cylinder no. 4 misfire issue

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cylinder no. 4 misfire issue

Postby snookumsthacat - August 3rd, 2012, 9:22 pm

Hey guys, so I just bought an escape 3.0l with 165k miles. I've been working on it for a week trying to figure out what is going on with my cylinder #4. It looks like the previous owner tried to troubleshoot it because that particular cylinder is the only one that doesn't have a motorcraft coil pack. ( I noticed this while I was replacing it with an advance auto parts coil pack). So far I've changed the #4 coil pack, motorcraft platinum spark plugs, felpro upper and lower intake manifold gaskets, purolator pcv valve, added seafoam fuel injector cleaner, and changed some rubber vacuum tube on the pcv valve that seemed a little loose and old. After all of that, I don't even notice a difference in it's performance. The engine shakes on idle and after resetting the codes, I continue to get the cylinder 4 misfire code. I'm starting to wonder if its one of the harness connections or the 2 wires leading from the coil pack.

Does anybody have any experience with ignition wiring issues on the v6 escape or does it seem like I'm going in the right direction? :?

Thanks in advance. :hi:
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Re: cylinder no. 4 misfire issue

Postby RainbowToupees - August 3rd, 2012, 9:57 pm

snookumsthacat wrote:Hey guys, so I just bought an escape 3.0l with 165k miles. I've been working on it for a week trying to figure out what is going on with my cylinder #4. It looks like the previous owner tried to troubleshoot it because that particular cylinder is the only one that doesn't have a motorcraft coil pack. ( I noticed this while I was replacing it with an advance auto parts coil pack). So far I've changed the #4 coil pack, motorcraft platinum spark plugs, felpro upper and lower intake manifold gaskets, purolator pcv valve, added seafoam fuel injector cleaner, and changed some rubber vacuum tube on the pcv valve that seemed a little loose and old. After all of that, I don't even notice a difference in it's performance. The engine shakes on idle and after resetting the codes, I continue to get the cylinder 4 misfire code. I'm starting to wonder if its one of the harness connections or the 2 wires leading from the coil pack.

Does anybody have any experience with ignition wiring issues on the v6 escape or does it seem like I'm going in the right direction? :?

Thanks in advance. :hi:


Headed in the right direction for sure!

    First off, have you ran an OBD-II scanner to see what codes come up? If you have the codes, post them!

    Next, have you tried disconnecting the battery overnight? That fixed mine a couple times when I was having issues.

    What brand of COP did you put on? I know a few people that put on a single Accel and still had issues until they changed all 6 to same brand.

    Did you just change the coil, or use a whole new with boot + spring? If you just changed the coil, might want to check the spring for rust.

    The Escape COP's are notorious for giving problems due to that the tops get a slight crack at the top which moisture gets in and fouls them until they dry out. A few people have solved their issues by taking off all 6 and checking them for cracks, and using (not exactly sure which brand/kind) but like hobby glue or epoxy to seal them up after heating them with a hair dryer and cleaning them.

Hope this helps a little!
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Re: cylinder no. 4 misfire issue

Postby snookumsthacat - August 3rd, 2012, 10:18 pm

RainbowToupees wrote:
Headed in the right direction for sure!

    First off, have you ran an OBD-II scanner to see what codes come up? If you have the codes, post them!

    Next, have you tried disconnecting the battery overnight? That fixed mine a couple times when I was having issues.

    What brand of COP did you put on? I know a few people that put on a single Accel and still had issues until they changed all 6 to same brand.

    Did you just change the coil, or use a whole new with boot + spring? If you just changed the coil, might want to check the spring for rust.

    The Escape COP's are notorious for giving problems due to that the tops get a slight crack at the top which moisture gets in and fouls them until they dry out. A few people have solved their issues by taking off all 6 and checking them for cracks, and using (not exactly sure which brand/kind) but like hobby glue or epoxy to seal them up after heating them with a hair dryer and cleaning them.

Hope this helps a little!


RainbowToupees,

I had it scanned with an OBD-II scanner but I forgot to get the code number. I will have to get that tomorrow morning.

The battery was disconnected overnight when I was cleaning the acid off of it and clearing the codes, but the misfire code came back and the engine light was flashing indicating a misfire.

The COP I used was a BWD ignition coil >> http://shop.advanceautoparts.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/product_ignition-coil-bwd_18240246-p?searchTerm=coil+pack+#fragment-3
It has the new spring, boot, and coil included as a whole unit. The old one I took out had an expanded boot that was melted to the spark plug so that was destroyed in the process of removing it.

