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Bad Fuel Pump: Delphi or Spectra?

lobo411

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So I got in the truck this morning to go to the gym and no-start, no fuel pump whine when I turned the key. Tried 4-5 times and nothing. I gave the fuel tank a few whacks with a rubber mallet and it started right up, so I figured...fuel pump.

1996 4.0 OHV XLT 4 door US-manufactured 171,000 mi, so it's due.

Anyway, I dropped the tank, which took about 6 hours (mainly because I struggled with the one so-called quick-disconnect that wouldn't let go for 3 hrs. Finally got it out and went parts-shopping, and blah...almost impossible to get a name brand pump anymore.

Rockauto is great on parts, but frankly they're too damn slow sometimes to be reliable.

I ended up getting a Delphi CFG0198 at Autozone only to discover that it appears to be the wrong one, plus there were absolutely no instructions in the box.

So after a lot of torturous online/phone shopping, I narrowed it down to:

Delphi FG0229 from Amazon, arrives sometime Saturday, $130 after tax. Pump only.

Spectra Premium Fuel Pump and Sender Assembly SPH6042H, arrives Friday, $118 after tax, entire assembly--just bolt in.

Any recommendations? My considerations are mainly:

1. I don't want to get stuck somewhere,
2. I'd rather not do wiring. Not confident with electronics, but maybe I'll get over it.
3. I don't want to spend a ton of money on a truck that just barely passed smog last week (46 ppm on HC--47 ppm is fail)
4. I don't drive this truck a ton. I'll put on 30000 miles in 10 years.
5. I don't want to do this job ever again. When this pump fails, this truck is getting crushed into a tie tack.


Thanks!
 
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96eb96

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Motorcraft is the way to go but I've used delphi and they seem to have a good product. It said made in Mexico, probably where pumps for most new american vehicles are made. I think the main thing though is good wiring, a new relay for max voltage, and a clean tank.

Spectra is not clear where their product is made, they could buy from China (who knows??). It is probably a good choice too, they seem to have quality control.

If you want the best look for a walbro pump, you may have to splice in some wires but I believe they are the oem. It has a W engraved on the pump.
 
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lobo411

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Just getting washed up...the Delphi pump I got (which is the wrong one) from Autozone is Chinese. :(
 
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koda2000

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I've installed 6 Bosch fuel pumps (in 6 different Explorers/Mountaineers) in past 18 months. Can't beat'em at around $50-$60 on eBay. All work great. They come with everything needed (except the strainer and new fuel filter). You can spend a lot more. It's your money.

Whatever you do, don't buy an Airtex fuel pump.
 
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lobo411

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Finally cleaned up...Thanks for the replies!
[MENTION=287397]Koda[/MENTION], unfortunately it looks like nobody has the Bosch pump for my 96 4.0 (Bosch part # 67085). No dice on eBay, and Summit Racing claims to have it but then you click on it and they say it should ship around mid-June! Thanks for the tip about Airtex though...the Napa gal was trying to push that one hard!

I have to say I'm a bit disturbed by the real scarcity of what ought to be a widely available part. Not to mention the ridiculously complex process of figuring out which part is the right one:

Is your vehicle: 2 doors or 4 doors?
Is it: An XLT?
Is it: Made in Mexico?

Good lord...if it wasn't for the fact that this Explorer has such a clean body/interior and still runs really well, I'd have called Pick-A-Part to have it scrapped this morning!
 
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koda2000

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Both 2 doors, 4 doors and a Sport Trac, XLT, Eddie Bauer, Sport, Mountaineer (it doesn't matter for the fuel pump).

When I needed recently a fuel pump for my '97 Sport I called Bosch Technical Support's 800 number to get The right part number (just to be sure) and then bought it on eBay for like $52. Sometimes the compatibility charts on eBay are incorrect.

The pumps were all made in Germany.

You were considering scraping your truck because it needed a fuel pump? If I did that my whole family would now be taking the bus (and there is no bus).
 
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lobo411

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The pumps were all made in Germany.

You were considering scraping your truck because it needed a fuel pump? If I did that my whole family would now be taking the bus (and there is no bus).

