2000 Ford Contour Lost power *first post, be gentile :)

Love the radio show, I figured this would be a good place to get some opinions about this.

I was taking this car on a short trip, 200 miles, after about a 3 quarters of the way there (this was on a 2-lane hway by the way), I’d go to pass someone, and the automatic transmission would downshift, then it would run real rough, like it was getting fuel every other half second. Let off, and all was fine.

However, as neared the destination, it would do that no matter what the rpm was, and it eventually died. It would not immediately restart, but after a while (10 minutes maybe), after a cooled down some, it would start just fine, and I made it.

I was working as summer help at an autoshop, and the mechanics there said it sounded like the fuel pump. So i borrowed their fuel-rail pressure tester and hooked it up, and the pressure showed normal ~35psi.

My dad thinks it might be electronic, a piece of computer hardware or sensor getting too hot and malfunctioning.


I did have a couple of possible sources of the problem, but I guess that I should not mention them because I am non-gentile.

Most people on this board are willing to accept help from anyone. Why do you want to exclude help from anyone who is not a gentile?


I’m sorry, but the Devil made me say that. We non-gentiles are like that.

VDC Driver, I Graciously Let You Field This One. You Read My Mind. I Knew You’d Answer.


"After you my dear Alphonse.

No, I insist, after you…"

…or something to that effect.

Thanks for the laugh out loud this Sunday morning VDCdriver.

I’m not sure if I’m supposed to “gentle” or “gentile” but anyway…

the first three things I’d suspect would be

  • fuel pump - don’t mistake the static pressure for pressure under load. If you can, hook up that pressure gauge and drive around with it w/ the dial taped up on the windshield. Of ask the mechanics where you work if they have good ways to “load test” the pump. Relatedly, replace your fuel filter if it is due.
  • ignition component breakdown - sort of close to what your dad said but no need to get “drastic” (e.g. computer) yet. How old are the plugs & wires? Check the ignition coil(s). This is the kind of thing that can breakdown only when especially hot.
  • exhaust system clog. Ask at the shop to see if anyone is really good with a vacuum gauge and have them give you a lesson.