2002 GMC Safari - Rain/Snow=No Go (AKA....My Last GM)

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#1
Anybody familiar with the fix for the 4.3 litre engines that have the misfire / no-start problem from condensation in the distributor? Read it some time ago (something to do with removing vent screens?). I'm looking for a procedure that even I can follow. Also, are you supposed to be able to get that doghouse out of the vehicle without removing a seat? Seems to me that no matter how I turn it...it was made not to come out? Thanks!!!!!!!!!!!
 
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#2
There are several TSB for this one below, another for insulatng the A/C line to prevent condensation from dripping onto dist.

Parts and full text is available at your local friendly GMC dealer.....
Have to add: this is not a freebie



#03-06-04-041
Poor Engine Performance - Misfire, Rough Idle, Service Engine Soon/Check Engine Light Illuminated, DTC P0300 Set (Inspect DIstributor Ignition (DI) System Components and Replace As Necessary) #03-06-04-041 - (08/26/2003)
Poor Engine Performance -- Misfire, Rough Idle, Service Engine Soon/Check Engine Light Illuminated, DTC P0300 Set (Inspect Distributor Ignition (DI) System Components and Replace As Necessary)
2001-2003 Chevrolet Astro, Blazer, Express, S-10, Silverado

2001-2003 GMC Jimmy, Safari, Savana, Sierra, Sonoma

2001 Oldsmobile Bravada

with 4.3L, 5.0L or 5.7L Gas Engine (VINs W, X, M, R -- RPOs L35, LU3, L30, L31)

Condition
Some customers may comment on poor engine performance and the Service Engine Soon/Check Engine light being illuminated. Upon investigation, the technician may find DTC P0300 set.

Cause
This condition may be due to high levels of internal corrosion in the distributor, causing spark to go to the wrong cylinder. This corrosion is attributed to a lack of air flow internal to the cap caused by the EIP screens being clogged with debris.

Correction
Inspect the internal components of the Distributor Ignition System using the procedure listed below. A new distributor base has been released for service with improved airflow screens.

Inspect the distributor cap. You may notice a white residue on the cap walls. For higher mileage occurrences, the interior of the cap may have changed to medium brown in color.
Inspect the distributor rotor. You may notice the presence of black streaks on the plastic surface. More typical evidence would be visible green spots on the copper surface of the rotor segment.
Inspect the distributor base. You may notice high levels of surface rust on the distributor shaft or surface contamination on the sensor hold down screws.
Inspect the distributor EIP screen. The screens should be free of any debris and the mesh should be visibly porous.
All of these inspection can be done on-vehicle. If there is evidence of this internal corrosion, replace the affected component. Refer to the appropriate procedure in the Engine Controls sub-section of the applicable Service Manual.

In addition, it has been determined on the Sierra and Silverado applications with the 4.3L engine that the A/C accumulator line is routed directly above the distributor area and condensation from that line can aggravate the corrosion condition. For these vehicles, install the foam sleeve, P/N 15190971, to the A/C line. Cut a slit in the sleeve and secure to the line using tie-straps.

Parts Information
Part Number
Description

10452458
Cap, Distributor (V6)

10452457
Rotor, Distributor (V6 and V8)

93441559
Distributor (V6)

10452459
Cap, Distributor (V8)

93441558
Distributor (V8)

15190971
Foam Sleeve


Parts are currently available from GMSPO.
 
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paulc

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#3
Believe it or not the doghouse DOES come out, at least on my 2001. Just be careful of the A/C line, don't want to interrupt the cheesy GM crimping on the fittings. Would like to check dist. on mine, however, I can't loosen the dist. cap screws. Guess that's not a good sign. No engine codes, yet. Probably just run it till it dies, then pull out the whole dist. and trash can it. Would like to know how to set base timing, since that dist. is so accessible (once you fight the doghouse) and SHOULD be easy ( not cheap) to R & R.
 

Transman

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#4
FWIW, there is no timing set on that one. The dist is locked into place and not adjustable. You use the scanner when a component is replaced, crank sensor, for example and tell it to re-learn. Transman
 
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#5
Thanks....from what I can see, the distributor itself is not corroded...but the cap has some white and green fuzzies inside. Where are these EIP screens? I'll likely be using "Champion" parts for whatever needs to be replaced. No worries about the distributor cap screws being seized. I remove them religiously every time it snows or rains (well okay...not every time). I even have a dedicated hair dryer for drying out the cap. I'll give that doghouse another try. "local friendly GMC dealer"....that's another story for another day in another place.
 

olejb

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#6
Not sure about this year but all the Safaris I've been into had two bolts through from the engine side.
Get a flashlight and look about halfway up on the doghouse from the firewall side-should be a bracket
on each side with a big slot-head bolt.
 
