Question about 1998 Ford Explorer

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Sometimes my 1998 explorer will fail to start, it cranks but the fuel pump doesnt activate.....then it will just start! I have swapped the relay. any suggestions?

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Sounds like it's time for a new fuel pump. Double check all the wiring to the relay to be sure none of the wires are broken or corroded. Chances are if they are ok, you have a bad spot in the fuel pump itself.

Posted on Nov 17, 2009

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It could be a faulty fuel pump relay. It should be in the power distribution block under the hood. Hold your finger lightly on it to feel for the click. Every time you turn the key from off to on, the relay should click-which then sends power on to the pump. Try replacing the relay or swap in a known good one, before condemning the pump.
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It sounds like the pump is failing. That or sometimes not getting electricity. To check which it is, you could use a voltmeter or test light at the gas tank's electrical plug in. You need to check for power on the fuel pump wire when the engine is being cranked for starting. Do this when turning the key to on does not cause the pump to turn on for 2 seconds as it should. The fuel pump has power for those 2 seconds when key is turned to on, and again has power when the engine is cranked. You might miss the two second signal, so check for power when car won't start-when pump won't turn on-and with the engine cranking. If you have a signal then and still no pump coming on, then you must have a failing pump.
But if you have NO power to fuel pump wire with engine cranking, then it is a problem elsewhere-probably the pump relay (try a new relay if you haven't already). That relay is signaled by the engine computer when key is turned to on or when engine cranks . so you could do some testing at the relay if needed.

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The easiest way to tell if your fuel pump is running is have someone inside the vehicle turn the key to the ON position... put your ear against the gas filler.. if you don't hear it buzzing your fuel pump is either bad or not getting power. If your fuel pump is bad, you will have to drop the fuel tank. be careful not to just let it drop down after you loosen the straps, this could lead to dammaged fuel lines.
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