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SOHC - 2.3L & 2.5L Lima Engines Discussions and Topics specific to the Lima 4 cylinder engines

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Old 07-10-2014
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Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: roland, ar
Posts: 2
Base Timing Problem

New to the site and have been searching but cannot find an answer. I picked up a 1995 Ext cab 2.3 5sp dirt cheep that was towed behind a motor home in first gear for a mile or two, engine was over revved and the valves were bent. Bought a used head, cleaned everything and installed the head & new timing belt w/tensioner, engine ran but was real sluggish. Used a timing light and checked the timing and was at 15deg BTDC The longer the engine ran the more the timing would change and it went to 28deg BTDC Stopped and restarted engine and the process started all over again. Well that engine locked up so I bought a used engine and installed it today and I still have the same timing issue, no CEL, starts easy. Any ideas?
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Old 07-10-2014
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Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Vancouver, BC
Posts: 7,580
The '89 and up 2.3ls were distributorless so no user adjustable timing.

In '95 Ford added the CPS(cam position sensor) and moved the ICM(ignition control module) into the new EEC-V(OBD II) computer, so computer controls the timing based on input from the CKP(crank position) sensor and a little input from CPS(CPS is mostly for injector timing).

If CKP sensor is not working engine won't start.
CPS could be the issue but you would get a CEL, so that really only leaves the computer as the problem.

Does the CEL come on with the key and then go off after a few seconds?
You may want to rent an OBD II scanner and watch some live data while engine is running, see why computer thinks it needs to change the timing.
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Old 07-29-2014
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: roland, ar
Posts: 2
OK been very busy with other things but have been looking at the Ranger, started it today and the base timing has settled down to 14 deg BTDC with or without the SPOUT connector and with KOEO the CEL stays on and never goes off until the engine is running. Do I have a bad ECM?
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