How to Set the Timing on a Ford 2.9L

by Manny Jeter
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The Ford 2.9-liter, V-6 engine was built in Cologne, Germany and thus nicknamed the Ford Cologne engine. The Ford 2.9-liter engine was used on the Ford Bronco II, a compact SUV. The engine's ignition timing determines when a spark will occur to start the engine. The 2.9-liter engine has an ignition timing of 10 degrees. It is recommended to routinely check the ignition timing of your Cologne engine to keep up with maintenance needs of the 20- year- old engine. It's possible to adjust the ignition timing with a few tools and mechanical skills.

Step 1

Turn the 2.9-liter engine on. All accessories should be turned off.

Step 2

Place wheel chocks under the wheels of the car. Put the transmission in neutral and firmly engage the emergency brake.

Step 3

Open the hood to the 2.9-liter engine. Remove the shorting bar on the double wire spout connector at the ignition module. Engage the warm idle speed option on the idle speed control valve located by the engine.

Step 4

Connect the timing light to the battery by placing the red clip on the positive terminal and the black clip on the negative terminal. Next, put the timing light clamps on the number 1 spark plug wire connected to the cylinder head, and shine the actual timing light on the main crankshaft pulley.

Step 5

Notice where the timing light on the pulley falls in comparison to the degree tab on the front of the engine. Discontinue all car operations if the current ignition timing reads 10 degrees.

Step 6

Use your wrench to loosen the distributor lock-down bolt located at the base of the distributor housing. Disconnect the distributor vacuum hose and plug it into the electronic spark computer. Use jumper cables to ground the carburetor switch.

Step 7

Use your hand to rotate the distributor until the timing mark on the pulley aligns with the degree tab on the front of the engine reads 10 degrees.

Step 8

Unplug the distributor vacuum hose from the electronic spark computer and plug it back into the distributor housing. Tighten the distributor lock-down bolt with a wrench. Reconnect the single wire spout connector or the shorting bar previously disconnected.

Step 9

Remove the jumper cables from the ground carburetor switch and the timing light components from the engine. Close the hood to the engine and remove the wheel chocks from the wheels of the car.

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