Hello everyone! Thank you in advance for your time and any help. First time posting.
I have a 2000 Ford Focus SE, L4 2.0L SOHC 8V SPI.
I recently had a “turn/no-start” scenario with my engine. I checked the battery, the fuses, and the fuel pump relay and all were just fine. I narrowed it down to likely the fuel pump. I have a friend who is a mechanic (10yrs) who offered to do the job for not much at all.
During the repair: He replaced Fuel Pump Module & Fuel Filter. He discovered that the Fuel Pump Module he purchased didn’t fit in my tank, (link:https://www.autozone.com/external-engine/fuel-pump/spectra-premium-fuel-pump/637009_111969_20966) even though he double checked it’s the right part for my VIN. The problem was the plastic retainer mounted on the bottom of the tank didn’t let this new pump sit in fully. He chose to manipulate the plastic retainer to allow the new fuel pump to be fully inserted and the tank to be closed up without any leaking. (I don’t know exactly how he manipulated the plastic retainer.)
We started the car up and it worked great, sounded great. We test drove for about 7 blocks and no problems. I thanked him and left the shop, and it died on me 1 block away. From then on, it has kept dying after about 20 seconds of being in DRIVE.
Details of what happens when it dies:
- NO check engine lights & no error codes in diagnostics
- No “problem” noises from engine
- Car feels like what happens when you run out of gas, sputters in and out of momentum, then dies/coasts
- Car will immediately restart, but after so many dies/restarts it will have to sit 10-15min before starting
- Only happens when in DRIVE and moving after about 10-15 seconds
- Does NOT happen while holding brake-pushing on gas-letting go gas in DRIVE, tried hard to re-create
- In 1st or 2nd gear, it works fine cold to about 1 mile and then it felt like it was about to die, but never died
- Have not had it happen in REVERSE, NEUTRAL, PARK
- Had car towed after pump install, car would not start at all after tow, driver banged on my fuel tank - car started right up.
My gut tells me it’s either a faulty fuel pump, bad installation, or something related to the fuel not reaching the engine reliably. I saw another thread where the person said it was their Fuel Filter, but mine is brand new.
I wonder if the plastic retainer could be in the way of the fuel pump taking in fuel?
Could this be something like the Engine Computer, with no error codes?
Any thoughts and help would be SO greatly appreciated. At this moment, if I can’t figure out what’s wrong, I have to scrap the car, sadly… I’ve kept it in immaculate condition. Thank so much, once again!