80 vanagon high idle, lagging power, failed smog

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SlowLane
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Re: 80 vanagon high idle, lagging power, failed smog

Post by SlowLane » Wed Oct 08, 2014 7:41 pm

Latest post of the previous page:

bosco53 wrote: The only thing I can say for sure is really "wrong" with it at this point is that it struggles to start cold. (Remember "cold" is a loose term as I do live in San Diego and we are wrapping up another gnarly heat wave.) Its probably the CSV but I haven't had any time at all to pop the engine hatch. And I wont be able to get to it until after the 14th as I will be in San Fran for the next week.
I suspect that your recalcitrant cold-start is more likely to be an Auxiliary Air Regulator (AAR) issue than a CSV issue. Colin has an excellent writeup somewhere around here on the AAR and how to adjust it for maximum effectiveness. Taking out the AAR also gives you an excellent opportunity to examine the treacherous AAR elbow for hidden cracks and splits.
'81 Canadian Westfalia (2.0L, manual), now Californiated

"Wisdom comes from experience. Experience is often a result of lack of wisdom."
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Re: 80 vanagon high idle, lagging power, failed smog

Post by bosco53 » Tue Nov 18, 2014 4:59 pm

Ok, finally back for more...fun? Sorry it has been so long. I could go on and on about life and having a child with a super rare syndrome and work and yada yada but I know thats not what we are here for. I digress...

I've been living with my hard start issue for a while now along with my pathetic power and horrible gas mileage. I figured out that if I crank it over a few times in the morning about 15 minutes before I actually need to leave it fires right up. So with that, as long as I know what this silly wonder slugs quirks are and how to handle them then I can live with it for a little bit at least.

I pulled the sparks plugs as suggestion and here is what I found...I think I'm lean overall but how can I be lean and getting 12 MPG?!?

Cyl #1
Image

Cyl #2
Image

Cyl #3
Image

Cyl #4
Image

I also did a compression test and cylinder #1 (which also happens to be the only one that looks slightly darker than the rest) was also about 10-20 PSI lower than the other three. Cylinders 2-4 were 130-135 PSI and #1 was about 115 PSI. Is that enough to warrant attention? I'm afraid of that answer. :pale:

I also pulled out the AAR. Gave it a good cleaning and stuck it in the freezer. It was already open when I took it off, the van hadn't run all day and the ambient temp was around 68*. After being in the freezer for 10 minutes or so it opened up dramatically more. I stuck it back in and proceeded to start the van. (I took a video thinking it wouldn't start again but it pretty much fired right up) Not sure if thats because it's later in the day or because the AAR was opened wider?

Anyways, if it helps here are a couple videos of the engine starting, running cold, then running warmed up. If it doesnt help, just say so and I'll delete them. Thanks again!

Starting...
http://vid73.photobucket.com/albums/i24 ... 82r8yw.mp4

Running cold...
http://vid73.photobucket.com/albums/i24 ... tktxyd.mp4

Running warm...
http://vid73.photobucket.com/albums/i24 ... tmz8nw.mp4
1980 VW Westfalia Air cooled and full of piss and vinegar

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Amskeptic
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Re: 80 vanagon high idle, lagging power, failed smog

Post by Amskeptic » Tue Nov 18, 2014 6:16 pm

bosco53 wrote:Ok, finally back for more...fun? Sorry it has been so long. I could go on and on about life and having a child with a super rare syndrome and work and yada yada but I know thats not what we are here for. I digress...
We do digressions here. See, actually, our VWs are the digression, the vehicle for human community. We have dealt with a number of life events around here. General Chat is good for sharing super rare syndromes, and Free Speech is good for those moments when All This needs a good vent.
bosco53 wrote: I've been living with my hard start issue for a while now along with my pathetic power and horrible gas mileage.
I think I'm lean overall but how can I be lean and getting 12 MPG?!?
Remember this?
Are they white at the ceramic under the center electrode?
Are they black around the metal shell that has the ground electrode?
Leanish but good

Are they tan at the ceramic under the center electrode?
Are they black around the metal shell that has the ground electrode?
Good maybe richish
The plugs look fine. Your acceleration is pretty . . . . laggard.

The videos all seem typical really of a middle-aged engine, maybe a little carbon build-up is taking cold enrichment from you (absorbs fuel vapor like charcoal briquets).

