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Phil Horsley

Rover V8 engine continually breaks down after 4-5 miles

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Hi All,

 

I am at the end of my tether, my Rover 4.0L V8 engine in my Grinnall, since being parked all over winter has developed a fault where it breaks down after 4-5 miles; I have been recovered twice by TR breakdown, excellent service by the way, there in 40 minutes both times, I have changed the following with new parts:

 

  • Oil pressure switch
  • Distributor
  • Coil
  • Ballast resistor
  • Fuel pump
  • Fuel line front to back
  • Filters
  • Checked the fuel pick up is clear in the tank
  • By passed the immobiliser

Next items to check/change

  • Ignition switch
  • Earth straps

There has been two symptoms, no fuel in to the carb and no spark, both have caused the actual breakdowns.

 

Is there something I am missing, has anyone else experienced this?

 

I look forward to your ideas and comments!!!!!

 

Best wishes

 

Frustrated Phil :wub:

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Phil,

A few more symptoms would help the diagnosis.

Did the engine just stop.

Or did it falter, refuse to rev, become intermittent ,or something else?

 

The first would definitely be electical and ignition circuit, probably low volts side, while the second could be fuel, esp. if none was being delivered, but could also be electrical.

 

Lastly, was there much fuel in the tank over winter? Modern fuel loses volatiles over time and can go 'off' and, if it has much alcohol in it, can attract water. Drain the tank, use what's in it for the lawn mower and refill with some fresh stuff.

 

John

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Whilst always remembering what Doug Hele told me (Triumph Motorcycle guru par excellance)

"Remember Brian, 99 per cent of all Electrical problems are Fuel related....don't forget the reverse is also true"

If it was a motorcycle that gave up the ghost after that distance..I'd be thinking Fuel tank breather.

I know you aren't going to take a 5 mile drive to prove it but...if you did and it stopped then released the petrol cap and it went?

Does that car stop if you just leave it ticking over on your drive?

I find it hard to believe that you have had an ignition AND fuel malfunction simultaneously.

If the ignition is dead and you have no fuel it does lead you to the thought that its an immobiliser problem, I'm assuming that it might disarm the electrical fuel pump as it disarms the ignition?

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" ....no fuel in the carb, no spark"

 

Ignition switch?

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I had a problem on my TR8 when the alternator started dying. The electronic ignition started playing up. The car started losing power then died altogether. I connected my battery pack and was away again! Until that went flat!

 

Cheers John

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Has the car been driven until it stops between each of the items changed above ? Or was it frustration that just lead to wholesale replacement of loads of available items because you had them to hand ?

 

John Davies comments above are good, fuel change to fresh and try the car, then when/if it stops note the symptoms to allow for a progressive diagnosis, there's loads of experience on this forum which if you give the feedback stands the best chance of sorting for you.

 

Mick Richards

Edited by Motorsport Mickey

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Thanks everyone,

 

To reply, yes each change of component was after a breakdown its been going on weeks now, yes the distributor was a completely new Mallory with coil and ballast resistor, the fuel was freshened. Ruled out vacuum by driving with cap loose :0( By the way I also have fitted a new battery as the old one was lazy!

 

The breakdown symptom was; car performing AOK, reached about 4-5 miles engine totally died, no sputtering, waited for 20 minutes starts again then similar distance does the same, maybe does this twice more then dies completely, I can't replicate the breakdown by tick over or by constant 2k revs for circa 10 minutes. Alternator output is OK but a bit lazy initially but delivers over 14V. Fitting the ignition switch and earth lead next here's hoping!!!!!

 

Further feedback very welcome :) please, the really annoying thing is I can't pull my hair out as I having chemotherapy and its already dropped out :wacko:

 

Best wishes,

 

Phil B)

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Sounds electrical to me. Seeing as so much has been substituted I would be tempted to run a new simple power supply system from the battery to the coil/distributer independent of all the other circuitry.A bit like old fashioned hot wiring. Ignore original ignition circuit power supply through the ignition switch, charging system etc. i.e. remove and insulate the original supply to the coil.

Is your Mallory distributer simple points and condenser,; if so it keeps things really simple.

When/if your car stops again whip a plug lead off and check for a spark with a spare plug. If you have sparks then you would have to look at a fuelling issue. Beware that to stop the engine you will need to break the power supply to the ignition coil or stall the engine!

