How does the HEI distributor and coil work?

The distributor needs only one wire to supply the module with power. The module sends out a voltage to the magnetic pickup. The voltage is interrupted every time the star wheel causes a pulse in the voltage. This pulse is returned to the module, where, in turn, it grounds the coil, causing a spark plug to fire.

How does an HEI ignition module work?

With an electronic module, an HEI can safely operate at much higher current loads. More power applied across the primary circuit of the coil means the coil can apply greater spark energy to the spark plugs. This additional power ensures more complete combustion at both idle and at wide open throttle.

How do you wire a HEI distributor?

Connect the primary wires to the HEI distributor, via a plug that snaps into the distributor cap. There are two wires in the plug: the hot wire and the tachometer wire. If you are updating from an old distributor, splice the old distributor hot wire to the hot wire of the HEI primary plug.

What does a HEI distributor need?

In order to run properly, an HEI requires a full 12 volts at all times. The 20-gauge resistance wire must be replaced by a 12-gauge wire (pink to maintain the factory colour coding), hooked up to the HEI cap’s “BAT” terminal.

Does an HEI distributor use a coil?

Most—but not all—HEI systems have the ignition coil mounted in the distributor cap. A control module and magnetic pickup are mounted in the distributor, in place of a conventional ignition system’s breaker points and condenser.

Does HEI require a coil?

How do I check my HEI distributor?

How To Test an HEI distributor Engine Cranks But Will Not Start

  1. With the ignition on, connect a voltmeter (or test light) to the + post or HEI BAT terminal located on the distributor cap.
  2. Check for continuity or voltage drop in the ignition switch and in the circuit from the switch to HEI BAT terminal.

Are HEI distributors good?

An HEI distributor is a great piece of equipment for an over-the-road car because it is completely self-contained. It requires minimal wiring and is easy to install. But without an external coil, a stock HEI cannot provide a strong spark at rpm levels commonly seen on the racetrack.

How many volts does a stock HEI put?

An HEI should have a 10 guage wire run to it. If it’s hooked to stock wiring it may not be getting a full 12 volts. Many cars had ballast resistors or resistor wire running to the stock coil. A GM HEI should run on as low as 9 volts but 12-14.5 is required for good performance.

Does an HEI distributor need a coil?