Warm idle is good, yes? Were your emission results high on the CO but reasonable on the HCs?
Colin
BobD - 1978 Bus . . . . . . . . . . .111,130 miles
Chloe - 1970 bus . . . . . . . . . . . 206,787 miles
Naranja - 1977 Westfalia . . . . . 94,615 miles
Pluck - 1973 Squareback . . . . . 55,510 miles
Alexus - 1991 Lexus LS400 . . . 72,990 miles

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Re: 80 vanagon high idle, lagging power, failed smog

Post by bosco53 » Tue Nov 18, 2014 8:14 pm

Amskeptic wrote:
We do digressions here. See, actually, our VWs are the digression, the vehicle for human community. We have dealt with a number of life events around here. General Chat is good for sharing super rare syndromes, and Free Speech is good for those moments when All This needs a good vent.
Thanks man. It's easy to forget how good a little community can be for the soul.
Amskeptic wrote: Remember this?
Are they white at the ceramic under the center electrode?
Are they black around the metal shell that has the ground electrode?
Leanish but good

Are they tan at the ceramic under the center electrode?
Are they black around the metal shell that has the ground electrode?
Good maybe richish
That was the reason I looked at the plugs. :thumbleft:

Amskeptic wrote: The plugs look fine. Your acceleration is pretty . . . . laggard.

The videos all seem typical really of a middle-aged engine, maybe a little carbon build-up is taking cold enrichment from you (absorbs fuel vapor like charcoal briquets).

Warm idle is good, yes? Were your emission results high on the CO but reasonable on the HCs?
Colin
I cant seem to locate my final smog results when I passed. The CO's were ZERO and Im pretty sure the HC's were very low as well. I passed with flying colors.

Does any of this explain or hint to the cause of my terrible gas mileage? Should I do some more fiddling with the AFM? I did run some seafoam through the motor before passing smog but I never got ANY smoke to come out the tailpipe? When I used to do this on my old Toyotas they spewed soot like steam powered locomotive! I've been trying to figure out the exact circumstances but, every now and then it seems to run remarkably well. But more often then not it sucks. Power wise anyways. Fuel economy is always bad. The best I've gotten is 13MPG.
1980 VW Westfalia Air cooled and full of piss and vinegar

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Re: 80 vanagon high idle, lagging power, failed smog

Post by Amskeptic » Wed Nov 19, 2014 8:24 am

bosco53 wrote:I've been trying to figure out the exact circumstances but, every now and then it seems to run remarkably well. But more often then not it sucks. Power wise anyways. Fuel economy is always bad. The best I've gotten is 13MPG.
Remember that the benchmark is 16.7 mpg. You are closing in.

http://www.fuelly.com/car/volkswagen/vanagon

Every now and then it seems to run remarkably well in what category?
Power?
Starting?
Driveability?

To perform a diagnostic fuel economy test, inflate tires to 45 rear 40 front if you have the correctly rated tires, write down your odometer reading, fill gas tank (slowly as it gets full) only to the first click-off of the pump dispensor, then drive for a about a half tank. Write down your odometer reading, fill gas tank (slowly at the end) to first click-off and divide miles driven by gallons taken.
Here's my last log entry 130/7.7 that equals, by the way 16.9 mpg with my little 1600cc 1970 bus.
Colin
BobD - 1978 Bus . . . . . . . . . . .111,130 miles
Chloe - 1970 bus . . . . . . . . . . . 206,787 miles
Naranja - 1977 Westfalia . . . . . 94,615 miles
Pluck - 1973 Squareback . . . . . 55,510 miles
Alexus - 1991 Lexus LS400 . . . 72,990 miles

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Re: 80 vanagon high idle, lagging power, failed smog

Post by bosco53 » Wed Nov 19, 2014 9:00 am

Amskeptic wrote:
Remember that the benchmark is 16.7 mpg. You are closing in.

http://www.fuelly.com/car/volkswagen/vanagon

Every now and then it seems to run remarkably well in what category?
Power?
Starting?
Driveability?

To perform a diagnostic fuel economy test, inflate tires to 45 rear 40 front if you have the correctly rated tires, write down your odometer reading, fill gas tank (slowly as it gets full) only to the first click-off of the pump dispensor, then drive for a about a half tank. Write down your odometer reading, fill gas tank (slowly at the end) to first click-off and divide miles driven by gallons taken.
Here's my last log entry 130/7.7 that equals, by the way 16.9 mpg with my little 1600cc 1970 bus.
Colin
Well, to test it that accurately I'm gonna need to fix my gas gauge. :pale: I usually just calculate by dividing miles driven by gas used. Last fill up was 160/12.6 = 12.6

By running well I guess I mean drivability. I think it's when I let it sit for a good warm up but can't say for certain. On these occasions it just "feels" better. Ya know? It seems to be smoother, running a little quieter, maybe a hair more response in the power realm. It just feels happy. The thing that really makes it a bear is that the smallest incline zaps my highway speed in an instant. Maybe this is all normal? I did coincidentally converge on the freeway the other day with 2 other Westy's. One was a Bay window and the other was water cooled Vanagon. I passed the Bay with ease and kept up with the water cooled Westy. Is it normal to hit even the smallest of grades and go from 60-65 down to 45-50? If so then ok. I guess I'll need to get used to this new paradigm until I can save enough pennies for a new power plant.

