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Como funciona um carburador

Se voc leu a pgina Como funcionam os motores de carros, sabe que a idia que
existe por trs de um motor queimar gasolina para criar presso e ento transformar esta
presso em movimento. necessria uma quantidade muito pequena de gasolina durante
cada ciclo de combusto. Tudo o que a combusto precisa de algo em torno de 10
miligramas de gasolina por curso de combusto!
O objetivo de um carburador misturar a quantidade certa de gasolina ou lcool com o ar
para que o motor funcione de maneira adequada. Caso no haja combustvel suficiente
misturado com o ar, o motor "fica pobre" e poder no dar a partida ou pode ser
danificado. Caso haja muito combustvel misturado com o ar, o motor "fica rico" e tambm
pode ser que no pegue, faz fumaa preta, funciona mal (afoga facilmente, morre) ou, no
mnimo, desperdia combustvel. O carburador tem a misso de fazer a mistura correta.
Nos carros novos, a injeo de combustvel est se tornando quase universal, j que
proporciona menor consumo de combustvel e reduz as emisses. Mas quase todos os
carros mais antigos e equipamentos pequenos, como cortadores de grama e motoserras,
usam carburadores, porque eles so simples e baratos.
O carburador de uma motosserra um bom exemplo, porque bem simples. Alis, mais
do que a maioria dos carburadores ele precisa atender a trs condies apenas:
ele tem que fazer o motor funcionar mesmo sob baixas temperaturas
ele precisa funcionar quando o motor estiver em marcha-lenta
ele precisa funcionar com o motor acelerao plena
Ningum que opera uma motosserra est interessado em transincia entre a marcha-lenta
e o acelerador todo aberto, portanto a diferena de desempenho gradual entre esses dois
extremos no muito importante. Em um carro, todas as faixas intermedirias so
importantes e por isso que o carburador dos carros muito mais complexo.
Voc pode ver um carburador de motosserra nas duas fotos a seguir:

Foto do carburador 1 - este o lado que se conecta ao motor


Foto do carburador 2 - este o lado que recebe o ar externo atravs do filtro de ar
Aqui esto as peas de um carburador:
um carburador , essencialmente, um tubo;
h uma chapa ajustvel atravessada no tubo chamada borboleta de
acelerao, que controla quanto de ar pode fluir atravs do tubo. Voc pode ver
a borboleta ou vlvula circular de lato na foto 1;
h um estreitamento em determinado ponto do tubo, chamado venturi, em que
nesse estreitamento criado uma depresso. O venturi est visvel na foto 2;
neste estreitamento, h um orifcio, chamado glic (do francs gicleur), que
permite a vazo do combustvel sugado pela depresso. Voc pode ver o glic
na lateral esquerda do venturi na foto 2.
O carburador est operando "normalmente" quando em acelerao mxima. Nesse caso,
a borboleta est paralela ao tubo em seu comprimento, permitindo que o mximo de ar flua
atravs do carburador. O fluxo de ar cria uma boa depresso no venturi e h uma dada
vazo de combustvel atravs do glic. Voc pode ver um par de parafusos na parte
superior direita do carburador na foto 1. Um destes parafusos (identificado como "Hi" (alta,
principal), no caso da motosserra) controla quanto de combustvel flui para dentro do
venturi na acelerao mxima.
Quando o motor est em marcha-lenta, a borboleta de acelerao est quase fechada (a
posio dela nas fotos a de marcha-lenta). No h ar suficiente fluindo atravs do venturi
para criar depresso. Entretanto, na parte de trs da borboleta h bastante depresso
(porque ela est restringindo o fluxo de ar). Se um pequeno orifcio for feito na lateral do
tubo do carburador exatamente atrs da borboleta, o combustvel pode ser fluir para tubo
pela depresso abaixo da borboleta. Este pequeno orifcio chamado de glic de
marcha-lenta. O outro parafuso do par visto na foto 1 identificado como "Lo" (baixa,
marcha-lenta) e controla a quantidade de combustvel que flui atravs deste glic.
Ambos os parafusos Hi e Lo so simplesmente vlvulas de agulha. Ao gir-los, voc
permite que mais ou menos combustvel flua pela agulha. Quando voc os ajusta, est
controlando diretamente quanto combustvel flui atravs do glic de marcha-lenta e do
glic principal.
Quando o motor est frio e voc tenta dar a partida puxando a corda de arranque, ele
acionado em uma rotao bem baixa. Por estar frio, ele precisa de uma mistura bastante
rica para dar a partida. onde entra a borboleta do afogador. Quando ativada, a borboleta
do afogador cobre completamente o venturi. Se a borboleta de acelerao est
completamente aberta e o venturi est coberto, o vcuo do motor arrasta combustvel
atravs do glic principal e um pouco pelo de marcha-lenta (como a entrada do tubo do
carburador est completamente coberta, toda a depresso do motor puxa combustvel
atravs dos glics). Geralmente essa mistura rica permite que o motor pegue uma ou duas
vezes, ou funcione bem lentamente. Ao abrir a borboleta do afogador, o motor passa a
funcionar normalmente.
Carburetor Monologue (How
carburetors work...)
Bob Frasier June 6, 1996

First, some basic theory, and terminology. All carburetors work on what is known as
"the Bernoulli Principle". In english, the Bernoulli principle states that as the velocity of
an ideal gas increases, the pressure drops. Within a certain range of velocity and
pressure, the change in pressure is pretty much linear with velocity-if the velocity
doubles, the pressure halves. However, this linear relationship only holds within a
certain range (more on this, and why it is important, later). Carburators work because as
air is pulled into the carb throat (AKA the "venturi"), it has to accelerate from rest, to
some speed. How fast depends upon the air flow demanded by the engine speed and the
throttle butterfly setting. According to Bernoulli, this air flowing through the throat of
the carb will be at a pressure less than atmospheric pressure, and related to the velocity
(and hence to how much air is being fed into the engine).

So now, we have air flowing through the carb throat, at some pressure less than
atmospheric. If a small port is drilled into the carb throat in this low pressure region,
there will be a pressure difference between the throat side (what I will call the inside) of
the port, and the side that is exposed to the atmosphere. If a reservoir of gasoline (aka
the float bowl) is between the inside of the port, and the atmosphere, the pressure
difference will pull gasoline through the port, into the air stream. At this point, the
"port" gets the name of a "jet" in the concept of a carb. The more air that the engine
pulls through the carb throat, the greater the pressure drop across the jet, and the more
fuel that gets pulled in. As noted above, within a range of airflow in the throat, and fuel
flow in the jet, the ratio of fuel to air that flows will stay constant. And if the jet is the
right size, that ratio will be what the engine wants for best performance. I should
mention that I am describing a simple carb with a fixed throat and jet size. Like on most
older cars. The CV carbs on a BMW work on the same principles, but they vary the
throat and jet size in order to extend the range over which the carb can accurately meter
fuel.

This is where things start to get more complicated. As I noted, a venturi/jet arrangement
can only meter fuel accurately over a certain range of flow rates and pressures. As flow
rates increase, either the venturi or the jet, or both, will begin to "choke"-that is they
reach a point where the flow rate will not increase, no matter how hard the engine tries
to pull air through. At the other extreme, when the velocity of the air in the venturi is
very low-like at idle or during startup, the pressure drop across the jet becomes
vanishingly small. It is this extreme that concerns us with respect to starting, idle and
low-speed throttle response.

At idle, the pressure drop in a 32 mm venturi is so small that essentially no fuel will be
pulled through the main jets. But the pressure difference across the throttle butterfly
(which is almost completely closed) can be as high as 25+ mm Hg. Carb designers take
advantage of this situation by placing an extra jet (the "idle jet" natch.) just downstream
of the throttle butterfly. Because of the very high pressure difference at idle, and the
very small amount of fuel required, this jet is tiny. When the throttle is open any
significant amount, the amount of fuel that flows through this jet is small, and for all
intents and purposes, constant. So it's effect on the midrange and up mixture is easily
compensated for.

