't thought of the PCV system or even pulling codes (there's no wrench light or check engine light to suggest there would be any).

Thanks for the information!
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Old 11-26-2013, 05:27 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Oddbob View Post
Yes its the 2.3L with the 4 independent coils. I hadn't thought of the PCV system or even pulling codes (there's no wrench light or check engine light to suggest there would be any).

Thanks for the information!
Yeah, that's what I have too. I started noticing a miss around 85k miles or so. I'm having another one now at 160k. I replaced the boots, and that fixed it. Boots are easy to remove- I spin them around the coil, the fold the end back towards the coil, and that seems to make it easier than simply pulling off. I suggest using grease on the coil pin to prevent corrosion. Boots cost $5-12 each, so be prepared for sticker shock. Back when I did mine there was a generic American made part on RockAuto.com that cost me $4.50 each + shipping - discount. I'm sorry I can't remember the name, I was pleasantly surprised to get a made in the USA part at the lowest price.
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