Also, as of this morning, messing with the AAR did nothing for my cold start issue. So where to look now? :scratch:
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Re: 80 vanagon high idle, lagging power, failed smog

Post by Amskeptic » Wed Nov 19, 2014 9:12 am

bosco53 wrote: Well, to test it that accurately I'm gonna need to fix my gas gauge. :pale:
I usually just calculate by dividing miles driven by gas used. Last fill up was 160/12.6 = 12.6
Excuse me? I made no mention of any gas gauge.
And your "usual calculation" is exactly what I just wrote.
So, we are on the same page but missing by a mile . . . :blackeye:

bosco53 wrote: By running well I guess I mean drivability.
The thing that really makes it a bear is that the smallest incline zaps my highway speed in an instant. Maybe this is all normal? I did coincidentally converge on the freeway the other day with 2 other Westy's. One was a Bay window and the other was water cooled Vanagon.
I passed the Bay with ease and kept up with the water cooled Westy. Is it normal to hit even the smallest of grades and go from 60-65 down to 45-50? If so then ok. I guess I'll need to get used to this new paradigm until I can save enough pennies for a new power plant.
Sounds pretty normal, and if you passed the bay with ease, it better have been an early bay . . .
Looking for a new powerplant or looking for a new way to greet the highway madness.
There is no hurry in Real Life.
bosco53 wrote: Also, as of this morning, messing with the AAR did nothing for my cold start issue. So where to look now? :scratch:
What sort of mess did you mess with? Your initial start followed by a stall/almost stall is almost normal for a middle-aged engine. It is asking for more air at initial start. You might not be getting it because of opened up valve guides, aforementioned carbon build-up, and your 110 #1 cylinder. Has it actually stranded you at any point?
(what is your daily driver?)
Colin
BobD - 1978 Bus . . . . . . . . . . .111,130 miles
Chloe - 1970 bus . . . . . . . . . . . 206,787 miles
Naranja - 1977 Westfalia . . . . . 94,615 miles
Pluck - 1973 Squareback . . . . . 55,510 miles
Alexus - 1991 Lexus LS400 . . . 72,990 miles

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Re: 80 vanagon high idle, lagging power, failed smog

Post by bosco53 » Wed Nov 19, 2014 12:51 pm

Amskeptic wrote:
Excuse me? I made no mention of any gas gauge.
And your "usual calculation" is exactly what I just wrote.
So, we are on the same page but missing by a mile . . . :blackeye:
:pirate: Haha! Well I was under the impression "driving about a half tank" had something to do with it. By running it dry I know where that is approximately by mileage but not by a gauge. We are good though! Same page!


Amskeptic wrote: Sounds pretty normal, and if you passed the bay with ease, it better have been an early bay . . .
Looking for a new powerplant or looking for a new way to greet the highway madness.
There is no hurry in Real Life.
Agreed. The powerplant is desired for getting into the mountains and long road trips. Like I said, maybe I just need a paradigm shift? It is difficult to not feel the hurry in SoCal.

Amskeptic wrote:
What sort of mess did you mess with? Your initial start followed by a stall/almost stall is almost normal for a middle-aged engine. It is asking for more air at initial start. You might not be getting it because of opened up valve guides, aforementioned carbon build-up, and your 110 #1 cylinder. Has it actually stranded you at any point?
(what is your daily driver?)
Colin
I just pulled it and cleaned it out as per your sticky thread regarding the AAR. The start and stumble in the video was unexpected. I expected it wouldn't start at all like usual. So I am thinking it either started because it was later in the day or because the AAR was wider open after being in the freezer. Nonetheless this morning it did not start, like usual. The only time I was left stranded was when I ran the tank dry after a seafoam treatment and burned the fuel pump/air locked the fuel line. It's never let me down otherwise.

