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Old 07-25-2014, 05:12 PM   #1
mcjohnson972
 
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Post 1987 Hardbody - Motor Loses Power

My 87 Nissan (one owner) well taken care of truck is dying for some reason as I drive. It happens frequently now. I thought it was the fuel filter or pump but changed both of them. I also changed the alternator, spark plugs, distributor cap, battery and the O2 sensor on the exhaust. The truck runs great when it runs, but will fail (generally on the freeway) as if it is not getting any more gas to the motor and dies.

If I wait on the side of the road for 5 minutes, it will start up again and run fine (until it happens again).

What could be failing? I have no more ideas.
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Old 07-25-2014, 06:32 PM   #2
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The first thing you should try is pulling the codes. If there is a code stored, then the ECU is doing stuff to the engine.

However, the ECU does not generally shut the engine off. It usually goes into a limp mode.

If it is dying but recranks, then you could have wires that are getting too hot.

Also, your alternator could be putting out the wrong voltage. That could be causing the wires to get too hot, or it could cause power loss at injectors.

Next time you are on Beltline Road, swing into O'Reilly's and have them test your alternator.
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Old 07-26-2014, 12:19 AM   #3
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I had the alternator checked. It is putting out 14.02 volts. Is that good or bad?

Also wondering if it could be my Fuel Pump Relay and/or my IAC needs to be cleaned but I can't find the thing on my truck to clean it. If you know where the IAC is located on an 87 Nissan Hardbody, I'd appreciate the info. Thank you.

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Old 07-26-2014, 12:56 AM   #4
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It should be the same as what the 1989 Service Manual shows. Look for A.I.V. Control.

If you haven't yet, go there and download it for free. There is a section on how to test it starting on EF & EC-194.

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Old 07-26-2014, 01:00 AM   #5
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Oh, and "wires getting hot" would be any wires with electricity running through them.

When the conductors inside them get hot, they do not conduct as well. Look for wires that are near something that would be getting things too hot.
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Old 07-29-2014, 04:53 PM   #6
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back in the day, the Z's,Maxi's had a trig (ignition unit) on the side of the dizzy(moved to the inside) the connection would heat up,expand and break the connection, let it cool down and it would fire right back up.. it didnt happen very much on the HB's
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Old 07-29-2014, 05:07 PM   #7
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Seems like I had a several problems working against me. One is that there are two IACs on my truck, not just one. I cleaned one but not the other. The secondary one had carbon build up on it (but not much). Also, I disconnected the EGR Valve (have no idea if this was bad or not however) and lastly I zipped-tied my spark plug wires up and away from the hot exhaust manifold. Seems like all of these things together have resolved the problem of the truck dying unexpectedly (at least for the last two days so far).
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