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Fuel Pump question on a 94 Z28

Post questions and answers about your engine problems.. What is this ticking sound I hear while starting? Engine not turning over? Problems with your battery... alternator? Find out here.

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stormgtx1
Posted: Sun Oct 04, 2009 3:45 am
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I want to know if anyone, preferably with a 4th gen, knows what the symptoms are for a fuel pump that is starting to go out. Thing is the last time I drove my car on Friday, the engine felt a bit sluggish, but this was without any of the spark plugs getting disconnected. So I'm hoping someone can help me figure out what the problem is before I go spending hundreds of dollars on replacing the fuel pump when it may never have been that to begin with.
 

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ins0mnia24
Posted: Tue Oct 06, 2009 1:55 pm
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Sounds like it could either be an Ignition problem or fuel problem..

To know if it is a fuel problem you will need a gauge to check the fuel pressure at idle, then while driving, driving w.o.t. ect,ect..
But then again what you describe also sounds like an ignition problem like Coil, Optispark, Wires ect...
You could try changing the fuel filter also..

If you don't have the proper tools you should take to some one that has the tools and knows what they are doing..
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RSCAMAROGUY91
Posted: Tue Oct 06, 2009 6:04 pm
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One thing I've seen with the higher output fuel pumps like required on the newer engines is that when the pump goes it goes, there is usually no warning, unless you check it. To me your issues sounds ignition related, which is where I would start because the pump is probably going to be a pain.
1991 RS Camaro with a fresh 355 ci Small Block with several mods.
 

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ins0mnia24
Posted: Tue Oct 06, 2009 6:25 pm
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RSCAMAROGUY91 wrote:
One thing I've seen with the higher output fuel pumps like required on the newer engines is that when the pump goes it goes, there is usually no warning, unless you check it. To me your issues sounds ignition related, which is where I would start because the pump is probably going to be a pain.


In Reality with these cars it happens opposite as you describe..
It only takes a couple minutes to attach a psi gauge to the fuel rail to confirm that the amount of fuel the engine is getting is within spec..
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95camaro85ta
Posted: Tue Oct 06, 2009 8:17 pm
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haha
88 camaro iroc z TBI 350-auto
85 trans am- parts car 350-auto
85 trans am- 355 sbc, wc t5...damn near everything new...
97 k2500 350 vortec 5 speed
 

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stormgtx1
Posted: Wed Oct 07, 2009 9:55 pm
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I think you're most like right about it not sounding like the fuel pump. Early afternoon today, the car decided to up the ante for a bit. In a parking lot, I started the car to where it was idling okay for about the first second before I put it into drive. The moment I did, the revs dropped so low to where the car was struggling just to keep the engine going before it died two seconds later. I put it back into park and tried again, but it did the same thing in park as well. Tried again with a little gas; no good. Turned off the A/C and gave it more gas; no good. Seventh try, I progressively gave it more gas after starting it to where it was almost to the floor. The engine still struggled while somewhat sounding a bit stronger, until finally the revs started coming back up to where the engine was operating at normal. I headed to a garage in case it would do it again, but it never did since then. I'm thinking that it sounds like the coil if it's affecting the entire engine and not just one plug. Talk about a close call being on a birthday as well.
 

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ins0mnia24
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You can almost completely rule out the fuel pump easily the next time it stalls out on you..
Before you restart it, Just turn the key to on and listen towards the back of the car for the fuel pump to turn on..
You will hear some buzzing in the back of the car..
The fuel pump turns on prior to the engine starting so that fuel system can be pressurized in order to keep the engine running..
It isnt 100% but it is the only thing you can do without having a pressure gauge..

The Coil and Optispark you need a Voltage meter if you don't have one, then you are S.O.O.L.

Hopefully it is just a coil for your sake anyways..

Plan on replacing the Optispark because that is what it sounds like to me :lol:
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RSCAMAROGUY91
Posted: Thu Oct 08, 2009 7:54 am
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ins0mnia24 wrote:
You can almost completely rule out the fuel pump easily the next time it stalls out on you..
Before you restart it, Just turn the key to on and listen towards the back of the car for the fuel pump to turn on..
You will hear some buzzing in the back of the car..
The fuel pump turns on prior to the engine starting so that fuel system can be pressurized in order to keep the engine running..
It isnt 100% but it is the only thing you can do without having a pressure gauge..

The Coil and Optispark you need a Voltage meter if you don't have one, then you are S.O.O.L.

Hopefully it is just a coil for your sake anyways..

Plan on replacing the Optispark because that is what it sounds like to me :lol:


Yeah, listening is going to be the best way without gauges to check the fuel pump.
1991 RS Camaro with a fresh 355 ci Small Block with several mods.
 

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stormgtx1
Posted: Sun Oct 11, 2009 2:52 pm
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I may have another theory about what's causing my car to act up, but right now I don't have any assurance that it is true. Last time I fueled up, I used pro gas from BP instead of Gate like I normally do. I've yet to actually start moving around alot to see if that was the cause, though as ridiculous as it sounds. Nevertheless, I should be able to deduct whether or not the fuel quality had anything to do with it. For now, I've crossed off the fuel pump being the issue.

Note 10/12/09: Fuel quality theory is now bust. Moving onto checking ignition parts.
 

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RSCAMAROGUY91
Posted: Mon Oct 12, 2009 6:09 pm
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Good Luck! I too would say the fuel theory is a bust.
1991 RS Camaro with a fresh 355 ci Small Block with several mods.
 