Good luck. David

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Here's an unusual fix.

 

Sounds like temporary fuel starvation because there's something loose and floppy in the tank. After the 5 miles of driving the suction eventually pulls it onto the tank outlet and causes the fuel starvation, when stopped the suction slowly degrades and the offending item drops back onto the tank floor waiting for another drive with suction to repeat the process.

 

Have you put octane booster or something similar into the petrol ? anything like paint inside your fuel tank won't like it and gets stripped off and the resulting pieces will peel off and cause the symptoms you've listed above, ask me how I know this !

 

I used some race fuel that had been stored in jerrycans with octane booster in, took me bloody weeks going through the symptoms as you have before I removed the tank and flushed it out and cured it in one.

 

Mick Richards

 

Sorry Phil, just reread your fixes and you say you have checked the tank fuel outlet so if you think my above ramblings are useless just ignore.

 

Mick

Edited by Motorsport Mickey

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I had similar on my 4.6. Totally died after driving a few miles, after I had replaced a seized electronic distributor with a Malory dual point.

Only replacing said Mallory with a new electronic one find the problem go away.

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Hi Phil

This might sound stupid, but are you getting fuel evaporation? Is the Grinnall fuel injected or carbs, I have a Holly 4 barrel with Offenhauser manifold and this set up can be prone to fuel evaporation.

.

 

Sorry to hear you are on chemo,unfortunatley been been there and back,but the hair does grow back again so you will be able to once again pull it out!!!!!! ;)

Cheers

Moe

Edited by moe and ess

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Hi Phil,

I have come across the problem that Mick Richards explains. Fungal growth in the tank (on a TR5).

 

If you look inside the tank please do use a sealed safety torch.

 

certainly worth a look.

 

Roger

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Real pain isn't it. I had identical problems which went on for a number of weeks which were just an occasional nuisance to begin with and gradually got worse to the point I HAD to do something.

Most of my ancillary parts were old and needed replacement anyway so I wasn't concerned about cost as it didn't owe me anything so, like you, I had replaced coil, pump, dizzy parts etc in the hope of hitting lucky. But still the same problem. Impossible I THOUGHT.

 

So, back to basics... after coming to a stop, leave ignition on, quickly pull bonnet and pull off the fuel hose - in my case just a dribble. So electrics were fine but new pump was faulty Basil, just like the old one I had replaced. Another new pump, all sorted.

 

I expect your new pump will be fine but at least this basic check would tell you whether you need to be looking at fuel OR electrics but not both and therefore reduce your search area by half.

Saggy

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What dizzie were you running before and why did you change it?

 

If the new Mallory is a dual point, suggest you pull it out, find a hedge and throw it as far as you can! (these things are the spawn of Satan).

 

If it is an electronic version I have no personal experience of these but at the back of my mind, i have a feeling tht they might need a full 12 volts so your ballasted coil might not be right for the job. Worth checking, anyway.

 

I had similar problems on my old Rangie after 'upgrading' to Mallory. Only cured the problem when I fitted a standart Lucas 35DLB and matching amp.

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What dizzie were you running before and why did you change it?

 

If the new Mallory is a dual point, suggest you pull it out, find a hedge and throw it as far as you can! (these things are the spawn of Satan).

 

If it is an electronic version I have no personal experience of these but at the back of my mind, i have a feeling tht they might need a full 12 volts so your ballasted coil might not be right for the job. Worth checking, anyway.

 

I had similar problems on my old Rangie after 'upgrading' to Mallory. Only cured the problem when I fitted a standart Lucas 35DLB and matching amp.

Totally agree. Same experience here.

H&H ignition rebuilt a fab electronic distributor.

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Hi Guys,

 

Thanks for the feedback, the original dizzy was a electronic DM8 as per Rover SD1, the Mallory is the electronic version not points, I now suspect the feed to the ignition and new Facet pump, Grinnall ran a white wire bypassing the resisted original TR7 points wiring from the back of the fuse box, so it may be dry or lose joint, I am also going to change the starter relay just in case?

 

Thanks for the kind words about my chemotherapy, any further feedback very welcome.

