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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I recently bought a 98 Concorde LXI from a friend. He mainly used the car for about 3 miles a day back and forth to work. Hardly ever ran the AC, never revved up the engine because it's all side streets between his house and work. So, having ridden in the car before when the opportunity came up I bought it from him to replace an old Hyundai I was commuting in. My commute is 100 miles a day. I knew when I bought it that the following things would have to be done: Left inner tie rod, brake pads and rotors. He told me the cruise didn't work. He said you could press the button, the light would come on and set the speed but if you pressed the brakes for any reason it would not work again until you turned the car off. Before taking it home I had the tie rod replaced.

The car ran great the day I picked it up. For a few hours. On the way home I was stopped at a 4 way intersection. When it was my turn I began to accelerate through the intersection. At this point is when the car slugged to a crawl, a/c stopped blowing cold, check engine light came on and I had to limp the car through to the shoulder at about 300 rpm. After stopping, turning everything off for a few minutes, it cranked up again just fine, without hesitation, albeit with the engine light on. I proceeded to go home and even used the cruise on the way, which worked without incident, even if I pressed the pedal.

After getting home the real fun started. My wife took the car shopping and when she came back she said it took a real long time to start. When I was in the car the next morning the same thing happened. It would turn over but only after 10-15 seconds of feathering the pedal would it finally catch and start up. On the way to work it started having misfires and stumbling. The engine wouldn't go past 3000 rpms.

My boss at work let me borrow his code reader and it came back with a camshaft position sensor error. I bought one and replaced it that night (while still suffering from misfires all day, mostly during acceleration from a dead stop). The starting issue went away as did the check engine light. Next morning I come out, take off and 100 ft down the road it stumbles and misfires then the engine light comes back on and i've got the same code now with cylinder misfire codes and an ignition system misfire code.

While this is happening and I'm trying to decide what to do the next day the a/c starts acting up. It will not turn off. Pressing the off button only makes the air start coming from the defrost vents instead of the front and it feels like regular air coming through. Press Auto and it regulates itself. If I turn the fan speed knob it will kick to manual but not change the speed at all.

So last night I changed the spark plugs (the old ones were just old but not fouled or otherwise in bad shape). No change. I also changed the oil and the air filter.

So I'm stumped right now. I'm not getting cylinder misfire codes anymore. Just the ignition system misfire code. I haven't changed the crankshaft position sensor so I guess that's next? It won't rev past 3K rpms in either park or on the road. It misfires and stumbles whether i'm in park or on the road putting a load on it. It's just crazy to me that it ran fine for years for him but as soon as I actually put it on the road something like this starts happening. I'm wondering if something else might be the culprit. PCM? Any ideas or info would be greatly appreciated. Thanks. Sorry for the long post.
 

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Wow... Any other indicators of any sort? Where is the temp guage (besides on the dash, silly!)? Do you smell odd exhaust? You probably would have mentioned anything odd under the hood since you say you changed the spark plugs, but what about anything possibly unplugged? I don't know (sorry!) if you have coil on plug ignition or not, but what about burned plug wires?

I doubt cam sensor, but that's an idea...

BUT, probably the best thing to do is bring it to a shop that can put it on a 'scope' or plug into the OBDII and take some readings while it is stumbling...

Please report back what you find out...
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Wow... Any other indicators of any sort? Where is the temp guage (besides on the dash, silly!)? Do you smell odd exhaust? You probably would have mentioned anything odd under the hood since you say you changed the spark plugs, but what about anything possibly unplugged? I don't know (sorry!) if you have coil on plug ignition or not, but what about burned plug wires?

I doubt cam sensor, but that's an idea...

BUT, probably the best thing to do is bring it to a shop that can put it on a 'scope' or plug into the OBDII and take some readings while it is stumbling...

Please report back what you find out...
sorry about that. It's a 3.2 with the coils on the plug. I don't really smell anything else. When it starts stumbling the a/c will stop producing cold air. The temp gauge never gets too high. I had a shop do the left inner tie rod end but they test drove it and report that it ran fine for them. It's just extremely odd that all this starts happening at once. The cam sensor has been replaced so that shouldn't be it ( I never say can't anymore). I've doused all the electrical connections under the hood with QD Electronic cleaner.

The only thing that's happened to it otherwise is his wife was driving it once and bottomed out the front end coming out of a parking lot. That was almost a year ago though. I saw the scrapes when I was changing the oil but nothing seems out of place or missing. The only code reader I have does just that, read codes.
 

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Having it scoped while it is fouling is probably the BEST thing to do to it, but it is interesting you mention that the AC stops blowing cold... That means that the PCM is shutting down the AC, or the belt is slipping BAD. Or that the AC is locking up...

I really DOUBT that this is it, but you could go run it, and after the AC has stopped being cold for a few seconds, shut it down run out (not into traffic!) and open the hood, and CAREFULLY touch the front of the AC clutch... see if it is HOT due to locking up... What I wonder is that if the AC compressor is locking up, and the belt is NOT slipping, it would run really rough as it worked against the locked up AC compressor. HOWEVER, this would be kinda unlikely because the AC wouldn't probably 'unlock' and let you run normally WITH COLD AC if it locked up and stopped the car from running well once...

More likely that the PCM shut you down...

