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Discussion Starter #1
I went and washed down the engine compartment yesterday evening, and the El Camino started stalling, a lot.

Today it ran fairly well until I got the oil changed and the radiator flushed, then the stalling got bad. It finally died, and while it will run and idle (sometimes), it stalls immediately if you put it in gear. Backfiring. All the fun stuff.

I'm going to guess it's the distributor. What's your guess?
 

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Probably has water in the distributor. Take the cap off and take a look. A little compressed air or WD-40 or wire dryer should take care of it.
 
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I think you wet the dizzy cap. Why did the car come with an extra carb?
 

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The engine is not supposed to look good..unless your driving a trailer queen.
Never run water over electronics..especially if you have a computer.
You'll notice all the new cars have plastic covers trying to prevent water from shorting everything out.
The engine does the work,and should look like it.:nanawrench:
 

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Discussion Starter #5
If I had a dime for every engine I've washed, well...I'd have a bunch of dimes.

However, the distributor was clean and dry. Now I'm thinking a clogged fuel filter or dirt in the carbon. Is there any fuel filters other than the one in the carbon inlet?
 

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i wash mine every month, the plastic covers are for looks only .the connectors used on modern cars are weatherpak sealed connectors you can run water on them all day with no shorting unless the seal is damaged. you can crack the cap or plugs with water,or the water can find a bad wire and give you issues.cleaning the engine will show up something soft in the first place. i prefer a clean engine over a dirty one
 

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The distributor was clean and dry inside? That's where it really matters. No moisture on the inside of the cap or the rotor?
I might think whoever did oil change and radiator flush knocked something loose but you say it did it before that work was done and right after you wet it down.
 

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I like a clean engine too. dry the inside of the cap. check your wires.
 

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How come smart phones aren't---darn they cause a lot of mis-communication...anyway, I much prefer a clean engine to work on plus it makes it a lot easier to diagnose several issues, like where the oil or water leak is coming from. Like others have said moisture on the inside of the distributor cap is the most likely cause and to make matters worse there is probably some water just laying in the bottom of the distributor just waiting for enough heat to become steam to do it to you again after you dry the cap the first time---LOL....don't be surprised to have to dry the cap a couple times....Dan
 

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Discussion Starter #12
The more I think about it the more it feels to me like gasoline starvation. That would explain why it starts and idles fairly well for a while and then starts to idle poorly. Why it stalls when I put it in gear.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I'm not at home. I can't check it till tomorrow. I didn't put any filter in.

Again, Is there more than one filter on the system? Or just the one in thr carburetor?
 

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There is some kind of sock in the tank at the pick -up but unless someone has added a filter there is only the one. Could your fuel pump be going out, just a thought
 

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It's a carb inlet, attacked by a smart phone' autocorrect.
Funny, ain't technology great? :poke:

Ted, at Mountain Man Fuel Systems told me that sometimes the rubber gasket in the carb's filter will swell up (newer fuels with ethanol) and it can limit the fuel flow.

Also, is there any sign of seepage at the bottom of the fuel pump? One of the signs that fuel pump is flakey or headed that way.

Good luck :beer:
 

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Discussion Starter #17
When I google "1986 El Camino fuel filter," I get a carb inlet filter and what looks like an inline filter like you usually see on the frame.
 

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I would think the one on the frame is for fuel injection.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Did any 1986 have fuel injection?

At any rate, I need to pull that carb filter out tomorrow when I get home.
 

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The 4.3 6 cyl was throttle body. That is the sending unit everyone is always looking for but is a toughy.
 
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