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Thread: Knocking and horsepower troubles

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Posts
    3

    Default Knocking and horsepower troubles

    Westy Fans,

    We were driving down the highway when the engine started making a loud noise almost as if something happened to the exhaust. We pulled over and I had my wife rev the engine a bit while I examined the engine but there wasn't anything obvious. So I guessed that the issue was an exhaust malfunction and continued driving with the aim to fix it later. Unfortunately, after a few miles I began losing power and took the next exit. I practically crawled up a hill and luckily made my way into a Walmart parking lot.

    The van will still start and run but with little power and an almost choking sound, my two boys said that the van was "farting". We have driven around 2k miles in the past week the start of which was a warm so the engine was running a bit hot. I had to check the oil every time we stopped for gas (after letting it sit for a bit). I had to add oil pretty much every time and it seemed like oil was being sprayed from that black thing on top of the engine in front of the carburetor ( sorry I am new to this ) and would leak a bit from the dipstick.

    The van is an air cooled 1975 Vanagon with a single carburetor 1.8L I believe.

    I am wondering if it is a clogged fuel filter which I will change soon. Does this sound reasonable?

    Thanks for any help.

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Posts
    118

    Default

    Toasted camshaft.

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Posts
    3

    Default Quick Test

    I haven't had much time to diagnose the problem but I did a quick test this morning. I undid each of the 4 spark plug wires then only lightly put them pack on. With the engine running I removed each of them in turn. If I label them 1 2 3 4 clockwise where one is on the left front, closest to the driver side:
    1 2
    5
    3 4

    When I pull off 2, 3, and 4 there is an obvious change in the engine but when I pull off 1, even though it arcs, there is not a change.

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Posts
    3

    Default

    Turned out to be a bad spark plug. Put in a new spark plug and redid the test and the cylinder was obviously firing.

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Posts
    118

    Default

    Hey jaybee75....congratulations on the fix. That has to be the record for the "cheapest Vanagon fix EVER"

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