Whats Wrong With My 1978 Chevy Nova V6 4.1 It Will Not Start

Posted in Ignition Systems | Asked on Jun 15, 2010

I replaced distributor, installed new plugs and wires, I get spark plug and carb fuel – the car would not start then backfired It was a cold start, I then replaced pick up coil, ignition module, cap, red, plugs and wires. I selected dealer when I removed it and then back into position. I have not checked timing, but it’s always fire from Dist. to plug. – The car ran the day before I start the next morning, it went to warm it up by going back into the carburetor and then it would not start. How would increase the timing? I have no changes to that part of the Dist. before the show. What is the easiest way to get the # 1 cylinder top, engine in the car? – Ignition sequence is 153 624, timing is 6 degrees.

There are 3 Answers for "Whats Wrong With My 1978 Chevy Nova V6 4.1 It Will Not Start"

  1. ComicBookFan says:

    Have someone adjust your timing for you . Usually a mechanic will do it for free if you can get him to.

  2. jose p says:

    remove the spark plug #1 seal the hole with a piece of rack very tide to the hole, then give small action to the starter , and again, very small, the engine should move slowly, when that rack blows to the air, then you have the number one on the top. good luck.

  3. ? says:

    Well, I assume you got the wires on in the correct order (153624 clockwise rotation) and I also assum that the engine was not turned at all while the dist was out? but to be safe check…Number one is on the left bank of the engine from the driver seat. Remove number one plug and have a friend bump the key to spin the engine until compression is coming out of the plug hole. Turn the engine by hand now (socket on the crank bolt) until the timing mark on the harmonic balancer lines up with the timing indicator. now check to see that the distributor rotor is pointing to where number one plug wire would be on the cap.

    Now assuming that is all good, make sure all of the plugs are not gas soaked from getting flooded from all of the starting attempts.

    Next I would look at the carb. I am not sure where you are living, but if it like here in thje northeast, the temps have dropped drastically recently, and the choke might be off, too tight. Take off the air cleaner cover, look at the choke flap, is it open or closed? if closed, hold it open and open the throttle, now release the throttle and then the choke flap, the flap should have stayed open as the fast idle cam should have dropped., now operate the throttle linkage, did the choke snap shut?
    if if did good so far, stick your finger into the choke and see how springy the flap feels, if it is too tight the pull off will not be strong enough to pull it open enough while trying to start and you will flood.If the flap is too loose and not closing completely, you wont be rich enough to start in cold weather. now have somone crank the engine, as it starts, the pull off should open the choke flap slightly, too much and again too lean, not enough too rich, some pull offs are adjustable, some you have to tweek linkage. Same with the choke stat, some have screws holding them to the carb, most are riveted and will need to be drilled out to be able to adjust the choke stat.

    I know this is a lot of info to try to digest, but there are so many things that it “could be” it is hard to capture it all here. I have 25 (+/-) year doing this, and at times I still get stumped.

    Basically it boils down to fuel/air and spark, but there is also timing and compression and all of the fine tuning things like fuel air mixture too…good luck, I hope some or any of this helps

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