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Jon_7
Dodge Dakota
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8/17/2008
15:25:13

Subject: 1989 Dakota V6 Missing/Hesitation
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I'm servicing my friend's 1989 truck for her since she's letting me borrow it and I'm doing some routine maintenance. Spark plugs and wires were replaced last year and all fluid levels are good to go. It was running great until the other day when it just started missing at idle and acceleration. I re-checked all the plug wires and plugs and they are in great condition. I even replaced a cracked PCV hose and reconnected another one as well that was loose, but it didn't help. It appears to be like the spark and/or fuel is just cutting out. The spark plugs were all fine (no signs of fuel saturation due to missing spark) and I'm just not sure what to do/check next.

Under part throttle acceleration it misses and bucks, but when I floor it, it appears to go away.

Any suggestions? I'd really like to fix this for her. Thanks!



Bob Lincoln
Dodge Dakota
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8/18/2008
09:10:18

RE: 1989 Dakota V6 Missing/Hesitation
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Check fault codes first.

http://allpar.com/fix/80s-codes.html



Jon_7
Dodge Dakota
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8/18/2008
20:36:39

RE: 1989 Dakota V6 Missing/Hesitation
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I get the following set of CEL flashes when I do the key switch on/off 3 times...

1 2 3 4 3 3 1 5 5 5



Bob Lincoln
Dodge Dakota
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8/19/2008
08:33:04

RE: 1989 Dakota V6 Missing/Hesitation
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OK, so:

12 Battery recently disconnected
34 speed control shorted or open
33 Air conditioning clutch relay circuit open or shorted
15 Speed sensor
55 End of Message

I'd check the speed sensor, which I believe is mounted at the rear axle. Check the electrical plug to see if clean and tight. If so, replace the sensor. I think the other errors are related to it.



Jon_7
Dodge Dakota
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8/20/2008
01:30:53

RE: 1989 Dakota V6 Missing/Hesitation
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Yea, two speed sensor messages would lead me to believe that was the culprit as well. However, why would the car be missing at idle if it's just a speed sensor? That doesn't make sense to me.



Jon_7
Dodge Dakota
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8/23/2008
16:19:25

RE: 1989 Dakota V6 Missing/Hesitation
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Just replaced the fuel filter and it seemed to get rid of 90% of it. It still has some random hiccups. Is this expected when just replacing the filter?



Jon_7
Dodge Dakota
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8/23/2008
17:12:12

RE: 1989 Dakota V6 Missing/Hesitation
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Oops, never mind. It's back to missing and hesitating again.

The weird thing now is, at idle it runs perfectly smooth. I revved it through all the RPM's and it's smooth as can be. HOWEVER, once I put it into drive, it starts running like crap.

What's going on here?



dirtynails
Dodge Dakota
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8/25/2008
11:53:52

RE: 1989 Dakota V6 Missing/Hesitation
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My son has an 87 3.9 liter 6 cyl. that is carbureted so it may be significantly different from yours. However, his would idle fine and rev fine as long as it was in park. In gear though it had no power. It ended up being a timing issue. The computer could compensate enough under no load but could not when in gear.

If you hadn't already checked the plug wires, I would have suggested that. Arcing under load but running fine under no load is common. Just for fun you might want to test it at night when you can see the arcing if it exists. If the truck has AC you can just leave it in park, fire it up, open the hood and turn the AC on. Many times the AC is sufficient load to cause the arcing.



Jon_7
Dodge Dakota
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8/25/2008
21:42:36

RE: 1989 Dakota V6 Missing/Hesitation
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Thanks for the info. I will definitely check that out tonight.



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