p1211, low icp at full throttle, what next? - Ford Powerstroke Diesel Forum
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Old 04-23-2014, 01:26 PM
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p1211, low icp at full throttle, what next?

Hey everybody, new to the forum, thanks in advance! Recently purchased at 2001 econoline box van with the 7.3. The van was a delivery vehicle with 320k miles on it. Came with full service records since 120k. Appears to have been well maintained with regular oil changes and a new motor at 200k. The issue I'm having is that is the SES light comes on at full throttle, giving a p1211 code. Put on a new ICP sensor and same thing. Hooked up my laptop to the OBD2 using FORscan and found that at full throttle I was only achieving 2200psi ICP with the IPR maxed out at 65% duty cycle. From what I've read, 2800psi is what the motor is looking for and this should be achievable with <50% duty cycle. Boost was at 13psi, so I guess I'm not getting full power from the motor due to low oil pressure at the injectors. Does that sound correct?

Not sure what to do next. I'm guessing I need a fresh HPOP pump but that's $500 and I want to be sure that will fix the problem. From researching I see a couple of possible causes, but haven't seen anybody with the exact same scenario. Hoping somebody can help me decide what to do next. Here are the possible problems as I understand it:

1. low fuel pressure can cause p1211. I did look in my tank and the pre-filters are not clogged. Could still be a bad pump - should I next check the fuel pressure under load? Don't see how this would affect ICP pressure.

2. a leak in the HPOP system can cause p1211. I fixed a leaky hpop fitting on the passenger side head and cleaned up the motor. Haven't seen any additional leaks since, but I understand that the injector o-rings can leak. Should I perform the the pressure test where I disconnect the heads in turn and check ICP pressure? Would it be better to pull the valve covers and look for oil leaking from the injector seats? Haven't seen any oil in the fuel.

3. sludge in the HPOP reservoir or a dirty IPR can cause p1211. I pulled the reservoir and it didn't look bad. Don't have the right socket for the IPR but working on that. not sure how this could cause low ICP pressure since the IPR relieves pressure, so wouldn't a clog cause pressure to be too high?

4. a bad HPOP pump can cause the p1211. guessing this is it. have priced out a terminator t500 pump for $450 which is about the same cost as stock.

Anybody have any feedback on my problem? Thanks again!
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Old 04-23-2014, 03:24 PM
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I am guessing your hpop is bad, also, check the little allen plugs under the valve covers, they have little o rings on them 2 plugs on each side. When they blow out you could have low pressure, but hows your icp at idle and what the ipr at idle? If its around 9-13 ipr% and like around 450-550 icp pressure then your probably ok. My hpop causes problems at wide open also, but swamps diesel said my injectors could be worn also, so i am doing both at the same time.
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Old 04-23-2014, 03:29 PM
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thanks mastertech! ICP at idle is around 400psi with IPR duty cycle at 10%. Hoping to avoid pulling the valve covers since I have a van and it looks like a PITA. Is there a good way to tell if the injectors are bad?
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Old 04-23-2014, 03:42 PM
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my guess is pump or injector o rings. low fuel pressure wont cause your icp and ipr % to do that. I was dropping to 36 fuel psi under WOT and still had 2700-2800 icp and 39% ipr.
double check fuel filter for oil (25 bucks and is easiest) next pull valve covers and watch for oil coming out along sides of injector and if any of the oil deflector spouts seem weaker than the rest. after I checked all that than I'd replace the hpop
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Old 04-23-2014, 03:48 PM
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a buzz test will help determine if it could be weak or not working electrically. no great way of knowing if an injector is bad unless it just isn't working but there are some ways to help. no oil coming from deflector spout, rough idle, some white smoke on cold start (only after glow plug system is verified to be working)
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Old 04-23-2014, 04:57 PM
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If you have a scan tool that will do cylinder contrubution tests then you could try that, also an injector buzz test when engine cold. Also, check the oil spouts on the sides of the injectors near the coils, it will be spitting oil out of them while running. As strokin-7.3 said, and you do that test running with the valve covers off. Check your fuel filter to see if there is oil in there, black in color. This would indicate bad injector o rings. How does the truck run at idle? Pretty smooth? Any visible smoke out the tailpipe? If it runs smooth and no smoke, then injectors probably ok, for 300k anyways. Injectors last around 200k+ miles, and if the hpop is that old, its probably due. It stinks its a van, but it could be worse, you could have a 6.0 that needs injectors every 100k. Not bashing 6.0's, ive got one, and love it, but more maintenance required. Do you run a programmer or chip at all? If you do, this could be taxing the hpop as well. The hpop on these barely keep up stock wise let alone with a chip. I just bought the srp1.1 pump for my 7.3, haven't got around to putting it in yet though. good luck to you.
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Old 04-23-2014, 05:53 PM
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is the van tuned?

cheap off the shelf programmers commonly throw a p1211
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Old 04-23-2014, 09:27 PM
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Thanks for all the responses! Motor runs smooth at idle, no smoke to speak of. Didn't see oil in the fuel filter, but didn't really look - would I see that on the filter after it's been drained? No chip or programmer. According to the service log, the motor only has 120k, but who really knows? Fleet maintained with regular oil changes, but guessing it was driven HARD. PS I did change the oil (rotella 5W40) and checked the level, which didn't change anything.

Sounds like I should run the cylinder contribution test and buzz test next to check on the condition of the injectors. Don't think I can do that with FORscan (it will show percent delta) but my buddy has a snap-on $10000 machine I might be able to use. Trying to wrap my head around how to run the engine with the valve covers off - can't even see the valve covers with the intake, heater hose and alternator in place! Will update when I have more info.
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Old 04-24-2014, 03:12 AM
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Is there a dog house in the cab that you can remove? If so, remove that, you will gain the much needed room to work on it. I did cylinder heads on one of these, and it was a bear, next time the engines coming out, lol. you could probably take a fuel sample from your filter water drain, but looking at the filter would be best. Im not too sold on the 5w40 for the 7.3's, but someone else may chime in, Mine always ran better with rotella 15w40. I run 5w40 in the 6.0 and it likes that. 5w40 is synthetic and thinner. just a thought.
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Old 04-24-2014, 06:44 AM
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Yeah there is pretty good access from the dog house, but tight clearance on the passenger side head. The manual calls for pulling the motor mounts and resting it on the crossmember for injector work. I checked and I did use 14W40.
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