During startup, the amount of air flowing through the carb is smaller still. At least till
the engine begins to run on it's own. But when it is being turned by the starter or the
kicker, rpm is in the sub-100 range sometimes. So the pressure difference across the jets
is again in the insignificant range. Plus, if the engine is cold, it wants the mixture extra-
rich to compensate for the fact that a lot of the fuel that does get mixed with air in the
carb precipitates out on the cold walls of the intake port. Now we come to "chokes" and
"enricheners". Bing carbs, and most bike carbs, use enrichener circuits. All this really is,
is another port or jet from the float bowl to just downstream of the throttle butterfly.
Except that the fuel flow to this jet is regulated by a valve that is built into the carb
body. At startup, when the lever is in the full on position, the valve is wide open, and the
fuel supply to the cold start jet is more or less unlimited. In this condition, the amount of
fuel that flows through the cold start jet is regulated just like the idle jet is. When the
throttle is closed, the pressure drop across the jet is high, and lots of fuel flows, resulting
in a very rich mixture, just perfect for ignition of a cold motor. If the throttle butterfly is
opened, the pressure difference is less, and less fuel flows. This is why R bikes like no
throttle at all until the engine catches. However, the mixture quickly gets too rich, and
opening the throttle a tad will make things better. Just like the idle jet, this cold start jet
is small enough that even when the circuit is wide open, the amount of fuel that can
flow is small enough that at large throttle openings, it has little impact on the mixture.
This is why you can ride off with the starting circuit on full, and the bike will run pretty
well-until you close the throttle for the first time, and the mixture gets so rich the engine
stalls. The valve that controls fuel supply to the cold start jet allows the rider to cut the
fuel available through that jet down from full during startup, to none or almost none
once the engine is warm. In most cases, at the intermediate setting, fuel to the cold start
jet is cut to the point where the engine will still idle when warm, although very poorly
since it is way too rich.

True "chokes" are different. But very aptly named. A choke is simply a plate that can be
maneuvered so that it completely (or very nearly) blocks off the carburetor throat at it's
entrance ("choking" the carb, just like a killer to a victim in a bad movie). That means
that the main, idle, intermediate, etc., jets are all downstream of the choke plate. Then,
when the engine tries to pull air through the carb, it can't. The only place that anything
at all can come in to the carb venturi is through the various jets. Since there is little or
no air coming in, this results in an extremely rich mixture. The effect is maximized if
the throttle butterfly (which is downstream of the big main jets and the choke plate) is
wide open, not impeding things in any way. If the throttle butterfly is completely closed,
the engine does not really know that the choke is there-all the engine "sees" is a closed
throttle, so there is little enrichening effect. The engine will pull as much fuel as
possible through the idle jet, but that is so small it won't have much effect. So a carb
with a choke behaves in exactly the opposite manner as one with an enrichener. During
the cranking phase, it is best to have the throttle pegged at WFO so that the most fuel
gets pulled in, resulting in a nice rich mixture. But as soon as the motor starts, you want
to close the throttle to cut down the effect of the choke. Even that is not enough, and
most chokes are designed so that as soon as there is any significant airflow, they
automatically open part way. Otherwise the engine would flood. Even "manual" chokes
have this feature most of the time.

So. I hope this is all at least somewhat clear. "Enricheners" are an extra, controllable jet
that provides more fuel to richen the low speed mixture. The amount of fuel they
provide is at a maximum when the throttle is closed, and the airflow is at a minimum.
As the throttle is opened, the overall mixture effect goes down. Chokes on the other
hand, cut off the supply of air to the carb without changing the jetting in any way. But
by their action, they increase the pressure difference across all the jets at low engine
speeds, enrichening the mixture. This effect is at a maximum at high engine speeds and
throttle openings. Which is why different carb types behave different ways during
startup.

I have intentionally left this description somewhat general. I will be glad to try and
answer any questions that the text raises.

Bob Frasier
Cold Starting
. . . . . . .
Problem
CONDITION POSSIBLE CAUSE CORRECTION
Engine cranks but will 1) Choke not closing. 1) Inspect choke adjustment
not start. and for something binding.
Adjust if necessary.
2) Choke linkage 2) Lube with WD-40 and check
binding. for something bent. Adjust if
necessary.
3) No gas in carb. 3) Check fuel delivery. Look for
plugged filter or clogged lines,
bad pump, stuck needle &
seat, and fuel pressure.
4) Accelerator pump 4) Replace the pump. Problem
defective or blown is usually caused by bad gas,
out. dirt in gas, or vacuum leak or
ignition problems causing
engine spitback.
5) No spark or engine 5) Diagnose & correct the
problems such as bad problem.
compression.
Engine starts, then dies 1) Choke not closing 1) See notes above. Adjust
within a few seconds. properly. choke if necessary.
2) Big vacuum leak on 2) Use vacuum gauge to
engine somewhere. check. Fix the leak. You may
have put the base gasket on
wrong or it is the wrong one
for this carb & engine
combination.
3) Choke pull off 3) Adjust to factory specs.
setting incorrect. Carb can get bumped in
shipping or transportation and
can accidentally change the
setting.
4) Fast idle RPM set 4) Adjust to recommended
too slow. RPM.
5)Low fuel delivery. 5) Correct delivery to carb.
Usually it is a plugged up filter.
6) Electrical or 6) Do complete tune up &
compression diagnosis. Fix the problems
problems on the found.
engine.
7) Float level set very 7) Check & adjust the float
low. level to factory specs.
8) No electricity up to 8) Check for power & ground.
idle solenoid, or no Correct the problem.
ground.
9) Defective idle 9) Replace it.
solenoid.
Engine normally starts 1) Choke not set tight 1) Set choke a little tighter &
OK but then dies enough. try it.
backing out the
driveway or at the first 2) Choke pull-off 2) The setting varies
stop sign. After that it opening too much. depending upon the exact
runs OK. application. One carb may fit
several applications. Set the
pull-off so the choke is a little
tighter.
Engine starts OK, 1) Choke set too tight. 1) Adjust a little (1/8") looser.
increases RPM then
gets too slow with lots 2) Pull-off set too 2) Adjust so it is open a little
of black smoke. tight. more.
3) Slow flooding. 3) Fix cause of flooding. (see
"flooding" section coming
soon)
4) Float level very 4) (Rare) Set to factory specs.
high.
5) Power valve blown. 5) Replace the power valve.
(only happens on
Ford & Holley)
6) Pull-off diaphram 6) Caused by installer allowing
blown. engine to spit-back up through
carb. Replace the pull off.
7) (on Carter) Pump 7) Same cause as #6 above.
blown out Replace the pump.
8) Sunk float. 8) Same cause as #6 above.
Replace the float.
9) Choke spring may 9) Remove choke cover, cool
be backwards and is off choke, reverse spring,
getting tight when reinstall cover and set tension
heating up instead of to factory specs.
loose.
Engine starts, then 1) Big vacuum leak 1) Correct the vacuum leak.
races for a few somewhere. Make sure you haven't
seconds and then dies forgotten to hook up a hose
every time. somewhere. Base gasket may
be wrong one or on wrong.

Warm Starting
. . . . . . .
Problem

POSSIBLE
CONDITION CORRECTION
CAUSE
Engine cranks but 1) Carburetor 1) See section on "flooding" for details
will not start. flooding. on how to correct.
2) Choke is closed 2) Find & fix cause for choke staying
when engine is hot. closed. Look for no heat source, spring
in backwards, or something jammed or
bent.
3) No spark. 3) Do complete tune up.
4) No compression. 4) Diagnose cause of no compression
& fix.
5) No fuel 5) Check fuel delivery volume and
pressure. Look for clogged lines, filter,
or pump. Check for kinked or swollen
fuel lines.
6) No air. 6) Check for clogged air filter,
especially after driving through muddy
or dusty area.
7) Too much air 7) Look for big vacuum leak, such as
broken hose, blown gasket, bad power
brake diaphram, bad PCV valve.
Engine starts, 1) Choke is staying 1) Diagnose and fix choke problem.
then dies within a closed
few seconds.
2) Flooding 2) See section on flooding.
3) Power valve 3) Replace power valve.
blown.
4) Venting system 4) Check out entire fuel system
failure. venting system, inluding the vent valve
on the carb, the charcoal canister, all
hoses & check valves in the system,
and any solenoids that trigger the vent
system to operate.
5) Idle jet plugged 5) Clean out the idle jet and any other
up with dirt. dirt in the carb.
6) Idle air bleed 6) Check idle air bleed. Clean or
plugged up or replace as necessary.
missing.
7) Idle cut-off 7) Check idle solenoid, especially for
solenoid not power to it and ground to it, replace
working. solenoid if necessary.
Engine starts, 1) Big vacuum leak 1) Find the vacuum leak & fix it. Also
then races for a somewhere. look for wrong base gasket or one that
few seconds and is installed wrong. If engine has been
then dies. spitting back, it may have blown out
the base gasket or a gasket in the
carb.
Engine starts OK, 1) Power valve 1) Replace the power valve.
but then get real blown out by
rough. Lots of spitback up through
black smoke. carb.
2) Slow flooding. 2) See flooding section.
3) Float sunk. 3) Replace float.
(usually caused by
spitback up through
carb.)
4) Venting system 4) Check entire venting system & fix.
problem.

