4.3 GXI-F (2005) No spark or power at the coil. How do I check?

AdrianKauai

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Hey Guys,
4.3 volvo penta GXI-F model engine (2005).
1998 seaswirl Cuddy cabin
She was running and purring just fine...
Project boat and just about everything that could be swapped for new has been changed and dealt with. I can list later.
Yesterday went out to crank her over, after she has been starting right up super quick easy no worries, barely touch the key kind of starts, the kind that make your heart real happy. BUT NOW Today without changing or touching anything, I tried a couple times and she almost turned over but wouldn't kick. Try again and sounds like she is at more of a no spark turn over...shake my head and say hhhmmm weird. Stick on spark plug tester, crank..., but wait there are couple lights n spark...it tried and then nothing, check again and now NO light, no spark, no power. Shut battery off and reconnect everything. Try again, nothing.Crank crank crank, no juice. K KEEP it Simple, check ALL fuses, swap relay for fuel pump that I can hear fully kick on.

Pull Coil wire to distributor, crank, no spark.
Replace Brand new module, and coil. Nothing.
This is a 4.3 GXI-F so the ignition coil and wires are not like on any diagrams or manual I can find. Help... Please... my head hurts from beating it on this wall of What the F?

Ps. All 3 batteries are at 12.6V / Here is a pic of my coil and wires connected to module. No purple !!! IMG_9927.JPG
 
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alldodge

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almost turned over

My have some terminology differences, so to clear this up.
The motor does turn over and crank, it just won't start, correct?

What is the motor serial number?

Has the distributor cap and rotor been replaced?

Have you check fuel pressure at the rail? It should be 50 to 60 PSI (344 to 413 kpa)
 

AdrianKauai

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My have some terminology differences, so to clear this up.
The motor does turn over and crank, it just won't start, correct?

What is the motor serial number?

Has the distributor cap and rotor been replaced?

Have you check fuel pressure at the rail? It should be 50 to 60 PSI (344 to 413 kpa)
Correct its a Crank, no Start. Getting 12v power to everything except ignition module and coil. So no Spark.

Brand new cap n rotor.
Fuel pressure solid at 52psi.

The day before she started right up and ran like a champ, I was literally just giving her a test warm up before hitting the ocean in a couple days.
 

alldodge

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With that we need to see if there are any codes, so the motor needs scanned. It could be that crank sensor, ECM or other. To keep from throwing parts at it the motor needs to be scanned

My guess (no serial number provided) is its a 555 ECM and not a MEFI. If it was a MEFI we could scan by an easier means
 

AdrianKauai

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Correct its a Crank, no Start. Getting 12v power to everything except ignition module and coil. So no Spark.

Brand new cap n rotor.
Fuel pressure solid at 52psi.

The day before she started right up and ran like a champ, I was literally just giving her a test warm up before hitting the ocean in a couple days.
Well,I thought it was a brand new cap n rotor, however I just pulled it for S@#%@ n Giggles and .... completely corroded points. You may have been right on the money. Simple and overlooked. I'll keep ya posted.
 

AdrianKauai

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With that we need to see if there are any codes, so the motor needs scanned. It could be that crank sensor, ECM or other. To keep from throwing parts at it the motor needs to be scanned

My guess (no serial number provided) is its a 555 ECM and not a MEFI. If it was a MEFI we could scan by an easier means
IMG_9932.JPGIMG_9931.JPG
 

alldodge

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Thanks s/n 4012188494
555 ECM with HVS distributor

Hope the cap solves the issue. Most of us call then crap caps because they can look great and still fail. Its best to keep a spare in the boat just in case because they fail without warning.

If the cap does not fix, then we need to get the motor scanned
 

AdrianKauai

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With that we need to see if there are any codes, so the motor needs scanned. It could be that crank sensor, ECM or other. To keep from throwing parts at it the motor needs to be scanned

My guess (no serial number provided) is its a 555 ECM and not a MEFI. If it was a MEFI we could scan by an easier means
Ok, Brand new Cap n Rotor. I prayed. Nadda. Nothing. I'm not getting power to my iginition module, so no power to coil, so no spark. Checked ground to module = good. No 12v on any of the other terminals.

I could be at scanner time, but its so weird that all was just fine. Feels like a fuse or relay, but I have now checked them more than 10 times and they are fine and there is 12v power going to them with test light and relay pulled.

This is from Manual and specific for 4.3 gxi-f Cant see what the yellow connects to for 12vpower though.
Screen Shot 2021-10-14 at 2.08.57 PM.png
 

AdrianKauai

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Screen Shot 2021-10-14 at 2.16.45 PM.png
Checked relay at R5 has 12v power. Switched to fuel pump relay as I can hear that turn on everytime. Checked F4 fuse, F5. All good, and 12v power at one side.Screen Shot 2021-10-14 at 2.20.27 PM.png
 

alldodge

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So long as the fuel pump relay (R4) turns ON, it means ignition (R5) is working. We are down to scanning and hope it doesn't mean the ECM blew
 

Wave34

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Do you have a safety lanyard? If it is defective, the engine will crank, but no 12V will go to the ECU and coil. A defective ignition switch is a possibility also.

alldodge, his boat is swapped with a 2005 GXi engine, so it must be a MEFI ECU.

It is possible to read the codes with a LED and jumper. Just google it it is somewhere.
 

alldodge

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alldodge, his boat is swapped with a 2005 GXi engine, so it must be a MEFI ECU.
If this is correct then it can. That said, looking at cap pic in post 7, that's a flat cap which wasn't used (that I'm aware of) on a MEFI
 

ripjmk

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From the OP post from his manual it can be seen that the ECU is a 90 pin Volvo Penta not a MEFI or a 555. I know nothing about the 90 pin ECU so can't be of any help. Best guess would be the kill switch mentioned above.
 

AdrianKauai

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Gone through all tests and as far as I can tell everything checks out and all tests performed. Still so spark !!! WTFFFF... Finally I'm back to basic checks and upon checklist found 666 ohms resistance in coil wire, Manual calls for 1000 or more so, off to grab a new one, and keep you posted. I will most likely cry with joy and then laugh, and then shake my head if this turns out to be it. Screen Shot 2021-10-15 at 5.20.23 PM.pngScreen Shot 2021-10-15 at 5.21.01 PM.png
 

AdrianKauai

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FOLLOW UP SUCCESS !
I hope this post can help someone along the way. Thank you so much @alldodge and others who jumped in to lend a suggestion.

Tricky one... I had Pulled ignition module and coil bracket off to inspect harness connection. When getting plugged back in one of the pins folded over on module = no connection !!!! Plug connector seemed to go in fine and had power on A B D and C ground when it needed coming from the harness. (its a tight dark squeeze back there on my boat, and I was frustrated and not paying enough attention, late night)

I had ordered a new one anyway and it showed up right when I pulled the old one. So stuck that in keeping old one on boat as spare. (yes bent the pin back into place first)

Also a Combination of corroded points inside crap cap and rotor, along with a coil wire only reading at 666 ohms - manual called for a 1000. This was my original problem of no spark, bad wire. Then i confused myself by making the module stop working. SO Swapped brand new all.

Put it all back together, and Boooom combustion * we got Spark and ignition Houston = Yelling and screaming, jumping for freaking Joy after 4 days of wire chasing, probe testing, alligator clipping, and lots of swearing and banging head against transom.

My lesson, keep it simple, AND PUT IT BACK THE CORRECT WAY, It was just working perfectly.
 
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