99 Suburban K1500 - No Start - Fuel Pump ?

It's dark and raining here. My 1999 Suburban K1500 is stuck in a parking lot a few miles down the road and it will not start. It cranks just fine and the lights are nice and bright. There is no hint
of the engine firing even a single cylinder. My wife says there was no hint of any problem. The truck was running fine. She parked it and when she came back, it cranked but would not start.
I was having massive EGR problems and put in one of those Klean Screen units. I have heard that they can clog and make the engine hard to start. However, we both tried pumping the gas pedal to see if we could coax the thing to start and nothing. So I am thinking it may not be a clogged EGR passage.
I noticed that I don't smell any gas at all and the truck has plenty of fuel in the tank. I figure pumping the gas pedal should flood the engine ... but I smell nothing. I also noticed the truck is dead quiet. I could have sworn that the Suburban makes a loud humming noise as soon as you turn the key. I always though that humming noise was the fuel pump. If this is the case, then I believe that I that the fuel pump is not running. Perhaps the fuel pump is dead, or I have a blown fuse. Perhaps there is some problem with the oil pressure and the fuel pump has cut off. I'm not sure how to tell in the dark in the rain.
So does anyone know off hand if I should be able to hear the fuel pump running if I crank the engine over ?
I will go back to the truck tonight with the wife and have her crank the car over and I will check for arcing by the distributor cap and wires. The cap and rotor are pretty new so I highly doubt this is the problem.
I will also bring a meter and check the fuel pump fuse. Any other suggestions?
Thanks, Dan
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snipped-for-privacy@somewhere.com wrote:

The clean screen isn't the problem. Even if the EGR was plugged solid the engine would still run. Crappy once it warmed up but it would still run.
Sounds more like the fuel pump died. You should hear it run for about 2-3 seconds then shut off without the engine running. If the FP relay is bad it won't run with just the key on.
First thing to try. Go back to the fuel filler, take it off and listen for the pump when the key is turned ON. No noise = pump not turning.
It could be a bad pump or bad connection/wiring going to it.
Now you MIGHT be able to get the pump to come on if you give the bottom of the tank a solid whack with something like a chunk of wood or even your hand. Do this with the key ON and see if the pump runs then. If it does DON'T turn off the key, fire up your truck and drive it to either your place so you can drop the tank and change out the pump, OR to a shop if you want them to do it. Be prepared for the pump module to be VERY EXPENSIVE.
Oh and pumping the gas on a fuel injected engine is useless. No pump pressure = No fuel to the injector unit. There is also no accelerator pump or any other enrichment system.
--
Steve W.

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wrote:

Thanks Steve, I tried banging on the fuel tank with a rubber mallet. I could not get the pump to run. I checked the fuse box and there was a relay in there. I removed and re-seated the relay. I could not tell if the relay was bad. In any event, it did not start.
I also checked to see if there was any arcing around the distributor and coil. No ignition problems.
I have recently read that the fuel level should not go below 1/4 or the pump will no longer be submerged in fuel and can overheat. The tank was run down very low the day before the pump failed. This could have been the final straw for the old pump. I have also read that they tend to go around 100k miles. Our truck has 118k miles.
I'm not that surprised that the fuel pump/sending units are expensive. This is unfortunate but the sending unit for the fuel gage was long gone. It only read properly down to half tank then it went back to full again (until the tank was empty). As luck would have it, we tended to keep the tank reasonably full since we could never tell how low the fuel was. At least if a new pump/sending unit goes in the fuel gage will work again. We will have to make sure we don't let the level drop below 1/4.
I have actually changed one of these units (twice actually) in other vehicles. It's not that hard. You have to siphon most of the fuel and then drop the tank. Your just praying that nothing sparks in the area. Well, I'm not doing it this time. I had the truck towed to the shop. We will see what the guy says.
Thanks, Dan
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snipped-for-privacy@somewhere.com wrote:

It's one of those try it moves. I have had it work a few times. Beats paying a tow bill.
On the earlier trucks you needed to worry about the fuel level. The later ones (95 and up) have a different style pump that actually has a housing around it that holds extra fuel to keep the pump cool. It is also why you can't replace just the pump on the later units.
--
Steve W.
Near Cooperstown, New York
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Big snip
Have a helper turn on the ignition while you bang the tank at the same time. Pump only runs a few seconds on a no run power up so doing it solo isn't enough time to get to the tank. I've started a few that way. It's the bang/power on at the same time that gets them running if they are gonna go that way.
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On Wed, 30 Apr 2008 07:34:20 -0400, "Repairman"

Well, I talked to the shop and it's definitely the pump. I need the sending unit as well since it has been gone for years. Labor is about $80 - $100, no big deal. The part is of course incredibly expensive. So, now I have one more failure under the belt.
Thanks, Dan
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From what I hear, Viagra may help with that.
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