I think tomorrow after I get the code from the OBD-II scanner, I will swap the COP with cylinder #5 and see if it is an issue with the COP brand. I would hate to have to cut through the wire conduit to source these harness wires and possibly replace them; it just sounds really messy!
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Re: cylinder no. 4 misfire issue

Postby RainbowToupees - August 3rd, 2012, 10:26 pm

snookumsthacat wrote:It has the new spring, boot, and coil included as a whole unit. The old one I took out had an expanded boot that was melted to the spark plug so that was destroyed in the process of removing it.


Eek! Hope you don't have an issue with the head, such as blow-by past the spark plug. Seen it happen several times (not saying you, but previous owner possibly) where people change the plug while the heads are hot, and mess up the threads, ect.

You could also use a multimeter to check if you're getting spark thrown through that coil. Or, switch coils like you said. Either way works :yes:

But melted on... yikes. Best of luck, hope it's nothing major!
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Re: cylinder no. 4 misfire issue

Postby jbone2470 - August 4th, 2012, 5:11 pm

I was gonna say swap the #4 with #5 coil and see if code follows and still runs crappy. The code u got was a p0304 if it was the #4 cyl.

Also did ya double check the spark plug gaps..Those coil harness plugs can get dirty or malfunction.Check the connection carefully.

If all that doesn;t work then try check the injector,did ya replace the o rings while u had them off? If all else fails then a compression test leak down test might be in order to see what is the problem.Hopefully not valves.

Did you take off the whole harness off all 3 coils? if so did ya put it back on backwards? I interested in the outcome.keep posted.
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Re: cylinder no. 4 misfire issue

Postby snookumsthacat - August 8th, 2012, 4:04 pm

jbone2470 wrote:I was gonna say swap the #4 with #5 coil and see if code follows and still runs crappy. The code u got was a p0304 if it was the #4 cyl.

Also did ya double check the spark plug gaps..Those coil harness plugs can get dirty or malfunction.Check the connection carefully.

If all that doesn't work then try check the injector,did ya replace the o rings while u had them off? If all else fails then a compression test leak down test might be in order to see what is the problem.Hopefully not valves.

Did you take off the whole harness off all 3 coils? if so did ya put it back on backwards? I interested in the outcome.keep posted.


I swapped #4 and #5 coil and reset the check engine light. After 15 minutes of driving, the p0304 : cylinder #4 misfire code was revealed with the OBD-II scanner again. So it definitely is not the coil.

The spark plugs are all new and I checked their gap as I put them in so that is correct. The coil harness plugs are all clean; in fact it looks like the previous owner might have had the coil harness plug replaced on cylinder 4 because it looks identical except the markings on the harness aren't the same as the other 5 are and it looks to be newer.

The injectors I didn't remove from the fuel rail when i changed the intake manifold gaskets and pcv valve. I was avoiding that because I didn't want to tear a new o-ring and have a fuel leak to deal with.

The harnesses for the coils I did one by one as to make sure I didn't put them in improper order when I did the tune up.

I guess it could be the fuel injector, the wire leading from the coil harness back to the main harness, or there could be bad compression in that cylinder for whatever reason. I'll go get a compression test and keep looking. Its not looking very optimistic at this point.
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Re: cylinder no. 4 misfire issue

Postby rusty_shackleford - February 26th, 2013, 9:48 am

Were you able to get it fixed? what happened?
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Re: cylinder no. 4 misfire issue

Postby PoolShark78 - March 20th, 2013, 2:50 pm

Hey I've got the same issue goin on. At first I changed the spark plug and the whole coil pack. Yet I am still having the same issue. I even switched the #4 and #5 coil packs around to see if it would change. Which it did not. The only thing I haven't done is check the fuel injectors. How often does the injector go bad though? If anybody else has some helpful information I'd greatly appreciate it.
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Re: cylinder no. 4 misfire issue

Postby snookumsthacat - April 25th, 2013, 6:25 pm

So, the issue ended up being that the valves on the 4th cylinder were burnt. I continued to drive it and the fuel was pushed to the 1st cylinder and burned those valves too. Unfortunately I now have to take off the heads and have them rebuilt. Anybody know how much it costs to have a head redone if I do all the labor myself?

Thanks :roll:
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