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Thread: And Dealers Wonder Why?
          
   
   

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  1. #1
    glennsexton's Avatar
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    And Dealers Wonder Why?

     



    Not really “hot rod”, but hope you’ll find this worth the read.

    Some months ago, my 2002 (5.4 V8) Expedition began to run a bit rough at idle. The service engine light came on so I plugged in the diagnostic tool and found a “P0174” code. The code indicates a lean condition and in searching the web, I found several articles indicating that there may be some issues with contamination on the Mass Air Flow (MAF) sensor wires. This vehicle has an aftermarket air filter and MAF so it’s pretty easy to pop the filter and look down the throat of the MAF. Sure enough, there was some junk on the sensor wires so I sprayed a bit of contact cleaner and the problem disappeared – for a while.

    The idle became worse and I did the unthinkable – took it to the local Ford dealer. Now don’t get me wrong, I like these boys and have them change my oil because for 29 bucks they give me 6 quarts, a new filter, top off the fluids, dispose of the old oil, rotate the tires and I don’t have to get dirty (somehow different on the work car..). At any rate, at their recommendation, I had them throw a new set of sparkplugs in (175,000 miles) and off we go. Problem gets worse and the P0174 comes on every 50 miles so it’s back to the dealer. After running their comprehensive diagnostics ($108), they tell me that my fuel pump is 5psi low and that’s the problem. To change it requires draining the tank and their book says this is an $800 plus repair. Ouch – just before Christmas! I’ll wait a bit.

    As I think on this, it occurs to me that there may be another issue here. The car runs fine once it’s off idle and shows no signs of fuel starvation at WOT. So I go again to the MAF and this time remove the MAF and find that the gasket between the MAF and the intake flange is compromised - the vacuum leak was playing havoc with the fuel management computer. And the fix? Yup – you guessed it - some good silicone and fifteen minutes later we’re back on the road with the code cleared and purring like a kitten with a belly full or cream. That’s been 400 miles ago and we’re just fine – no codes and smooth idle.

    And the dealers sometime wonder “why don’t our customers ‘trust’ us?” Oh, I dunno - $800 plus fuel pump versus a .69 gasket? You tell me…

    Joanie is happy as we have a bit more to spend on the grand kids and as most of us know, “when the queen is happy, everyone is happy.”

    Merry Christmas All,
    Glenn
    "Where the people fear the government you have tyranny. Where the government fears the people you have liberty." John Basil Barnhil

  2. #2
    IC2
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    Exactly the reason I NEVER take my F350/V10 nor my DW's Escape V6 to the dealer except for a yearly NY State inspection. When they quoted me $800+ for lower ball joints only, worth $64/pair for my last truck, an F150, I decided that I had enough mechanical experience to do mundane work. Of course it needed uppers as well, but the job was still less then $300 including a couple of tools. I do understand overhead and the prices that are charged, but I do expect something more then a gouge for less then quality service.
    Dave W
    I am now gone from this forum for now - finally have pulled the plug

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    ckyle29 is offline CHR Member Visit my Photo Gallery
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    The local Toyota dealer here in Denton wanted $800 to replace a bad charcoal canister. That is until I told them that the canister was in fact part of a national recall due to Toyota knowingly sent bad canisters to the U.S. for several years in the late '90's.

    Of course, they claimed to know nothing about it, but quickly changed their tune when I showed them the paperwork. Suddenly, that very expensive canister was FREE. Got to love the Internet!!

  4. #4
    Bob Parmenter's Avatar
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    I suspect a lot of us have similar stories, but rather than add to the pile, here's a vid about a proposed future. Imagine how much this technology can increase the cost......

    Your Uncle Bob, Senior Geezer Curmudgeon

    It's much easier to promise someone a "free" ride on the wagon than to urge them to pull it.

    Luck occurs when preparation and opportunity converge.

  5. #5
    Weasel Diesel is offline CHR Member Visit my Photo Gallery
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    After working in a dealer shop for 25 years, I can say that just about every fuel pump in the tank I had to do, had darn near a full tank. The book usually paid roughly 4 hrs for the job (drain tank, drop tank, ect ). I never dropped one tank. I would unbolt the 4 bed bolts, unplug the light harness and tilt the bed up like a dump truck. This allowed plenty of room to get to unit. Swapped them out, dropped the bed, BAM !! Paid 4hrs in 45 minutes. Gravy Train...

