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'00 B3000 Irregular Starting - Fuel Pump?

Discussion in 'Ford Ranger - Mazda B-Series Forum' started by itinerant, July 6, 2011.

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  1. itinerant

    itinerant New Member

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    City, State:
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    Hi all,

    This is my first post on the forum, but I've been using the extremely useful tech tips to do a bunch of regular maintenance projects on my B3000. But here's an issue I really need help with:

    Sometimes the truck starts and runs without any problem. Other times, especially when it has sat for more than a few hours, it will turn over (very strong - shakes the whole truck), but won't start. So far, it has always started eventually, I just have to keep trying (turn off ignition, wait 10 seconds, try again).

    The battery is only a couple years old and was just tested yesterday, so it can't be that. I've also just (yesterday) replaced the fuel filter and cleaned the injectors (read somewhere that a really bad fuel filter can cause too much pressure to build up and starve the engine), but the problem is still happening. I can't be sure, but I could swear that when the truck starts, I can hear the fuel pump run for a couple seconds before it kicks over (kind of a whirring noise). On the times it doesn't, I don't hear any whirring. It's faint, though, so maybe I'm making it up?

    Here are some more possibly relevant details: when the problem happens, the THEFT light flashes like crazy (I bought the truck used in 2005, and it's never had an alarm - must have been an option at the dealer?). Also, the ignition switch has always been very 'loose', to the point where it's actually possible to pull the key out while the ignition is still on.

    I add these details because I wonder if, rather than a bad fuel pump, there's something wrong with the electrical system. As in, sometimes the fuel pump gets power, sometimes not. Maybe something's funky with the inertia switch? A bad fuse somewhere? I don't know much about auto electrics, but it seems possible, otherwise, why would it work fine sometimes and not others?

    Any help would be greatly appreciated. I don't mind taking the truck to a shop, I'm just worried that they'll tell me it's a bad fuel pump, charge me an arm and a leg to replace it, and then it'll keep happening and turn out that it was actually a $15 fuse or something.

    Thanks in advance!
     
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  3. Rick

    Rick Pumpkin Pilot Staff Member Admin Elite Explorer

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    You should be able to hear the fuel pump every time you go from off to the run position. If it's only coming on intermittently your fuel pump may be going bad. Sounds like it's starving for fuel when it's hard to start.
     
  4. McCormack

    McCormack Active Member

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    You didn't mention if you do this or not, but I find with my truck I have to turn the key to the on position and let it sit for a few seconds and let the fuel pump charge the system, and when I hear the fuel pump cycle off I engage the starter and my truck then starts easily.
     
  5. itinerant

    itinerant New Member

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    Agreed

    Yes, I think you're right. Since starting this thread, I replaced the fuel filter, cleaned the injectors and throttle body, and replaced the plugs and wires. Sometimes it still has the hard starting problem, but it seems less frequent and it doesn't last nearly as long. Like you say, I can usually turn the key to the on position and let the pump run for a few seconds before actually trying to start the truck.

    Thanks for the help!
     

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