: '96 Flt Brgh dies intermittently. Rep Feul pump & harnes



Sticks
12-09-09, 10:36 AM
Greetings everyone.

I hope that someone here can help me out.

About me - I am a Diesel Engine specialist. I hate gas burners. I have decent overall diagnostic skills. I work as a field service technician for a paving company. I have the tools, but lack the gas engine specific diagnostic abilities beyond an entry level tech (but above most service managers/writers)

1996 Fleetwood Brougham, 58k miles.
Symptoms - Starts then dies after 1 - 10 minuets. Intermittent. Ambient temps 2 - 30*F. Engine temp 100-180*F.

History - OK, this is the wife's car. The first time this happened it was 30ish degrees out, and the engine was running for 10 minuets or so, then died at a stoplight. She was able to roll the car out of traffic and park it. I arrived 2 hours later and was able to start the car, and drive it home. That weekend I started the diagnostics with what I had available. The only DTC (0410?) was for the secondary air injection system (set Check Engine light for last 15k miles, run the DTC tree several times, unable to find any problems :banghead: ) Engine started then died after a couple of minuets - NOTE engine died after I turned on Defroster and Defog). Connected laptop OBDII scan tool and did not see anything out of normal in the data stream. Symptoms fit failing fuel pump.

Replaced fuel pump and wire harness to pump from sending unit. Replaced fuel filter. Terminals and old harness were not burned or corroded. Engine started as normal and fuel pressure OK. Drove 300 miles (city) with no problems.

Yesterday the wife took the car to run some errands. Drive approx 5 miles. After 20 min of being parked (amb temp 7*f and falling) the car started then died after 1 minute. Would not restart.

I arrived after 15 minuets, car would start, idle rough and slow, then die. It would immediately die if I attempted to apply throttle. Has fuel pressure but I am not sure how much (by depressing the schrader valve - did not have my gauges). Unable to verify if fuel is aerated - READ - lots of air bubbles) Looked like it might be. Climate control system is off.

I started running through the basics but the temp dropped to 2*, I could not feel my fingers anymore, and the battery was dieing.

I have the factory service manuals and have been reviewing the diagnostic procedures for hard start and rough idle/stalling. I did find a few items that may be suspect, including the climate control system (loss of vacuum).


1. Is there any known issues or problems with this model and year that fit this problem (I.E. Relay failure, wire harness rub through at certain place, Vacuum lines, Sensor failure...)

2. Any specific items I should check first by default for this problem?

3. If I understand the manual correctly, if this is a MAF sensor problem, the vehicle should start and run under secondary default info (IAT, TP, and RPM) with the MAF sensor disconnected? Other vehicles that I have worked on in the past would not start or run with failed or disconnected MAF.

4. Any body in the Denver CO area willing to give me a hand with this?

thefleetwoodguy
12-09-09, 01:18 PM
missed some of this post

how old is your optispark cap??
also have you run the diagnostics??
it can be read through the a/c controller

thefleetwoodguy
12-09-09, 02:25 PM
I/M/O
if you didnt sand the 4 terminals
on the sender (in tank), even if they look OK
thats where my best guess is
those little bastards have to be shiny clean
I soldered mine and did away with the plastic connector
, if you can get it in its "no start" mode
and check the fuel pressure that should tell you
also take off the fuel cap, and have someone listen to see if
the f/p is cycling , it should run for 1-2 seconds when the key is turned
to the run position, that should help zero in on things
at 58k the cap is most likely ok,(gen good for 100k) unless the water pump is weeping through the weep hole, hope you have a heated garage!!

Sticks
12-09-09, 07:18 PM
missed some of this post

how old is your optispark cap??

OK, I'm a Mopar/Dodge guy, and a Diesel guy. I presume this is the distributor/coil pack located behind the harmonic balancer (who's bright idea was it to make it so you have to pull the water pump to replace that anyhow)?


also have you run the diagnostics??
it can be read through the a/c controller

I looked into that when we first bought the car from Grampa's estate, and succeeded in getting it to show the codes once (PITA), but I now have a good laptop OBDII program installed on my laptop, so pulling and reading codes and data stream are a non issue (can not post link or details due to forum restrictions). I was not aware that GM had KOEO and KOER engine diagnostics built into the OBDII compliant ECM like the Ford vehicles do. I now have a buddy who has a Snap On Scanner assisting me.

