My truck is a 1500 Ram 2001, with a 318 auto 2wd.
Well today I went to start the truck and it didn't want to start at
all. I have had no previous signs, or indications of problems.
I really felt like it was a fuel problem, and I didn't have a guage
for measuring fuel rail pressure, so I did some shade tree mechanics
and poured gas in the throttle body and it fired right up,
(temporarily). My question is should I assume it's the fuel pump or
can I have something like a sensor or fuse gone bad?
The tuneup is less then two weeks old.
Any help will certainly be appreciated...
Turn the ignition on, and stick your head under the gas tank - see if you
can hear the fuel pump running. If not, check the fuel pump relay in the
PDC. Trigger voltage for the relay comes off of a 10A fuse in the fuse
block (should be #9). You should read +12V with the ignition on at the fuel
pump relay terminal #86. Supply voltage for the fuel pump itself comes off
of a 20A fuse in the PDC. You should read +12V off of the fuel pump relay
terminal #30 at all times. If these check out, you can (temporarily) bypass
the relay by jumpering terminal #30 to terminal #87 (the terminals are
numberd on the bottom of the relay, but obviously you want to do all your
measuements and jumperings on the relay socket).
Finally, you may not have a fuel gauge, but if your fuel rail has a test
port (should be on the middle of the left fuel rail - driver's side), wrap
some rags around it, and after cycling the ignition (to get the pump to
pressurize the rail), depress the schrader valve (carefully - fuel will [or
in your case, may] spray out), and see if you get a strong spray of fuel.
If you don't, you're not building rail pressure. But you really should get
One easy thing to check. Hit the bottom of the tank with a short 2X4. Hold
it flat and just "thump" the bottom of the tank. Then see if it starts. If
it does you're looking at a bad fuel pump.
On my Dodge the fuel fitting at the top of the tank where the fuel comes out
was made of plastic and it broke in half. So the pump ran but no fuel came
out of the tank. I removed the broken stuff and made a new fitting out of
brass parts from a hardware store and cemented it in with epoxy. There was a
plastic hose wrapped around the pump and going up to the top of the tank. It
was hard as a rock, so I replaced it with rubber hose.
Tom, thanks for all the great advice, I also did another little trick
with testing the fuel pump relay, inside the PDC there are several
other relays that are exactly the same so I switched another one in
place of the fuel pump relay and still no start.
I also checked the fuel rail and it was completely dry. So off to the
Dodge Dealer it went, and later in the day they called and confermed
it was the fuel pump. I offered to go with an aftermarket pump
because it's half the price. Still $579.99 out the door.
Again thanks to all that answered you are a great help to us in need.
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