Cold Engine
Drivability . . . . . . .
Problem

CONDITION POSSIBLE CAUSE CORRECTION


Engine stalls when 1) Incorrect choke pull- 1) Readjust the pull-off or
transmission is put into off adjustment. replace if necessary.
gear.
2) Fast idle RPM 2) Speed up the fast idle to
incorrect (too slow) factory specs.
3) Engine running too 3) Check for vacuum leak.
lean because of Flow test carb to check
vacuum leak or dirty jet. jetting.
Hesitation, stalling, 1) Vacuum leak. 1) Check for vacuum leak &
stumbling, flatspot, or fix it.
deadspot during
acceleration: Backfiring 2) Ignition timing 2) Reset timing.
or spitback up through retarded too far.
carb. 3) Accelerator pump 3) Clean out the nozzle tip.
nozzle has dirt in it.
4) Accelerator pump 4) Replace the pump cup.
cup swollen up from
contact with bad gas or
chemicals.
5) Economizer jet too 5) Clean out economizer jet
small or partly blocked. & check the size.
6) Choke pull-off open 6) Adjust the pull-off tighter.
too far.
7) Secondary throttle 7) Fix it.
plates not closing all
the way.
8) Vacuum hoses 8) Connect up right. Be
hooked up wrong. especially careful of the
EGR & Dist. connections:
sometimes the pipe
locations are reversed on
Rochesters.
9) Idle jet partly blocked 9) Clean out the jet & any
with dirt. other dirt that is in there.
10) Distributor timing 10) Check distributor and all
not advancing properly. related systems carefully.
(worn breaker plate, Replace defective parts.
worn shaft, pin hole in
diaphram, crack in
hose, etc.)
Hesitation, deadspot or 1) Defective electric 1) Replace it.
stalling after first mile of assist on choke
warmup. 2) Defective accelerator 2) Replace it.
pump (low output).
3) Float level setting 3) Adjust to factory specs.
very low.
4) Bad ignition 4) Replace it.
condenser.
Periodic backfiring with 1) Plugged heat 1) Inspect and clean
black exhaust smoke: crossover system in passages in intake manifold
Deadspot, flatspot, manifold. and heads. Test heat riser
hesitation, stumbling, valve, replace if defective.
backfiring.
2) Defective source of 2) Check and replace as
hot air up to the necessary: heat shroud
carburetor. duct, temperature sensor,
vacuum door motor,
manifold vacuum supply.

Warm Engine
Drivability . . . . . . .
Problem

POSSIBLE
CONDITION CORRECTION
CAUSE
Hesitation under 1) Vacuum leak 1) Inspect hoses. Route and lead the
light throttle: somewhere, or hoses correctly. Look for leak because
Deadspot & hose off or hooked of wrong base gasket or it was
stumble. to wrong vacuum installed upside down.
fitting.
2) Accelerator 2) Inspect and adjust pump stroke,
pump problems. pump plunger, discharge nozzles and
check valves. Inspect the accelerator
pump, look for swollen pump cup.
3) Float level set 3) Set float to factory specs.
very low.
4) Ignition timing 4) Set to factory specs. Make sure
retarded. advancing correctly.
5) Dirty idle jet or 5) Inspect idle jets. Clean as
economizer jet. necessary.
6) Idle speed set 6) Richen up the idle mixture, reset
too fast & mixture idle speed to factory specs, then lastly
is too lean reset the mixture using the lean drop
(common!). method.
7) Idle cut-off 7) Inspect & fix as necessary.
solenoid not
working, or no
power to it or no
ground to it.
8) Frozen or 8) Inspect & fix as necessary.
binding heated air
inlet (stuck in full
hot or full cold
position).
9) EGR valve 9) Inspect hose routing to EGR valve
stuck on or coming & inspect valve. Replace as
on too early (hose necessary.
on wrong?)
Doggy, runs rough, 1) Choke staying 1) Fix choke or heat source.
lots of black closed or partly
smoke at idle. closed.
2) Slow flooding. 2) See flooding section.
3) Power valve 3) Replace power valve.
blown (caused by
engine spitting
back.)
4) No electricity or 4) Fix cause of no heat source or
heat source to electricity to choke.
choke.
Hesitation under 1) Defective 1) Look for dirt in pump nozzles,
heavy throttle: accelerator pump. swollen cup from bad gas, or check
Deadspot & ball missing or stuck.
stumbles. May
backfire or 2) Metering rods or 2) Inspect and correct.
spitback. power valve
sticking or binding.
3) Vacuum leak. 3) Locate leak and correct.
4) Float level 4) Reset to factory specs.
setting very low.
5) Plugged up fuel 5) Inspect and replace parts as
filter, defective fuel necessary.
pump, or swollen
or kinked lines.
6) Secondary air 6) Check & adjust the secondary air
valve set wrong. valve spring.
7) Ignition timing 7) Set to factory specs. Check for
retarded. proper advancing.
Dies coming up to 1) Bad or 1) Adjust to specs and replace it.
a stop sign, but misadjusted BCDD
idles ok. (if equipped).
2) Bad throttle 2) Check throttle positioner with a
positioner or bad vacuum pump. Replace if defective.
vacuum source to Replace any cracked hoses. Make
it. certain that the vacuum hose is
connected to the correct pipe on carb
or on the thermal switch. Make sure all
related pipes have vacuum.
3) Idle speed and 3) Reset to specs using Recarbco's
mixture incorrectly method. See the adjustment and
adjusted. installation instructions on our website.
4) Loose or 4) Fix or replace the pin.
defective float pin.

Poor
Performance or . . . . . . .
Gas Mileage

CONDITION POSSIBLE CAUSE CORRECTION


No power or 1) Plugged exhaust. 1) Check exhaust. Look for plugged
bad gas catalytic converter, bad muffler baffle,
mileage. kinked or crimped pipe, dirt or other
foreign matter in pipe.
2) Clogged gas tank 2) Remove gas cap & see if performance
vent, or fuel venting improves. If so clean or replace the gas
system. cap. Check the charcoal cannister, hoses
to it & any check valves. Check the
electric vent valve on the carb if there is
one, & make sure it is getting power at
the right time.
3) Ignition timing 3) Check timing at idle and also for full
retarded advance when revved up. Look for bad
or loose hose, hose hooked up to wrong
pipe on distributor, bad thermal switch,
leaking vacuum advance can on the
distributor, a worn breaker plate, worn
distributor shaft, sticky weights, point gap
closed up, etc.
4) Clogged air filter 4) Replace air filter.
5) Choke not opening 5) Fix choke or heat source problem.
6) Secondary not 6) Check the lockout: secondaries won't
opening. open unless choke is coming off all the
way. Check for sticky or bent shaft or
linkage. If air valve type (Rochester),
check the spring tension, the plastic cam,
& metering rods for dragging or sticking.
7) Wrong main jets or 7) Check them. Replace if necessary.
rods
8) Dragging brakes. 8) Fix brake problem.
9) Low tire pressure. 9) Increase tire pressure at least to
factory recommendations.
10) Automatic 10) Diagnose & fix automatic
transmission transmission.
malfunction.
11) Wrong or 11) Replace thermostat.
malfunctioning
thermostat in cooling
system.
12) Blocked or leaking 12) Remove manifold & fix it.
exhaust heat passage
in intake manifold.
13) Defective 13) Diagnose & repair or replace the
accessory (power accessory unit.
steering pump, air
conditioning
compressor, etc.)
causing drag on
engine.
14) Wheels out of 14) Have wheels professionally aligned.
alignment.
15) Poor driving 15) Reduce speed, quick acceleration,
habits. screeching around corners etc.
16) Float level much 16) Set to factory recommendations, &
too high, or float partly check float weight, replace if necessary.
sunk.
17) Ignition problems 17) Do complete tune up & physically
or needs a tune up. inspect the cap, rotor, wires, coil, plugs,
points, etc. in addition to checking on the
scope.

Flooding . . . . . . .

(Note: flooding is gas pouring out uncontrollably, it is NOT hesitation!)

