How to Check and Adjust Your Car’s Ignition Timing

Posted: March 25, 2013 by simonbbc in Reference

Instructions

1)
Find the timing mark which will be on the pulley or balancer. Mark the timing mark with a chalk to make it easier to see when adjusting the ignition timing. These engines will usually also has a timing index scale. Many front wheel drive cars will usually have their timing mark and index scale on the rear of the engine.
2)
You may have to remove vacuum lines or electrical connections from the distributor. This step is outlined in the ignition control decal. Read all instructions on this label to find out the necessary steps needed to adjust your car’s ignition timing.
3)
Start the engine and warm it up to curb idle. Now let’s connect your timing light to your car. The timing light will usually have three leads. The black lead connects to the negative post of the battery, the red lead connects to the positive post of the battery, and the last lead connects to the number one spark plug wire. Purchase a timing light with an inductive pickup. An inductive pickup will clamp on the number one spark plug. Keep all wires away from moving parts and hot surfaces.
4)
Loosen the bolt at the base of the distributor. Don’t remove it. Just loosen it.
5)
Put the transmission in park or neutral and set the parking brake. If the parking brake doesn’t work, block the wheels. Now start the engine. Pull the trigger on the timing light. This activates the xenon bulb inside the timing light which flashes once every time the number one spark plug fires. Aim the timing light at the front pulley. Align the mark on the pulley with the mark on the timing index scale. Move the distributor to align the marks. Turn off the engine. Now tighten the bolt at the base of the distributor. Make sure you keep the position of the distributor until the bolt is fully tightened. Start the engine to make sure everything works good.

You can read more on this HERE

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