More than likely it's the distributor. They have a tendency to build up corrosion and rust and have personally went through the same situation three weeks ago on a suburban. Check to see if you are getting spark from the distributor first. Have the ecm in the distributor checked at Oriellys for free. It's under the rotor and has two 8mm head bolts with wires plugged in at each end.
Check the power wire to the cap, and that the wire is hot in run / start. Might be a fuse or other problem not getting voltage to the distributor. If you do not have voltage but the fuse is good you might pull the fuse block down and look for corrosion where the wires plug into the back. Another thought, check that there is a good connection from the battery negative to the chassis. That can leave you with some strange problems. Larry A.
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You've already eliminated the spark plug & wireset, distributor cap & rotor. Sounds like your car needs a tune-up, specifically, the PCV (positive crankcase ventilation) valve, and/of the EGR (Exhaust Gas Recirculation) valve.
Components checked/replaced during a tune-up are: air filter motor oil motor oil filter breather filter fuel filter(s) fuel strainer PCV valve EGR valve spark plugs spark plug wires ECM or distributor cap & rotor cabin air filter transmission oil filter transmission oil engine coolant check all vacuum hoses and lines
Troubleshooting the no-start condition - from the 1990 Mitsu Mighty Max Repair Manual:
Priority Action Part Type -- Cause 1 Inspect Battery -- Battery Discharged or Faulty. 2 Inspect Battery Cable -- Corroded, Broken, Shorted or Poorly Connected Battery Cable. 3 Inspect Distributor Cap -- Distributor Cap Cracked or Burned. 3 Inspect Fuel Filter -- Clogged or Dirty Fuel Filter. 5 Inspect Ignition Coil -- Faulty Ignition Coil. 6 Inspect Wireset -- Worn, Damaged or Faulty Spark Plug Wire(s). 7 Inspect Spark Plug -- Incorrectly Gapped or Fouled Spark Plug(s). 8 Inspect Starter -- Starter Motor Faulty. 9 Inspect Fuel Pump -- Low Fuel Pressure. 10 Inspect Solenoid Switch -- Faulty Starter Solenoid Switch. 11 Inspect Fuel Pump Relay -- Faulty Fuel Pump Relay. 12 Inspect Fuel Injector Pressure Regulator -- Faulty Fuel Injector Pressure Regulator. 13 Inspect Ignition Switch -- Improperly Connected or Faulty Ignition Switch. 14 Inspect Starter Drive -- Faulty Starter Drive. 15 Inspect Fuel Injector -- Dirty or Worn Fuel Injectors. 16 Inspect Fuel Pump Strainer -- Clogged or Dirty Fuel Pump Strainerat. 17 Inspect Engine Control Computer -- Incorrect Operating Information Being Delivered and Sent From The EEC. 18 Inspect Fuel Tank -- Fuel Tank Empty. 19 Inspect Carburetor -- Carburetor Flooded or Faulty Choke. 20 Inspect Distributor -- Worn, Loose, or Incorrectly Installed Distributor.
well you didn't say what year it was , keeping that in mind I will
try to respond with the info you did give. Generally the Chevy G20
vans have a coil mounted in the distributor itself, so having spark
comming from the coil would mean it is not flowing through the rotor
to the plug wires..... not sounding right to me either,... Possibly
just a bad Distributor cap unless you have already replaced it.
So I would have you look at the Ignition module
first and the pick up coil second.. not mush else it could be (
ruling out a broken timing chain )
If it is a newer vehicle , it may have a crank position sensor failing or ecm.
ADVANCE AUTO HAS A MACHINE TO TEST MODULES.. BUT IF I WENT THROUGH THE HASSTLE TO REMOVE IT I WOULD REPLACE IT..YOU ARE DOING WHAT IS CALLED SHOTGUN REPAIR..REPLACING PARTS ON A GUESS..NEED TO FIND OUT WHAT YOU ARE MISSING SPARK,,, FUEL,, COMPRESION...GET BACK WITH ME
Start with fuel system. Listen for fuel pump humm at fuel tank No humm check wiring to pump for power. Then check for spark at plugs and wires. Remove wire from coil and hold near engine and see arch when you crank. No arch. Replace ignition Modular inside distributor cap or cap or rotor
Air - not likely the problem ! mechanical cable controlled throttle body
Fuel- make sure there is gas in tank! fuel pressure test at the throttle body or rails, if no fuel check power to fuel pump: ignition power to breaker or fuse, relay , power to pump at 3 pin connector near tank/frame rail on drivers side, - if pump is runniig but insufficient pressure, check for mechanical restriction: plugged filter broken or pinched line, plugged pickup tube in tank. if good pressure to rail or body, check ecm : diagnostic codes, fused power, ecm tells injectors when to open, dependent upon several sensor parameter inputs.
Spark- ignition - coil-distributor-ignition module (or coil packs)- wires-plugs-ignition module (signals coil to discharge, mounted beneath distr cap) work backwards from plugs.
try setting the distributor even tho they are controlled by a computer and spark is advanced or retared by the computer if they get 10 degrees or more out of time they cant correct it and start hard or a no start issue. Turn the engine to top dead center on 1. I figured out that the notch on dampener lines up with notch on the block. mark the direction the rotor is facing and when you put the cap on, adjusted the distributor so that the #1 terminal is dead on with the rotor (follow the raised area on the cap from the #1 plug wire and this will let you see where the #1 terminal lines up). one other thing it could also be is the module on the distributor but if you have spark it shouldnt be that
Normally on chevy ignition modules when they go bad, they will quit when they get hot & after cooling down will work again, so when you have them tested they have cooled down. I would try changing it & see if it wont fix it.