POSSIBLE
CONDITION CORRECTION
CAUSE
Gas pours out when 1) Charcoal 1) Replace the charcoal
engine is turned off. cannister is cannister.
saturated with
gas.
2) Vent valve is 2) Replace the defective valve or
not functioning fix other cause of it's
correctly. malfunctioning (like loose
connection, etc).
3) Kinked hoses 3) Replace the kinked hoses with
in venting system. correct kind.
4) Stuck or 4) Replace the check valves.
blocked check
valves in the vent
hoses or
elsewhere in the
system.
5) Gas tank vent 5) Fix it or replace the gas cap if
is blocked. vent is in the cap.
6) Gas line 6) This causes the fuel to expand
located too close & be forced past the needle &
to a heat source seat. Also, fuel can boil in the
(such as a carb if there are improper or
radiator hose or missing gaskets or spacers
exhaust manifold). between the carb & manifold. A
heat riser stuck in the closed
position will also cause boiling
and flooding.
Gas pours out when the 1) Dirt stuck on tip 1) Clean the tip off carefully or
engine is running. of the needle & replace the needle & seat and
seat. clean the entire fuel system out.
Note 1: often removing
the carb from the 2) Idle speed is 2) Reduce the idle speed to
manifold & shaking it set too fast. factory specs. If it will not idle
hard a couple of times slowly, the mixture is set too
will effect a cure. lean, or the idle solenoid is not
functioning right, or there is a
Note 2: if procedure in vacuum leak somewhere (usually
note 1 doesn't cure it, not in the carb).
the problems is almost 3) Idle solenoid is 3) Check for power & ground up
always dirt or bad gas not functioning. to the solenoid. Check the
getting into the carb. operation of the solenoid. Look
Carb will then need to be for dirt stuck in the solenoid or
disassembled to fix it. the passageways to it.
4) Fuel pump 4) Check pressure. Use a
pressure too high. regulator to control the pressure
or put on a new pump (don't use
high pressure type).
5) Fuel pressure 5) Control pulsing with a
is fluctuating or regulator.
"pulsing"
(common on
Colts, Mitsubishi
& other Chrysler
imports).
6) Float is heavy 6) Replace float. Is often caused
or sunk. by spit-back up through carb.
7) Gas is very 7) Clean bad gas out of carb.
gummy, old, or Clean out of fuel system. Use
has too much only good quality gas.
alcohol or other
chemicals in it.
8) Sugar in the 8) Clean out the entire fuel
gas. system.
9) Choke not 9) Check cause of choke failure,
working. choke pull-off failure, or loss of
heat to the choke.
10) Needle not 10) Try tapping the fuel inlet or
seated properly needle & seat area with the
during initial fill. handle of a screwdriver. If this
doesn't work, unbolt carb from
manifold and shake it hard a
couple of times.
11) On Mikuni 11) This is caused by the carb
carb, the overturn being overturned or turned on its
ball fell out of side. Remove top and reinstall
place. the ball.
12) On carbs with 12) Excessive adjustments have
externally caused the seal to break.
adjustable float Replace the seals.
levels.

Hesitation During
. . . . . . .
Acceleration

CONDITION POSSIBLE CAUSE CORRECTION


Engine stalls when 1) Incorrect choke pull- 1) Readjust the pull-off or
transmission is put into off adjustment. replace if necessary.
gear.
2) Fast idle RPM 2) Speed up the fast idle to
incorrect (too slow) factory specs.
3) Engine running too 3) Check for vacuum leak.
lean because of Flow test carb to check
vacuum leak or dirty jet. jetting.
Hesitation, stalling, 1) Vacuum leak. 1) Check for vacuum leak &
stumbling, flatspot, or fix it.
deadspot during
acceleration: Backfiring 2) Ignition timing 2) Reset timing.
or spitback up through retarded too far.
carb. 3) Accelerator pump 3) Clean out the nozzle tip.
nozzle has dirt in it.
4) Accelerator pump 4) Replace the pump cup.
cup swollen up from
contact with bad gas or
chemicals.
5) Economizer jet too 5) Clean out economizer jet
small or partly blocked. & check the size.
6) Choke pull-off open 6) Adjust the pull-off tighter.
too far.
7) Secondary throttle 7) Fix it.
plates not closing all
the way.
8) Vacuum hoses 8) Connect up right. Be
hooked up wrong. especially careful of the
EGR & Dist. connections:
sometimes the pipe
locations are reversed on
Rochesters.
9) Idle jet partly blocked 9) Clean out the jet & any
with dirt. other dirt that is in there.
10) Distributor timing 10) Check distributor and all
not advancing properly. related systems carefully.
(worn breaker plate, Replace defective parts.
worn shaft, pin hole in
diaphram, crack in
hose, etc.)
Hesitation, deadspot or 1) Defective electric 1) Replace it.
stalling that only seems assist on choke
to occur after the first
mile of warmup. 2) Defective accelerator 2) Replace it.
pump (low output).
3) Float level setting 3) Adjust to factory specs.
very low.
4) Bad ignition 4) Replace it.
condenser.
5) Plugged heat 5) Inspect and clean
crossever system in passages in the intake
manifold. manifold and heads. Test
heat riser valve, replace if
defective.
6) Defective source of 6) Check and replace as
hot air up to the necessary: heat shroud
carburetor. duct, temperature sensor,
vacuum door moter,
manifold vacuum supply.
7) Defective thermal 7) Check all thermal
switch. switches, especially those
connected with the
distributor, EGR, & vacuum
motors in the air cleaner
housing.
Common Problems
Lots of folks have been emailing me with some common problems, so here are some
tips for fixing these common problems.

Gas is flowing out of places it shouldn't.

This is most likely due to a bad float valve, bad float, or excessive fuel pressure. The
first step is to check the fuel pressure, which should be between 4 psi and 7 psi. If the
fuel pressure is correct (or you have no reason to believe that it has changed on an
existing setup such as an old stock mechanical pump), either the float has sunk, or there
is a problem with a float valve. If you have black nitrophyl plastic floats on a carb over
5 years old, the float may be soaking up gas and sinking. Also, if the carb is near, or
over, 5 years old, the float valves (inlet needle and seat assemblies) may need
replacing. Float valves have viton rubber tips (most cases) and rubber o-rings that can
go bad, especially when they sit around for long periods, as on an old car that hasn't
been driven, or a boat stored for the winter. I suggest you purchase a Holley rebuild kit
and rebuild the entire carb, because the cost of two float valves is almost as much as the
cost of the entire rebuild kit.

How to hook up electric chokes.

Many Holleys come with electric chokes. I don't like them. This is due to the fact that
they cool down faster than necessary when you shut the engine down. Hot air chokes
are better, but if you want to use an electric choke, here is what you need to know.

Make sure there is airflow through the choke spring housing. This is the most common
error people make, and it ends up burning the bi-metal spring. Holleys draw air through
the choke spring housing to keep the spring from overheating. You must make sure
that there is a clear path for the carb to draw a little bit of vacuum through the housing
(there is a small vacuum passage behind the housing), and that the air gets filtered
somehow, either with an external filter, or through a hookup to the bottom of the air
filter housing. In the photo below, there is a brass compression fitting at the left. That
is the air inlet to the choke coil housing. This particular one has a little screen in it to
keep out the big debris, but to make it work better, run a copper or aluminum 1/4 metal
tube down to the exhaust manifold to draw in hot air and filter out the big chunks.

You will need a source of 12 volt power to heat up the bi-metal spring. This source
must be energized ONLY when the engine is running, so make sure you don't hook up
your wire to the accessory circuit. This, again, is how many bi-metal springs get burned
up, because there is no airflow through the choke housing when the engine is not
running. The hot side of the 12v wire hooks up to one tab on the choke, and the other
tab of the choke goes to ground, usually one of the choke housing mount screws. I
highly recommend putting a fuse of some sort in the line, because a failure of the bi-
metal spring could cause an overload of the wire and a fire if there is no fuse in there
somewhere, and typically ignition circuits are not fused.

How to switch from automatic chokes to manual chokes.


Automatic chokes and manual chokes do the same basic thing on Holleys, but use
different linkages to do so. See the two photos below. If you swap one for the other,
MAKE SURE you get the corresponding linkage for the end of the throttle shaft,
because auto and manual chokes use different fast idle linkages. Auto chokes have an
open vacuum port on the body of the carb that needs to be plugged/blocked for use with
manual chokes. On manual choke carbs, Holley typically uses a flat adhesive sticker to
block the port, and you can use a piece of duct tape or other strong, flat adhesive backed
tape also. The reason it needs to be flat is that the manual choke structure goes pretty
close to the vacuum port, but not quite onto it in some cases. If you're going from
manual to auto choke, make sure you uncover this port and put the little red cork ring
gasket in there to seal off the fitting to the choke housing.

Automatic Choke and Shaft Linkage


Manual Choke and Shaft Linkage

How to check fuel pump output.

Your carburetor requires 4 to 7 psi of fuel supply at all times, under all conditions.
Many "carburetor" problems are actually fuel delivery problems. Bogging and not
enough power can be caused by too little fuel, and overflowing can be caused by too
much fuel pressure. Before blaming your carburetor for problems you MUST check the
fuel delivery while driving under whatever condition you use the vehicle. This means
rigging up a fuel pressure gauge outside the passenger compartment and going for a
drive. If your fuel pump doesn't deliver 4-7 psi at all times to the supply line at the
carburetor, then you need to examine/replace ALL the lines and hoses (this includes the
hoses at the tank) and possibly replace the fuel pump if it isn't delivering enough fuel.

Vacuum ports and what they do.