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#8
olejb...I could get all the doghouse bolts and nuts out...just had a hard time getting the thing out past the seats. Anyway...the job is done using the Champion brand replacement cap and rotor button. NOW I REMEMBER how I found out about this "known problem" with these GMs. It was in the instructions that came with the Champion parts. Good thing they knew more than the local ... no ... wait ... better stay off that topic... Anyway, took out the little screens (they weren't dirty at all...I blame it all on crappy design)...and sprayed a light coating of non-conductive rust inhibitor on the distributor guts (not corroded hardly at all). Put in the new parts and all is well...except it was twice as hard getting that doghouse back in there. The pins inside the old dist cap were covered in white "fur" with some signs of arcing on some of them. There is already a sleeve on the A/C line that runs over the top of the distributor...so okay there. Hopefully I can now remove the tools from the van, and give my daughter's hair dryer back. Glad to have this "not covered by extended warranty water leak" finally fixed...darn...there I go again. :eek: Thanks all!!
 
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#9
2002 GMC Safari - Spoke Too Soon???? (AKA....My Last GM)

After the cap/button replacement...used the van 1 time for about 5 miles and everything was fine. That was 2 days ago. Now, this afternoon, it won't start. Rolls and rolls but doesn't even kick. There must be something else going on, yet before...everytime I took the cap off and dried it...the van would start and work until the next rain/wind. Is there anything I can/should check before I pull that doghouse again. :mad: Thanks!
 
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#10
Basic trouble shooting... strat simple..
is CEL on?
Is security light on?
spark at several plugs??
As you were just in the Cap -double check it
fuel pressure?
 
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#11
thanks kev2...CEL light is on steady when cranking, if that means anything, security light is not on, only have an old in-line timing light but when i connect it (as best I can) I get a flash from all 6 plug wires, don't have any way to check fuel pressure but if I spray starting fluid in air intake, it still shows no sign of life. Pulled the doghouse again and checked everything with the new cap. Everything looks fine. Funny part of this is that after replacing the parts it worked A-1 for that short test run...so something happened after I shut it off on that day. :-\ Also, checked fuel pump fuse and relay...all good. Any suggestions greatly appreciated!!
 
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#12
Sounds like we are on to something....As you crank engine to start have someone spray Carb/brake* cleaner into intake does it try to start?? NO would be an indicator of a problem with spark.

going to have to check at the plugs MAYBE enough to fire off light but not jump gap....ddouble check that coil wire and center post of cap & rotor.
turn the key to on position CEL should go out @2seconds.... staying on would be indicator of codes stored.


* starting fluid (AKA boom boom juice) is not the choice for this, considered to HARD on components....
 
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paulc

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#13
I was looking at another board for the same issue and someone used a aftermarket cap and rotor resulting in the same symptoms. Reinstall the original cap and rotor and see if it lights. I have gotten to the point where I'm very selective in which aftermarket parts I will use. If I ever get the screws loose on my cap, it will be replaced with GM parts. Had a Saturn with a miss under load, replaced plugs and wires with a well known aftermarket brand, no difference, used genuine Saturn parts, been running fine ever since.
 
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#14
Can't imagine why something so simple like a cap and rotor button could appear fine and cause this problem...but hey paulc...I had the same thought...I am going to put the original parts back in to see what happens. I'll be back. Thanks! RB
 
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#15
;D Hey...check out this latest update. I discovered something this morning that I think may have been the cause of my problems all along. I put the original cap and rotor back in...no better. Took the distributor right out and cleaned it up and checked it over. No problems there. Put the new parts back in. Got my wife to turn the key while I sprayed in the carb cleaner (boom boom juice returned to the garden tiller). Still no go...but YES YES YES YES...I spoted something. The tower on the ignition coil, just below where the coil wire connects, is arcing to the metal case of the coil. Like kev2 said...there is enough juice getting through to flash the timing light...but not to fire the plugs. Took the coil out and inspected it. No cracks or obvious damage...so there must just be a breakdown of the insulation. Going now for a new coil. Really hopeful that this fixes it and ends my ignition troubles for a long time. I'll be back. Thanks! RB