Really, with out a scope or someone else chiming in that they've had it happen to them too, I don't know that there is much I can offer to you beyond this...

You've checked all that I would be able to check with out sitting there and scratching my head with it...

Fuel Filter?

You might do a fuel system pressure check on it... Hook up a fuel pressure gauge to the pressure test port (sorry, don't know where it is located) and see what your pressure readings are during or just after an 'episode'... (if it is just after, don't turn the key back on after shutting it down, just turn the key off with it stumbling and check pressure).
 

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Are there periods of time where it still runs OK, or does it now always run bad. How many miles on it? Has the timing belt ever been changed?
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Are there periods of time where it still runs OK, or does it now always run bad. How many miles on it? Has the timing belt ever been changed?
Sure. It can run almost the entire trip every day without problems. It's mostly when it's first started up, when I try to put a load on it (accelerate and merge into traffic), or anytime it hits 3K rpm. It does not go past 3K rpm at all. Almost like the governer is screwed up or something. When it does bog down I can floor it once or twice (which produces no response at first) and it will catch on the third time or so and "wake up" so to speak.

It's got 113K on it and the timing belt has never been changed. There are codes to let you know if the belt is slipping and I'm not getting any of those. The other belts have been changed though.
 

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OK. I don't think your timing belt has slipped - if it had, it would be acting up all the time - that's why I asked the question. But, separate from your current problem, you do realize the importance of getting your timing belt replaced ASAP, right? It was supposed to be done at 105k, and if it slips bad enough or breaks, you could be buying yourself a new engine (has happened to many people).
 

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Had the same thing with my 300. It got to the point where it would not start. I had my regular mechanic tow it to his shop. He trouble shot it and didn't find anything wrong other than the code for a misfire. He said that the fuel pressure was fine but he still thought it was the fuel pump, I thought so to. He changed the pump and the problem never returned.
BTW P1390 is the code for timing belt skipped one or more teeth.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Hey guys, I was wondering what you thought of this. Since the car won't go past 3K rpms in either Park or driving down the highway, could the catalytic converter have failed and the codes are a result of the back flow being prevented and misfires being a result as well? If so, I had looked up converters online and it appears the car has two? 3-1 on both sides?
 

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no more than 3K sitting still, or driving, both?

The test for clogged cats I'd expect would be to remove them and see how it runs... but I don't think you can remove them from the system with out running the manifolds wide open... LOUD and possibly dangerous... I wouldn't suggest it just so I'm not responcible for suggesting something that will break it worse than it is... Maybe pull a set from a junkyard and just swap the exhaust from the manifolds down to the junk yard set?

But I wouldn't really advocate even going to that trouble till someone else has an idea or can validate the probablilty of it being clogged cats...

I will say that I had a 2.5 in a Pontiac Fiero... fun little car, but the motor locked up on it while Mom was driving it to work... Swapped it for a junk yard motor (hell of a change with out a lift, let me tell ya), and the new motor ran really bad and had ZERO top end power... the timing had skipped one tooth I'm sure at one point... the timeing was WAY retarded... but, it was OBD1, and didn't toss a code for a slipped timing gear or belt/chain... So, Maybe you have a slippage problem and don't know it? It's only slipped ONE cog, enough that it runs fine till you hit the 3K mark?

As it was stated above, CHANGE THE BELT before it's too late... you never know, you may find that it fixes itself in chainging it...
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Just wanted to update the thread and say that I took it to a shop today. They had it all day and at 4:00 called me to say they couldn't figure it out either. What he did say was that my battery was down to about 220 CCA and that "Chrysler really likes their batteries fully charged for all that electronic stuff to work right". Not so sure about that assumption. I can't argue the test as it was computerized. They basically charged me to put it on the computer (which I got the same codes from with my handheld). I did notice when it was on the lift that the muffler right at the back had 3 rusted holes in it. Other than that I can't think of anything else. They said if I brought it back they'd figure it out, eventually, but that the bill would probably run up to $200 or so because they'd have to spend all day tracking down what he thinks is either a wire grounding out somewhere or the computer is on the fritz.

Anyone got a spare computer? :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Another update. Took it to a muffler shop and the Cat's are fine. No codes for them anyways.

Brought it by another mechanic that my friend introduced me to and he put it on his big code reader and came up with some more codes that mine wasn't showing. After a DTC clear and then revving it up till stall we get these codes:

P1389
P0320
P1391
P0340

The last two were the ones I was reading. The first two talk about the ASD relay signal not present at the PCM. Which means it's shutting down the injectors and cam/crank sensors, etc. Not sure why it takes until the engine warms up but it may very well end up being that the PCM has some bad grounding internally? Who knows. I'm pulling the PCM tonight and cleaning the terminals on all the connectors with some QD Electronic spray.
 

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Crank and cam sensors maybe?

we hadn't looked at that yet... not totally sound on that suggestion rigth now, but it comes to mind quick.... I'll re-read the thread in a bit and give you a better feeling on the suggestion... for now, just throwing it out there....
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
I already replaced the cam sensor and the shop replaced the crank for testing which did not alter the results. I think I'll get out there during lunch tomorrow and tear into it a little bit and reseat all the connectors for the PCM. I really feel like at this point there's just a loose wire somewhere.
 
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