Not all Holleys have the same ports, but you can tell by location and size what each one
does. Any port at the very bottom of the carb (in the aluminum baseplate) will pull
manifold vacuum, which is strongest at high vacuum situations such as idle and slowing
down, and weakest at low vacuum situations such as wide-open-throttle (WOT).
Common manifold vacuum connections at the bottom of the carb are PCV (usually a
3/8" diameter tube) and EGR/distributor retard/smog device hookups (usually smaller
tubes under the primary fuel bowl). The other type of vacuum connection on a Holley
is ported vacuum, which is weak at idle, strong at cruise, and weak at WOT. This one is
always (if supplied at all-some competition carbs don't have this port) on the passenger
(US) side of the carb, above the idle mixture screw, and is generally used for distributor
vacuum advance.

How to switch from vacuum secondaries to mechanical, and from


mechanical to vacuum.

You can't!

Vacuum secondary carburetors have vacuum passages built into the body of the carb to
provide vacuum to the secondary diaphragm, which operates the secondaries when there
is enough airflow going through the primaries. Vacuum secondary carbs do NOT have
separate secondary accelerator pumps, and never have had them. There is no provision
in a vacuum secondary-equipped carburetor for an accelerator pump passage.

Most mechanical secondary carbs have passages for secondary accelerator pumps, and
none have vacuum passages for vacuum secondaries. Therefore, it is impossible, due to
the passages built into the body of the mechanical secondary carburetors, to switch a
mechanical secondary carb to vacuum secondaries.

Please don't tell me how you can put a screw into the linkage of a vacuum secondary
carb to make it mechanical. This does NOT work properly, and will only cause
headaches. If you want a mechanical secondary carb, you must start out with a
mechanical secondary carb.

Boats and other seasonal engines.

Boats (and other seasonal vehicles) have a unique problem in that most are stored in the
off-season, and the fuel is left to dry out in the carb. Rubber parts, including float
valves, accelerator pump diaphragms and power valves, can dry out and stiffen. When
fuel is added at the start of the season, these components can fail, causing leaks, fuel
level and richness problems, including loading up, plug fouling, and overflowing
(which can be very dangerous on a boat).

If you experience any type of carburetion problem on a boat or other seasonal engine, I
recommend a full cleaning and rebuild of your Holley carburetor and replacement of all
rubber fuel lines immediately and then each season afterwards. I have experienced the
results of dried out fuel in the small idle passages of my own carb, so you will need to
fully disassemble and clean all the passages on the carb, because simply replacing the
parts without cleaning the carb will not make the result 100%. While it may be
expensive, a boat that wont run on your first outing of the season can be even worse,
considering the amount of prep time, transportation cost, and how much your family
will be let down if the boat wont run right.

Inconsistent idle speed.

Many people lately have been asking me about idle problems where they will set the
idle at 800 or so, then when they drive the car or boat, the idle only comes back to 1500
or so. When they blip the throttle, it will come back to 800. This problem is very likely
NOT the carburetor, but the linkage from the pedal to the carb, especially if the car (or
boat) has a wire cable linkage.

To diagnose the problem, disconnect the linkage at the carburetor, and manually move
the throttle with the engine running. If it comes back to the idle set point, then the
problem is in the linkage, which will require repair or replacement. If it doesnt come
back to the idle set point, the problem is in the carb, possibly in the chokes fast idle
linkage. If the linkage is dirty, spray it with carb cleaner. If you're using a spacer or
adapter, those can cause interference with the throttle plates, and will need to be fixed.

Occasionally, an engine will have a poor ground, and electricity will seek ground
through the throttle cable, making it hot enough to melt the plastic housing. If you see
evidence of a hot throttle cable, be sure to check your engine to chassis ground.

Inconsistent idle speed can also be caused by a sticky mechanical advance in your
distributor, a particular problem on boats, where corrosion is a major factor. A visual
inspection of the advance mechanism is highly recommended.

Another cause of inconsistent idle speed is sticky throttle valves, especially the
secondaries on vacuum secondary carbs. Stickiness can be caused by excessive wear,
but is most likely corrosion or gumminess from disuse, as in boats and other seasonal
engines. The secondaries are held closed by two devices: The spring inside the vacuum
actuator, and the link that goes from the primary throttle lever to the closer slot on the
secondary throttle valve. In some cases, the actuator spring is relatively light, and
doesn't exert much force. If the closer link is not bent just right to touch the slot enough
to fully close the secondaries, you will experience a situation where the idle speed will
not come down after the secondaries are used. You will need to clean the throttle plate
and/or rebend the closer link to get the secondaries closed properly.

Sooty spark plugs and fouling.

Having spark plugs foul out with dry sooty deposits is a direct result of excessive fuel.
This is usually caused by two things: Improper fuel level and/or blown power valves.
The fuel level problem could be a misadjusted float, excessive fuel pressure, bad float
valve, or bad float. If the fuel level is ok (just licking at the bottom of the sight hole),
read more below on blown power valves.

NEW!

Holley has really updated their website, and has now included installation instructions
for you to download, print, and read. These are very informative, with lots of photos. If
you're working on your carb, print one out, and you'll get a lot of answers. The first
page of listings has the sheet for the common 600 cfm LIST 1850, and the 750 vacuum
secondary LIST 3310. The second page has a bunch of double pumpers, starting with
the LIST 4776. Here is the Holley link:

http://holley.com/TechService/Instructions.asp

Common Questions and Answers:

Question: Is the Holley spreadbore better than my Rochester Quadrajet?


Answer: Not at all. The Holley spreadbore carb is a poor imitation of the Rochester
Quadrajet. Here's why.

The Rochester Quadrajet is a modern design, and uses some very forward-thinking
features such as a central float bowl with one float, vacuum-operated metering rods for
power enrichment, an air-door controlled secondary, and no gaskets below fuel level. A
couple of disadvantages are its sliding cup accelerator pump, and hard-to-find parts.

So, how does this relate to Holleys, since this is a Holley page? The design of the
Holley spreadbore replacement leaves out many of the good features Holleys are
famous for, and leaves off most of the good features of Rochester Quadrajets.

The Holley spreadbore lacks the following features, which are standard on its
squarebores: Externally adjustable floats, standard accelerator pump nozzles, standard
gaskets.

All Holleys lack the following features, standard on a Rochester Quadrajet: Metering
rods for power enrichment, air-door controlled secondary.

Since the Holley is lacking in so many things that the Quadrajet excels at, I recommend
to anyone who is thinking of putting a Holley spreadbore on any engine: Don't! If you
have a spreadbore intake, use a Rochester Quadrajet. If you really want a Holley,
change the intake manifold to use a squarebore Holley. Don't use adapters, either!
They are proven power robbers.

Basic Theory
Carburetors are really just dumb fuel and air mixers. Any source of airflow through a
carb will draw fuel. This is why a carb for a 460 c.i. engine will also work on a 260 c.i.
engine. The performance may not be optimum due to signal strength or restrictions, but
if the jetting is close for one, it will be close for the other. 2 examples: I took the 600
cfm carb off my 390 truck and put it on my 4 cylinder Pinto. The jetting was right on!
My Pop took the 390 cfm Holley off my Pinto and put it on his 390 powered 62
Thunderbird. The mixture was right on. This is why it is important to know what jets
your carb came with, and to start out with those jets.

The factory determines jet sizes using several factors on each carburetor, including the
air bleed size, the venturi size, booster venturi size and shape, and the power valve
channel restrictions. Street carbs and performance carbs of the same cfm rating will be
jetted differently, too, so you can't always use the jet rating for different models of the
same cfm. Even upgraded models of the same carb will have different jet sizes. So if
you find that your car will not run properly with a jet that is within 5 sizes one way or
the other of the factory recommendation, you have problems somewhere else, like a bad
or misadjusted float, bad needle and seat, a vacuum leak, a dirty carburetor, or a plain
old worn-out carburetor.

My first recommendation is to BUY A BOOK OR TWO ON HOLLEY CARBS, or


YOUR PARTICULAR BRAND! You are going to need at least one for the photos and
part numbers. I own at least 9 different books on Holley carbs, several general repair
manuals that cover the Holley, and have cut out many articles from Car Craft, Hot Rod,
and other magazines.

We now have an association with Amazon.com, and have selected a few Holley books
for you to choose from. Click here to check out the books and videos:

BOB2000 book and video store


Here's an important word of advice:

Do NOT buy cheap rebuild kits for your Holley carb! All the cheap stuff is junk,
especially the needle and seat assemblies, and you will not save any money in the
long run! Some of these off-brand kits actually cost MORE than the Holley brand
kits!

