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89 Ford Escort No Spark

07-23-2007, 03:44 PM
First timer here. My 89 Escort (36,ooo) original, was running rough decided to use STP. Seemed to help 3 days later car lost power smelled raw gas quit running altogether. It will crank over no start. Changed fuel filter initally not getting gas out of top filter (removed line) to verify. Checked for spark plug against manifold way then plug wire with nail to ground still nothing. Removed timing belt cover partially, just enough to watch while trying to crank, the belt does not move. Is it suppose too? Thanx for any and all help in advance.

07-23-2007, 07:59 PM
The timing belt should move. Take the cover all the way off and have a look... sounds like you need to replace it.

07-25-2007, 04:21 PM
Thanx for the reply mighty moose. How outrageous would it be to remove fender and fenderwell, first? I'm a trynasaurus like armed,on the street type mechanic, I need space! I signed up online for Mitchell's to help. It seems to take for granted that they are working on a engine bench mounted. Any ideas where I could see how the body parts are attached? thanx for help anyone. enjoy reading other posts. Strongback in Pittsburgh

07-25-2007, 08:12 PM
I think it would be pretty outrageous... wouldn't suggest you go through all of that.

Easy way to check the timing belt is to look through the hole for the oil cap while the engine is cranking. Look for moving parts... if they aren't moving, then your timing belt is broken.

To change the timing belt you will have to remove that plastic cover that is over it, and that will require bracing the engine, either with a lift or with a block of wood under the oil pan, and removing the engine mount next to the cover. With the engine mount removed all of the other parts should become easy to access. Maybe not so in your case, but I'd think once the alternator and belts and whatnot are removed that even large arms can access that timing belt.

Pick up a Haynes manual at the local auto shop for maybe $20. It is detailed enough to get you through the process and has some decent pictures.

Hmm... all that said and I realize your car is an 89... I am not sure if it has the same plastic cover as my 94 or not... regardless, changing the timing belt on these engines is not difficult... just time consuming. If you have patience and a decent tool supply you should be able to get it done yourself.

You can always get people here to guide you through any tough spots.

07-30-2007, 02:29 PM
Well Mighty Moose I can't say it is a success. Timing belt shot. The removal of the old timing belt was a pain in the arse. Between drilling out a access hole to remove the crankshaft pulley nut and the hard time to access the left pulley tensor bolt, removing starter jaming screwdirver to prevent flywheel from moving,you where right it was timing consuming to say the least. And I'm still not out of the woods yet, even though the utmost care was to keep everything in line. (did not manually turn over to check).The timing is off. timing mark on crankshaft pulley sitting between 9 and 10 o'clock. Oh it runs (hopefully enough) to get me to work. I guess i pull it off again this weekend. Thanx again Strongback in Pittsburgh

07-30-2007, 03:27 PM
After you have installed your timing belt, and before putting everything back together, you can turn the engine several revolutions with a socket on the crankshaft (spark plugs removed). After a few good turns you can check to be sure timing is still lined up and the belt is tight. After that, then put it all back together.

08-06-2007, 03:41 PM
Well Mighty Moose I thought by now I would have good news but. I believe my main problem now with installing this blasted timing belt (besides being incompetent) is that I seem to be missing a spring that puts tension the tensioner. I really don't believe it was there from the start. Perhaps it came loose when the belt stripped teeth.I loosened up the 2 bolts that retain the tensioner, there is no "snap or spring feeling to it". Any idea where I could buy said spring? Everything I have seen mentions "release bolt let tensor snap back on belt".Can't seem to locate spring online yet. Without tensioner belt wants to ride on the left side of water pump. Belt on and off 5 times now. It's really tight putting on. For a while I thought maybe I had the wrong belt. I guess you can tell I'm having problems . thanx Strongback

08-07-2007, 04:13 PM
I doubt you will find just the spring... you will need a tensioner assembly.
I just looked online at a couple common parts stores and they have what you need in stock. Go in and have them get out a tensioner for you, and if there is no spring included, have them get out the tensioner kit. and check that.

08-16-2007, 03:41 PM
Well mighty Moose still here. Got spring and another tensor from local boneyard. Installed over weekend,whole lot easier timing and installing belt. Crap I did it a couple times with the spring, it makes the tension just right.I stupidly ran the vehicle while it was running Rough and now i think I ruined the rotor cap. The #1 postion on cap is file,including copper like dust on the distrubutor shaft. Still running a little rough. Foregon thought I need to change the distrub and rotor. Does all this make sense. I swear I notice a little more oil coming out of where the cam sprocket screws in. Thanx again M.M. for your time. Strongback

08-16-2007, 05:25 PM
If running rough I would first make absolutely sure that the timing is set correctly.
After that, make sure plugs and wires are good. If the distributor has not had any servicing in some time, then perhaps it is something you should consider. There are a number of things that can cause the engine to run rough. Make sure you do plenty of checking before you start replacing parts.

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