Heh! As much as I would love to have a German made pump, there's still something wrong with the compatibility (at least, of the Bosch pump I looked at on eBay). That one, and most of the ones I've seen (on eBay and elsewhere), have a totally different gasket system using a bunch of 5-6" diameter O-rings. Mine has a 5-6" diameter flat cog-like gasket. Also, my pump attaches to the pump frame using 3 screws, and the one I got at Autozone, the Bosch, and others appear to use only two. So I'm nervous about waiting 5 days and ending up with the wrong part. This looks like my pump:

http://www.rockauto.com/info/26/P74159_P04_ANG.jpg

Notice the blue ring and the small plastic housing projection next to the blue thing. Neither of those two things are on the pump I got from Autozone. The plastic projection is where the 3rd screw mounts.

Part of what's pissing me off atm is this whole business of "it might fit...or it might not...or maybe if you MacGuyver it."

And ya, I'm just getting sick of things breaking. I'm fine with maintenance and moderate repairs, but when a car starts stranding me, I regard the social contract as null and void!

It needs a whole new front suspension (not noisy yet, but the rubber is gone so it's only a matter of time), the parking brake is a goner (friction material on the shoe is heavily fractured), it leaks oil externally and probably internally, it barely passed smog last week, there's a squeaking sound on first start in the morning I can't find, and the biggest of all:

The trans works well...for now!

All of which just says it's a 20 year old car performing well despite being old and decrepit! :)

But if there's one thing we all know, it's that 5 minutes after I drop $500 or $1000 and a week or two fixing it up, the trans will decide to blow up.
 
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lobo411

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OK, for now, I've made a decision: I'm going with Spectra. Why?

1. Drop in...I can be done with this sh...stuff in 2 hrs tops once I get the part. No wiring involved.
2. Spectra really seems to have its act together. I wasted a good 2-3 hours today vainly searching the manufacturers' websites for parts catalogs. Delphi's site is an absolute mess. AC Delco's parts catalog is non-existent. Spectra has a well-designed parts catalog with great pictures and very specific descriptions that (theoretically) should mean that you get the right part.
3. Someone's gotta try them out... :)

Crazy idea, huh? Try to make people feel comfortable buying your stuff, and they just might do it!
 
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1996BLKBauer

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I've had a Delphi pump in my Explorer for over 3 years now, not a single issue. According to the all of the parts stores at the time they don't make a full sending unit, which I wanted. But other then being slightly inconvenienced by wiring it in, It was a quality pump, with no issues.
 
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koda2000

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I don't think you will need any of the gaskets/o-rings that come with the pump. None of my trucks (including the '97) use these o-rings to seal the assembly. The FP assembly has it's own reusable rubber gasket. The pumps come with a lot of stuff you won't need because they fit multiple vehicles. You will need the new submersible hose, the FI clamps, the wiring pigtail. The Bosch pump comes with all these parts. If you're not having fuel gauge problems you don't need the whole assembly. You'll also need a new strainer and a new fuel filter for your warranty.

Like I said, don't trust the eBay compatibility charts. I often find they are incorrect, or incomplete. When in doubt contact the manufacturer.
 
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96eb96

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Walbro! Lots of Motorcraft pumps have a W on the pump. The only thing is you have be sure its genuine, they are usually around $100 just for the pump.

I think you will be fine with spectra. I would avoid those ABC brands off the China tanker. Also, if you want your pump to last never go below about 1/4 tank. Especially if you are not sure of its quality.

Believe it or not Airtex is a major OEM supplier as well, despite their not so stellar reputation. Lots of their problems actually come from DIY installations with poor voltage and dirty tanks, this is what a shop told me. Your delphi (or even spectra) pump may be made by them. I've seem Walbro on a Delphi hanger for another car. Auto parts today are contracted out everywhere and reboxed.

http://www.airtexproducts.com/news-airtex-more-than-just-replacement-fuel-pumps.aspx
 
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lobo411

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[MENTION=287397]Koda[/MENTION]
Well, the Napa in town has a Bosch, but it says it's incompatible. I ordered it for pickup because I figured I'd look at it and decide if it looks workable, but from the pictures, it looks way different.