Details or link to instructions on this diagnostic test through the environmental control module?


I/M/O
if you didnt sand the 4 terminals
on the sender (in tank), even if they look OK
thats where my best guess is
those little bastards have to be shiny clean
I soldered mine and did away with the plastic connector
, if you can get it in its "no start" mode
and check the fuel pressure that should tell you
also take off the fuel cap, and have someone listen to see if
the f/p is cycling , it should run for 1-2 seconds when the key is turned
to the run position, that should help zero in on things
at 58k the cap is most likely ok,(gen good for 100k) unless the water pump is weeping through the weep hole, hope you have a heated garage!!

OK, further update after freezing in the balmy 10* weather for another hour.

Now the fuel pump is not working. Cycled the relay several times, Relay is working (need to verify electrical signal going out to the fuel pump) but no fuel at the schrader valve, and no audible noise from the tank. Possible electrical connection, also possible bad pump (Car Quest branded). New pump purchased and going to be triple checking the fuel pump and wiring Friday.

The fuel sending unit wiring problem on GM vehicles is global. I've had to replace wire harness and fuel sending units on a number of GM make vehicles. My connections were good inside the tank. External connections may be suspect.

ALSO

No Crank Shaft Sensor output signal on the scanner, intermittent spark at the distributor (one of the plug wires).

Going to be doing more detailed diagnostics when I get the car towed home.

My buddy said that the Crank Sensor and the Ignition Module (?) - (located left front corner of the engine above the air pump/coil) were 2 big areas of problem on this engine, and the distributor may also be an issue.

My history with the vehicle in the 25k miles we put on it, has only been oil changes, thermostat, coolant, serpentine belt, 2 batteries, alternator and tires. Prior history is unknown (Grampa passed in '05). As far as I know everything else is OEM. Car has been driven nicely (not abused). Lack of actual basic gauges prevents me form knowing whether or not it is running hot, oil pressure, alternator output, etc.

Keep the suggestions coming. I need to get this car running reliably ASAP. The wife is getting cranky.

thefleetwoodguy
12-09-09, 07:53 PM
if the pumps not cycling
look between the r/bumper and fuel tank theres a 4 prong plug
unplug that, if you get a 12v signal body side of plug(*grey wire I think)
for 1-2 seconds then you know the pump isnt getting its prime
I would try that first, the optispark ign isnt as bad as you here
the early versions that were not vented sucked ass
but the fleetwoods are all vented, I have 190k on a factory one
with only 1 cap change at 112k
I would try to get the pump working first
I d still bet on those prongs,
ya Im a mopar guy for sure, but love these 94-96 fltwds brghms
good luck were pulling for ya
www.thefleetwodguy.com

SDCaddyLacky
12-09-09, 10:57 PM
Sorry for raiding in on this thread, but just the other day my 94 Fleetwood Bro also died when at a stop light for no reason. The gas gauge read 3 bars, so it looked like I had some gas in the tank.

Well I recently dropped the gas tank about 2 weeks ago to fix a vapor leak that was coming from the sending unit, I found that when the previous owner installed a subwoofer in the trunk, he accidentally drilled a very tiny hole in the vapor metal line from what I found after looking like crazy for the source of the fumes.

So my question is, is it possible that I could of messed up the sending unit when I lowered the tank? Because obviously things were fine before, and the gauge read accurately. The only thing that I could of done was when I raised the tank I could of pressed too hard on the jack and possibly squeezed something inside the tank. The fuel pump is fine and I have no issues with fuel getting to the engine. But what could cause my fuel gauge to not read properly? Oh BTW I did run out of gas at the stop light, once I added a gallon of gas, the car started right up.

Thanks guys