2.3L & 2.5L I4 Tech General discussion of 2.3L and 2.5L I4 Ford Ranger engines.

Adding to the list of SPOUT threads, but mine is different (I think)

Old 02-02-2019
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Join Date: Feb 2019
Location: Chattanooga, Tennessee
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Adding to the list of SPOUT threads, but mine is different (I think)

Alright, I have a '94 2.3L with starting problems. With the SPOUT plug connected, it won't start; however, it will start with it unplugged and it will stay running if I plug it back in after it has started. It's not likely the ECM, because I just replaced it with a rebuilt one after experiencing this problem. I have checked all wires for continuity and they're all fine. Any one have any ideas?
Old 02-02-2019
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Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Vancouver, BC
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Welcome to the forum

The SPOUT(SPark OUT) is the "vacuum advance" for electronic ignitions

In your TFI system the TFI module sends the PIP(profile ignition pulse), to the computer so it can time the fuel injectors
The computer has driver input and air:fuel ratios, so it acts as the vacuum advance, a richer mix burns faster so you want less advance, leaner mix burns slower so more advance
When you "step on the gas" spark must retard fast for the richer mix
Computer sends out these spark changes to the TFI module so it can adjust the spark timing for fuel mix and acceleration

On startup the TFI module should IGNORE any SPOUT signal, it uses base spark timing of 10-12deg BTDC, above say 400RPMs TFI will start to use SPOUT suggestions

There are TWO different TFI modules, early, grey color, and late, black color, they are NOT interchangeable, different wiring harness

The grey TFI module had a START wire, it had 12volts when starter motor was turning, telling it to IGNORE SPOUT
The Black module didn't have this, it is suppose to ignore SPOUT under 400RPMs.

But the plugs on BOTH of these is exactly the same, if you plug in a grey module to Black module wiring, or visa versa you can get what you describe

Good read here on TFI module: http://www.myo-p.com/Ford-EEC/EEC%20..._or_black.html

You can get a timing light and disable fuel pump, pull relay or fuse
Crank the engine, you should have 10-12deg BTDC while cranking, if its jumping up past 20deg then TFI module is NOT ignoring SPOUT when cranking, which you kind of already know, i.e. no start with SPOUT connected

In the old days when you cranked an engine with vacuum advance, there is no vacuum cranking, well 2" maybe, lol, so no advance, after engine starts then vacuum advance changed spark timing, as it should
So analogy is very close

Last edited by RonD; 02-02-2019 at 09:57 PM.
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