Need Help in Grants, NM; Mazda MPV

Apparently picked up bad gas in Gallup, NM Sunday. Got fuel pump and bad gas cleaned out today. Still having start up and low speed performance issues. MPV has to over-rev to get going but once up to higher speed, can go for several miles before cutting out. Local mechanic thinks it is remnant of old gas, but I can’t help but wonder about a vacuum leak or other issue. Drove 40 miles around town with no improvement today. Car now back fires at low speed. Check engine code was for air/fuel mix (sorry, no P-code). Also noticed my brakes also requires more pressure to get stopped than before (vacuum leak?, related?)

My inclination is flatbed vehicle (AAA free to me) tomorrow morning.


Any help you can provide in this case is appreciated. Will check back in about an hour after dinner out here in NM.

What is the make and model and year and mileage?

I think you should look beyond “bad gas” and find out what is REALLY going on…

Flatbed to WHERE?? They never heard of AAA in Grants…

Sorry 2001 Mazda MPV, 140K miles
Have arranged an AAA contractor flatbed to Albuquerque first thing tomorrow morning, 75 miles. That is the nearest Mazda dealer. I agree that bad gas may or may not be part of the problem. I did buy gas in Gallup, and it took 50 miles before I had the stalling. Made it to Grants Sunday nite, with fuel pump replacement and new gas (8 gas fresh/new) today. As stated above, still some stalling symptoms at low speed. Am currently not confident that the car can make the 75 miles because of the stalling about every 10-15 miles.

Any suggestions would be helpful – chose Mazda dealer because “shopping” for a good independent when you are out of state is fairly difficult. The saga continues tomorrow…

Good luck…Please let us know how this saga ends…

Lord, what a place to break down. Right up there with Tucumcari and Vega, TX.

I’m also one of those who don’t put much credence into bad gas tales. It happens now and then but not near as often as one would believe.
If bad gas is the culprit then a quart sample should be shown to prove it.

They did change the filter I hope?

I’m having a hard time seeing this car going 50 miles after a fillup before the alleged bad gas starts to take over.
As to the actual problem I have no idea without knowing if any code are present but I tend to agree with you about a vacuum leak. A large leak can cause stalling, air/fuel mix problems, and firmer brakes.

Based on that, my first step would be to connect a vacuum gauge and know for sure within a few seconds if that is the case or not.
Hope that helps and good luck. Keep us informed.

Short update. We got flatbedded to Albuquerque and are at a shop recommended both my Mechanics files and the tow truck driver. The 75 mile ride got me a good conversation about the abilities of the five or so mechanic shops in Grants. The one I used ranks towards the bottom, in the driver’s opinion. He pretty well dispelled the bad gas theory by his comments.

Codes are P0134 O2 circuit no activity detected
P1173 A/F Mixture Control
P1512 Intake Manifold Runner Control stuck closed Bank 1

Mechanic has yet to finalize the diagnosis. Focus at this time is on the fuel pump and fact it is not sealing off correctly. May know more later today.

After lunch we found that the filter/strainer was in fact clogged. In Grants, the mechanic there was told that the delay to get the filter/strainer was 3-5 days. The choice was to “clean it up” and use it, in hopes I get back on the road. No go. Here in Albuquerque they are checking unsuccessfully for the strainer/filter part. Every parts store and the two Mazda dealers have the pump but no filter/strainer. Looking at overnighting from somewhere. Clogged filter from 140K mi of use; no bad gas.

The saga goes on; more to follow.

Thanks for everyone’s moral support. This will be a story to tell over the years.
I still find it amazing since these two parts are to be exchanged together, that they aren’t available in matched pairs. This is also a good example of looking towards preventive replacement of a part designed like this. It will certainly cost me more in delay and motel expenses beyond a planned replacement would have.