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Old 10-17-2017, 09:38 PM   #1
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03 Zetec dies at idle.....

03 ZTS Zetec, A/T, 184k miles.

Replaced timing belt Sunday. Monday drove to work, 40 miles, no problems.

Ater work, drove ten miles, stopped, went to start the car and engine hesitated, finally started up.

From there on, it died every time I stopped.

No codes. Everything is plugged in. Sprayed starter fluid around all hoses with engine running, no affect.

Car starts and runs fine when the engine isn't running at full operating temp.

I'm stumped.


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Old 10-17-2017, 10:02 PM   #2
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Moved to "General Technical Chat".
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Old 10-18-2017, 12:33 AM   #3
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If the car ran fine before the timing belt change, recheck your work. You used the correct Zetec timing pin and cam bar, right? Might be the timing belt tensioner has slackened off.
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Old 10-18-2017, 06:03 AM   #4
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Used the pin and bar. Marked the crank pulley and verified via dowel that #1 was TDC.

Wife drove it yesterday to/from work, one mile each way. Starts and runs fine.

Tensioner could have slipped, but at cool ambient temperature and low engine temp, it runs fine. I'm not ruling out timing mind you, and I'm going to recheck it this weekend just to eliminate that from the mix.

When it started stalling the engine was at full operating temp and the ambient temp was low 70's.

My hunch is temperature is a variable. I drove over fifty miles without so much as a hiccup. And now, with low ambient temp and the engine not getting fully warmed up, it runs fine.

And no codes.
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Old 10-18-2017, 11:39 AM   #5
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I dont like starter fluid to find Vac leaks , A good way to check for leaks is a cheap cigar ( not cigarette ) , I draw in but dont in hail then blow into a known good Vac line into the intake 5-6 times at a good pace , do this in a very shaded area with a light works best and you will even see the throttle shaft leaking some if done properly

Do you have or know of a Ford SCT XCAL3 or 4 Flasher you can use ?

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Old 10-18-2017, 01:47 PM   #6
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Got a cigar at the ready. Good excuse to light it up.

Do not have access to either Ford SCT XCAL3 or 4 Flasher.
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Old 10-18-2017, 02:37 PM   #7
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DON'T get the starter fluid near it! And NEVER use that stuff to check for external vac leaks, I personally know someone with half his face missing due to that.

Starter fluid is useful as hell but it always needs to be in a confined space in case too much is used and it explosively lights off. I also know someone who blew up an engine using it to break 6 out of 8 connecting rods. Several holes in the block...........explain THAT to the customer coming in at 2:00 to pick up the car. BTDT.

The two second rule............if the engine does not burn a two second shot of it then it has something wrong with it, a 2nd two second shot without the first igniting and you are asking for unannounced and unforeseen consequences.

OP, at 184K miles the car could simply have popped out another problem, common at that kind of age. If the problem for sure showed up after the work done then like said suspect the work.................
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Old 10-18-2017, 03:51 PM   #8
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Yeah, the starter fluid made me pretty nervous. Used it sparingly on a cold engine.

Regardless, I suspect something got catty wampus during the timing belt task.

I'm going to replace the PCV tube and valve as it seems it is something that will need it sooner than later.

It seem to me, a layman, that it should have thrown a code. But perhaps this is one of those matters where you need to monitor the pertinent systems in real time to see what is not performing within parameters.
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Old 10-18-2017, 04:27 PM   #9
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There's no cam sensor for the exhaust cam... That's a possibility.
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Old 10-18-2017, 05:06 PM   #10
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There's no cam sensor for the exhaust cam... That's a possibility.
Meaning there is a exhaust cam sensor but it is not working?
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