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morning start problems - 1995


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September 25, 2009
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Year, Model & Trim Level
1995 Ford Explorer 2 door
My wife has a 2 door 1995 Ford Explorer. It seems every morning she has a hard time starting her car. We figured out that if we turn the key one notch, before the ignition turns the engine over, you can hear the fuel pump going. After a while the fuel pump stops. When it stops the truck will start up. It's beginning to take longer and longer. This morning she left it for over 5 minutes before she heard the pump stop. But when it did stop, she could fully turn the key and have the truck startup just fine.
If we don't wait for the fuel pump to stop the engine just turns over and over and over, but not startup. Cold or warm weather doesn't seem to make a difference. Its cooling down here in Ohio now but during the warm summer months we had the same problem. It also only seems to occur in the mornings, or after a long time sitting. For example, during the work day she can start up the truck just fine right off the bat. Oh, and, the fuel pump was replaced by a Ford garage a couple of years ago. They said the computer came up with a problem indicating the fuel pump. The Explorer had the same problem before and after the fuel pump change but is slowly getting worse. Any help would be appreciated. My wife is worrying that she won't get to work.

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The fuel pump should only run for a second, it doesn't stay on when you turn the key to "on"... or it shouldn't if it is. You might have a wiring problem, or a bad fuel pump relay.

Thanks for the ideas. Would you know where the fuel pump relay is located? Is it expensive?

Thanks for the ideas. Would you know where the fuel pump relay is located? Is it expensive?

Relay is only around $8.00

Located in the Power distribution box under the hood on the drivers side in front of the brake power booster. Check your owners manual for exact location.

Could be a dirty filter or a bad fuel pressure regulator too. When was the last time the fuel filter was changed out?

Can someone point me to a site that I can buy one of these fuel pump relays online?

Also, I'm kind of curious, how exactly does the relay work? Does it stop the ignition from working until it's allowed the fuel pump to pump for a second? And since mine is faulty, there's no way for the car to start until it's turned off the fuel pump?

I actually went out and got a fuel pump relay...$10 at autozone. Now I'm trying to track down an owners manual. Are there any online? My wife bought her Explorer used and there wasn't one that came with it? Does anyone know which relay I need to swap out? They're numbered on the power distribution lid diagram, but not labelled with which one is which.

Here's a picture....I numbered the relays 1, 2, 3. Anyone know which one it is? I've checked a few diagrams out on the web and the link above but it doesn't seem to match anyone of them.

Darn, do you post pictures. I can't provide a link to a url. Can I attach one directly?

ok, thanks for the help. i think i was looking at the wrong diagram originally. it's swapped out now. i'll see how it works in the morning.

thanks for the help everyone! car starts great now. wife is happy.

thanks for the help everyone! car starts great now. wife is happy.

Hey Willie9999,

My issue is similar. I have to turn the key over (not start) multiple times until I can hear the fuel pump. Once I hear the fuel pump, I can start the truck. If I try and start the truck without hearing the fuel pump, it will just turn over and not start. I wonder if I need a relay switch as well?