 

TRaah for now

 

Still Frustrated Phil

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Is the fuel pump body getting hot when it dies? It will have to pump much more fuel when drivng than at tickover- even at 2000rpm. Maybe 10x as much or more:

2-5hp vs 20-50 hp depending upon right foot.

Is it having to lift fuel from the tank or is it gravty fed ( better)?

Peter

Edited by Peter Cobbold

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Hi

Are you aware that Facet cylindrical pumps are " not designed to run at less than 12 volts!"

How do I know don't ask!!

Regards

John

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Phil,

 

As with John's comments above have you also looked at the filter on the bottom of the pump as well?

 

Best wishes for a speedy recovery

 

Ian

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Phil,

Has your car an "impact switch"? I mean the thing which cuts the fuel pump when you make an accident....or when it just feels like that. I had such a temperamental switch in my TR6 PI: the contacts under the steelball in the switch were corroded.

Wilfried

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Hi Guys, it's a brand new Facet and the filter is clear, I've also put a filter before the pump as added security, the pump isn't getting hot but I haven't checked voltage, hopefully I'll have some resolve this week?

 

Still very frustrated :unsure: Phil

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I had a similar problem with a "Filter before the Facet pump".

Only diagnosed with a temporary fuel pressure guage, which showed pressure drop at full throttle..

 

Found that the opaque plastic filter body the size of two fag packets contained the tiniest actual filter I have ever seen.

Which was blocked by a few specks of dirt.

 

As a Facet's internal filter is removeable and cleanable, I'd junk the pre-filter, and see if that cures the problem.

John

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Hi Guys & Gals,

 

I've Finally resolved it, it was a dual fault, firstly I have a 'spin on' connector on the negative, I could only get 1.5V from the new battery I fitted, I took it back to the supplier, he told me it was fully charged, (confused.com :wacko:) as I drove back I remembered an issue I had with the spin on fitted to the Eunos Roadster I have with a bad connection, took it out of line and hey presto she started, so not either distributor was duff, just intermittent negative/earth, the spin on was heavily pitted with arc marks and carbon, probably from not tightening properly sometime doooh :ph34r:, see the picture below, hopefully the new Mallory is not knackered as it was taken off by my local garage with no spark?

 

Anyway thinking it was sorted I took her for a spin with my mate Toney following in his RAV4, before I left I did 'jerry rig' a feed to the coil and put a fuel pressure gauge in line, true to form, circa 4 miles she cut out again, bu**er :angry: I thought, so I switched in the direct feed to the coil, still no joy, I could still hear the new Facet petrol (only would give 5psi) working but looked at the pressure gauge, showing a BIG FAT zero despite it was running, switched off, disconnected the fuel pipe and popped it over the wing and switched back on, a faint dribble came out then a reasonable pulse, not the full 8psi as specified but enough to run the Holley, reconnected the pipe, hey presto fuel pressure again and she started phew :huh:, got home and it did the same again, so I did some other tests after talking to the supplier, another direct battery feed to the pump to eliminate electrical, it worked but yet again went to zero pressure, then took the feed from the tank off and popped it in a can of petrol, again the pump worked but only at 4.5psi, Sooooo! its the bl**dy pump, brand new but faulty??!!!??? I won't write my thoughts :blink:

 

They sent a new one under warranty, just to make sure I checked the tank pickup and fitted a new one, (the old one leaking a bit through one of the electrical terminals but it was clear of any blockages), fitted new pump, took her for a spin today with my mate Toney duly following again and BINGO all's is AOK, what a nightmare. Having been ill, the car had been at my local garage who I've used for 30 years and they didn't sort it, some experts huh and I'm quite a few smackers lighter for nothing :blink:, just took a bit of logic and a simple test (Fuel psi meter and coil feed plus test runs) to resolve it, so Guys and Gals, don't even trust new parts if you get the same symptoms or the problem remains unresolved, as usual, be logical and use gut feel and beware of modern car mechanics without a laptop they are stumped, I always thought it was fuel, and checking battery connections and power is pretty basic apprentice training too.

 

Anyhow, now Happy Phil and back in Love with my Grinnall :wub:

 

Feedback and comments very welcome :D

 

Happy (but very pi**ed with garage) Phil

post-9825-0-27970400-1404149181_thumb.jpg

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Phil

now the Grinnall is back to full health - hope you are following suit!!!!!!!

Cheers

Ian

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