One thing you CAN do to save money when buying Holley rebuild kits is to buy a kit
from a SIMILAR carb in the Holley line. Example: I run a really obscure 0-8007 390
cfm 4 barrel on my Pinto. The kits for this carb are expensive because Holley doesn't
sell very many. BUT, most (if not all) of the parts in the 8007 kit are identical to those in
a number 1850 Holley kit, the very common 600 cfm 4 barrel. That kit is the cheapest.
The same goes for the 428 CJ carb on my Fairlane. The specific kit for it is
exhorbitantly priced, but all the parts are the same as the venerable 3310. The things
you really need to watch for are the type of accelerator pump passage used, and the
baseplate to body gasket, which varies according to cfm rating. Always make sure you
get the proper replacement by matching the new one to the old one. Sometimes, Holley
will give you the WRONG BASEPLATE GASKET in a kit. This happened to me once
on an 850 double pumper.

When buying kits, check into the price of the Trick Kit. It has all the parts of a Rebuild
Kit, and comes with a selection of pump cams, squirters, and other useful stuff that the
Rebuild Kits don't have. The price for the Trick Kit is usually not that much more than
the Rebuild Kit.
Carb Theory

There are several circuits in your carburetor. Each circuit flows at different times, and
some circuits flow when you think they don't.

Floats:

Most floats on Holleys are externally adjustable, except the Quadrajet replacement
carbs, series 4175. The standard Holley has a sight hole on the passenger side. In order
to set the floats on a Holley with externally adjustable floats, remove the sight plug with
the engine off. Start the engine. If the gas just pours out all over the place, shut the
engine off right away before you start a fire. Your floats are obviously too high. The
way to set standard Holley floats is to unlock the screw with a large flat tip screwdriver,
then move the 5/8 hex nut clockwise (CW) to lower float level, or counter-clockwise
(CCW) to raise the float level. You're actually moving the whole float valve assembly
up and down in the float bowl.

Click here for Holley's webpage on how to adjust floats.

The proper level of fuel is for the fuel to just touch the bottom of the sight hole without
running out. Clear sight plugs are available, but I can no longer recommend using them,
as they have a tendency to break off right at the o-ring.

If the fuel does not just trickle out of the sight hole when you rock the car back and
forth lightly, adjust the float up until it does. If you have a problem with gas just rushing
out all over the place, or if you have a carb that drips fuel from the booster venturis at
idle or when the engine is off, then you likely have a bad needle and seat assembly.
These are removable from the top without having to remove the float bowl, a very fine
feature of the Holley.

You'll hear this often from me: Do NOT use float valves from anyone but Holley, or
maybe the Carb Shop, Barry Grant, or some other reputable racing supplier. The float
valves that come in non-Holley rebuild kits available at auto parts stores are JUNK!!!!!!
They often require you to discard the Holley nut and lockscrew, and they often have
strange adustment procedures. DO NOT USE THESE!

Do not move the secondary float bowl to the primary and vice versa. The rear float bowl
level is lower than the front to keep fuel from pouring out into the carb throat under
heavy braking. If you have a car that accelerates well, Holley offers vent whistles and
jet extensions that solve the problems that occur during heavy acceleration and braking.

Idle:

The idle circuit supplies fuel when the throttle plates are open only slightly. Mixture
screws let you adjust the mixture of this circuit. On a Holley, the fuel comes out a little
hole below the throttle plates in the baseplate. There is an idle circuit in the rear barrels
of your Holley, too. Most are not adjustable, but Holley put it there to keep the fuel
flowing through the rear bowls so it doesn't get stale just sitting there. This is why you
can't turn off the fuel flow to the secondaries. Doing so will mess up the metering
system by causing a lean condition.
Idle circuit metering is accomplished by three things: Idle feed restrictions, idle air
bleeds, and the idle mixture screws. Sometimes you can see the idle feed restrictors in
the metering block. In some cases, they are installed in the bottom of the emulsion
tubes, and require surgery to remove. This is not recommended, except for experts.

Transition:

The transition circuit supplies fuel between the idle and the main metering system. This
is a small slot above the closed throttle plate in the baseplate. The amount of fuel is
determined by the idle feed restrictions.

You can put restrictors in the body of the carb to limit the flow of fuel through the
transition circuit after the idle feed restrictions. I made a pair from two 10-32 Allen head
setscrews with a properly sized hole drilled in the center. I then drilled and tapped the
proper passage in the carb, and inserted the restrictors. Now, I have an adjustable
transition circuit that I can lean out. Richening the transfer circuit will require enlarging
the idle feed restrictors.

When the idle and transition circuits work:

Depending upon the size of your engine and the rpm's it is running at, you can have
flow from the idle and transition circuits well into the higher rpms. This is due to the
restriction of the venturis. If you have a too-small carb, even at wide open throttle, you
will have manifold vacuum. Manifold vacuum is what pulls fuel from the lower parts of
the carb, where the idle feed and transition slots are. In the lower parts of cruise, your
idle and transition slots will be providing a small amount of fuel. Any time you see
manifold vacuum, the idle feed and transition slots will be flowing fuel, because of the
vacuum under the throttle plates.

Main Metering:

The booster venturi (that thing sticking out into the throat of the carb) supplies the
major portion of the fuel at cruise and power levels. Metering is accomplished by the
main jets and air bleeds, and enrichment comes from the power valve.

Accelerator Pump:

Supplies fuel under pressure to compensate for losses in fuel flow when the airflow
signal to the booster venturis diminishes when you punch it from a standstill, or when
the airflow goes away during changes in engine load.

In Holleys, there are two pump check valves:

The inlet check is above the pump diaphragm, and may consist of a steel check ball held
in by a bail, or a rubber umbrella valve. The better of the two is the rubber umbrella
valve, since it is normally closed and provides a quicker shot, because it doesn't need to
seat itself like the ball does. Just be careful not to put these rubber valves into harsh
cleaning chemicals, as some rebuild kits don't come with a new valve.
The outlet check on most Holleys is below the squirter. It consists of either a small ball
held down by a steel cylinder, or a sharpened steel cylinder. Either is ok, but a small ball
by itself is not enough weight to prevent siphoning by the airflow going through the
carb throat. I've seen this on my own carbs, when I didn't realize there was a heavier
weight to go on top of the small ball.

Spread bore carbs do not use an outlet check under the nozzle, but rather have one in the
metering block. In order to prevent fuel from being siphoned from the passage between
the metering block and outlet, they use a special anti-pullover nozzle, which prevents
airflow from coming close to the outlet and sucking the fuel out.

Power System:

Activated by the power valve in a Holley, this circuit supplies extra fuel to richen up the
main metering system. This is a vacuum signalled valve that simply opens and closes at
a preset amount of manifold vacuum. The rating is stamped on the valve: 2.5 up to 10.5
inches of mercury manifold vacuum. The lower the number, the later the valve opens,
the higher the number, the earlier the valve opens. The metering for this system is
provided by the two little holes underneath the power valve, called "PVCR's" or Power
Valve Channel Restrictions.

Replacing the primary power valve with a plug:

If I could, I'd put a electrical shock device in your mouse right now to deter you from
even thinking about plugging a primary power valve on just about any application.
Think of the power valve as a switch that richens the mixture for heavy loads and
accleration. If you plug that power valve, you will need to increase the size of your main
jets for proper full power mixture to the point that your cruise mixture will be so rich
that your engine will actually foul spark plugs. Too much gas is just as bad as not
enough gas. The engine will be sluggish at low rpms, and just won't run right. If you
have problems with power valves blowing out, fix the problem, or install one of the
available power valve protectors. Summit sells one for about $8. All 4010 and 4011
Holleys, and many newer 4150 and 4160 series carbs come from the factory with this
power valve blowout protector.

It is, however, recommended to plug SECONDARY power valves, due to the


inconsistencies encountered with WOT, low vacuum operation, which is when the
secondaries are open. Basically, the only time the secondaries are open is at Wide Open
Throttle (WOT). At WOT, vacuum is very low, and the power valve is open, so it's
really a waste to even run one in the secondaries. In the vast majority of cases, you will
need to jet up on the secondaries when plugging a secondary power valve.

Power enrichment on other carbs:

The power system on Carter/Edelbrock 4-barrel carburetors and Rochester Quadrajets is


accomplished using tapered metering rods that run inside the main jets. The rods are
held down by high manifold vacuum, which makes the fuel opening in the main jet
small. As manifold vacuum drops under power, a spring under the metering rod holder
raises the rod out of the main jet. Since the rod is tapered, as it moves out of the main
jet, the fuel opening gets bigger, resulting in a richer mixture. This system is very
effective and easy to tune, since the rod tapers can be changed and different springs
installed for varied rates of movement. And just for the record, I don't agree with
Holley's new advertising about the drawbacks of metering rods. There really are none. I
wish Holley would use them instead of power valves, because metering rods supply a
gradual increase in richness, rather than a sudden one, like what happens when a power
valve opens all at once. And, metering rods don't blow out like power valves do
occasionally.

Double Pumpers and Gas Mileage (or lack thereof...)

