: 2003 Escalade fuel system woes



Airdorn
03-16-13, 07:52 PM
Here's my situation:

1. I filled-up the Escalade. That's 26 gallons of fuel.

2. I drove the thing 209 miles on straight and level Interstate 40 (between Little Rock, AR and Memphis, TN)

3. Without warning the engine lost power. DTC came up indicating "bank 1 too lean, bank 2 too lean". Obviously, that meant there was no fuel getting to the engine.

4. The fuel gauge read just under 1/2 tank. After turning off/on several times, it read the same thing.

5. Turning the key ON, I could hear a brief whine from the area of the fuel tank. Pretty sure it was the fuel pump not getting gas.

6. If I let it sit for a few mins, the truck would start up, but after about a minute, I would hear that whine again from the area of the gas tank and the engine would sputter and die.

7. I had AAA deliver 3 gallons of gas. I then was able to drive the Escalade as normal to a gas station a few miles away and fill it up. I then drove it home with no further issues, which was an additional 86 miles.


I filled it up, and this happened after 209 miles. When I gassed-up, it took about 13 gallons. Add the 3 gallons AAA sold me, that makes 16 gallons. That means I had 10 gallons still in the tank; the fuel gauge was accurate.

This has happened a couple of times before; loss of power but no further problems after gassing-up.

Does anyone have any ideas about what's going on? There's several gallons still in the tank yet the engine isn't getting the fuel. Other times, I can run the thing down to near E with no problem. Yes, I know it's not a good idea to run it very low or dry.

I don't know how the fuel pump is arranged to receive the fuel, but it's almost as if it siphons from the top and it's not reaching down to the bottom of the tank.

Thanks!

the cadillac man
03-16-13, 09:32 PM
Here's my situation:

1. I filled-up the Escalade. That's 26 gallons of fuel.

2. I drove the thing 209 miles on straight and level Interstate 40 (between Little Rock, AR and Memphis, TN)

3. Without warning the engine lost power. DTC came up indicating "bank 1 too lean, bank 2 too lean". Obviously, that meant there was no fuel getting to the engine.

4. The fuel gauge read just under 1/2 tank. After turning off/on several times, it read the same thing.

5. Turning the key ON, I could hear a brief whine from the area of the fuel tank. Pretty sure it was the fuel pump not getting gas.

6. If I let it sit for a few mins, the truck would start up, but after about a minute, I would hear that whine again from the area of the gas tank and the engine would sputter and die.

7. I had AAA deliver 3 gallons of gas. I then was able to drive the Escalade as normal to a gas station a few miles away and fill it up. I then drove it home with no further issues, which was an additional 86 miles.

I filled it up, and this happened after 209 miles. When I gassed-up, it took about 13 gallons. Add the 3 gallons AAA sold me, that makes 16 gallons. That means I had 10 gallons still in the tank; the fuel gauge was accurate.

This has happened a couple of times before; loss of power but no further problems after gassing-up.

Does anyone have any ideas about what's going on? There's several gallons still in the tank yet the engine isn't getting the fuel. Other times, I can run the thing down to near E with no problem. Yes, I know it's not a good idea to run it very low or dry.

I don't know how the fuel pump is arranged to receive the fuel, but it's almost as if it siphons from the top and it's not reaching down to the bottom of the tank.

Thanks!

Sounds like the fuel pump is on its last legs mine did like this before it failed

Airdorn
03-16-13, 11:40 PM
Could you be more specific? It's an expensive part and it's hard to replace, so I wanna be sure.

The fuel pump seems to work fine. When a fuel pump is "going out", does it really work fine most of the time and then just stop working and act all weird sometimes, and then work perfect again when the tank is 100% full?

That doesn't make a lot of sense.

the cadillac man
03-17-13, 12:05 AM
Could you be more specific? It's an expensive part and it's hard to replace, so I wanna be sure.

The fuel pump seems to work fine. When a fuel pump is "going out", does it really work fine most of the time and then just stop working and act all weird sometimes, and then work perfect again when the tank is 100% full?

That doesn't make a lot of sense.

Well if you want you can get the fuel system pressure tested(this would tell us for sure if the pump is the culprit or not)

But mine did act crazy before it failed(and worked fine for a brief period before finely quitting all together) leaving me at the side of the road(and it was a hot day and my truck is black not a good combo(it got toasty quick)

Mine made a whining noise for a while before it failed(my new pump is barely audible unless you are right next to the tank)

FYI running the truck all the way to empty is asking for a quick death for the fuel pump

Airdorn
03-17-13, 01:04 AM
Mine is baely audible now, too...

