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Old 02-07-2012, 06:00 PM   #1
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98 Dakota occasional loss of power then backfire


Every once in a while I will get a sense that the acceleration is of or idle is slightly of eventually it will run rough (stumble) then back fire. After that it will be fine until next time. Giving it more gas doesn't seem the help any I've floored it and it still lost speed.

It doesn't seem to be engine temp related. Any ideas and any way to test for it?

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Old 02-07-2012, 06:14 PM   #2
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98 Dakota occasional loss of power then backfire


The timing is off.

If the ignition is computer controlled, 98, probably is, looks like a faulty chip.

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Old 02-07-2012, 06:17 PM   #3
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98 Dakota occasional loss of power then backfire


Your catalytic converter could be broken up and plugging your exhaust. Pretty common on those bang on your cat and if it rattles it's bad. You can test for back psi with a gauge in the o2 sensor port or disconnect the exhaust before the cat and drive it.
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Old 02-08-2012, 08:45 AM   #4
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98 Dakota occasional loss of power then backfire


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Originally Posted by cjm94 View Post
Your catalytic converter could be broken up and plugging your exhaust. Pretty common on those bang on your cat and if it rattles it's bad. You can test for back psi with a gauge in the o2 sensor port or disconnect the exhaust before the cat and drive it.
"He is talking about bangs and shimmy, doesn't look like instrumentation to me!"

If there is a rattle on idle, then you have a bad catalytic converter too.
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Old 02-08-2012, 09:34 PM   #5
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98 Dakota occasional loss of power then backfire


Who said anything about instrumentation?
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Old 02-08-2012, 10:15 PM   #6
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98 Dakota occasional loss of power then backfire


raise the hood at night and see if you see any sparks jumping between the plug wires. happened to me once.
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Old 02-09-2012, 12:53 PM   #7
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98 Dakota occasional loss of power then backfire


Does sound like a cat converter problem to me. If you can provide more info such as the mileage, last time plugs and wires were changed, etc., we can narrow down a few things.
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Old 02-10-2012, 06:35 PM   #8
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98 Dakota occasional loss of power then backfire


Plugs and wires changed in probable the last 30,000 miles, miles on OD176,000. It wouldn't think it would be anything maintenance related. I keep up the maintenance on it.

What about the IAC valve could that be something to look at? If the cat whose plunged wouldn't the rear o2 censer light come on?

I will look into these but the exhaust might have to weight until wormer weather.
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Old 02-10-2012, 09:10 PM   #9
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98 Dakota occasional loss of power then backfire


The iac valve does not do anything off idle. It is used to control idle and replace the dash pot function for sudden deceleration. On older dodges the downstream O2 sensors are not real tight parameters. I actually removed the cat on my 96 for a while when it plugged and it did not set the light.
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Old 02-13-2012, 10:08 AM   #10
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98 Dakota occasional loss of power then backfire


Do you know if that is the original cat on there? If so, I would definitely be looking at that as the problem. 176K miles is a lot if you never had it changed.
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Old 02-13-2012, 05:56 PM   #11
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98 Dakota occasional loss of power then backfire


I believe its OEM but not positive. If it will not mess up the computer I could remove it when it worms up.


Last edited by rodm1; 02-13-2012 at 06:20 PM.
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