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No spark in the cold
01-01-2018, 07:49 PM
Post: #1
No spark in the cold
2000 Chevy s10 w/ 4.3L 150k around Wichita Kansas
My son's S10 pickup will not start when it gets below about 20 degrees. If you go out later in the day when it is generally warmer it will start up and run fine. We have pulled a plug and there is no fire. I have replaced the coil and electronic control module. It had new plugs, wires, cap, and bug installed about 6 months ago. I'm at my Wit's End trying to figure out why it is not firing. Any help would be appreciated.
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01-01-2018, 11:08 PM
Post: #2
RE: No spark in the cold
It would not be unheard of for an ignition switch to fail intermittently, but it would be better if you can pin it down via a better diagnosis first. Is 12 volts reaching the ignition coil?

I also have to ask what you are using to judge the no spark condition? Have you checked for spark at the coil wire? Reason being is aftermarket caps and rotors are prone to early "burn through" so the spark never reaches the plugs. Same goes for many cheap brands of plug wires where they don't carry the juice well in the morning dew. (shorting to ground)

Spark should be a snappy blue color. If you have something but not hot enough, then it will be hard starting.

BTW, just in case you are mistaken on the spark situation, that 150k is about prime time for fuel pump failure. IOW, low pressure combined with cooler morning temps can make it hard starting. As the day warms up things are not as fussy.

Let us know what you find and we can post more.
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01-02-2018, 07:17 AM
Post: #3
RE: No spark in the cold
I agree with Rupe on the aftermarket parts. I have owned many 4.3's and found that most of my starting issues were in the aftermarket ignition parts. Some caps and rotors would only last a week. I have also seen the plug wires shooting the spark to the engine block or hood on cold mornings when there is frost or dew. When I bought GM/AC Delco parts; they cost a small fortune, but your engine starts.

Please keep us posted.

Thanks for using the forum,
Garner

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01-02-2018, 11:29 AM
Post: #4
RE: No spark in the cold
Just a heads up. I put an order in with Rock Auto (on-line) last week for tune up parts on a Chevy 4.3 Got all OEM parts so I'll go from memory here. Rotor = $8, Dist cap = $20, Platinum plugs = $6 each, Wire set = $65 (?) Coil = $25, ign module = $50. Looking at it this way... OEM will last 100K miles and since a good tune takes time, I save in the long run because I never have to chase a ghost with OEM parts between services. Oh, some of our fleet is pushing 300K.

I don't work for Rock Auto and I don't endorse them (not strictly speaking) but I have found OEM parts available from them and Amazon for less than half of what the dealer charges, which is close to typical aftermarket $$ so why not?
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