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Where is the Fuel Filter?

I have a beloved 1985 Plymouth Colt and I have this nagging problem; It’s very, very hard to start and when it actually DOES start, it runs for only a few seconds and then stalls out. I suspect it’s the fuel filter that’s clogged but the problem is… I can’t FIND it!! I have a non-turbo Plymouth Colt with the 1.5 liter engine. I have the original owner’s manual and it says to change the fuel filter every 12,000 miles but it doesn’t say WHERE it is! Can anyone help me?? :grinning:

Look for a small plastic container under the hood that looks like the pic below, which is the filter Rockauto says is for your engine. Your car still has a carburetor, so it shouldn’t be hard to follow the hose between the filter and carb.

We had a 83 colt but it had the smaller of the 2 motors. 1.5 or 1.6L? Seems the mechanical fuel pump was mounted to side of ohc head and driven by the cam. Guess it was old school of sorts. Ohc and mech fuel pump. Had the twisted mikuni carb with hot coolant passage for choke operation. Worked ok, mostly.

My son had a Plymouth Champ twin-stick that was made 79 to 82. Don’t remember the year of his but the name was changed to Colt for 83. His was acting like yours and then is stopped starting altogether. Turned out the eccentric on the cam that drove the fuel pump wore out, put an electric fuel pump on it and it ran until rust killed it. Only twin stick car I ever saw but I drove a lot of twin stick trucks in the days when the Diesels only had a 300 rpm operating range 1800 to 2100 rpm.

Thanks for the reply but I don’t think that’s it. The car only has just over 38,000 miles on it:exclamation::blush:

the carb did have a sight glass on the side of the bowl. that was my clue there was no fuel. i dont recall ever changing or seeing a fuel filter. but that was 20+yrs ago.

If this is the problem, then the carb would be running dry, right? If that’s the case you shouldn’t see any gas squirt when you have the air cleaner off and pump the gas while looking down the carb. Is that the case?

Alternate explanation - your choke’s sticking, or something else in this ancient carb is messed up.

But sure, change the fuel filter, it needs it regardless.

I add a bottle of carb cleaner to my fuel every year whether I need it or not. I hope it’s kept my carb from fouling; when I rebuilt it earlier this year I was surprised at how clean it was 30 years along. I don’t know that the carb cleaner made a difference, but it didn’t cost much.

Some models of this car have an in-line fuel filter, and other have an in-tank fuel filter, part of the fuel pump ass’y. Unfortunately I can’t tell which models have which arrangement. It seems like you could trace the fuel line from the carb back towards the tank and if you don’t see a canister fuel filter along the way it must be with the pump. On my Corolla the in-line canister fuel filter is on the firewall, most easily seen and accessed from the front left tire well, if that’s of any help.

I doubt the start and stall is the fuel filter’s fault, but no harm to change it. I expect you’ve got a problem with the carb/air induction system, some kind of clog, probably needs a clean out. Or the cat could be clogged. If it won’t start after it stalls, make sure you’ve got spark of course, to rule out ignition system involvement.