Have you heard people complain about the gas mileage they get with performance-type
double pumper carbs? There is a reason that the 0-4776 through 0-4781 double pumpers
get bad gas mileage. It's the jets! Surprised? Holley sizes the jets and air bleeds on these
carbs so that they run on the rich side at cruise speeds. They make more power this way,
at the detriment of gas mileage. These are competition carbs, and they are supposed to
work this way. Why don't we just put leaner jets in them to get mileage? Because the
PVCR's are small, and under power conditions, the carb will supply an overall lean
condition. What you can do is lean the jets out, then enlarge the PVCR's to compensate
for power situations.

The way to do this scientifically is to measure the diameters of the openings of stock
jets and PVCR's using drill bit diameters. Then calculate the total area of all the
openings, and add them up.

A = 3.1415 x dia x dia / 4

Decrease the main jets for proper cruise mixture, and enlarge the PVCR's until you get
back to the original area of all the openings. This way, your cruise mixture will give you
good gas mileage, and under power, the engine will have proper mixture.

Graphical interpretation of these systems:

These bar graphs (not to scale) illustrate the fuel flowing through your Holley at
different stages. Knowing what circuit is flowing at what time is very important to your
tuning ability.
Vacuum Secondaries

Vacuum secondaries allow a person to run a carb that most people believe might be too
big for a particular engine. By playing with various secondary springs, you can tailor
the secondary opening point and rate of your carb, and can even make them to where
they don't open all the way. This allows you to use a carb that might be too big for your
application. The diaphragm housing with the removable top is highly recommended.
Trying to align the screw holes while keeping the spring compressed is a quick way to
pinch off and tear the diaphragm. One or two torn diaphragms is enough to pay for the
quick change kit. I know this from experience.

On some Holley's, there is a steel check ball in the passage that actuates the diaphragm.
Leave it there. If you take it out, the secondaries are likely to flop open very quickly and
give you a bog.

If your vehicle is heavy, like a motorhome or 4x4, you should always use vacuum
secondaries, because you need to be able to keep the secondaries closed during cruise.
Since these vehicles are so heavy and often use high rpm rearend gears, your carburetor
opening is often so large that many double pumpers will open the secondaries during
cruise, causing horrible gas mileage. With vacuum secondaries, you can change the
secondary spring to keep the secondaries closed for better gas mileage, yet still have
them open during passing and hillclimbing.

A tip about vacuum secondary diaphragms


Holley makes about 4 different diaphragms. Even though one may look just like
another, the link length can vary. This makes your secondary opening rate all messed
up, because the spring is not acting on the diaphragm correctly. If your link is too long,
the secondaries won't open all the way, no matter what spring you have installed. If your
link is too short, the spring may not even touch the top of the diaphragm, which is not
good.

How to know if your vacuum secondaries are opening

You can tell if your secondaries are opening by keeping them shut with a spring or other
means. Test drive the vehicle. If performance is worse with the secondaries held shut,
then they were opening when operating normally. Winging the engine in neutral does
not work! Vacuum secondaries operate off engine rpm and load, not just rpm, and there
just isn't enough airflow in a no-load situation to open the vacuum secondaries.

Now that you've got the basics down, here is how you tell what circuit needs to be
richer or leaner. You put an instrument in the exhaust flow that tells you graphically
whether the engine is lean or rich. You then put a vacuum gauge on the engine to tell
you what circuit is working at the particular time that you are lean or rich.

Simple!

The first instrument is known as an O2 (oxygen) sensor. These sensors are used in
electronically fuel injected cars as a signal telling the computer whether to supply more
or less fuel. O2 sensors create their own electricity in the presence of heat and oxygen.
You simply put the sensor in a hot spot in your exhaust flow, then read the electrical
output.

There are a couple of ways to put O2 sensors in your exhaust: The trick way, and the
cheap way.

The Trick Way

Buy an air/fuel ratio monitor from Edelbrock or K&N. Summit (1-800-230-3030) sells
the Edelbrock system for about $130. This comes with an O2 sensor, weld-on bung, and
a display panel with yellow, green, and red LED lights representing lean, good, and rich
mixtures.

Racer Wholesale (1-800-886-7223) sells several different air/fuel ratio monitors. One
has two channels for dual exhausts, and another has rich/lean and injector duty cycle for
you FI guys.

The Cheap Way

Buy a single wire O2 sensor at your local parts house, make your own bung, and read
the voltage with a digital voltmeter. The sensor that I bought is a Standard brand,
number SG-12. The threads on this sensor are the same as a small-block Chevy gasket-
style spark plug, so the bung can be made from one of those spark plug anti-foul
adapters. Other O2 sensors use the large diameter threads of 18mm big Ford spark
plugs. Just cut and fishmouth the adapter so that the sensor sticks into the exhaust flow.
You need to put the sensor as close as possible to the engine so it gets hot and stays hot.
Just make sure you route the wire so it doesn't get burned by the hot exhaust pipe. Weld
the bung to the pipe, then drill and file the hole to clear the sensor.

Since the purpose of this sensor is just a guide to help you tune your carb, not run a fuel
injection computer, if you can't get the sensor really close to the engine, don't worry,
because it will still work for your purpose. All that will happen is that your reading may
go away during periods of idling. On the same subject, don't worry about using a
heated sensor, as the expense and complications involved are not worth it for carburetor
tuning. Remember, your eyes are using this data, and if it stops for a while, no harm is
done!

Sensor installed in Pinto exhaust.

Sensor and welded bung:


Once you have the sensor installed and wiring run up to the inside of the car, attach a
digital voltmeter (you really should have one of your own, but you can sometimes
borrow these from friends if you don't have one) to the sensor and a good body ground.
The sensor is positive. The readings you'll get once the sensor has heated up will be
from 1.1 volts (1100 millivolts, or mv) down to about 100 mv. The high readings are
rich, the low readings are lean. The perfect mixture for cruise is 400 mv. I have found
my car to run well at about 700-800 mv. Once it gets below that, it tends to get into a
lean misfire. Your results may vary.

Here is a general idea at what the O2 sensor voltage output looks like. As you can see,
the slope around 400mv, which is 14.7:1, or perfect combustion, is very steep. This is
why only computerized fuel injection systems can really hold anything close to 400mv.
If you're wondering about how a sensor can read oxygen content in rich mixtures where
there is no extra oxygen, the sensor begins to act as a temperature sensor above 400mv.
Vacuum gauges

You will need a gauge to read the manifold vacuum on your engine. The more accurate
the gauge, the better your results will be. The manifold vacuum is measured at the base
of the carb or on the intake manifold somewhere. Don't tap into just one runner, though,
as sometimes this will give funny readings. You need to check the signal that sees all the
cylinders. Most Holleys have a manifold vacuum port in the front on the passenger side
under the primary float bowl.

Road Tuning

Start by taking your carb apart and writing down the sizes of the jets, the actuation point
of the power valve, and the size of the accelerator pump squirter. Put it all back together,
check for leaks, then drive it until the engine is warm. In order to get good readings, you
will need to drive at a constant speed of 45-55 mph, accelerate lightly, and accelerate
heavily.

Idle

The best way to set the idle mixture is to lean the carb out until the vacuum just starts to
drop, then richen the mixture by about 1/4 turn. If you have a bit of a stumble in very
light, low speed operation, sometimes it helps to richen it up by another 1/4 turn.

If you are starting your adjustments fresh, begin at about 2 turns out. Depending upon
if you have a regular carb or a smog carb, your adjustment can be lean when screwing in
(normal) or rich going in (smog style). The way to tell the difference is the smog carb
will have a little sticker on the metering block telling you it goes opposite of normal,
and the smog carb will have blunt screws rather than the pointed ones on a regular carb.
If you have a carb with a normal system where the mixture leans as you turn the screws
in, then when you screw them in almost to a light seating, the engine should die.

On a regular, standard idle circuit Holley, turning the idle mixture screws all the way in
should kill the engine. If your idle mixture screws do not respond to adjustments, you
may have several different problems. The most common is using the wrong carburetor
for the application. Smog carbs with reverse mixture screws (these are the ones with the
little decals, telling you to turn the screws in for richer mixtures) only have a small band
of adjustment built in. Smog carbs work well on stock engines only, and you can't
expect them to work well on a modified engine, especially one with a lopey cam.

Another common cause of non-responsive idle mixture screws is having too much
(more than .040 inch) of the idle transfer circuit exposed. The idle circuit allows a very
small amount of finely metered fuel into the engine. By exposing the transfer circuit
too much, the gross feed of fuel coming out of the transfer circuit overpowers the fine
amount coming out of the idle ports. This is akin to adding a squirt gun's flow into a
garden hose's flow...the fine amount of the squirt gun is so insignificant compared to the
garden hose, that there is no way that adjusting the flow of the squirt gun will make any
difference. There are several ways to fix this problem:

1. If your engine is worn, or has a big vacuum leak, you should fix those problems
before trying to crutch your carb. Sometimes, with worn engines or one with a vacuum
leak, the carb must be opened quite a bit just to get the engine to run.

