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Creating a working EGR system for 1980s Chrysler vehicles

Also see this guide to replacing a modern (2004) EGR valve

For 1980s vehicles which must have a working EGR to pass some state and provincial inspections, there is a fix based on the 1988 EGR setup used by Dodge Ram Heavy Duty trucks with Canadian Emissions. As far as I know, it’s legal and 100% functional. 

Parts are actually Jeep Wagoneer parts, available from – a site devoted to restoring Jeep Wagoneers. The 360 and 318 in the 1980s Jeep are identical to the 360 / 318 in Dodge / Chrysler / Plymouth cars and trucks – so, the parts, while having different numbers, are interchangeable.

You’ll also need a charcoal can from a 1980s Chevy pickup or van with 3 vacuum hose connections:
1) “to air cleaner”,
2) “vapor” [stands for “to fuel tank vapor recovery line], and
3) “purge” [or may say “carb” or “bowl vent”].

dodge cars

Quoting the 1988 W150 dealer shop manual, the first 155 degree TIDC controls the EGR…

...the switch is normally closed up to 150 degrees F, above this temperature, the switch opens subsequently supplying vacuum to open the EGR valve.  The other [2nd 155 degree TIDC valve] behaves as a CVS3P.  In this application, full distributor advance is ensured by supplying manifold vacuum to the distributor below 150 degrees F.

Below 150 degrees F, trapped manifold vacuum to the distributor ensures full spark advance at idle.  During cold acceleration, distributor timing slowly returns to normal.  This feature was added for cold weather driveability.

Above 150 degrees F, the three port switch [2nd 155 degree TIDC] turns control of spark advance over to the [220 degree] TIDC valve.  Below 225 degrees F – carburetor vacuum to the distributor [is supplied],  and above 225 degrees F, manifold vacuum to the distributor for full spark advance [is supplied].  This reduces engine heat rejection and increases engine rpm and thus fan speed.

Now… what parts do you need?

1 – an EGR valve — any will do so long as it fits your motor.  www.teamgrandwagoneer sells one for all 318/360 motors that is kind of on the large side but it works. (You may need a 1” carb spacer if you use it because it doesn’t clear linkage on aftermarket carbs). 

2 – Charcoal can from 1970s and 80s Chevrolets as described above; wrecking yards should have these for under $20. I had to get a new purge canister because I accidently drilled a hole through mine when I went to put a new washer fluid thing in my truck. GP SORENSEN # 779-22019 is available at (Advance Auto Parts) at $55 new with warranty.

3 – Carburetor …either the stock Carter or an Edelbrock 1400 performer series will work — note only the 1400 model, not the 1403 or 1406 —only the 1400 has the bowl vent port. You can use the other carbs; you will simply have to connect the purge port on the charcoal canister to manifold vacuum. I found this out after initially trying to "T" it into the air filter line -- the way these charcoal cans work is as follows...

a) fuel vapors vent out of the tank and into the canister where they're trapped.

b) The "air cleaner" nipple on the canister is the output, the path through which the vapors flow out and into your carburetor's bowl [if you have an aftermarket carb, you simply drill a small hole in the base of your air cleaner, put a nipple on it, and hook it up to there].

c) when vacuum is applied to the purge nipple on the canister, a valve is opened inside the canister that allows the fuel vapor to flow out through the air cleaner nipple on the can. If you don't apply vacuum, then it will not open, and the system is useless. Old carburetor purge ports were nothing more than metered manifold vacuum.

4- Spark delay valve – Mopar part number 53002381 (old number) and 30997 (new number – same item).

5- EGR delay valve – mopar part number J3236285 (old) and 60989 (new number – same item).

6-Coolant Temperature Overrides / Thermostatic Vacuum Switches / TIDCs"

7– bunch of vacuum hose and connectors and junk…

The total cost was about $200 with the hoses and everything, but now I don’t have to worry about passing emissions, and I can have peace of mind knowing that my setup isn’t hampering the performance of my vehicle because it’s hooked up incorrectly.  It’s simple, it’s effective, and it’s correct.  

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