It's as if the pump is mounted on the top of the tank, and it's for whatever reason not reaching all the way into the tank to siphon all the gas out. But other times, it seems to drink the gas all the way to empty.

the cadillac man
03-17-13, 01:18 AM
Mine is baely audible now, too...

It's as if the pump is mounted on the top of the tank, and it's for whatever reason not reaching all the way into the tank to siphon all the gas out. But other times, it seems to drink the gas all the way to empty.

If it sounds like it gurgling then its dead(that's how mine did when it failed)and yes the pump is mounted at the top of the tank but does reach down to the bottom of the tank in order to keep cool

Airdorn
03-17-13, 10:42 AM
No, it was a fairly high-pitched whine, what you'd expect from a pump that normally moves fluid but isn't getting any.

the cadillac man
03-17-13, 12:33 PM
No, it was a fairly high-pitched whine, what you'd expect from a pump that normally moves fluid but isn't getting any.

That high pitched whine means the pump is worn(mine is whisper quiet) but my old pump whined loudly before it failed

hotrodln
03-17-13, 06:12 PM
I just changed my fuel pump today. these are complicated pump setups- like none i've ever seen. it looks like there are two small pumps in the assembly. they also have internal hoses that need to be hooked up when you put the pump inside the tank. i think they draw gas from the far coners of the tank. so you might hear a pump running and still not get gas. if you car isnt' rusty, this isn't a bad job to do at home. get a new pump from rock auto. mine was 215 bucks....
http://s684.beta.photobucket.com/user/hotrodln/media/pump2_zpsa2aee10d.jpg.html?sort=3&o=0#/user/hotrodln/media/pump2_zpsa2aee10d.jpg.html?sort=3&o=0&_suid=1363558122578012299444883654081

http://s684.beta.photobucket.com/user/hotrodln/media/pump2_zpsa2aee10d.jpg.html?sort=3&o=0#/user/hotrodln/media/pump1_zpsb8b4e4c6.jpg.html?sort=3&o=1&_suid=1363558285906039353414698454536

the cadillac man
03-17-13, 07:49 PM
I just changed my fuel pump today. these are complicated pump setups- like none i've ever seen. it looks like there are two small pumps in the assembly. they also have internal hoses that need to be hooked up when you put the pump inside the tank. i think they draw gas from the far coners of the tank. so you might hear a pump running and still not get gas. if you car isnt' rusty, this isn't a bad job to do at home. get a new pump from rock auto. mine was 215 bucks....
http://s684.beta.photobucket.com/user/hotrodln/media/pump2_zpsa2aee10d.jpg.html?sort=3&o=0#/user/hotrodln/media/pump2_zpsa2aee10d.jpg.html?sort=3&o=0&_suid=1363558122578012299444883654081

http://s684.beta.photobucket.com/user/hotrodln/media/pump2_zpsa2aee10d.jpg.html?sort=3&o=0#/user/hotrodln/media/pump1_zpsb8b4e4c6.jpg.html?sort=3&o=1&_suid=1363558285906039353414698454536

I knew it had to be the pump though mine was changed as a assembly (mainly as I would like to prevent something else from failing but I only seen one hose in the pump but one is the pickup hose the other is a return hose

hotrodln
03-17-13, 08:36 PM
in side the tank there were two hoses that i had to disconnect to get the pump out. i suppose one is the return...the other? i'll have to look closer to see what's up with the old pump before i throw it out. I tried to see where the hoses were going inside the the tank, but they were ong and just dissapeared into the darkness!

the cadillac man
03-17-13, 09:14 PM
in side the tank there were two hoses that i had to disconnect to get the pump out. i suppose one is the return...the other? i'll have to look closer to see what's up with the old pump before i throw it out. I tried to see where the hoses were going inside the the tank, but they were ong and just dissapeared into the darkness!

