Fuel - '82 EXP Loses Fuel Pressure | Ford Escort Owners Association (FEOA)
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Fuel '82 EXP Loses Fuel Pressure

Discussion in '1st Gen 1981-1990 CVH' started by rob289c, May 18, 2018.

  1. rob289c

    rob289c FEOA Member

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    New member here. My EXP has a fuel problem. It will start and run but after a drive and a quick stop for gas or at a store it will start and run for about 1/4 mile, then stumble, stall out and won't re-start. It will pop off with starting fluid so I know it's a fuel issue and not ignition. If I let it sit for a couple of hours it will start and run just fine. I have driven it 0ver 60 miles running perfectly, stopped for gas, then the problem rears it's head. It has also stumbled while driving. It loses power and I have to nurse the throttle to keep it going.

    The fuel tank is new, the rubber fuel hoses are new, the fuel pump and pushrod are new, the fuel filter is new, the carb was professionally rebuilt by a former PONY Carburators employee. The sending unit/fuel puckup are not new but I cleaned the pick up tube filter with carb cleaner and it looked clean. The rigid fuel lines are not new but were solid. When it left me stranded the first time I had it towed to a garage. Of course it started up the next day when they went to work on it and starteed every day for the week I let them keep it. They couldn't find anything wrong and suggested a new fuel pump which I agreed to even though the one I had put on previously had less than 200 miles on it. Even with fuel pump #2, it still does this.

    I don't know if this is a vapor lock issue, fuel pump issue, or a tank pressure/vent issue. Does anyone have any ideas? I have no history with this car. I bought it 4 years ago and restored it as a father/son project. It has been too unreliable to enjoy. It looks cool and runs great when it runs but dying on the road is no fun. Any help or suggestions will be welcomed. Thank you in advance.

    Rob

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  2. 88ESCORTV6

    88ESCORTV6 The Alpha Of The Omega

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    Fuel cap proplem. Its cheap try one.
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  3. rob289c

    rob289c FEOA Member

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    Thanks. I will take your advice. Is there anything I should look for in the fuel tank vent system up to the charcoal canister in the fenderwell? Do they ever go bad? Get plugged? Could that contribute to my problem? I will order the fuel cap today. One thing I should mention is that a previous owner opened up the fuel filler to accept the larger "regular leaded" gas nozzle many moons ago. Any potential issue with that?
  4. rob289c

    rob289c FEOA Member

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    I just order the new gas cap. We'll see what happens!
  5. 88ESCORTV6

    88ESCORTV6 The Alpha Of The Omega

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    Try your Gas cap and we will see.
    The opening not really. it should not be a problem
  6. Joey_Twowagons

    Joey_Twowagons FEOA Member

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    If you could temporarily splice in a fuel pressure gauge just before the carb, you could monitor it while driving to confirm it is a fuel delivery problem. I have done this on a fuel injected Escort which really helped with diagnosis.
    zzyzzx likes this.
  7. rob289c

    rob289c FEOA Member

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    I will look into getting a fuel pressure gauge. I agree it would be good to see the gauge while it starts to stumble and/or failure to start. The gas cap I ordered hasn't arrived yet. Once it arrives I will take a cruise to see if it does it again.
  8. Joey_Twowagons

    Joey_Twowagons FEOA Member

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    Since I was dealing with fuel injection, I just used a regular 0-60 psi gauge and plumbed it in with copper tubing.

    Low pressure gauges are harder to come by, you need a 0-10 or so for a carburetor.

    Carbs typically require 2-5 psi.
  9. marclar

    marclar Administrator Staff Member

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    classic fuel pump failure symptom. sounds like you need to replace the pump. you can try hooking up a gauge to it, but being an 82, its probably due. cap wont make a difference.
  10. Joey_Twowagons

    Joey_Twowagons FEOA Member

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    He says the pump and filter were recently replaced, although it still could be faulty.
    Another possibility is that the filter "sock" on the fuel pickup in the fuel tank could be clogged.
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  11. JOEG5982

    JOEG5982 FEOA Member

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    If the new pump is working properly, sounds like vapor lock. Something is getting a fuel line/ hose hot is my guess.
  12. 88ESCORTV6