The van is technically my DD but I try to bike to work as much as possible. I make sure my girls are well taken care of in their new fangled 2014 Ford Fusion Hybrid. :flower:
1980 VW Westfalia Air cooled and full of piss and vinegar

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Re: 80 vanagon high idle, lagging power, failed smog

Post by Amskeptic » Wed Nov 19, 2014 3:09 pm

Amskeptic wrote:
bosco53 wrote:The powerplant is desired for getting into the mountains and long road trips. Like I said, maybe I just need a paradigm shift? It is difficult to not feel the hurry in SoCal.
Having lived in and commuted in Los Angeles for twelve years, I owned and drove BMWs, Mercedes, a Porsche 911, my '73 bay the Road Warrior, and a new '89 Vanagon GL. Then I moved to rural upstate New York. Then I came back through modern Los Angeles in 2011, 2012 and 2013 in my current Type 1 baywindow. I learned a few things:

1. Southern California drivers are better than most
2. If you acknowledge drivers coming up on you by a slight veer to the right so they can see ahead of you easier, they appreciate it
3. Ignore All Emotion
4. Enjoy the remarkable scenery around you (I-8 and I-15 from San Diego go through remarkable terrain)
5. Stay within the capabilities of your car and its lack of stress becomes your lack of stress

I found that hurrying a BMW or MB on socal freeways was *no more fun* than driving a bay in the day on planet Earth.
bosco53 wrote: Nonetheless this morning it did not start, like usual.
The van is technically my DD but I try to bike to work as much as possible. I make sure my girls are well taken care of in their new fangled 2014 Ford Fusion Hybrid. :flower:
Have you tried little tricks for the first start of the day?
Like 1/4 second after engaging the starter, punch down on the accelerator and release?

We at Itinerant Air-Cooled send you you our deepest sympathy for owning a Ford product. If there is anything we can do to help mitigate the pain coughcough just coughcoughcough call.
Colin :cherry:
BobD - 1978 Bus . . . . . . . . . . .111,130 miles
Chloe - 1970 bus . . . . . . . . . . . 206,787 miles
Naranja - 1977 Westfalia . . . . . 94,615 miles
Pluck - 1973 Squareback . . . . . 55,510 miles
Alexus - 1991 Lexus LS400 . . . 72,990 miles

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Re: 80 vanagon high idle, lagging power, failed smog

Post by bosco53 » Wed Nov 19, 2014 9:39 pm

Amskeptic wrote:
Having lived in and commuted in Los Angeles for twelve years, I owned and drove BMWs, Mercedes, a Porsche 911, my '73 bay the Road Warrior, and a new '89 Vanagon GL. Then I moved to rural upstate New York. Then I came back through modern Los Angeles in 2011, 2012 and 2013 in my current Type 1 baywindow. I learned a few things:

1. Southern California drivers are better than most
2. If you acknowledge drivers coming up on you by a slight veer to the right so they can see ahead of you easier, they appreciate it
3. Ignore All Emotion
4. Enjoy the remarkable scenery around you (I-8 and I-15 from San Diego go through remarkable terrain)
5. Stay within the capabilities of your car and its lack of stress becomes your lack of stress

I found that hurrying a BMW or MB on socal freeways was *no more fun* than driving a bay in the day on planet Earth.
I grew up on the central coast of California where the major highway (101) is merely 2 lanes and the rest are all winding country roads. I joined the Navy in 2003 and have been all over the east and west coasts as well as Hawaii.

1. I agree SoCal drivers are better than most albeit crazy!
2. Good tip. Thanks! I am a little tired of looking in my rear view with the pucker factor nearing 11 as another giant SUV barely moves over in the nick of time!
3. A lesson I am constantly trying to learn.
4. I was also making the commute from Temecula to San Diego for the past 2 years since I finally got stationed near home and bought a house. The scenery is in fact amazing along the 15 and out I-8. One thing that kept me sane (I also just drove to Phoenix twice in the last week)
5. My biggest complaint is the lack of acceleration, and the loss of speed on hills. Guess I better get over it.

I have to admit that more often than not I LOVE not being able to keep up with the rat race on the freeways. There's something so...zen about it. :happy3:
Amskeptic wrote: Have you tried little tricks for the first start of the day?
Like 1/4 second after engaging the starter, punch down on the accelerator and release?
I have stomped on the skinny pedal while attempting to start it. No go. If I push it too far it just starts flooding. The only trick I have so far is to crank it a few times and then go back 15 minutes later. Then it fires right up. Thats all fine and dandy as long as I can plan and prep.
Amskeptic wrote: We at Itinerant Air-Cooled send you you our deepest sympathy for owning a Ford product. If there is anything we can do to help mitigate the pain coughcough just coughcoughcough call.
Colin :cherry:
Now thats funny!!! In all honesty, for a Ford, it is a surprisingly good car. My wife's happy so I'm happy. I just don't like making payments. :compress:
1980 VW Westfalia Air cooled and full of piss and vinegar

