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Repairs/upgrades on the '89 Black/Gray


DAVES89

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I have pretty much looked over the black/gray and here is what I see.

1]I need a rack & pinnion [i am hiring that out].

2]A/C needs a recharge.

What I have done.

1]Replaced headliner. [Made sure all [make up,rearview mirror, overhead] lights operational].

2] Got the radio working. Previous owner took out aftermarket amp and disconnected all the wires. Front speakers blown and will get replaced when I have another reason to go in the doors.

3] Did the coil pack upgrade,seafoam thru the plenum and cleaned the IAC.

I have questions on two issues.

1] Car starts and idles well, But acceleration from a dead stop is very hesitant. Once it is going it will accelerate well and drops down in gears on hard acceleration OK.

I am leaning towards MAF sensor and transmission modulator. Any ideas?

2] Everything works on the dash , but the hard buttons do not illuminate. Not critical, but want everything to work.

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Dave, I'm willing to help if I can. Please explain the hesitant acceleration in detail. Is it jumping or jerking when accelerating of is it just slow?

A few things to check:

Does the throttle open all the way?

Are you certain it is starting out in first gear instead of second?

Have you checked compression on the engine?

Are you certain all cylinders are firing?

Does it accelerate better when the engine is cold or hot?

Modulator will only control how hard the transmission shifts. I doubt it will affect acceleration. MAF might.

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Ronnie,

Acceleration is just slow.

Throttle linkage is smooth.

Car does start out in 1st.

I have not checked compression. [something to consider]

I have not done a "spark test" as yet.[i have a spark tester and will try this next].

It accelerates better warm then cold. Also if I sit at a light it seems sluggish when accelerating.

I have thought that the trans modulater helps with the passing gear dropdowns as well as the hardness of shifting as the car goes thru the gears.

I probably need to drive the car more to get a better feel for what is going on. [i still havn't put 75 miles on it yet...

It looks like the previous owner put a new oxygen sensor in it. I will try also the MAF sensor as I have an extra one laying around.

The car really does start and idle great, I just want to address the acceleration issue...

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<span style="font-weight: bold">Daves89 wrote:</span>

Ronnie,

Acceleration is just slow.

Throttle linkage is smooth.

Car does start out in 1st.

I have not checked compression. [something to consider]

<span style="color: #3333FF">A compression test will give a good indication of the overall condition of the engine and its ability to accelerate properly.</span>

I have not done a "spark test" as yet.[i have a spark tester and will try this next].

<span style="color: #3333FF">A good test to determine if all cylinders are running is to have a helper sit in the car with it in gear and hold the brake while at the same time pressing down on the gas pedal to put the engine under load. While the helper is doing that remove a spark plug wire from the coil and observe how much it changes the sound of the engine and the way it runs. Remove and replace each wire one at a time. If removing one of the wires does not change the sound of the engine then you will know that cylinder is not firing and needs to be investigated to find out why.</span><span style="color: #FF0000"> Safety first while doing this. You could get ran over if your helper fails to hold the brake tightly.</span>

It accelerates better warm then cold. Also if I sit at a light it seems sluggish when accelerating.

<span style="color: #3333FF">I would check the diagnostics screen to make sure the engine is going into closed loop and see if any codes are being set.</span>

I have thought that the trans modulater helps with the passing gear dropdowns as well as the hardness of shifting as the car goes thru the gears.

<span style="color: #3333FF">The modulator will contol how hard the transmission shifts. Passing gear dropdowns and upshifts are controlled by the TV cable and the governor inside the transmission. If you are haveing problems with the transmission shifting too soon or not down shifting soon enough check the adjustment on the TV cable. The governor sticking can also cause improper shift points but that is not likely.</span>

I probably need to drive the car more to get a better feel for what is going on. [i still havn't put 75 miles on it yet...

It looks like the previous owner put a new oxygen sensor in it. I will try also the MAF sensor as I have an extra one laying around.

I<span style="color: #3333FF"> would definately try the MAF sensor.</span>

The car really does start and idle great, I just want to address the acceleration issue...

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You really need to start using the diagnostics screen, it will tell a lot.

If the engine is smooth (a missing cyl or two will seem to stutter) but just slow off the line (mine will bark the tires if immoderate) then it is possible the knock sensor is working overtime and retarding the spark (OLD PA3). If the coolant sensor is not working properly, it could be running way over rich.

When it is working that way, a "snapshot" of all engine parameters can really tell a lot and without one it is hard to tell what is wrong.

Just for one check, is the inside of the tailpipe black or gray ?

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Just got done replacing the Mass Airflow Sensor. Acceleration is back. Car runs great.

Also replaced the aftermarket "stick" attenna with a factory unit picked up from a "U-Pick" yard.

Regarding my A/C unit I have decided to have the unit "evacuated". They will then put in the correct oil and the leak check dye. I have the freon [this car has r-134]and will put that in. The service charge is $75.00. I think that is fair.

Last is the rack and pinion and then an alignment. I will then park the red/tan and drive this one for the balance of the summer.

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Glad to hear the repairs are going well. Not wanting to be a no-it-all, but would it not make sense to let the A/C tech put in the cans of freon while they have the gauges hooked up? Less chance of loosing the vacuum that way. However I understand your thinking if they would charge you a lot more for installing the freon.

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The camera has a dead battery. I will post them soon.

One of the unforseen benefits of the black/gray is that it had an ultra clear tail light. I say had because it is now on the red/tan as I swapped them.

However a new problem has popped up. I wanted to program both Reattas to the same 2 remotes. The FSM says this is possible. I tried several times, even running a lead to the negative side of the battery to ensure a good ground. I just could not get the lead to trip starting the remote setup program.

It seems the previous owner accidently shorted out the security system while changing the alternator w/o disconnecting the battery. Fortunatly there is a remote that must have been setup prior to the alternator incident. I am going to research this when I have time.

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Guest Bugler

That would annoy me. What if you go out and unlock your car and forget it opens both. Then you drive off leaving the other one unlocked. Then it gets stolen. frown.gif

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I don't believe either car will ever be within 10-20 feet of each other with a need to lock the doors. The red/tan is in the garage and the black/gray is parked in our neighbors driveway [they are selling the house and moved elsewhere].

I only lock my cars when they are off my property or is the outside overnight car. [3 cars 2 car garage]

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Sorry Manik but you are on the wrong side of Duluth,Mn. to Appleton, Wi. But I will bring it down for you to see. Just need to set up a day when I am in the area.

I will call you when that should happen...

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Guest THEHKP7M13

<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Originally Posted By: manikmekanik</div><div class="ubbcode-body">...and just got a TECH-I scantool. We can now diagnose ANY Reatta quirk...</div></div>

Thats a nice piece and heck yes you can! Did you get all the cartridges for it?

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The red/tan mass air flow sensor acted up Tuesday. I had already put my back up on the black/gray. Had to go out to the u-pick yard to get another. It had rained some yesterday and the yard was extremly muddy. Searched the yard over for a '88-90 3800 motor. All had been picked clean. As I was walking out I looked into the "pending" area and saw an '88 LeSabre. It was marked "motor bad" but I took it anyhow. Guy at the counter asked what I had, told him MAF sensor from a bad motor. He said "No charge have a good day" Put it in at the yard, cleared code b034h, stayed clear, I am back in business!

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