Yesterday I drove out of town for about 150 miles, then stopped for a couple of hours. Returning, the temperature was very hot and humid outside, so I ran the air all the way. I stopped about 30 miles outside my destination for about an hour, returned to my car and continued driving. Once I reached home, driving continually on interstate. About 10 miles from home I noticed a sensation of the car maybe losing power, but I kept going. Finally , I reached a stop light about 5 miles from home. When I stopped the car went dead with no warning lights, shaking, or overheating. It would start, but as soon as I took my foot off the gas it would go dead again. I sat with the engine off for about 5 minutes. It restarted and ran with no problems. I thought it might be vapor lock, but I’m learning that vapor lock doesn’t happen in cars much anymore. What’s going on?
Vapor lock in modern fuel injection vehicles is very rare. However, in a previous forum, posters gave instances where vapor lock has happened to them with fuel injected vehicles. The solution was to pour cold water on the fuel manifolds leading to the injectors.
I was wondering if the problem might be exascerbated by a low fuel level in the tank. You don’t mention how low the fuel was in the tank. So the next time you think this might happen, fill up and see if the problem does not occur. If the problem seems to be occurring when the tank is less than 1/4 full, you might need to replace the fuel pump. If this 10 year old vehicle has bookoo miles on it, consider the fuel pump suspect, anyway.
Also, I was wondering if there might be a vacuum being drawn in the fuel tank. The next time this happens take off the gas cap; listen for a hissing that might be a inrush of air; remove the cap; and then put it back on. If the problem abates, please post back with the results. If the tank has drawn a sizeable vacuum, you might have the gas cap and the evaporation recovery system looked at.
Hope this helps.
Thank you for your response.
I actually had about 3/4 of a tank of gas when this incident occurred. This has never happened in the 10 years I’ve had the car. I drove it again about an hour later, and then today. The engine is running very smoothly and there’s no indication that I ever had the problem. The engine light isn’t even on. But now I’m paranoid that it’s going to happen again. Should I be concerned about that?