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Ford Truck Club Forum > FORD F-100 | F-150 SERIES > 1973-1991 Ford F150

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Old July 13th, 2019, 09:24 AM
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Damienr6 Damienr6 is offline

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Default California smog woes

Hey all, Iím new to this forum, Iím having trouble smogging my 89 F150 4.9 w/2WD. It has 115K or so. My vacuum calibration is 8-51R-ROO, tranny is M50D-R2. I went to get my truck smogged and it failed the idle test. HCís were extremely high at idle 1755 (max 120) CO was also high at 6.80 (max 1.00) it did perfectly fine at 2500 rpms. The tech said he thought it was the catalytic converters or the injectors. But the injectors are new, I also used a screwdriver and a stethoscope to check them, they sound fine. Compression is great, all cylinders are at 180 or so at 5 cranks. I did what I could to test the cats, they donít rattle, and donít seemed to be clogged according to the vacuum test in the Haynes manual. I hate to just throw money at new cats. I was thinking about trying to soak them in citric acid. Iíve tested everything else I can think of. I have almost all new motorcraft sensors and egr valve, etc. Iíve cleaned the throttle body and IAC, and tested the IAC. I tested plug wires and got new plugs. I donít know what else it could be. The idle does seem a little funky. Like the EEC is trying to stabilize the idle. It seems to slowly bounce around a bit between 600 and 750. I did notice the muffler has a leak around the pipe where itís welded around the muffler inlet. It looks like it got weak and broke all the way around the connection to the sheet metal. Could that mess up the cats? It really doesnít seem to have any other symptoms of a bad cat. No loss of power of anything. Idle is only slightly unusual, I donít know if itís that bad or not. If anyone has any advice Iíd much appreciate it. A Magnaflow direct fit is over $600. I know I at least need another muffler, or to get my old one fixed. Thanks for your help
Old July 13th, 2019, 11:26 AM
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Any EEC codes?

2003 F-150 XL RCSB 2wd 4.2 5 speed 3.55 LS
Old July 14th, 2019, 05:52 AM
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After I failed my first smog inspection, I checked codes and one came up during engine idling test. It was for a low engine coolant temp sensor reading. I remembered I had an aftermarket sensor I didn’t trust in there, and replaced it with a motorcraft. I cleared the code and I figured that was my issue. I went to get smogged, and I had to go to a star smog center because I was flagged as a gross polluter. I told the tech that I fixed the issue, but he said he really didn’t think an ect sensor would cause HC’s quite so high. He did me a favor and just stuck the sniffer in the tail pipe without actually running the smog check. The emissions at idle weren’t initially too high to pass, but they were bouncing around. They would be within acceptable range for a few seconds and then jump way up, then back down. The tech said he thought it was my cats or a fuel issue, probably injectors, but my injectors are 2 years old, with 10K miles. He said cats, but they just don’t seem clogged to me. I did notice today that my rusted muffler was camouflaging a whole bunch of holes. They’re small but yeah there’s a lot. I ordered a new muffler online, dusted off my welding stuff, and I almost have my cats off to soak in citric/ oxalic acid for a couple days. I gotta take my trans cross beam out to get that beast out. They’re welded way inline of everything so I can’t actually see the element of the primary cat. But... maybe an acid soak and new muffler will get me smogged.
Old July 14th, 2019, 08:39 AM
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wow I had no idea people go through this we don't have that here in Florida that's crazy.

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Old October 5th, 2019, 08:09 AM
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Sounds like the truck is running rich. Do you have a tune in the truck? How far did you drive the truck before the test? you may have to drive 10 miles to make sure everything is up to temperature before the test. You didn't mention air filter. It has to be clean. It could mean that the computer is dumping to much fuel. Does the exhaust smell rich?

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