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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 04-08-2014, 04:56 PM Thread Starter
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2 problems

One I started my 97 Thunderbird up for the 1st time in several months today and no tachometer, any suggestions on how to fix that?

Also got a lean code from the scanner, you can tell the engine is a bit shakey at idle but smooths out when the throttle is depressed, my experience with other vehicles points to a possible intake gasket leak since there is a slight miss upon idle but goes away with when the throttle is applied. A vacuum leak can cause this as well but the vacuum hoses were replaced last year after I changed the plugs, I may look into it more this weekend, but that tachometer bugs me.

97 Thunderbird LX 4.6 sohc, 60,000 original miles and lots of room for improvement.... All show and no go for now...
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 04-08-2014, 06:36 PM
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it is also the gas you have in the car if it was sitting for that time it needs to burn out.

I have done that with my xr7 it clears up after a few days of driving and a new tank of gas.

the tack I would pull the gauges clean the conection and put some diolectric grease on it.

mine did the same as well till I did that.

but now my odometer wont work so it was a toss up

is the o2 sensors are the same ones it is time to replace them.

I replaced all four a little under 160.

The hardest ones I did on mine was the up stream than the down stream.

I figured if I was going to replace the front two I left it for a day the other two went.

I was glad I got all four.

I hoped it helped
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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 04-08-2014, 07:15 PM
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Originally Posted by Raymondo112 View Post
One I started my 97 Thunderbird up for the 1st time in several months today and no tachometer, any suggestions on how to fix that?

Also got a lean code from the scanner, you can tell the engine is a bit shakey at idle but smooths out when the throttle is depressed, my experience with other vehicles points to a possible intake gasket leak since there is a slight miss upon idle but goes away with when the throttle is applied. A vacuum leak can cause this as well but the vacuum hoses were replaced last year after I changed the plugs, I may look into it more this weekend, but that tachometer bugs me.
Tach is electronic; it's a connector problem, or a connection at the flex circuit that is behind the cluster.

Pulling the Cluster, you will be.

Actually, try smacking the dash; don't break your dash... but it might make it work again.

If it works, it's in the cluster or a connector in the dash, lol.

I wouldn't worry about how it runs until you get new gas in it; unless you put stabil or something in the gas, it's bad in a month.

Get at least half a tank of good gas in it, add a can of seafoam to the tank, and drive it a bunch.

Then see what still isn't right on a datalog.

Old gas doesn't burn the same...

I've got two bikes sitting here, full to the brim with 5yo gasoline. You Always leave metal tanks full!

I plan to ride both this year, so I have to remove carbs from both, disassemble, clean, and reassemble 8 carbs to have them on the road.

I won't be using the gas out of them for anything but burning brush.

Red '96 Cougar XR-7 240k mi. '02 4R70W, PST DS : '03 PI engine, 04 maf, 24lb injectors, 2.5" exhaust, '02 4r70w + Jmod, DirtyD0g TC + cooler + 3/8" lines, 255 walbro fp. Alpine system.
Black '96 Cougar XR-7 (Lazarus) 210k mi PI Intake, '02 4R70W, Jmod, PST DS, GrogTune, Konis, Mark LCA+Poly, racecougar Custom Engine Chain, and JL and racecougar Bracing.
Black '97 Tbird Limited Edition, '02 4R70W, 255 walbro, PST DS, PBR Brakes&SS lines, Toicko Blues & Springs, GrogTune.


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Last edited by Grog6; 04-08-2014 at 07:23 PM.
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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 04-08-2014, 07:21 PM
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on mine one of the tabs on the conector was so corroded I had to clean it. I thought the gauge stopped working when I went to put in the Taurus one that's what I have seen.

just wanted to pass it along
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 04-08-2014, 10:47 PM
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I only drive my bird if the temp is above 60 and the weather forecasts 10% or less for rain...and I live in a humid place (memphis). I have these kinds of "issues" every time I gear up to get her ready for driving season.

as for the codes, I almost always get a lean code on my first start up. this is what has worked for me to get it going again.
1. run the car until what fuel is left is almost gone...typically misses and runs like crap(that or i pull the tank and dump what fuel is left into my small lawn equipment gas can)
2. put around a 1/4 tank of new gas in with 1/4 bottle of seafoam and run another 1/4 of the bottle of seafoam through the vacuum line that goes to the brake booster until the car stops smoking. with enough of it it'll kill ever mosquito within a block
3. put in a new set of cheap plugs, fuel filter, oil/filter change
4. drive it until that 1/4 tank of new gas and 1/4 bottle of seafoam is almost gone
5. fill up with gas and dump the last half the seafoam bottle into the tank and by this point my light goes off.

as for the tach, pull that cluster out and clean up the connections.

im confident you have no major issues other than a crappy winter leading to what i deal with almost every spring. I do this routine with the same results. a great running car.

Id also like to note that prior to this harsh winter I swapped in a complete 03 4.6 from an explorer and drove it when i first did the swap with no issues. started up the car last week with the same exact problems i've had before. this process solved it once again.
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 04-09-2014, 04:25 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the helpful info, indeed it was last years gas, so I will run it out and see what happens, looks like this weekend I will be pulling the dash cluster to clean the tabs, haven't pulled it out of the driveway so no idea if the speedo works.

I need to change the oil as well, was thinking of using some Mobil one synthetic 5w30 and a motor craft filter of course, and it needs a wash and detail from sitting, other than that it is almost ready for cruising. Can't hardly wait...

97 Thunderbird LX 4.6 sohc, 60,000 original miles and lots of room for improvement.... All show and no go for now...
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