2. Buy the right sized carb! If you're trying to use a 600 cfm carb on a lopey-cammed
460, then you must open the primaries too far into the transfer slots just to get enough
air into the engine to get it to idle. A larger carb on this example would have a larger
throttle plate, which would need to opened less to allow the engine to idle.

3. Open the secondaries a bit, and close the primaries a like amount. This will allow
more air in, without exposing quite so much of either primary or secondary transfer
slots.

4. If opening the secondaries doesn't work, then you may have to drill small holes (1 per
plate) in the primary throttle plates to allow air in while the plates cover the transfer
slots. This is a trial and error procedure, so start small, about 1/16 inch. You should not
have to go much larger than 3/16 inch. Drill on the side opposite of the transfer slots, to
help keep this added airflow away from the idle ports and transfer slots.

5. Check for a blown power valve. See the section on power valves below.

If you notice a lean surge or throttle tip-in stumble due to an excessively lean idle, and
you can't get the idle richened up, you may have a clog in the primary OR secondary
idle systems, or both. Most people don't know that there is an idle system on the
secondary side of the four barrel Holley to prevent the fuel from getting stale. If the
secondary idle system is clogged up, no amount of cleaning on the primaries will get the
thing to idle correctly. You must clean BOTH the primary and secondary idle systems.
And since those circuits are very small, small amounts of debris or even varnish from
disuse will clog the tiny passages.

Main Jetting

Going down a flat road at a rate of about 45 mph or higher will give you a good
indication of your main jet sizing. Shoot for between 400 mv to about 700 mv. Since
carburetors are not as exact as computer controlled electronic fuel injection, keeping at
the perfect 400 mv will be tough. You always want to go a bit rich, as excessively lean
mixtures will cause damage to your engine, create pollution, and give you bad gas
mileage and performance.

You can do this without a meter, but it's a bit tougher. Start with the factory jetting and
proper float levels. Drive it around for a while, noting if the engine surges at highway
speeds. Take a look at the plugs. If they are sooty, you may need to lean out the main
jets. If the plugs are white, you may need to richen the main jetting. Start stepping the
jets up or down, one step at a time, and drive the car around for a day or two. Do not
make large changes on your jetting. You can't just throw any jets in there because you
think it needs to go one way or the other. It takes time to get it right, and you must
change jets one number at a time.

Secondary Jetting

This is a much more difficult task to tame, due to the acceleration most vehicles provide
when the secondaries are open. When the car is acclerating hard, it is difficult to read
any gauges, therefore, I can only recommend the trail and error, or dragstrip method to
jet secondaries. Go by the seat of your pants or take the car to a dragstrip to work on
the secondary jetting. If you, or a spotter, can see puffs of black smoke when the
secondaries open, then it's too rich. That's about all the advice I can offer.

If your carburetor has the small metering plate inside the secondary bowl, you can
change to a secondary metering block, with screw-in jets, using a secondary metering
block conversion kit, which does not come with provision for a secondary power valve.
Secondary power valves are really not necessary anyhow, and just add complexity and
failure points.

Power Valve

Once you have the main jets set, it is time to play with power valves. Going up a slight
incline at highway speeds, or accelerating slowly at highway speeds, you will notice the
vacuum reading falling. As it falls, it will come to the opening point of your power
valve. You can tell when the power valve opens because the meter will go lean for a
while, then the valve opens, and the meter begins to show rich. You'll probably notice
the power increase right when the power valve opens. I can tell exactly which power
valve I have in my car by the vacuum reading when the lean misfire goes away under
light loads. About 700 mv to 900 mv is a good reading for light loads with the power
valve open.

If your PVCR's are too small, the meter won't go up high enough, and power will suffer
because the engine is still too lean. You can drill out the PVCR's with a small drill bit in
a fingertip drill bit holder. If the PVCR's are too big, you will see a big jump in the
meter readings, and maybe a puff of black smoke. My Pinto's PVCR's were way too big,
so I found a kit to let you install little Mikuni pilot jets into the metering block of your
Holley to make the PVCR's smaller. The company went out of business after the owner
passed away, so if anyone knows of someone still selling this kit, let me know!

Now that you have the power valve mixture correct, try some different power valves. I
like a 10.5 in my Pinto, because it pulls about 14 inches of Mercury going down the
road, and the 10.5 comes in pretty quickly when going up slight inclines.

Tip: Use a power valve that is about 2 inches of mercury below the LOWEST
manifold vacuum reading you get on cruise and idle (in gear for automatics). If the
power valve flutters open at idle, it can act as a pump, and push extra fuel into the main
well, causing a drip from the booster venturis. If the power valve opens a lot while
you're driving down the road, your gas mileage will suffer.

Blown Power Valve

You may notice a bad power valve because you will not see the jump from lean to rich
when your vacuum gauge gets to the power valve setting. You will see a rich mixture at
cruise, when the power valve should be closed. You may also notice a badly BLOWN
power valve as an overly rich condition at idle. This occurs only if the diaphragm has a
big hole in it that lets fuel from the float bowl into the power valve vacuum passage and
into the engine.

There are some hand held vacuum pumps and adapters out there to check power valves.
I just use my mouth after making sure all the gas is dried off. If you suck a lot of air
through the diaphragm, or it won't hold a vacuum, then replace it.

Accelerator Pump

You'll probably need the help of a spotter on this, because things happen fast when you
punch the throttle from a dead stop. If your meter goes rich right away when you punch
the throttle, then it leans out gradually, you need a smaller pump nozzle to make the fuel
come out slower. If the meter doesn't go rich right away, but gets richer later, you may
need more fuel earlier. A bigger nozzle is in order. Try some different cams, too, but
be aware that bigger is not always better. If your car still has a lean stumble with the
biggest cams and the biggest nozzles, you may have to go with the 50cc "Reo" pump
diaphragm and the corresponding cam. You must use the big black cam on 50cc
pumps to get the full shot of the 50cc pump! If you put that big old pump under there
but don't move the lever any farther than before, what's the use?

Also, don't put the 50cc cam on small pump diaphragms! You'll break them! Most
manifolds will require a 1/4 inch spacer under the carb to run the big pumps. So if you
add a spacer, don't forget to check your hood clearance BEFORE you slam the hood!

Another thing to think about when you start getting into the big pump cams and nozzles
is to use the hollow nozzle hold down screw. This is due to the fact that the little passage
cut in the side of the internal threads may not be big enough when you're way up in shot
size, over .040, as recommended by Holley.
Accelerator Pump arm adjustment: The accelerator pump arm must not be loose at
idle. The .015 clearance is measured at wide open throttle (engine off!). This is to
prevent damage to the pump arm and diaphragm. You may need to adjust the external
spring one way or the other to get it tight at idle, yet still have the .015 clearance at
WOT.

More tips and fault diagnosis at this page:


http://www.jason.fletcher.net/tech/carbtuning/carbtuning.htm

Interchanging spreadbore float bowls with squarebore

I mentioned to one guy my distaste for spreadbore Holleys, and how most have non-
adjustable floats. The guy said, "Just change them." Well, you can't, at least not with
squarebore float bowls, because the accelerator pump passages don't line up. This is
just plain stupid on Holley's part, but it is the way it is.

This is a photo of a blue squarebore bowl gasket lying on a brown spreadbore gasket.
As you can see the alignment pin holes don't line up, but more importantly, the
accelerator pump holes are off.

Here is that same brown spreadbore gasket on a squarebore bowl. As you can see, the
passage doesn't line up, and the gasket will let the accelerator pump shot go right back
into the fuel bowl.
Well, I sure hope this helps you out! The best advice I can give is to get books and
READ THEM! The guys who publish the carb tuning books are experts who get paid
to do this kind of work. Don't be afraid to try different jets, accelerator pump cams and
nozzles, and power valves in your carb. You have the instrumentation to figure out what
you did wrong if it doesn't work the way you expected it to, so there is no harm done.
Don't drill or file stuff unless you know exactly what you are doing, and you are
prepared to buy new parts if you screw up your old ones.
VIDEO AULA AUTOMOTIVA
Aula 1
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C-YenE3CPuc&feature=related

Aula 2
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j8nHg122Vqs&feature=related

aula 3
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ggo3k2IpG1A&feature=related

aula 4
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K5riouhXBag&feature=related

aula 5
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lqiij6norRU&feature=related

aula 6
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X7VVeeiqU78&feature=related

comercial Chevrolet
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qobqMGknK5w

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zRNmfLGMsqM