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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have been driving my car 4 days a week to work for the past month. Finally got to the point where I felt it was reliable.

After work I stopped at the grocery store (hour drive). Only one mile from home. I couldn't get the car started. Turned over strong. Just wouldn't catch. Waited 10 min while I got my kids to pick me up and take me home.

I called AAA. They came in 45 min. I first tried to start it. I couldn't hear the fuel pump clearly (maybe). But after a few tries it started and it started to putter back to life. After 2-3 more tries and feathering the gas to keep it running, it ran fine. I had the tow truck follow me home. The entire time back it ran fine. I have a little bit more than a half tank of gas.

The only thing I did recently was replace the in tank pump about a month ago. Car ran but main pump was getting loud at the half tank mark. After replacing it, main pump sound is back to normal. Another symptom was hard starts when the gas was very low. But that is all fixed with the new pump.

I am a software developer by day. I say I can't fix it if it's not broke. Meaning, I have be able to reproduce the issue before I can try to fix it.

Since its running now (I will check in the morning), how do I go about troubleshooting? Something getting hot and needs cooling down? I hate those issues. This is the first time dealing with this issue.

Thoughts?
 

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Is this a spica motor? If so the cold start solenoid could be acting up and flooding the engine. Try disconnecting the wire (tape it off to be safe).
Says it an 87 so its an L-jet. When you replaced your in tank pump, did you replace the stepped hose?

Battery? Check voltage while cranking..needs to be 10.5 or better to start but will crank with 9 volts,
 

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did you replace the fuel filter under car when you did the pump?

And as Don says, if the earlier trouble was with the in-tank pump when level got to half or below, then it points to a bad "stepped" hose on the in-tank pump.
Did you check and/or replace that?

To test, just keep the tank filled up over half...if problem does not occur again, your stepped hose is likely bad. (when fuel level drops below half, the stepped hose is no longer submerged and can suck in air)
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Says it an 87 so its an L-jet. When you replaced your in tank pump, did you replace the stepped hose
did you replace the fuel filter under car when you did the pump?
No to both. Just the pump.

Stepped hose looked fine. Fuel filter was replaced 2 years ago.

But it's been running the best since I replaced the pump a month ago.

Not sure if this is related. But now both power windows are not working.

My plan this weekend is to start cleaning up electrical connections. Lots of electrical connections.
 

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I have been driving my car 4 days a week to work for the past month. Finally got to the point where I felt it was reliable.

After work I stopped at the grocery store (hour drive). Only one mile from home. I couldn't get the car started. Turned over strong. Just wouldn't catch. Waited 10 min while I got my kids to pick me up and take me home.

I called AAA. They came in 45 min. I first tried to start it. I couldn't hear the fuel pump clearly (maybe). But after a few tries it started and it started to putter back to life. After 2-3 more tries and feathering the gas to keep it running, it ran fine. I had the tow truck follow me home. The entire time back it ran fine. I have a little bit more than a half tank of gas.

The only thing I did recently was replace the in tank pump about a month ago. Car ran but main pump was getting loud at the half tank mark. After replacing it, main pump sound is back to normal. Another symptom was hard starts when the gas was very low. But that is all fixed with the new pump.

I am a software developer by day. I say I can't fix it if it's not broke. Meaning, I have be able to reproduce the issue before I can try to fix it.

Since its running now (I will check in the morning), how do I go about troubleshooting? Something getting hot and needs cooling down? I hate those issues. This is the first time dealing with this issue.

Thoughts?
Hot restart issues are becoming common threads. I had one, and found that my coil wire corroded and was giving weak spark through an also fouled (but not very old) cap. Couple drives later, one of the flywheel sensors crapped out resulting in no start also. My AAV is inop and contributes some to stumbling when hot for a few seconds only occasionally.

Injector service was also suggested if that hasn't been done recently or if your previous fuel pump issue may have involved rust in the tank.

Let us know when you figure out what's yours.
 

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My plan this weekend is to start cleaning up electrical connections. Lots of electrical connections
That sounds like a sensible plan. My initial thought was the fuel pump relay playing up for your issue.
If the in tank pump is playing up I think you would hear the main pump being louder than normal as it struggles to pull the fuel through. It sounds as though you didn't hear the main pump when you had the no start?
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
That sounds like a sensible plan. My initial thought was the fuel pump relay playing up for your issue.
If the in tank pump is playing up I think you would hear the main pump being louder than normal as it struggles to pull the fuel through. It sounds as though you didn't hear the main pump when you had the no start?
In hindsight, I tried to start it a few times. Wouldn't that pressurize the fuel so the pump wouldn't be working? When I thought about listening for the pump maybe it was already done. That is why I said "maybe".

I will double check that both pumps are working. I am planning on buying a few items for the car anyway (doing front brakes). I will order a fuel filter.

I will only drive locally for now until I come up with something.
 

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Wouldn't that pressurize the fuel so the pump wouldn't be working?
Good question and TBH I don't know the answer. I'm sure somebody better informed than me will be along shortly, though.
All I know is that, with the car running, I could hear the main pump very clearly when my in-tank got clogged.
Whilst I think it would be pumping whilst the engine turned over you wouldn't hear it above the cranking sound...

Oh well, it won't do any harm to check the relay or give it a tap if the problem recurs :)

Just another thought (again, it happened to me recently!) - do you have an immobiliser fitted?
On my automatic car I have a Cobra alarm which disables the starter and, also, the fuel pump circuit. Recently I had a few no-starts in certain locations - a public car park, a gas station, for example. The car span over fine but no start. I had to disable the alarm (lucky I know where the fuses are) to get it to start.
 

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Check the fuel pump fuse under the rear parcel shelf. Mine would get hot and lose connection. Replaced with newer style fuse in waterproof holder.
 
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