Question about 1981 Chevrolet Corvette

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81 chevrolet corvette will not start. pick-up coil, ignition coil, and ignition module have all been replaced. a new battery, new spark plugs, new distributor cap & rotor were installed. there is fire to the distributor but no fire going out. turns over well and does not back fire. what would keep the engine from starting?

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  • levnkj Apr 08, 2010

    what is the ecu? someone else suggested the hall effect switch. . . what do you think???

  • levnkj Apr 08, 2010

    yeah I was under the same assumption. the pick-up coil is located under the distributor. basically the whole distributor has been rebuilt. I have no spark past the distributor. I'm beginning to wonder if maybe the cap and/or rotor may be bad. just doesn't make sense.

  • toneman2121
    toneman2121 May 11, 2010

    can you describe what happened when you first noticed the car wouldn't start? do you remember any unusual noises? if you've replaced everything and made sure all are properly installed and in working order, take the cap off the distributor to see if the shaft is turning.

  • toneman2121
    toneman2121 May 11, 2010

    i was under the assumption that the pick-up coil basicly performs the same function as a hall effect switch, sending the spark to the correct cylinder. both are located in the distributor. what is the pick-up coil you are refering to?

  • toneman2121
    toneman2121 May 11, 2010

    you've replaced all electical and electronic components, except the ecu. perhaps this is at fault. otherwise i would think something mechanically wrong with the distributor

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Check the hall effect switch in the distributor. That will cause this problem for no spark

Posted on Apr 08, 2010

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My 81 f250 351 winsor isnt getting spark ignition module ,coil ,distributor,cap and rotor,plugs and wires all new i gapped plugs at .044 help


got +12v to the ign coil? does the coil spark if you ground the negative(-) terminal? does the distributor rotor rotate? it may be time to replace the distributor sproket and module (stator and armature). http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/Ovalex/2010-12-11_153049_duraspark_stator_exploded_view.gif

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Getting spark and fuel and did a tune up and put new injectors in there but the car cranks but wont start and it is 1988 corvette


The ignition module and the pick-up coil/stator located inside of the distributor is what generates the signal that the ECM (Engine Control Module) uses to time and fire the fuel injectors, as well as the signal to run the fuel pump and the dwell signal timing to fire the ignition coil, and a faulty ignition module can cause any one of these systems to malfunction.

That does sound like a malfunction with the ignition module inside of the distributor, and you can remove the ignition module and have it tested for free at most auto part stores.

If you do purchase a new ignition module be sure that it does come with a silicone grease or a die-electric compound because it is a heat sink and the ignition module will burn up without it.

To install the new ignition module first clean out the mounting surface inside of the distributor. Then completely coat the metal contact surface under the ignition module with a thick coat the silicone grease or die-electric compound and do not leave any of the metal contact surface of the ignition module un-coated with the silicone grease or die-electric compound, and be very careful not to over-tighten the ignition module or it will be damaged.

The same principal applies to HEI (High Energy Ignition) ignition systems with the ignition coil mounted in the top of the distributor cap.

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No spark from spark plug wires I think it may be the distributor cap or interior parts under cap like rotor and condensor but dont want to change parts thats are fine i replaced the plugs but still no...


There wrere two types of HEI (High Energy Ignition) distributors used by GM in 1985, one was the original design with the ignition coil mounted in the top of the distributor cap, and the second had the coil mounted seperate from the distributor and used a coil wire.

There is the possibility that the ignition coil is faulty and first check to see if full battery voltage is even getting to the "Pos" (+) positive side of the ignition coil when the key is in the "Run" position, and also if the coil is seperate from the distributor that full battery voltage is getting through the "Pos" (+) or positive side of the ignition coil and over to the distributor ignition module, dis-connect the wire connector from the ignition module and if battery voltage is not present at the connector to the ignition module with the key in the "Run" position but it is present at the "Pos" side of the ignition coil, then the ignition coil is faulty. If battery voltage is present then check the ohms between the high tension terminal (where the coil wire goes on the ignition coil) and the "Pos" terminal on the ignition coil by first dis-connecting the wires from the ignition coil and then test with the "Neg" lead from the ohm meter in the high tension terminal on the ignition coil, and the "Pos" lead from the ohm meter to the the "Pos" terminal on the ignition coil, and the ohm reading should be between 6,000 and 30,000 ohms and if not replace the ignition coil. A faulty ignition coil can also damage the ignition module.

