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1997 Ford Escort Wagon Automatic
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Sorry but this is going to be a long post to include as much detail as possible, 97 wagon 2.0 auto with 122k. So about 2 months ago while cruising on the highway I attempted to speed up and it felt like the engine had no power, the rpms went up some but not enough and just felt like the entire engine was bogged down. I let off the pedal and tried again but same thing it just felt very bogged down. I decided to just keep pushing the pedal down and when it got enough the trans downshifted and the engine revved as it should to accelerate. The car ran fine after that for a few weeks until my gf borrowed it and it happened again both to and from work. No codes or lights come on when this happens or afterwards. Again after that it ran fine for a few more weeks until today. I was at a red light and when I tried to go the car started to go and then suddenly it felt like the engine lost power and was bogged down, I get through the intersection, pull over, put in neutral to see if it revvs which it does. I was close to my destination start driving and what felt like a slight miss appeared at 55. Once I arrived I opened the hood and see its idling a bit rough seems to stumble and come back. On the way home it had the random miss and power issue intermittently until about the halfway point and it ran fine from there. This is the only issue I have with the car, it starts right up and runs through the gears no problem. Any thoughts as to where to start looking because with how intermittent it is has me confused.I'll be happy to provide any more detail if I missed anything. Thanks for any help.
 

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well your symptom fits a bunch of possible issues... fuel pump and filter could be an issue, coil pack also. timing belt slipping teeth, things like that. start with the basics, tune up and filters.. these engines are known for valve seat problems, so that is also something that is on the list of a possibility
 

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1997 Ford Escort Wagon Automatic
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
well your symptom fits a bunch of possible issues... fuel pump and filter could be an issue, coil pack also. timing belt slipping teeth, things like that. start with the basics, tune up and filters.. these engines are known for valve seat problems, so that is also something that is on the list of a possibility
I replaced fuel pump assy about 2 months ago. I've also done plugs, wires, fuel filter, trans fluid/filter about a year ago. I was thinking about it being timing or valve seat related but I figured if either were the culprit the issue would be more consistent. I didn't think of the coil though and it's a motorcraft so possibly the original one. Thanks for the suggestions.
 

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1997 Ford Escort Wagon Automatic
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
What brand of plug wires?
I don't remember but I assume I would of used Autolite plugs and mid grade wires. I drove it yesterday and this morning with the other fuel pump in and sonar it's been better. I'll have to keep driving it the next few weeks and see if the issues pops up again.
 

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I agree on the fuel pump. Modern aftermarket pumps are junk, there is about a 33% chance one will work out of the box for all makes/modles. what brand did you get?
 

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1998 ZX2
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I agree on the fuel pump. Modern aftermarket pumps are junk, there is about a 33% chance one will work out of the box for all makes/modles. what brand did you get?
Huh? What kind of POS brand are you buying? Rarely do we have aftermarket pumps not work out of the box at my shop.
 

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First things first; pull codes if you haven't already. Some codes can be stored or pending and not throw a check engine light. If you see a P0301-0304 code range, then you have misfires on one or more cylinders. Get a fuel pressure gauge and check fuel pressure at the rail; if your code scanner is capable, pull the fuel pressure PID and see what the PCM is reading for fuel pressure. Change your fuel filter if you haven't; they aren't the easiest to get to, but they must be done.
 

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sounds to me like the mass airflow sensor is dirty. Same thing happened to mine. Got a can of mass airflow sensor cleaner took the air filter housing off, removed the mass air flow sensor (without touching the filament) sprayed a few good squirts of mass airflow cleaner through it, let it dry, sprayed a few more, let it dry, reassembled the whole thing and it cleared it right up and never happened again. Ran to 268,000 miles that car did.
 

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I agree on the fuel pump. Modern aftermarket pumps are junk, there is about a 33% chance one will work out of the box for all makes/modles. what brand did you get?
Or start with the cheaper and move to the more expensive lol. I always start with the free stuff like cleaning the mass airflow sensor or checking for loose wiring or cracked insulation or even water in my taillights flooding my sockets.
 

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I may have a throttle cable in my storage that will fit that. In fact I think I have two. I can check and take pics and post them once I see I do have them and make sure they are operable.
 

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1997 Ford Escort Wagon Automatic
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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Thanks for the suggestions. I've already done the basic maintenance like plugs, wires, and fuel filter about a year before this problem developed. I'll definitely try cleaning the MAF. Then problem did come back a few days after putting in a known good fuel pump. I have noticed that when the car does act up its when it's raining or has rained for a while and everything is wet/damp. Is there some electrical connection that is more susceptible to moisture intrusion that might be causing this?
 
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