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Car Dies Suddenly, but will start back up after about 10 minutes

1440 Views 6 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  Jess1313
Hi everyone,
I ran into some trouble with my 1989 Mustang GT while driving about 50 miles last week. I drove from my house out onto the freeway and about 50 miles to Santa Fe, I stopped there for lunch and then started the drive back. While on the way back at a stop light before I got onto the freeway the engine just stopped, no jerking so puttering, just stopped.I tried starting it again (I can hear the pump prime when i turn it to "on"), the engine would turn over (plenty of power to the starter) but absolutely no go, it wouldnt putter or anything jsut crank crank crank. I finally pushed it to the side of the road and after about 10 min it just jumped right to life, fired up really quick, and there was no lack of power, no jerking or anything. I got onto the freeway and then on the way back while driving it just stopped again while going about 75. No engine lights turned on but no acceleration and if I pushed in the clutch then engine dropped right to 0, and the engine light would come on. If i released the clutch it would jump back up in RPM but felt like no spark or fuel, it drifted like this to a complete stop again, and just like before no surging or jerking just rolled to a stop... this continued like this all the way home, about 20 minutes of driving followed by 10 min of waiting.

All the gauges looked normal, it had no problems turning over the starter and there was no jerking or surging.

I just last month replaced the pump, filter, plugs wires cap and rotor, and cleaned the filter. so im kinda lost on what the issue would be...

Anyone have any ideas on a good place the start looking for the problem? Im not made of money so im trying to isolate the issue as close as possible.

Thanks in advance.

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It sounds like your TFI module on your distributor. They heat up open a circuit then when it cools down it reconnects like a thermal circuit breaker. It is a typical malfunction that is why Ford remote mounted them on later cars and trucks. Tom
So I looked up TFI failures online and that sounds very similar to what im seeing (Thank You Tom). So I looked up a replacement TFI from the local auto parts store (Oreiley), and they have 4 or 5 different ones ranging from 35 bucks for the "Master Pro" to 125 for the motorcraft, has anyone seen any issues with the aftermarkets that would justify the price of the motorcraft?
Get a Motorcraft. The aftermarket ones are Communist Chinese JUNK.

I don't recall them being that pricey, though. Last time I looked up the price for one, it was in the $70 range. I guess the price went up.
Motorkraft or one from Davis Unified Ignition, I've had good luck with those. Use plenty/all of the grease that comes with the unit when installing.
As stated above, most likely the TFI - definately get a Motorcraft unless you want to do this again soon. But a bad hall effect has exactly the same symptoms. Since I'd already had the TFI replaced by Ford (was on the road - no tools and too far to tow), I took it back to the same dealer when it quit the same as described. They tested the dizzy and it came back bad hall effect. So if the dizzy has a lot of miles on it, it might be both.
So I got the TFI and installed it, it lasted the whole 5 miles to work no problem, when i have to drive to base next week will be the real test... gonna take the full toolbox and some extra cash just in case though.
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