The ignition module and the pick-up coil/stator located inside of the distributor is what generates the signal that the ECM (Engine Control Module) uses to time and fire the fuel injectors, as well as the signal to run the fuel pump and the dwell signal timing to fire the ignition coil, and a faulty ignition module can cause any one of these systems to malfunction.

That could be a malfunction with the ignition module inside of the distributor, and you can remove the ignition module and have it tested for free at most auto part stores. If the ignition module does test out alright then the problem could still be in the pick-up coil/stator, (it can be tested using an ohm meter by dis-connecting the wire connector from the pick-up coil/stator and the ohm reading between the two wires from the pick-up coil/stator should be between 500 and 1500 ohm's, and both of the wires from the pick-up coil/stator should show an open loop or an infinite reading between each wire and ground) and if the pick-up coil/stator is found to be faulty then replace the entire distributor, or the distributor will have to be dis-assembled to install a new pick-up coil/stator.

If you do purchase a new ignition module be sure that it does come with a silicone grease or a die-electric compound because it is a heat sink and the ignition module will burn up without it.

To install the new ignition module first clean out the mounting surface inside of the distributor. Then completely coat the metal contact surface under the ignition module with a thick coat the silicone grease or die-electric compound and do not leave any of the metal contact surface of the ignition module un-coated with the silicone grease or die-electric compound, and be very careful not to over-tighten the ignition module or it will be damaged.

Let me know if you require any further assistance.


GM HEI Ignition Coil (Mounted In Distributor Cap Type)
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Jul 30, 2010 | 1985 Chevrolet Chevy

1 Answer

What would cause my car to not send spark to the spark plugs


The first thing is do you know when the last time was that the distributor cap, ignition rotor, and spark plug wires were changed?

There is the possibility that the ignition coil is faulty and first check to see if full battery voltage is getting to the "Pos" (+) positive side of the ignition coil when the key is in the "Run" position, and also that full battery voltage is getting through the "Pos" (+) or positive side of the ignition coil and over to the distributor ignition module, dis-connect the wire connector from the ignition module and if battery voltage is not present at the connector to the ignition module with the key in the "Run" position but it is present at the "Pos" side of the ignition coil, then the ignition coil is faulty. If battery voltage is present then check the ohms between the high tension terminal (where the coil wire goes on the ignition coil) and the "Pos" terminal on the ignition coil by first dis-connecting the wires from the ignition coil and then test with the "Neg" lead from the ohm meter in the high tension terminal on the ignition coil, and the "Pos" lead from the ohm meter to the the "Pos" terminal on the ignition coil, and the ohm reading should be between 6,000 and 30,000 ohms and if not replace the ignition coil. A faulty ignition coil can also damage the ignition module.

The ignition module and the pick-up coil/stator located inside of the distributor is what generates the signal that the ECM (Engine Control Module) uses to time and fire the fuel injectors, as well as the signal to run the fuel pump and the dwell signal timing to fire the ignition coil, and a faulty ignition module can cause any one of these systems to malfunction.

That could be a malfunction with the ignition module inside of the distributor, and you can remove the ignition module and have it tested for free at most auto part stores. If the ignition module does test out alright then the problem could still be in the pick-up coil/stator, (it can be tested using an ohm meter by dis-connecting the wire connector from the pick-up coil/stator and the ohm reading between the two wires from the pick-up coil/stator should be between 500 and 1500 ohm's, and both of the wires from the pick-up coil/stator should show an open loop or an infinite reading between each wire and ground) and if the pick-up coil/stator is found to be faulty then replace the entire distributor, or the distributor will have to be dis-assembled to install a new pick-up coil/stator.

If you do purchase a new ignition module be sure that it does come with a silicone grease or a die-electric compound because it is a heat sink and the ignition module will burn up without it.

To install the new ignition module first clean out the mounting surface inside of the distributor. Then completely coat the metal contact surface under the ignition module with a thick coat the silicone grease or die-electric compound and do not leave any of the metal contact surface of the ignition module un-coated with the silicone grease or die-electric compound, and be very careful not to over-tighten the ignition module or it will be damaged.

Let me know if you require a firing order diagram any further assistance with testing or diagnostic procedures.




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Jul 29, 2010 | 1995 Chevrolet Blazer

3 Answers

1989 chev corvette will turn over good but want start


check the basics fuel and spark plenty of possibilities ignition module ,fuel pump

Sep 24, 2008 | 1984 Chevrolet Corvette

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