Uh that's odd I only seen one on the fuel pump so idk if gm changed the design or what

(My mom has a 02 and me and my dad recently had to have it serviced because of a strong fuel smell it ended up being the pressure sensor on the top of the pump but they did pull the pump and I only seen one hose)

hotrodln
03-17-13, 09:31 PM
yeah take a look at the fuel pump pictures i posted. there are two shiney pipes sticking down below the top of the fuel pump. one was fatter than the other, but they both had hoses to hook up to them

the cadillac man
03-17-13, 09:56 PM
yeah take a look at the fuel pump pictures i posted. there are two shiney pipes sticking down below the top of the fuel pump. one was fatter than the other, but they both had hoses to hook up to them

I meant when I had mine replaced(maybe I didn't see the second hose)I do know that on is the pickup hose(possibly the larger hose) and the return hose

Airdorn
03-17-13, 11:47 PM
I just wanna know why my engine was starved of gas, even though I had just under 1/2 tank. After topping it off, it drove fine and has ever since. This event happened early yesterday.

Do fuel pumps that are "going bad" really work intermittently?

It seems more like some pickup hose isn't reaching down into the tank just right.

the cadillac man
03-18-13, 12:21 AM
I just wanna know why my engine was starved of gas, even though I had just under 1/2 tank. After topping it off, it drove fine and has ever since. This event happened early yesterday.

Do fuel pumps that are "going bad" really work intermittently?

It seems more like some pickup hose isn't reaching down into the tank just right.

As the fuel pump ages it loses pressure over time it isn't as noticeable as you might think as it happens slowly till it gets to the point it's either close to failing or just fails fully(sometime it warns you other times It DOESN'T) mine gave me a slight warning that it was on its way out not long after I got my truck then waited till I hit 150,000 miles exactly to die(I did notice a bit of lag in throttle response in the weeks before it died though)

The odd thing was I never let my truck go below a half tank weird

It had around 123,000 miles when it warned me

hotrodln
03-18-13, 08:28 AM
in any event the problem probably lies within the fuel tank. Unless your car has a gas filter? mine does not (2004). i had an old lincoln with a partially plugged gas filter that acted like you describe. the filter is part of the fuel pump setup on the 04 and up. i don't know about the 03's. but if it was inside the tank it could have a water issue....i'd either pull the tank or get somebody to do it for you.

the cadillac man
03-18-13, 12:41 PM
in any event the problem probably lies within the fuel tank. Unless your car has a gas filter? mine does not (2004). i had an old lincoln with a partially plugged gas filter that acted like you describe. the filter is part of the fuel pump setup on the 04 and up. i don't know about the 03's. but if it was inside the tank it could have a water issue....i'd either pull the tank or get somebody to do it for you.

It is the same on 03 also the 02's had a separate filter along with the strainer on the pump

Airdorn
03-18-13, 09:57 PM
Yes, the 2003 Escalade has an in-line fuel filter. It's located right along the frame on the left side, right around the driver side door.

the cadillac man
03-18-13, 10:15 PM
Yes, the 2003 Escalade has an in-line fuel filter. It's located right along the frame on the left side, right around the driver side door.

You are thinking of the 02's I have had both up on the rack and my 03 doesn't have a in line fuel filter(my mom has a 02)

Post pics if you think I am wrong as I have the gm service manual and it doesn't show a filter on the 03-06 just the 02

Airdorn
03-18-13, 11:22 PM
I know it does, I've changed it.

I have a 2003 Escalade.

Pics:

https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.2847215554112.99048.1671139837&type=3

the cadillac man
03-19-13, 12:06 AM
I know it does, I've changed it.

I have a 2003 Escalade.

Pics:

https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.2847215554112.99048.1671139837&type=3

Link don't work
I have looked in the location you mentioned and I only see the evap/or abs unit

Is it possible that mine was removed and had a line put in its place?

Airdorn
03-19-13, 12:20 AM
Bleah.

It's a link to 5 pics of my 2003 Escalade on Facebook. I'm holding the in-line fuel filter in one, and then a pic of it in place in another.

----------

http://i.imgur.com/4aB6ARm.jpg

http://i.imgur.com/FtT25bx.jpg

http://i.imgur.com/VpdbL5b.jpg

Try those.

the cadillac man
03-19-13, 02:18 AM
Bleah.

It's a link to 5 pics of my 2003 Escalade on Facebook. I'm holding the in-line fuel filter in one, and then a pic of it in place in another.

----------

http://i.imgur.com/4aB6ARm.jpg

http://i.imgur.com/FtT25bx.jpg

http://i.imgur.com/VpdbL5b.jpg

Try those.

I looked and the odd thing is my truck doesn't have a filter(yet is a 03 weird) since I know exactly where to look(had been told it was to the rear of the door) I will check and see if I had been misinformed(it has happened before)as I may have been either over looking it or not looking in the right place(it makes me wonder if gm did keep putting the cabin air filters on after 02 since the air box looks the same)