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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey everyone, I am new to this forum but a long time impala owner. I just encountered a problem with my 95 ss. Lately after my car warms up upon exceleration and stop at traffic lights my idle is unstable. Then this morning the car would not start. When i finaly got it started i was revving the car from the throttle body and it shocked my hand, then cut off and wouldn't start. I am assuming this is the optispark crapping out. Tonight i am going to change the opti and plugs and wires. Hopefully this is the problem
 

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doesnt sound like the opti to me? Keep researching those syptoms. Check the camaro boards and other LT1 related sites.
 

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Well, if you've never serviced the ignition system, how is it crap if it wears out? Go spend some time reading in here and you should find lots and lots of information that will help you.
 

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Our cars are old and things wear out.
Sounds like time for a thorough Ignition System Maintenance.

New Plug Wires, Coil Wire and Plugs.
Rebuild the ICM and Coil system
Buy and install a new ICM.
From Innovative Wiring get a new Opti Harness
Install a new Temp Sensor and harness.

Not really all that money..

Do all this before replacing the OPTI.
 

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I agree with the ignition wires...you got shocked...the only part that can give you that jolt is the ignition system on the high side of the coil. The rest of the car is 12 volts, and you can touch both poles of the battery with your fingers and not even feel it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks for the info..i checked the wires at nite,(no sparks,the plugs and wires are fairly new..everything is well maintained..but about a year ago i had the same symptons after i let my wife use the car during a rain storm and she said she had hit a large puddle of water..the next day the car was missing and runing like crap. So i googled my problem and everything pointed at the opti. I removed the vac vents at the bottom of the opti and blew air though them with my compressor and some water came out and presto..car was running good again..??? I was thinking about that coil-pack system.
 

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OPTI vent harness is how old? Getting shocked while touching the TB has nothing to do with the OPTI, you have another isue going on.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Well,bad news today..went to my buddy's shop to check my car. I replaced the cap & rotor, new plugs, wires, and a new coil...still nothing. My mechanic says I'm getting plenty of spark, and when he disconnects the injectors and manually sprays starting fluid it will run, just that the injectors are dispensing fuel out out of order..He says the only thing left is the ECM?..timing is good,compression is good, injectors clean and good, fuel pump good....What do you guys think? And by the way about a year back my friend with a 96 ss, ran his car at the track and the same thing happend to him and he ended up parting his car out...????
 

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Sounds like she does not like you....

Any codes? Was it a 95 or 96? ECM could be the devil on this one, or maybe she just does not want it anymore. I would scan for codes, as far as getting "shocked" that almost seems like a ground issue.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Its a 95 ECM..and if i'm mistaken i think the car reads OBD1 but has an OBD2 plug. Now if it is the ECM, will a 94 ECM the same lt1 work? I know that the 96 has front and rear o2's. And the 94-95's only had front o'2..so i think they should match..
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I went to the local junk yard and picked up another ECM from a wrecked caprice and still nothing..could the distibutor possibly be bad internally?..i looked at purchasing a new ECM and all say programming required. Is programming hard to do?
 

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OK what exactly have you checked thus far?

Run thru the list from begining to end.
 

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I know you mentioned you replaced your spark plug wires.. but did you replace the ignition coil wire. I've had similar issues before and found that the wire was literally hanging by a thread inside the boot. Except mine was causing arcs that could be seen at night.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Plugs & Wires, Coil & coil wire, Optispark cap & rotor...Next might be a new ECM, this kinda sucks because the car has ran awsome since i got it and it is mint. paint, interior, everything is like new,and before this mishap the car ran a consistant 14.7 at the track. ( i need to get her runnin again)
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Depending on the brand of "stuff" you installed, I would question the coil wire

I would question the actual coil wire, the module under the coil and the opti harness, unlpug the opti harness and look inside there to see all FOUR prongs are up straight and shiny, then look over the pigtail itself, I had one go bad and it would literally do NOTHING until I unplugged it and plugged it back in, bought a new one off ebay for $30 or $40 and it has ran BEAUTIFULLY ever since. I guess by now I would be leaning toward the opti but I will say that ALOT of people on here (newbys) jump to that to quickly. But in your case it sounds like it or the harness.
 

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Plugs & Wires, Coil & coil wire, Optispark cap & rotor...Next might be a new ECM, this kinda sucks because the car has ran awsome since i got it and it is mint. paint, interior, everything is like new,and before this mishap the car ran a consistant 14.7 at the track.
OK. Puddle. No start. Blew water out. Replaced cap & rotor.

What brand cap & rotor? Was threadlocker used to install the rotor? What was the condition of the original cap & rotor? What was the condition of the optical sensor and 360 degree disk? Was there coolant present? Was there oil present? Either of those can ruin the OS and you'll have a perfectly fine working cap & rotor w/ the same original underlying problem. I'm feeling you thought you solved the issue and moved on to another step or part, but never truly affected repair to the real problem.

The symptoms you're describing are all completely in line w/ a failed opti or a cheaper, unreliable replacement. Usually w/ the latter, it's due to a poor quality optical sensor. In your case, I suspect your original optical sensor has become compromised.
 

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OK. Puddle. No start. Blew water out. Replaced cap & rotor.

What brand cap & rotor? Was threadlocker used to install the rotor? What was the condition of the original cap & rotor? What was the condition of the optical sensor and 360 degree disk? Was there coolant present? Was there oil present? Either of those can ruin the OS and you'll have a perfectly fine working cap & rotor w/ the same original underlying problem. I'm feeling you thought you solved the issue and moved on to another step or part, but never truly affected repair to the real problem.

The symptoms you're describing are all completely in line w/ a failed opti or a cheaper, unreliable replacement. Usually w/ the latter, it's due to a poor quality optical sensor. In your case, I suspect your original optical sensor has become compromised.
btw - "opticrap" is very passe. How many distributors in the history of automobiles are you aware of that will go 100k+ miles and still run strong? Initially, people denigrated and blamed the unit unjustly because they didn't know what made it tick. Now all of that has been revealed. It's actually an excellent component. Yes, their placement of the coolant bleed valve directly over it is contentious to say the least, however that's a different story.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Got her back on track...it was the module under the coil....Now that i have replaced just about the whole ignition system..lol
Thanks for all the advice everyone.
 

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I thought so..

I figured it was the Ignition Module.
 
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