    88ESCORTV6 The Alpha Of The Omega

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    Did you try Gas cap?
  13. rob289c

    rob289c FEOA Member

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    The gas cap I ordered is supposed to be delivered tomorrow (Saturday). I haven't touched the car since I drove it last two weeks ago. Tomorrow I am going to try to button up my Ranger's tie rod/ball joint/shocks/brake job. I may take the EXP for a ride later in the day after the new cap arrives to see what happens. As for the fuel pump, I replaced the original and put about 200 miles on it before replacing with a 2nd new one and the problem didn't go away. Both were Carter pumps from Rock Auto so they could be old and defective but I think it's something else. The fuel lines are in the factory location and I don't see where the vapor lock would occur. It happens sometimes while driving and vapor lock is usually a hard start condition after the engine is hot. The fuel cap and vapor line sound like possible culprits so I am going to start there. I may plumb in a gauge to see what I believe is the obvious. I know it loses fuel pressure...just don't know why. There is a car show I may attend on Sunday so my son can drive my Mustang and I will drive the EXP (he's not god at shifting yet). I'll report back tomorrow or Sunday after test drives.
  14. rob289c

    rob289c FEOA Member

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    The filter/sock at the end of the fuel pick up tube was cleaned when I put the sender in the brand new tank. Highly unlikely it is dirty. It is possible I collapsed the hoses that run from the tank to the rigid under car lines when I installed the tank (maybe they are smashed between the top of the tank and the floor. It's odd that it will run perfectly, the lose pressure after a stop for gas or at the store.
  15. rob289c

    rob289c FEOA Member

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    My new fuel cap.arrived yesterday. I installed it this morning and decided to run a few errands in the EXP. I told my son to watch his phone in case I needed him to come rescue me. First stop, Lowes. About 12 miles. Ran perfectly. Went in, made my purchases and fingers crossed started to leave. Decided to stay in parking lot rather than hit the road immediately. Didn't even make it 100 yads and lost fuel pressure and died. Pushed it into a parking spot and called for my son to come and get me. New fuel cap didn't solve the problem. It will pop off with starting flid but won't stay running . When I come back in a few hours it will probably start and run fine all the way home. Any ideas on my problem?
  16. rob289c

    rob289c FEOA Member

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    I went back to Lowes around 6:00 PM. The car had been siting for about 6 hours. I gave it a quick shot of ether and it started and ran. There were a couple of times on the 11 mile drive that it felt like it missed or lost power but kept running all the way home. It's safe and sound in the garage but I've got to figure this out. I might put a third fuel pump on but from a different source or a different brand. The fuel plumbing is bone stock and the engine doesn't run hot so I'm not leaning toward vapor lock. It might be but the fuel line doesn't get close to the exhaust. I haven't checked the charcoal canister yet. I may disconnect the hose to it to see if that makes a difference.
  17. denisond3

    denisond3 Moderator Staff Member

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    I dont know know about EXPs, but a problem inside the carburetor would seem likely to me. Does this car have a fuel return line? If so, something in the carb is involved in metering what goes into the venturi tubes, versus what gets returned to the fuel tank. Any car that is 36 years old I would expect could be on its 2nd or 3rd carburetor, or fuel pressure regulator (wherever that function might be).
    I had an old Mercedes that would run when it wanted to, and die when it felt like it. After a long story it turned out to be a worn out 'pivot' for the rod that moved the lever on the end of the fuel pump. That car had 350,000 miles on it when I got it - and the failure was related to high mileage.
    I have also had to clean dead spiders out of the air percolation passasges in a Holley carb in my vintage 1972 Winnebago. The insect wasnt visible till I had drilled out the aluminum plugs for the various passages cast/drilled into the body of the carb.

    I have had a 4 cylinder car that would periodically need its carburetor hold down nuts to be resnugged. They would work loose from vibration, causing vacuum leaks.
    Last edited: May 28, 2018
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  18. Joey_Twowagons

    Joey_Twowagons FEOA Member

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    Just to clarify an error in the previous post - spiders are not insects.:cat:
    (Humour).
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  19. rob289c

    rob289c FEOA Member

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    So I did a little research in between all my other chores over the weekend. There is an Idle Circuit fuel shutoff solenoid in the carb. I don't think that has anything to do with my problem but wondering if anyone has had any experience with one going bad? What were the symptoms? Also, there is a vent valve on top of the tank that connects to the vent line that goes to the charcoal canister. I am going to remove it and drive for a while to see if the problem goes away. It could be vapor lock but the car runs great until I shut if off. It starts right up and will run but only until it burns the fuel that was left in the float bowl, then it won't start for several hours. The fuel lines are plumbed exactly the way they were from the factory and the only place they would get hot is where they cross from right to left under the hood. Something is causing the flow of fuel to stop after shutting down and it is getting sucked back to the tank and voiding the lines. I will get this figured out but am still open to suggestions. Denisond3, I am going to rule out carb issues at this point as the car has 45k on it and the carb was professionally gone through by the guy that did my Mustang carb. When the car runs, it runs great. It's just that after shutting it down it doesn't start. Next time I do it I am going to make my "stop" in my own garage. It seems to like to die at Lowes!
  20. 88ESCORTV6

    88ESCORTV6 The Alpha Of The Omega

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    That selenoid needs 12 volt to run at idle but only idle.
    if you press gas it would start if that was bad but would not keep idle.
    if you hold gas pedle car would start if that was defective.
    zzyzzx likes this.

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