Here's the one I ordered...$90 for pickup today:
http://www.amazon.com/Bosch-69128-Original-Equipment-Replacement/dp/B000BZL8UU

This picture looks exactly like mine, but nobody has it and nobody except Kragen says it's right. And Rockauto has a totally different picture. This picture looks exactly the same though:
http://www.amazon.com/Delphi-FG0243-Fuel-Pump-Module/dp/B000CGJY54

I really prefer the Bosch, but I don't have much confidence in chopping things up/soldering things in/screw-clamping hoses all around.


[MENTION=30733]96eb96[/MENTION]
Thanks for the advice! That's what I was thinking too...Delphi is supposed to be a good brand and it's one I've heard of, and the pump I got at Autozone was Made in China. The fuel filter I bought and installed yesterday was Fram Made in China. The Delphi Amazon is shipping me to arrive tomorrow could very well be Made in China. Who the heck knows anymore?

I think the plan for today is to pick up a Bosch pump at Napa, pick up the Spectra pump at Pep Boys, and decide which looks best. If I like neither, I might wait for the Delphi pump to come in tomorrow, but I'm leery of doing that. Delphi's catalog is just a complete mess and I have no idea which part (if any) is the right one. Plus...Delphi's made in China too, so why wait for nothing?
 
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koda2000

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Quote: This picture looks exactly like mine, but nobody has it and nobody except Kragen says it's right. And Rockauto has a totally different picture. This picture looks exactly the same though:
http://www.amazon.com/Delphi-FG0243-.../dp/B000CGJY54

I've never seen one that looks like your's (but I don't own a '96). If that's what your's looks like, that's what you should buy.
 
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lobo411

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I've never seen one that looks like your's (but I don't own a '96). If that's what your's looks like, that's what you should buy.

Ya, maybe they did some kinda oddball stuff that only applies to 96, because it sure seems like the pumps that are listed as compatible really aren't.

Anyway, I got impatient so I went ahead and installed the Spectra pump assembly. Got the pump in with no issues, changed the fuel filter, refilled with a half-tank (which is where I started when it died), pre-loaded 10 times or so, and she started right up on the first try.

Hopefully it stays that way. It's too early to tell, of course, but I'd say:

Spectra pumps in general seem to have excellent reviews on Amazon (4-5 stars).

The pump assembly I got (SP6042H) was a perfect match for my application. It really was just drop in and bolt.

Quality seems to be pretty good, although time is the real test.

Sender unit/float is accurate. Reads exactly what it should, based on how much gas I put back in.

Pump box says Made in China, designed/tested in Canada

Pump box and retail advertising says lifetime warranty, but when you go to the website it says the warranty is only good if you have proof that it was professionally installed. Seems like BS to me since this part is being sold to DIYers via outlets like Autozone, Pep Boys, Amazon, Wal-mart, etc... I figured if it dies in 30-90 days, I can still return it under the implied warranty in California law: even if a retailer says no returns, the customer has the right to refund if the product is defective or otherwise unusable for its intended purpose.


As to what killed the old pump, I dunno:

1. It has 172k on it and ran reliably all that time, so maybe it was due.

2. I barely passed smog with 46 ppm HC (46 ppm is the max limit) @ 15 MPH, and I read somewhere that a weak fuel pump can cause the computer to compensate by running rich.

3. I ran 4-6 oz of Lucas Upper Cylinder Lube through it at every fillup (ie a full tank) for a year because I had a gallon of the stuff and wanted to get rid of it. Kinda have to wonder if all that mineral oil could have killed it. However, the sock was pretty clean.

4. My driver's side spark plugs were not entirely but pretty well crudded over with additive deposits. I replaced the lot of them last week.
 
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koda2000

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Congrats. I'm sure you'll be good now. What killed your old pump was the number of miles on it. All of mine died between 175k-200k, except for the '97 Sport, which had over 260k on it's original (date stamped) fuel pump and was actually still working. I checked inside all my tanks when I dropped them and found absolutely nothing inside (dirt/crud-wise).
 
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lobo411

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Thanks! I drove it around town for errands today and it ran better than it has in years (and it ran smooth before, so that's saying something!). I didn't inspect the tank because my jack couldn't get the X high enough for the tank to clear the body. It's probably clean, though. It's California, plus I didn't have any mysterious no-start issues that would indicate anything other than mechanical wear.

