Running out of ideas, engine keeps quitting - Ford Powerstroke Diesel Forum
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Old 08-21-2013, 08:50 PM
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Running out of ideas, engine keeps quitting

Im having a frustrating problem with my 2003 Ford e350 van. Im stumped. It has always run perfectly but here recently has been harder to start, I've had to crank it longer- but once it started it still ran perfectly until recently when it sat for a couple of weeks not being used. I changed the fuel filter. It sat and idled after I did that, I drove it for about a block and then it quit. The fuel filter and bowl were very dirty with sediment and rust in the bottom. I drained the bowl and wiped it out but it still would not start. I next checked the gps and tested each glow plug, all tested fine and probably aren't the problem anyway since it is eighty degrees here. I took the idm out of my 98 and put it in the 03 to check that. I bought a scanner from harbor freight, it showed no codes (I'm still not sure if this OBDII scanner is correct anyway). I checked the fuses in the box under the hood and the relays. I checked the oil level in the HPOP, it appeared to be only half full so I filled it to within an inch of the top. I replaced the cps and I pulled a check valve out of the passenger rear head and nothing changes the fact that it cranks and cranks, then finally starts and runs for ten seconds and dies. Then it's even harder to start unless you let it sit for a long time. I pulled the fuel filter out again, removed the check valve from the pickup tube.

Somebody please tell me what else i can check! Is this scan tool correct for egging codes from a diesel van? All I was trying to do was change the fuel filter. I have not checked injectors. Do you think the injectors are plugged? Why would it start and then die? Any suggestions?

This is the nicest vehicle I have ever owned. It's an Explorer extended conversion van with six huge captains chairs and a motorized bench bed. My wife has been trying to talk me into selling one of the vans to get her a little commuter car, and this is not helping me convince her otherwise!
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Old 08-22-2013, 07:25 AM
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i wanna say ,you have a lpop issue with it not filling the hpop resivoir, AND a restriction issue in the fuel tank. Look up HUTCH mod, and go from there.
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Old 08-22-2013, 11:14 AM
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Lpop issue? Tell me more about this. I don't want to have to do any mods if I can help it. It was running fine before. What do I need to do to check for a fuel restriction. Btw it is filling the filter bowl fine and when I took loose the check valve on the back passenger head it was flowing there as well.
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Old 08-29-2013, 06:32 AM
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Update: I feel like an idiot but it wouldn't run because it was 9 quarts low on oil!! I had just changed it so it didnt cross my mind.Ok now my problem is where did it all go? I refilled it and it still starts hard but better. It smokes some white smoke upon start up but then quits and runs ok but it seems to lack power it once had. I drove it a few miles and then inspected for leaks. It used 2 quarts of oil!! I can't visibly see any leaks. Unless I carry a 55 gallon drum of rotella and pump it in while driving I'll need to figure out where the heck it's all going. Reading threads it sounds like the turbo or injectors. How would I rule out the turbo without replacing it? I'm leaning toward injectors and it looks like one HORRIBLE job. there doesn't seem to be very much info on doing injectors in a van. Huh, maybe people can't type or use there arms anymore after the contortion expedition needed to do what looks like an impossible job!? Any of you done this? Any tips? Would air tools help? It's almost impossible to reach in there let alone see and remove parts. I'm thinking removing the front seats might help. Thanks
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Old 09-03-2013, 12:27 PM
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ID say you damaged the injectors also. Do a buzz test and see which ones are bad. Maybe you didn't hurt all of them. You'll have to pull the doghouse inside and do most from inside the van.

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Old 09-04-2013, 08:27 AM
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One place the oil can be going is into your fuel system via bad injector O-rings. I just had this problem.

Burning oil

I'm not sure on vans but I ruled out the turbo by looking in the intercooler inlet tube for signs of excess oil. Mine was dry, however my crankcase is vented to atmosphere rather than into the air intake so any oil present would have to come from the turbo itself.

Last edited by Ether Baby; 09-04-2013 at 08:31 AM.
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Old 10-18-2013, 05:00 PM
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You were right on the money! It was the injector O-rings. Whew! What a huge job. I was able to take the 55-gallon drum of oil out, LOL. JK, it now runs as great as ever and uses no oil whatsoever. What a relief. Thanks for the great advice. This van had never let me down before and I was starting to panic. It feels like a brand-new engine. With only 265,000 miles on it, it might as well be. The bad news is that my wife is making me sell it. She wants a little commuter car and our other 7.3 van seats more and with my mother and the seven kids living with us, we need all the seats we can get.
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