94 Escort - 1.9L - Strange Problem - Please Help
This is my first post here & I would appreciate any help that anyone can give me. I'm a Honda/Acura tech by trade, so forgive me if I don't use the proper Ford terminology.
Working on a 1994 Escort with a 1.9L & an automatic transmission. Car was towed in with a cranks/no start complaint. Quick check out shows that I have fuel pressure, but no spark. I have no pulse to the coil from the ignitor. Further diagnosis showed that I was not getting a signal from the crank angle sensor to the ignitor to fire the coil. I verified that the wiring was intact & sold the customer a new crank sensor. And guess what, the car still wont start.
Same problem with the same symptoms & I look like an idiot.
So I take a deep breath & dive back in. I still suspect a crank sensor problem, so I look there first. I immediately notice that there is almost a ¼” gap between the crank sensor & the crank pulley. This looks odd to me, but I haven’t worked on many Fords, I commit this to memory & start to look elsewhere. Later, everything else looks okay, so I’m back to the crank sensor.
The sensor is not adjustable, so I can’t move it closer to the crank pulley. Then I remember that I have a friend that has an old escort, I call her & convince her to drop by. Hers is a 1995 with a 1.9L, so basically the same car. The sensor on the ’95 is right up against the pulley, just like I thought it should be. So I’m wondering what’s going on. The wrong crank pulley??? So I pull her pulley & they look the same. I take the old sensor & pulley, put them on her car & it starts right up. Her sensor & pulley wont start the old car & have the same ¼” space. I put her car back together, thank her many times & send her on her way. I tore off the timing belt & covers to look for any damage to the front of the motor. Everything looked fine, so I went home & wondered how I spent a whole day on a no spark complaint & didn’t fix the car.
After a mostly sleepless night, I decided that we needed to talk to the customer & see if they could shed any light on the problem. The customer revealed that the car was “somewhere else” & that “they” had replaced the cylinder head & timing belt. After they finished, the car wouldn’t start. The cylinder head is used & the timing belt is a cheap aftermarket belt. We had the customer call “them” & explain the situation, they were less than helpful.
So, I have a ’94 Escort with no spark & no pulse from the crank sensor. A new/used head & timing belt from “them” & a ¼” gap between the crank sensor & the pulley. The front of the engine, possibly the oil pump, looks to be 1 piece & is in good shape. It does not look broken, bent, stretched, or otherwise distorted. I don’t know what to do here & I am asking for your help. I feel I know what is wrong, but I have no idea how to fix it.
Thanks in advance - Darren