Anyway, the Delphi pump arrived just now, so I'm sending it back to Amazon. Something weird is definitely going on with these Delphi pumps. On the one hand, it's made in USA. On the other hand, it looks incompatible for the same reason as the Delphi pump I got at Autozone: there's a raised screw-hole to receive the 3rd mounting screw on mine, and the one I received doesn't have it.

One thing I noticed: the parts in the pictures (which look right) are part of the "FG" part number series. IE, the pictures of FG0229 (what I ordered on the website) look exactly right. But the box I received has two numbers on it: FG0229, and CFG0229 with a box drawn around it.

I'm guessing that CFG is the new series of these pumps. Maybe it actually is compatible with my application, and you're supposed to discard the 3rd mounting screw. Doesn't really matter since the Spectra is in and it's staying in. However, the Spectra does have the raised platform for the 3rd mounting screw, so that's odd.
[MENTION=287397]Koda[/MENTION]
Did the pumps you installed use 2 or 3 screws to secure the pump to the frame?
 
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SoNic67

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For what is worth, my OE pump died at only 120K miles. Replaced it with Bosch pump (part 69128) plus a new tank filter (sock) - this is for 5.0L V8, 2000.
 
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koda2000

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Thanks! I drove it around town for errands today and it ran better than it has in years (and it ran smooth before, so that's saying something!). I didn't inspect the tank because my jack couldn't get the X high enough for the tank to clear the body. It's probably clean, though. It's California, plus I didn't have any mysterious no-start issues that would indicate anything other than mechanical wear.

Anyway, the Delphi pump arrived just now, so I'm sending it back to Amazon. Something weird is definitely going on with these Delphi pumps. On the one hand, it's made in USA. On the other hand, it looks incompatible for the same reason as the Delphi pump I got at Autozone: there's a raised screw-hole to receive the 3rd mounting screw on mine, and the one I received doesn't have it.

One thing I noticed: the parts in the pictures (which look right) are part of the "FG" part number series. IE, the pictures of FG0229 (what I ordered on the website) look exactly right. But the box I received has two numbers on it: FG0229, and CFG0229 with a box drawn around it.

I'm guessing that CFG is the new series of these pumps. Maybe it actually is compatible with my application, and you're supposed to discard the 3rd mounting screw. Doesn't really matter since the Spectra is in and it's staying in. However, the Spectra does have the raised platform for the 3rd mounting screw, so that's odd.
[MENTION=287397]Koda[/MENTION]
Did the pumps you installed use 2 or 3 screws to secure the pump to the frame?

From '97 on, the pumps don't screw on at all. They sit in a rubber insulator on the bottom and attach to a metal fuel line (or the fuel pressure regulator on later models) using a piece of submersible rubber fuel line on the top. There is a metal strap around the rubber insulator which hooks onto the metal assembly and has a single sheet metal screw on the other end, but no screws on the pump. They look nothing like your fuel pump.
 
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lobo411

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Thanks for the tips again! OK, just to satisfy my curiosity, I skimmed through the parts catalog at Rockauto. Looks like Ford only used this design in 1995 and 1996, so maybe that's why it was so damn hard to get the right part.

Well, let's hope the Spectra holds up. Running fabulous at the moment, but I figure it's way more likely to die at 6-12 mo than right off the bat.

I'll update this thread when it seems warranted. First, to see how well these Spectra pumps hold up. Second, to see if I do any better at smog 2 years from now assuming it makes it that long. Third, to see if I still have the minor pinging issue on hills/mountains that started a few years back. We'll see!
 
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lobo411

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Update--So far, so good on the new fuel pump. No fuel pump problems at all, and although it may be the placebo effect, the engine seems a bit more peppy. It didn't fix the knock problem I've had for a couple of years now (engine knocking on steep grades of 7-10%), though.

I do have a pending p0455, but I think I may have failed to click the gas cap when I refueled today. I'm a bit worried that I cracked or kinked the evap fuel tank line, but I think that if I had done that, a code would have posted well before now. Driven it ~300 miles including daily around town driving and a few 50-60 mi r/t. It would definitely suck to have to drop the tank again to replace that line, though, so hopefully the code goes away!
 
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