GM Grand Am/Achieva/Calais/Skylark/Somerset 1985-98

HEI Distributor

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REMOVAL & INSTALLATION



2.0L Engine

See Figure 1

  1. Disconnect the negative battery cable.
  2.  
  3. Label and disconnect the coil and spark plug wires from the distributor cap.
  4.  
  5. Disconnect the coil and EST connectors.
  6.  
  7. Remove the distributor to cam carrier nuts.
  8.  
  9. Mark the tang drive and camshaft for correct positioning during installation, then remove the distributor from the engine.
  10.  



Click image to see an enlarged view

Fig. Fig. 1: View of the HEI distributor mounting-2.0L engine shown

To install:
  1. Position the distributor, aligning the tang drive to the camshaft markings made during removal.
  2.  
  3. Install the distributor-to-cam carrier nuts and tighten them to 13 ft. lbs. (18 Nm).
  4.  
  5. Engage the coil and EST connectors.
  6.  
  7. Attach the coil and spark plug wires to the cap.
  8.  
  9. Connect the negative battery cable.
  10.  
  11. Check and adjust ignition timing, as required.
  12.  

2.5L Engine

See Figure 2

  1. Disconnect the negative battery cable.
  2.  
  3. Remove the air cleaner assembly.
  4.  
  5. If necessary, tag and disconnect the spark plug wires.
  6.  
  7. Detach the ignition switch battery feed wire and the tachometer lead (if equipped) from the distributor cap. Release the coil connectors from the cap, but do not use a screwdriver or tool to release the locking tabs.
  8.  
  9. Turn the retaining screws counterclockwise, then remove the distributor cap and place it out of the way.
  10.  
  11. Detach the 4-terminal ECM wiring harness from the distributor.
  12.  
  13. If necessary, remove the secondary wires from the cap, release the wiring harness latches, then remove the wiring harness retainer. The spark plug wire numbers are indicated on the retainer.
  14.  
  15. Mark the relationship of the rotor to the distributor housing and the housing relationship to the engine.
  16.  
  17. Remove the distributor clamp screw/bolt and the hold-down clamp.
  18.  
  19. Note the position of the rotor by scribing a mark on the distributor housing. Carefully pull the distributor up until the rotor just stops turning counterclockwise, then again mark the rotor position for installation purposes. The drive gear on the shaft is helical and the shaft will rotate slightly as the distributor is removed.
  20.  
  21. Remove the distributor from the engine. Do NOT crank the engine while the distributor is removed.
  22.  

To be sure of correct timing of the distributor, it must be installed with the rotor correctly positioned as noted during removal.



Click image to see an enlarged view

Fig. Fig. 2: Exploded view of the HEI distributor-1985-86 2.5L engine

To install:
  1. If the timing has not been disturbed (engine not rotated):
    1. Rotate the shaft until the rotor aligns with the second mark made during removal. As the distributor is installed, the rotor should move to the first mark made during removal. This ensures proper timing. If the marks do not align properly, remove the distributor and try again.
    2.  

  2.  
  3. If the engine was accidentally cranked after the distributor was removed, the following procedure can be used to install the distributor. The engine must be set on TDC of the compression stroke to obtain proper spark timing:
    1. Remove the No. 1 spark plug.
    2.  
    3. Place a finger over the spark plug hole and have a helper crank the engine slowly until compression is felt.
    4.  
    5. Align the timing mark on the pulley to the 0 on the engine timing indicator. This will indicate that the engine is near TDC of the compression stroke.
    6.  
    7. Align the rotor with the marks made earlier and install the distributor as outlined in Step 12 of the undisturbed engine procedure. If no rotor alignment marks were made during removal, turn the rotor to point between the No. 1 and No. 4 spark plug towers on the distributor cap.
    8.  

  4.  
  5. Install the distributor hold-down clamp and retaining bolt/screw.
  6.  
  7. If removed, install the wiring harness retainer and secondary wires.
  8.  
  9. Attach the 4-terminal ECM wiring harness to the distributor.
  10.  
  11. Install the distributor cap.
  12.  
  13. Fasten the coil connectors to the cap, then attach the tachometer lead (if equipped) and the ignition switch battery feed wire. Make certain the connectors are fully seated and latched.
  14.  
  15. Install the air cleaner assembly.
  16.  
  17. If necessary, connect the spark plug wires as tagged during removal.
  18.  
  19. Connect the negative battery cable, then start the engine, check the timing and adjust if necessary.
  20.  

 
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