2001 Chevy S10 2.2Fuel Pump? Ignition? What? Help!


With gas prices what they are I typically would let my gas run down to fumes prior to this problem. I would buy enough gas to get me through Friday evening. About a month or so ago I went out on a Sat morning and it would not start. I poured some gas in it from a can in my garage and it started and I drove to the gas station and put gas in it. Then it got to 1/4 tank and it would not start!? I put more gas in it and it once again started. Since (1.5 months ago) I have been afraid to let it go below 1/4. If it starts to get close to a 1/4 it gets hard to start. I told my problem to a mechanic and he said that is not the symptoms of a fuel pump (FP) going out. He said the FP just flat go out and the fuel level in the tank has no bearing. He did agree that GMC FP are known to go out early and the FP on the later Colorado are even worse. He also said the GMC FP assemblys are known to also give false readings for fuel levels on the dash and that it may be out of gas at the 1/4 mark. He also said there is a filter sock over the end of the FP and he thinks that mine came off or came apart then when I let the fuel get low it is being pulled into the FP pick up. Which kind of made sense to me since a FP can’t half work it either works or it does not right? He also said that at hwy speeds I would notice low fuel pressure not at start up. Here is what I have learned so far. A) GMC fuel pumps are known to go out early B) they are very pricey C) the symptoms are very missleading. Once started my truck has been running down the road fine. However, now w/i the past 2 weeks of this 6 week troubleshoot I now at idle I have noticed a one hit miss. A few times it has done it a few times in a row but not close enough in a row to call it a stutter. It would be like miss…wait…miss…wait…then fine. I now wonder if I have one of those dual problems all at once happening that can really throw a troubleshoot off. I have 82K at 75k I changed the plugs. One of the plug wire ends come off with the plug and to fix it I just crimped the end down hard back into the wire and put it back on. It ran fine like that since 75k but now I wonder if the stumble is a spark issue and poss. related to that wire. Either way I am at wits end here. I have a 3 month old I have to start picking up from daycare soon so I need this all ironed out so I can depend on the truck again as I have for the past 82K. Thanks a bunch