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Re: 80 vanagon high idle, lagging power, failed smog

Post by Amskeptic » Thu Nov 20, 2014 8:28 pm

bosco53 wrote: I have stomped on the skinny pedal while attempting to start it. No go. If I push it too far it just starts flooding. The only trick I have so far is to crank it a few times and then go back 15 minutes later. Then it fires right up. Thats all fine and dandy as long as I can plan and prep.
Try this:
First start where you expect it won't - put accelerator to floor immediately upon entering vehicle. Leave there. Try to start engine. Report back.
(if it starts, release the damn thing pronto, so you don't get excessive revs)
Colin
BobD - 1978 Bus . . . . . . . . . . .111,130 miles
Chloe - 1970 bus . . . . . . . . . . . 206,787 miles
Naranja - 1977 Westfalia . . . . . 94,615 miles
Pluck - 1973 Squareback . . . . . 55,510 miles
Alexus - 1991 Lexus LS400 . . . 72,990 miles

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Re: 80 vanagon high idle, lagging power, failed smog

Post by bosco53 » Thu Nov 20, 2014 9:08 pm

Amskeptic wrote:
Try this:
First start where you expect it won't - put accelerator to floor immediately upon entering vehicle. Leave there. Try to start engine. Report back.
(if it starts, release the damn thing pronto, so you don't get excessive revs)
Colin
Ok, I just went out and tried it. Haven't started the van since Wednesday. Low and behold it fired right up! I'll be sold on the idea though, if it does it again in the morning.

Does this tell you anything Jedi Master? :rr:
Bryan
1980 VW Westfalia Air cooled and full of piss and vinegar

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Re: 80 vanagon high idle, lagging power, failed smog

Post by Amskeptic » Thu Nov 20, 2014 9:51 pm

bosco53 wrote:
Amskeptic wrote:
Try this:
First start where you expect it won't - put accelerator to floor immediately upon entering vehicle. Leave there. Try to start engine. Report back.
(if it starts, release the damn thing pronto, so you don't get excessive revs)
Colin
Ok, I just went out and tried it. Haven't started the van since Wednesday. Low and behold it fired right up! I'll be sold on the idea though, if it does it again in the morning.

Does this tell you anything Jedi Master? :rr:
Bryan
Yes.

I'll expand upon The Idea tomorrow after your next test . . .
Colinfucious
BobD - 1978 Bus . . . . . . . . . . .111,130 miles
Chloe - 1970 bus . . . . . . . . . . . 206,787 miles
Naranja - 1977 Westfalia . . . . . 94,615 miles
Pluck - 1973 Squareback . . . . . 55,510 miles
Alexus - 1991 Lexus LS400 . . . 72,990 miles

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Re: 80 vanagon high idle, lagging power, failed smog

Post by bosco53 » Fri Nov 21, 2014 10:28 am

Amskeptic wrote:
Yes.

I'll expand upon The Idea tomorrow after your next test . . .
Colinfucious

Well call me a monkey's uncle. Fired right up again this morning. Do expand oh mighty Colinfucious! :notworthy:
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Re: 80 vanagon high idle, lagging power, failed smog

Post by Amskeptic » Fri Nov 21, 2014 6:24 pm

bosco53 wrote:
Amskeptic wrote:
Yes.

I'll expand upon The Idea tomorrow after your next test . . .
Colinfucious

Well call me a monkey's uncle. Fired right up again this morning. Do expand oh mighty Colinfucious! :notworthy:
Cold start is a little rich. You are adding needed air.
Colin
BobD - 1978 Bus . . . . . . . . . . .111,130 miles
Chloe - 1970 bus . . . . . . . . . . . 206,787 miles
Naranja - 1977 Westfalia . . . . . 94,615 miles
Pluck - 1973 Squareback . . . . . 55,510 miles
Alexus - 1991 Lexus LS400 . . . 72,990 miles

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Re: 80 vanagon high idle, lagging power, failed smog

Post by bosco53 » Sun Nov 23, 2014 10:04 am

Well apparently the wonder slug has a sense of humor. The last two mornings it has gone to its old ways of not wanting to start. It still starts quicker than it did but it takes 4-7 attempts with the pedal floored. Then more often than not if I let it sit to idle it will die if I don't mind the throttle.

So, should I just pull the cold start and see if it's leaking? Or is there another way to address my lack of air/too much fuel?

Bryan
1980 VW Westfalia Air cooled and full of piss and vinegar

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