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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 06-18-2007
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Join Date: May 2007
Location: Cordova, TN
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Very slow when starting to accelerate

Hey guys I'm new to the forum. I have a '96 2.3L 4-banger, with a manual 5-speed. And I realize these engines are pretty darn weak to begin with, but lately its been acting a little different than it used to. When I first start to accelerate from a stop, it goes EXTREMELY slow even with the pedal to the floor. But sometimes during the middle of going through any given gear, it will get a sudden burst of power and start running like it used to. This "burst" of power usually seems to happen in 2nd or 3rd gear. I hope this makes sense but I don't know of any other way to describe it. It also seems to be idling a little bit rough. Any ideas?

I thought maybe the fuel filter could be clogged but putting a new one on didn't help. Spark plugs maybe? I'm not looking forward to changing those...
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Old 06-18-2007
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Welcome to R-F!

I have the same engine ('97 though) and I've never had any power issues with it.

Checking your plugs may be a good idea. Also your EGR valve and O2 sensor would be good things to do. Disclaimer: I'm not an engine guy. But that's where I'd start.
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Old 06-18-2007
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mine does the, my cel is on though but i dont really care, i bought it for gas mileage no raw power, i rode in another 4 banger ranger and it was the same as mine jus wit out the cel, could jus be out weak a** motors
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Old 06-18-2007
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Being that it's a 96, if you haven't already, you might want to do a tune up on it, -change the plugs, wires, cap and rotor (if it has them), O2 sensor, air filter and fuel filter. If it still does it after that, then I'd start looking into the electronics.
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Old 06-18-2007
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Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Vero Beach, Florida
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Definitely try the tuneup because it won't hurt anything. I'd try plugs, wires, air filter, PCV, etc. Also if you can clean the throttle body pick up a can of thottle body cleaner. It's inexpensive and could be helpful if you have high mileage. One thing you need to be aware of though is to make sure you don't have something locking up like an A/C compressor that unsticks at a certain engine RPM. I've ran into that before where it didn't make any noise and chased my tail for hours trying to find it.
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Old 06-18-2007
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Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Willard OH
Posts: 489
I agree with the others, tune up can't hurt anything. My truck too also slow on acceleration, it's just a 4banger automatic so I've learned to just roll with it and be patient. Try the tune up routine and see if that helps extract some more power. Also, before you do a tune up, do a seafoam job through the brake booster hose to clean out any junk in the engine. That way, if you foul out a plug, your putting in new plugs anyway. -Mike-
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Old 06-20-2007
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Tacoma, WA
Posts: 45
I suggest checking the timing too. When I replaced my timing belt in the parking lot I got a couple teeth off because I forgot to tension it properly and it was really sluggish. Once I got to my shop and corrected the problem, it ran great.
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