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stormgtx1
Posted: Tue Nov 03, 2009 10:56 pm
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Update: I've scheduled my car for an inspection on the ignition system this Thursday. Here's to hoping the problem gets discovered and turns out to be cheap to fix
 

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ins0mnia24
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Like I already said it is probably the Optispark
Unless you have never changed the plug or wires on that car..

Don't let them replace the coil unless they are going to take it back if it ends up being Optispark..
There is diagnostic steps for the Optispark beside some mis informed mechanic just slapping ignition parts on the car..
Especially if the problem is constant...
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ins0mnia24
Posted: Thu Nov 05, 2009 7:59 pm
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RSCAMAROGUY91 wrote:
Good Luck! I too would say the fuel theory is a bust.


You are 100% useless in this topic...
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stormgtx1
Posted: Fri Mar 12, 2010 3:52 pm
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I can now finally update this thread. Over the past several months, I had the spark plugs and wires replaced, as well as the rotor and cap for my distributor. Turns out the rotor and cap were damaged due to wear and tear. I would love to think that the problem has been fixed, but the car is still wanting to play games with me. The garage also had cleaned out my K&N air filter, so they think that some recharging oil had managed to get onto the mass air flow sensor, causing the car to starve for air. Even though we have deducted that the fuel pump isn't at fault here, I still want to take a look at the fuel filter, and see if that thing may be clogged.
 

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ins0mnia24
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Yeh what happens with your MAF when that oil gets on the MAF elements is it can give false readings to the PCM making it think either to much or not enough air is entering the engine..
So it will over or under compensate fuel, timing ect thinking that is what is required...
For automatics that will also mess up the Transmission functions since the PCM use's the MAF to determine engine load..

What exactly do you mean by It wants to play games with you?? Try to describe it as best as possible..
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stormgtx1
Posted: Sat Mar 13, 2010 2:24 am
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I didn't mean to sound confusing. What I meant was that I was still experiencing the car's engine wanting to bog down to where it's threatening to die on me. Basically, it would be acting the exact same as it was before I began trying to find the bad component that was causing the problem in the first place. Anyway, I hope that using some throttle body cleaner will clean the sensor up.
 

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ins0mnia24
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Before they replaced your Opt, wires and plugs did any one actually check your fuel pressure at the fuel rail and make sure it was within spec for your car?
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stormgtx1
Posted: Sat Mar 13, 2010 10:31 am
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I'm afraid not. I did tell the auto shop guys that I was concerned about the fuel pump being bad, but they told me that the fuel pump is more used for priming the car's fuel to the engine before you start the car rather than always staying active while the engine is running. And since the car would only begin its random bogging down at least 30 seconds after I start the car, I had reason to believe them. I did ask my father if he thought they were trying to pull a fast one, but one of the senior guys working at that shop is practically family to us, so he trusts them more than virtually any other auto shop for my car in the city.
 

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ins0mnia24
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Think about this for a second...
If they said or thought the problem was the plugs, wires and opti because they looked worn/damaged and they just replaced it without actually diagnosing and checking them a long with the coil..
And you are still having the problem then they did not fix it...
Did you ever ask them if they tested any of it??

They should have really properly checked all of that a long with the fuel pressure, Even though the pump is working it does no mean the rest of the system is working could be a leaky injector, Fuel regulator bleed off, Check valve in the pump bleeding off, ect
And the only way to check that is to put a pressure gauge on the fuel rail it is no different or any harder than checking your tire pressure and it only takes 10-20 minutes...

A new fuel filter certainly wouldn't hurt since you brought it up especially if you do not know if it has ever been changed you are only talking $7 and it would definitely be better to change it before any diagnosing of the fuel system...

And when you say it starts acting up 30 seconds after starting the car..
Do you let the car warm up before you drive it??
The reason I ask is because when you first start your engine when it is cold the Pcm does not use the O2 sensors for readings until the engine is at operating temperature 185 degree's...
So if it runs fine when it is cold until it reaches 185 degree's you might have an O2 sensor issue..
So try to pay attention with what is going on with your temp gauge and if it is above 185 or not when it acts up..
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stormgtx1
Posted: Mon Mar 15, 2010 12:41 am
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The day before yesterday, my father and I had taken the mass airflow sensor off of the intake and cleaned it with throttle body cleaner. While we were at it, we also cleaned the throttle body as well. As it turns out, the rubber "air neck" (can't think of a name) connecting the MAC to the air filter tube was never seated properly for a long time, possibly before I even had the car to begin with. We set it in hot water to try and get it to be more flexible so it could sit on the MAC like it should be. Yesterday afternoon, I changed the oil on the car. I was also wanting to change out the fuel filter, and I did ask my father if he had a fuel pressure gauge, which he did not. However, I do not currently have the special tool required to disconnect the fuel filter, so I'll run up to Advance Auto this afternoon to pick one up. I'll also ask about fuel pressure gauges while I'm at it. In any case, I did do a late night food run tonight, and my car never acted up once while I was out. And to answer your question about warming the car up, I'm sorry to say that I give it only about ten to fifteen seconds before I put it in gear, especially when I get in a hurry. I'm going to try and wait a bit longer, but I do not know how long you should let the car warm up for. However since I'm living in Florida, I never thought it would be an issue given the weather down here. Nevertheless no matter whether the problem is now finally fixed or not, I greatly appreciate all the help you have given me. Thank you, Insomnia.
 

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