  6. #6
    ford2custom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Weasel Diesel View Post
    After working in a dealer shop for 25 years, I can say that just about every fuel pump in the tank I had to do, had darn near a full tank. The book usually paid roughly 4 hrs for the job (drain tank, drop tank, ect ). I never dropped one tank. I would unbolt the 4 bed bolts, unplug the light harness and tilt the bed up like a dump truck. This allowed plenty of room to get to unit. Swapped them out, dropped the bed, BAM !! Paid 4hrs in 45 minutes. Gravy Train...
    I've heard of people cutting an access hole in the trunk also. I paid over $400 in the 80's for a fuel pump in the tank on a Turbo Coupe Thunderbird, after paying a couple hundred for the diagnostic test saying it was a sensor. Of course they still had to charge me for the sensor. That was over $600 it's scary when you have to go to the dealer. Today my mechanic friend lives down the road from me so he does the same thing in his home shop that he does at the dealership. If I can not fix the problem he will do it for a lot less then the dealership, I know they have overhead but I can't help them with that. My wife’s Cavalier was running really bad, I put a new gas filter on back by the tank, a pain in the butt still running bad. I took it to my friend $50 after I bought an oxygen sensor runs fine now, and the check engine light went off.

    Richard

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    ford2custom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Parmenter View Post
    I suspect a lot of us have similar stories, but rather than add to the pile, here's a vid about a proposed future. Imagine how much this technology can increase the cost......

    Harbor Frieght will copy the sunglasses and we will be in business.

    Richard

  8. #8
    Don Dalton's Avatar
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    Talking

     



    Glen ,I have the same engine and the service engine light came on.I went to Auto Zone and they analyzed the engine and came up with the same code bank 1 and 2 running lean.

    Could you walk me through what you did? I'm not sure where the parts (gasket & wires) are in reference to the air flow system. Like your engine it runs fine at full throttle.When I first start it up it goes to 2000 RPM momentarily. Occasionally it balks when I am stopped and start to accelerate.
    Don D

    www.myspace.com/mylil34

  9. #9
    glennsexton's Avatar
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    The MAF is located between the air cleaner and the intake tube. The gasket surface (where the four holes are) bolts to a flange that connects to the air cleaner housing. That's where my vacuum leak was.

    Another potential problem is dirt and crud on the little wire sensors in the MAF. They can be cleaned with a spray cleaner. Use contact cleaner (from Radio Shack) as it is a "soft spray" where carb or brake cleaner is high pressure and may damage the wire (they're really small and somewhat delicate).

    Hope this helps!
    Glenn
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    "Where the people fear the government you have tyranny. Where the government fears the people you have liberty." John Basil Barnhil

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    IC2
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    Just two notes to Glenn's last post - there is also a spray can of MAF cleaner available at you local auto parts place as well. The second - be extremely careful when you do clean that MAF as those wires - some years, fragile beyond belief (don't ask how I know)
    Dave W
    I am now gone from this forum for now - finally have pulled the plug

  11. #11
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    Glenn,
    It's always good to find the real problem, especially when it's a cheap solution compared to throwing $$$ to someone else. Years back I did a few months at the Chevy dealer in Corpus Christi after my USN time, and the Owner made it crystal clear that the "pretty boys" out front selling cars were necessary, but that it was the Service & Parts Departments that kept the doors open. This message was prompted by a call from an elderly lady who was unhappy with the way she had been treated by the Service Manager, when she brought her Chevy in for every maintenance need.

    Hope the grandkids enjoy their "extra's", and that the Queen remains in good humor through the new year! Have a Merry Christmas!
    Roger
    Enjoy the little things in life, and you may look back one day and realize that they were really the BIG things.

  12. #12
    glennsexton's Avatar
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    Back at ya Roger - Looking forward to having all four of my kids and all four grand children on Christmas day - as close to heaven as I can imagine!

    Merry Christmas All,
    Glenn
    "Where the people fear the government you have tyranny. Where the government fears the people you have liberty." John Basil Barnhil

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    Thumbs up

     



    Glenn.finally got to the root of the problem. I tried the cleaning procedure(thanks for the photo) you out-lined to no avail.

    I went back to Auto Zone again after cleaning to get another reading,same reading( lean mixture.)

    An employee over heard the conversation and said I used to service Ford's and the problem is usually the hose from the PCV has weakened from the heat from the manifold and develops a vacuum leak.He went out and I started the engine and he traced the hose to the manifold and found the leak.

    I after 6 hours of loosening and removing the air system I got the new hose assembly (50.00 bucks ) mounted.The old hose had no protection from the manifold heat but the new one had a second wrap around the hose,which led me to believe that a big screw up in the original design.

    I figure I saved a couple of hundred bucks,at least.

    Thanks for the Info.Glenn and CHR.
    Don D

    www.myspace.com/mylil34

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