El Camino Central Forum banner

1 - 20 of 20 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
68 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
To start off, this is my first El Camino, (a 1983), and I no nothing of how to fix cars. I am however, looking to learn. This '83 I just bought had work done on it, and as it turns out, may need more done.

The car seems to idle oddly. At times, it will idle at 1,000 RPM's if I'm sitting at a stop light, but when I park the car, it will rev up to 1,500 or 2,000 RPM's as if I'm stepping on the accelerator. At other times, the oil pressure will drop, and when I sit at a light then, the car will idle at 600-750 RPMs. The problem here is that when I get on the highway, its as if it won't shift into that next gear, as when I'm doing 50+ mph, the RPM's will be at 3,000.

I'm worried I'm going to burn out the engine if this keeps up. I'm told it could be anything from the idle, which seems unlikely with the way it jumps back and forth between problems, to a vacuum problem, or even a timing belt. Please help!

-El
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
846 Posts
no timing belt in that car...
could be carb related, vacuum related..
The oil press will drop when the RPMs do...
Will need a little more info to get to the bottom of your concerns...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
68 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
What other things should I be looking out for to give you guys more info? If vacuum is a problem, is that a quick fix?
 

·
Deputy Director Supporting Member
Joined
·
2,247 Posts
Yes, vacuum line check is easy

Vacuum lines, if they've never been replaced, are almost certainly dried and cracked on your 30-year-old El Camino. Check all, and I mean ALL, vacuum lines, especially those around heat like the intake and exhaust manifolds. That might be a start. A vacuum line that's leaking will create erratic idle and rpm jumps, etc.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
68 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Thanks for the welcome and...

I will check those lines promptly. Appreciate the help!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,348 Posts
There may be a vacuum line diagram posted on a sticker under your hood. However, lots of modifications get made over the years to vacuum lines, so you want to be sure they're run the best possible way.

Is your ECM still hooked up? If so, follow the original diagram. If not, it may take some modification.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,205 Posts
Post some pics and we may be able to point you in the right direction. Welcome from Oklahoma
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
68 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
I have no clue what an ECM is. I haven't had a chance to get under the hood since I last posted. I did manage to clean the car up, however. Also got a Chilton's manual to help me out with my lack of knowledge. Just need to figure out where vacuum lines are...

Thanks for the welcome!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
68 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
Also...

What kind of gas mileage should I be looking for? I did the math, and I'm averaging just over 13 miles per gallon.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
12,122 Posts
First, the ECM is the Engine Control Module, the little computer that adjusts engine parameters, like ignition timing, and fuel mixture from your electronic carb, among other things.
The post about vacuum lines is important.....lots of un-necessary parts have been sold to people who only needed some new vac hoses. You can change them one at a time, to make sure you put them back on correctly & don't mix up where they go.
You mentioned something about it not shifting right....don't know if your transmission has a vacuum modulator, but it's worth checking the hoses on that also if it has one.
 

·
Venerated Member RIP
Joined
·
4,461 Posts
Old "Hick trick from the sticks in Texas"
Start the car, after warm-up take a can of WD-40 with the little hose on the end and LIGHTLY spray around the carb and intake, if idle changes there's a leak.
Of course this only works on pre 'puter controlled cars 'cause the 'puter will try to compensate for idle.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
231 Posts
had similar problem,everytime i touched,unplugged,move the lines they would crack or i would see cracks,slits in them.i replaced most of them and my el did idle/run better.also used some 2 + 2 and cleaned the carb. these members offer tons of help and info. good lick
 

·
ZERO MPG
Joined
·
15,367 Posts
I had the same problem it was the carb. had it rebuilt and it fixed that problem then look for vacuum leaks. go to Mountain man fuel systems in AK. he's the best.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
37 Posts
Not shifting problem - could simply be vacumn hose on the tranny - had a 78 that I thought I had tranny problems with no shifting -- simple $1 piece of vacumn hose on tranny and it solved the problem - easy to check --- right on plain sight on tranny and easy to replace --- or put back on if it popped off.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
201 Posts
The hard plastic vacuum lines to your heater/AC system can give you lots of trouble too, they get brittle from heat and age.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,348 Posts
One thing we do when we train over the road truck drivers is to give them a quiz on the two-letter abbreviations for the states. AK is Alaska. AR is Arkansas. AL is Alabama. AZ is Arizona. Yes, those and the M's give people a lot of trouble.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
68 Posts
Discussion Starter #20
New Pics, But...

Sorry its been a while. Been working. I have pics of my carb, but I can't post any attachments on this site yet. After having a friend look at my car, we've noticed that the automatic choke on the carb seems to stay open on its own, and we can't figure out why. Any ideas on how to post pics so I can show you guys? Thanks!
 
1 - 20 of 20 Posts
Top